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Any holiday home owners?

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cfw1994
cfw1994 Posts: 1,910 Forumite
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(not sure if this is the best forum to post this!)
We've used a small local firm to manage our little cottage (IOW) for a few years.  They have a range of issues that mean they have just told us the won't be able to manage it next year  :/

Anyone here manage their own rental lets, & if so, any tips on where to start?   
We actually do have a little more time to deal with things ourselves, so fairly happy to figure it out, but with nothing currently set up, not too sure the best approach.   Not desperately after maximumising bookings - we generally get 12-15 weeks a year which is fine for us.
Considering the likes of Airbnb, SimplyOwners.net, Sykes, TripAdvisor, etc, but really not too sure the best way to set it up, having passed a % to someone else to do this for a while!

Thanks for any thoughts!
Plan for tomorrow, enjoy today!

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  • Sandtree
    Sandtree Posts: 10,628 Forumite
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    Is the property local to you for being able to do the check ins/outs, dealing with a burst pipe at 3am? Do you have someone to man the fort whilst you yourself are on holiday?

    Don't have a holiday property myself but an ex-colleague used to have a second property that they themselves went to which they also rented out. They did for a while try to get rid of the management companies fees but being a 5 hour drive from the property they decided it was too much of a headache even when using tech to be able to do things remotely (eg electronic keypad entry rather than keys) so ultimately switched back to an agent.
  • cfw1994
    cfw1994 Posts: 1,910 Forumite
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    The letting agent doesn't do anything other than arrange bookings - we have family (& trades) nearby who deal with those kind of things - changeovers, gardening, emergencies - so yes, good points, but we are very familiar with that: thanks anyway!

    It was more around the best places to use - slightly dumped this on us at exactly the time people might be looking ahead to 2021!
    Plan for tomorrow, enjoy today!
  • Emzmom88
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    I dont have a holiday home but my boss does and manages it herself...she asks everyone who she knows to start with and word gets about you would be surprised how many people would rather use a holiday home of someone they know and it gives her the reassurance that for the most part her property will be in good hands as people dont usually trash homes of people they know...one would hope anyway!! From what i believe this is quite easy for her to manage she has printed a document with pictures and information on the property location etc and its ready for people.

    We had a bargain break there this year due to it needing doing up but as long as it is clean il put up with mostly anything esp as it was on the beach and just beautiful views but i intend to pay full price and go back next year as it was wonderful, i know what i am getting and from who ane I feel like if i am going to line someones pockets (they are rich but you know what i mean) id rather help someone i know.

    I hope that helps from a holidaymakers point of view:)
  • cfw1994
    cfw1994 Posts: 1,910 Forumite
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    Thanks Emzmom88, that is helpful
    We’ve created a TripAdvisor page for ours, so we can at least point people towards something with prices, which we can discount for dealing direct with friends & family!) and will try some word of mouth stuff.
    We can afford to use 2021 as a bit of an experiment to see whether we need to do any more.
    Also wondering about targeted advertising somehow for walkers and cyclists - the location is perfect for people interested in those, as well as “normal” multi-generation families for just a classic Isle of Wight holiday (ground floor king size bedroom suits the grandparents, upstairs king and twin bedrooms for the family, big garden!).
    Plan for tomorrow, enjoy today!
  • Aranyani
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    If you allow dogs its worth advertising on the specific dog-friendly listing sites, lots of owners go straight to those.  Lots of dog owners (most, probably) are also walkers too. 
  • cfw1994
    cfw1994 Posts: 1,910 Forumite
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    Good advice, although sadly with allergies a-plenty, we don’t (sorry to dog owners: I’d love to, but....)
    Plan for tomorrow, enjoy today!
  • Aranyani
    Aranyani Posts: 817 Forumite
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    edited 20 September 2020 at 10:57AM
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    cfw1994 said:
    Good advice, although sadly with allergies a-plenty, we don’t (sorry to dog owners: I’d love to, but....)
    Maybe a good reason to let somebody else do the changeovers then?  The dog friendly market is a big market, especially if your property is well located for walking, and it'll be growing considering the rise in people getting puppies and rescue dogs during Covid I expect. 
  • adviceforeveryone
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    We have a holiday caravan and I also manage for other owners, I set up our own website and get most of my bookings from Facebok
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