How Can You Benefit From Guest Ready Inspections?

Owning and caring for a vacation rental property is a large investment in time and resources. That’s why smart property owners invest in some form of property management arrangement to oversee care of the property between guests. But, are you getting the most effective care for your investment with simple housekeeping and key services? How could you benefit from guest ready inspections for your vacation properties?

What is a Guest Ready Inspection?

Guest ready inspections are the premier level of property management service. The inspection is designed to ensure that your property is handled with the utmost care. Between guests, the inspection guarantees property security, cleaning, maintenance, functionality, and staging are all completed in a timely and satisfactory manner. Here’s how it works:

Within 24 hours after guests check out, a member of your local BBO management team drops by the property for a quick walk-through to check for any obvious problems, deficiencies, or damage. After this preliminary check, housekeeping is summoned to complete the between-guest cleaning checklist for your particular property.

After housekeeping is completed, a member of your local BBO management team performs a thorough guest ready inspection that consists of the following:

  • Ensure adequate cleaning has been performed according to the owner’s housekeeping checklist
  • Inspect for damages and missing items, following the owner’s property/items cataloging
  • Check safety/security measures, smoke/carbon monoxide detectors, windows, are operational and locks are re-keyed (if part of the between-guest setup plans established by the owner)
  • Light staging following owner’s staging notes as a guide
  • Ensure wifi, lights, sound system, televisions, TV remotes, hot tub, gaming systems, etc. are fully functional with adequate batteries in all remotes
  • Provide documented inspection notes including any necessary photos and cataloging that is automatically sent to the property owner

This comprehensive report, complete with necessary photographs, provides important documentation concerning the care of your property and any deficiencies that need to be addressed. When guest ready inspections are completed, your vacation property is ready for new guests to enjoy.

How Can Guest Ready Inspections Help Me?

If you wonder why such an extensive service is necessary, consider how things work without such an inspection. Property management and housekeeping often become unequal partners in completing only a few of the items on the above inspection list. Too often, housekeeping is asked or expected to handle property management duties (“Could you check the lights….etc.”). These extra duties fall outside their normal scope of service and are unfair.

Moreover, housekeeping is not accustomed to billing for such extra services, therefore they handle issues for which they are not compensated. This leads to unhappy cleaning services and incomplete property and staging. Cleaning services are not happy, property management isn’t happy, and property owners end up with lower guest ratings from items left undone.

A guest ready inspection between every new guest ensures that every item is fully ready for every guest. Nothing is overlooked and every detail is in order. In addition, your property is cared for, cataloged, and regularly inspected to minimize damages and loss.

While between-guest housekeeping and regular deep cleaning are important investments in the care of your property, guest ready inspections represent the top tier of vacation rental investment maintenance. Guest ready inspections are the most important service we offer, and although each come at a slight additional cost, the long-term value investment into your property is incalculable.

BBO – Your Property Management Team

With Book by Owner as your local, on the ground property management team, you can enjoy peace of mind knowing your guests will enjoy a fully cleaned and prepared vacation rental and your property investment is protected. We care for your home and guests 24/7/365, all for an affordable monthly fee. Contact your local Book by Owner for complete details and pricing for all the services available in your resort vacation area, including guest ready inspections.


2017 Recap – BBO and the Vacation Rental Industry

As 2017 fades into history and 2018 dawns afresh, it’s safe to say last year was huge for the vacation rental industry. More and more, travelers are choosing to rent private properties instead of cramped hotel rooms. In fact, as recently as Thanksgiving 2017, vacation rentals tied with hotels and resorts as the most popular places to stay.

Vacation Rental Industry Growth

According to Phocuswright, the travel industry research giant, almost one in three U.S. travelers in 2015 stayed in a privately owned short-term rental, an increase of 24% from 2010. Growth in the private accommodation sector is faster than in the travel industry as a whole, and is expected to be worth $36.6 billion by the end of 2018. That is double the growth rate of the entire travel sector.

According to a Bloomberg news article concerning the vacation rental industry, “If people have stayed in peer-to-peer lodging [P2P] in the last five years, the likelihood that they prefer traditional hotels is halved (79 percent vs. 40 percent);” this according to data from research by Goldman Sachs. They continue, “We find it interesting that people ‘do a 180’ in their preferences once they use P2P lodging. They move directly from preferring traditional hotels to preferring P2P accommodations.”

Without a doubt, vacation rentals represent a product that people love and a solution that people need.

Regulation Efforts in the Vacation Rental Industry

In 2017, several states and municipalities examined or enacted legislation regulating some aspects of the short-term vacation rental industry. Mainly, these laws seek to address two basic issues:

  • Location – Many local jurisdictions seek to regulate where short-term home rentals can be located, mainly within tourist and short-term occupancy zones and outside residentially zoned areas.
  • Taxation – Many states and cities are eager to enact and enforce rental taxation statutes to take advantage of the growing short-term vacation rental industry in their area.

