Back in college, I had multiple friends who took amazing internships in Orlando, FL. They worked (read: played) at our favorite theme parks, met amazing friends, and made a minuscule salary while living in dorm-like accommodations. Not my cup of tea, unfortunately. When I went to visit my friend, Mary, one summer, I decided to splurge and rented a small vacation property instead of crashing on her floor. I am so glad I did. The perks offered to me by the property manager were more than worth the cost of the rental, and I ended up having a fantastic vacation experience.
Orlando is a prime destination for vacation rentals -- with warm, sunny weather, Disney theme parks nearby, Universal Studios, and some of our nation's most beautiful beaches just a short drive away. It’s a smart place to invest in a vacation home because you’re sure to attract renters year-round.
There are things, though, you can do to enhance your return on investment (ROI) even further. Vacation rental perks are a super effective way to boost ROI, particularly in the long term. We've found those “little extras” can go a long way toward turning a one-time guest into a returning guest. You can also mention your perks in your marketing materials -- just one more way to help your property stand out from the crowd.
So if you're ready to increase your Orlando vacation rental’s ROI, try offering a few of the following guest perks.
1. Theme Park Passes
Orlando's theme parks are a huge draw to Central Florida vacation rentals, so you may consider including a couple theme park passes as part of your rental. This will sweeten the deal for anyone considering your property.
Disney tickets are typically transferable to your guests (though the same person needs to use all of the days on a given ticket). What's more, Florida residents get fairly significant discounts on Florida theme park ticket prices, so purchasing passes to provide to your guests may not be as pricey as you'd imagine.
Property management companies in Orlando should know the ins and outs of purchasing these passes, how to get discounts, and how to transfer the tickets so your guests can use them.
2. Welcome Baskets
When guests choose a rental property, they're generally seeking a bit more pampering and luxury than what they would experience in a hotel. So make their stay memorable by providing a welcome basket, along with another gift basket that can be delivered mid-way through their stay. You can opt for a tried-and-true fruit basket or something more creative and unique. Whatever you pick, just be sure it's something that's apt to appeal to your average guest.
A few ideas:
Sun and fun basket: Small pool toys or inflatables for the kids, a couple of beach blankets, and sunscreen.
Pampering bath basket: Bath oil, bubble bath or a bath bomb, a scented candle, a natural sponge, and lotion.
Chocolate lover's basket: Assorted chocolates, hot cocoa, and other related gourmet food items.
Wine and cheese basket: Wine or champagne, a pair of wine glasses or champagne flutes, and cheese.
Many property management companies are often happy to store and deliver non-perishable gift baskets. This is a great choice if you prefer to select the contents and make up the basket yourself. Or you can work with a local provider to handle the delivery.
3. Discounted Dining
Choose a few popular nearby restaurants and negotiate for a special discount for your guests. Most restaurants are happy to make up a special coupon offer or promo code for your guests if it means more business.
Just be sure to choose restaurants that are apt to appeal to your average guest. For example, if you cater primarily to families, be sure that most of the restaurants you choose are family friendly.
A clever variant of this entails striking a deal with a local grocery delivery provider so you can offer an attractive freebie, like a promo code for $75 of free groceries that can be delivered to the property.
Many vacation property management companies likely have relationships with local restaurants and grocery providers and can easily set these perks up for you to offer guests.
4. Babysitting Services
Orlando vacation rentals are a big appeal for families. But there are times when Mom and Dad can benefit from a bit of alone time.
You or your property manager can contact a local babysitting service provider and strike up a partnership that will allow you to offer a free evening of childcare to your guests. You should be able to arrange to have the babysitting service bill you directly, and if you're savvy, there's a good chance you can also negotiate a discounted rate since you'll be providing them with regular business.
The babysitting service provider may also offer discounts for any additional childcare services in case your guests decide they need a bit more time away from the kids.
5. Loaner Items
Loaner items can range from a car or SUV that's made available to your guests, to pool toys, bicycles, pet beds, fishing rods, and anything else your guests can enjoy. Think of the items that a guest is forced to leave at home or rent, and consider providing these to your guests as loaner items.
Purchasing loaner items can be tricky because these items tend to be more vulnerable to theft and damage. But these risks can be largely remedied if you charge a damages and theft deposit and have a good property manager who can take an inventory before and after every guest's visit.
How Perks Translate into ROI
When coming up with ideas for Orlando vacation rental perks with the best ROI, most ideas will fall into one of two categories: perks that make potential guests more likely to choose your rental property or perks that enhance the guests' experience, making them more likely to return in the future.
The key for offering perks that boost ROI is to choose perks that your guests are likely to actually use. They're going to appreciate anything that makes them feel pampered, offers greater convenience, or helps them save time and money. We've found that the best perks do all three.
We’ve also found that it’s not always easy to manage these perks when you’re also trying to maintain your property, bookings, and everything else that goes along with renting out your home. It can be very helpful to rely on your property management company to purchase, deliver, and maintain these perks. At Rented.com, we specialize in helping vacation homeowners find the right rental property management company. Get started on your search by creating a private profile on our site. From there, you can choose the property manager that can best work with you to keep your property -- and all of the other details -- in order.
Lead image: Flickr CC user Ricardo’s Photography