Holiday Let Management

Arundel Simple Guide

Arundel Castle | Arundel Holiday Homes | Simple Getaway

Planning on visiting the quaint village of Arundel in Sussex? We’ve put together our top recommended landmarks and a bit of their history:

Arundel Castle

Arundel Castle is a true masterpiece.

Originally built in 1068 by Roger de Montogomery, the Earle of Arundel, the Castle has been restored over the years to maintain its position as one of the most iconic buildings on the South Coast and one of the most well-kept castles in the country.

Arundel Castle | Arundel Holiday Homes | Simple Getaway

The castle sits on 40 acres of land, consisting of the castle itself and the stunning castle gardens, both of which can be accessed on a tour (usually open between March and October). On a castle tour, you are able to wander inside and explore The Keep, the Fitzalan Chapel and the Castle Rooms, all with their own splendour. The castle gardens plant an extraordinary annual tulip display, the largest tulip display in Britain with some 60,000 tulips along with many other spring flowers which are in full bloom from March onwards. 

What is fascinating, is that unlike many historical landmarks, the castle is actually lived in by the current Duke of Norfolk and his family. Many of the internal rooms are fully functional and viewable to the public for half of the year. A tour will give you the opportunity to view inside the dining room, ballroom, library, bedrooms, and even see the bedroom specially commissioned to be built for the use of Queen Victoria’s visit to Arundel Castle back in 1846!

Arundel Village Centre

Outside of the castle walls is the quaint and charming village of Arundel. Picturesque from the moment you drive over the bridge and into the village, it is impossible for Arundel to disappoint. There is not a chain in sight, and instead a multitude of restaurants, cafes, boutique stores and antique shops await.

Enjoy a spot of afternoon tea amongst a day of antiquing or an early evening pint in one of the local village pubs followed by a spectacular meal in one of Arundel’s excellent restaurants (or both!). The food and drink scene in Arundel is outstanding and is one of the many reasons the locals are so fond of this charming village. 

Arundel Cathedral | Arundel Holiday Homes | Simple Getaway

Arundel Cathedral

Further up the hill from the village centre, you will come across Arundel Cathedral. Originally built in 1869 by the 15th Duke of Norfolk, the Cathedral has been a focal point for Arundel ever since. The Cathedral has regular services and concerts and is host to a number of events in Arundel throughout the calendar year. The Cathedral is open daily to the public from 9am – 6pm so pop in and have a look around this majestic building.

Arundel Festivals and Events

Arundel attracts visitors year-round not only due to its historical landmarks, but also its festivals.

Every year during the summer months, Arundel hosts the Arundel festival, one of the largest multi-art festivals in the South with entertainment ranging from music to art to theatre.

In December, Arundel by Candlelight lights up the streets to host its Christmas market. Elegantly lit Christmas trees adorn the buildings in the village alongside a beautifully decorated tree donated to the village by the Duke of Norfolk which creates the centrepiece for this popular event. Visitors to Arundel by Candlelight can enjoy roasted chestnuts, mulled wine and hog roasts as they meander their way around the village streets.

Year-round, on the third Saturday of each month, there is a local farmers’ market hosted in the village centre with vendors selling a wide array of high-quality local produce for visitors and locals to enjoy.

Need a place to stay in Arundel? View our list of holiday rentals in Arundel today.

Reasons to Switch Property Managers?

scones and french press on bed - simple getaway

People may have a holiday let to use as a second home or as a property to utilise as a financial investment renting to guests. Either way, you may use a property management company. Property management companies can do anything from just checking in once a month to full service management, taking care of bookings, cleaning and guest communications. Whatever you hire your property manager for, it is important to have one that provides you with the best possible service for your needs.  

For those with full service management, there are a number of reasons that homeowners may switch from one management company to another. Here are the most commons reasons we have come across:

  1. Paying too much commission for poor service

Property management companies vary on their rates considerably. Annual lease arrangements may charge a management fee as low as 6% whilst on the other end, we have seen rates up to 40% for full service management. It is ok to pay either of these or anything in between, but if the service you are given does not match up to the fee you pay, it can be frustrating.

2. Bad Reviews

Reviews are crucial in this business and bad ones can have a devastating impact. Usually, bad reviews tend to include poor cleanliness, insufficient maintenance or a clumsy check in procedure. Many years ago, property managers and owners used to be able to pay to get their listing to rank higher on the page but those days are long gone. Now, Airbnb and VRBO use specific algorithms that assess reviews, response times, listing quality and other metrics to decide who gets to the top. At Simple Getaway we consistently receive 5* reviews from our guests meaning that we rank highly on holiday let listing sites such as Airbnb and VRBO.

3. Lazy Booking Procedures

Many property managers will only list on certain sites. In the UK, Airbnb is the most popular booking site, but it doesn’t mean that bookings don’t come from elsewhere – they absolutely do!