Some states are siding with vacation rental property owners on the issue. For example, HB 216, preempts cities and counties in Idaho from enacting or enforcing any ordinance that would prohibit a short-term rental from a certain part of their jurisdictions. It took effect January 1, 2018. Even for states and municipalities that allow short-term rental properties in any zone, they still seek to require homeowners to provide a local contact person who can respond to complaints or emergencies for each home when local needs arise.

Book by Owner – Resort Property Management

At Book by Owner, we are glad to be part of the vital movement that is the vacation rental industry. In 2017, we opened new offices in Aspen, CO, Kissimmee, FL, and Phoenix, AZ, while our other offices continue to flourish. The response to our unique model of local, flat-fee vacation home services has been great from both homeowners and realtors.

As your on-the-ground team for resort property services, we provide local, personal contacts and service with corporate support, including answers to your questions concerning local laws pertaining to the vacation rental industry. We handle the hassles of taking care of a property, responding to late guest calls or calls from neighbors, and more.

This year, we expect to open many more offices in exciting locations. In fact, we’re looking for entrepreneurs that want to own and operate their own local offices. Growth through referrals is our model. Will you help us spread the word? For more information about BBO franchise opportunities, or our local vacation property services, call 877-645-7060 or contact us online.


What to Look for in a Holiday Vacation Rental

Singer Andy Williams captured the essence of this season in his 1963 hit It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year. The holidays are when families get together, meals are shared, and memories are made. If you and your loved ones have “parties for hosting” you will want to select the perfect holiday vacation rental. But, what amenities should be top on your list? Here’s a selection of holiday rental must-haves.

Large Gathering Spaces

No matter your location, you must have plenty of space for the family to mingle, eat, play, and laugh. Popular estimates range between 50 to 70 square feet per person for comfortable living. While you may only plan to occupy your holiday vacation rental for a few days, be sure to consider the space needs of every family member. Small children generally require more space for toys and activities than do the elderly. However, no one will enjoy the holiday if forced to exist in tight surroundings. Be sure there are adequate sleeping arrangements as well as plenty of room for relaxation and enjoying one another’s company.

Fully Equipped Kitchens

Sharing a sumptuous meal with your family is a highlight of any holiday gathering. Whether each segment of the family is tasked with providing a part of the meal or you are cooking together, a fully equipped kitchen is a definite must. Be sure to consider the size of your family cooking team when selecting a holiday vacation rental. How many cooks will be active at one time? How many ovens will be needed? Will a single refrigerator adequately hold all the necessary ingredients and/or leftovers? Give thought to appliances, counter space, preparation space, cooking capacity, and various implements and utensils that may be needed.

Functional Fireplaces

Nothing creates a warm, inviting ambiance like a softly crackling fireplace. And nothing ruins a holiday vacation experience like a fireplace that doesn’t work. Be sure to inquire about the fireplace or fireplaces in your proposed holiday vacation home. Have they undergone the necessary seasonal inspections for safety? If the fireplace burns wood, is there an adequate supply of wood nearby? How close? If you would rather not face the chores of hauling wood and shoveling ashes, be sure to look for a rental with a gas fireplace. Is there sufficient gas for extended use throughout your stay? Asking such questions ahead of time can prevent disappointments later.

Clean and Safe Hot Tubs

Hot tubs provide a luxuriating way to relax after a long day of cooking and family time. Conversely, they can also be a source of bacteria and disease. Due to warmer water temperatures, hot tubs are much harder to disinfect than swimming pools. When choosing a holiday vacation rental home with a hot tub, always ask about cleaning procedures and schedules. Hot tubs need regular maintenance and cleaning between rentals to maintain peak cleanliness and safety. Upon arrival, inspect the hot tub and water. Both should be clean, clear, and without any strong disinfectant smells. Recirculation systems should run constantly. If you suspect anything is amiss, call the property owner or manager immediately.

Easy Access to Sports/Entertainment Venues

Although families will want to spend time together eating and relaxing, you will also want to create memories enjoying fun experiences. Consider your family makeup and choose a holiday rental close to suitable sports or entertainment venues. Both indoor and outdoor opportunities exist for the athletic and those who choose to sit and watch. Select a rental property with easy access to such activities for quick travel and return times. Some rentals include package deals or discounts on nearby venues. Be sure to inquire when you call about the property.

Are you interested in renting out your property yourself, but still need someone local to take care of the home and guests? Book by Owner (BBO) pioneered fee-based resort property management and continues to be the industry leader. We provide the peace-of-mind you need and a high-quality guest experience that will continue to get you great reviews and more bookings. With BBO you have professional, reliable management services available to you and your guests 24/7/365 without the costly commissions of traditional property management programs. Contact BBO and get started today!