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Choosing a Property Manager for a Vacation Rental Home


Author: Henry Schlee

So you are the proud owner of a vacation home - congratulations.
But just as with your own home, a vacation home needs a lot of
tender loving care. Who is going to look after it when you are
away? And, perhaps, how is it going to pay its own way? Thoughts
like these tend to push vacation home owners into thinking about
appointing a property management company. So what should you be
looking for in a property manager, and how do you go about
finding one with the qualities you want?

First and foremost, you have to decide if you just want the
property taken care of, or if you also want it rented out. This
will determine what kind of property management firm you want,
and whether you need to check their credentials for marketing
your firm, or just for looking after it. Assuming that you would
like your home to generate some income for you, you need to look
for several key capabilities

* A firm which will ensure the highest standards of care and
attention to the fabric and contents of your property. Lots of
rental income will not make up for the damage caused by careless
renters. Make sure that your chosen firm will keep on top of
every * Personal check-in and check-out of every rental. Many
firms take advantage of the availability of keyless coded locks
to allow renters to check themselves in and out. This means that
they never know who is in your property, and whether your
four-bedroom home which is supposed to have a maximum of 8
guests actually has 16 grad party celebrants all over the floors
* The highest standards of cleaning. Cleaning a property
thoroughly is time-consuming and expensive. Many property
management firms cut corners here, and if they do, you will
eventually pay the price in worn-out carpets and other forms of
dilapidation. * Superior marketing capabilities. Marketing
vacation rental properties has become a sophisticated business
these days. Make sure that the primary website on which your
property will appear is ranked highly against the most popular
keywords for your location. A local firm without much experience
in search engine optimization may be able to take good care of
your property but they won't generate a lot of income since
no-one will know that they exist. * Great service for guests.
Look for a manager who knows how to offer excellent service to
guests: arrival baskets of food and drink, pre-booking of
activities, restaurant reservations etc. If guests feel they are
well looked-after, they will be more inclined to come again, but
also feel more of an obligation to take good care of the
property they are in * Great service to you. You should expect
VIP treatment when you are using your own property, but also VIP
service when you call up your property manager to enquire about
availability, discuss renovation and maintenance issues, query
your income statements or any other matter. Make sure you will
always get to speak to someone senior who knows you and your

Have a look at this page http://www.holidaywhistler.com/ownerinfo.htm
for a company which looks as if they
know what they are doing. But make sure you talk to them in
detail and go over the management contract with a fine tooth
comb before you sign on the dotted line. You should expect to
pay 35-50% of gross rental income to the management company; if
they charge less you might want to be suspicious of what they
are offering; if more, they're probably too expensive. This may
sound a lot, but remember that they are looking after your
property for no fixed outlay to you, and they only make money
when you do as well.

Good luck with your search

About the author:
Henry Schlee owns the leading property management company in
Whistler, BC, North America's #1 ski resort.



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