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Renting your holiday home with... How simple can help you make your holiday home pay for itself. by SĂ­lvia Gomes

Your holiday home is a place where you can escape, relax, take in a round of golf, lay in the warm sunny beaches or explore markets and cultural places. However holiday homes do come with a cost, and if you haven´t been using it as much as you planned, or if you simply would like an extra income to pay for running

Why rent your holiday home

costs then letting your property to other holiday makers is the solution. Managing theses rentals while you are not present can be a true difficulty, for that you have simple, a property management company that can take care of you pro perty year round and give your guests a unique service,

from welcoming to suggesting great places to visit, eat, “As we are only able to use our villa for 4 weeks each year, renting our villa pays for the running costs. ” —Colin, Óbidos, Portugal

and simply enjoy themselves. Might any problem occur during your guests stay sim ple is here to point them in the right direction. All the advantages of vacationing in a private home, with the support and security of a true hotel service. A truly different holiday that guest will want to return to year in year out. 02 Giving the owner a simple renting experience..

Table of

Contents Why rent your holiday home


Preparing the property

The rental process Enquiries and reservations


Collecting payments from the guests


Preparing the house for guests


Setting your goals


Key handover, meet and greet


Equip the property


Assisting guests


What simple can do for your property


Departure and deposit refund


Changeover and house closing


Payments and report


Marketing the property Finding guests


Preparing your property advert


Preparing your property brochure and newsletter


The difference with simple From the owners point of view


From the guests point of view

25 03

Preparing the Property... First let’ s go through what you need to do in order to prepare your property for guests.

Preparing the property

Preparing the property

Setting your goals

Determine your goal Before you start don ’t forget to determine how many weeks you will be using the property yourself and which ones. After you have done this determine your rental goals.

Renting a home is just like setting up a small business and as any business it is important to have a clear idea of what your goals are. Remember to keep them realistic, and that

This is a very important part of the rental process, if for example you are renting only to help out with running costs and it is more important to you to have your property as new as possible rather then make a huge profit then simple will help you go in that direction, setting a price that is a bit higher and renting only to families for example.

making a huge profit is not the only important

If profit is your main goal, and you want to pay all expenses

thing at stake.

price that is a bit lower, being more flexible with who can use

and even part of your mortgage with rental, then setting a your property is the way to market it.



• Finding guests who will pay to stay in your home. • Make guests want to return and tell friends about it.

Calculation to find your break - even point: If your monthly mortgage payment is less than or equal to 1 peak - w eek rental rate and you rent approximately

• Keep your property as new as possible

17 weeks a year, your property should come close to

• Pay for your running expenses through rental.

erage 12 peak weeks. Other costs (e.g. gas & electric

• Not only pay for all expenses but still make a profit.

breaking even. Most holiday rental markets have an av bills or taxes) are paid by earnings from approximately 5 weeks of off- p eak rentals. Example: If you own a villa with a monthly mortgage of

simple can help you determine who to target and at what price.

£1000 and rent your home for £1000 per week in peak season, you’ d only need to rent 12 weeks to break even on your mortgage payments.


Preparing the property

Safety requirements These objects are required in order to rent in safety.

Equip the property Preparing the property

• • • • •

Small fire extinguisher. Fire Blanket. First aid kit. Emergency phone numbers. Insurance for property users

simple can provide all the required equipment Although your holiday home is already furnished and

and cost it out before purchasing.

decorated it might not be ready for rentals.



Remove any personal or valuable objects and store

them in a lockable cupboard or even a garage if not needed for rentals.


Remove clutter and any other objects that might

be a hassle for renters, keep the space as clear an easy to use as possible, remember children might come as well so make the space child friendly.


Make sure the property has all of the following


Kitchen In the kitchen convenience is the main focus. The amount of dishes, cutlery and glasses available should be double your maximum sleep capacity. The dining table should fit the maximum number of guests that can be there at one time. Other Basic equipment that guests appreciate is kettle, microwave, toaster, table cloth, table mats… Some dish soap and a dish sponge should also be avai lable, as well as 1/2 cleaning products, and a garbage



In the lounge comfort and fun.

