Frequently Asked Questions

LISTING YOUR RENTAL
FINDING A RENTAL
LISTING YOUR RENTAL
How will an interested renter contact me?

Renters will contact you directly by telephone or email from your listing. All rental advertisements provide the owner's contact information, however, your email address will be hidden from visitors.

How do I add photos to my listing?

If you would like photos posted with your listing, simply login here then click on Manage Photos. There you can select the photos from your local computer you wish to upload and store with your listing. You can change the photos any time you wish, as often as you wish.

What size do my photos need to be?

Potential guests want to see large, high-quality photos. It helps them trust the property description and greatly improves the performance of the listing. The uploaded images should be at least 400 pixels wide or 300 pixels high. Please contact us if you need help!

I'm having difficulty uploading my photos?

If you are currently trying to upload your photos, this is where you select photos that reside on your computer to be transferred to our web site. This part should NOT be filled in with a web address.

Once you are on the Photos tab for your listing, click on the Browse button for a dialog box and navigate until you find the image file you want to upload. Click on the file, then click Open. This will set the path to your image file in the text box. Next, click Upload Photo and wait while the file is uploaded from your computer to our web site. The screen will not change until the transfer is complete. If the file is large or your connection is slow, this step could take several minutes.

What if my photos are already somewhere out on the Internet?

If you have no photos on your local computer, but have some on the Internet you will have to go fetch them first. You can download them to your local computer and then upload them to our site. To download photos, use your browser to view the photos, and place the mouse pointer over the photo itself. Click the right mouse button. A menu will appear. Select "Save Picture As" on the menu. This will bring up a dialog box that will give you a choice of where to save the photo and under what name. The original name of the photo will appear. You should change it to something simple using only letters, numbers and dashes. This can be done by clicking in the area with the filename and changing it. Photos should be saved somewhere on your computer that you will remember, like on your desktop. Click the "Save" button to transfer the photo. Once downloaded to your local computer you can upload them to our site using the instructions above.

Important note about thumbnail photos: Often when viewing a web site that contains your photos, a smaller photo will be displayed and when you click it, a larger copy of the photo will be displayed. The smaller photo is called a thumbnail. When taking photos from the internet, make sure you do not save the thumbnail. Click the thumbnail and save the larger photo, as described above. If you submit the thumbnail to us, it will show up as small and/or blurry on your listing.

How do I modify my listing?

You have full access to your listing 24 hours a day. You can modify any portion of your listing at any time, including the pictures. To make changes simply click on the "Owner Login" link. Once logged in, click "Edit Listing" and then use the tabs on top to navigate to the appropriate section of your listing.

How do I change my email address, password and contact information?

Go to the "Owner Login" link. Once logged in, click on “My Profile” - you can make all changes from a single page. If necessary, each listing can have separate contact information by clicking on “Edit Listing.”

How do I request a new city or location be added?

If you are posting your property and do not see your city or location, just enter it into the "Request New Location" form. We will research your request and get back to you. Until a decision is made, we suggest you place your listing in the closest listed region.

What is the cost to list a vacation rental?

Our annual subscription fee for vacation rentals is $299 per listing. There are no additional fees or commissions charged on any bookings generated from the website.

Do you offer any discounts?

Yes, we offer a discount based on spending over the last 12 months. Current discount levels are:

- Spend $800 or more, get 10% off
- Spend $1000 or more, get 15% off
- Spend $1500 or more, get 20% off
- Spend $2000 or more, get 25% off
- Spend $3000 or more, get 30% off

Is there a direct URL to my listing?

Yes, there is a direct link to each property you list. You are more than welcome to access your listings directly by your listing id number.

The URL for your listing will be
www.vacationhomerentals.com/YourIdNumber

Make sure to put your id number in place of YourIdNumber in the above URL.

For example, if one of your properties is listing id #28564, the URL to your property would be:
http://www.vacationhomerentals.com/28564

Your id number will never change. And you do not need to navigate to get there. Feel free to use the URL any way you wish.

How are your listing results sorted?

The default sort criteria is:

1. Listing Type - Platinum listings appear above Gold listings which appear above Silver listings which appear above Bronze listings which appear above Basic listings.

2. Photos - properties with photos appear above properties without photos.

3. Rates - properties with rates appear above properties without rates.

4. Random Sort - listings with an identical status above are then randomly re-sorted every hour.

Why aren't my external links working?

External links are not enabled on Trial or Basic listings. Please see our listing plan comparison.

I responded to an inquiry from a renter and it bounced. Can you help me?

