What does a Big Bear Cabin Rental Company really do for the commissions and why is the commission so High?
Destination Big Bear gets asked this question all the time, especially from owners that have had a
We also get asked, “why can I not just do it myself?”
The answer is you can, but it is very time consuming and costly for many factors. You actually in many cases might make less money and still spend a lot of time doing it.
The information below is to help prospective buyers understand that Big Bear is a very unique vacation rental market and has tougher city requirements than other cities.
Here we go !
Most cities such as Palms Springs only deal with 4 to 7 day bookings where as Big Bear’s average booking is less than 3 days which means quite a bit of turnover.
Big Bear also allows a lot more people in a home. A 2400 square foot 4 bedroom home in Palm Springs will only allow 8 people where as in Big Bear 12 people can stay (50% more people), which leads to more wear and tear.
Palm Springs only allows 32 bookings a year based on the above numbers you might have 256 people in your home. In Big Bear with 60 bookings a year and 12 people you can have 720 people.
Big Bear can have terrible weather affecting a lot of the bookings and raising the support needs and owner or management company has to pay.
The City of Big Bear requires every person to check into the office and meet someone in person on a face to face check in. NO VIDEO, NO ELECTRONIC KEYPADS, companies or individuals face a $250.00 fine for each occurrence
- 1099s provided annually to each homeowner
- Monthly Statements
- Annual Revenue Reports
- We carry outstanding balances for homeowners
- We pay your city or county tax every quarter with detailed rent reports from all sources
- In one year there might be 60 bookings leading to over 150 nights.
- To get 60 bookings we talk to over 300 potential guests that can have multiple questions. Communication threads may have 20 messages per inquiry.
- With these stats we might have to have 6,000 communication touch points to get 60 bookings in a year.
- Nearly every inquiry has Big Bear specific questions that require us to provide this information. How? Where do I find? Etc
- Each booking legally has to check into an office, you can not send a tenant to the home using a lock box or use a video doorbell per the city.
- Check in office is open almost around the clock, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.
- Because we are open quite a bit we can respond quicker and within the 1 hour to maintain our response rate.
- Local Deals – We consistently provide free lift tickets, rentals, boat rentals, discounts on restaurant and at marinas
- We collect and pay your taxes every quarter to the city
- We meet annually at no cost to you with city inspectors to pass your home.
- We are the point of contact to the city when
neighborhoodcalls the city about rental
- We have multiple staff members certified by the city to perform
check insand 24/7 code call support
- City Response within 1 hour
- The City has hired software companies to scan all known marketing websites to find owners/companies marketing homes but not registering them and paying TOT.
Cleaning, Linens and Supplies
- We schedule all cleanings with only approved businesses that have licenses
- This requires daily sms to ensure all cleaners know when the guests are leaving and the next guests are coming
- We provide all linens, towels, wash cloths, kitchen towels at our cost
- Each booking has a new sponge, hand soaps, trash bags, trash liners, toilet paper, paper towel
Communication examples to guests
- Road conditions
- Activity questions such as restaurants, marinas
- How do I check in
- Can I check in early – nearly every guest ask the day of check-in
- Can I check out late – nearly every
guestsasks the day of checkout
- Getting tenants out on
dayof check out for back to back cleanings Currentcondition of home reporting
- Trash sites
- Deposit Returns
- Occupancy questions
- Code Requirements of each
- Visits to homes
becausecity code call – cityrequirement
- On all sites, If you do not respond within 1 hour, you lose your ranking in search results
- Our office is open from 7:00 to Midnight nearly every day of the year.
- On staff experts at only $25 per hour to get your home in shape, our real costs are over $30 per hour
- Current handyman rates in Big Bear are $50.00 and are not licensed
- Home supplies such as batteries, light bulbs, tightening things around the home
- Cleaning heater filters
- Annual yard clean up coordination
- Snow removal coordination
- Spa servicing coordination
- Appliance coordination
- Coordinate new requirements annually for city inspection
- Every home is on all OTA’s – Airbnb, VRBO,
Flipkey, Booking.com, Home Away and 150 international sites
- You will get more bookings
- We have over 50 lifestyle domain names that link to Destination Big Bear or BigBearlp.com
- We spend over $500,000 a year on google
- Our Database has 200,000 emails that we market repeat guests too
- SMS Server – we are able to communicate to guests via SMS
- Affiliate partnerships with groups that visit Big Bear such as Spartan Race.
- Destination Big Bear has
boardseat on the Visitors Bureau
- Big Bear City Ordinances requires guests to check in Person (not video nor direct to home), each violation is a $250.00 fine.
- We have a 7500 square foot office with a laundry center.
- Extra Keys on site along with key machine – guests get locked out and lose keys regularly
- We have extra everything – See list here
- Big Bear Lake city ordinances requires support within 15 miles of Big Bear.
- Who cleans your home? It needs to be an employee paying all the insurances or
- We issue 1099’s and W2’s
- Workers comp exemption
- Everyone in your home has a business license
- We carry a $5 million umbrella General Liability
- Extensive Guest Contracts to communicate no liability for slip and falls
- Some Home Owner’s insurance does not cover anyone in the home that is not licensed
- Anyone doing work for a home owner must have a business license with 1099 exemption form or they can be considered an employee
- see here for actual risks that can occur
Tenant Support – While the tenant stays there.
- Wi-fI issues
- Cable Modem
- Ordering UFC
- Shovel steps and walkways
- Deliver Icemelt for safety
- Batteries fail in thermostats
- Interface with all vendors, spas are a very big issue.
- Record home condition reports.
- We provide Brand Connections Swag such as razors, sealed toiletries, power bars when available.
- Because Vendors want to stay on our approved vendor list we negotiate the best rates for services
- Vendors do not take advantage of our
- Emergency services such as Heaters, plumbers and electricians will answer our call after hours and weekends
- Restaurants and Activities provide us discounted coupons that we can bundle with bookings
- Integrated with all spa companies your homes bookings to ensure spas are cleaned between booking – – Huge risks if not cleaned: https://www.google.com/search?q=hot+tub+folliculitis&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiI7cmW1PDgAhVRs6wKHbEqAooQ_AUIDigB&biw=1536&bih=775 – This can lead to thousands of dollars to the homeowner if a guest contracts this.
- We have very expensive software that
tellus occupancy rates for every type of home for every weekend.
- We know the average costs for a 2, 3, 4, 5 bedroom with spa, without
- We use VRBO market maker and AIRBNB smart pricing
- We also are integrated with bigbear.com which can provides us with reports as to how many homes in sector not booked and how many people currently looking
- We hope this document explains why Vacation Rental Commissions are so much higher than normal
on rentals commissions Yesany home ownercan do vacation rentals on their own, but there is still going to be a great deal of cost and time coordinating all aspects and the owner needs to treat it as a business.
- Home Owners need to establish strong relationships with local vendors and be prepared to work their home every day and for multiple hours a day during peaks times.