If you have a balcony, a terrace or an actual backyard

Make sure to have comfortable seating big enough to sit all the guests.

as important as the indoors.

Big TV, with the Basic satellite channels, a DVD player, playing cards and maybe even a board game for the rainy days.

Bedrooms In the bedrooms comfort and relaxation. Be sure to have a comfortable mattress and pillows. At least 2 set of light colored sheets per room, 2 pillows per person with pillow protectors, a duvet with a cover, extra blanket, and a mattress pad. An alarm clock and a bedside table lamp in each room.

Bathrooms In the bathrooms, spotlessness and safety. Minimum: · 2 bath towels per guest • 2 hand towels per guest • 1 shower towel to put on the exit of the shower. • Anti - slip rug in the shower and bathtub. • A hairdryer • 2 toilet rolls per bathroom on arrival. • Hand wash soap.

Preparing the property


don ’ t forget the outdoors for holiday makers are just

What every home should have: • Small barbecue. • Table and chairs.(according to space) Depending on the space available you could also have: • Lounge chair. • Outdoor sofas or pillows. • Sun Umbrella. Note: having outdoor furniture prevents your guest from bring the indoor furniture outside.

Extras Small extras that hotels don ’ t have are what truly make the difference. · Umbrellas, • bikes, • toys for kids, • high - speed internet, • pool table, • books, • games, • DVDs, • Maps... Use your imagination and surprise your guests


Take pictures of the furniture and decor

Preparing the property


layout for rentals, and make a complete inventory of all the objects in the property. An owner decor can also be determined, safely putting

What simple can do for your property Preparing the property

away all personal and unnecessary rental objects, but put ting them back when owners are out.


Make instructions for your properties usage.

For example: how to turn on/use the gas, water, electric main board, heating system, stove, oven, washer, dish Besides providing all the required equipment that we


mentioned on the previous pages when you turn a

Also small safety reminders such as locking doors and

property in for rental management at simple we will do the following steps:



Inspect the property, see if all is working prop -

Windows when leaving the home...


Make a complete brochure for your property

in pdf format to send to all potential renters and to yourself

erly. Turn in a complete Snag with quotes for any re -

so you can also turn in to potential renters, friends and

quired maintenance.



Put together a marketing strategy where we

help you determine your goals and identify other prop erties in the same rental market in order to best reach a competitive strategy.



Help you get Insurance for users so that you

are secure no matter what happens.

Print versions available upon request—price will be quoted


Make an adapted version of our Tourist

guide, where we have a chapter dedicated to the town in which your property is located. This feature really makes a difference, this way tourists not only get a beautiful property and fantastic assistance, they also get some pointers on what to do from people who actually live in the area rather then tourist only sites.


Marketing the Property... Now lets see how simple can help you find clients.

We are listed on the main website for holiday makers. Each client gets 2 months of exposure, or more if willing to pay an extra price. These listings serve mainly to draw holiday makers to

Finding guests Marketing the property

simple ’s website where they can view all available properties and check out the type of greeting service they can expect.

Marketing the property

Listing websites

Local real estate agencies Now that your property is ready for guests it ’ s time to

We have agreements with various real estate agencies,

start marketing it.

so that if a client is interested in renting a property they

Simple ’ s marketing strategy is diverse, but relies

can direct them to simple, this of course has a com -

mainly on the internet. Studies show that most holiday

mission cost of 10% over the rental income. Property

makers nowadays rely mainly on the internet for all

owners are not obligated to accept theses clients if they

bookings, form flights to hotels. We list just some of our

do not wish to pay the fees.

main marketing channels that are going to promote your website.

