On-Time is the Best Time

May 21st, 2019 | By Mindy Timm

Sometimes vacation rental guests will break the rules…Thankfully, it’s been Moxie Girl’s experience that rule-breakers tend to be the exception, rather than the standard. And many times, the rules that are broken tend to be the ones that don’t seem like “that big of a deal” – to the guest anyway! Guests not adhering to check-in/check-out times is without a doubt the most frequent issue we see.

Unless you take a firm position on arrival and departure times at your vacation rental home, it’s easy for guests to think, “I know we’re supposed to be out of here no later than 11am, but another hour should be okay…” or “Check in isn’t until 4p, but I’m sure it won’t be a problem if we get there at 2.” Not a big deal, right?

Actually, it IS a very big deal when there are a limited number of hours before the next guests arrive! Moxie Girl, your vacation rental specialist, is well aware of how late check-outs and early check-ins can affect the “turn” at your vacation rental home.

Awkward…

Most of us Moxies have had a least one weird experience with either late check-outs or early check-ins. I was turning a smaller condo in Old Town Scottsdale once and the owner called to inform me that the guests arriving that day (scheduled for 4p) had her permission to “drop their bags” a few hours early since they had traveled from Canada and had lots of luggage, since they were staying for two weeks. Sure, no problem!

The bedrooms and bathrooms (upstairs) were done and I was just finishing up the kitchen when the guests showed up. I pointed them in the direction of the stairs, expecting them to drop their bags and head out. I busied myself checking on the progress of the laundry, which was in another building.  Well, the laundry wasn’t done, and the guests were still upstairs. Started in on dusting the living room…surely they’ll be out of here in just a…Wait. What? Did I just hear the shower turn on? Yup. That was the shower, alright…and here comes the “missus” to explain that her husband was just going to take a quick shower before they head out, so she’s just going to make a little snack while she waits. Oh…turns out they had groceries already, too.

Thankfully there wasn’t much more to be done that day, and I just worked my way through the rest of the living room and finished the laundry. Under the circumstances, I really didn’t have the heart to turn them out…I mean they were soooo nice – Canadians, you know.

An Invitation for “Cleaning Misses”

Sure, that little encounter turned out just fine and no harm done (although I did report the early check-in vs. the “bag drop” I’d been told to expect, just to be safe) but late check-outs and early check-ins can both affect the quality of service between guests, often leading to cleaning “misses,” the likes of which we brought to your attention in our blog, “Review Killers.” Moxie Girl believes EVERY guest should walk into a sparkling clean, as-perfect-as-we-can-make-it vacation rental home, and we schedule accordingly, to make that happen.

Not that we can’t handle a little pressure, but it can certainly be an issue when we lose any of the time we’d planned to spend due to guests not checking out on time, or arriving hours early. Unlike hotel room turns, vacation rental property turns are a lot more involved – we’re talking full laundry, multiple bathrooms (and beds) plus a full kitchen! And more often than not, guests have dug in for at least a few days with no housekeeping.

For Example…

We recently had a team of two Moxies doing a same-day turn on a rather large (4 bedroom, 3 bath) vacation rental home with about 2 hours of work left to be done when guests arrived! The push was on to get the home up to Moxie standards in a lot less time than we thought we had, while the way-too-early guests “hung out at the pool.”

Thankfully, a third Moxie was able to get to the location and help with finishing up and do a final walk-through…otherwise the guests would have found we’d missed cleaning the inside of the microwave (yuck!) and trash left in one of the bedrooms (double yuck!) We’d NEVER want a guest to find either or those things – and we know you wouldn’t either!

What You Can Do

Be sure your check-in and check-out times are clearly posted – both on your rental platform listing as well as inside the home. Some vacation rental homeowners send a text reminding guests of check-out time the evening before they’re due to leave. Yes, it may feel like you’re “playing mom” with your guests, but they may also appreciate the head-up more if you start with “Hope you’ve been having a fabulous stay! Just a reminder…”

Guests wishing to extend their stay are not unusual. If your booking schedule allows another night or two, don’t forget to keep your cleaners in the loop! Also be sure to tell us if you’ve “approved” a late check-out or early check-in so we may adjust our schedule accordingly.

Need Help with Your Vacation Rental Home?

Moxie Girl is The Valley’s Vacation Rental Specialist! From conversion and set-up to in-between guest cleaning – including same day turns – you can count on Moxie Girl for professional, reliable service! Contact us for a FREE CONSULTATION!