MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - If you are considering listing your house on those popular home and vacation rental sites, here's a few tips you should consider before you upload photos of your property.
Tim Dietrich says he and his wife have been renting their two condos at the Myrtle Beach Resort for close to two years by using the site Vacation Rental By Owner, or VRBO.
"They stay full pretty much all year, whether we get our short-term, our weekly rentals, or our long-term, one to three months in the winter, we get them from there," Dietrich said about the website.
According to Consumer Reports, there are a few tips homeowners should considered before listing their properties on websites like Airbnb, Flipkey, Homeway and VRBO.
Make sure it's legal
There are restrictions and regulations in place for short-term rentals. It's a good idea to call your local city or county office to find out what applies to your area.
Think about insurance
You are now operating as a business, so make sure you're protected. Contact your insurance agent to find out what type of additional coverage may be needed to ensure protection.
Spruce it up
To help make your property more attractive to renters, consider a few upgrades.
Keyless locks are a bit pricey, but it will make the key exchange process much easier. Also, consider upgrading appliances, like coffeemakers and electric tea kettles, to make your guest feel more at home.
Speaking of feeling at home, consider a nice, comfy mattress and furniture, and even a modern decor. Dietrich said he added a few things to his condos and saw it helped with rental bookings.
"We've furnished them with new furniture, we've got all the kitchen appliances that they'll need, we provide beach towels," Dietrich said. "Essentially we've provided everything that they are going to need to enjoy the beach life."
He says on websites like VRBO, the guest's experience generates reviews on the website, which can make or break your vacation rental.
"We want great reviews and the bad reviews and I will tell you about one of our not-so-great reviews; they said the couch was uncomfortable so we went out and bought new couches for both units," Dietrich said.
Set your price
According to Consumer Reports, it's important for property owners to do their research to see what the going rate is in their area.