I was wondering if there was a source people used to make bulk purchases for things that either get used up or wear out? I am not close enough to restock myself, so I am looking at having things delivered and then have the cleaning staff replenish as necessary.
I would look into Sam's, Costco, Amazon, or maybe even a grocery chain like Walmart or HEB.
COSTCO, Dollar Tree (but do store pickup; shipping is crazy expensive), Walmart
@Lee L. Sam's Club, Amazon
When I have 3 or more houses rented out by the same group of workers, I go ahead and buy my restocking supplies for all the houses ahead of time. If I buy too much, I just save it for the next vacancy.
With that in mind, you may want to buy enough supplies to restock the house 4-6 times before restocking your stock. Put the supplies in a locked cabinet and give your housekeeper the key.
I try to estimate consumables such as soap, shampoo, tea, coffee etc for 6 months quantity and stock the locked closet with that much. We visit about every 3-4 months so we rarely run out. My house cleaner has picked up needed supplies once and I sent funds to cover the purchase. It worked out well.
Each of our houses has a locked storage spot. Each locked storage has enough supplies for 1 - 2 months with of guests. The cleaners are responsible to restock the house as needed from locked storage.
Then once a month we have the cleaning crew report what is low, and the manager will drop off ( or ship) supplies to re-stock the locked storage.
Since we manage 23 houses this way, we now have a master storage facility (my garage) that we re-stock every other month or so as needed. Mostly from Walmart, Sams Club, IKEA, and a hotel supply website.
We are considering offering a service where we send out boxes of these supplies to other hosts as well. We buy things in bulk, and get pretty good deals. We do not ship things like toilet paper and paper towels. It is cheaper to drop off, or have the cleaner run by the local store.
I ship directly from Amazon using my prime account to my cleaning crew and they restock for me - works flawlessly. Amazon now has their own brand of "disposables", it's a no-brainer and I stock them in a locked off area of each property.
@Benjamin Vail have you ever considered Alibaba? Given your scale it might make sense.
@Benjamin Vail , would you mind sharing which hotel supply site you use?
@Lee L. We use Amazon for most of our supplies. We put a little pump unit in the showers with soap, shampoo, conditioner and then buy those by the gallon. If you use keywords like "hospitality" or "travel" in your searches, you can often find 50-200 packs of things like hotel bars of soap, 3oz dish detergent, etc. if you plan on using those types of hotel style amenities.
For sheets and towels, we use Inn Style.
@Scott Ellis we have been using hotelitems.com . They have great stuff, but shipping can be $50 - $100. So really only worth it for big orders.
@Scott Ellis do you mind sharing the brand of your gallon shampoo, conditioner and body wash?
You never know where you might find supplies for your STR. Last night I was at a charity auction for college scholarships. It grosses about $200k in one night. I was able to get a case (96) of toilet paper for $27. 500 styro plates and 1000 plastic forks for $15.
My tenants don't care about t.p. or disposable eating utensils. They are refinery contractors; welder, pipefitters, boilermakers and other redneck jobs.