Posts Tagged With: vacation rental

The End, Again

  We have reached the end of our stay in Augusta. Yes, February is a short month but it sure feels like time has gone very quickly during this stay. It’s probably because I was traveling during most of our stay and then we were sick.

We have really enjoyed our time here and will most likely return very soon. We have even offered to buy this house should they decide to sell. No, we would not live here permanently, it would be a home base and vacation rental.

There’s this little event called The Masters that happens in Augusta every April which makes it a prime vacation rental hot spot. Plus, it’s a pretty cool place to hang out.  The doggies have really enjoyed our walks in this urban setting. There are big windows to look out, a big porch to lounge on, and a great fenced in yard to poop in. 

Stay tuned for a video review of this property.

-Jodi

Categories: Augusta | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Finding the Secret Beaches

  
Like most people, we figured that we couldn’t or wouldn’t be willing to pay the price for a beach house. But, if you are flexible with dates and willing to stay in the less known beach towns, most everyone can find a home to fit their needs and budget.

  
This is a beautiful 3000 sq ft home right on Treasure Beach in Port Saint Joe, FL. This home rents for around $2000 a month December-mid March. Is that high season in the Florida Panhandle? Nope! That’s why you come here during that time. No crowds, cool temps, plenty of sun, and your dogs can run and play on the beach.

  
This same home rents for about $2500 a WEEK during high season. What?!? NO!

  
This is such a peaceful time of year to be here. The Christmas celebrations are fun and the locals are very friendly! We are 15 minutes to Apalachicola to the East, 10 minutes to Port Saint Joe to the West, and an hour to Panama City. There is no shortage of events from boat parades to Christmas Tree lightings and downtown parades.

  
Oh, you only stay in condos so that you have a pool and the beach? Well, lookie here! Many of these beach homes have heated pools and hot tubs, too. Yes, this is the same home that rents for $2000 a month during the winter.

I believe we will return again next year! Who’s coming to see us for Christmas or New Year’s? Make your plans now because the house only sleeps 12.

-Jodi

P.S.   I am writing this post with the doors open, Christmas lights on (yes, we have a Christmas Tree), and listening to the sound of crashing waves. Merry Christmas to me!

Categories: Florida | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

“Oh, it’s like that Tiny House show!”

  
No! The way we live is NOTHING like those Tiny House dwellers! I had never heard of this show until we began this crazy gypsy lifestyle. But, I bet at least 50% of the people we talk to mention the Tiny House movement.

There is no way I’d live in a 200 sq ft house. This doesn’t even sound fun and I’m a fan of camping. But that’s what living in a 200 sq ft house would be; camping! No! No! No!

Oh, and the price!! What? $30k+!!! No! No! No! 

Yes, they have chosen to live an alternative American Dream, like us. I think it’s good for all of us to downsize every now and then. It truly is amazing what you can live without.

You go, Tiny House livers! But I like to have separate rooms.

Just setting things straight…

-Jodi

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Some of the Many Perks

 
This is our current home in Davenport, Florida. We are two exits from Disney and just minutes from all of the fun in Orlando. This house features 5 bedrooms and 5.5 baths, a huge kitchen, pool and hot tub, and 4 different living areas.

Would we ever own a home this big? NO! I have no desire to pay for or maintain something this big. But, just like a boat, the best giant houses are the ones that others own and pay for.

We wanted to get our family together for a few days of fun and this property was perfect. Since Monday, we’ve had 8 people funin’ it up by the pool.

 Here are my kiddos catching the first morning rays on the back side of the pool. My grand baby is there, too. When she makes her arrival in October, we plan on living very close to her for a little while. Pretty cool, huh? (They don’t know that I took this picture. They might kill me but look how relaxed and happy they are!! LOVE THEM!) 
So, just imagine that you could live in a small modest home when there’s only 2 of you but then you could stay in a huge villa to host your entire family. That’s our life. It’s good!

-Jodi

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3 Reasons to avoid carpet in a vacation rental

Jodi and I have stayed in several vacation rentals now.  Some have had hard surface flooring and some carpet.

In the ones with carpet there are always stains of some sort unless the carpet is brand new.  The stains are not always from messy renters.  Sometimes they are from normal foot traffic.

The house we’re currently renting for the month of may has light beige carpet in almost every space.  We’re finding that no matter how hard we try, we’re still need to spot clean the carpet.  These spots are not from dogs having accidents, they’re from normal traffic.

Take today for example.  I walked out, walked back in and didn’t realize that I had stepped in a small amount of mud somewhere.  (Yes it was mud, I tasted it to make sure.)  We travel with a spot bot, so no big deal.  I cleaned it and all is back to normal.  But a normal vacationing family is most likely not traveling with a carpet cleaner.

Hard surface floors are most likely more expensive initially than carpet.  But I would be willing to bet that in the long run they would be cheaper overall and last longer.

Brodie

Categories: Miscellaneous, Vacation Rental | Tags: , | Leave a comment

A Wave From It All -VRBO #661719 -Perdito Key, FL

Here is our first vacation home rental review. I know, it’s taken forever but I HAVE A JOB! Jeesh!

