Running a holiday let business, might be the best thing you'd ever done. But the journey isn't without its challenges—and there were plenty of times when you will wonder if it was worth all the hassle. In fact, it takes a while before you really get your head around how to manage your properties effectively.
Fortunately, over time (and with lots of hard work), you will learn how to run a successful holiday let business! This guide will share some of those lessons learned along the way: from hiring staff to marketing your listings and everything in between.
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Tips on holiday let management
Here are a few things to remember:
- Be prepared.
- Have a plan.
- Have a backup plan.
- And then maybe another backup plan just in case that one doesn't work out quite as well as you'd hoped (or at all).
- If you're not sure about the law, ask. If you want to know if it's okay for your guests to sleep in their car or bring their pet dog with them, get in touch with your local council and ask them politely.
- Keep your guests happy. It sounds simple but it's easy to forget how important this is when there are so many other things going on at once! Make sure they know where everything is and how things work so that they feel comfortable using them - especially if there's something specific that makes up part of your business model such as having an outdoor space with hammocks available for use by all guests (as opposed to just one room).
- Make sure your guests know how to get in touch with you...and vice versa! This might seem obvious but it's important nonetheless because sometimes things go wrong during holidays which means someone needs help urgently - whether that be fixing something broken back at home before heading out again tomorrow morning or simply offering advice about what local attractions might be worth visiting while staying at yours instead of theirs nearby instead.
Keep communication channels open
Communication is key. Always keep communication channels open. You want to be able to communicate with your guests and their friends, family, pets and plants.
There are many messaging apps that can help with this: WhatsApp is a popular choice for many people in Europe; Line is very popular in Asia; WeChat has become an essential tool for business owners across China; KakaoTalk has millions of users worldwide (including South Korea).
Introduce yourself to new neighbours
When you meet your new neighbours, ask them about their plans for the holiday and if they have any questions about your property. You might also want to get together with them for a drink or meal during their stay. If you can help out with anything, offer that as well!
Learn about your location's regulations
You can find out about your location's regulations by checking with the local council or authority, or by searching online. It's important that you know what regulations are in place and how to get a permit if you need one.
You should also make sure that you know if there are any penalties for breaking those laws. In some places, penalties may include fines or even jail time!
Show them where everything is
If you're managing a holiday let, it's important to make sure your guests know where everything is. This includes:
- The bathroom(s)
- The kitchen (including utensils and appliances)
- The TV and any other entertainment facilities in the property (i.e., games consoles)
- The WiFi password/network name/login details if applicable
As well as: * A fire extinguisher near any cooking areas; * An emergency phone number for local police or ambulance service somewhere in easy reach;
Set reasonable expectations for your guests
To get the most out of your holiday let, you need to set reasonable expectations for your guests. You can do this by providing clear information in your listing and communicating with them directly before they book.
You should also set realistic cleaning standards and noise levels so that both you and your guests are happy with the end result. This will ensure that everyone is on the same page from day one - and can avoid any awkward situations later on down the road!
Check the smoke detectors, locks and other household essentials
The first thing you should do is check the smoke detectors, fire extinguishers and locks on your holiday let. Make sure they're in working order and that you know how to use them if there's an emergency. Next, make sure the water pressure and temperature are okay throughout the property. If there's a problem with these things then it could be really dangerous for guests staying at your holiday home!
Next up: gas supply (that means checking all appliances) - turn taps on/off as well as lights etc., so that everything feels right when people arrive at their destination. Finally, make sure all smoke alarms are working properly by testing them every month or so - if carbon monoxide detectors aren't fitted yet then consider installing one too because this is another important safety feature!
Arrange for a smooth check-out process
Once you've collected the keys and checked out the property, it's time to make sure that everything is in order for your next guests.
- Make sure that there are no damages or missing items. If something has gone missing, you should do a thorough search of the property and contact any relevant parties (guests or neighbors) to see if they have seen it. This may not be possible if there are residents living in close proximity to your holiday let who could have taken something from their window or balcony without realising it at first glance; however, it's always worth checking before assuming that something has been lost forever!
- Check for signs of wear and tear on furniture or fittings - this could indicate that someone has been careless when using them (e.g., leaving doors open). If so then this could lead to further problems later down the line such as mold growth inside walls due too much humidity being trapped inside them due to lack of maintenance by previous tenants over long periods of time.
Best practices for managing your holiday let?
- Keep communication channels open.
- Introduce yourself to new neighbours, and learn about your location's regulations.
- Show them where everything is--from the local supermarket to the nearest bus stop or train station--and set reasonable expectations for your guests. A quiet neighbourhood is a good place for families with young children; an urban location might be better suited for young adults looking for nightlife options nearby.
How to market your listings successfully?
If you want to attract the right kind of guests, then it's important that your listing is presented professionally. The most successful holiday let managers use a professional photographer and provide high-quality images that reflect the property accurately.
The same goes for listing descriptions: they should be informative but also enticing, so as not to deter potential guests from viewing further information about your listing or booking a stay at all. You may also consider adding video tours of each room/area in your property as well as photos of other rooms/areas--this will help potential guests get an idea of what their stay would be like before booking their trip!
How to get outstanding reviews from your guests?
- Be polite and friendly.
- Respond to all reviews.
- Be honest, open and proactive - if you have a problem with something that has gone wrong, let your guests know about it immediately as this will show them that you are honest and want to help them have the best experience possible during their stay at your property. If there is anything you can do to improve things for future guests then do so! For example, if there was no hot water one morning (which can happen), make sure they know that's been fixed before they leave so they don't write a bad review because of it later on!
- Make sure your guests are comfortable by asking if there's anything else we can provide such as extra pillows or towels etc., as well as checking in regularly via text message or email during their stay if necessary - this shows that we care about our customer service reputation which always goes down well with people who have left reviews online.*
Housekeeping and guest services
As the owner of a holiday let, you are responsible for ensuring that your property and its facilities are maintained to a high standard. Guests will expect you to be on hand should they need anything during their stay.
If there is any problem at all - even if it's just a light bulb going or an overflowing toilet - make sure that it's fixed as soon as possible. You don't want bad reviews because of a faulty shower head!
It's also worth remembering that some guests may not be aware of local customs and laws when visiting other countries so it helps if you can provide them with information about things like noise levels after 10pm or rules regarding pets in apartments where pets aren't normally allowed (or vice versa).
How to avoid getting in trouble with the law?
As a landlord, you must be aware of the local laws that govern your holiday let. It is important to understand health and safety regulations as well as fire regulations, noise pollution regulations and parking regulations. You should also pay attention to waste disposal regulations and security requirements.
What to do in an emergency, such as a fire or flood?
- Call the fire department. If you've got a small emergency, like a minor gas leak or something like that, call them immediately so they can come and deal with it.
- Call your insurance company. If there's any damage to property or people in the house, call your insurance company right away so they know what's going on and can start filing claims on your behalf.
- Take pictures of everything! If there is any damage done to anything in your rental unit (whether physical damage or just some dirty dishes left behind), take pictures of everything before cleaning up so that it's easier for both yourself and whoever comes after you if something goes wrong later down the road (and believe me--it will).
How to deal with a bad review or complaint?
While it may seem obvious, it's important to try and resolve the issue directly with your guest. If you can't, contact Airbnb support. If this doesn't work out for you or if there are no responses from Airbnb, then remove the guest from your listing and escalate the issue to a higher level by providing more evidence of what happened (e.g., photos of damage).
Our hope is that you find these tips useful! If you have any questions about managing a holiday let, feel free to check out other guides and articles on our website as well! Happy holiday-ing!