Advice on our first STVR on a lake.

10 Replies

My wife and I bought our first stvr this year and just finally got it ready to rent. We are planning on doing a major remodel this winter during the off-season as the house looks and shows fairly ok but it is not something I would want to spend more than a week in as it needs a remodel badly. The pics make it look nice but I hate deceiving people. We wanted to avoid all the websites with reviews until after the remodel. We didn't want to get bad reviews from people thinking the house is gross or too outdated etc. We put it on FB and Craigslist with an aggressive weekly price compared to the competition but wanted to know if there was anywhere else someone could post it to get traffic.

It has great space, on the biggest lake in West Michigan, dock, good parking, nice yard etc. I am sure once the remodel is done it will be great but just too worried to post on VRBO and alike. 

Thanks everyone in advance. 

Sorry to disagree with @Chai Xiong , but I think you are absolutely on the right track with your train of thought. Don't misrepresent your property. At least respect your clients enough to give them an accurately depicted place. They will appreciate you 10 times more in the end and you won't carry a scarlet letter for years with the OTAs

Well let me rephrase, if you only have 1 or 2 pictures and hiding the bad spots then yes you are going down the wrong path.  I got renters who wants more pictures outside from my listing pictures.  I'm working on a video hopefully that will help.  
If they agree to what they see on picture and pricing, there's nothing wrong with listing it for now.

Instead of heavily discounting place and not building reviews on Homeaway/VRBO and Air why not go ahead and knock out the upgrade now? You should be able to do a massive renovation in just a few weeks if you have a good crew.

I do agree with not risking bad reviews by listing on the big sites too soon.

@John Underwood in Michigan our prime season is June-Aug and a little in September so I would like to make money why I can and then take on the remodel in October. This renovation will take 3 months as it is very extensive.  If it was a 3 week reno I would have done it already. 

Oh then it absolutely buttresses my position earlier then. Since you have a lot of work to do, I would absolutely agree with you to hold off. It sounds like (from the way I am reading it) that you already know the answers - you are just looking for supporting opinions. 

You have mine from here.

Best of luck

I would list it at discounted rate and get it rented so it can start paying for its own remodel.

“This property is priced lower than our competitors because it is out dated. It is being remodeled after the busy season. Please enjoy the home at this special introductory rate!”

You’ll be surprised how quickly it books. Next year you will miss the days of not having to worry about your new floors.

Good luck!

@Michael Kugler I sorta figured this was the right way to go but just wanted confirmation. I am so new at STVR's I just needed some encouragement. Its priced so low that people are trying to book 1-2 years out. 

Just post it to reflect the condition. If it is straight from the 1950s say so.  Your cottage by the lake in perfect location, step back in time.  Not every rental is just done.  Gross and outdated are different. Gross implies dirty or uncared for.