Vacation Rental Panama City Beach FL

Tips On Getting The Most Out Of Your Vacation Rental

Whether you are just beginning or you have been renting homes for years, it is important to adapt to the current market.

Vacation renting, or short-term accommodation is a theory that has been around for hundreds of years.

With all the advances in the travel and information businesses, it is becoming important to adapt to the marketplace to make sure that your property is getting the right kind of reach.

Here are a couple of online basics that will easily drive business your way.

Get Your Property On A Listing Channel

There are a wide variety of listing channels for you to put your property on. They range from major conglomerates with small divisions like the HomeAway family, or classifieds similar to Craigslist and Kijiji. Then there are niche marketplaces, for example,, that focus on hyper-specific sort of rentals.

There’s a variety of channels available. The best way to get listed on the ones you want, simultaneously, is to invest in a channel manager. Much like Futurestay, which allows you to be featured on all these channels, plus get automation.

Whether you opt for a channel management instrument or do it manually, it is important to be featured within these marketplaces. In no order of importance, here are a few listing sites:

  • HomeAway (and its subsidiary sites)

There are a handful, if not, tens of thousands of more websites that tailor to specific kinds of vacation rental homes, so it is always great to list on channels that will have the kind of guests that are looking for your type of property.

Industry-wide, the average rental owner is featured on at least 3 of these listing websites, and though the numbers aren’t precise yet, the trends show that more visibility leads to bookings.

Create A Site & Drive Engagement

Are you searching for a way to avoid fees from other websites and handle the demand on your own? Invest in a site.

Yes, it is still important to be featured on some of the world’s best listing channels and drive bookings through them. But it’s still important to differentiate yourself as an independent business with your own site.

You can even add a booking engine on your site and adjust prices to make certain that they’re up-to-date and change depending on the season. You should also use high-quality images of your property and the area surrounding it.

The more professional the site looks, the higher the booking conversion rate will be.

Driving Traffic To Your Vacation Rental’s Website

Like in online marketing, it’s important to focus on using different channels that lead to your website. Utilizing the aforementioned listing channels and having a channel manager, is the best way to get your property out there.

You’re going to have to invest a small amount of time, money, and effort to get your website flourishing. Though some listing sites give you the ability to link back to your page, others will not — fearing that they may lose their transactional fees.

So if you want to spend a little bit of money to get a solid return, you can put your efforts on these three things:

  • Social Media
  • E-Mail Marketing
  • Search Engine Marketing

These three marketing initiatives will help drive new type of traffic to your site. More importantly, drive bookings that you may have never been able to attain.

The fact of the matter is, people are searching for a new escape or experience. If you market yourself appropriately and obtain visibility throughout all the different channels that are available; you will be able to have more guests, and hopefully, more referrals.

Utilize Social Media & Other Channels To Drive Bookings

There are two ways of going about social network marketing: advertising and creating great content. There are pros and cons to both of them, but it is ideal to balance both and test which ones work.

Creating ads consists of finding the right demographic to target and digging deep to get certain people to view your advertisements. When starting it’ll require a whole lot of trial and error, along with getting accustomed to the advertisement creation ecosystem. So start off with small investments and proceed up incrementally.

Content creation, though it sounds appealing, it is a bit difficult to master. If your content initiatives aren’t high-quality or don’t have good images or wording, you may not see the return on your efforts for quite some time. So the time spent coming up with images, editing, and adding a call-to-action can be more costly.

How To Keep Your Vacation Rental Business Trending In 2020

Have you always wanted to start your own vacation rental business, or are you looking to somehow increase your current vacation rental business in 2020?! Look no further. We are going to cover a few things you need to know to take your vacation rental to the next level!

The vacation rental industry is growing and changing; so should your Vacation Rental business. In 2019, the vacation rental market in the usa showed revenue of more than $17 Billion! Experts say that by 2023, revenue could grow to early $19.5 Billion.

Isn’t that AMAZING?! You better step up your game now and make sure to get the most out of your property in 2020!

Working at the short-term rental business has allowed our team to stay at rentals around the world. Along the way, we have picked up on some smart tricks from hosts that made their property memorable for all the right reasons. Today we’re sharing them with you.

Are You Treating Your Vacation Rental Business Like A Hotel?

Research has found that vacation rentals are becoming more popular to travelers than ordinary hotels. That doesn’t mean that we, as hosts can’t learn a lot from the way resorts operate.

A study by HomeAway and the University of Texas has found that travelers are 73 percent more likely to remember their trip if they feel happy and excited about it before it starts. So it’s all about offering your guests a great experience.

Start by sending them a welcome message and include a manual with recommendations for restaurants and things to do in the area. 9/10 occasions, guests staying at short-term rentals want to experience life as a local.

