Well - I have reviewed the guest. To me, It makes sense that if I review them, it might remind them or encourage them to submit a review. I know that is against the recommendation of others here but it doesn't change what makes sense to me.
Why would it make sense to not allow the guest to edit their recent review? What does VRBO / HomeAway fear would happen that would be negative if they allowed it?
Correct me if I'm wrong but I believe we can edit what we write here on this forum and I'm sure most people here would feel more comfortable knowing that they could edit what they wrote if they later notice a mistake that needs correcting?
OK, I read the correct answer and of course I printed it out for future reference. I might conclude that VRBO / HomeAway is afraid that the guest and the owner might try try to blackmail each other into performing actions that they might not naturally take. Or that the two of them might be inclined to create a side deal off-line to gain some advantage?
Am I missing the point? Or am I basically correct?
So what about some "best practices" advise for me? Can I create a template to replace the generic one HomeAway sends out to the guest with one of my own? If so what careful wording should I use to emphasize the importance of the "Star" ranking to the owner -- since the majority of our guests have no knowledge at all that these reviews are a major scoring factor used by HomeAway to rank us owners?
BTW I edited this reply to correct a minor spelling error --
You mentioned that "reviews are supposed to be honest". But now I would assume that it is believed that both parties will become dishonest if they are allowed to edit their reviews. That makes good sense -- if you revise your perspective to read "since both owners and guests are basically dishonest" -- then it makes better sense to not allow them to edit what they wrote.
So I would now assume that HomeAway also basically sees us as dishonest too! I get that -- that kind of falls into the general overall perspective that I see every day on this forum. We don't always trust HomeAway for a lot of reasons and they don't trust us for a lot of reasons.
I get it -- I think that is the way it is.
HomeAway will not edit, nor allow edits to reviews. We have a two-way blind review system as feibus mentioned. If the traveler made a mistake in the review their only option would be to reach out to Customer Support and request the review be removed. They will not have an opportunity to resubmit a corrected review. Thank you.
HomeAway Community Manager
my really inexperienced perspective and suggestion to the author of this thread
1. given that as it is reasonable HA/VRBO utilizes a double-blind review system to avoid/minimize retaliations or trade-offs, as it is a general practice by the way
2. i suggest you ask the traveler to send you an email, perhaps on the HA/VRBO platform, stating precisely what they told you and how on second thoughts they would have liked to write the review - you may then post the text of that email as a comment i believe it is called, by going to Edit Property, Reviews on the lateral tabs on the HA Owners Dashboard - it will appear without stars,therefore no rating, but the prospective guest will see both the original review and the comment and integrate the two.
I will start out by saying I appreciate you taking the time to respond --
However, I'm just not interested in a rather complicated workaround -- there are just too many workarounds we already have to go through.
And I think the average guest just wants a simple process to make a review that doesn't require complicated workarounds. I don't think most guests even look at the review they wrote on HomeAway's Website after they write it up.
I'm really more interested in finding out if I can use a custom written template to request a review and that allows me to guide the inexperience guest through the review process.
Actually I can live with the results easily -- I suppose that by posting it here one would assume that the guest made some grave error. Actually he simply submitted a very complimentary 4 star review. I have received 29 reviews thus far -- all have been 5 star. So I asked the guest if their was something we could improve since we received a 4 star review. They responded that they assumed that their review included a broader range than just our condo -- They thought a 5 star review would apply to the Presidential Suite at The 4 Seasons. Remember no one provides any guidelines to go by. They apologized and said they would change it to a 5 star but they didn't know how.
Hence my question. We joked around about it -- And I eventuality just told them to give me a 6 star review next time to make up for it!
This world of condo rentals is just some strange game played without rules -- sort of like the movie -- "Maze Runner". At least that is how it seams to me.
In my real world life -- I cannot live without editing and improving EVERYTHING I do. Whether it is instructions to repair something. Tax Preparations, Accounting. Creating complicated spreadsheets. Plans in general. Even - how to pull off a good vacation. I write up a plan and constantly improve it as time goes by. So it is natural for me to assume that I can edit something I wrote when I need to.
Since no one addressed whether I could create my own template to ask the guest for a review -- the answer to that question remains unknown to me.
You can find the answer to this and many other questions by logging in, clicking the little squares icon in the top left corner of your listing, click "support" and then scroll down to see if your question is answered there, OR you can do a search.
And yes, agreed, there probably SHOULD be some sort of explanation to travelers as to what the star scale means, however, I would imagine that VRBO does not want to lead a guest into their review, so I can definitely see both sides.
We've all been on the receiving end of that "perfect" 4 star review. Your future guests aren't going to make their decision on the stars that your previous guests gave you (unless of course you have alot of low reviews), they are going to make their decision on the comments. Even a 1 star review can be viewed as an "opportunity," by showing your future guests how well you handle issues as they come up.
I try not to sweat the little things. We have about 5 4-star reviews. It's not affected our bookings in the least.
Go to your listing's email templates, the review template is right there near the bottom of the list.
As for worrying about a 4-star review, don't. There's a reason VRBO's metrics include both 5- and 4-star reviews... for many travelers, there's not a big difference, so they could them the same, except for the average score. But anything over 4.6 is still great.
I found "E-mail templates" under Property | Rules & Policies | E-mail Templates
Edit inserted; I just have to keep you guys entertained --
If you bother to think about it ---
Why does it make any sense to put "E-mail Templates" under "Rules and Policies"? It just looks to me like they needed to stick it somewhere and just found a hole there?
Maybe HomeAway isn't allowed to edit their own work --- If that were true --- That would explain a whole lot of things I see on this website!
I wrote up a custom Template for reviews and tested it to see if it showed up when I request a review. Yea, it's there.
I didn't make sure it was perfect -- I'm absolutely SURE HomeAway will let me EDIT it if I need to ------.
"As for worrying about a 4-star review, don't" I've learned that it does pay to worry about anything concerning the Policies and Procedures around here.
Earlier above -- I mentioned I was joking with our guest about the whole thing.
Several months earlier I was causally asking why my listing within our condo complex was shown (default) as 71 out of 76 listings? No one knew the answer.
Then in Nov this year, I was ask to become a Premier Partner. I accepted (after a little study). Ever since my listing is #1 out of 76. How come? I'll bet nobody knows.
So has anything else changed? No nothing else changed. I'm not getting more bookings or any other perk that I can tell. I don't see that it makes any difference at all -- maybe someone can tell me about the big advantages I should be seeing? BTW I'm still #1 out of 76 with a 4 star review since either HomeAway rounds off all the numbers they use to rate us or it just doesn't really matter
I had a guest put our condo # in the review. So I called CS and was told it will be deleted because (a rule I agree with) by providing my property address and my condo # combined with the calendar leaves me vulnerable. It is a nice 5 star review, why can't (1) it be edited to remove JUST THE CONDO # or (2) "rejected" with a note to the guest to please resubmit without the condo #. I was told once deleted the guest cannot submit a new one. I have not responded to the review or rated them, I am now cheated out of a nice 5 star review. Do I at least get credit for it for my PP status????