This week on our blog, we’re absolutely delighted to bring you some thoughts from another of our homeowners.
Eric owns two fantastic family-friendly homes on Kissimmee’s Indian Point resort. It enjoys a fabulous location, just a half mile drive from Highway 192 and close to the Orlando theme parks.
Like most of our homeowners, Eric has seen his bookings slow through the pandemic and, especially, through the various lockdowns. As a result, he’s had to adapt some of his booking strategies. We’re really grateful to him for sharing his tips here.
How to maximise booking revenue during the pandemic
I’m not a huge proponent of short stays but realise that the short-term rental guest base has changed with everything going on.
I am getting many rentals from local Floridians and folks from nearby states.
Guests are now booking with shorter lead time. Many of these guests are looking for weekend family getaways and prefer to stay in a cosy private home instead of a crowded hotel.
This trend should be good news for vacation-home owners as it could actually lead to an increase occupancy rates. The days of staying in a 500-room hotel are over for the foreseeable future.
I’ve changed my policy on minimum stays
I chose to limit weekend stays to three night. Three seems to be the magic number for me.
By limiting weekend stays to minimum three nights it reduces the number of party guests. At the same time, it provides the opportunity for guests who may want to book longer stays. By doing so, I’m also seeing bookings of 4, 5, 6 nights.
When I tried a two-day minimum on the weekends, the calendar was filled up immediately – and often with less desirable guests. However, when two-night gaps become available in the calendar I then allow two-night rentals for those specific days.
One big pro for short stays is the opportunity to accumulate many more guest reviews. Potential guests like to see properties with many reviews.
While we would all love to have five-night or seven-night stays, we must realise that this is a transitional period in the short-term rental marketplace. Things are very different to how they were 12 months ago.
During this time, we must do what we need to do as owners to press forward. This time will not last forever and better days are ahead of us.
I am already seeing more guests starting to return from other parts of the country. This is a positive sign. With a COVID-19 vaccine hopefully being available in the spring, occupancy rates should surely improve.
How to book Eric’s homes
Eric owns the fab Summer Point home, which you can view here. It’s recently been refurbished and has a lovely south-facing pool.
His other Orlando property is Lake Point, which you can view here. This one is a great choice for families and has a fantastic lake view from the pool and lanai.
Share your thoughts!
We’d love to publish more homeowner viewpoints on our blog. If you’d like to write for us, we’ll credit your homeowners account with $30. If you would like to be published on this blog, please get in touch with our team in your usual way.