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Managing your rental enquiries

Turning the enquiry into cash:

  • *It is best to set up a standard booking form for your client to fill in. You can put all clauses and information in this for both parties to understand such as payment method and cancellation details.
  • *Should you like any suggestions on booking form (click here) for a general template.
  • *Be easily accessible whenever possible. Always check your emails and answer the contact number listed on your advert. Check your junk mail also, as some inquiries may have fallen in there.
  • *Respond quickly to inquiries as potential clients may have asked about several properties.
  • *Phone people when possible as emailing is not as personal. People like to speak to someone and you can answer questions better than in writing.
  • *If you do email an answer to an inquiry and you do not receive an answer within a reasonable period of time, show your enthusiasm and email again. Your email may have got lost or deleted by accident.
  • *Don't stick to hard fast rules. Talk to a client and if you can assist then they will always remember you and recommend your place to their friends and family. If a date they may want is taken then try and offer an alternative with some discount for example.
  • *Don't be afraid to ask questions of the client. Remember it is your home they are renting. You may not want to have stag weekends or hen parties for example.
  • *It is a good idea to keep a log of all inquiries. At a future date you may want to email past and potential clients with a special offer.
  • *Ask previous guest if you can use their name as a reference for the property.

Cancellations:

  • *Always set out cancellation clauses in your booking agreement. You may set up a timetable for a percentage to be refunded
  • *Before making any refund of payment, make sure their payment to you has cleared.
  • *Ask the client why they have canceled, as you may be able to offer an alternative period.
  • *Also remember that your client may have travel insurance that would cover their refund of deposit, so ask.
  • *Once the cancellation has been dealt with make sure you alter the booking calendar to show availability again.

Delivery or Collection of Keys:

  • *If you do not have a key holder at your property location then you will have to post them to the client.
  • *Always use recorded delivery.
  • *Send a stamped self-addressed envelope for the return of the keys.
  • *You may leave a set with a neighbour but again we suggest that you use a reputable management company. They can deal with check-ins at all times of the day or night.
  • *Make sure your client has detailed instructions of directions to the property and a contact number in case they get lost.

Listed are a few ways you can take payment for your bookings:

  • *In the booking form make sure you set out all the rules regarding payment procedure.
  • *If the payments do not arrive within that period, make sure to contact your client and let them know how long you will hold the booking.

Cheques:

  • *Some people still like to pay by cheque.
  • *Make sure they put a reference on the back of their cheque before sending.
  • *Make sure the cheque has cleared before the booking commences or keys have been sent.

Internet banking:

  • *Most people use Internet banking now and therefore with your bank details can make a transfer this way.
  • *Ask them to put a reference on the transfer so you know which booking to post it to.
  • *Transfers of this nature take about 3 working days.

PayPal:

  • *This is an easy way to collect payment. Go to www.paypal.com for further details.
  • *If you do not have an account with PayPal, it is simple to set one up. Make sure you read all of the information though, so it is easy for you to collect your funds from them.
  • *Clients can use their credit cards with this method, which many like to do.
  • *This is also an instant transfer to your account.

Bank Payment:

  • *If you use a high street bank then most likely, if your client is from the same country, there will be a branch in their town.
  • *With your account details they can walk into that branch and make payment into your account, which is also immediate.

Bank Transfer:

  • *If your guest is in another country then they can make payment by bank transfer.
  • *With your bank account IBAN number and SWIFT code transfer can be made from anywhere in the world to your account.
  • *Make sure to inform the client they will have to pay any bank charges for this.