So you made the choice to rent a home (or a condo/apartment) rather than stay in a hotel for your next vacation. Now you may have some questions – How many bedrooms do you need? Do you want a pool? How about cable? Maybe you’re a fan of a big backyard and a patio? There are a lot of choices to make when renting a vacation home. But don’t fret – there are plenty of helpful resources available that make finding your ideal vacation home a breeze.
VRBO gives you the ability to search through their massive inventory of 540,000 vacation homes worldwide. The user-friendly website is filled with a plethora of tools to help narrow your search results. Probably the most useful part of the site is the filter tool within the search bar which provides a checklist of options to choose from such as- number of bathrooms, location type, property type, suitability and features- to help specify your results. With over 153 million visits in the last year, VRBO has not only gained credibility among renters, but also with vacation-home owners and property managers. A happy owner means happy renters.
The San Francisco-based travel community marketplace not only allows people to list their homes or apartments for rent, but they can also list individual private rooms within their property in order to “monetize their extra space.” Let’s say you’re taking a trip to Chicago with your significant other, rather than spending $200 a night for an entire home or apartment, Airbnb allows you to rent an individual room for much cheaper. For those sightseers looking to spend the least amount of time in your room while on vacation, this is the best bang for your buck.
Yelp was founded in 2004 to help people find great local businesses. But did you know that it can also offer some assistance in finding a vacation property? In the past 9 years, Yelp.com has established itself as one of the most reliable sources in terms of customer reviews with over 42 million travelers willing to offer up their opinions. Yelp gives you the ability to sort your results by highest rated or most reviewed. Positive customer testimonials are a huge stress reducer when trying to find a trusted rental property owner.
Chamber of Commerce Websites
This is one resource you may not have thought about utilizing. Chamber of commerce websites will not only give you rental listings, but these websites typically give you a synopsis of what the city you will be vacationing offers in terms of leisure, attractions, shopping, places to eat etc. The chamber of commerce is kind of a one-stop shop when planning a vacation.
While you know Craigslist as the best source for “free firewood” or used Xbox consoles, you may not know that it is good spot to find a vacation property. There’s actually an entire section dedicated to vacation rentals. The biggest advantage to searching on Craigslist is that a majority of the posts are submitted by the owner of the property. Rather than dealing with a third party, you’re typically interacting directly with the owners and property managers. We don’t suggest this as your first option, but if used correctly, it’s worth a look because you just may find a hidden gem.
The vacation rental industry has fully embraced the internet. It’s now possible to locate, virtually tour and book your next vacation property with a few clicks of your mouse. VRBO, Airbnb, Yelp and Craigslist all have mobile apps for your smartphone as well, making it even more convenient to look for your perfect rental property.
Do you have vacation plans? Share in the comments section below!