Unfortunately, if a message is returned to you undelivered, we cannot provide you with the correct email address to contact the person who sent the inquiry. Form based inquiries must ask the sender to enter an email address. There is no way to verify the validity of this address before sending the inquiry. It is up to the sender to ensure the email address provided exists and is typed in correctly. About 1 in 1,000 inquiries are undeliverable due to spelling errors in the email address. Once in a while it is possible to guess the address by checking for common misspellings in the address (ex. Yahoo.con). Vacation Home Rentals cannot locate the correct address for undeliverable emails provided by prospective renters.

I'm not receiving my inquiries?

If you find that emails are not being delivered to your email address, first test your listing by sending yourself a test inquiry. If you do not receive the test within two hours, click on the "Owner Login" link. Once logged in, click "Tips" and follow the instructions to whitelist email from Vacation Home Rentals. If this doesn't fix the problem, please contact us.

Why am I getting plenty of visits/inquiries but no bookings?

Perhaps your rental rate is too high. Compare it with other owners in your area and bedroom size, just as the vacationers do. Our belief is that if you take any given ten rentals in an area, 3 will get 50% of the inquiries, 6 will split the remaining 50% and one will get very few. The main determinant? Price.

Can you list or modify my home for me?

Unfortunately, we cannot list or modify your home for you. Please use the "Owner Login" link to modify your listing. If you require help with changes or photos, please see other questions in this FAQ.

Can I include a second or third rental unit on my property listing?

No. We ask that each listing advertise no more than one vacation rental. This is so that travelers visiting the site can sort search results based on number of bedrooms and bathrooms and be able to accurately compare rental prices from one listing to another.

Another owner copied my listing text and/or photos?

Since we do not copyright your listing text or photos, unfortunately there isn't anything we can do to help. We recommend you ask the owner to remove any copied material in a non-threatening manner. If they refuse, we will co-operate as required by any legal proceeding.

I received a suspicious email, what do I do?

Usually emails with poor grammar, spelling, odd use of capital letters and/or asking you to wire money or participate in an unusual bank transaction is a scam. The sender is usually attempting to obtain money, personal information or your email address. We recommend that you let us know you received this through our service and delete the message without responding. For further information about internet fraud and fake check scams, see fraud.org

How can I protect myself from potential fraud?

Be sure to provide a property lease/legal agreement, and insist on exact payment. One popular scam is the “Renter Overpayment Scam” where a renter will send you an inquiry which may seem legitimate and suggest he sends you more than your rental fees and ask you wire back the difference. The check that he will send is fake (the bank takes several weeks to catch it) and by then you have sent the difference back and will be unable to recover it. We suggest you insist on exact payment or if you do accept an overpayment wait at least 30 days before returning any funds. See fraud.org for more information.

What is the difference between Vacation Home Rentals and Vacation Rentals by Owner?

Please compare the differences at VHR and VRBO. Both provide similar services and are major players in the fast growing vacation rental industry.

What should I know about vacation rental sales tax?

Start by contacting your city, county and state governments about requirements specific to your location. Ask about registering your property. Which governmental entities require registration for your area? Ask how much sales tax you should collect and how often these payments are due to the authorities. Generally, these taxes range from 5% to 15% tax on the total rent charges.

How do I make a payment?

To make a payment an owner must log into their account and click Renew, which is located to the right of the listings on the main login screen.

All payments extend the existing expiration date of the listing or the date the payment was received, whichever is LATER.

What is auto-renewal billing?

Our hassle-free Auto Renewal feature makes renewing your listing even easier. With this feature in place, your subscription will automatically renew at the end of its term, rather than expiring. This ensures you will continue to receive uninterrupted service.

Automatic renewal applies to all subscriptions paid by credit card. At the expiration of your current term, your subscription will automatically renew for an additional term of the same duration as the initial term and at the current subscription rate.

If you would like to turn off auto-renewal, set Auto Renew to No in your Owner Profile prior to your subscription's current expiration date. Your subscription will remain active until the listing's expiration date, but it will not be automatically renewed once it expires.

What is your refund policy?

If you renew your subscription, or if your subscription automatically renews under its terms of your subscription, your listing will remain online for the entire subscription period without refund. If you sell your property and no longer wish for the listing to remain online, please contact us and we can remove the listing; however, no refund will be owed.

FINDING A RENTAL
Does Vacation Home Rentals own or rent properties directly?

No. Vacation Home Rentals is a service which allows vacation rental owners/managers to advertise their vacation rentals and helps potential renters to find a suitable vacation rental property. To rent properties, you contact the owners/managers directly using the contact information provided with each vacation rental listing.

How do I contact vacation rental Owners/Managers?

