Vacation rental owners are currently experiencing some of the lowest vacancy rates ever and otherwise profitable investments are now becoming liabilities.
Innovative Property Solutions has six tips for filling vacation rentals and generating profitable income:
Tenant turnover is expensive, however "empty" time can be advantageous for a landlord who is willing to spend the time getting organized. Downtime is best utilized by ensuring that the property info is correct, marketing strategies are formed and property photos are fresh and accurately reflect the condition of the rental. All repairs and remodels should be performed during this time in order to properly ready the vacation rental for incoming eager renters.
Once renters have informed you that they will be moving on, implement your marketing strategy in order to attract new tenants. Highlight special amenities and focus on features which set you apart from the rest of the rental market: extra bathroom, pet-friendly, close to public transportation, etc. Target marketing is key as you will want to attract a renter which seems ideal. Don't waste valuable dollars marketing to everyone.
Online applications are the way to go with vacation rentals. They are fast, user-friendly and provide an appropriate avenue by which prospective tenants may best view your property via pictures and descriptions. The online application process also allows landlords a fast, efficient way to screen renters and avoid wasting time with showings in the event that a prospective tenant does not meet necessary criteria.
Talk to your current renters. Inquire about friends who might be seeking a new vacation rental. Offer an incentive program such as money off next year's stay, a gift card or a more specialized incentive perk. Make sure to communicate with your own personal friends and family members about your property and screen EVERYONE regardless of how well you might know them.
Make sure to have only the best quality photos of your property featured online and pair them with accurate descriptions of the rental. Let renters know exactly what to expect and make efforts to qualify them prior to showings. While this process might inconvenience a current tenant, however this will save valuable time and money in the future.
Vacancies are inevitable for the most seasoned landlord, but they don't have to be long-term. When you find yourself in this situation, reflect on the past and note that which historically worked well and what failed. Go over the to-do list, review which marketing strategies were successful and whether you ended up with solid tenants. Always maintain consistent notes and plan for the future while learning from the past. Don't skip steps in the process! You could cost yourself time and money.
Related: "5 Tips for Maximizing 'Passivity'"