Matthew Metros

Matt has five years of real estate experience prior to working for Manage My STR. He has helped hundreds of clients invest across multiple real estate markets. Feel free to ask him any questions you have about Manage My STR, investing, or this listing.

A Comprehensive Guide on the Importance of Guest Communications in the Short-Term Rental Industry


Guest communications in the short-term rental industry involve all interactions between hosts and their guests, from the initial booking inquiry to the post-stay review. Effective communication strategies are paramount to delivering a seamless guest experience, bolstering your property’s reputation, and ensuring repeat bookings. In the world of vacation rentals, where the competition is fierce, it’s the attention to detail in guest communications that can make your property stand out. Let’s unravel the magic of effective communication in the short-term rental industry and learn how it can elevate the guest experience and boost your business.

The Benefits of Improving Your Guest Communication Strategies for Your Vacation Rentals

Exceptional guest communication strategies can significantly enhance the quality of your vacation rental customer service. They create a welcoming environment, provide clear guidelines, and help resolve any issues promptly. Improved guest communication can foster trust, leading to positive reviews and ultimately higher booking rates. From the moment a guest shows interest in your property to the time they leave, every interaction matters. By prioritizing guest communication, you can deliver a memorable stay that will have guests coming back and recommending your property to others… Not to mention, Airbnb will recognize this in their algorithm and list you higher.

How to Create a Communication System that Can Improve Guests’ Experience

Building a guest communication system that enhances the customer experience involves careful planning and attention to detail. Begin by identifying key touchpoints in the guest journey, from pre-booking inquiries to post-stay follow-ups. Ensure that you respond promptly, provide accurate information, and remain courteous and professional at all times.

At Manage My STR, we have the following checks: After their initial booking request, 1 days prior to checking in, Check-in Day, 1 day after check-in, 1 day before check-out, and the day of check-out.

Consider creating a comprehensive guide that provides all the essential information about your property and the local area. This could be sent digitally prior to arrival or left in a visible location in the rental property. Furthermore, a messaging platform designed for vacation rentals can streamline your communications and ensure nothing falls through the cracks.

Tools and Services That Can Help You Automate Your Vacation Rental Business’s Communication Processes

As your business grows, managing guest communication manually can become time-consuming. Thankfully, there are numerous automation tools designed specifically for short-term rentals. These can help you send automated messages to guests at predetermined times, reducing the risk of missed messages and speeding up response times.

Messaging services for vacation rentals can also be beneficial. These can provide an integrated platform for communicating with guests, sending automated responses, and managing inquiries efficiently. By utilizing these automation tools and services, you can free up more of your time to focus on improving other aspects of your business while ensuring your guests receive timely and helpful communication.

The Challenges and Pitfalls of Implementation

While implementing a communication system can vastly improve your business, it is not without challenges. It’s important to strike a balance between automation and personalized communication. Guests appreciate the efficiency of automated messages but also value a personal touch.

Moreover, setting up these systems can take time and require a certain level of technical knowledge. Remember, an effective communication strategy is a journey, not a destination. Regularly revisit your strategy to ensure it remains effective and adjust as necessary. By staying adaptable and guest-centric, you can navigate these challenges and keep your vacation rental business thriving.

Boost Your Occupancy: A Property Manager’s Guide to Marketing Short-Term Rentals

Boost Your Occupancy: A Property Manager’s Guide to Marketing Short-Term Rentals


As a property manager, your goal is to maximize occupancy for your short-term rentals. To do so, you need to know how to market your rental effectively and efficiently. This blog post will provide you with key insights on how to boost your occupancy and better manage your short-term rental property. From understanding your target audience to leveraging OTAs, we’ll discuss a range of strategies that you can implement to help you make the most out of your rental property. With a good understanding of how to market your short-term rentals, you can ensure that you are getting the most out of your property management efforts.

Understand your Target Audience

When it comes to marketing short-term rentals, one of the most important things you can do is understand your target audience. Knowing who you’re trying to reach will help you craft messaging and promotions that will resonate with them, ultimately leading to more bookings.
So, who is your target audience? It’s likely that it’s a mix of leisure travelers and business travelers, but it’s important to dig a little deeper to get a better understanding of who exactly you’re trying to attract. Consider things like:

  • Age range: Are you primarily targeting millennials, families, or retirees?
  • Interests and activities: What draws people to your area? Is it outdoor recreation, cultural experiences, or something else?
  • Geographic location: Are you targeting travelers from nearby cities or further afield?

