Skip navigation

Join the Vacation Rentals Conversation!

Get answers to all of your questions from fellow owners and travelers.

Join the CommunityX

CommunitySeek, Ask, and Share in the Vacation Rentals Community

Christine's Vacation Rental Insights

2 Posts tagged with the guest_blogger tag
by Guest Blogger, Tom Kelly

My wife and I have reached a stage in life where we no longer collect kids, swim fins, rafts, fishing poles and race off to a lake in the mountains for summer vacations. Now, we seem to trail these young adults to the wonderful places where they now work or visit - and hope one year to get them all back to the lake.

What has been intriguing and surprising is the number of different languages that I’ve heard every day. It didn’t used to be that way. For example, we drove from Seattle to Jackson Hole, Wyoming two weeks ago to visit our youngest son who accepted a last-minute job at a dude ranch. On that trip, I heard more French in Jackson, more Japanese in Yellowstone and more French in McCall, Idaho than I would have ever imagined. Of course, when I mentioned my impressions of increased international visitors to our son he replied: “You and Mom just need to get out more.”

I thought about his response last weekend when we visited this popular wine country of California for the wedding of our daughter’s longtime friend. As I was gearing up my bike for a long ride through the valley’s vineyards, I overheard a young couple arguing in French about the exact location up the road in Yountville where actress Julia Roberts was conducting interviews for her new movie Eat Pray Love based on the novel by Elizabeth Gilbert.

The groom’s family had rented two private homes outside Napa. One of them was on a gorgeous estate that also hosted the wedding ceremony and reception. The day before the wedding, the owner dropped in during the preparations to see if there was anything he could do to assist. When I asked if international interest had risen, he said the number of foreign inquiries and bookings was clearly up from recent years.

“And not just here in Napa where you might expect more foreigners. We have a place in New Hampshire and European interest is up there, too.”

He said he and his wife often try to find something special from their country of origin, if possible, between bookings. Tiny bars of French soap, bottles German beer, even reference to a Belgian waffle maker have made a difference.

Why not try to make a small difference with all renters? If they know you care – and feel that they are more than a name in a ledger – they will tell their friends.


3, 2, 1... Vacation!Hi Everyone,

I’m officially ready for my vacation starting tomorrow. I cannot be more excited to have a week of R&R from both jobs—my work at HomeAway and my rental business. The vacation rental business can easily be a 24/7/365 job if you let it. But I insist on taking time off at least once a year. If I miss out on a booking, so be it, it’s worth my sanity.

Next week, I’ll have a guest blogger. My good friend and respected writer in the second home arena, Tom Kelly will be bringing his wisdom and wit to my blog.

Tom Kelly also has a Free Webinar on reverse mortgages tomorrow, August 10th. Here’s the info on it if you are interested:

Reverse mortgages have hit the mainstream. Whether you're a senior looking for a reverse mortgage or an adult child doing the research for mom and dad, the good news is that fees have plummeted. The puzzling news—not to be confused with “bad”—is that there could well be some costs in today’s advertised “no-cost reverse mortgages.”

In this compelling FREE WEBINAR, Tom Kelly, "The Real Estate Communicator," will help you understand the upfront costs, and those incurred down the road, and explain how persons over the age of 62 can use a reverse mortgage to buy a retirement home today, taking advantage of lower prices in many areas like Florida and Arizona.

This event is scheduled for August 10, 2010. Please join us at 2:00 PM EDT (1:00 PM CDT, 12:00 PM MDT, 11:00 AM PDT). Click here to register !

I’ll see you again in a couple of weeks when I’ll (hopefully) be relaxed and tan. Turks and Caicos here I come!