Property Management for Vacation Homes and Condos Property Management for Unfurnished Long Term Homes and Condos.
Furnished Vacation Rental Property Management
We specialize in furnished vacation rental property management in Amelia Island. Services offered: Advertising, lease completion and securing of rental, freshen up of home/condo prior to tenant’s arrival, departure cleaning, tax remittance and annual profit/loss statement.
We have a streamlined check in process for the guests’ convenience, they check in directly at the unit. Our units have high end linens and towels, have an amazing cleaning staff and a convenient on-line booking process. Our methods have proven successful and the attention to detail in our office and cleaning staff brings people back time after time. Our goal is repeat business.
As an owner, you can rest assured that we will treat your property like it’s our own. Maintenance issues will not only be addressed, they’ll be done in a timely and cost-efficient manner. Again, we will give you service beyond compare. To that end, we have top-notch, trustworthy cleaning and maintenance staff and companies that handle all of our condos and houses. Crumbs on the seats, sand on the floor and doors left unlocked are not acceptable! If there’s a problem, we are there to fix it. If it’s a big problem, we have third party relationships with HVAC companies, plumbers, electricians and an appliance firms.
Long Term Unfurnished Property Management & Tenant Placement Services
Management includes: – advertising, credit and/or background checks, lease completion and walk through inspections. Once the tenant has been approved we hold the security deposit in a non-interest bearing account and oversee all matters that may arise during the tenancy to include plumbing, electrical, HVAC, painting, carpentry, carpet cleaning, locksmith services etc. We provide 24 hour a day 7 days a week service for tenant emergencies.
Tenant Placement includes- advertising, credit and/or background checks, lease completion and walk through inspections. Once the tenant has been approved we turn over the lease paperwork, security deposits and any pet fees to the owner. We will return at the end of the tenancy to perform a final walk through inspection.
Homeowner/ Condo Owner FAQs
Mock’s Amelia Vacations makes renting out your property easy – but we understand that homeowners have lots of questions. We try to be as clear and informative as possible, so we’ve put together a list of the most asked questions we get! Please don’t hesitate to discuss directly with Jonathan to find out more.
What does Mock’s Amelia Vacations do for Vacation Rental Owners?
We manage every aspect of keeping your vacation rental booked and ready for guests and owners to enjoy. Our goal is to enable you to make the most revenue from your rental without having to do any of the busy work involved with managing it. That means we do everything from taking photos, writing descriptions, and marketing it to potential guests as well as managing logistics like reservations, payments, check-in and check- out, housekeeping, light upkeep, and dispatching emergency maintenance. We can also manage handymen for regular maintenance, improvements, and emergencies. We make sure homeowners can sleep well at night knowing their rental is being taken care of and generating the most revenue possible.
How easy is it to get started?
Getting started is easy. We can activate homes that are existing vacation rentals as quickly as in a few weeks if everything is ready to go. Our contract has no minimum term or volume commitments. Normal activation includes shooting new photos, adding keyless lock system, putting together detailed listings, setting pricing, activating advertising on the main internet channels and beginning to take reservations – all in as little as a few weeks! This can take longer given a homeowner’s schedule, or if a home is in the process of being converted from a residence or long-term rental. If you do not like the service at any point you can terminate without penalty.
What kind of contract do I need to sign?
Our contract is straight-forward, and we believe it should not have any onerous clauses. After the first year, it includes a 90 day out clause for any reason – if you are not happy with the service you can leave with a three months’ notice. Please contact us and we will be happy to send you our agreement for your review.
Do I have to commit to a certain amount of availability?
No, however we do require that all homes that wish to use Mock’s Amelia Vacations are year-round rentals. There is no problem with an owner, friends or family using a rental for days or even weeks at a time, however if you plan to only make it available occasionally then your home probably is not a good fit. We also reserve the right to cancel a homeowner agreement if the home is predominantly unavailable for bookings.
Is there anything I am required to have at my home?
Yes, there is! Guests expect a fully functioning home when they arrive complete with furniture, appliances, cookware, glasses, silverware, internet, TV, etc. as well as a standard supply of bed linens, bath and hand towels and typical consumables like lightbulbs and batteries. We will work with you to make sure that you have everything in place. High-speed wireless internet is required at every home – and many of our homes use SmartTVs equipped with Netflix, Hulu+, and others and cut the cord for cable. We do this in most of the properties we own. Nicely decorated coastal-style homes tend to command higher rentals and we always encourage owners to have a home that shows well. A good test of whether or not you need to have something in your rental is to put yourself in a guest’s shoes… If you were staying somewhere for a weeklong period of time, what would you expect to have in that rental home… that is what we aim to provide to guests for their stay.