Tourist Guide This is one of simple ’s main marketing tools. Every

Simple website

restaurant, bar, or other business listed in our tour gui -

All simple clients that have a rental management con -

de does not pay to be there but is obligated to allow

tract are listed on our website. Your property is shown through pictures features and availability charts.

simple to have flyers available for clients. This brings in new clients that are in these places by chance, and that might think of renting your property next time or pass the information on to friends.


Every now and then simple participates in local and

Mailing lists

international newspapers and magazines where we

simple has its own mailing list and send out newsletters about special offers several times a year. When becoming a client you can add your own contacts

promote ourselves as the silver coast‘s property solu tions company.

to this list and your friends will receive a personal

Word of mouth

newsletter that we put together introducing your pro -

This is simple ’s final touch in our marketing strategy.


After a client has rented your property he receives a

Have no fear for If they do not wish to receive any further newsletters all they have to do in unsubscribe.

Marketing the property

Print Publicity

voucher that gives him a discount for next time, and also receives a voucher to give to a friend that offers a free welcome basket in any booking he might make.

“Simple is truly a unique company, I feel as if I am at my own home every other week through their reports.

Personal Marketing strategy If you wish to have a more active marketing strategy any of these listed publicity types can be done for your

As for the guests they absolutely love simple ’ s

property in exclusive. Just let us know what you would

support, the instructions throughout the house

like and we will price it out for you. From a printed

and the tourist brochure are an amazing bonus.”

publicity to your own personal website all is possible.

—Tanis, Peniche, Portugal

And if you have any suggestions please let us know be cause simple ’ s success is also your success. 11

Marketing the property

Price We analyze the market, go over your yearly cost for the property with you and reach the price that we think you should ask for your rental rates. 2nd point on page 08. simple will put together

Simple will start by preparing all the information

a complete marketing strategy for you, that

required so that your property can be listed on our

includes a price range.

website and on our paid internet adverts.


The main research criteria for travelers: • Location and proximity • Price • Size • Preferred dates

Location and proximity More important than where you are, is what ’ s near you! We study where your property is, how far from the airport and certain other attractions so that we best describe your location in the advert.

Marketing the property

Preparing your property advert

Size The number of bedrooms should be very clear as well as the number of guests allowed. There might be only 2 bedrooms but it can still sleep 6 however we don ’ t want people to think that everyone will have a room if 2 beds will be in the lounge.

Preferred dates Availability for certain dates is another very important search criteria, for that simple will make sure your charts are updated every time there is a booking and also help make arrival dates and time flexible for guests. 12

Headline We will put together an attention grabbing headline for your property that really stands out in the crowd.

Description Based on the information we have put together about location, proximity to attractions and the size of the house. 100 words max. so that everyone actually reads it.

Thumbnail photo We will choose your best photo and put on a small sticker advertising one feature in particular. For example: from only 7â‚Ź a night, free welcome basket, one day tour included, or whatever other features your property may offer.

Photos We will take photos of your property and stage certain scenes such as dinner table, or outdoor meal...

Facilities We will include a list of the facilities your property has, such as air-conditioning, heating system,...

Availability chart This chart will be easy to read and will be updated every time there is a confirmed booking.

Marketing the property

Your advert will contain all these points:

Rental rates Prices will be listed as clearly as possible. The ideal would be 2 different prices high and low season. There will also be a per night price for those renting weekends, as well as minimum stays.

Guest reviews Every time a guest leaves a nice message we will inclu de it in your advert.

Preparing your property advert Marketing the property


Marketing the property

Preparing your property newsletter Marketing the property

After gathering all the required information simple

Marketing the property

Preparing your property brochure will put together a unique property brochure for your property.

After finishing the property brochure a newsletter

It will be in a pdf format and print version (if re -

is sent to our mailing list announcing our latest

quired for a agreed price). Simple will then send

property to let, and with the pdf brochure as an

this pdf to any client that shows interest and send


it to yourself so that you too can mail it over to

Our mailing list will be used but you can also send

friends, family and anyone who is looking to rent

us your own email list so that we can widen our

for holidays.



