Boosting Summer Vacation Rental Bookings

April 4th, 2019 | By Mindy Timm

Phoenix vacation rental home owners often think it’s a good idea to just shutter their property and wait out the summer season – who wants to come to Phoenix in the summer, anyway? Actually lots of people  DO come to Phoenix in the summer, even if they are just passing through on their way to cooler temps than we have to offer. 

With our vast experience in the Phoenix area vacation rental home market, Moxie Girl can always be counted on for excellent tips for vacation rental home owners. We recently received an email from one of our valued clients, asking for tips to help her boost the summer bookings for her Valley vacation rental home – and we are happy to share our advice with you, too!

Here are a few things we’ve heard from our clients (vacation rental homeowners and professional property managers) whose properties in the Valley stay busy during the summer:

Use Multiple Rental Platforms

List your vacation rental home on multiple sites! Summer tends to have more road tripping guests and they use AirBNB a bit more than VRBO, so using at least both of these platforms to list your property “widens your net” for potential bookings.

Implement Active Tweaking

Rental platform sites all have algorithms that keep a secret eye on your listing activity and will boost more active properties to the top of relevant search results. Simply tweaking your prices on a weekly basis will help show the sites that you want your vacation rental to be listed higher than those of your competition!

Competitive Pricing

Speaking of competition, keep an eye on prices of your competitors – both vacation rental homes AND hotels/resorts in your area. One of the biggest mistakes we see vacation rental home owners make is to refuse to drop their prices in the summer.

Yes, offering your $199-a-night-during-peak-season vacation rental home for $89/night during the summer sounds painful, but if the nearby five-star resort with an amazing water park is offering $99/night, and a competitor’s vacation rental home down the street is listed at $89/night, then your home, listed at $199/night will most likely sit vacant.

It’s also important to think about what a potential guest sees when they look at a vacation rental home listing with a WIDE OPEN calendar – they may second guess if they should book with you based on that empty calendar alone (trust us, it’s a whole social validity/psychology thing.) Consider taking a couple reservations each month at deep discounts to get SOMETHING on your calendar. Having at least a couple bookings a bit in advance should help you attract more bookings, at regular summer prices.     

Another thing you may consider doing is to take “last minute” reservations – anything is better than nothing! If your vacation rental home calendar for an upcoming week is empty, drop the price and you may snag the budget road trippers!

Guests Are Guests

In our experience, lower prices do NOT equal lesser quality guests. The interactions that vacation rental homeowners or managers have with guests prior to arrival have far more impact than the nightly amount the guest will pay. Moxie Girl actually sees the most damage to homes when guests stay over 30 days because they really start to LIVE in the home.

Something is Definitely Better than Nothing!

To illustrate what busy vacation rental homes in the Phoenix area CAN do in the summer, let’s look at the 2018 summer season stats for three properties belonging to Moxie Girl clients. Please note that all three properties are professionally managed by local property managers – it really helps to specifically “tuned-in” to Phoenix summer vacation rental market.

Remember, NO bookings equals ZERO income for your vacation rental property. So, even if your rental home is only booked for close to half of the days in each summer month – and even at summer rental rates – that income will go a long way in covering the regular, monthly expenses that come with rental ownership. (Mortgage payments, HOA fees and utilities don’t go away, even if you do “close” your rental for the summer!)

Check out the number of nights BOOKED for each of these vacation rentals:

 

Property MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP
4Bed/4Bath

North Scottsdale

14 21 16 15 26
4Bed/2.5Bath

Scottsdale

12 11 18 12 10
4Bed/3Bath

North Scottsdale

16 17 26 18 22

 

Need More?

Be sure to check out our other blogs filled with even more helpful tips for a successful summer rental season!

Summer Vacation Rentals – Moxie Girl Debunks the Myths

Tips for a Successful Summer as a Vacation Rental Home Owner

Poolside Perfection – Chat with Chad Nikkel of Aquaman Pools

5 Sizzling Summer Tips for Vacation Rentals with Pools

Moxie Girl would love to be YOUR vacation rental specialist – just click for a FREE CONSULTATION!