Maximizing the rental income from your vacation rentals, while protecting your property and yourself, is not always an easy task. Say you decide to go with the one-and-done approach of selling all of your rental weeks through a guaranteed contract to a professional rental manager. In many ways, this can be the best of all worlds, as another post has already discussed: you receive guaranteed income, you don’t have to spend any time or energy renting or worrying about the home, and a professional manager is on the hook to take care of the property for you.
That is all great, but there is one potential downside. Vacation rental managers willing to sign guaranteed contracts with homeowners are far and few between. If you are lucky enough to find one, how can you ensure you get the best possible price? After all, there is a real informational imbalance between you and the manager. She does this as a full time job, and may have been doing it for decades. She knows precisely what the property can and should bring in, and what the costs and margins need to be. How can you make sure that you aren’t leaving money on the table?
The easiest way is to create competition. When managers compete against one another for the privilege of managing your home, you win. You can do this by reaching out to all the rental managers in your area, and trying to get them to give you their best offer, but given the research and legwork this requires, you might not end up saving yourself any time, and may end up worse off than you would have been had you simply stuck with your current management solution.
Another option is to use a wholesale rental marketplace, such as VacationFutures. In these marketplaces, professional rental managers bid against one another for wholesale rental weeks listed by vacation homeowners. As a homeowner, you create a listing just as you would on a site like HomeAway or VRBO, blocking off the weeks you want to keep for personal use, and leaving the rest.
The difference comes in that rather than having families browse your listing and contacting you to book a night or a week at a time, these marketplaces are stocked with professional vacation rental management companies who all bid against one another for your entire block of weeks. When the auction closes, you can determine if the highest price offered is enough to make it worth selling all of your weeks wholesale, and if you are comfortable signing a guaranteed contract with the company who made the bid. If you are, you sign the contract and that’s it.
Really, it is that easy. All of the benefits of the guaranteed contract, without the downside or hassle of having to track down or negotiate the contract bilaterally. You get the best possible market-derived price, in the most efficient way, using your home when you want, and getting paid when you aren’t there. What could be better?