By taking the time to really understand your target audience, you can tailor your marketing efforts to better meet their needs and desires. For example, if you’re targeting families, you might emphasize the child-friendly amenities of your rental (e.g. high chairs, pack ‘n plays) in your listings and on social media. If you’re targeting business travelers, you might highlight your rental’s proximity to conference centers and other key business locations.

In short, the more you know about your target audience, the more effective your marketing efforts will be. Take the time to research and analyze your audience, and you’ll be on your way to a higher occupancy rate in no time.

Optimize Your Listings

When it comes to short-term rentals, one of the most important aspects of your marketing strategy is optimizing your property listings. This involves creating detailed, informative, and visually appealing listings that highlight the unique features and benefits of your property.

To optimize your listings, start by choosing the right platforms to list your property on. Consider popular vacation rental sites like Airbnb, VRBO, and HomeAway, as well as niche platforms that cater to specific types of travelers or destinations.

Once you’ve chosen your platforms, it’s time to focus on the content of your listings. This includes creating compelling headlines, using high-quality photos and videos, and providing detailed descriptions of your property and its amenities.

Be sure to highlight any unique selling points of your property, such as its location, views, or proximity to popular attractions. Also, make sure to include any special promotions or discounts that you may be offering to entice potential guests.

Finally, don’t forget about the importance of guest reviews. Encourage your guests to leave positive reviews on your listing pages, as this will help to increase your visibility and credibility on these platforms.

By optimizing your listings, you can make your short-term rental stand out in a crowded market and attract more bookings from travelers looking for the perfect vacation experience.

Vetting Guests

Vetting guests is an important part of property management for several reasons. First and foremost, it helps to ensure that you are paid on time. When you screen potential guests, you can check their credit history and employment status to make sure they have the financial means to pay their rent and any other fees. This can help to reduce the risk of late or missed payments, which can have a negative impact on your profitability.

In addition to improving your financial stability, vetting guests can also help to minimize disruptions and maintenance issues. By carefully selecting guests who are responsible and respectful of your property, you can reduce the likelihood of damage or excessive wear and tear. This can save you money on repairs and maintenance, and it can also help to preserve the value of your rental properties.

Finally, vetting guests can lead to higher profitability over the long term. By attracting responsible, reliable guests, you can build a reputation for offering high-quality rentals. This can make it easier to attract new guests and maintain a high occupancy rate, which can translate into higher revenue and profits.

Finally, vetting guests can lead to higher profitability over the long term. By attracting responsible, reliable guests, you can build a reputation for offering high-quality rentals. This can make it easier to attract new guests and maintain a high occupancy rate, which can translate into higher revenue and profits.

  1. Obtain a rental application: This should include information about the potential tenant’s employment, rental history, and credit history.
  2. Check references: Ask for references from previous landlords, employers, and personal references. This can give you a sense of the tenant’s reliability and responsibility.
  3. Run a credit check: A credit check can provide information about the tenant’s financial stability and creditworthiness.
  4. Verify employment: Make sure the tenant is employed and can afford the rent.
  5. Consider additional screening: Depending on your property and location, you may want to consider additional screening measures, such as criminal background checks or tenant insurance.

By following these steps, you can make informed decisions about who to rent to and help ensure a smooth and profitable property management experience.

Smart Guidelines for Vacation Property Maintenance

What is property Maintenance?

Property maintenance is the process of preserving a residential, commercial, apartment, or hospitality building and its immediate surroundings through a set of specific maintenance activities.

Why is Vacation Rental Maintenance so important?

Regular vacation rental property maintenance consists of specific tasks that prevent or slow down the normal wear and tear of your vacation rental property. Maintaining your home consistently can make the difference between getting a good guest review and a mediocre one. It can help you save time and money by avoiding costly repairs. And, most importantly, it can help drive a steady flow of bookings.

Regular maintenance is important for various reasons. Not only does it help to ensure the safety of your guests or long-term tenants, but it also has long-term benefits for you as a property owner. Guests want vacation rentals that are well designed and well kept, inside and out.

Fruitful Tips for vacation rental maintenance

Here’s how to stay on top of your vacation home’s maintenance to keep it in prime condition all year long.

Perform In-depth Inspection:

Even though some tasks only need to be completed once a year, the same does not apply when it comes to inspecting your property. It is advised that you complete a routine inspection once a quarter by walking around your property. Tour your property with a discerning eye, similar to how a home inspector would. The key is to catch things early before they become a massive headache. Check for any pest or water damage. Test your outlets for any outages and faucets for any plumbing issues. Don’t overlook your home’s exterior—overgrown trees and encroaching roots can cause major damage down the road.

