Owners’ Frequently Asked Questions
We select our cottages very carefully and only accept those that will be in keeping with the high quality that our guests have come to expect.
To become listed with us is a three step process. Firstly we send you our information pack that details the processes involved and our criteria for accepting cottages into our programme. Secondly, we will arrange an appointment for your area account manager to come and view your property and assess its quality, general appeal, and market value. This is a great opportunity to bring along all your questions and we can have a good discussion on your goals for the property. After the visit, we'll send a report that details our recommendations and suggestions and offers a market value of the cottage.
Once we have a signed management agreement, you'll get a link to our Knowledge base where you will find all our checklists, inventory lists and rental advice. Then we'll get your listing up and start booking for you!
Your property is unique and we see it as an individual marketing opportunity and promote it as such. Our searchable website with its range of categories is designed to allow prospective renters to find the property that suits their party make-up, their interests, and budget.
Whereas many of our competitors consider there is only one season for cottage rentals (summer) we know there are many opportunities to market and promote your cottage out of season. Whether it's by promoting interest in activities such as geocaching or fall photography or triathlon preparation, there are myriad opportunities to attract guests outside of the popular summer period. We use our extensive email list to contact anyone who has shown an interest in our cottages, and let them know of special offers, late availability and discounts.
We are all cottage owners ourselves and understand the concern you may have about who will rent your cottage. As far as we can, we match potential guests to the cottage that will suit them the best. This means asking them questions about the needs they have for their vacation, their group size, and make-up (ages of party members etc). From listening to rental clients and reviewing the application form we have a good feel for the respect they will give a cottage. If they seem reluctant to offer the information that will allow us to match them to the right cottage, we would prefer not to rent to them and will politely suggest they look elsewhere.
We charge a percentage of the published rate for each rental week booked This covers an evaluation of your cottage, recommending changes or improvements if needed to meet the current needs of the market; development of your individual marketing strategy; administration of bookings and collection of payments .
We operate a seven day week and respond rapidly to customer requests. The aim is to provide a swift, efficient service to renters and to relieve owners of the burdensome paperwork. We do not charge for weeks that are not rented. We also charge renters a nominal booking fee.
As soon as your property is added to our portfolio, it is listed on our web site, along with other websites that we feel are best suited to your cottage, assuring that your cottage is exposed to thousands of people every single day.
Everyone who asks for our newsletter is kept up to date with new properties, last minute specials, and receives timely information on themed breaks.
Our advertising is targeted to ensure we reach the widest possible audience. While our advertising budget is best invested in web advertising and search engine optimization, we occasionally run promotions in UK and European travel magazines when opportunities arise.
We also look for niche marketing opportunities; for example worldwide canoe clubs and angling associations. Our quarterly owners’ newsletter gives details of all advertising and marketing activity planned.
We offer a no-obligation appraisal of your cottage for rental. The account manager for your area will arrange to visit and view the property. While there they will take photos, so if you decide to register with us, a second visit may not be required. After the visit, you will receive a report giving a completely objective appraisal from a rental viewpoint. The report includes recommendations for improvement, or adding value, as well as suggesting rates for low and high season, weekly and weekend periods.
Damage is rare, but occasionally happens. Almost always, it's accidental and will be covered by our Accidental Damage Protection Plan that covers guests up to $2500 of damage reported to us during the stay. This could be a broken window, a burn on a counter-top, or a spill on a carpet. We have a claims process we ask you to follow that requires estimates for replacement or repair.
We also hold an authorisation to recover costs for any non-accidental damage or charges for additional cleaning. Before we release any payment we ask to see photographic evidence and/or invoices for repairs, cleaning or maintenance over and above the standard time normally taken on a changeover.