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Old 07-14-2015, 05:12 PM   #21
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We've used Airbnb, VRBO and Homeaway. All have worked out well for us. We pay a lot of attention to both reviews and location. We check the street view just to make sure everything looks OK. We've actually had the best luck with Homeaway, but that may just be a coincidence.

Good luck!
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Old 07-15-2015, 01:54 AM   #22
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Like Zinger, I've had concerns about the last minute cancellations I see on Airbnb. I don't see that on other vacation rental sites.

That said - we use vacation apartments almost exclusively when travelling with family. It's nice to wake up and make coffee and not have to get dressed/showered before breakfast. It's nice to have the kids in a separate room. It's nice to have space.... all for less than a hotel.

Our current vacation involves 11 rentals in 7 countries... so yeah - we use vacation rentals.
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Old 07-15-2015, 08:41 AM   #23
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We rent the lake house out via 10-12 different sites (Airbnb, homeaway, vrbo, flipkey, glampinghub ....). As a client you might want to check the other sites for the SAME place. Airbnb "forces" me - as a host - into a cancellation policy. This gets priced into the nightly rate (10-15% higher). Also Airbnb books like a hotel - nightly - no discounts for longer stays. A weekly renter will pay 20-25% higher price on Airbnb then on any other site.

So it pays to shop around.
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Old 07-15-2015, 09:24 AM   #24
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Like Zinger, I've had concerns about the last minute cancellations I see on Airbnb. I don't see that on other vacation rental sites.
Happened to me once on VRBO. Cancelled same day as arrival ! Got every penny of the deposit back via PayPal but did leave me and my family stranded in NYC.
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Old 07-15-2015, 10:28 AM   #25
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Also Airbnb books like a hotel - nightly - no discounts for longer stays. A weekly renter will pay 20-25% higher price on Airbnb then on any other site.
Are you sure? I'm not a host but have read up on them a good bit, and booked weekly rentals at lower prices than nightly rentals. I think you have to input the weekly or monthly rental rates and then they automatically apply if the reservation is 7+ days or 30-31+ days. You can also put in minimum stays of 3 nights, 7 nights, etc.

For renters, when you're searching for properties, it might be cheaper to search for a 7 day period instead of 5-6 days since sometimes the weekly rate is cheaper than 5-6 nights.
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Old 07-15-2015, 10:54 AM   #26
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I think you have to input the weekly or monthly rental rates and then they automatically apply if the reservation is 7+ days or 30-31+ days. You can also put in minimum stays of 3 nights, 7 nights, etc.
Not sure .... had "fun" triing to add a holiday rate to the 4th of july. Was able to "edit" the daily rate on the calendar to accomplish this. Also took a week long Aug booking at an Airbnb "premium" since it booked at the nightly rate x7. Kind of like things the way they are.

Got an email from airbnb yesterday stating that in Aug we'll be able to charge the state sales tax back to the client. Up until Aug tax was just another reason to set the nightly rate higher (10% in my hood).
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Old 07-15-2015, 03:16 PM   #27
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Are you sure? I'm not a host but have read up on them a good bit, and booked weekly rentals at lower prices than nightly rentals. I think you have to input the weekly or monthly rental rates and then they automatically apply if the reservation is 7+ days or 30-31+ days. You can also put in minimum stays of 3 nights, 7 nights, etc.
Agree, I've seen units in Airbnb that offered lower weekly and monthly rates. As I understand it any rental over 28 days automatically has a 'long term' cancellation policy which means if the guest cancels at anytime they will lose all of the first months rent.
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Old 07-28-2015, 10:48 AM   #28
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I just booked an Airbnb for NYC in September. This was my first time booking through Airbnb. A group of us stayed in an Airbnb apt in Boston last fall. Another person in the group did the booking. The apt was in a great location and was a very nice place. Hope this NYC trip works out for me.
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Old 07-28-2015, 06:54 PM   #29
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Who does all the cleaning/washing when rented long term?


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Old 07-28-2015, 06:57 PM   #30
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Who does all the cleaning/washing when rented long term?
I believe most places will give you the option of doing it yourself, or they will charge a fee for daily/weekly/monthly cleaning.
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Old 07-29-2015, 12:51 AM   #31
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Who does all the cleaning/washing when rented long term?
I think all of the places we've visited have included a final cleaning for free or for a mandatory charge. Which means you can leave it dirty. At most, they ask you to wash and put away all dishes and empty the trash. Most places we stayed in Mexico didn't even require washing dishes and emptying trash, as these are routine services provided by the maid.

