It may seem like booking a vacation rental would be just as easy as popping onto a hotel website and reserving the room you want, but this is unfortunately not the case! In order to be the best prepared you can be for your vacation while ensuring you get the best vacation rental experience possible, here are a few easy steps to consider when renting a vacation home to make sure you end up where you want to be.
1. Start planning as early in advance as possible. Some vacation homes are in such high demand that they are booked 6 months to a year in advance! If you don’t want to rely on a cancellation to get your perfect rental dates, start looking and booking now.
2. Know what you want. If you have 5 people going on vacation you probably aren’t going to all want to shove into a tiny one bedroom vacation rental apartment, right? Be sure to know how many people are going to be going on vacation with you and what your preferred living situation is. If you know you want to be in a certain location (near to the beach or in the mountains, for instance) look for properties in those locations. You have the power to decide exactly what amenities you want in your vacation rental, so don’t be afraid to be picky!
3. Pick a few properties to follow up on. When you have narrowed it down to approximately 3-5 properties you are interested in get into contact with the owners or the real estate agent in charge of managing the property. Start dialoguing with them and before you know it you might have your vacation rental!
4. Research. Before you commit to anything be sure to confirm the information the owner or property manager has given you. Look up the address on Google to make sure the location is in the right neighborhood and is as close to the things the property manager/owner says it is. Do your research on this property a little bit like a great house detective- it is up to you to uncover the truth!
5. Confirm a contract. If you have decided to move forward with a certain property be sure to go over the contract (which should be written out) with the property manager or owner and confirm all the details on security deposits, pet policies, and cleaning fees.
6. Ask all the questions. Ask any remaining questions you may have regarding the policies or the property- don’t leave anything up to chance!
7. Book your rental home. Congratulations! If you’ve made it this far you have successfully found a vacation rental in which to enjoy a great trip with your family and friends. Now it is time to put down your security deposit and get ready for a host of great memories. Make sure to confirm how you are sending your payment to the owner, as some methods of payment are more secure than others.
8. Last and certainly not the least, enjoy your vacation rental!