Who doesn’t love a nice welcome present? This is the part where you can get creative. You may want to leave your guests a local specialty like a bottle of wine, some snacks, or a little souvenir to remind them of their wonderful stay at your property.

It’s a small gesture, but it is going to make a massive difference to your guests and might even help you to get that 5-star review.

Why Should You Include A Welcome Book For Your Vacation Rental?

Ever thought about creating a Welcome Book for your visitors? Your Book will serve as a guide for your guests during their stay. It will inform the guests of the house rules and everything that’s available to them during their stay.

Does your property have a few quirks? You’re not alone. Every property does! Let your guests know where the hard-to-find light switches are, which remote is the one that actually turns on the television, and info about that 1 burner on the stove that gets way too hot. And bear in mind, while most of these things are common knowledge to you, your guests will have no idea.

They can get frustrated when searching to find the answers. Make it as easy as possible for them! Your Book is the perfect outlet for descriptions, instructions, pictures, and all the rules your guests should follow during their stay. Just make certain you keep it brief, fun, organized, and easy to read.

Do You Use Smart-Home Technology At All Of Your Properties?

Haven’t jumped onto the smart-home train yet?! Well, it is about time that you do so! Smart-home technology devices are a necessity for every vacation rental owner in 2020!

Not only are they adding more value to your property (highly appreciated by your guests), but they serve as a protection for your property, to make managing a vacation rental business so much easier.

Smart locks are a easy way to make your guests life a breeze. They are currently revolutionizing how property managers and homeowners keep their guests happy. Nobody has to worry about losing a key again! With smart locks, all our guests have to do is look at their phones and type from the provided key. It is that effortless!

Ever considered using Noise Monitoring at your property? NoiseAware’s Noise Monitoring Sensors allows you to have an insight to the well-being of your property without interfering with your guests’ privacy. If your guests wind up being too loud, NoiseAware allows you to get involved and ensure the safety of your property as well as your neighborhood.

How To Make More Money From Your Vacation Rental

While renting out your property requires a lot of management, this effort is often well worth it if you can make enough income.

Here are the most essential factors to successfully renting out your vacation home and maximizing the revenue it generates.

Maximize Your Marketing

Most travelers research and find their vacation rental online. Marketing your property online–and on multiple websites–is important to getting your vacation rental home in front of enough potential guests.

The biggest mistake we see a typical property owner make is not marketing their property all of the biggest websites

According to HomeAway, its site receives 9.8 million visits a month. Airbnb’s site is reported to have more than 200 million bookings since 2008. is the top ranked website for the Accommodation category with 4 billion visits during the last 12 months.

If your property isn’t listed on all of these travel sites, you are truly missing out on exposure to millions of potential guests per month–and many potential bookings.

Craft a Compelling Listing

Once your property is listed on a vacation rental website, it’s important to have a high-quality listing to attract as many guests as possible.

Each listing website is a little different, but here are the critical attributes of a successful listing:

Get Professional Quality Photos

The photos should reflect the amenities, location, and qualities of the home. Capture as much of each room as you can. Guests want to know if the space is right for their group.

Be as clear as you can. If you believe by hiding a flaw you’ll book more travelers, think again. Reviews of disappointed travelers can hurt you more than missing out on a few bookings for being fair.

Have A Well-Written Description

Write a great headline that is descriptive and specific. Highlight what makes your home unique, while also clearly spelling out what guests want to know. Write that you cover all your bases but not so much that guests are discouraged from reading it.

Sell your particular location in the vacation destination. Are you near a hip entertainment district? Make certain to include what makes your home and neighborhood stand out.

Have A Competitive Price

Make sure your home is priced competitively for comparable homes in your area. Don’t forget to also look at hotel prices to make sure that your home is not priced too high to compete with them.

When your home is booked more year-round, you earn more revenue. Our homeowners usually find a 35% increase in earnings when they use our dynamic pricing strategy.

Get Reviews

88% of consumers trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation. Many major booking sites are utilizing verified review methodology to ensure that reviews were submitted by verified guests booked through their platform.

Since search results on Airbnb and HomeAway are affected by number of favorable reviews, you want to have a review acquisition strategy in place.

If you have these important bases covered, more potential guests will look at your rental listing than the listing of a comparable home with quality photos, out-of-sync pricing, vague descriptions, and no reviews.

Respond to Inquires and Booking Questions Quickly

If you have a great listing that is on all of the major vacation rental websites, you’ll get many inquiries and questions about your property. To be able to convert these questions into stays, your vacation rental management company need to be prepared to respond quickly and appropriately answer questions or concerns.

