Tips for Renting Vacation Homes

Family on Vacation

Don’t underestimate the convenience of a vacation home rental. When you think about it, you’re getting what you pay for. Considering the extra space compared to conventional hotel rooms and the great locations, there’s much to be said for the money well spent in a vacation home. This is especially true for family travelers who require separate rooms and bathrooms. Who likes waiting their turn to shower?

Despite the obvious pros of getting family members to pitch in on a weekly vacation home rental, there’s a certain risk involved. Included in those risks are legality concerns and basic consumer protection. Before you agree to that townhouse rental, you should take these tips into consideration:

    1. Understand Risks – If something sounds too good to be true, it probably is. How many vacation¬†homes have you heard of that comes with a guaranteed “perfect view of the ocean”, only to find out later the property is 3 miles away from the beach? It happens, and renters often have no legal recourse to receive repayment. Paying the property owner months in advance gives them too much power–especially if they’re foreign owners in another country. Visit the residence in advance and scope out the amenities.
    2. Verify Legality – Many tourist destinations have made it illegal for property owners to rent vacation homes for any length less than a month. This law is broken frequently, being as it’s hard to enforce. Short term, illegal rentals sometimes go smoothly, but if you’re caught in the middle of a dispute between the landlord and local municipalities, things can go south fast.
    3. Rent a Managed Property – Vacation rentals typically are individual units in large condo complexes. These properties are usually maintained by property management corporations. This is a good thing. If something goes wrong or breaks, you can count on a professional management staff to help get rid of the issue at hand. This also lowers risks of shady business practices.
    4. Use Travel Agency – Travel agents typically have first hand knowledge of the top vacation rentals in the country you’re traveling in. Agencies also stand behind their clientele, which includes you. This is reassuring in the case of something going awry.
    5. Use a Credit Card – Law mandates will issue your credit back if you purchase a product or service but do not receive it. Once you notify the bank of the issuing problem to enact the charge-back provision.

Everyone knows someone that signed up for a vacation rental only to have their trip turn to a tourist nightmare. We should learn from those people and do what they didn’t do: research the property. As you can tell, there’s many ways to get shafted when renting short-term property but it doesn’t have to happen to you. If you’re looking to get the ball rolling on your vacation rental homes, check out!