Seven Ways to Create a Better Vacation Rental Experience

Ahh. Summer is here and your vacation rental property is booked solid for the entire season. All your renters are happy. They love you and your property and they have no problems. Everything is in good repair, there are no major issues, and raving reviews are written in the guest books. Generous tips are left for housekeeping, and your guests are making purchases from your little store.

Wouldn’t it be nice if life were that simple?

Seriously, if you have done all your maintenance and have good communication with your guests throughout their stay, you may well hear only about minor occurrences. Here is a list of seven ways to make your renters’ stays successful.

Top 7 ways to create a better rental experience

1. Send a confirmation e-mail to your renters the week prior to their visit, letting them know you are looking forward to their arrival and that you expect they are in for a wonderful and relaxing get-away. Tell them that they can check out the weather forecast at Include a link to your property’s detailed list of amenities, such as a hair dryer, curling iron, and iron and ironing board. Encourage them to contact you if they have any last minute questions or concerns, and be sure to give them emergency phone numbers if they need to reach.

2. Leave a hand-written welcome note, along with a gift of coupons and product samples, in their room upon arrival. (Most local store owners will be very happy to have you give these out as it encourages your guests to visit their store.) If you have the time and are so inclined, guests feel very welcome when they find a freshly baked and wrapped piece of cake awaiting them.

3. Contact your local Chamber of Commerce and other businesses for brochures and make them available for your guests.

4. Ensure your guest guide is up to date and includes instructions for all the appliances and entertainment units they will be using. Tell them what happens to certain appliances when the power goes out and how to reset. Have clear instructions for garbage disposal; where the on/off switch is located and that the water needs to be on while the disposal is running. Encourage guests to use the trash can more than the disposal, and that egg shells and banana peels are a plumber’s best friend. Give specific and clear directions for the garbage and trash so they will know precisely what to do. Explain too that wrapping all fish leftovers in newspaper and placing them in the trash receptacle is very important for a healthy air environment. Be specific and bullet point anything that will make your job, and your housekeeper’s job, go smoothly.

5. Be sure the rooms are spotlessly clean for your guests’ arrival. A first great impression will set the mood for the entire stay, and the number of calls will be significantly reduced.

6. If you don’t have natural shade from the sun, or if the bugs are bad in your area and you don’t have a screened sun room, consider purchasing a gazebo. They are relatively inexpensive, easy to set up, and provide your guests with a sun protection and a mosquito free environment.

7. Provide fresh linens — enough so each bed has two complete sets and an extra set in the largest bed size. This will ease your guests’ anxiety about what bedding to bring, and will make them feel more at home while on vacation. Learn from every renter’s suggestion, and put a strategy in place to prevent an inconvenience from happening again. Using these tips shows that you have gone the extra mile and should create less needy guests…while making your life much easier!