This article, the second part of a series, will help vacation homeowners learn more about marketing rental homes online. It’s important to understand that people looking for vacation rental housing are generally looking for more than they can get with a branded hotel. They usually want space, privacy, laundry and almost always a cheaper rate than when they stay in a hotel.
The main difference between booking a private holiday rental home and a branded hotel chain is to know in advance what you will get when you book with a hotel chain. Also, if things aren’t going well, you always have the manager on hand to sort things out. On the other hand, vacation rental homes are almost always privately owned and operated, and in the past you weren’t sure just what you would get.
The internet has changed everything about the rental housing market. Now, future renters can visit a website to view photos and read the final decision to read information about vacation homes – which means that online marketing of a rental home should be a top priority.
Advantages of online rental housing marketing
By marketing your rental home online, you have the perfect low-cost way to show your vacation rental home to the world. Online marketing can put you on a par with big hotel chains; because it really gives you an advantage. While their sites will be practical and informative, you can take the time and TLC to make your website warm and cozy, while reassuring your future renters that your vacation rental home will meet more than their requirements.
Also, setting up a website for a vacation rental home gives you a worldwide presence. While the U.S. vacation rental market may still be in its infancy, in many other countries it is the norm for families to stay in vacation rental homes rather than hotels. Marketing a rental home online can help a U.S. homeowner reach out to families from abroad and attract them home.
Put your holiday rental home online
There are several ways to market your Internet rental home:
- Create your website
- List your vacation home with a rental agent or manager
- List your vacation home in many vacation rental sites
While the three options for marketing rental housing have their place, creating your own internet site is essential. Having your own website gives you complete control over how your vacation rental home is shown to potential landlords. If someone contacts you who wants to rent your house, do you really want to send it to a site that has other houses like yours? Remember, there are always other landlords who use the Internet to market your rental property and only remove you for rent. Listing sites can help you reach more people, but in the end you want the rental to see your individual site.
Create your own site for a vacation rental home
Your website should have the following standard pages, which are important for marketing your rental property properly:
- Home page
- Property description
- Photo Gallery
- Visitor information
- Contact information
The homepage is probably the most important part of your rental home marketing strategy because the visitor is the first contact with your home. Make sure the home page layout is simple, clean, and scarred. Think about adding two photos instead of just one to make your website stand out from the competition. One image may be the usual front plan of the home, the other image may be something that sets the rental home apart: a great view, a beautiful sunrise, a pool scene, and so on. You can also think of taking a picture of the house lit up at night, which will make the image memorable.
You will also need to write a text that will help you market your rental property. This step should not be difficult, but you should take the time and think about what to think. You want to sell your house, not just state the facts. The text might be helpful in imagining future renters throwing it back with a fresh drink in the pool when they see the children around them. Set the scene first, instead of starting with a list of the best things about your vacation rental home. Be descriptive and use your imagination as a way to market your rental home as a way to get readers interested in learning more.
To get some ideas about what to focus on in the text, ask yourself these questions:
- What do you like about your holiday rental home for your family and friends?
- What do you like to do when you’re there?
- Do you have something you love but generally don’t know about your holiday rental home or surroundings?
- What special features does your home offer?
- What would you like to know if you rented this home?
General Image Ideas
The use of good quality exterior and interior photos of your home cannot be overstated to successfully market a rental home. In a highly competitive area like Florida, photos can make the difference between securing a reservation or failing. Sometimes, a potential guest will consider several properties with the same characteristics and the same cost. In this case, guests will definitely choose the holiday home they like. This means that quality photos are key to successfully marketing your rental property. Common mistakes are poorly lit images, taken from strange angles, with unfurnished pool decks and porches, or with inappropriate things visible (wet towels, piles of paper, etc.).
Here are some things to keep in mind when marketing your rental property with photos:
- Consider using flowers. Fresh flower pots can be nice, but don’t go overboard, and don’t be tempted to move a flower pot when you’re taking pictures. It will be silly if the same vase continues to appear in different rooms.
- Set the tables. In the formal dining room, open a bottle of wine, fill wine glasses, light candles and use scarves. In the kitchen dining room, put it for dinner with the family, with more unusual places, a lemonade pitcher, and so on.
- Make sure the kitchen of your holiday rental home is bright. It should be spotless, a bowl of fruit on the counter. Basically, you want to liven up the look of the house and wait for when the guests arrive.
- Welcome to the bedroom by lowering the sheets, bursting the pillows and putting magazines and books on the bedside tables.
- Photo common in the evening. Fill the tub, add plenty of bubbles, light candles, smooth towels and maybe have a glass of red wine available to create the atmosphere.
- Use your digital camera to take hundreds of photos of your vacation rental home. Even if you’re not a photographer, you’ll get the good ones you can use to market rental property.
Marketing a rental home with your website can be part of a strategy that uses many other techniques, from print ads to online listings for real estate marketing sites to attract more renters to your property. Future articles in this series will look at additional ways to market a vacation rental home and the benefits you have for them.