Since 84 percent of guests get an inquiry response the same day, according to Phocuswright’s 2015 study, you need to be ahead of the curve.

Fast, quality answers are one of the biggest reasons homeowners seem to property managers. Most owners simply can’t keep up with the 24/7 nature of responding to queries and recognize they’re leaving money on the table.

Make Booking Your Property as Easy as Possible

After a guest decides he or she wants to rent your home, owners and management companies should make it as easy as possible. Enable your property to be instantly bookable online and accept credit card payments.

Travelers have been conditioned from the online travel agencies to book instantly online and want instant gratification. Guests want the same thing when booking a vacation rental.

Making it easy to book the property with a credit card is important as well because guests prefer the convenience and security of using a credit card rather than mailing a check.

Soon, hosts won’t have a choice. Airbnb and Homeaway are encouraging hosts to offer Instant Book or Book It properties. Since being able to instantly book a property enhances the guest experience greatly, major booking engines are likely to make it mandatory.

A subset of new hosts to Airbnb are expected to enable Instant Booking, further indicating this is the direction they are moving in. The total vacation rental marketplace has also seen a doubling of instantly bookable properties within the course of the last year.

Homes managed by owners and property management companies that do these five important things well will generate more income than homes that don’t. Once it takes additional time and effort, the increase in revenue can be material.

If you’re currently managing your home and don’t have the time or expertise to try these tactics, consider a property management company. The increased revenue and time saved should more than offset the management expenses.

If you’re already working with a management company, make sure they’re doing these five items well for your property. Otherwise, you may be leaving money on the table.

Panama City Vacation Rentals

5 Incredible Ways to Increase Your Vacation Rental Revenue

The reason you’re in the property rental game is to make money. Sometimes it can be hard to get ahead of the competition and keep making revenue on your property, so let’s look at the five best ways for you to increase earnings on your vacation rental.

Have the Best Amenities

We suggest you beat the competition by offering the best amenities and extras to your guests. By investing in features such as high-speed Wi-Fi, smart TVs, gaming consoles and docking stations you already put yourself ahead of the curve.

Give your property a unique selling propisition with something unique like a fire pit or tipi tent. Offering luxury soaps and bedding will add more appeal to the property, and if your property is animal friendly, make certain to add bowls and beds for the furry guests.

Be Flexible

When peak seasons end you may see a lull in bookings, so it is more important to be flexible during these times. To make sure you get enough bookings to keep your earnings as high as it would be in the peak seasons, you’ll probably need to lower your rates.

This means your room will stand out and off-season traveler’s will choose yours as it is the cheapest option. Along with regular engagement and positive reviews your rental will be attractive and stay booked up throughout the season.

Be Present Everywhere

You’ve got to be in it to win it, so make certain that you’ve obtained your property registered everywhere. Make a detailed profile on all the major vacation rental sites to boost your property’s visibility. In fact, our survey that was 2016-2017 showed that simply listing your property on multiple channels can bring increase in earnings.

Websites such as Airbnb and are the most popular at the moment, so by featuring your property there you’ll be able to reach more people and increase your chances of making a booking.

Have the Best Profile

It’s important to make your profile stand out, so make certain to use the best photographs and include as much information about the property as possible. Use a high-quality digital camera, not your smartphone camera.

You may want to enlist the help of a professional or amateur photographer here, to make sure the images are representing your property well. Consider making a video presentation .

Finally, don’t forget to fill out the entire profile informing guests of the amenities, local transport information, proximity to city centre, beach or other attractions etc..

Keep it Simple

People are using the internet to get things done as quickly as possible, so make certain to it is as easy as possible for the guests to make a booking. Allow guests to book with their credit card for instant payments and added security.

By enabling Instant Booking and Book Now features, you allow your visitors to make an immediate booking without having to wait for a reply — that means more people will be eager to book with you, and they’ll get faster service.

By investing a little time and effort into your vacation rental property, you make it more appealing to guests and more bookings will be made, meaning that your earnings will increase.

Think about the needs of your guests from the moment they search for a property all the way through till the end of their stay and you’ll be sure to see results. Don’t forget to make the best of what technology has to offer either

Tips On Hiring A Vacation Rental Company

So you’re thinking about hiring a property management company for your vacation rental.

Maybe you’ve got an extra home, you just purchased a new property, or you’re exploring ways to make some extra income. It could be your first time dealing with vacation rentals, or maybe you’ve been burned by property management companies before.

A question you may be wondering is why shouldn’t I just do this myself?

While there are owners who handle management themselves, it can be incredibly time-consuming to:

  • Promote your rental
  • Field traveler inquiries
  • Take quality photographs
  • Write and revise the listing
  • Answer questions about your property
  • Vet potential guests
  • Juggle on-the-ground services like cleaning and maintenance, and follow up for reviews.

