Why Many of the Highest-Earning Vacation Rental Owners Use a Full-Service Property Management Company

Orlando Property Management

Let’s say you’ve decided to become one of the 2.9 million hosts on Airbnb. Your aim: earn as much money as possible – as fast as possible – while enjoying your vacation rental property each year.

As you consider the possibilities, you find yourself saying something like, “Surely I’ll earn more if I keep all the revenue, rather than turn over a percentage to a vacation rental property management service.”

If that’s you, consider this: whether you act as your own vacation rental property manager or hire a full-service vacation rental property management company, your bottom line will ultimately depend on this simple calculation:

Revenues – Expenses/Costs = Profits

To optimize profits, let’s start with the revenue side. Your vacation rental property absolutely should be listed on Airbnb – and on 50+ other sites. You’ll want listings to take full advantage of each site’s unique characteristics, with words and photography that compel viewers to act.

After your listings go live and you begin hearing from potential guests online (in the vacation rental property management industry we call them “inquirers”), you need to respond to each inquiry in a complete, polite, and timely manner – even if it’s 10 p.m. and you’re exhausted after a long day. If you don’t, you’ll reduce the quality of the experience before a guest even walks through your door.

While communicating with inquirers, it’s important to not “double book” – a common mistake among do-it-yourselfers in vacation rental property management (particularly when listing on multiple sites). When you book different guests for the same dates, someone ends up being disappointed.

A key contributor to revenue is, of course, pricing. Anyone who prices their property at the same rate throughout the year is guaranteed to be missing out on substantial income. Optimal pricing means scanning supply and demand of comparable properties daily – factoring in holidays, special events, and hotel room prices.

Vacation rental owners who attempt to perform price optimization manually tend to find the process time-consuming and almost impossible to pull off.

Fortunately, the right full-service vacation rental property manager will use technology to perform daily rate optimization … as part of their fee. And get this: the increased revenue from daily rate optimization may cover the entire cost of your property manager!

Now let’s return to communication, which by no means ends at the inquiry phase. Booked guests need to hear from you before arrival. If a problem comes up during a stay, they’ll want it quickly addressed. This is particularly true of urgent issues – including the 3 a.m. type. And after each stay, your guests should be encouraged to do something that contributes heavily to revenue: post a review.

On that note, let’s look at a significant contributor to ratings on sites like Airbnb: the expense side. Your property should be thoroughly cleaned before the arrival of guests (the right property manager will include this as part of the management fee). The unit should be sufficiently stocked with starter supplies like shampoo, toilet paper, dishwashing liquid, and more (the right manager will also include this as part of the fee).

So, feel you’re up to the task? If your answer is a big “HECK NO!”, you’ve discovered why many of the highest-earning vacation rental owners use a full-service property management company. 

Find out more about optimizing the bottom line of your vacation rental using Airbnb and other sites. Download Capitalizing on the Vacation Rental Boom: 8 Keys to Success.