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payment for summer rentals

Old 03-02-2016, 07:51 PM
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Default payment for summer rentals

Hello

I am renting my beach house weekly this summer for the first time and starting to get inquiries. For those of you who are experienced with this, what is the correct procedure for handling payments. I of course want security deposit + full payment when you sign the lease. I am afraid that is too demanding and am thinking of requiring the security deposit with the lease and full payment for the week a month in advance of the arrival date.

This more lenient policy creates more work for myself. Is there a best practice? do most renters find it acceptable to pay in full this far in advance of a July or August weekly rental?

It is a 3 story house with a two story upstairs unit and a 2 story downstairs unit. The upstairs unit goes for $2500 a week and the downstairs goes for $1800 a week.

Thanks for your help.
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Old 03-03-2016, 02:12 AM
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Pay in advance. Due 30 days before rental. Happens all the time here in FL. Every individual is different though. Some prefer a deposit and the rest in cash...
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Old 03-03-2016, 02:17 AM
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I do deposit to hold the week. Balance prior to move in.
It's your house - you make the rules, I'm happy with mine.
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Old 03-03-2016, 02:37 AM
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We have turned our vacation home over to rental agency but before that we just required they pay in full prior to going but most were folks we knew/know, this was the way My Mom had done it for 30 yrs but one thing I realized is folks would back out since they had nothing tied up in it. She would end up with vacant weeks but not a big ordeal to her, she just wanted to cover taxes, insurance and overhead

However since My sister I now own the house we got tired of that crap in a hurry and I really have no time to deal with it and my sister NEVER gets anything done so I just turned it over to local rental agency. Best thing we ever did, prior to that I was ready to KILL MY SISTER at times. She can be a complete DUMBASS when it comes to business

Guy now requires deposit and payment in full 30 days prior to arrival time, if they cancel before 30 days he refunds but after that he only refunds IF he gets it rented for full rental value
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Old 03-03-2016, 03:28 AM
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Recommend turning it over to a rental agency. They take up to 25% off the top but deal with the billing and individual complaints/issues. A lot less stress.
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Old 03-03-2016, 03:36 AM
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Originally Posted by duke460 View Post
Recommend turning it over to a rental agency. They take up to 25% off the top but deal with the billing and individual complaints/issues. A lot less stress.
Is it 25 % Because it's a weekly vacation rental with high turnover? Is that all inclusive including cleaning? I ask because it seems high to a traditional property management company.
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Old 03-03-2016, 04:12 AM
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Originally Posted by JUST GOT RIVERRED View Post
Is it 25 % Because it's a weekly vacation rental with high turnover? Is that all inclusive including cleaning? I ask because it seems high to a traditional property management company.

Yes, cleaning fee is extra just like accommodations taxes.

Rental agent handles all of that, even when one of us from our families goes we pay for cleaning. Rental agent told us that we he KNOWS everything is up to his standards and to be honest it is worth the cleaning fee for us to do that . Linens included

IF you are really wanting to keep it rented this is your best route, if you are just wanting some extra cash flow VRBO is not bad at all
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Old 03-03-2016, 04:15 AM
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Originally Posted by triguy7 View Post
I do deposit to hold the week. Balance prior to move in.
It's your house - you make the rules, I'm happy with mine.
Same here, deposit ahead of time, then balance when you show up for the keys.
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Old 03-03-2016, 04:17 AM
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Best practices vary by region. Our standard is 35% down, balance due 30 days in advance. I wish the market would bare 25% around here. Feel free to pm me any questions. That's the biz I'm in in two different markets.
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Old 03-03-2016, 04:21 AM
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I have a house booked in Islamorada off VRBO for early May and they wanted and got full book up front and the security deposit. I can't say I was 100% crazy about that but the house had excellent reviews and it seemed the better home properties, particularly the ones on the coast, wanted it all up front. I wrote this off to supply vs demand.

So absolute worst case scenario, I could be fighting an estate for $4300 if the homeowner dies before I stay there.
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Old 03-03-2016, 05:06 AM
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Originally Posted by tprice View Post
Yes, cleaning fee is extra just like accommodations taxes.

