Notices

Airbnb or VRBO or both?

Old 08-20-2020, 11:50 AM
  #1  
Admirals Club Admiral's Club Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Raleigh, NC & Beaufort, NC
Posts: 1,793
Received 263 Likes on 180 Posts
Default Airbnb or VRBO or both?

Hey folks,

I have a 3 bedroom 2 bath bungalow in Beaufort, NC that I've owned for 5 1/2 years. I'm in the process of purchasing another home in the same general location and am now looking at converting our bungalow to an investment property. I've never been in the rental business, so I don't know what I don't know. Initially, I was looking at a management company for long term rentals, but I'm inclined to think I can make substantially more doing the VRBO / Airbnb route.

General thoughts and guidance would be appreciated!
Old 08-20-2020, 11:57 AM
  #2  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 711
Received 195 Likes on 92 Posts
Default

I always have better luck finding things on VRBO. The fees are basically the same between VRBO and AirBNB from a consumer standpoint.
Old 08-20-2020, 12:29 PM
  #3  
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2020
Posts: 15
Received 2 Likes on 2 Posts
Default

For a few reasons I would go with private listings and a word-of-mouth network vs Air BnB and VRBO. For one thing, I wouldn't want to continually curate a website listing that builds up a history of reviews and star ratings and back and forths between the clients and the owners. I also think you'd get a better quality renter and be able to vet them better, or handle problems, when the whole matter is in your hands vs a website. Also wouldn't have to pay their commission or fees.

Last edited by FlyingV; 08-20-2020 at 12:54 PM.
Old 08-20-2020, 12:32 PM
  #4  
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: Texas
Posts: 74
Received 11 Likes on 6 Posts
Default

You might or might not. Cleaning fees and repairs can be a big expense annually. Stuff will be broken. You will need someone local, if you aren't in the area full time, to handle the maids, supplies, towels, and emergencies. If your property is in an association, you may be deed restricted or legally prohibited from offering a short term rental.

I've been on both ends of the relationship - with a house and a VRBO renter many times. The nicer, more expensive properties hold up better. The tenants are usually not 5 guys on a fishing trip partying until 3AM but families that will take care of the place.
Old 08-20-2020, 12:37 PM
  #5  
Senior MemberCaptains Club Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Lancaster, PA
Posts: 1,030
Received 92 Likes on 54 Posts
Default

It's a pain to update the calendars of both sites. It's not automatic like they say. VRBO is more friendly and easier to update for the owner - IMO. Since you are local VRBO is fine but long distance probably not much cheaper to just use a local company.
Old 08-20-2020, 12:40 PM
  #6  
Senior MemberCaptains Club Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: orlando madbeach, fl
Posts: 9,550
Received 1,792 Likes on 848 Posts
Default

Never again would I list with VRBO. Fortunately we have a decent alternative here in Florida. FLARBO.com

Once Expedia bought them the fees went through the roof and you are not allowed contact with the ''guests'' until the booking process is complete. Fine for a hotel but this is a horrible way to manage the people coming into your home!

You see the recent spike in large (100's of people) parties at vacation rental homes across the nation? Not being able to deal direct with the guest is a main cause of this.

If you are forced to use one of the many sites owned by VRBO, seems they are buying them all up, here is a workaround to the dealing direct issue.

Make up a website for your property. Give the property a name, ours is the Mad Beach Bungalow. When you list with one of the big sites, include the property name in your listing headline. Also use it throughout the listing. Many people will GOOGLE the property name and contact you direct.

I will get flamed for suggesting this but not being able to vet guests personally is a deal breaker for me. Our home is located in a residential neighborhood and we love our neighbors. No way I would put someone I wasn't able to vet into the house and roll the dice!

Old 08-20-2020, 02:15 PM
  #7  
Admirals Club Admiral's Club Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: Lewes, DE
Posts: 11,112
Received 3,042 Likes on 1,636 Posts
Default

As a consumer if I need a rental anywhere first thing I check is VRBO. Never had bad luck with it so never changed.
Old 08-20-2020, 02:30 PM
  #8  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2019
Posts: 214
Received 167 Likes on 87 Posts
Default

Originally Posted by signmansez View Post
Never again would I list with VRBO. Fortunately we have a decent alternative here in Florida. FLARBO.com

Once Expedia bought them the fees went through the roof and you are not allowed contact with the ''guests'' until the booking process is complete. Fine for a hotel but this is a horrible way to manage the people coming into your home!

You see the recent spike in large (100's of people) parties at vacation rental homes across the nation? Not being able to deal direct with the guest is a main cause of this.

If you are forced to use one of the many sites owned by VRBO, seems they are buying them all up, here is a workaround to the dealing direct issue.

