By The Hospitable Team
Travelers who book accommodations on Vrbo and its alternatives instead of hotels do it because they prefer the coziness of renting an independently owned home. And they have high expectations about customer service.
That means that you, as a host, should be ready to go the extra mile to provide your guests with a great experience that can help you earn 5-star reviews and win more bookings. You must prepare your property for guests and ensure it is always well-stocked with the basic items and extras to make travelers happy they booked your home over another.
Stocking your vacation rental can be arduous, so we’ve created this comprehensive Vrbo checklist that you can rely on when setting up your home to host short-term guests.
Download our free short-term rental business guide for step-by-step instructions on building an efficient STR business.
Get Your Home Ready for Vrbo Hosting
Listing your property on Vrbo is easy, but turning your home into a short-term rental isn’t that simple. There are many things to do to ensure you and your property are ready for guests.
Make sure your home is safe
It’s your responsibility as a host to maintain a safe vacation rental. So you need to fix any loose steps or exposed wires and repair or replace the appliances that don’t work properly. Provide essential safety equipment such as carbon monoxide and smoke detectors, fire extinguishers, first aid kits, deadbolt locks, and outdoor lighting.
Furnish and decorate your Vrbo
Travelers choose to stay in vacation rentals instead of hotels because they want to feel at home even when they’re away. So you need to invest in comfortable and durable short-term rental furniture and add cozy, homey touches to your home’s interior design. Mirrors, vases, plants, throw pillows, soft blankets, artwork, and other design details can make your rental space incredibly inviting.
Hire professional cleaners
Short-term rental guests usually have high expectations regarding cleanliness, so hiring a cleaning service to give your home a deep clean makes sense. Keeping your rental space tidy between guest stays is also essential, which can be rather time-consuming.
That’s why delegating this responsibility to reliable professional cleaners who can respond even to short-notice requests is better. Provide your cleaners with a detailed Vrbo cleaning checklist. Then your only job will be to send reminders to your cleaning team, and if you opt for vacation rental software like Hospitable, you’ll be able to assign such tasks automatically.
You don’t need to rely on yourself to manage cleaners.
Create an attractive listing
List your vacation home on Vrbo. Create a catchy title for your listing to promote its best features, and write an accurate description to emphasize your unique selling points and top amenities. Use descriptive words and try to explain what kind of experience your guests will have when they stay at your property.
Take high-quality photos of each room and outdoor area and upload them to your Vrbo listing. Listings with beautiful photos typically get more views and bookings, so make sure your photos show what’s amazing in your home and can wow your guests from the start.
Get vacation rental insurance
Vrbo insurance offers property owners liability protection of $1,000,000, but they don’t protect hosts from accidental damages to their STR property. And a homeowner insurance policy has significant coverage gaps. So you may want to consider getting additional comprehensive vacation rental insurance to provide full coverage.
Equip your Vrbo with amenities
It’s your responsibility as a host to give your guests the best experience your short-term rental property offers and provide amenities that help guests have an enjoyable vacation. Travelers often filter their searches for properties by amenities, so make sure you equip your Vrbo with such top five amenities:
- Free parking
- Pet-friendly space
Automate your hosting routine
Many people start hosting on Airbnb and Vrbo, considering it a side hustle that can bring them extra income. Soon, they’re surprised to realize that managing their listings can feel like a full-time job. STR hosts have many daily responsibilities, including communicating with guests, managing bookings, check-ins, check-outs, organizing regular cleaning and maintenance, etc. Luckily, software tools like Hospitable can help you automate 90% of repetitive tasks, making your life easier.
All your STR business in one convenient window
Start today with a 14-day free trial.
Vrbo Inventory Checklist
Excited to welcome your first Vrbo guests to your vacation home? Pause to consider what they will need during their stay. Guests expect your Vrbo rental to be stocked with all the basics for a great stay. Use this Vrbo inventory checklist to ensure you’ve got it all.
- Bath towels (2 per guest)
- Hand towels (2 per guest)
- Toilet paper
- Liquid hand soap
- Mini travel toiletries
- Hair dryer
- Laundry detergent
- Trash bags
- Full-length mirror
- Bedside table with lamps
- Bed linen and pillows
- Extra blankets
- Plates (small and large)
- Wine glasses
- Forks, spoons, and knives
- Coffee cups
- Water glasses
- Pots and pans
- Tea kettle
- Tea and coffee
- Coffee pot/Coffee maker
- Cutting board
- Food storage containers
- Salt and pepper
- Cooking oil
- Dishwasher soap
- Paper towels
- Deck of cards
- Board games
What Else Can You Provide to Impress Your Guests?
We have provided you with an inventory checklist of basic amenities STR hosts should have for Vrbo guests. But other items can boost the guest experience and make them feel special. Here are some options you can provide, depending on the type of travelers.
For families with kids
Parents traveling with children will appreciate it if you take some burden off them so they don’t have to pack every piece of baby equipment on vacation. Make sure your Vrbo property has the following:
- Baby cutlery and plates
- Safety devices (baby gates, cabinet locks, outlet covers)
- Changing table
- Baby monitor
For travelers with pets
If you want to make your rental attractive to pet owners, include pet amenities that can help you stand out from the competition:
- Food and water bowls
- Extra poop bags
- Cage or pet bed
For business travelers
Business travelers prefer convenience and efficiency. So consider offering self-check-in, setting laptop-friendly workspace with an ergonomic chair and free, fast WiFi, and providing smartphone charges. Business travelers also always want to look their best, so they’ll appreciate laundry amenities:
- Washer and dryer
- Iron and ironing board
- High-quality hangers
- Clothes steamer
Hopefully, our Vrbo checklist can help you better understand what you must prepare to provide your guests with a positive travel experience. But remember that these ideas are just meant to give you a starting point for creating your vacation rental checklist.
Start with the basic items and amenities, and then think what the guests you want to target really need for an enjoyable stay to meet their expectations. And don’t forget to add some extras to transform your SRT property into an inviting and welcoming home and create a wow factor.
Creating a hosting account on Vrbo is completely free. But before you jump in, it’s important to understand the short-term rental regulations in your area and the Vrbo requirements you need to meet to create a listing. In this post, we will review Vrbo listing, photo, and host requirements.
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