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4785 Views 20 Replies Latest reply: Jun 3, 2013 4:11 PM by murdockvacationrentals RSS
Contributor 40 posts since
May 5, 2012
Currently Being Moderated

Jun 1, 2012 9:09 PM

Running a Rental WITHOUT a Computer?

Do any of you manage your rental (websites, ads, emails, inquiries, contracts, etc.) WITHOUT a computer (desktop or laptop)?  As in using a smartphone, tablet, ipad, etc etc..?  Looking for relevant feedback on the topic.  Thanks

 

 

 

Cheers,

 

Andrea Fahy

------------------

http://www.vrbo.com/414863

www.newbernroundhouse.com

http://www.facebook.com/newbernroundhouse

  • susaninrehoboth Active Contributor 893 posts since
    Sep 3, 2011
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 2, 2012 3:58 AM (in response to newbernroundhouse)
    Re: Running a Rental WITHOUT a Computer?

    Did your computer break? I don't know how anyone could set up original  listing(s) without a computer. For me, using a smart phone to reply to inquiries is just about impossible. Using an Ipad is not much better.

     

    Then there is the record keeping. I have just one rental property and I'm retired and still can't imagine tracking rentals, expenses & necessary IRS info without a computer.

    • sodamo Contributor 260 posts since
      Nov 5, 2011
      Currently Being Moderated
      Jun 2, 2012 7:39 PM (in response to newbernroundhouse)
      Re: Running a Rental WITHOUT a Computer?

      For what it's worth here are my thoughts.

      Basically I use, safari browser, email, Numbers, and Pages. Mostly I used my MacBook pro but like using my iPhone and iPad. I'm hoping that someday soon, the transition between Number and Pages on the MacOS and iOS via iCloud become more seamless, and don't have to worry about the translations between formats. So, I would say I could basically manage in the manner you are suggesting. Unfortunately, there are some website incompatibilities, HA/VRBO and my state tax site. Last I tried cannot edit this forum from iPad. Can't post pics to the listings either. Hopefully these get fixed.  There is a VR app, but I haven't used it yet, I'm waiting for it to share data between iPhone and iPad via iCloud. No problems with either PayPal or Square for credit cards using either.

      So, bottomland, I'd say basically doable, but might need real computer access for specific functions.

       

      I find myself doing less and less on my laptop and look forward to when I don't need it.

       

      David

      Sent from my iPad (3rd Gen) with Aloha

      Please visit vacation.ninolehawaii.com

  • margaret Contributor 298 posts since
    Apr 27, 2011
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 3, 2012 4:18 PM (in response to newbernroundhouse)
    Re: Running a Rental WITHOUT a Computer?

    If your are comforable with your smart phone you should be fine for the short term. I use my phone when I travel for a week or less to manage my rentals and have had no problems so far. Access to a computer is not usually a problem if the need should arise but for the most part I find the phone works for me. Just be sure to have everything that you can done before your leave then handling inquiries should be easy.

  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 4, 2012 4:07 PM (in response to newbernroundhouse)
    Re: Running a Rental WITHOUT a Computer?

    I have been able to do it with little to no real difficulties.  Starting last December, when I have been traveling, I stopped packing my laptop and now only travel with my Asus Transformer tablet (android) and my HTC Sensation smartphone (also android).  When at home, I more frequenlty just use my Mac desktop or laptop.  I have had no problems accessing HomeAway or Vrbo to respond to inquiries or my credit card processor for requesting payments.  I have uploaded all of my documents I use to send to my guests in DropBox so I can access from anywhere.  If you plan ahead and set yourself up to access the things you need while away from home, you can definitely do it!

  • sapphiresteve Active Contributor 506 posts since
    Dec 16, 2010
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 4, 2012 5:58 PM (in response to newbernroundhouse)
    Re: Running a Rental WITHOUT a Computer?

    By any definition, all the devices mentioned are computers. Some computers have more capability than others. A 2012 "smart phone" probably has about ten thousand times more computational ability than existed on our planet fifty years ago!

  • New Member 1 posts since
    Jun 5, 2012
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 5, 2012 9:46 AM (in response to newbernroundhouse)
    Re: Running a Rental WITHOUT a Computer?

    I am jealous of your travelling adventure!!!  Have a great time and you will do just fine managing your rentals from your phone.  I do it all the time1

  • jeffbailey Contributor 102 posts since
    Jun 3, 2011
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 8, 2012 8:26 AM (in response to newbernroundhouse)
    Re: Running a Rental WITHOUT a Computer?

    The HomeAway iPhone/iPad app actually has an owner login which gives you some of the features of ReservationManager.  However, last I checked it only works if you list of HomeAway (not VRBO), so I wasn't able to check it out. 

     

    I also have an iPhone/iPad app called Vacation Props that allows you to quickly respond to inquiries using from HomeAway/VRBO/FlipKey/VacationRentals.com using customized email templates.  It keeps track of your reservations, inquiries, and other property information.

