Family getaways are much needed but sometimes a hotel doesn’t offer the best setting for cooking meals, providing space for the little ones to play and privacy. In the last few years we’ve started looking for homes to rent for weekend or week long getaways. This allows me to work while still traveling with the family too – a hotel is too cramped to allow this for our entire family and because I often combine work with my business travel we’ve found renting a spacious home on a lake or nearby activities makes the most sense.
The last three homes’ we’ve rented have been rented from Vacation Rental by Owner (VRBO). I personally recommend this site to friends and family for several reasons.
- It is easy to search. You can search by location, price and space.
- The reviews by the previous renters tell you a great deal about the owner renting the property, the amenities and property has a hole. Like buying on Amazon, you can get a feel for the product before buying. The reviews are also reviewed before being published and there is a verification process, which is nice because you know you are reading authentic reviews.
- You can contact the owner. Often the owner will negotiate the price, especially if the home has not been rented for a particular week. I like to try and negotiate the price and to ask questions, some sites don’t let you do this very easily.
- Photos are helpful in giving you a feel for the property. I like seeing the different rooms of the homes before I rent and getting a sense of how the home could work for my family. The more photos I see posted the more likely I am to rent the home and that often helps me cruise through the listings faster. If someone only has one photo, I breeze right by and go to the next property for rent.
This last week, for example we rented a home near family because of a large graduation party we were going to be attending. My cousins help watch the children why I work from the rental home and it allows me to visit with them in the morning and evening but still be productive for work. The kids have fun so it is the best of both worlds. We found the home on VRBO and the owner was willing to accommodate our schedule, the listing was exactly as promised and from the reviews I could tell he had many happy renters in the past. The photos showed the home beautifully and delivered everything it promised and more! If you’ll be in the Ann Arbor area or you’re looking for the perfect Michigan home to rent on a lake that is clean, has amazing views and more amenities than you can image you have to check out this home in Whitmore Lake! It was funny, I was working from the kitchen table the kids were in the water and playing on the beach and they needed beach towels. I panicked because I had forgotten beach towels but no worries; the owners had dozens of beach towels! They had thought of everything and it made our stay very enjoyable!
Do you rent vacation homes or homes for work travel to make your stay more comfortable? Have you ever used Vacation Rental by Owner? I’d love to hear what you think or what sites you use.