Make up a website for your property. Give the property a name, ours is the Mad Beach Bungalow. When you list with one of the big sites, include the property name in your listing headline. Also use it throughout the listing. Many people will GOOGLE the property name and contact you direct.

I will get flamed for suggesting this but not being able to vet guests personally is a deal breaker for me. Our home is located in a residential neighborhood and we love our neighbors. No way I would put someone I wasn't able to vet into the house and roll the dice!
Moved my listing to FLARBO after 7 years with VRBO. VRBO is a pain in the ass for the owner, listing fee went up again, fees to the renter are pretty horrendous also. Great company until Expedia bought them.
Old 08-20-2020, 03:06 PM
  #9  
Admirals Club Admiral's Club Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Raleigh, NC & Beaufort, NC
Posts: 1,793
Received 263 Likes on 180 Posts
Default

Originally Posted by jubal View Post
You might or might not. Cleaning fees and repairs can be a big expense annually. Stuff will be broken. You will need someone local, if you aren't in the area full time, to handle the maids, supplies, towels, and emergencies. If your property is in an association, you may be deed restricted or legally prohibited from offering a short term rental.

I've been on both ends of the relationship - with a house and a VRBO renter many times. The nicer, more expensive properties hold up better. The tenants are usually not 5 guys on a fishing trip partying until 3AM but families that will take care of the place.
Free and clear, no HOA or anything of the like. It's also a stand-a-lone property, but I as well am not looking for the party scene.

Originally Posted by FlyingV View Post
For a few reasons I would go with private listings and a word-of-mouth network vs Air BnB and VRBO. For one thing, I wouldn't want to continually curate a website listing that builds up a history of reviews and star ratings and back and forths between the clients and the owners. I also think you'd get a better quality renter and be able to vet them better, or handle problems, when the whole matter is in your hands vs a website. Also wouldn't have to pay their commission or fees.
I've thought about going in commercially with a management company like Airbnb / VRBO for a year or two to build up the word of mouth clientele and then switching to a private listing. I know you lose $$$ with the listing agency, but I assume there is a compelling reason to use their service as well.

Appreciate the feedback!
Old 08-20-2020, 03:13 PM
  #10  
Admirals Club Admiral's Club Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Raleigh, NC & Beaufort, NC
Posts: 1,793
Received 263 Likes on 180 Posts
Default

Originally Posted by signmansez View Post
Never again would I list with VRBO. Fortunately we have a decent alternative here in Florida. FLARBO.com

Once Expedia bought them the fees went through the roof and you are not allowed contact with the ''guests'' until the booking process is complete. Fine for a hotel but this is a horrible way to manage the people coming into your home!

You see the recent spike in large (100's of people) parties at vacation rental homes across the nation? Not being able to deal direct with the guest is a main cause of this.

If you are forced to use one of the many sites owned by VRBO, seems they are buying them all up, here is a workaround to the dealing direct issue.

Make up a website for your property. Give the property a name, ours is the Mad Beach Bungalow. When you list with one of the big sites, include the property name in your listing headline. Also use it throughout the listing. Many people will GOOGLE the property name and contact you direct.

I will get flamed for suggesting this but not being able to vet guests personally is a deal breaker for me. Our home is located in a residential neighborhood and we love our neighbors. No way I would put someone I wasn't able to vet into the house and roll the dice!
Are you vetting every weekly rental at your property, or just longer term rentals? I'm definitely good with the website route.
Old 08-20-2020, 03:19 PM
  #11  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2020
Posts: 229
Received 86 Likes on 49 Posts
Default

Originally Posted by signmansez View Post
Make up a website for your property. Give the property a name, ours is the Mad Beach Bungalow. When you list with one of the big sites, include the property name in your listing headline. Also use it throughout the listing. Many people will GOOGLE the property name and contact you direct.

I will get flamed for suggesting this but not being able to vet guests personally is a deal breaker for me. Our home is located in a residential neighborhood and we love our neighbors. No way I would put someone I wasn't able to vet into the house and roll the dice!
This is how I try to find places to rent. I will also see if people will deal for mid week rentals, especially if both weekend on either side are already booked. We like to go during the week and head back home of Friday! Usually we can get Sunday-Thursday Cheaper than a traditional 3 night minimum on the weekend. It is a win win for us and the property owner, also we are bringing our family and property owners like to see that.
Old 08-20-2020, 06:42 PM
  #12  
Senior MemberCaptains Club Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: orlando madbeach, fl
Posts: 9,550
Received 1,792 Likes on 848 Posts
Default

Originally Posted by time_to_relax View Post
Are you vetting every weekly rental at your property, or just longer term rentals? I'm definitely good with the website route.
We did weekly rentals for a couple of months in the beginning , 15 years ago. They are tough on the house, there to party and generally don't take care of it like the longer term guests do.

