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Airbnb, VRBO & others - renting event weeks

Discussion in 'Buying, Selling, Renting' started by swj, Dec 12, 2016.

  1. swj

    swj TUG Member

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    I own a timeshare during a high demand week. Where is the best place to rent the week? I've used craigslist in the past but want to expand my options. In my experience, many Craigslist users are looking for weekends only or are booking within 7-14 days. I'd like to rent this out earlier than that.

    What site would you recommend if I only have the one week to rent? What is easiest to join, easiest to post, lowest fees, least tire kickers, etc?
     
  2. theo

    theo TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    We very rarely rent out any of our weeks, but RedWeek has always been a consistently reliable and productive site when we have had to do so.
    Yes, you must first pay to become a RW member in order to place an ad there (currently $20 /yr. iirc) and you must also pay $30 per 6 month rental listing, iirc). However, time is money too --- and RedWeek attracts very few spammers or scammers or completely inexperienced inquirers (at least in my experience).

    YMMV, but I personally just do not have the patience to deal with Craigslist inquiries (and / or tire kickers) requiring a complete timeshare education, or seeking different dates or unit size (or location) than clearly specified in the ad, or offering an absurd "low ball" amount for a high demand / low availability prime week.

    Advertising in the TUG Marketplace is of course always a good available option as well; we have had success there too on occasion.

    For as rarely as we rent, I'm not interested in the convoluted conditions, unacceptable cancellation policies and (too high) cost of AirBnB and / or VRBO. YMMV.
     
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2016
  3. TUGBrian

    TUGBrian Administrator

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  4. DeniseM

    DeniseM Moderator

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    AirBnB and VRBO have high fees and liberal cancellation terms for the renter. IMNSHO, they are not a good match for timeshare rentals.

    I prefer TUG, and Redweek.
     
  5. MuranoJo

    MuranoJo TUG Member

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    Agree with Redweek and TUG, but I've also had an occasional rental from myresortnetwork.com as well. (My resortnetwork is free to viewers and only charges a small fee, ~$20, for the ad.)
     
  6. Robert D

    Robert D Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    I rent a lot of timeshare weeks and used to get most of my renters from Craig's List. I started using Airbnb last year and have been amazed as to how much business I get from it. It's now my biggest source of renters.
     
  7. Centurion

    Centurion Guest

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    I HIGHLY recommend AirBnB and even a free HomeAway.com ad. You just block out the rest of the year and your reserved week is available to rent at usually a high premium. You can set your cancellation policy so that they cannot cancel within 30-90 days or they forfeit a fee. Usually I set the forfeiture fee at the actual cost of the timeshare fee that year so if I cannot get a replacement - at least I get a free vacation or can let friends or family use it.
     
  8. Robert D

    Robert D Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    The problem I have with HomeAway is that their fees are double Airbnb. They charge a commission of about 3% and an additional 3% payment fee. Airbnb is only 3% total which I would pay for a credit card fee anyway. I don't understand how HomeAway can charge landlords twice what Airbnb charges when Airbnb is a lot better. I've also gotten a couple rentals from Flipkey which is Trip Advisor. They charge the landlord the same 3% as Airbnb.
     
  9. Centurion

    Centurion Guest

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    Thanks Robert. Yes, the fees are higher but I have noticed the demographics of the HomeAway people to be less young partiers and more families/retired folks. Not sure why that is. You can add the extra fee in your "cleaning fee" that you charge or another fee.
     
  10. Robert D

    Robert D Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    I try to price my rentals to market and there's only so much a renter will pay. If HomeAway's fee is higher, that directly cuts into how much you can rent your condo for. I've had zero problems with renters from Airbnb and most have been families.
     
  11. JudyS

    JudyS TUG Member

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    Question about AirBnB -- do you need a different listing for each week you have available? For example, suppose I've booked a week with check-in Saturday, December 23, 2017, and an identical week at the same resort for Saturday, December 30, 2017. I can figure out how to require that renters book at least 7 nights. But, there doesn't seem a way to make renters check-in only on Saturday, and stay in increments of exactly 7 nights. So, I could wind up with someone booking, say, December 25 - January 1, in which case I'd end up with only 7 of my 14 nights rented. And, my renter might have to move mid-stay.

    The only way I can figure around this is to have two separate AirBnB listings, one for each week.

    (By the way, I don't actually have those specific dates booked anywhere -- this is not intended as an ad.)
     
  12. Beefnot

    Beefnot TUG Member

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    In the example you describe, yes you would need two different listings. You can then for each listing show only 7 days available, have a minimum number of nights (say, 4 or 5), set whatever nightly rental you want, and then also set a weekly rental rate that would trump the cumulative nightly rentals. That way, whether someone rents for 4 nights or 7 nights, you get your target amount.
     
  13. sjsharkie

    sjsharkie TUG Member

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    AirBnb has a low fee to sellers, because they also charge a fee to the renter side. Also, they include taxes for certain counties you rent in -- even if the resort also collects taxes on their end. So, your renter will get double taxed in certain counties like Washoe (Lake Tahoe NV).

