Every short stay operator dreads the prospect of the out of control party or fraudulent booking, and there have certainly been a number of well-publicised examples hitting the headlines recently.
Whether you are a landlord letting your own property on the short stay market, or you are a short stay agent handling multiple properties on behalf of their owners, there are ways that you can mitigate the risk and cut down on the likelihood of it happening to you. Here are some excellent tips from our friend Linton Wood at Beyond A Room. Linton shares their business's best practice pro tips for avoiding problem bookings.
Linton says prevention is always better than cure, so here are some red flags to look out for (with a couple thrown in by Ceneta).
The Number One no-brainer is, get yourself some appropriate insurance!
Although not always possible, face to face meet & greets can give you a general sense of who your guests are and what the purpose of their stay is
Beware of last minute bookings
Never take bookings for a single night. Rent for a minimum of two nights
Add house rules to your listing and guest reservation agreement
Ensure guests fill out a reservation agreement outlining the terms and conditions of their stay and verifying their identity as the reservation holder.
No pay, no stay
Always set a security deposit
Give the neighbours your contact number
Require guests to give you their residential address when booking
Ask lots of questions. The responses (or lack thereof) may give you early warning
Are they locals? This can sometimes indicate a party about to happen
Check if they have reviews on any booking sites (ie: Airbnb). This can sometimes reveal a poor track record
If in doubt, call the booking platform and request more information about the booker
See if you can find their profile on social media
Listen to your gut feeling and pray
If managing from afar, recruit someone close to the property to help you
Bonus flag: How many repeating numbers does the booker's phone number have?
To drill down into the detail on all of the above, click here to see Linton Wood's pro advice on dealing with dodgy bookings.
This information is general advice only, please consider the PDS.
Refer to the FSG on our website for our services and remuneration details.
Need to know more? Contact Ceneta Insurance Services
AR 332815 | Authorised Representative of PSC Connect Pty Ltd
ABN 23 141 574 914 | AFS License No 344648