Lake District Holiday Let

If you are planning to buy a rental home, or you're thinking about what to do with one you have just acquired, this is the place for any questions about starting out in the rentals business.
postknottlodge
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Apr 25, 2022 11:08 am

Lake District Holiday Let

Post by postknottlodge »

Have recently acquired a property in the Lake District on Lake Windermere.

No mortgage and will be used primarily as a holiday let with roughly 20% of the year used for personal.

After some advice on startup really:

1. Using PMP to create and host website or buy our own website and allow PMP to host that (we like the idea of a proper website address with corresponding email addresses, info@, bookings@ etc). Is it worth doing?

2. Can PMP and PIMS work in tandem? (seen both suggested various times after reading the forum)

3. 100% staying away from Sykes etc. Would be using AirBnB, Booking.com, Vrbo and Tripadvisor from the get go to see which worked for us and which didnt, but ideally want bookings to be directed through to booking with us direct. Will use Facebook, Instagram etc to heavily market the property.

4. Property is fairly well marketed already as has been previously used as a holiday let.

5. 6/7 bedrooms that upon research will more than likely take us over the VAT threshold. Would it be more adviseable to set this up as a company and run it that way.

6. Similar proprty nearby uses Smoobu for their website, any good or are the others suggested much better?

Thanks in advance, very new to all this so just trying to get head around it all.
Joanna
Posts: 1083
Joined: Thu Aug 23, 2007 3:12 pm
Location: Chester, North West England & Sidmouth, East Devon
Contact:

Re: Lake District Holiday Let

Post by Joanna »

Welcome to the forum!
In answer to your first question - as you're just starting out you'll find it useful to have a website that you can easily add to and update as you go along. I haven't used PMP but I gather that you can use it that way. You definitely need your own domain name for the website & email - it's more professional than using a Gmail address, for example. Which is important when you need to reassure potential guests that you are genuine and not out to scam them. Hopefully, a PMP user will be along soon to let you know how well PIMS works with it. I use PIMS and it works well for our 2 properties - keeps me organised & makes double bookings all but impossible.
Jo

Joint owner of Baker's Cottage in Chester & Chandler's Cottage in Sidmouth
newtimber
Posts: 1903
Joined: Sat Nov 24, 2012 5:57 pm
Location: Brighton
Contact:

Re: Lake District Holiday Let

Post by newtimber »

If you're planning on using lots of channels like Airbnb, Trip etc, then you really need a booking system with a channel manager otherwise you run the risk of double bookings. I think PIMS only provides iCal links which run the risk of double bookings if guests try to book your property on Airbnb and Trip at the same time. It can take several hours for the calendars to sync across all the sites.

There are lots of booking systems which do have integrated channel managers. I use Beds24 but I'm sure other people will rush forward and say their booking system is the best!
Joanna
Posts: 1083
Joined: Thu Aug 23, 2007 3:12 pm
Location: Chester, North West England & Sidmouth, East Devon
Contact:

Re: Lake District Holiday Let

Post by Joanna »

Good point from Newtimber about double bookings - I don't have 'instant book' enabled when I use ABB, etc. so double bookings aren't an issue. But, if you want to allow instant booking on more than one platform then PIMS may not be ideal as the calendar won't be synced in real time.
Jo

Joint owner of Baker's Cottage in Chester & Chandler's Cottage in Sidmouth
postknottlodge
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Apr 25, 2022 11:08 am

Re: Lake District Holiday Let

Post by postknottlodge »

Thanks for advise. We will more than likely not want Instant Book as an option, i know AirBnB you have the option for that, is this the same for Booking.com and TripAdvisor as well or do they not have that facility. We want to be able to have that initial communication with someone first as we can offer a more bespoke booking than just the whole house, less rooms, added beds to rooms for children etc.

In an ideal world we want bookings to come direct through our website, having one professionally made for us. But also understand people do use OTA's (i do myself) so realise they are a great marketing tool (even if just cheekily using them).

We will be on CoolStays and hopefully the marketing we do ourselves will direct to our website.
Joanna
Posts: 1083
Joined: Thu Aug 23, 2007 3:12 pm
Location: Chester, North West England & Sidmouth, East Devon
Contact:

Re: Lake District Holiday Let

Post by Joanna »

I haven't used Booking.com - I think they used to be instant book only, but I could be wrong. TA used to have the option of Instant Book, although the last time I looked they had switched it off. Not sure if that's just temporary.
Jo

Joint owner of Baker's Cottage in Chester & Chandler's Cottage in Sidmouth
Post Reply