The rental in practice

1. Respond promptly to requests

If travellers find the advert for your holiday house interesting, they will send you an availability request using the special VaReHo form. We will receive a message relating to the request generated by the booking system in your e-mail in-box and if you have chosen the service, also by a text message.

Don’t forget that replying promptly to the availability requests is the primary key to success to transform it into booking confirmation:

  • check your e-mail frequently and, if possible, several times a day;
  • if you can immediately confirm availability through VaReHo, you will have a good chance that the traveller chooses your holiday home.

Remember to keep your availability calendar continually updated. When your guest provides you with the dates, you can contact them directly to establish other details relating to the rental and the break. We recommend that you always confirm the booking with the traveller in writing.

To avoid unpleasant misunderstandings always clearly specify:

  • the dates of the stay;
  • your contact details;
  • the property address and the directions to get there by car;
  • the total cost of the rental;
  • the possible cancellation provisions and repayment of the deposit;
  • the due dates of the payments;
  • the agreed check-in/out times.

2. Collect the deposits and rent

The policy and methods of payment are also important factors to establish when renting out your holiday home. First of all you need to decide whether to ask for a deposit at the confirmation of booking. The requested amount is generally 10% of the total cost of the stay and if you wish you can use it as a security deposit to be returned to the traveller on departure, if no damage to the property has taken place. You need to decide if you would like deferred payments in several instalments or in a single sum and when the rental balance must be paid: before arrival, on arrival or on departure of the traveller. Pay close attention to the acceptable methods of payment: the recommended methods are credit card, PayPal and bank transfer. Personal cheques are not the most secure method, but can be accepted if the payment is made on the premises. Postal orders and international money transfers using companies such as Western Union are to be avoided since they are not easily traceable.

3. Coordinating arrivals and departures

There are many things to do between the departure of a traveller and the arrival of the next:

  • collecting the keys of the departing traveller;
  • inspecting your holiday home to assess possible damage or loss;
  • carry out the end-of-stay cleaning and prepare the house for new guests;
  • handing out the keys to the arriving traveller;

Handing over the keys is clearly very important. The ideal situation is to hand the keys of the house over to the traveller in person or get a trustworthy friend to do so. This can also be important for your relationship with the guests, who have a chance to get to know you personally and the certainty of being able to rely on someone if need be. Obviously this will not always be possible. If you live far away from the holiday home or you are prevented from visiting, it is best to leave the keys somewhere or with someone where the traveller can collect them.

Here are some more modern methods of delivering the keys:

  • the provision of a special safe-deposit box at the entrance using an electronic code to deposit the keys so that they are available on arrival (to be given to the traveller during the confirmation phase and alterable at each change of guest);
  • the installation of an electronically-controlled door, equipped with a numeric key-pad to type in the access code (to be given to the traveller at the confirmation phase and alterable at each change of guest).

We strongly advise against sending the keys by post or courier: the delivery could occur later than the departure of traveller or, even worse, the keys get lost.

4. Ready, steady, rent!

By now you should be ready to rent out your holiday home. It is very important that you know all the particulars of renting out your holiday house so you are not caught out unprepared.

Basically all you need to do is follow the small number of simple guidelines:

  • always keep practicality for the traveller in mind;
  • provide accurate descriptions of your holiday home in the advert;
  • fix clear and competitive rates;
  • respond quickly to requests;
  • coordinate arrivals and departures and keep the availability calendar up-to-date;
  • make sure that your holiday home is always clean and tidy on arrival of the new guest;
  • set out a clear payment policy;
  • invite travellers to leave feedback on your holiday home;

Don’t forget: there is no such thing as a bad owner, just poor ways of managing the rental process. If you plan your business carefully your holiday home will bring you tons of satisfaction! The VaReHo team is always available to offer all the necessary clarifications regarding the posting of your holiday home, the compilation of the advert and the management stages of the availability requests and booking confirmation. Don’t hesitate to contact us… Ready, steady, rent!

Paying attention to these details is the secret behind extremely successful rentals and holidays.

Practical guide for renting | Where to start from | Marketing solutions