Amazing Vacation Rental Properties – How to provide the greatest Guest experience possible.
The goal of any owner who chooses to use their property, their home, as a vacation rental is to share their amazing property with the Guests.
Whenever an owner decides to Vacation Rent their home, the 2 most important concepts in creating a successful rental are:
Provide the greatest Guest experience possible.
Operate your rental like a business.
These 2 concepts are the lynchpin of any successful vacation rental. From each concept we find the many constants that create a vacation rental property that creates an experience that Guests want to recreate each and every time that they return, year after year.
Today, I will only focus on the first concept.
Providing the Greatest Guest Experience possible
All vacation rentals are not created equal. As with the Homes themselves, from condo to oceanfront estate, there are costs and sub-categories of vacation rentals. Luxury to budget, within each sub-category and every price structure there are vacation rentals that consistently create the greatest guest experiences possible and those that miss the mark.
The Home must be used by the Owner. Well it doesn’t necessarily have to be used by the Owner, but by and far, the Vacation Rentals which are used by the Owner tend to have that “feel”, that loved in “feel”, that most Guests want.
As Guests, when we Vacation Rent, part of the allure of a rental is the fact that we are gaining access to an opportunity to live in a home that quite possibly, we the Guests may never have the opportunity to experience otherwise.
A home that is lived in or once was lived in, by the Owner, has the little upgrades and amenities that only come with such a use. Rental only properties, tend to have a more sterile feel to them. Not to say that a rental only property cannot be amazing, great strides need to be taken to add that “unique” experience, that one-off experience that a “lived in” home provides.
- Aloha – This is not a hotel, but that doesn’t mean that you cannot provide a level of inclusion which helps to immerse your Guests in the experience that is your vacation rental and the world around it. At the highest end of the luxury vacation rental market, concierge service is a must. Private dinners and Zipline tours, someone must be available to schedule. Private Chefs for a party of 14 – no problem.
At every level of the Vacation Rental spectrum there is an expectation. A standard of care. To create the greatest of guest experiences, look around, what is the standard of care for your properties. Exceed that standard.
$200/night 2-bedroom condo in a complex of 300 2-bedroom rentals can still stand apart by finding ways (within your cost restraints) to provide that Aloha.
A small gift basket upon arrival. Complimentary water for the entire trip. A personal follow up call from your Property Manager the day after arrival… “Just to check-in”.
Anybody can put a lock box on a door and email instructions to the next arriving guest. It is the little things we do that define Aloha, and will define your Guests experience.
Know your Guests expectations and exceed them. Most all Guests expect:
Free - Wifi
Television (in the living room and in the guest rooms)
Appliances (i.e. Toaster, Coffee Maker)
Clean Linens and Towels
Spices and Condiments
Exceed your Guests expectations with:
- Apple TV
Sound system (throughout the house that connects via blue tooth) – If not possible 1 or 2 wireless speakers with Bluetooth.
A Keurig or Nespresso (in addition to a coffee maker, never in lieu of). Also provide a minimum of 10 pods of coffee, with directions on what stores carry such pods.
Extra pillows for the Beds
The best linens possible (within your budget of course) that go on the best mattress possible (within budget).
Many Guests are looking for an experience, the home that provides the little things that a Guest may not have at home are the little things that they will remember forever.
Provide a packet of information
Consistency – If you can create the right experience for your Guests, it will lead to continued repeat customers. A failure of so many Vacation Rentals, to maximize the opportunity and to grow their occupancy, is because of a lack of consistency. Part of the experience is being able to recreate it year-after-year. Systems. Process and procedures. These are the things that must be in place to insure consistency.
This is not an extensive list of all the facets of creating a highly successful Vacation Rental, but a big part of a Vacation Rental is the experience. These concepts will help you create that experience.