On last week’s blog we discussed areas to consider purchasing a vacation rental. We are fortunate to live in an area that’s a vacation destination for many people. For this reason it makes sense that all of our vacation rental properties are in Bozeman or Big Sky. For those living in this area, vacation rentals are a great way to invest in local real estate and show off this corner of the world to those who visit.
Short term rentals are certainly more hands-on than traditional rentals. However, there are ways to minimize the strain by employing useful tools and technology. For example, instead of a standard lock and key for the front door we like to use an internet-based keypad. Prior to a guest’s checkin I simply email them a code. This code gives them access at any point during their stay. I can set it so their code is activated at a certain time on arrival day and deactivated at a certain time on departure day. Gone are the days of guests losing keys, meeting people at the unit to let them in, etc.
Another sweet bit of technology we love are the wifi thermostats. These work like normal thermostats with the added bonus of being able to monitor and control temperature from anywhere I have cell phone reception. So I can be at home powering through a Game of Thrones binge while adjusting the temperature on my recently vacated condo 40 miles away. This allows me to ensure it’s always at a reasonable temperature when empty (think busted pipes in Big Sky). Plus this helps keep the power bill as low as possible. These little thermostats pay for themselves many times over.
Technology has helped streamline the vacation rental management business in other ways as well. Netflix, Amazon, and Hulu have eliminated the need for DVD’s and their accessories. There are surveillance technologies that allow owners to monitor their properties from thousands of miles away. This is especially handy for those with properties in very remote locations. There are even garden sensors that water plants and give owners feedback on the condition of their garden.
For current landlords or those who would like to get into owning rental property, running a property as a vacation rental can be a worthwhile and rewarding option. These various tools and technologies can make life much easier and even more profitable!
And now we wait for Google toilets…
Last week’s trivia question: Shortly after naming the town after him in 1864, Bozeman’s residents grew weary of John Bozeman. They almost renamed the town. What name would it have been? Answer: Montana City
This week’s trivia question: As of 4/9/2017, how many active residential real estate listings are on MLS inside Bozeman city limits? a)8 b)20 c)46 d)93