The vacation rental business has grown significantly over the past years, especially after global relief from the pandemic. More people are now looking for peaceful places, away from their busy cities, to pass their holidays. However, as lucrative as the business may look, property owners and managers are getting it rough vetting guests and maintaining their businesses. This is where the property management system (PMS) comes in handy.
Are you a holiday property owner or manager looking for an effective way to run your business? Why not incorporate the best vacation rental management software and let it do all the weightlifting? This article provides everything about the software and why professional property managers need it.
What Is Holiday Rental Management Software?
Holiday or vacation rental management software is a technological solution designed to specifically facilitate the routine operations of short-term or long-term rental properties. In simple words, the software allows the remote management of rentals.
With this system, property owners or managers can handle all the tasks from their desktops or phone-enabled apps. These tasks include managing listings on multiple channels, assigning duties to responsible staff, analyzing business performance, and communicating with guests.
Features of a Holiday Rental Management System
Holiday property management platforms (PMP) centralize all major aspects of a short-term rental while simplifying its activities. However, these platforms may differ in features based on the size of the business or properties involved.
For instance, while some software may focus on individual renters, others work best in company-owned rentals due to their magnitudes. Though, here are the basic features to expect from a vacation rental management system.
1. A channel manager
Channel manager is a must-have tool for property managers who handle multiple listings on different booking platforms. The tool simplifies inventory management by syncing calendars across all channels. This way, property managers can check and update essential aspects of their listings, including pricing and descriptions across all channels and avoid double bookings.
2. Centralized calendar
A centralized calendar tool allows property managers to view all the past, current, and upcoming reservations from one tab. This is possible regardless of the location or time of booking.
3. Automation tools
Automation tools allow short-term property managers to automatically adjust prices according to seasons and preset rules, create and assign tasks to staff, process payments, respond to guest inquiries, and send vital information.
4. Online booking site builder
Some vacation rental management systems come with built-in booking websites that allow guests to book reservations online and independently. These websites pull all the listings from their database and display them on direct booking sites. In cases where there are no branded site builders, clients can integrate their existing websites with the software through provided APIs.
5. Owners portal
Owners portals allow property owners to view relevant property aspects such as reservation schedules and block some reservations for their uses.
6. Payment processing tools
These tools are crucial for reservations made outside online booking channels. They generally secure payment processes for individual reservations or other guest charges.
Why Professional Property Management Agencies Need Vacation Rental Management Software
Professional property management agencies understand how stressful it can be to run a profitable holiday rental business. For this reason, they will do anything to automate their operations and raise profit margins through a property management system (PMS). Therefore, among others, here are the main reasons why they need vocational short-term rental software.
1. To save time
The primary purpose of incorporating PMS into the vacation rental business is to save on time spent on repetitive tasks like responding to guest messages, reviewing reservations, and checking the overall business performance. With a built-in channel manager, property managers can review their listings on all channels simultaneously and prevent overbooking. Unified inboxes also allow smooth communication between guests and managers, which enhances the guest experience.
2. To grow the business’s outreach
An effective PMS allows businesses to reach newer and wider markets by effectively marketing and listing properties on third-party distribution channels like Booking.com, Expedia, Vrbo, and Airbnb. Property managers can also add as many platforms and accounts as they want and still use a central unified dashboard to manage all the aspects.
3. To build long-lasting relationships with guests
With a direct booking website and booking engine, property managers can effectively build long-lasting relationships with guests. This is possible through direct communication with guests, which allows agencies to offer discounts to guests and save on commissions paid to third-party channels. Professional property management agencies can also have more control over the business, which allows them to display quality content, set up cancellation and damage policies, and determine reservation duration.
4. To access real-time reports
An effective PMS also allows managers to evaluate sales, occupancy levels, bookings, and profit-expense ratios for investors and hosts. The results are then displayed in real-time reports, which allow investors to review their business’s performance, optimize their working strategies, and come up with a long-term profitable plan.
Do you think it is time to bring vacation rental management software into the game? Of course, using a PMS will scale up your holiday rental business significantly and handle all your repetitive tasks without much hassle. However, before getting any software to your business, you need to consider vital factors such as its ease of use and integration with other systems, costs, features, and customer support.