I am curious if this has been a known issue for a while?
I am new to this forum and have been managing my own properties for about 2 years. Recently I started managing for some smaller cabins in the Smokys for other people who just dont have the time or patience to do their own. I am doing it the right way licensed, purchased software that integrates and the whole 9. I am finding the market seems so saturated with 1-3 bedroom cabins that getting exposure is extremely difficult during the shoulder/off seasons. The VRBO/HA sort focuses on homes with a history and get the most views and highest likelihood of resulting in booking. At least that is what they have told me. Who knows how that algorithm actually works. However, it is their business so I can't exactly complain about that. Where I do find an issue is with the price sorting which many guest will use to make a decision. There are many owners and PM's that are manipulating this search and adding in a "additional guest" fee or some type of other management junk fee. This is not being factored into the nightly rate sort that is clouding the rate the guest is actually getting. Where one was listed for 90/night, and then a 30/night additional guest fee was tacked on making it 120/night. So although my cabin is priced better, it shows up further down the search results. In other cases, the total nightly is $265 for 3 nights. However there is an "admin fee" that is 60% of the nightly rate. all of this is in addition to the cleaning fee. While I understand that every business operates differently, and the need for the added guest fee, admin fee, and anything else a PM needs to charge... I also I feel like HA owes it to the guest to give them a transparent booking experience when they are using the filter sorts. In addition, they owe it to the owners to give us an even playing field on the customer sorting options.
I have gone onto other channels and they seem to have a more transparent amount listed for the guest. I am thinking that if this has been going on for a while, that HA has no intention of fixing it and I may need to look at other channel options. Just wanted to get some thoughts from the group.
Thanks and I hope everyone is having a Merry Christmas today!