How to hire the right vacation rental property manager

Are you planning to use your second home as a vacation rental to make extra income? Maybe you’re renting it out yourself on Airbnb and feel overwhelmed by day-to-day tasks. If so, hiring a vacation rental property manager could be the best personal and financial decision you make.

But you don’t want just anyone managing your Airbnb or vacation home. Finding and hiring the right vacation rental manager will save you countless headaches and increase the net value of your home in the long run. You want a company that takes care of every detail you can imagine without locking you into an exclusive long-term contract.

Why you should hire the right vacation rental manager over any vacation rental manager

When you look at the time, energy, and money involved in managing a vacation rental—it’s easy to see how quickly it can turn into a second job. An owner who manages their vacation rental themselves spends on average 30 hours per month on marketing, cleaning, property maintenance and upkeep, handling reservations, and restocking toiletries.

Full-service management companies, like Vacasa, will handle everything while earning you more revenue. This includes the marketing and rental logistics like promoting your home, pricing it accurately, confirming reservations, regularly inspecting the property’s condition, and providing professional, local 24/7 guest service.

Don’t settle for less than the best for your home and your peace of mind. The right vacation rental manager is part marketing genius, part data scientist, and part concierge. They’re also a good neighbor, with risk-screening procedures in place to help keep your property, your community, and your guests safe.

vacation home in Phoenix, AZ

Signs of a good vacation rental property manager

With many vacation rental managers advertising similar services, it’s difficult to know which are better just by looking at their websites. Consider the following when narrowing your choices.

The size of their staff and their rental portfolio

A vacation rental manager with a sizable portfolio probably has a good rapport with homeowners and understands the basics of successful vacation rental management.

However, portfolio size can be misleading. They might manage a lot of homes, but might not have enough staff for 24/7 guest support. This is crucial during peak season when turnaround time between bookings is much shorter. Otherwise, it could result in negative reviews.

You want a vacation rental manager who can appropriately scale their staff and operations to be on site at a moment’s notice. At Vacasa, we use predictive analytics to staff our professional local teams based on market demand, whether it’s during peak season or for a big conference during the slow season. Every home and guest gets the best individual care before and during every stay.

Their knowledge of digital marketing and online booking channels

Competition for bookings is fierce. Airbnb and have over 32 million property listings alone. There could be dozens—maybe hundreds—of similar rentals in your market booking on the same night with better listings, better prices, and better reviews.

Your vacation rental manager should know how booking channels work and how to optimize your listings so they stand above the crowd. They should also be on more than a few sites. Do a quick search on Airbnb and Vrbo for their properties. If you can’t find them, or they don’t show up until the second or third page of search results, you should look elsewhere.

two people at a business meeting

Vacation rental property management contracts and fees

How much are vacation rental property management fees?

Depending on the location and breadth of services, vacation rental property management fees can range from 12% to 50% of your rental income.

The biggest trap is settling for a vacation rental manager who promises higher short-term returns for a lower management fee. While lower fees may feel like a better deal, you usually end up paying much more in fees for additional services, and a great peak season doesn’t mean much if your home is empty for the rest of the year.

Contracts are a pain point for many vacation homeowners because of the above scenario. A year-long contract with a manager who can only book 4 months of the year is a net negative, plus the operational costs and security concerns of bringing outside vendors into your home to clean the carpets or fix the A/C.

When looking at your budget, consider the long-term benefits of hiring a full-service vacation rental manager who can do it all and provide hotel-quality services that guests expect. If you plan on selling your vacation rental, a full booking calendar will help justify a higher asking price.

The best option is to hire a premium full-service vacation rental manager like Vacasa

Entrusting a vacation rental manager with your second home or investment property is a big decision. You want assurances that it will get the care it deserves, and it will achieve the growth you have planned for it. You also want to be able to enjoy it when you come back to visit.

You can have all that and more with Vacasa.

As a Vacasa homeowner, every guest will experience the best of your home. Our housekeepers and hospitality experts are professional local Vacasa employees. They receive competitive wages and benefits like 401(k) with a 6% match and 100% health insurance coverage. They care for your home like it was their own.

You’ll also maximize your rental income. Our industry-leading rate-setting technology automatically adjusts to local market conditions in real time—similar to the airline and hotel industry—so your vacation home books at the best price every night.

And because we partner with top booking channels like Airbnb, Vrbo, and Google, it’s easier than ever for guests to find and book your home.

Have questions about worry-free renting while maximizing your revenue? Connect with a local Homeowner Consultant via phone or email.

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If you'd like to move forward, we’ll put you in touch with our market expert in your neighborhood to explore the financial potential of your home, outline our management fee, and introduce your local team.


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Vacasa offers property management and other real estate services directly through Vacasa LLC and through Vacasa LLC's licensed subsidiaries. Click here for more information about Vacasa's licensed real estate brokerage/property manager in your state. Vacasa’s licensed real estate brokerages/property managers include: Vacasa Alabama LLC; Vacasa Arizona LLC; Vacasa Florida LLC; Vacasa Louisiana L.L.C. (licensed in Louisiana); Vacasa Michigan LLC, 947-800-5979; Vacasa Nevada LLC; Vacasa New Hampshire LLC, P.O. Box 283, Conway NH 03818, Dave Grant, Broker of Record; Vacasa New Mexico LLC, 503-345-9399; Vacasa New York LLC, 888-433-0068, Susan E. Scanlon, Real Estate Broker; Vacasa North Carolina LLC; Vacasa Pennsylvania LLC; Vacasa Real Estate Corporation, California DRE #02105811, Joseph Czapkowicz, California DRE #01380722; Vacasa Real Estate LLC (licensed in Colorado, Daned Kirkham); Vacasa Real Estate LLC (licensed in Idaho, Oregon, and Utah); Vacasa Real Estate LLC (licensed in Tennessee, 615-671-9916); Vacasa Real Estate LLC (licensed in Washington, Robert Brush, Designated Broker); Vacasa South Carolina LLC; Vacasa Tennessee LLC; Vacasa Vacation Rentals of Hawaii LLC, 3350 Lower Honoapiilani Road, Suite 600, Lahaina, HI 96761; Vacasa Vacation Rentals of Montana LLC, Patrice Tompkins, Licensed Property Manager; Vacasa Virginia LLC; Vacasa Wisconsin LLC.