15 Replies Latest reply: Dec 17, 2019 10:21 AM by koko RSS

    What is best way to advertise and charge for additional bedroom

    donnajanebyrd New Member

      I have been renting my cabin as a 2 bedroom, sleeping up to 4 people.  It is actually a 3 bedroom but I have a door lock on the 3rd bedroom and have not included that in previous year. I did have several bookings last year with only 2 people staying.  I want to open that 3rd bedroom as an option  to  sleeping up to 6 people but do not want to increase my base rate to discourage possible bookings of 2-4 guests.  I would like to give people the option of which rooms to use.  Master with a King, guest with a Queen, guest with twin bunkbeds.  Does anyone have a listing like this that I could look at? or does anyone have a suggestion on how I should present this on the site?

        • Re: What is best way to advertise and charge for additional bedroom
          ha-moderator-meriah HomeAway Employee

          Hello, in this situation you could create another listing for 3 bedrooms/ 6 people. If you did not want to purchase another subscription, you can make this listing a pay per booking.

          • Re: What is best way to advertise and charge for additional bedroom
            bobbie32 Premier Contributor

            Because we have wanted to encourage honeymooners thru the 25 years we have been in business, we start our rates at two people and charge for each additional guest, up to the max allowed per our county at just 2 persons per bedroom including children of any age.  What does your community/jurisdiction allow?  I would go from there and charge per person beyond what you normally have done.  Be aware that more people can cause more damage and clean-up.  It is a wear and tear issue. We have liked having fewer people visit, so start our rates lower for 2 people just to encourage that.  It has worked beautifully! 

            • Re: What is best way to advertise and charge for additional bedroom
              ohst8er Premier Contributor

              donnajanebyrd, why not just have a 3 bedroom cabin and be done with it?   We have a 3 bedroom condo, and we charge ONE RATE, whether there are 2 people or 8 ppl.  Remember when the hotels used to have a single/double/triple/quad rate?  Do you know why most have eliminated that?  The reason is because people would lie.  Why would I want to tell you I have 4 (6, 8) people when you are going to charge me more for the extra people?  

                • Re: What is best way to advertise and charge for additional bedroom
                  hickmanhideaway Contributor

                  We have a 4 bedroom cabin, sleep 8, and charge our initial fee for 6 people, $10 per person per night for guest 7 and 8. We know that many bookings sneak in 1-2 people and this way we kind of turn a blind eye if they book foe 6 and bring 8. But we also get bookings sometimes for 2-4 guests because they like our location and amenities, so why charge them for 8 people?

                    • Re: What is best way to advertise and charge for additional bedroom
                      ohst8er Premier Contributor

                      For us it makes no logical sense to have a per person rate. My prime rate is my prime rate and if You’re coming during prime season you’re paying prime rate regardless of whether you bring two people or eight people.  Typically during prime season it is families so it’s usually the higher number of people.

                       

                      if you were coming during off-season you would pay off-season rates, which are significantly lower than prime season rates.  Off-season rates are the same whether you bring two people or eight people, but most are closer to the bottom number. 

                       

                      every location is different but this is what works for us.  I see no discernible difference in cost between two people and eight people. 

                        • Re: What is best way to advertise and charge for additional bedroom
                          bonesxxx Active Contributor

                          But your housekeeper does

                            • Re: What is best way to advertise and charge for additional bedroom
                              ohst8er Premier Contributor

                              bonesxxx, think about that statement for a minute.  My housekeeper is a professional, running her own company.  Her and her staff of housekeepers clean many many types of accommodations, from 1 bedroom, 1 bath condos to 5 bedroom homes.  From vacation rentals to private homes.