We just do longer term "snowbird" rentals now and keep the house for our use during the summer fall months.

Just spent a week in Marathon at a large house/property that does weekly rentals. (Sleeps 20 in three houses)

The place definitely looked used compared to when we were there 6 years ago. Talked with the property manager and he said it's tough to keep up with maintenance as they keep it rented 40-48 weeks a year.

Weekly rentals are tough to manage. Go with a management company if you go this route. Azzhole people will drive you nuts! Make sure the place is in tip top shape to avoid bad reviews. Address issues with guests immediately.

Pay whatever to fix something right away even if you have to pay double for an overtime A/C repair. The good reviews will sell your place to the next renter.
Old 08-21-2020, 09:20 AM
  #13  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Satellite Beach, FL
Posts: 796
Received 428 Likes on 220 Posts
Default

FWIW, I only pretty used VRBO up until about a year ago. Now I will never use them ever again. First ABB has eclipsed them with rental offerings. But the main reason is that, when Corona hit, ABB stepped up immediately with a full refund policy based on your travel dates. I got a full refund with a button click. My wife had a vrbo reservation and they told her to take it up with the owner and even made it a hassle to get the VRBO fees refunded. Will never use VRBO ever again.

Its too bad they all went corporate so that Expedia can just sit back and collect fees and sit on large deposits for months at a time. It was nice back when it was truely "by owner". I always try and email and deal direct to avoid the fees. That used to work most of the time, but it hardly ever works now, if ever.
Old 11-29-2020, 09:39 AM
  #14  
Admirals Club Admiral's Club Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Raleigh, NC & Beaufort, NC
Posts: 1,793
Received 263 Likes on 180 Posts
Default

Looking to setup a simple website as a point of contact for those AirBNB and VRBO customers that want to reach out directly outside of those platforms. I did a google for options and there are a gazillion to choose from... any recommendations from the THT crowd for a hosting service?
Old 11-29-2020, 10:37 AM
  #15  
Senior MemberCaptains Club Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Broward County, FL
Posts: 2,311
Received 287 Likes on 169 Posts
Default

I’ve been with Homeaway-VRBO for 20 years.
I’m not a fan of the new system, but have come to like it, they take care of the taxes and get my money quickly.
If you do weekly I would go VRBO, if you are doing shorter then Airbnb, or do both.
Old 11-29-2020, 03:07 PM
  #16  
Senior MemberCaptains Club Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Central FL
Posts: 1,662
Received 303 Likes on 156 Posts
Default

I have both VRBO and AB&B listings. Over the past year or so, I have only been successful with VRBO. I have had zero bookings with AB&B.

I also run my own website and facebook page for the house.
Old 11-29-2020, 04:36 PM
  #17  
Admirals Club Admiral's Club Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Raleigh, NC & Beaufort, NC
Posts: 1,793
Received 263 Likes on 180 Posts
Default

Originally Posted by k9medic View Post
I have both VRBO and AB&B listings. Over the past year or so, I have only been successful with VRBO. I have had zero bookings with AB&B.

I also run my own website and facebook page for the house.
Who do you use for your website hosting?
Old 11-29-2020, 04:56 PM
  #18  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: See screen name
Posts: 5,936
Received 853 Likes on 536 Posts
Default

I'm a little late to the party on this thread, so I suppose the OP has made a decision, Anyway, I confronted this issue with a place we have out on the California coast, as well as some cottages we used to own on the Neuse in James City. You are ultimately way better off getting a good long term tenant in there; fees and maintenance and servicing, plus the slow winter months all suck the $$$ out of vacation rentals. The latter only make sense to me if the property is one that you are going to use yourself on a regular basis. Since the OP is local, and it sounds like intent on DIY property management, a long term tenant will demand way less time and hassle.
Old 11-30-2020, 03:04 PM
  #19  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Phoenix, AZ, ex Wilmington, NC
Posts: 1,147
Likes: 0
Received 102 Likes on 54 Posts
Default

Originally Posted by time_to_relax View Post
Who do you use for your website hosting?
I hosted a family web page on GoDaddy for a while. They were very reasonable and had good tools. They're one of the bigger, well known, hosts.
Old 11-30-2020, 03:20 PM
  #20  
Admirals Club Admiral's Club Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Ozona, Fl
Posts: 365
Received 111 Likes on 76 Posts
Default

We are on year 16 with Homeaway-VRBO and year 6 with Airbnb currently offering 6 homes on the Platform - Being a premier partner has advantages, we get the customers info and talk with the guest, research them, and either talk them in or out of staying with us. Charge a big deposit or have them opt in on a damage insurance policy. Yes, we have had 2 bad experience over the years, insurance claimed and deposit covered the damage on the 1st and the 2nd one is headed to court after the parents rented the home for college students party.

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2021 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.