Stay a step ahead of the growing vacation rental vertical with the right tools
It’s no secret that more Americans are turning to vacation rentals over traditional hotels and other lodging. A recent spike in bookings has sent the industry on a growth spurt that the experts say will continue to grow through 2019.
Vacation rental industry forecasted to double in size
In the last 10 years, the industry has doubled in size, and annual revenues are approaching $26 billion. In the next three to five years, expect the industry to double again.
Why? Travelers feel that single-family houses and condominium vacation rentals offer more space and opportunities to cut costs associated with being away from home. In 2014, one out of every four Americans stayed in a vacation rental compared to another lodging option.
Thus, there is an opportunity to leverage the many people who are traveling outside of their home markets, and many property management companies are jumping in on the action.
In a recent survey of Propertyware users, 88% of respondents said they either have vacation rentals or are interested in getting into the industry. The majority of those have one to ten units under management, some have as many as 100.
Are you prepared to successfully manage more vacation rentals?
Managing vacation rentals offers an opportunity to leverage a lot of services like cleaning, maintenance, leisure activities and others for fee managers. One idea is to offer consumers not only a roof over their heads but also work with affiliate markets like fishing charters and tours to offer a complete customer experience and share in the revenue.
“Families favor vacation rentals because of the value,” says RealPage Sales & Business Development Director, Matthew Hoffman. “They are looking for more space, having the family all under one roof versus booking three or four hotel rooms which makes sense. This is a big deal and something that is really growing in the U.S. market.”
Having the right tools is essential.
With cloud-based, all-in-one vacation rental software platforms you can simplifies marketing, booking and managing vacation rental properties. They also provide the flexibility to work from your desktop, laptop, tablet or smartphone. Here are five signs that you need the right cloud-based software platform to manage your vacation rentals:
1. You Know You’re Not Making the Most of Revenue Opportunities
Beyond the booking, a number of opportunities exist to earn revenue from vacation rentals. Among them are fees and upsells like tour bookings, maintenance and housekeeping, insurance and owner management fees.
2. Lack of Back Office Transparency
Accounting features should provide transparency into cash flow that support the trust-based accounting model, flexible commission models and easy-to-generate owner statements. Lead Insight dashboards show performance at a glance. If your current system doesn’t provide this kind of transparency, you could end up with more errors and underperforming the market.
3. No Optimized Workflow
Optimized workflows better enable the company to define maintenance and cleaning tasks, work with third-party vendors or allocate invoices. Businesses can be optimized with real-time analysis with standard reports and visual dashboards that display performance at a glance.
4. Inefficient Navigation
If you aren’t able to view available units at a glance and process credit card payments with just a click, then you need a software solution that can. Property inquiries with travel dates will receive instant quotes, and inquiries about properties that are already booked will receive equivalent available property suggestions. You should also be able to easily track agent and guest behavior patterns with visual displays and create actionable items for your agents.
5. Less Than Robust Marketing Tools
If your current system doesn’t provide marketing and operations property management tools that enable multi-image uploads, holiday/season flexibility and instant scoring to measure marketing effectiveness, then it may be time to switch.
As the vacation rental industry continues to grow, stay a step ahead of the game with the right vacation rental management software!
(Image source: Shutterstock)