10 Fall Tasks

There’s just something about the leaves falling and the winter approaching that motivates me to spend a couple of days down at the cottage tidying up after a long summer of rentals, and preparing it for the next season.  Even if your location doesn’t have distinct seasons, schedule a complete audit a couple of times a year to ensure the property is in tip-top shape and never gets that ‘used’ or ‘run-down’ feel. 

Here’s a few additional tasks to maintain every aspect of your vacation rental:

1.    Deep clean
It should go without saying that keeping a vacation rental spotlessly clean is the number one priority at all times of the year.  Guests expect cleanliness as standard so failing in this respect can impact feedback on every other aspect or amenity of the property. Schedule a deep cleaning of the property at least twice a year.

2.    Linen audit

Go through all sheets, towels, kitchen and dining linens, and remove any that show signs of age, staining, or wear.  Most will probably have a lot of use left in them, but not for guests seeking high quality so don’t risk complaints by hanging on to them.

3.    Outdoor clean-up
Do a thorough clean of the exterior, removing spider webs, washing siding and outdoor furniture.  Clean up watercraft and outdoor toys.

4.    Change the décor

I like to change to a seasonal look after the summer, and swap out summer accents for a warmer and cozier look.  Bed linens are changed from light flowery duvet covers to deeper colors, and the dining area gets a rich fall look. 

5.    Window treatment
Back to cleaning again and get all windows and frames thoroughly cleaned.  Fall sunlight can really show up smears and fingerprints on glass so use a mix of dish soap and vinegar to get that sparkle back on your views.

6.    Check DVD & CD cases
A summer of use can leave movies and CDs all over the place and a quick check of a few cases will probably find some missing or misplaced.  This is a great task for the kids to get your DVD and CD collections back in order.

7.    Stage for festive marketing
When everything is sparkling clean and looking seasonal, stage up the dining table for a festive meal, and take some great photos.

8.    Update tourist information
Make a visit to your tourist information kiosk and pick up brochures and leaflets on seasonal events and activities.   Remove all the literature that focuses on the summer and replace with a bunch of stuff your guests can do at the time they are staying. 

9.    Check safety features
This is a good time to check batteries in smoke alarms and flashlights, replenish the first aid kit, ensure fire extinguishers are in date, and restock your power outage kit. 

10.    Review and revise listing
Take a look at your listing and consider updating photographs and text.  If you added anything new this summer or make some upgrades in response to guest feedback, you will need to revise your listing to reflect the changes.