In Arun, West Sussex, 84% of holiday lets are listed on Airbnb, 10% on VRBO and 6% on both. In Chichester, West Sussex, 77% are listed on Airbnb , 11% on VRBO and 12% on both. In Brighton, East Sussex, 82% are listed on Airbnb, 8% on VRBO and 10% on both. At Simple Getaway we are part of that 6, 12 and 10% that list on both in each of these areas.

What’s more? We list your property on our own website which is a win-win for you and your guests – it is the cheapest option for guests which generates the greatest revenue for you! The more sites you list on, the higher your occupancy rate and ultimately the greater the revenue you receive – make sure you check where your property management company is listing your home to make the most of your investment.

4. Stagnant Marketing

Are your property management company keeping an eye on the market and marketing your property effectively? Travel trends are constantly changing, as evidenced in the recent 2020 pandemic. It is no longer appropriate to list your property for the same rate for every day of the year. Prices should be fluctuated throughout the year to balance revenue and occupancy effectively. At Simple Getaway we track the data to make sure you remain competitive in the market and you don’t slip behind the competition. In fact, during 2020, we utilised this strategy and have managed to get some of our homes in the top 10 performing homes in their area, despite only operating for 6 months of the year!

We are always adapting to make sure our service offering improves and we are giving our owners the best possible for the rates we charge. Find out today what we can offer in comparison to other property management companies!

What to Ask When Considering a Holiday Letting Company

Holiday Home Management | Kitchen | The Bakery | Arundel Holiday Homes | Simple Getaway

Managing a holiday let can be a very time consuming process. Sometimes people buy a holiday let and immediately put the management in the hands of a holiday letting company. Other times, people manage their own holiday let and then switch to holiday letting company to take on the work after experiencing the strain of the work involved.

Either way, when searching for a holiday letting company it is important to do your research and make sure you are asking the right questions. We’ve put together a list of the questions we get asked the most.

What Do Airbnb Property Managers Charge?

Well, that depends. There is a difference between a booking agent, and a full management service. At Simple Getaway, we are a full management service, meaning that when you list your home with us, we take care of everything else, from guest communication, to cleaning, to maintenance etc. Market rates vary between 12%-30% depending on the type of service, and more importantly, the type of holiday letting management. Be careful in signing on for too much or too little, you want to make sure you are getting the right level of service for the amount you are paying.

Where Do You Advertise My Holiday Home?

If the answer is Airbnb then that is great, however, there are various other websites where your property can be listed in order to gain maximum exposure; VRBO, Booking.com and Tripadvisor being the most well known, but smaller niche sites can be popular depending on the type and location of your property. At Simple Getaway, we were selected to appear on ‘The Plum Guide’, a network of some of the best holiday lets in the world. Only the top 3% of homes are selected and our holiday lets made the cut! Contact us and see if we can list you too!

Do You Advertise My Holiday Let on Your Website?

Whilst most companies can’t compete with the big online travel agencies (Airbnb, Booking.com etc), that doesn’t mean that having an online presence is pointless. In fact, when guests book directly, it saves both them and you money as additional fees charged on the big sites are avoided. Direct bookings usually come as a result of repeat guests and recommendations so making sure your holiday let management has a website is a good idea.

What Makes You the Best Holiday Letting Company?

A holiday letting company should know their unique selling point, and why you should choose them to manage your holiday let. At Simple Getaway, we have a few tricks up our sleeve – find out more about us by giving us a call

How Much Does it Cost to Clean a Holiday Let?

Obviously this varies from house to house depending on size and bedroom count. It also depends upon the model that holiday letting company uses. We handle all our cleaning with various cleaning crews and take care of all of the linens to ensure they are clean and crisp for every arrival. Some cleaning companies may not handle the linens so you need to check. Some property managers may charge the guest for the cleaning whereas others may charge the homeowner, some may charge neither! Either way is fine, but it is something you should know before signing on with a holiday letting company.

Is Holiday Letting Profitable?

Are you renting the property out full time, what are your utility bills and maintenance costs, is your home well looked after? Only you will know if your holiday let will be profitable depending upon the bills you pay. However, the best holiday letting companies will be able to give you some advice about how much you are likely to receive in terms of rental income if you rent your home out. At Simple Getaway, we go beyond, and give you real data insights that can show you exactly what your holiday let rental potential could be. Contact us to find out more.

Does Airbnb Offer Property Management Services?

The short answer is no. Airbnb does not have their own property management service, they simply exist as a platform, whereby you can list your own property for rent, or someone else can list it on your behalf. Most property managers would hold a contract with you directly and would then list your property on Airbnb, and/or various other platforms.

