Must Have Technology Gadgets For Your Vacation Rental
Written by Heidie Henriksen, Director of Sales & Marketing – RedAwning Owner Programs
Remember the days when checking into a vacation rental was so unconventional, you practically met up for the keys in a back alley and hoped for the best? We still live in the Wild West of key level inventory, but fortunately there are many hotel-esque features venturing into the realm and even business travelers are preferring vacation rentals for their longer trips. As a host or homeowner, you can provide many critical technology elements that boost your guest experience and positive reviews, along with giving you a competitive edge. Many of these upgrades are incredibly affordable to implement and some partners even provide a few of them on your behalf!
WiFi Connected Furnace Thermostat
Particularly if you live in an ever-changing climate, such as the mountains where snow and sun take a toll, a thermostat that is controlled by your phone or property management HQ is ideal. Rest assured that your home can be monitored 24/7 with just a few smart phone clicks. A few of our favorites include Ecobee4 with built-in Alexa and room sensors, Nest, and Honeywell.
How amazing is technology that provides access to a house using a key pad that is intelligent enough to reset after a guest’s departure, yet provide homeowners, housecleaners, and maintenance personnel their own individual access codes? Meet August – a smart lock system that logs every code used, automatically locks after a preset time frame, and installs easier than a regular deadbolt system. Some are even offered with a deadbolt camera and remote monitoring. And, if you’re looking to work with a property manager, many provide installation of a smart lock complimentary when you first sign up!
Imagine the features of a hotel front desk check-in experience and concierge a la hotel-style with the privacy and peace of a vacation rental? When Amazon introduced it’s Alexa for Hospitality program, it ventured into the Vacation Rental world with industry veteran RedAwning as it’s exclusive partner. “Alexa, what’s the Wifi code?” or “Alexa, make me dinner reservations for 7pm at the best sushi bar in town.” is all of a sudden a simple request. Forget the days of holding for the concierge desk or waiting in long lines at check-in and give your guests the comforts of a hotel and a home. With Alexa, guests can log into their Amazon Prime account and access their TV shows, movies, music and audiobooks from every speaker and smart TV in the home, creating an even more home-away-from-home environment.
Water Leak and Freeze Sensors
What if you live out of state from your vacation rental and the hot water heater leaks in-between your monthly maintenance check? What if you live in hurricane country? What if a guest leaves the bathroom water flowing? In addition to a WiFi furnace, Honeywell also offers sensors that can notify you on your smartphone when a leak is detected or the temperature in the home drops below a specified temperature of your choice. End result = avoid expensive repairs and potentially lost revenue.
It would seem as if everything was smart these days, and lighting is now part of the mix. There’s nothing worse than arriving to a new house and struggling to find the lights! What if a few lights turned on automatically with motion sensors and it didn’t cost an arm and a leg? Lutron has introduced a fantastic solution that provides a warm, welcoming environment, and ensures lights are turned off when no one is around for only $60. Carbon footprint and lower electric bills? CHECK!
Moral is, with a few small investments your Vacation Rental could stand light years ahead of your neighbor, guaranteeing you significant ROI and happy, repeat clientele.