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The Best Tips to Know When Booking a Vacation Rental Property

The Best Tips to Know When Booking a Vacation Rental Property
Planning a getaway can be stressful, especially when you factor in the many “unknown” possibilities. We’ve compiled some of the best tips to help you plan, book and enjoy your vacation at an owner-run property. 

Before your reserve:

Read the good and bad reviews, being mindful of the date they were written. Many property owners “learn as they go” to offer improved amenities. With income generated from renters, many owners re-invest in upgrades to improve the visitors’ overall experience, while other rentals may decline in condition over time due to neglect.

Check out the property on Google Maps: If you’re able to obtain the address of a property before booking, check out its location on Google Maps. Look to see if the area appears safe to your personal standards, keeping in mind that Google only updates the street views every few years.

If the rental is boasting “walking distance to restaurants, shops or attractions”, check out the neighbourhood, keeping in mind that one person’s walking distance is another person’s Uber ride!

When you reserve:

Be sure all the terms of the rental agreement are very clear, paying close attention to details such as deposits, what constitutes damage, and extra costs such as pets or housekeeping services.

Confirm arrival and departure time well in advance to avoid any surprises.

Obtain complete contact information for the homeowner or the property management company in case something goes wrong during your stay.

If you’re traveling outside of your province, be certain that everyone in your group has emergency medical insurance.

Before you arrive:

Organize within your group to streamline meal planning and costs. A little advanced preparation could save your group time and money!

If possible, wait to purchase items such as condiments, food storage items, spices, ice, etc, until after you inspect the rental, as there may be some of these items available for use.

If you’re looking to get out and enjoy local restaurants, shops or attractions but avoid the crowds, use Google to help determine the best time to go. Simply Google Search the business or attraction by name and scroll down to see its busiest times.

When you arrive:

Before bringing your luggage in, make a video and do a quick tour of the entire interior and exterior of the property, noting the existing condition and any damage. This will only take a few minutes but could save you tremendous time and money in the event of a dispute.

Don’t cry wolf! Only contact the owner or property manager when the need truly arises. Most homeowner run rental properties will provide basic information such as wifi passwords, pizza delivery phone numbers and the like - so review this information carefully before reaching out to them.

When you leave: 

When you go through one last time to ensure you have all your belongings, again, create a short video documenting the condition you’re leaving the rental in.

Help others by leaving a review of all aspects of your vacation experience.

Have a fantastic time!