10 Tips for Renting Your Park City Vacation Home
By Joel Carson
Utah Real Estate P.C.
Thinking of renting out your Park City vacation home this year? Ski season is just around the corner and if you’re looking for a little extra cash, it’s a great idea; however, like any business, owning a rental unit requires some investment of time and money.
Here are 10 Tips to Help Vacation Home Owners:
- Begin advertising your Park City property for rent one year in advance. People like to plan ahead and sometimes need that much time to put in vacation requests at work, save money and explore their options.
- Hire a professional photographer to take pictures of your vacation home during the height of each season. Swap the photos six months before ski season and six months before summer. Show bedrooms, bathrooms and kitchen facilities in their best possible light.
- Remove your personal belongings. It isn’t safe or smart to leave personal belongings at your vacation rental property unless you plan to include the use of them in your rental agreement. If you do leave dishes, towels and linens, etc., take an inventory or have a nearby neighbor you trust help you before each guest arrives.
- Hire a property manager. The money you spend to hire a local property manager will be worth every cent. There are plenty of people in the area who are retired or resting in the off season. Check their credentials carefully and coordinate guest check-in/check-out, cleaning and maintenance as well as repairs through the manager.
- Collect a significant deposit when the reservation is made. Plans change. If you commit your luxury Park City home to someone and he or she changes plans at the last minute, you could be left with an empty house during a peak season. Business is business. Even if your renters are good friends, ask for a non-refundable deposit to ensure they follow through.
- Check going rental rates. Set the rent you charge at the local going rate for each season. Although properties are hot, hot, hot during ski season, many people are discovering the wonders of the Wasatch Back during the summertime too. Find a Realtor to help you conduct a market analysis.
- Keep it legal. Have an attorney draw up your rental agreement. Check it and re-check it. This is no time to count on boiler-plate Internet verbiage. Most people who own property around the resort spend serious money to buy and maintain their property. Make an investment in some legal assistance.
- Never allow a guest to enter your property without a signed contract. With email, scanners, fax machines and fancy phones these days there is no reason you can’t have a contract finalized before your guests ever arrive in Park City.
- Encourage repeat renters. It’s a nice feeling to know your renters. Once you have a satisfactory experience, it’s smart to encourage good renters to come back again and again. Offer a small discount for the second year. Throw in some lift tickets. Leave dinner coupons on the counter to welcome them “home.” Niceties are important and people love to feel spoiled when they’re on vacation.
- Schedule freebies during the off season. It could take a couple of years to know which dates are crucial to your vacation home rental business. It’s great to be good to family and friends; however, chances are they’re going to want to visit during your busiest seasons. Help them understand you’re more than willing to share, and lay the ground rules flat out.
Now is a great time to invest in a Park City vacation home or a Park City luxury home. My name is Joel Carson, President/Principal Broker of Utah Real Estate P.C. Browse through our Park City area properties online or call me today at 801-673-3333 for a tour and assistance in identifying your perfect home!