We put a list together to help protect the owner as well as the renter of the 10 Tips to know for vacation rental by owner. The list has 10 items and could easily be a lot longer. This is just a start, for more information you should get a book or do a lot more research on the internet. There are all kinds of lists out there.
- SCAM: The renter wants to pay more than you asked for because they have a traveler’s check, certified check, bank check, money order, etc. made out to more than they asked for. They tell you why they have a check (work check, estate check, wedding gift, etc.) and they want to use it with you. They will tell you they have a check for $3000.00 and you only want $2000.00. They will ask you to wire transfer the difference back to them. When was the last time you or somebody you know sent a check to a stranger for more than whats needed (ya right). Never ever wire money to a stranger for overpayment. Always tell them the check must clear before you rent to them and never accept payment from traveler’s checks, bank check.
- A clearly written lease agreement, verbal agreement means nothing. Not being a lawyer we will not define the legal terms. We do list some things below that we fell should be on the lease. There are plenty lease agreement examples on the internet. Just do a search for – vacation rental lease agreement.
- Check-in and checkout with dates and times. This needs to be clear on the lease agreement. Checkout Policy what is expected off them. Examples might include keys, condition, food, linens, etc.
- Find a reliable cleaning person. Personally I have a great cleaner that goes the extra step. Once my washer was broke, she took the sheets and towels home washed them and came back. Obviously I gave her a tip for this. Build a relationship, you need the place clean. Once during the slow season I let her and her family stay for 5 nights free. She got a nice vacation on a resort and of course the place was left immaculate.
- Pet policy – Should be on the lease. I get a lot of referrals because one of my neighbors does not except pets. I find a lot of retirees have small pets and I can’t afford to let my place stay unrented, so I take pets.
- Cancellation policy, total bill, payment schedule, storm policy, damage deposit refund, should all be on the lease.
- Age and number of Occupants
- Copy of their drivers license, I feel a lot better once I have their home address and home phone number. I now know it’s a real person and they aren’t hiding anything.
- Get their cell phone number in case you need to contact them during their stay.
- Emergency numbers – Police, hospital, fire, your contact information, other numbers that might be needed.
For vacation rental listings visit our Florida vacation rental listings and places to stay page.