                               

                              It is her job, as a professional running her own company, to set her rates. She knows that sometimes when her and her staff walk into a VR (owning several herself), that the place will look as though no one has stayed there other than unmade beds, and sometimes she will enter and the place will be a disaster because no one picked up after themselves.   She knows this because this is her job.   So if she sets her rates too low, that's on her to manage, not me. She charges what she feels she needs to charge based on her CODB.  She passes that charge on to me, and I pass it on to my customers.  At some point she may feel she needs to raise her rates, will do so, and we will pass the charge onto our customers. 

                                • Re: What is best way to advertise and charge for additional bedroom
                                  bonesxxx Active Contributor

                                  That wasn't my point.  You said you didn't see any difference between two and eight people.

                                   

                                  I was merely pointing out that (obviously jokingly), as a sometimes housekeeper of my own property (since I live 35 miles from it), there is a yuuuge difference between a couple coming for a romantic weekend and three couples or a large family... just in sheets and towels alone.

                                   

                                  For some folks, the added guest fee is a better way to adjust for that.  Not all of us are in markets with a wide selection of professional cleaning companies (or any at all at my rural cabin).

                                   

                                  But I get it... my housekeeper is more or less the same.  Sometimes she comes in and just winks at the place and it's ready for the next guests, other times she has to roll up her sleeves hustle to get it all done before check-in.  It generally balances out.

                              • Re: What is best way to advertise and charge for additional bedroom
                                twomoreyears Senior Contributor

                                ohst8er - you are right, to each his own on the extra-person rates.  By the way, I HATE that HA/Vrbo treats them as fees and "surprises" people with them.  AirBnB includes them when they show the nightly rate if you have the right number of people in your search parameters.

                                 

                                Part of the reason I wanted to have three listings was so I could charge the same rate for two as for six in high season, but discount for smaller groups in the off-season.  We have costs for extra people - each bedroom has its own A/C unit and electricity is expensive in St Lucia.  We sometimes have to buy water (we're on rainwater catchment) and the water costs 10 cents/gallon.  More people = more wear and tear, and everything costs 2-3 times what it does in the States after we pay shipping and import duty - IF we can even get it there.  So I'm willing to "eat" the extra cost in high season, when I can get a pretty penny for our home.  But in low season, when margins are a lot lower, getting some extra helps.

                                 

                                There are no condos in our area, and every house is unique in size and amenities.  My neighbors are mixed on extra-person rates: some have a flat rate for up to eight, and others charge up to $100 per night for extra guests over their minimum. 

                                 

                                But I do agree there is a point where the extra-person "fee" just seems like you are being petty.  If you charge $1000 per night for two and add $5 for each extra person, that feels petty.  We charge $30 per person over two, and a typical nightly rate for two is $400-600, so the six-person rate is 20-30% more than the two-person rate.  At a difference of over $100 per night, I have a chance to compete with the smaller homes and hotels for just a couple (we're in a BIG honeymoon location near some very high-end hotels), without leaving a lot on the table if a larger group books.

                                 

                                I suspect one of the biggest reasons people do not charge extra-person fees is that they have to police it.  It's not at all uncommon for people to lie to get a lower rate, or add people later and forget to pay more.  So you have to be willing to monitor your guests and enforce the extra rate.  Since we have staff at our home (it's typical in our area for the larger homes), it's pretty easy for us to do that.  If we didn't have staff, I might rethink my position.

                                 

                                donnajanebyrd  - good luck in your decision on what to do!

                            • Re: What is best way to advertise and charge for additional bedroom
                              koko Active Contributor

                              I think it makes a big difference depending on your location and how the place is set up.

                              If you have a septic tank and well water and electric water heaters or gas on propane you find that every additional person costs you extra money.

                              Aside from the cleaning the likelihood of damage increases two or threefold with more people.

                              Having original art and Persian rugs in a rental make you think of these things - not every rental is a beach condo on water and sewage. I also believe that your cleaning costs when increased for same reason as mentioned can price you right out of the market if you do not watch it. People are slowly getting the idea that they are being asked to pay for a lot of things on top of the nightly rate and then the hotel might become attractive again...........