Real Estate

Keeping Your Vacation Rental Ready

Your vacation rental serves many purposes—it is an investment you want to protect, an income you want to maximize, and a property you want to enjoy during your own vacations. To meet all these needs and keep everything in the best shape possible take three simple steps between renters.


Some cleaning chores are universal to all rental situations: changing linens, emptying the refrigerator, dusting and general housekeeping. Other tasks are dictated by location. For instance, if you own one of the bald head island vacation rentals near the beach you will want to focus special attention on vacuuming furniture and mopping corners to get rid of all sand that has inevitably been tracked inside the house.


You or your management staff should conduct a walk-through of your rental as often as practical. Check smoke detectors, wipe down refrigerator coils, be sure window seals are tight. Make small repairs and take care of seasonal preventive maintenance. Pay special attention to safety concerns, some of which may be dictated by location. For a ski lodge near Lake Tahoe, you will need to hire a crew to keep ice off the sidewalk and prevent snow from piling up on the roof.


One key to keeping your rental booked is ensuring that prospective renters see positive reviews. Solicit feedback from each renter by asking just two questions: Would you stay here again? Would you recommend this unit to friends? If the answer to either question is negative, seek more information and consider making changes if they are warranted. If your renter gives positive responses send a link to review sites and ask them to leave you a brief recommendation. People are usually happy to share their opinion if you make it easy for them. Then turn your attention to the next renters. A few days prior to their arrival, send a welcome text or email. It will set an upbeat tone and make them feel welcome before their first step through the door.

Real Estate

How to Evaluate Your Local Real Estate Market

The real estate market continues to be strong across most parts of the United States. Because of this, you may find yourself in the position of either buying or selling a home. When considering entering into either side of any Suffolk real estate transaction, it is helpful to have a clear understanding of the current market trends. There are multiple ways to collect information to help you evaluate your local real estate market.

Research Current Listings and Recent Sales

It is fairly easy to find current listing and sales information on the internet. You do not need to have a Real Estate license to access this information. Consumer friendly sites like Zillow and Trulia keep data on current home listings and recent sales. There are a multitude of sites that make it easy to search for this public information.

You should be able to identify if there are more or less listings than average, which will give you an idea of housing supply. Then, look at the average days on market. When homes are selling quickly, it’s an indication of a hot market.

Consider the Local Business Environment

When evaluating your real estate market, you will want to consider the local business environment. Do you see any large companies moving in or out of your area? Are local businesses thriving or are there many commercial locations vacant and for lease?

Consult Local Brokers

While many realtors will always paint a rosy picture of any real estate market, if you call several brokers and pose the right questions, you are likely to get some helpful information. Have your list of questions prepared before you make any calls. Record the answers you receive and see if you spot any recurring themes in responses.

Taking a close look at your local market will help you position yourself well in a transaction whether you are buying or selling.