Ward, Hayden

6 Vacation Rental Business Trends for 2021

With many continuing to work remotely, there is a new craving for travel and working on “vacation” which has opened up a plethora of opportunities for the short-term vacation rental industry. Simply creating an office space in your rental home, offering a contactless check-in, or being more flexible with your bookings, could increase your business earnings exponentially. The trends for 2021 are focused on safety and the “new” business traveler.

Six Trends for Vacation Rental Businesses in 2021:

1. Home Office Included in Property Layouts

Remote work and pod travelers are here to stay for 2021 and should be considered important guests to target in your marketing strategy. Taking the time to adapt your vacation rental to this audience is a good opportunity that can help your business generate a strong income.

If your property does not have adequate space for an office or at least a designated spot for comfortable laptop usage, it is a wise idea to reconfigure it. However, don’t focus your entire property on having an office space; people searching for a getaway are still expecting a leisurely experience. Airbnb has since stopped its distinct “Airbnb for Work” collection of properties and launched instead a much more simple “laptop-friendly” option.

We recommend creating a comfortable workspace equipped with paper, pens, pencils, and a printer. It’s best to locate this space somewhere with outlets nearby and USB charging ports. Above everything, you have to have quick and reliable Wi-Fi for your guests. Don’t forget to add these home office updates to your listing description and social channels, and upload photos.

2. Operational Technology

COVID-19 has sparked crazy advancements with operational smart technology for short-term vacation rental owners. Further, with listing platforms recognizing the need for contactless check-in, they have also made it much easier for guests to access the information they need upon check-in. Many popular listing platforms have a designated area on their site or app where you can put your check-in instructions for guests. Self-check-in is also a filter people can search on well-known booking sites, so if you offer this, definitely add it to your listing as an amenity.

Operational smart technology, like keyless locks and smart doorbells, makes it much easier to feel at peace when your guests arrive. Just make sure to change the code on your smart lock or keyless entry each time a guest checks out. These simple upgrades to your property can make a huge difference in your property’s listing and potentially result in more bookings.

Don’t forget that there are operational technology devices that can support cleaning protocols, team communications, occupancy monitoring, property care, water-leak detection, and property automation. For more information on smart tech devices, check out our post here!

3. Longer Stays

While there is a new interest in shorter trips to build travelers’ confidence, longer stays are not going anywhere anytime soon. With many still working remotely and online school arrangements, there is an increased desire for a change of scenery.

According to Booking.com, 37% of travelers have already considered working from a different destination. This allows people to combine work and leisure without having to rush everything they want to see and do within the weekend or a few days.

A great way to help keep guests booking longer stays at your property is to offer a discount for them. Many families and small travel pods are looking for getaways at properties for around two weeks.

4. Domestic Travel will Stay Robust

Brian Chesky, CEO of Airbnb, stated, "Wherever we go in 2021, for most of us, it won't be far from home. We will get in cars and travel nearby, dispersing to thousands of smaller cities, towns, and rural communities, making tourism an important part of how local economies recover."

More and more travelers are searching for domestic trips with unique experiences. With a recent spike in “toe-dip trips,” a short getaway to help rebuild travel confidence, people are staying closer and not booking huge bucket-list trips. They are interested in different types of unique properties such as farmhouses, cabins, glamping homes and yurts.

As more vaccines begin to roll out and are made available to the public, there has already been a noticeable spike in domestic traveling. Many of the searched for destinations are rural areas.

5. Flexibility with Bookings

With the current uncertainty among travelers, communication and transparency regarding bookings are crucial to succeeding in 2021. Cancellations, insurance and refunds have to be more flexible when it comes to your vacation rental. The importance of communicating this flexibility all to your potential guests cannot be overstated.

According to Forbes, travelers are booking spontaneous last-minute trips. The average number of days between booking to check-in is now 50 days, which is down -37.5% from the average pre-pandemic booking.

6. More Hotel-like Rentals

With a decrease of solo travelers and an increase in family and pod traveling, expect to see more hotel-like properties on the rise. Multiple unit properties with hotel-like features are going to become extremely popular, especially over the summer.

Though you may not have a mansion to cater to many guests, there are still several ways to create that same hotel-like experience at your property. It’s all about creating that vacation-relax mode supported by cleanliness and paying attention to your guests’ needs.

Here are some extra ideas that will help enhance that feeling of luxury:

  • Provide branded bathrobes for your guests.
  • Supply branded merchandise, such as hand sanitizer, coffee mugs, water bottles, or reusable bags to help guests remember their stay.
  • Stock each bathroom with toiletries such as toothbrushes, toothpaste, soap, lotion, and contact solution.
  • Have a signature scent for your short-term rental. Spray fresh sheets lightly with the scent and have an oil diffuser going before your guests’ arrival.

Equally as important, if not more so, is deep cleaning your property after each stay. Your guests expect the same standard of cleaning or better than what they would receive in a hotel. To help streamline your routine, check out our cleaning checklist.

Be Protected No Matter What

Whether your property sits high in the mountains overlooking a lagoon or shaded next to a secluded beach, we have you covered. To learn more about protecting your vacation rental business through CBIZ Vacation Rental Insurance, request a free quote.

This blog may contain scenarios that are provided as examples only. Coverage is subject to the terms, conditions and exclusions of the policy issued. The information provided is general in nature and may be affected by changes in law or the interpretation of such laws. The reader is advised to contact a professional prior to taking any action based upon this information.

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About Us

CBIZ Vacation Rental Insurance, a division of CBIZ Insurance Services,Inc., is the largest insurer of short-term vacation rental properties in the United States. As part of an $850 million New York Stock Exchange traded company (CBZ), we are the first broker to develop specific policy coverage to meet the needs for vacation rental properties and the amenities offered by these businesses. We have insured vacation rental properties since 2002.

The CBIZ Vacation Rental Insurance team knows insurance, specifically the risks and exposures related to short-term vacation rentals.We won't confuse you with technical "insurance speak" ~ our representatives are well versed in explaining your coverage in plain English. With hands-on, personal customer service, we guarantee swift communication and a 24/7 claims team that is ready to respond to your call any time of the day. As specialist in the industry, we leverage our knowledge and passion to ensure you and your business are adequately protected.