Add smart home technology

Technology helps keep an eye on your vacation property, no matter how far away you are. If you plan on being away from your second home for an extended period of time, consider adding some smart home gadgets. Security cameras with Wi-Fi let you keep an eye on your property, while smart lighting apps program your lights to come on at various intervals, making it seem like you’re home even when you’re not. And a variety of smart home gadgets can alert you to potential maintenance issues, from failing HVAC systems to water leaks.

Exterior maintenance:

This refers to upkeep related to a property’s exterior—also known as grounds maintenance—including cleaning of a building’s exterior, roof gutters, and drains. It also includes landscaping and gardening, repairs, snow removal in common areas, and graffiti removal.

Interior maintenance:

This includes keeping the plumbing, electrical, and HVAC systems in working order for all units and common areas, and making repairs quickly when they’re needed.

Safety checks:

Safety checks include checking and maintenance of smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors. They also cover proactive inspections of electrical and mechanical systems and periodic safety inspections of the property and grounds.

Prepare for the seasons:

Some vacation homes require even more maintenance based on extreme seasonal changes where they’re located. Beach houses could be exposed to potential thunderstorms and strong winds during hurricane season. Meanwhile, mountain cabins can be subject to freezing temps and snow in the winter. Preparing a vacation home for winter conditions can mean checking the roof, protecting outdoor furniture, draining the water from your pipes, and insulating your home properly.

Assemble a vacation rental maintenance team:

No one expects you to know how to clean your pool, inspect your pipes, and check the roof yourself. Whether you live across town or across the country from your vacation home, hiring the right people to work on the right things is one of the best ways to take care of your property. Find vendors you can trust, then put them on speed dial. You’ll never know when you’ll need to call in a local arborist to inspect a tree in your backyard or an HVAC technician when the heat stops working mid-winter.

The best solution: Rely on a trusted professional property manager

In the event that you work with Manage My STR to deal with your vacation home, we come prepared with a checked Rolodex of vendors and maintenance services in each market-from exterior decorators to handymen. Our nearby groups will frequently set up any arrangements, work with the vendors directly, and handle any administrative work and follow-up.

Performing standard support on your rental home will save you from making repair costs in the future, in addition, to guaranteeing that guests just experience your home in its top-quality condition. Follow this guide to help with your home’s upkeep throughout the year.

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Best Smart Lock for Airbnb


Best Smart Lock For Airbnb.

Homeowners and business owners alike stand to benefit greatly from the enhanced security and convenience provided by modern smart locks, and the ability to remotely and securely grant access to a property makes this impressive innovation especially useful for Airbnb hosts. 

Some of the benefits include:

  • Freedom, flexibility & peace of mind
  • Streamline guest access – Integrated with Airbnb booking
  • Increase accessibility – No more guest lockout
  • Increased safety & security around who and when somebody is entering your home
  • Managing entry across multiple properties
  • Enhancing your guest experience

We have compiled through years of experience the top locks that help us track & manage our properties across the country. We endorse any of the following locks for our clients as it allows us to operate across the country while delivering most seamless hospitality experience for our guests.

Download your PDF today!

Checklist for Cleaning Your Short-Term Rental

Checklist for Cleaning Your Short-Term Rental

Ultimate Airbnb Cleaning Checklist


Cleaning your property is a very important part of owning a vacation rental. You could have a beautiful property, but if it is unclean and unkempt, that will take away from the appeal. When cleaning your rental, you want to make sure your cleaning team doesn’t miss a step. To assist in this, we’ve provided an Airbnb cleaning checklist as well as some tips and products to use in each part of your property.

What Is an Airbnb Cleaning Checklist?


It is no surprise that one of the most important components influencing a vacation rental guest’s experience is the property’s overall cleanliness. This is where an Airbnb cleaning checklist comes in.

An Airbnb house cleaning checklist is a physical or digital list of tasks for hosts or cleaning services to complete in between guests’ stays.

Whether you manage a bed and breakfast, a cabin, or any other type of holiday home, cleaning can be quite a chore. To make the task easier, use a vacation rental cleaning checklist to help ensure happy guests and more positive reviews every time.

Example Housekeeping Checklist Template for Airbnb
Below, we’ve provided an Airbnb cleaning checklist template for each main room in a short-term rental. Use these vacation rental checklist templates as you clean your property, or give it to your professional cleaner.

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List of Items for Launching Your Short Term Rental

List of Items for Launching Your Short Term Rental

Prepped to Please


Just like any business venture, there’s planning, preparation, and good ol’ fashioned hard work that goes into making every vacation home rental ‘guest-ready.’ As a property manager, you’re not just handing over the keys to a roof over guests’ heads; you’re responsible for shaping their whole experience. Chances are, you’d like to shape an enjoyable one at that.

