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Lodging Update November 30th, 2017

By Wm. May
Published: 11/30/17 Topics: Advertising, Dynamic Pricing, Housekeeping, Vacation Rentals Comments: -

Jeff Bainer of Kittitas County Washington State may know nothing about the vacation rental industry, but he does know all about monster trucks.

The Yakima Herald-Republic newspaper reports that Bainer is a member of the Monster Truck Hall of Fame. Who knew there was such a thing?

Fans of monster trucks know of Jeff's first truck "Hot Stuff" which was launched in 1986, and later rebuilt into a humongous red jeep, said to be the world's largest.

Today he considers himself to be semi-retired because he transports, races and wins "only" 17 events per year, around the country. Who knew there were even that many?.

Bainer makes a comment that is just as relevant to the Vacation Rental business as it is to monster trucks. "Our industry has changed so much in the last three years." It has gone from an industry of independent drives to one dominated by a single company.

As the vacation rental industry has also morphed into something different than what it was just a few years ago. Luckily for us, the big guys are making big mistakes. Smaller vacation rental managers who band together have far more to offer by operating locally while also marketing globally.


Just like Monster Trucks, Vacation Rental management is changing fast. Innovation has always been at the heart of business. In some industries bigger can be better, but vacation rentals are the opposite. It requires stellar onsite services combined with today's technological tools to advertise globally.

Big Company #1 - has been around for decades, being sold from one conglomerate to another, charging high commissions and loading their overhead with "executives" who do more talking than they do cleaning toilets. Today the company is again for sale to the highest corporate bidder. No where do they promote the sale as better for property owners and guests. In effect, they are selling their property owners short.

Big Company #2 - Likes to buy up local competitors and then discard the local personal touch. They promise technological competence and dynamic pricing which is really no different than what savvy local managers can provide. They offer a comprehensive fee, but supplant it with undisclosed fees, resulting in a large class action law suit. Staff members come and go resulting in HUNDREDS of livid online complaints.

Big Company #3 - Offers a low commission but "manages" from hundreds or thousands of miles away. Owners are forced to find local housekeepers, maintenance staff and hosts because, as the Big 3# spins it, those people are cheap and desperate to work for you. How predatory. The heart of every lodging are the hard-working, loyal, committed and friendly people who do the heavy lifting and are on call 24/7. Then when this company gets a complaint, they blame it on the owner and the local staff.

Big Company #4 - Also promises a lower commission and secret technology to advertise rentals worldwide and on major websites. They fail to admit that all top local managers can now meet or beat their advertising distribution, dynamic rates and photos. They also fail to disclose that they are encumbered with greedy venture capital that requires growth at all costs, even if their services are not up to snuff locally.

Our Company - If you like some of the big company capabilities, but fear the lack of personal local service to care of your valuable vacation home, there is good news. We offer the best of both worlds.

Our well tenured local partners live nearby to keep close track of your place. Our world-class back office professionals provide compelling websites, superior software, dynamic rates, stunning HDR photos as well as 3D tours, not to mention courteous quick sales and reservations, topped off with attentive guest and owner services. Although our first office opened in 1964, we have tech tools none of the big guys have even dreamed of yet.

For our clients we must admit the industry is not perfect and duties are relentless, but we promise to keep investing more time, money and commitment per house than those big guys.

If you are not yet a client, we make you the same promise - lower fees and greater service. Call today. Why wait?

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Author: Wm. May, Vortex Managers
Blog #: 0572 – 11/30/17
Sponsor: Vortex Organization – We train quality people to help run unique Inns, Resorts and Vacation Rental Management companies, in an industry that has been a webby net of technology combined with good old fashioned property, guest and owner services. –

Vacation Rental Picante Sauce

By Wm. May
Published: 09/01/17 Topics: Property Management, Vacation Rentals Comments: -

What do Picante Sauce and Vacation Rentals have in common? Well they gotta be fresh and tended to. Can managers from hundreds and thousands of miles away provide adequate service to discerning property owners. Not hardly. Read more

Wonderful Puerto Morelos on the Yucatan

By Ron Lee
Published: 09/01/17 Topics: Inns, Mexico, Vacation Rentals Comments: -

Although still a fishing village, the government declared the reef area and mangroves an ecological preserve with the intent to locals to keep development to a minimum. But comfort and fun are at a maximum. Read more

Hire a Crack Head to Clean your Home

By William May
Published: 03/01/17 Topics: Housekeeping, Vacation Rentals Comments: -

Not all job applicants will be dedicated to our industry. Many applicants just want a quick buck to pay for their habits. That is more common than you might imagine. And home owner will never know until the druggie goes missing along with assets from their home. Read more

Extortion and Anti-Dispargement Defense

By Ron Lee
Published: 01/17/17 Topics: Vacation Rentals Comments: -

Christopher Elliott, self admitted one-sided advocate, writes that businesses should lose their right to prohibit defamation and thereby extortion. Trained journalists rely on freedom of the press but employ the kind of fair-minded journalists standards reporting that Elliott ignores. Read more