Vacation Home Rentals consists of thousands of vacation rental properties available directly from owners and property managers. Arrangements for rent or lease are made directly with the owners/managers. Each listing on the site includes a phone number and/or email address. All inquiries should be sent to the vacation rental owner or manager. To email owners, click on the "Contact Owner" tab of the listing. You can use this form to request a reservation or ask questions to the vacation rental owner/manager. For the most timely and efficient exchange with the owner or manager, provide as much detailed information as you possibly can. Give the dates you are inquiring about and if your dates are flexible, note that too. List how many people, adults and children. If you have a pet that you wish to bring along, be sure to include that information. If you have any special needs or questions, do not hesitate to ask. Remember, most often you will be speaking to an owner or manager who knows the area very well and can be a very useful resource in helping you choose the right place for your next vacation as well as activities and attractions once you get there.

I have contacted the vacation rental owner/manager and have not heard back from them. Why?

One common reason is that the vacation rental owner is on vacation! Dealing with owners/managers will not always be as easy as contacting a hotel or resort. Most owners/managers respond within 24-48 hours. If your initial contact was an email, try contacting them via telephone if the number is provided (it would be located near the bottom of their property listing page). Although we encourage our owner/managers to respond whether they are booked or not, a small percentage may not respond to all inquiries on a timely basis. In these cases, we recommend you find an alternative property with a more responsive and considerate vacation rental owner.

How do I know the properties advertised are legitimate?

The online service we provide for vacationers is comparable to that offered by a newspaper or magazine through which vacation homes are advertised.

We do not inspect the properties that list on our website so there is no guarantee. While fraud is extremely rare, it can happen. Proceed cautiously with international payments using a money order or wire transfer. Warning signs include an unusually low price, uncertainly regarding the exact property location, or any suspicious behavior of the property owner or manager. The best way to avoid potential problems is to do your homework. We suggest talking to the owners/managers on the telephone versus strictly email. If you have concerns after speaking with the owner/manager, then ask them for a list of past renters that you may contact. For addition information please see our fraud prevention tips page.

How do I handle payments?

Payments are made directly to the vacation rental owner/manager. Since each vacation rental is individually owned and operated, the payment methods and schedules will vary. Typically the owner/manager will require a reservation deposit, then the balance to be paid in one or two payments. Most owners/managers require full rent plus a deposit paid prior to the rental period. Payment methods will vary also, but most will take personal checks. Credit cards or PayPal may also be an option. Payments made using a wire transfer, money order or personal check typically cannot be recovered in the event that your accommodation is not supplied as promised so extra caution is recommended. Please see our fraud prevention tips page for additional information.

What type of pre arrival instructions should I expect?

In addition to directions to the property, you should be provided with either a key or the name of the person who will greet you at the rental, as well as the name and telephone number of some one at the location who you can contact if anything goes wrong. If a security deposit is due on arrival, the expectation is that it will be paid in cash, local currency, check or traveler’s check.

What if something goes wrong while I am there?

Many owners/managers are very conscientious about their maintenance and do a lot of preventative measure to ensure that things will not go wrong. But in the unlikely event that something does break while you’re there, simply call the owner/manager. The owner/manager should be able to get the problem resolved quickly and professionally.

Can I get a refund?

If you have to cancel your trip (especially at the last minute), you may forfeit a portion or all of your rental fees. There are ways to protect yourself. First, make sure you know what the cancellation policies are for the property you are renting.

Second, consider purchasing Trip Cancellation Insurance for added protection. If your trip has to be cancelled for covered reasons such as illness, accident, death of a family member or traveling companion, jury duty, weather conditions which cause delay/cancellation of travel, or fire or flood in your home, this coverage protects your investment and will reimburse the normally non-refundable payments you make for your vacation rental, airline tickets and other covered travel related fees.

What languages can I use to communicate with owners/managers?

Typically, most vacation rental owners/managers will be able to respond to inquiries in English along with the language spoken where their property is located. Many owners/managers speak multiple languages and some even note which languages they speak within their listing.

What currency are prices shown in? What currency can I pay in?

Prices in the listing summaries are shown in US Dollars for comparison purposes. Prices on the individual listings are shown in the currency of the property owner's/manager's choice as indicated on the listing. You should confirm the final price and currency of the payment with the vacation rental owner/manager.

What is the "Please save my information" check box?

When submitting an inquiry to a property owner the information you enter into the Contact Owner form can be saved and re-entered for you automatically for subsequent inquiries. Be sure the "Please save my information" check box is checked to enable this feature. Unchecking the box and submitting the inquiry will forget your saved information. This feature requires cookies to be enabled on your browser. Disabling or blocking cookies will not allow this feature to function. For more information about removing your cookies, please click here.