Brochure includes: Pictures * Description * Floor plans How to get there * Surrounding area What to do * Where to eat...


The rental process... There are potential clients interested, what now?

The rental process

Enquiries Every time your property gets an enquiry we will send


The rental process

Enquiries and reservations

If the client is interested he will receive a contract that he should sign and fax back or email. simple puts together a contract that includes: • Our contact info and the address for the rental property. • Cancellation policy

the potential renter some further information on the

• Security deposit refund rules

rental policy, prices, some pictures, etc..

• Maximum occupancy restrictions • Departure policy

About 2 days after sending this info we will give the

• Total amount due and payment Schedule

client a phone call or email (if phone not available) to

• Arrival/departure dates and times

determine their interest in renting it.


Questions will be asked to insure that the renters understand that this property is a personal holiday home and should be respectfully used. The client will have full knowledge that there will be someone there to greet them therefore these answers will be verified.

When possible simple will always choose to phone clients rather than email them.

pet and smoking

Reservations As soon as the client send us the signed contract and transfers the reservation fee (around 20%)simple will: • update the availability chart • send the client the complete brochure on the property. • Send the client the payment Schedule. 16

The rental process

The rental process

Collecting payments from guests

Security deposit Value should be paid in cash on the day of arrival to the key holder before the keys are turned in. Bank transfer is also accepted but the costs are on the client.

Reservation fee Is 20% of the total amount of the rental cost. Should be paid as soon as reservation is made, prefe rably by bank transfer but can also be paid by a cheque sent in the post. Non refundable.

Final Balance The other 80% should be paid prior to the receiving of the keys.

A guideline for the refunding of the deposit is signed by both parties.

If on departure date all is well with the property the client receives his cash deposit back.

If something is broken, wrecked the deposit is not refunded.


This is a very important aspect of renting. Kno -

Ideal is a bank transfer about 7 - 10 days before arrival,

wing they can lose about 150â‚Ź if they damage

but can also be paid by credit or debit card at our offices

the property helps keep it safe. Minor breakage

on the day of arrival.

such as 1/2 plates or cups is not considered a

Cheques are not accepted on the day of arrival.

valid reason for deposit keeping. 17

Key handover, meet and greet

The rental process

The rental process

Simple will prepare your property to receive your guests. Preparation includes: • Quick clean • All outdoor furniture in place • Fresh sheets and towels are laid out. • Gas, water and electricity all set and running properly. • Refrigerator and other appliances plugged in. • Other small preps, toilet paper, soap... • Perfuming the property for the reception.

Meet and greet

The rental process

Preparing the house for guests

On the day of arrival simple will greet your guest at the property turn in the keys and explain the property security rules and main functions.

Tour guide On the day of arrival simple will turn in a printed version of the adapted tourist guide.


Because it is one of the main differences of renting with simple and not another com pany, this guide is only fully turned into a cli-

All clients that rent properties with simple have a maintenance contract that already includes a bimonthly airing

ent on arrival. They then can take it home and use it next time they are out or pass on to someone else.

and maintenance, therefore cleaning for

But at least for the time being it is still a

arrival is only a minor task.

unique gift simple ’s clients get.


The rental process

The rental process

After clients are settled in our work with them is not yet over. All clients are given 2 cell numbers that they can use if in need of any information or in the event of any problem or emergency Clients can also use our tourist services such as guides, taxi booking, restaurant booking and much more...

The rental process

Departure and deposit refund

Assisting guests

On the day of the departure we go to the property do a inventory scan of all objects and possible damage and return the cash deposit to the client if all is well.


To make the snag as swift as possible, for some clients have to leave very early to the airport, we have a check list that reviews the main points to look for upon departure.

Available in the tourist guide turned over on arrival.