How do you set pricing for my rental?
Owners often ask how pricing is set for each rental, and why the “Total Rent” amount on booking notification emails sometimes looks a little strange. First, we set an initial price for each unit for each day of week, and time of the year. Midweek days might get set at one price, weekends at another, holidays and peak periods may be set higher, and off-season prices could be set lower. We set these initial prices based on several factors like input from each owner, characteristics of the home (size, amenities, location, recent remodels, etc.), analytics from specialized data sources (e.g. Airdna.com), and comparable home prices in the area and our own portfolio of units. Our experience has led us to slice up pricing into at least 6 different seasons since the ‘seasonality’ and ‘holiday’ impact is so profound in this area.
Once we agree on the initial prices with you the owner, we recommend that owners allow us to dynamically adjust pricing up or down to optimize overall revenue. This is a complex task and we have exclusive rights to data and analytics to drive our pricing decisions. We combine insights from the data with our local market expertise to make weekly adjustments. The key is to monitor and adjust pricing up or down based on actual market demand. This is where Mock’s Amelia Vacations excels – we monitor conversion rates of your rental at initial pricing and adjust up or down according to how well the rental is booking. It is an ongoing process that is always a top priority. The more money our owners make, the more we make – so we try and do everything we can to maximize the revenue.
Here are just a few examples of the many ways we adjust your pricing to make you more rental income:
- If your home is booking more quickly for comparable times of year than other homes in your area – this may be an indicator we set your price too low, and we may adjust the price up.
- If your unit has last minute availability, and has openings within the next two weeks, we may apply different levels of discounts to try and get that last-minute traveler who is used to getting a last-minute discount deal.
- If we notice large periods of time that are farther in advance that have lower than expected occupancy, we may adjust the price down. As occupancy fills in, we may adjust the price back up.
There are several other ways we make changes, and a lot of different places we look for data. At Mock’s Amelia Vacations, we monitor the market availability calendars on sites like VRBO and HomeAway and benchmark every home’s inquiry and reservation volumes against historical numbers and comparable homes. All of these changes can result in the “Total Rent” number being different than the initial pricing set for your rental.
How do you advertise my rental, and do I need to pay for this?
We list your home everywhere we think guests are looking for rentals! We start by putting you on the Mock’s Amelia Vacations website, but we know that most consumers shop on the big consumer travel sites. In addition to our own site, we automatically get your property onto Airbnb.com, where we are the most positively reviewed host in the area. Instantly you become part of a well-known and respected group of Mock’s Amelia Vacations properties, at no cost. Then we also do the major HomeAway sites (Homeaway.com, VRBO, and Vacationrentals.com to name a few), and we list your property on roughly 14 other optional sites like Tripadvisor, Flipkey, and Booking.com. We also synchronize your availability calendar, so every site shows the right rates and availability all of the time. We believe no other property manager markets more than Mock’s Amelia Vacations – after all if we do not book up your home, we do not make any money on it either! Each site has a slightly different business model, but in general most have a combination of a small commission that reduces the net rent and a fee that gets charged to the guest. Of course, all bookings on the Mock’s Amelia Vacations website have no additional cost associated with them.
What if I already have listed my home on those sites?
Many owners have already created listings. We will work with you to migrate them over to our managed account and we will go through them to professional rewrite the listing if necessary, to add or improve the photos and to configure the listing to synchronize the pricing and calendar across all of the many sites we plan on listing your rental.
How do guests pay you?
We use credit card processing through one of the industry leaders. Travelers overwhelmingly prefer to pay with credit cards for transactions rather than send cash – it is safer, easier, and more secure. We can also take cash or check payments as well as eCheck/ACH but prefer to use credit cards. Credit card companies do charge for their service, we deduct a typical fee of 2.5% for Visa/Mastercard from the gross rent to cover their fees.
Can guests book my property online?
Yes, they can, and more and more guests do.
How do you enable online bookings?
We use Streamline Software for Professionals – a very secure and reliable management solution for professional managers. It is backed by a publicly traded company in Austin and works very well for enabling all aspects of bookings and payments.
How do you deal with advanced deposits?
We accept all major credit cards, and charge a deposit of 50% of the total rental upon booking, with the full payment due 30 days prior to check-in. All reservations which are made more than 10 days in advance of check-in are fully refundable if the guest cancels the reservation within 72 hours after the time of booking. After this cancellation period expires, all payments are non-refundable.
