Real Estate

The dos and don’ts of listing your rental property

two lounge chairs sitting on a deck on a clear day next to a lake Photo by Shutterstock

If you’re a cottage owner looking to rent out your property, one of the keys to your rental success is the strategy you use to put together your listing on a holiday rental website. Your listing is your first line of communication with potential renters, so your goal should be to create a listing that stands out and makes a lasting impression. Your listing is your “elevator pitch” to potential renters, so make it count. You don’t have to be a literary genius to build an effective and engaging listing, but you should stick to certain standards. By choosing high-quality images and providing thoughtful and thorough descriptions, you can ensure your listing does its job. To make your listing stand out from the other rental strategies, follow these helpful tips.

Do write an attention-grabbing title
The title can make your listing stand out and compel visitors to click through. The first few lines of your listing should have equal impact: this is when visitors will decide to keep on reading or move on to another listing.

Do be brief
Stick to short sentences or lists instead of prolonged paragraphs. By crafting your listing to be easy on the eye, you’ll reduce the risk that potential renters lose interest. Try to be super informative in as few words as possible. It might take a few tries to come up with sentences that pack a big punch, but after a few rough drafts you’ll have a seriously slick and user-friendly listing.

Do sell your surroundings
Provide a bit of information about the vicinity of the property, such as attractions, activities, and climate. Keep in mind that travelers often choose their accommodation based on a destination.

Do highlight the highlights
Describe in detail what makes your property unique. Write about features and amenities guests can anticipate, such as an upgraded kitchen and bathrooms, pet-friendliness, private pool, or sports or recreational equipment

Do tell a visual story
Post as many photos as possible, and make sure they provide an accurate portrayal of your property. And remember that it’s not just about quantity of photos; the quality is of utmost importance. It’s best to post professional-looking, good-sized, hi-resolution
photos, not blurry thumbnails. Remember, a picture is worth a thousand words.

Do spell check
Travellers often interpret spelling and grammatical errors as a red-flag that the property owner is disorganized or lazy! Doing a vigilant spell check is a smpile ayw ot aiovd htis stiuatoin.

For extra gold stars on your cottage-rental listing, avoid these common errors that can raise red flags for potential renters.

Don’t paint a false picture
When building your listing, don’t produce a work of fiction. If you’re dishonest you will receive negative reviews and complaints from guests claiming that you falsely advertised your property and gave inaccurate and misleading information.

Don’t edit your photographs
Using editing tools to erase imperfections, such as peeling or cracking paint, is another big no. Photos are a means of virtually transporting potential guests to your home, so the images you upload must be true to life. There is a difference between professional and pretend.

Don’t leave out details
Provide as much information as possible, such as number of bedrooms, occupancy, restrictions, and amenities. If you provide more information, you’ll receive higher-quality inquiries. Travellers who inquire after reading your detailed listing are probably intent on making a booking.

Don’t spam
There is usually a designated place on a listing to display personal information (i.e., contact info and separate URL). Don’t try to stick in personal information into the description if this is explicitly against policy – if you spam you may lose your listing and hence lose access to untapped travellers.

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