Grading Vacation Rentals on the Curve

By Wm. May
Published: 10/01/16 Topics: AirBnB, Vacation Rental Association, Vacation Rentals Comments: -

Research has showed that average ratings on AirBnB are a full one start higher than the number of stars for homes on this mean that only the better homes are listed on AirBnB? Nah,. Just the opposite. Read more

Chim Chimney! What to Know on Chimney Sweeping

By William May
Published: 01/01/16 Topics: Vacation Rentals Comments: -

It’s that time of year to curl up around a warm fire - New Years has just happened, the weathers getting a little chilly, maybe there’s a light dusting of snow on the lawn. You open the flue, light your kindling, and wait for the romantic crackling to start. But then you start wondering: when was the last time you got the chimney swept?! Read more

Vacation Rental Restoration

By William May
Published: 12/28/15 Topics: Insurance, Property Management, Vacation Rentals Comments: -

Vacation rental homes are susceptible to the same problems as full-time residences. Sometimes pipes break, basements flood and even smoke or fire damage can happen. Read more

Expedia to buy Homeaway

By Ronald Lee
Published: 11/05/15 Topics: Advertising, AirBnB, Vacation Rentals Comments: -

There’s always a bigger fish. Serial purchaser Homeaway has itself been acquired by Seattle based Expedia. Read more

How Much Vacation Rental Insurance Do You Need?

By April Klazema
Published: 09/01/15 Topics: Insurance, Property Management, Vacation Rentals Comments: -

When you are looking to buy vacation rental insurance coverage for the first time, you will likely have a laundry list of different questions that you want answered. Here are the answers. Read more

Do I Need to Get Special Insurance for My Condo or Vacation Home?

By April Klazema
Published: 08/01/15 Topics: Insurance, Property Management, Vacation Rentals Comments: -

If you rent out your property to vacationers or other tenants when you are not using it, then it cannot be protected under a homeowner's policy. If you are accepting money to allow someone to stay at your vacation home, learn heard about the insurance you must have. Read more

Special Insurance for My Condo or Vacation Home?

By April Klazema
Published: 07/01/15 Topics: Insurance, Property Management, Vacation Rentals Comments: -

If the purpose of the vacation home is for personal use only, then a homeowner's insurance policy will be sufficient to cover the property. But if you rent your home to guests on a nightly, or week basis that insurance is insufficient. Read more

The Vacation Rental Property Insurance Difference

By April Klazema
Published: 06/01/15 Topics: Insurance, Property Management, Vacation Rentals Comments: -

Most insurance companies will offer a specific vacation rental insurance policy that you can purchase to protect your rental properties. A vacation rental property may look like a home, but in the eyes of an insurance company, it's a business. Read more

Creepy Vacation Rental Videos

By Wm. May
Published: 05/27/15 Topics: Marketing, Vacation Rentals, Videos Comments: -

Videos are now being used as background graphics for many websites including for vacation rental advertising that depict guests inside homes in seemingly innocent moments like lounging bed or playing with their children. But does it cross the line? Read more

Welcome to the New

By William May
Published: 04/01/15 Topics: Ocean Shores WA, Vacation, Vacation Rentals Comments: -

Since 1996, has been the center of everything about the city of Ocean Shores and the North Beaches of Washington State. Now it is getting bigger better, and faster. Read more

Mouse in the house. Or Rats, Bears, Ants, Termites, Cockroaches, etc.

By William May
Published: 03/01/15 Topics: Property Management, Vacation Rentals, Wildlife Comments: -

Because second homes are not occupied at all times, pesky mice, rats, ants, cockroaches, bears, and other unwanted creatures have a sixth sense of knowing they are good targets. They give little warning which are unpredictable but easily resolved. Here is how. Read more

Expert Says Photos Best Return on Investment

By Joseph Romain
Published: 02/01/15 Topics: Marketing, Photography, Vacation Rentals Comments: -

Matt Landau, founder of has some surprising insights into the top 10 steps that can help property owners and managers increase bookings and revenue. His research reveals much about photography. Read more

How to Hire & Retain Happy Housekeepers (10 rules)

Published: 01/28/14 Topics: Property Management, Vacation Rental Association, Vacation Rentals, WAVRMA Comments: -

Servers at restaurants, both fancy and plain, demand tips. The valet who parks your car puts his hand out. Even your neighborhood Starbucks barrista wants money for making up your fancy café mocha, skinny, double cup, with foam. So how come lodging housekeepers seldom get tipped, and often receive far too little. Read more

DETAILS: We work to keep this information up to date, but details do change from time to time based on circumstances, often on short notice, and sometimes beyond our control. To verify any answer or other information you may need, please call or email us anytime. Allow a reasonable amount of time for response. Only legitimate inquiries will be answered.