    While you can set your cancellation policy to a stricter one, beware that Airbnb in their judgement can refund fees for any reason they deem to be acceptable under their policy. They don't ask you the seller for approval -- they just do it. It happened to me -- go ahead and google "Airbnb extenuating circumstances". Zika threat in the area that you are renting 2 days before check-in? -- qualifies under their policy. Hurricane warning during hurricane season in the Carribean the day of check-in? -- qualifies under their policy.

    https://www.airbnb.com/help/article/1320/what-is-airbnb-s-extenuating-circumstances-policy

    So I agree with Denise. High fees and liberal cancellation terms do apply to Airbnb. Seller beware.

    -ryan
     
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2017
  14. Robert D

    Robert D Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    Actually, you don't need two listings. You can specify the minimum stay and also specify a specific check-in day. This can be done for the entire calendar on the listing or just for a date range on the listing. The Airbnb system is very powerful and flexible.
     
  15. Robert D

    Robert D Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    I totally disagree that Airbnb has high fees. They charge the landlord 3% and on the listings I've done, they've charged the renter as low as 6-7%. I pay 3% for a credit card fee via PayPal and this is included in the Airbnb fee. I've seen the comments about Airbnb's liberal cancelation policy but have not experienced that. I've probably done over 50 rentals on Airbnb over the last 14 months and have never had one canceled by Airbnb. I have had two canceled by the renter, one inside of a week which resulted in a forfeit of 100% of the rent and the other about 3 months before check-in which resulted in a forfeit of 50% of the rent and I was able to re-rent the condo for the same price. It's a lot easier dealing with cancelations because you don't have to deal directly with the renter when they ask for their money back, it's right in the Airbnb policy. The renter has to pay 100% of the rent to Airbnb when they book, even if it's 6 months in advance. When I first got on Airbnb over a year ago, I only did the 60 days super strict cancelation which has a fee of 5% vs. 3% for strict (50% refund if the renter cancels at least 7 days in advance). I had no issues with cancelations so I started using Strict and saved the extra 2% and still haven't had a problem.

    Regarding the comment that Redweek is better than Airbnb, I can only relate my experience as I'm on both sites for most of my rentals. I get at least 15x the rentals on Airbnb vs. Redweek. It's not even close and when you have last minute rentals, Airbnb can be incredibly effective.
     
  16. MOXJO7282

    MOXJO7282 Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    3% is very high compared to RW that has no forced cancellation policy. Paypal is optional and I don't use unless customer wants to pay the 3% otherwise I'm paying as little as .08% fees when you factor the membership and discounted ad fees for multiple ads comes to about $30 per rental. And with RW's 100% effective rate for me I don't see the need to use anything else but do wish I had another option that was as inexpensive so I don't have all my eggs in one basket. RW really kicks ass for me. Never ever failed to get me the rate I was looking for.
     
  17. Beefnot

    Beefnot TUG Member

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    Thanks, I misread the request. I thought she was seeking the ability to not require a specific check-in day, and perhaps allow for someone to check in a day or two later, as long as they checked out by a certain date. In that scenario, I wouldn't know how to do that on a single listing.
     
  18. sjsharkie

    sjsharkie TUG Member

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    We agree to disagree about the high fees and its great that it works for your rentals. It used to work well for me, but as I mentioned above, it is a less attractive option. Redweek and Airbnb are operating under 2 different models -- and IMHO it is getting tougher to fit my rental model under Airbnb as they grow and mature.

    Let's say the landlord side is a wash with credit card fees that we would normally incur, there is still a 6-12% tax on the renter side that Airbnb is taking. (Note: Yes, the renter side charge is as low as 6% as you point out, but you failed to mention it goes as high as 12%. IMHO, that is high versus a Redweek listing where I pay a flat fee.)
    https://www.airbnb.com/help/article/104/what-are-guest-service-fees

    Add this to the list of states/counties where they are collecting use tax. There is no way to alleviate the guest from paying twice -- so I need to inform them that they will pay on the Airbnb site a transient occupancy tax and the hotel will also collect one in certain cases: example Incline Village --> the guest pays Hyatt an occupancy fee of $5-10 per night, but they also pay Airbnb 13% of the rental fee. Yes, the guest is paying and yes, Airbnb is remitting that to the county, but that is still money that the guest is paying that is not going in your pocket. You can expect that as more states/counties put pressure on Airbnb, this list will grow. (FYI, entire state of FL is on the list)
    https://www.airbnb.com/help/article...collection-and-remittance-by-airbnb-available

    Finally, there is the extenuating circumstances clause -- the cancellation policy the landlord selects (i.e moderate, strict, etc.) has no bearing on this. I'll invite you to the Airhosts site where you can see examples of this being invoked. I'm not saying it is common, but I've done 30 rentals, and I've had 3 cancellations -- 1 of which where I got screwed at the last minute by the extenuating circumstances clause. If you rent long enough on Airbnb, it will happen to you and you will be at the mercy of Airbnb.

    Again, great it works for you. I still maintain that costs to use Airbnb are high.

    -ryan
     

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