Three keys to success for short-term rental management

UK: Alex Lawrence, content marketing manager for smart asset checking service Shepper, delves into the three keys to success for holiday and short-term rental management as travel restrictions begin to ease across some European countries.

With Brits now finally able to start going abroad for their much-missed summer holidays, short-term rental property management companies should get ready to take advantage of the upcoming rise in tourism.

It has been a challenging year so far for many businesses, yet things seem to be on the up as more industries reopen and work towards recovering from the coronavirus pandemic.

This is particularly welcome news for the short-term and holiday rental property industry, which has had to pause operations.

With the summer holiday season already underway, people are ready to pack their bags and travel – more so than ever. It will soon be vital that the short-term rental industry gets up and running to meet demands and get business off the ground.

  • Location, location, location

Property management companies looking to be profitable in the long run need to be ready to have a huge presence in a wide range of locations. These locations should be chosen to maximise accessibility to travellers, such as popular cities and other tourist hot spots. Cities are also ideal because they tend to be more expensive. Travellers will be more likely to look for cheaper options, like short-term rentals, over pricier hotels. You can look to gain access to properties through direct ownership or by working with local landlords.

It is also important to manage properties in areas where the local laws and regulations are more short-term rental friendly as this will make it much easier for operations. This will also help you, landlords and other stakeholders get a good return on investment.

  • Use other services to help you manage

Managing short-term rentals can be time-consuming and difficult to navigate. Keeping the properties clean and in perfect condition for each guest is important to make sure you receive good reviews. This, however, can be tricky as guests are constantly checking in and out.

If managing the logistics of this becomes too much, hiring a professional property management company may be the answer. They will be able to handle the cleaning and preparation of each property, and you will not be left with the stress.

It is also important to regularly check that your properties are in top condition. Inevitably, things break, get damaged, are not cleaned properly and so on. If your properties are widespread and you are not able to conveniently access them yourselves, checking them can be an expensive and time-consuming task.

Professional checking bodies like Shepper are able to check properties, saving both time and money. Shepper uses its network of dispersed people to check properties local to them. Offering on-boarding checks, verification, checks-ins and check outs, Shepper makes sure any issues with properties are reported instantly. That way, you will be able to deal with them quickly, before guests can complain.

  • Work on your marketing

Put simply, great marketing of your properties will mean more guests. You should look to increase your online presence for all your properties, listing them on as many short-term listing sites as possible. Think Apartments.com, Airbnb, HomeAway, TripAdvisor, Cozy and so on.

Social media presence can also increase visibility by allowing guests to easily share their experiences. Referrals are always a great idea, as people are far more likely to stay somewhere they know a trusted friend or relative has.

Another excellent tip for marketing properties is making sure you have clear, professional and high-quality pictures of your properties. Make sure these are up to date so that guests are not surprised when they arrive.

It is also important to have a good, easy-to-read description of each property. Keep it simple, informative but do not be afraid to make it personal. One of the biggest appeals of short-term rentals is often the homely, personal touch. Encourage guests to leave reviews and respond to them to help show future guests how great staying at your property is. If you get any negative reviews, simply address the problem [if it is reasonable of course] and show that you have on your listings/website.