What Should I Provide for My Holiday Let and How Do I Furnish My Holiday Rental?

The best property management companies will be able to give you plenty of guidance on what to provide, and how best to furnish your holiday let. We previously wrote a blog on the items you should provide – read the blog here for some ideas:

What to provide in your holiday let

When it comes to furnishing your home, there are definitely some things to consider. The best first step is to consider the use of the property, who your potential guests are likely to be, young couples, business groups, families with young children, pets, elderly visitors. Each of these groups may be geared towards slightly different functionality so it is important to think about. What would you look for in renting a holiday let? Make sure you keep your interiors clean, whilst ensuring that they stand out in a listing. Our team at Simple Getaway is qualified in interior design. We would be happy to give some guidance to our holiday let homeowners and share our past projects portfolio.

Which is the Best Holiday Letting Company?

Simple Getaway! We manage homes in East and West Sussex and would be delighted to hear from you regarding your holiday let. Whatever service you are looking for, please give us a call or send us an email and we would be happy to answer any questions you may have.

Benefits of Using a Holiday Let Management Company

Kitchen | No.42 | Arundel Holiday Homes | Simple Getaway

We are asked many questions by our property owners before listing their property with us. As expected, many questions revolve around the financial aspect and, ‘what do Airbnb managers charge?’. It is an important question and may be the pivoting point between whether or not to choose a property management company for your holiday home. At Simple Getaway, we will be honest about the cost of our services, but we want our owners to understand the benefits of using a holiday let management company, and why we charge what we do.

Holiday Let Management Costs

Hiring a holiday let management company can reduce the time and cost of running the property. From promoting the home, providing customer service for the guests, to cleaning and maintaining the holiday home throughout the year.

We endeavour to make owners and guests happy with their holiday let property but in order to do so, there are lots of things to handle along the way. Below are just some of the things that property management companies do, and why you benefit from hiring one to manage your holiday home.

Handling Guest Enquiries

Guests are extremely important, and without them, you do not reap the financial benefits of listing a holiday let for rent. So, it is important to engage them and then keep them happy during the booking process and beyond.

It is vital for a property manager to respond to guest enquiries as quickly as possible. Often, a guest will target multiple properties they are interested in and if you are the first to respond it is highly likely that they will end up booking your home. We aim to respond to all enquiries immediately and on average, our statistics show that we respond within an hour – pretty good considering some of these come in the middle of the night!

A property management company is dedicated to responding as quickly as possible but without one you may not be able to respond quite so fast. You are probably busy, in a business meeting, doing the school run, enjoying time in a remote holiday destination. All of these things would impact your ability to respond in a timely manner and you run the risk of losing that consumer engagement.

Living Room | The Preston | Brighton Holiday Home | Simple Getaway

Holiday Let Cleaning Management

A good property management company usually has a standardised cleaning schedule for each of their homes, and typically would have more than one cleaning company or staff. If you manage your home yourself, you may clean it yourself, or you may have a cleaner. But what about those instances where the cleaner doesn’t show up, or is unwell?

If this happens with us, we can typically rely on one of our other teams to jump in last minute and help out making sure that a guest turns up to a clean house every time. If you hire a property management company, you can rest assured that each time a guest checks out, your home is being cleaned to a professional standard.

Holiday Let Maintenance

It is inevitable that things will break from time to time and most of the time your guests will understand that. However, it is important that any issue is attended to timely, particularly if there are guests in your home and it is impacting their stay.

As a property management company, we have our own maintenance teams, dedicated to ensuring that your property and all its parts, work as they are meant to. For smaller maintenance items, we are quickly able to have our team on site to assist and will even carry out routine maintenance checks to locate problems ahead of time. Preventative maintenance is key, and we aim to keep potential problems at bay for each of our homes.

Kitchen | Bristol Gardens | Brighton Holiday Homes | Simple Getaway

For more specific work, we have good relationships with a number of professional contractors and can usually get issues attended to quicker than you would as a new customer. These relationships can be crucial particularly when dealing with fundamental issues such as a broken boiler, which must be dealt with very quickly!

Useful Data Insights

We use software that enables us to understand the pricing in the area at any given moment in time. That means we get the most competitive pricing for your property and make sure that you maximise bookings and returns on your holiday let. As well as this, we use a software system that updates these prices across all travel agency platforms every single day ensuring that you are continually optimised at all times.

Oversight

Unlike large national companies, we are local and make sure that we keep an eye on your property throughout the year. From regular check-ins, routine maintenance, high-standard cleaning and top-class technology, we make sure that your property is being looked after. When you list your property with us, you can rest assured that we will make sure your home is kept clean, maintained and booked!

There are many reasons why choosing a property management company can be beneficial for your holiday let. If you have a holiday let and are considering using a property manager, contact us today and we can walk you through the process.