     

    Jeff Bailey

    Creator of Vacation Props, an innovative iPhone/iPad app to manage vacation properties and quickly respond to inquiries

    http://www.fourthframe.com/FourthFrame_Technologies/VacationProps.html

    http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/vacation-props/id452612798?mt=8

      • jeffbailey Contributor 102 posts since
        Jun 3, 2011
        Currently Being Moderated
        Jun 8, 2012 8:51 AM (in response to newbernroundhouse)
        Re: Running a Rental WITHOUT a Computer?

        Yes, the app only for iPhone/iPad and it runs fine on an iPad 1.  Personally, I think you'd be much better off with an iPad than an andrioid tablet if you plan to rely on it for your rental properties.  The android tablet market is pretty fragmented and the ecosystem of third party apps is much stronger for the iPad.  However, I'd be a little hesitant to get an iPad 1 at this point since at some point in the future Apple will likely not support it with newer versions of iOS.  iOS 6 will likely come out this year and its possible they may announce its only for iPad 2 and beyond.  If I had to guess I would say iOS 6 will be supported on the iPad 1, but it will be the last major release.

         

        Jeff Bailey

        Creator of Vacation Props, an innovative iPhone/iPad app to manage vacation properties and quickly respond to inquiries

        http://www.fourthframe.com/FourthFrame_Technologies/VacationProps.html

        http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/vacation-props/id452612798?mt=8

  • murdockvacationrentals Contributor 41 posts since
    Jan 28, 2011
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 3, 2013 4:08 PM (in response to newbernroundhouse)
    Re: Running a Rental WITHOUT a Computer?

    In my opinion, it is most effective to have access to a computer in order to provide prospective guests with a thorough response to their inquiry, including a break-down of the pricing.

     

    An advantage of doing everything on a mobile device is that you could respond very quickly, if desired. A downside is that the responses may be a little more limited in scope and content.

     

    However, IF I was to go completely mobile I would convert all of my email templates into the notes app so I could simply copy/paste them into the response. I would convert all of the attachments I normally send (floorplans, terms and conditions, maps, etc.) into URL links that could be included in the response as well. The last component for the inquiry response would be the pricing breakdown and you would have to figure out the easiest way to put that in.

     

    When it comes to completing a reservation though and all that goes with that, I guess it could all be done on a tablet, but it seems like it wouldn't be as time efficient as getting it done on a computer.

     

    I like the idea of hiring someone part-time or full-time to help respond to inquiries, process reservations, send cleaning reminders to cleaners and send thank you cards to guests after booking and staying, thereby freeing up more time for owners/managers to focus in on other tasks needing attention.

     

    Good luck in your travels and adventures!

     

    Munro Murdock
    RA, MBA, Ko Olina Resident
    Hawaii Life Real Estate Brokers

    www.HawaiiLife.com  |  Munro@HawaiiLife.com

    View our Ko Olina vacation rental HERE


    ​"Another day in the life...the Hawaii Life!"​

     

    :::

     

    Quick UPDATE added June 3, 2013:


    The iPad and other tablet devices make it quite easy to transact business remotely without a computer. The various apps available are quite impressive and rival many full computer-based programs. I still think I'm most 'productive' and efficient though when working from my laptop. However, if you find yourself on the move a lot and still want to be able to be responsive to guests, owners and service providers, investing in web-enabled mobile devices is very beneficial.

     

    And for those who struggle with adopting and adapting to new technologies, the sooner you can embrace it and open up your mind to the possibility of learning new things...the better off you will be in the long run. Trust me. Technology innovation is not going away. It is the way of the future for all business transactions. Take classes, watch online tutorial videos, get friends and family to teach you the tips and tricks for using these devices. Yes, it can be very overwhelming when you are not used to it, but 15-30 minutes a day invested in learning how to use technology will benefit you immensely in the years to come!

     

    Message was edited by: Munro Murdock

      • murdockvacationrentals Contributor 41 posts since
        Jan 28, 2011
        Currently Being Moderated
        Jun 3, 2013 4:11 PM (in response to newbernroundhouse)
        Re: Running a Rental WITHOUT a Computer?

        Andrea,

         

        I hope things are going well. Just revisiting this post to see how it's working out for you. Some other programs I've been using a lot for storing and sharing information are Evernote and Dropbox. Dropbox is similar to Google Docs (now Google Drive). Evernote is a convenient way to store just about anything, from receipts to recipes to notes to web content or any other reference material.

         

        Munro Murdock
        RA, MBA, Ko Olina Resident
        Hawaii Life Real Estate Brokers

        www.HawaiiLife.com  |  Munro@HawaiiLife.com

        View our Ko Olina vacation rental HERE


        ​"Another day in the life...the Hawaii Life!"​

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