This is VRBO #661719 and is 3 BR/2 BA. This is the perfect little house for a family of 4-5, a girls weekend, or a couple’s weekend.

CLICK HERE for video of exterior

The house is just 5 houses from the water and right around the corner from a great boat launch and pier. Make sure to visit Hub Stacy’s for a great casual dining experience right on the water.

The house is decorated in cheery beach colors and casual furnishings. DOG FRIENDLY!! So friendly that the owners provided treats for our fur babies.

The home has 4 full size beds. This can be a bit of a challenge for a couple with 2 bed sleeping doggies. But, we slept in the large room with 2 double beds and it worked just fine.

The kitchen is simple but clean. We had everything we needed plus coffee and popcorn that was provided by the owner.

If you want a funky beach cottage, here ha go! This would be great for a week or a long weekend. This is not one of our long-term stay locations.

-Jodi

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Love notes for your vacation renters

As we’ve traveled from one vacation rental to another, there is at least one thing that’s been missing each time.  It’s operating instructions for the house.

Electronics of all types are common place in most homes now.  From the cable box to the remotes to thermostats that may be Transformers in disguise.  The controls are complex to say the least.  We’re actually pretty good with gadgets.  But, I don’t always want to have to learn how the house is engineered in order to function.

Most vacation renters are not staying in one place as we are and therefore they don’t want to waste vacation time trying to learn how to turn on the TV.  So, here are a few things that you as a vacation home owner can do to help your renters and garner that all important positive feedback.

1. Print out instructions for the T.V. remotes.  There is rarely just one remote for a T.V. system anymore.  Many have one for the T.V., one for the cable box, one for the sound, dvd player, etc.  That’s a lot of remotes!  I’m pretty tech savvy and I still find myself staring at the pile of remotes like a monkey with a laptop.

2. How do I run the sound?  I’ve noticed many owners like to put in a sound system of some sort.  That’s cool.  But, how do I turn it up or down?  You don’t have to explain every function.  Just let me know how to adjust the volume and turn it on.

3. How do I operate your fancy thermostat?  Thermostats are a whole new world.  Digital, programmable, save the whale settings and so forth.  Same as above, how do I make it do things?

4. It’s dark, please help me.  In the newer houses, this is what I see: groups of light switches on every wall and I have no clue what they do.  What we end up doing is flipping on a switch and then running around to see what happened.  Put a small label on them.  You’ll probably save on electricity and your renter will save time and frustration.

5. Should I just throw matches at the fireplace?  As I type this post I’m looking at a gas log fireplace in the living room.  I see no gas key, starter button or switch.  Do I just throw matches at it until something catches fire?

These are just a few items and I’m being kind of sarcastic just for humors sake.  Most of the above listed items are things that we figure out as we go.  But, I would be more annoyed if I only had one week of vacation time and a part of it was spent learning the engineering specs on your home electronics.

So, go get some paper and post it notes and make your rental user friendly.  Everybody will be happier.

English: Flight controllers in the space shutt...

English: Flight controllers in the space shuttle flight control room in the Mission Control Center at NASA’s Johnson Space Center watch the big screens during the landing of Space Shuttle Discovery (STS-128) at NASA’s Dryden Flight Research Center at Edwards Air Force Base in California. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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Video of our vacation rental in Perdido Key

Here’s a short video of our latest vacation rental in Perdido Key.  It’s a 3 bedroom trailer that is very clean, well decorated and comfortable.  We really like the screened in front porch.

We’ll be here for a week until we move to the next place that is nearby.  We’ve got a lot to do here since this area will be our new permanent address.  Drivers licenses, plates, etc.

Brodie

Categories: Florida | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Miles of walking space on Fripp Island

Weather permitting, there is a lot of space for walking, dog walking, running and biking on Fripp Island in South Carolina.

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Three ways to rent out your vacation home

Jodi has been busy for the past several days searching for and trying to get our next vacation homes lined up and rented.  Honestly, I’m glad that she does that and not me.  I’m afraid I wouldn’t have the patience for it.  She keeps running into the same problems.  Problems which could be easily solved by owners and most likely lead to more rentals.

First: Keep your house listing up to date.  Several times Jodi has found a house that shows as available on a rental site, only to find out once she contacts the owner that it is actually already rented and that the listing was wrong.

Second: Be responsive.  Most of the listings she finds have a phone number listed.  Unfortunately, a person rarely answers and if they return the call, it may be several days later.  At a minimum, respond via email with the needed information or to schedule a time to call.

Third: If you have a chance to rent out the property, then do it.  Jodi recently ran into a house that we could have rented, but it has contractors living and working on it.  Rather than require the contractors to complete their work on time so the house could be rented, the owner allowed them to extend their stay.

These are just the top 3 that come to mind right now and I’m sure we’ll have more suggestions as we go.  Have you ever tried to rent a vacation place only to be denied for a reason that just didn’t make sense?

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