When do I get paid for reservations?
We currently pay owners once a month. Expect to receive an owner statement and an ACH deposit to your bank account within about fifteen days after the end each month. This statement and deposit will cover all guests that check-in during that month. If you have a guest crossing over one month to the next, the payment for that reservation falls in the month they check-in.
Why do you do commission-based pricing?
Commission-based pricing is the industry-standard for vacation rental property management firms. That does not necessarily mean it is the only answer – but we believe that it perfectly aligns our incentives with our homeowners. We only make money when our owners make money, and the only way to increase our revenue is to help owners increase theirs. We believe this is why the commission model has worked and is so well established in the industry.
What kind of reporting do I get on my unit?
Initially you will get a monthly statement from us that details out how much rental revenue you earned, includes details on how much tax we collected and will pay on your behalf, as well as any charges that you have incurred during the month (for example if you want it cleaned for your own stay, or if you had us install a new TV, etc.)
Do I have to handle paying any lodging taxes?
No, Mock’s Amelia Vacations handles that for you. We collect the taxes, put them into our owner escrow-style account, and remit on your behalf. Each reservation has taxes added to the amount of the rental – so when you see a rental dollar amount, you can rest assured that we have collected and will remit tax on top of that – you do not need to send us extra money to pay taxes nor do you need to file with your lodging authority.
What about cleaning fees?
Guests pay us directly for cleaning fees, and we pay the cleaners. There is nothing you need to do to schedule them or pay for them. If you wish to have your home cleaned while you, a family member, or friend are using it, just let us know and we will clean it and bill you for it as part of your monthly statement.
Do I need to do my own laundry?
No, our cleaning fees cover laundry service for linens with every clean.
Do I need to provide all the amenities every time a guest stays, like soap, paper towels, toilet paper?
No, you don’t need to worry about it, Mock’s Amelia Vacations makes sure homes remained stocked. We require our vacation rental homes come with a starter packet, an initial set of amenities, so when guests arrive, they don’t need to head straight to the store. That set includes a couple rolls of toilet paper per bathroom, a roll of paper towels, soap, shampoo, cascade pods, tide pods, garbage bags, and dryer sheets. Mock’s Amelia Vacations buys these amenities in bulk and restocks these for every stay. Rather than have an owner manage and maintain.
What if I want to do some decorating on my own?
We love it when owners stay involved with decorating and improving their home. Just make sure to check that the home is not booked, and you can easily access it whenever you want!
What happens if there is an emergency? Who does the guest call?
The guest always calls or texts Mock’s Amelia Vacations. The guest actually never knows the name of the owner for privacy reasons (unless you really want us to tell them). We take the call and dispatch the appropriate handyman, cleaning person or guest relations team member. We pay the handyman and then put the bill onto your homeowner statement taking out of the revenue owed to you during the month – that way you don’t have to worry about paying out-of-pocket for anything unless it happens to be a major repair. Mock’s Amelia Vacations does not charge any additional fees for these types of emergency jobs.
How do you deal with noisy guests?
We generally require renters to be at least 25 years old, and we have a strict policy of evicting them upon any sign of noise, partying, or over-occupancy. We are owners first as well and the key to our success or failure lies with happy neighbors (including other tenants in the same property). All neighbors will have our contact information and get in contact with us at the slightest concern. This relationship is incredibly important. Parties do happen and we want people to enjoy themselves, however we do not tolerate abuse at the properties and contractually have heavy measures in place to evict and charge additional fees. If we receive more than one noise complaint about a guest, we will send over our team and evict the guest from the property for the remainder of the stay.
Do owners have to allow pets?
No, that is up to each individual owner and the condo association rules. In general, we encourage it as homes simply get more demand if they allow pets, but we understand many owners do not want to allow them and that is fine. We do charge guests an additional non-refundable $100 rent per stay ($200 for 3+ bedroom homes) for pets to ensure that an owner’s home is fully cleaned, and any damage caused by the pet gets billed to the guest. This fee gets paid as additional rent, so the majority will go to the owner.
What about regular maintenance?
We have built a strong cadre of maintenance/handyman resources that we regularly use. We handle a 24/7 point of contact system, reservations management, guest support, regular housekeeping scheduling and inspections, dispatch of qualified maintenance personnel, monitor internet up-time, indoor temperature when equipped, pool temps when equipped, maintain electronic locks, etc. During inspections we will restock consumable items like soap, toilet paper, shampoo, and even perform simple maintenance like changing remote control batteries or light bulbs for lamp fixtures or ceilings 8’ or lower in height if spares are available on site.