In the event of us having missed something that was stolen or broken and having already returned the deposit, we will return the deposit to the owner as a credit on his expenses to be paid to simple. 19

The rental process

The rental process

Changeover and house closing

House closing All utilities are shut down, water, gas and electri city. Windows and shutters securely closed.

Cleaning After your guests have left simple takes over and thoroughly cleans your home and outdoor space, and if not a changeover day then we safely put all the outdoor furniture in the house so that all is set

Front door properly locked. Keys are taken back to our offices and securely stored in our key lock.


Cleaning services will be done by a professional

and ready for your next rental.

that has been properly instructed.

Laundry is also done at the property itself, or else

Verification of the cleaning standards and final

ware if it is a changeover day.

close down is done directly by your property

Garbage and recycling are taken care of.



The rental process

Payments and report The rental process

For example: Rental income: 600€


Simple services: 125€

After your guests have had a wonderful holiday,


and your home is properly closed down, it’ s time to talk money. simple, who has received all the payments, will send you the final balance.

Profit: 475€ Time and Money invested in the rental process = 0€

Here you can see how much was earned and how much you must pay to simple for the rental sup -


port service. When you verify and agree to the

After 3/4 days guests receive an email asking them

values simple will transfer your share into your

to grade the service and the property and asking

bank account and send you a proof of transfer as

them if they mind leaving a small review.

well as the receipt for the services.

After simple has received this we put together a

Keys are taken back to our offices and securely

report based on the clients review and on the final

stored in our key lock.

snag we did of the property and send it to you. 21

Congratulations you have just successfully rented your property without any time or financial investment

Please check simple ’s property management booklet for information on what type of property management contract you should subscribe to in order to benefit from all this.

The difference with simple Let ’s review how easy it is to rent your property with simple and to rent a property through simple.

The difference with simple

Renting with simple From the owners point of view


You contact us for information. We contact you ex -

5th Your first rental booking comes in. We let you know

plain our services, ask for some info on the property

the dates, number of guests, etc…

(pictures, plans), and book a visit it if possible.

6th Guests leave after having a great time, you get a

2nd We put together a short version of our marketing

complete report and a Money transfer for your profit.

strategy for your property and wait for your approval.

simple, you make profit with no

3rd You agree we sign a management contract. (1st

hassle or investment.

payment is 6 months advance, afterwards it will be by the trimester)

4th Within 2 weeks you receive a complete property analysis, were you have a Marketing Strategy, inven tory, pictures, your add in our website, your add in paid websites, insurance contracts (if you do not have them already), instructions for your property use, a complete brochure on your property.

“For myself simple is the easiest way to go, my only investment is my property man agement fee, which I was already paying anyway, and every time I make a profit I pay simple for their rental support.” —Noel, Nazaré, Portugal


The difference with simple

5th Guest receives the key, and simple Tours the pro perty with him pointing out the instructions that are available, turn in a tourist guide and gives the guest

Renting with simple From the guests point of view

some pointers on what to do and where to go.

6th During His stay the guest is free to call simple for any type of information or even for certain services they


The guest asks us for information on the property

and receives a phone call or email explaining the area, the property and reservation terms.

might want, a tour guide for a day, or a driver for the night.

7th Guest leaves certain to return to do everything else

2nd Guest reserves and pays the fee.

that is on the tour guide and they didn ’ t get a chance

3rd Before arriving guest receives a pdf with instruc -

voucher in it to a friend.

to do, takes the guide with him and certain to give the

tions on how to leave Lisbon and reach the property, be it in a rental car, bus or train.

4th Guest arrives at the property, one of simple’ s property managers will be there to greet him, take His final payment (if not done already, with portable ATM machine) and receive the security deposit.

simple, send clients a thank you email and asks them if they mind grading the service and leaving a quote for the website.

24 Website currently under construction 00 351 965 874 417 Ă“bidos Silvia Gomes (property manager)

Renting your home with simple  

If you own a holiday home in Portugal and would like to make some income please read and see how simple - property solutions can help you.

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