Rental agent handles all of that, even when one of us from our families goes we pay for cleaning. Rental agent told us that we he KNOWS everything is up to his standards and to be honest it is worth the cleaning fee for us to do that . Linens included

IF you are really wanting to keep it rented this is your best route, if you are just wanting some extra cash flow VRBO is not bad at all
Just because an agency does it doesn't mean it will be filled more. You may have a good one. There are plenty of bad ones too especially here in FL.

25% is pretty high but I guess it may vary by area. Here it is 15-18%.
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Old 03-03-2016, 06:51 AM
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Originally Posted by duke460 View Post
Recommend turning it over to a rental agency. They take up to 25% off the top but deal with the billing and individual complaints/issues. A lot less stress.
Do this. Plus they keep the house clean for you
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Old 03-03-2016, 06:54 AM
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We just rented a place in Virginia beach.

1/2 of total due now. Rental is 9,500 plus cleaning and taxes

Balance 30 days prior to occupancy.

Kind of cool is no security deposit but a 94.00 insurance policy that covers damages. Never heard of that before.
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Old 03-03-2016, 06:59 AM
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They insurance thing is newish. In my experience a security deposit is better. People want it back so they're more interested in keeping the place in good condition. You don't get the insurance back so the mentality of some people is different.
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Old 03-03-2016, 07:16 AM
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Originally Posted by AutoPaint View Post
I have a house booked in Islamorada off VRBO for early May and they wanted and got full book up front and the security deposit. I can't say I was 100% crazy about that but the house had excellent reviews and it seemed the better home properties, particularly the ones on the coast, wanted it all up front. I wrote this off to supply vs demand.

So absolute worst case scenario, I could be fighting an estate for $4300 if the homeowner dies before I stay there.
I recently booked a place for two weeks through air bnb. They require up front payment in full, shortly after booking. It stinks to have the money tied up for 6-months, but that's the way they operate. I looked at other places that wanted security, cleaning fee, taxes and additional monies for a pet....passed on those places as it felt like I was getting nickle and dimed, just give me the all inclusive price.
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Old 03-03-2016, 07:23 AM
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Originally Posted by Poncho65 View Post
I recently booked a place for two weeks through air bnb. They require up front payment in full, shortly after booking. It stinks to have the money tied up for 6-months, but that's the way they operate. I looked at other places that wanted security, cleaning fee, taxes and additional monies for a pet....passed on those places as it felt like I was getting nickle and dimed, just give me the all inclusive price.
My house/dog sitter has a handful of cabins she owns/rents in NC and when comparing notes about my vacation rental, she said she gets full payment up front on her cabins. Her reasoning is she wants serious renters only, not someone that's going to tie the calendar up for two months then drop the rental two weeks out.

It works for her and it obviously is working for the owner of this home in Islamorada.

This homeowner in FL has had my $4300 since October and the summer was all but booked per their calendar.
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Old 03-03-2016, 09:50 AM
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What do you think I should do about cancellations?

I was thinking that a cancellation within 3 weeks of the start date results in forfeiture of security deposit. Is that too Gestapo?
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Old 03-03-2016, 09:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Bluefishing View Post
What do you think I should do about cancellations?

I was thinking that a cancellation within 3 weeks of the start date results in forfeiture of security deposit. Is that too Gestapo?
I would make it 30 days and state that if cancelled closer to the start date that you would return if you are able to find another tenant, less a fee for your additional work
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Old 03-03-2016, 09:55 AM
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Do AirBNB and let them take care of it for ya!
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Old 03-03-2016, 10:22 AM
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Originally Posted by Bluefishing View Post
What do you think I should do about cancellations?

I was thinking that a cancellation within 3 weeks of the start date results in forfeiture of security deposit. Is that too Gestapo?
We did 50% deposit, remainder due 30 days before rental. 100% of that is lost if cancellation is less than 30 days. Before 30 days, the 50% deposit was 100% refundable. None of the "if i can find someone else" stuff.

Never had an issue with it. I think the supply vs demand in your area will help dictate it.

Look at it this way - you want to make it easy for people to do business with you, just like you want the same on the other side of the deal.

If you market it yourself, the best thing you can do is have it squeaky clean and get a pro photographer (or amateur from craigslist for $100 or so) to come in and take some great pictures with a wide angle lens in HDR. This will make all the difference vs your iPhone photo of the bedroom that barely shows the bed because of the flat lens.

Describe the property accurately, have the pictures show EVERY ROOM so there is no "wonder what the 2nd bedroom looks like" thoughts.
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