Who takes care of my patio and/or outdoor areas?
We are happy to schedule a regular landscaping service, but most owners already have this in place and continue to use who they trust. We recommend that all owners have repeat services in place, if they are not already provided by your condo association. Owners typically pay these fees direct to their contractors along with utilities, internet and TV. If you would like us to set up recurring services for you, no problem, but we do only set them up to happen on a regular basis. We can send the bill to you or pay the vendor and charge your owner account.
Are there any other regular services I should have scheduled?
In addition to repeat landscaping service, Mock’s Amelia Vacations recommends having a local, licensed HVAC service plan in place that regularly services your air conditioning and heating appliances as well as changes your air filters. Plans run anywhere from $15/month on up depending on how often you need your filters changed and how large your home is. We also require a regular pest-control service, gutter cleaning in heavy leaf areas, and at least twice-yearly window washing. If you would like us to set these up for you, no problem. The bills for the service are set up in your name and are sent directly to you.
I’m uncomfortable giving out keys to strangers – how do you keep my home safe?
Mock’s Amelia Vacations uses a very specific type of digitally-coded lock specifically designed for lodging that is known to be the gold standard in the vacation rental industry. They are expensive – but they are worth it. They are proven to be reliable, secure and stand-up to harsh outdoor environments. They are very secure with all codes expiring upon check-out. Even cleaners and handymen can be issued one-time or date and time-specific codes. What this means, is that your home is secure, and easy for the right people to access at the right time. Unlike many other managers, we do not cut corners by using cheaper, less reliable and less secure locks, and we never hand out keys to anyone.
How do I get into my home?
Each lock comes with the ability to have several master codes set for it at any given time. As an owner, you have a master code and can access the property whenever you want. If for some reason, you wish to access while a renter is in the property, please check with us first. Generally, we like to avoid disturbing the tenants, but understand there may be times when this needs to be done.
How do you handle security deposits and damage?
Research at HomeAway shows guests are far less likely to book a rental if a security deposit is required. HomeAway itself has taken steps to eliminate them and this has become a trend in the industry. HomeAway expects large adoption of this and Mock’s Amelia Vacations wants to take advantage of this trend. Mock’s Amelia Vacations requires each guest to purchase a minimum $1,500 damage waiver, but it can be up to $5,000 if the property is larger or multiple units. This enables owners to rest assured damage is covered, however owners should expect that from time-to-time normal wear-and-tear will happen outside the policy. A standard in the property management industry is to withhold 4% of gross rents to cover the costs of small items, however Mock’s Amelia Vacations does not do this. Owners should expect every now and then they might have to replace a fork or knife, do some touch-up painting, replace a sink or shower fixture, etc. All homes experience periodic maintenance. Guests do sign a contract committing to paying for damage via their credit card on file, and there are strict policies when additional cleaning is needed as well.
Often, we are asked what types of things are replaced under this policy. Generally, a good rule of thumb is that well-maintained, durable items in good working condition, that are damaged as a result of a guest’s actions are covered. The damage waiver is not a guarantee that nothing will ever be broken or stop working in your home. It is intended to be replace broken or damaged items that resulted from a guest making a mistake.
Everything from small appliances, to plumbing fixtures, furniture and electronics eventually wear-out. If a guest drops a blender and it smashes on the floor, the damage protection kicks in! But if a guest is using a blender that is several years old and it just stops working, it is not replaced as part of the damage waiver. If a rug is dirty from regular foot traffic, it is not replaced as part of the damage waiver. If a guest spills an entire bottle of red wine on a rug, the damage waiver kicks in. If a guest sits down on an inexpensive couch and a leg breaks off, it is generally not their fault. If a guest spills pasta sauce all over it, then the damage waiver applies.
The damage waiver applies to most furniture as well, however it does not apply to things like fragile antique seating or dining tables, inexpensive plastic seating, furniture that is clearly old, worn, visibly weak or rusted. These are all items we highly recommend removing from a home for safety purposes. And while we love inexpensive furniture from Ikea or other discount stores, it is known not to be very durable. The damage waiver does not apply to furniture that is not designed to hold up to regular guest use, particularly MDF or plastic.
What if I want to stay there, how do I book for friends, family or myself?
You can view your availability and book online through our Owner Net portal or Owner’s app. There is obviously no charge for this and we even schedule cleaning when you leave so it is ready for the next guest. We bill you on your owner statement for the cleaning.