There’s a better way. Hiring the right vacation rental management company for your home can take the stress tasks, extra time, and marketing responsibilities off your plate.

However, before you hire a traditional or local property manager, make certain that you ask these seven questions to know you’re getting everything you need.


You’re looking for a manager that has a fantastic feel for the local market. A great property manager will know the ins and outs of your location — high season, low season, competing rates, what sorts of property are popular in the area, and the way local regulations and trends are affecting vacation rentals.

Ask your potential manager questions about the local market and feel out their responses. If the vacation rental manager has reasonable answers to those questions, you’ve probably found a solid manager who spends a good amount of time thinking about how to help their customers succeed.

If they seem uncertain or their answers seem off, you may want to keep looking. Be particularly wary if you know about regulations in the area that they don’t; every manager should be fully aware of the status of local short-term rental regulations. And don’t base their expertise years in the business. There are quite a few longtime property managers out there who haven’t kept up with changes in the industry and don’t perform well as a outcome.


Before employing a local property manager, do the math to determine whether you can afford to pay that high of a fee and still meet your rental income goals.

Contracts are the greatest sticking point for owners who have wound up with a poor property manager. If you figure out in the first two months that the property manager isn’t doing their job well, but you’re locked in for a year-long contract, you’re going to be unhappy for the remaining ten months of that year.

You’ll also want to learn the payment terms and timing. Some managers can take months to pay and, if you are caught in an unfavorable contract, it can be a long time till you get paid.

If a management company requires a contract, ask whether there are any out clauses based on performance or poor service. For example, if the management company fails to clean the property three times in 1 year, or just gets you two bookings in six months, you should be able to leave their service without a penalty.

Above all, make sure any fees and agreements allow you to build a vacation rental business that prioritizes guest experience over short-term profit.


You’re selecting a vacation rental management company for the high level of services they provide. You’ll want to know exactly what services are included in their fee.

Specifically ask whether the fee covers marketing, photography, writing the listing, updating the listing, observing market trends, cleaning, maintenance, pre-stay walkthroughs, or in-person visits for any issues that arise during a guest’s stay.

You should also ask about any services that are not included in their fee — for example, some property management companies will charge an additional fee if one of their workers has to visit the property outside of business hours to address a problem the guest is having. Fantastic guest support shouldn’t cost more.

As soon as you know what services the fee does and does not cover, ask yourself if you are getting enough bang for your buck. If your management company covers everything from marketing to maintenance, the fee may be worthwhile. If it covers cleaning and all other services are a la carte, you should probably keep searching for a better deal.


This is an important one. Ask them how and where they’ll market your property.

Many vacation rental management companies prefer to market their clients’ properties only on their own site. These days, that’s insufficient. You want to be on all the major sites with highly professional listings. No matter how popular a local manager’s website is, it is never going to get the same amount of traffic as major online listing sites like Vrbo, HomeAway or Airbnb — which means you’ll be missing out on a lot of potential guests if you are restricted to one website. Make sure you understand their marketing plan.

Marketing is a big word that includes the photography of your rental, a high-converting property listing, framing your rental for current trends and the market, and how it is promoted.

A vacation rental manager’s 25-50% ought to cover the cost of marketing your property on at least one major listing site in addition to any marketing efforts they make to raise the profile of their own website. Listen for words such as”appear high in the search results” or”search engine marketing” — these are good indicators your manager has put effort into raising and maintaining their site’s profile online.

Your manager should also actively solicit reviews from happy guests and follow up with guests who have already stayed at the property to see if they want to book again next year. Ask your vacation rental manager what they do to ensure repeat business and 5-star reviews to lure new guests to come and stay at your property.


Vacation rental managers aren’t awake around the clock(which is just fine, because most guests aren’t either) but they ought to be available when individuals are most likely to be making their travel plans: before work, after work, and on weekends.

If your manager is only available to make bookings from 9-5 on weekdays, the chances are very good you will be missing out on bookings from those who work standard office jobs at those hours. Believe it or not, the ideal response time for questions is 15 minutes, so the bar is pretty high for supplying the kind of service that turns into bookings.

You should also ask if guests are able to book online and use a credit card. The vast majority of guests prefer to book online, and very few are eager to get on the phone or send a paper check in the mail. If your potential manager doesn’t offer any way for those guests to book online, you’ll again miss out on bookings.


The traditional models of vacation rental management are outdated. Doing it yourself is a LOT of work and, as we’ve covered, working with traditional property management companies means less control with fees that are hard to justify.

But there’s a better way. You don’t have to do it all yourself. And you don’t have to sign a contract with an overpriced property manager