Did you know that 40% of second homes in the US are used as vacation rental properties?

If that’s not shocking enough, the number of second homes is about 9 million, according to US Census info. This means that almost 3.5 million vacation properties are up for grabs.

How can you tap into this market and stand out from the rest of the vacation rentals? Keep reading to find out!

Home Security

Even if you’re not going to live there or visit often between guests, you should have home security tools and advertise these on your listing. It’s a great bonus for your guests to have something like a wall safe for their documents.

Some other security features to have are:

  • A combination deadbolt
  • Wi-Fi locks
  • App-enabled garage door opener
  • Home monitors

There are a number of different security systems from security companies like ADT, but there are other options too. Being able to see if they’ve locked the door, talk to them, let them in on arrival, and more are huge bonuses that your guests will appreciate too.

Creature Comforts

There are certain things that people expect when you list your property as a vacation rental, like plates, glasses, coffee mugs, and silverware.

Having just one set of everything doesn’t cut it, though. Some things you should invest in and keep in good order are:

  • Cozy couch pillows and blankets
  • Plenty of sheets and towels
  • Basic toiletries
  • Kitchen cleaning kit

That’s right—toiletries, just like a hotel. It’s a nice touch to have kitchen supplies and toiletries to keep themselves and your kitchen spotless. After all, no one wans to use a sponge from the last stranger.

You should also have high-quality sheets and towels that don’t feel like sandpaper. Make it a point to replace them at least once a year, especially if your rental becomes a popular one.

Curb Appeal

While having nice curb appeal from the street doesn’t sound like a creature comfort, it will be eye-catching for your potential renters. You have to have it looking good inside and out.

Besides your renters, if the outside of your place is looking a little neglected, your neighbors won’t be happy. If there’s an HOA and you’re being neglectful, they might get on you about your renting business.


A curated Wi-Fi system is essential for your guests.

Change the default router password and username to something more secure than “admin” and “password” as is common on most of them. Also, keep track of the new password and username for the router in a safe place you can have at hand, in case a tenant does something weird.

Since a lot of guests are not only individuals, make sure the Wi-Fi has enough bandwidth to cover a family of four users. That way you also cover two couples.

About 40Mbps should be sufficient for lighter users, but up to 100Mbps will get you better reviews.

Vacation Rental Essentials

Now that you know what’s essential, you can list your vacation rental confidently. While some of these things don’t appear to be essential, it’s good to think about what’s in any 4- or 5-star hotel room—security, safes, connectivity, and plush comforts.

Want to know what else we have up our sleeves? Check out our other articles on lifestyle, fashion, and travel!

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