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The price is right - dos and don'ts of pricing your holiday property

Stef Scott

To maximise profit, pricing your property is a key tasks to get right.

Follow our dos and don'ts to get this right.

Do set competitive rates, but make sure you’re on a par with properties in your area

A simple bit of online listings research will help you check out the competition, and how much they’re charging. Just make sure you’re comparing like for like in terms of property size, amenities, number of beds and so on.

Holiday let owners at the top of their game can earn up to £40,000 a year, and this figure rises for large properties and those in plum locations. [1]

Owners who are new to the property rental game can be tempted to drop their prices low in order to get some early bookings. However, if your rates seem disproportionately low in comparison to the local competition, this can have a negative impact. Low pricing can imply lower quality, so guests may question why your property seems cheaper. Remember that occupancy isn’t everything - it is better to focus on higher spend guests than bargain basement ones looking for a rock bottom deal.

Do consider how much it costs you to run your holiday rental

In addition to mortgage repayments, you’ll also have other fixed costs, such as taxes and insurance to factor in. Then, there are additional costs that may fluctuate, such as phone/internet, ad hoc repairs and general upkeep, water rates, electricity and gas. Draw up a list of all of your expenses to ensure that the pricing you opt for comfortably covers these costs.

Do revisit your pricing structure frequently

When you first start out it’s a good idea to publish competitive rates that are comparable to similar properties in your location. It is good practice to update these as the market evolves over time, so don’t forget to regularly review your pricing.

Do keep your pricing up to date for the year ahead

This one is a no-brainer. Having your pricing in place for the next 18 months - 2 years is absolutely vital. Lots of people book holidays and short breaks well in advance.

On average, we have found that owners who don’t update their pricing for the year ahead could miss out on around 15% of potential bookings.

Don't let this be you!

TravelNest Tip: Don’t end your calendar on the 31st of December. Christmas and New Year bookings are always in high demand, so show future pricing right up until the end of the summer season, two years from now. Also bear in mind that January is the most popular month of the year for bookings, so don’t leave it too late to get your pricing sorted.

Do be as flexible as you possibly can

Having stipulations such as a five-night minimum stay or Saturday-to-Saturday rentals can be restrictive for guests. Try to be as flexible as you can, as this has a direct and noticeable impact on booking volume. Can you open your property up to a larger audience looking for more flexibility, such as mid-week bookings for example?

Don't upset potential customers by being anything but transparent

Don’t forget to factor in additional costs for services such as cleaning, parking and laundry. These can start to add up, so think about how they will affect your overall pricing. It’s likely that the majority of guests will want their payment to include these fees. People don’t appreciate being faced with additional charges, especially if they feel ‘hidden’. Roll them up into a total rate if you can. You don’t want to put off potential customers with lots of hidden extra costs.

TravelNest Tip: As booking channels handle additional costs slightly differently, it is a good idea to have an understanding of how each channel handles and displays your additional fees to guests, and specifically where in the booking process these are shown. Additionally, most channels apply booking fees, so ensure you are aware of these so you can adjust prices accordingly.

Don't complicate things

Split your pricing into easy-to-follow blocks, such as high and low season, and notable holiday breaks such as Christmas, New Year and Easter. Offering short break packages, from one, two or three nights, at certain times of the year is another nice way to market to your audience, and can really help you get more bookings during those tricky off-season weeks. Just make sure you show the total cost to avoid confusion.

Don't worry too much with hotel or B&B comparisons

Hotels have high rates but remember, your property will offer more space, which means you could look at similar or potentially higher pricing. With B&Bs, unless you’re marketing to the weekend crowd, it’s best not to worry too much about using their rates as a barometer.

Find out more

TravelNest gets your property seen in all the right places. We can list your property on over 30 of the best booking channels including Airbnb, Booking. com, Expedia, HomeAway, TUI and TripAdvisor.

Airbnb, Booking.com, Expedia, HomeAway, TripAdvisor, TUI

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