Property Management vs. Vacation Rental Management

by Apr 30, 2021Vacation Rental Management

As a property owner, it’s a smart idea to have a helping hand when it comes to keeping an eye on your investment properties. Whether it’s one property or a multitude of them, a manager can provide the eyes and ears as to how the property is doing. 

Managers assist with tasks that the owner is not able to or does not wish to handle themselves. Some owners either have too many properties to manage themselves, live in other states, or simply wish to automate their income properties. The manager of a property can range from friends, neighbors, or in many owner’s cases, they will contract a managing company to do the work. 

There are two different verticals of property managers: a property manager and a vacation rental manager. The two types do mostly the same things, but it is important as a property owner to know the differences. Here are some of those differences:

Property Managers

Property managers are a solution for investors who do not live near their rental properties or aren’t capable of dealing with their tenants on their own. They are usually hired to help manage rental properties that are entitled to a lease. 

The responsibilities of a property manager could include supervising the property which means keeping up with maintenance requests, communicating with the tenants on a regular basis, and keeping up with lawn care. Property managers may also provide services such as bookkeeping or listing your property, usually for an extra fee.

When the unit(s) are vacant on the property, the manager would advertise the unit, show it to potential clients, and deal with the process of signing the lease along with accepting rent and upfront fees. 

If the owner decides to hire a property management company, their services usually charge 10% of a property’s revenue for their services. 

Vacation Rental Property Management/Co-Hosting

Vacation rental managers are very similar to a property manager when it comes to keeping an eye on the property and business, but maintain a more active role in completely managing your vacation rental property, acting essentially as a co-host of the property. Their role is similar to that of a hotel manager, whereas traditional property management services act more as a landlord.

With a vacation rental property, most people rent it out to clients for a short amount of time, usually less than a week. Whether it be for a weekend or a whole month, however, the people who stay in vacation rentals are there for a temporary trip instead of permanent residence.

Vacation rental management services supervise the property just as a traditional property management service would by keeping up with maintenance tasks like a property manager, but also provide listing optimization and management, marketing and advertising services for the rental property, security checks, guest management, and more, to ensure that your property stays booked and maintained consistently. 

As guests come and go the manager also makes sure the property is clean, organized, and in tip-top shape. The vacation rental probably is too much for one person to handle, so the manager contacts cleaning crews, maintenance men, and lawn care companies to assist the state of the property. 

Vacation rental management services take the hassle out of guest services as well, allowing owners to truly automate their rental property revenue. The manager deals with the utility payments, service requests, and payments from the guests, so all the owner has to do is keep up with any ownership costs, such as mortgages, property taxes, homeowners insurance, and mortgage insurance. 

Some vacation rental management companies are property management companies that offer an additional service, while others are standalone full-service operations. Most vacation rental management companies will charge fees between 20-40% for full-service operations.

This increase in price (10% for property management vs. 20-40% for co-hosting/management) is due to the extra service hours and costs dedicated to managing and marketing the property online but usually provides for more bookings and more happy guests.

Here at Sunshine Co-Hosting, however, believe that all property owners should have the option to automate their vacation rental income. And at a flat rate of 10%, what a traditional property management service would cost, we believe in bringing that affordability to Southwest Florida. 

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