While there are many great ways to provide the best stay for your guests, when it comes to buying certain household items, you’ll want to have all your bases covered.

There’s always room for you to create a 5-star Airbnb experience, and that power lies beyond
mini-shampoos. By making sure your Airbnb listings are stacked with the essentials, not only will your guests feel taken care of – they will also be much more likely to leave you a stellar review. Happy, comfortable guests = positive reviews = more bookings, and better yet, repeat business!


01. The Bathroom

To rival the best hotels around, be sure to keep your properties stocked with these bathroom basics that most travelers leave back home:

○ Bath Towels (2 per guest)
○ Beach Towels (if relevant)
○ Towel Hooks
○ Toilet Paper
○ Feminine Products
○ Hair Dryer
○ Magnified Makeup Mirror
○ Shower Hanger (for toiletries)
○ Toiletries (buy in bulk)
○ Hand Soap
○ Shampoo
○ Conditioner
○ Body Wash
○ Combs
○ Toothpaste
○ Disposable Toothbrush
○ Disposable Razors
○ Body Lotion


02. Sleeping Quarters

Guests tend to be quite specific when it comes to their slumber, so be sure your sleeping areas are complete with these bedroom staples.

○ Bed Linens and Pillows (for laundering & restocking linen services)
○ Extra Linens, Blankets, and Pillows
○ Air Con, Heater, and/or Fan
○ Garbage Bin
○ A Box of Tissues
○ Pen & Note Pad
○ Bedside Table
○ Bedside Lamp
○ Foot Rug
○ Alarm Clock
○ Dresser and/or Shelves (at least one unit)
○ Safe for Passports and Valuables
○ Disposable Ear Plugs


03. The Grub Hub

The kitchen is a hub of action where everyone tends to convene, so staying stocked on these goods will keep your guests happy, fed, and hopefully tidy as well.

○ Teas & Instant Coffee
○ Tea Kettle / Water Heater
○ Milk
○ Salt & Pepper
○ Sugar & Sweetener
○ Butter
○ Dishes, Cups, and Silverware
(at least one set of two for every 2 guests)
○ Pots and Pans
○ Extra Light Bulbs
○ Tupperware
○ Cleaning Supplies (buy in bulk)
○ Hand Soap
○ Dishwashing Liquid
○ Carpet Cleaner
○ All-Purpose Cleaner
○ Bleach
○ Disinfectant
○ Trash Bags
○ Broom
○ Dustpan


04. The Lounge

This is where your guests will really kick off their shoes and relax, so keeping the lounge areas equipped with these goods will allow guests to really feel like they’re at home.

○ Books and Magazines
○ Full-Length Mirror
○ Desk or Workspace
○ Coloring Books and Crayons
○ Pens and Pencils
○ Playing Cards and Board Games


05. A Little Something Extra

Guests really appreciate when you go that extra mile and keep your accommodations stocked with those extras that go beyond the basics to really provide a personalized experience.

○ Washing Machine
○ Dryer or Clothing Rack
○ Cable
○ DVD/Blu-Ray Assortment
○ Smart TV
(so guests can sign in to their streaming accounts)
○ Clothing Iron and Ironing Board
○ Adaptors
○ Free WiFi
○ Bluetooth Speakers
○ Keyless Entry System
○ Universal Charger
○ Smart Thermostat
○ Bathrobes
○ Slippers
○ Complimentary Bottle of Wine
○ Personalized Welcome Note


06. Better Safe Than Sorry

Providing these items might mean going the extra mile, but think of how pleased your guests will be when you can respond to their inquiries with a ‘Yep, it’s in there.’

○ Functioning Smoke Detector
○ Fire Extinguisher
○ First Aid Kit (buy in bulk)
○ Emergency Numbers
○ Absorbent Compress Dressings
○ Sterile Gauze Pads
○ Triangular Bandages
○ Roller Bandages
○ Adhesive Bandages
○ Adhesive Cloth Tape
○ Scissors
○ Antiseptic Wipes
○ Antibiotic Ointment
○ Hydrocortisone Ointment
○ Instant Cold Compress
○ Non-Latex Gloves
○ Tweezers
○ Thermometer


Five-Star Ready

Hopefully, this checklist will help you ensure that no details slip through the cracks, as well as provide you with some new ideas of what you can add to your Airbnb listings to make them the ultimate home-away-from-home for your guests. Guaranteeing that your guests have exactly what they need (and more!) will set the tone for a positive travel experience, and will ultimately help you stand out from the crowd.

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