As for cleaning during your stay, it's probably up to you unless you arrange maid service through your host. I imagine some higher end places might include maid service 1-2x/wk, especially in countries where maid service is common (like Mexico).

One place had a maid come 4x a week, and we were on the hook only for her tip (60 pesos/$4 USD per day), but it was a large house with 4 BR's, 2 kitchens, 3 bathrooms, multiple patios and gardens, etc.

Most other places we rented had a maid available for usually around $15-20 per visit for about 4 hours of cleaning including washing dishes, linens, mop/sweep/dust, etc. We skipped it since we needed to spot clean almost daily given our 3 young kids (love em but they make a mess).
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Old 07-29-2015, 10:22 AM   #32
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One place had a maid come 4x a week, and we were on the hook only for her tip (60 pesos/$4 USD per day), but it was a large house with 4 BR's, 2 kitchens, 3 bathrooms, multiple patios and gardens, etc.
We pay our maid 200 pesos/day and that it about double the rate they get paid by hotels. Please don't tell her about the 60 pesos/day tips.

She gets paid more than her husband. And he has a professional job.
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Old 07-29-2015, 03:28 PM   #33
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Like some others, I've had good and bad experiences. I just got back from CA, and it wasn't the best experience. No mention in the reviews of the traffic noise, which was pretty bad. The beeping garbage truck at 3:15 am that went around the streets for almost 1/2 an hour was awful. No screens on the only two windows that opened so the bugs came in, and only one smoke detector, which was in the second bedroom. One thing this experience taught me was to ask a lot of questions of the host and don't rely solely on the reviews.
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Old 07-29-2015, 08:30 PM   #34
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We pay our maid 200 pesos/day and that it about double the rate they get paid by hotels. Please don't tell her about the 60 pesos/day tips.

She gets paid more than her husband. And he has a professional job.
That's probably about right. We paid our maid an extra ~40 pesos per hour for cooking for us per the host's suggestion. So 200 pesos for 4-5 hour cleaning session is roughly what our lady got paid. Maybe our tips were all the maids got paid, but we figured we were paying $400 pesos per week in tips for roughly 22 hours of cleaning services (the compound was largish).
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Old 07-30-2015, 09:25 PM   #35
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My wife and I have used AirBnB four times with mixed results, one in Maui, HI, in Paris, France, Rome and Lake Como, Italy...we've experienced some mixed results. We try to limit our choices to those properties with a lot of favorable reviews...but even with that filter, there were still a couple of experiences that I would rather not have to relive.
The property in Maui and Paris were nice...the apartment in Como was decent but the reviews didn't mention anything about loud noise emanating from a main pedestrian thoroughfare even close to midnight...and the experience in Rome was short of a nightmare. We arrived in Rome from a train from Venice to find out that the apartment "supposedly" had a busted water pipe. At least the proprietor found us a "comparable" apartment, with a promise that he will get the busted pipe fixed and we can move into his apartment the following day...we really didn't have much choice but to settle for what he found for us. In the end, the original apartment didn't become available throughout our 4-night stay in Rome and I cannot help but feel like he overbooked and used the busted water pipe as an excuse. I just had to make sure I wrote an "appropriate" review to share our experiences with other AirBnB users.
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Old 07-31-2015, 01:36 PM   #36
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I would have insisted on an inspection to assure ourselves that the fixed pipe was not all that was needed. He would have denied us and then we would have known for sure that we had been scammed.
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Old 08-01-2015, 09:47 PM   #37
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We arrived in Rome from a train from Venice to find out that the apartment "supposedly" had a busted water pipe. At least the proprietor found us a "comparable" apartment, with a promise that he will get the busted pipe fixed and we can move into his apartment the following day...we really didn't have much choice but to settle for what he found for us. In the end, the original apartment didn't become available throughout our 4-night stay in Rome and I cannot help but feel like he overbooked and used the busted water pipe as an excuse. I just had to make sure I wrote an "appropriate" review to share our experiences with other AirBnB users.
We had a similar experience in Tulum, Mexico last week. And from Airbnb reviews, it has happened before. The owners said the original place we booked suffered from a failed A/C and they were waiting on a part to come in from Cancun 2 hours away that might take a while.

Owners put us up in an "upgrade" that was much roomier and pretty nice with a larger kitchen and dining area and living room. The bedrooms each had larger beds (king in the master, 2 doubles and a futon in the kids' room). There were some issues with the "upgrade" but they got fixed eventually. We were happy as the place was really nice and the owners said it rents at 2x the price of what we booked (which still looked pretty nice but was only $65 USD/nt).

I kept wondering if we were being scammed somehow but I can't see how they were benefiting in any way. The replacement property they put us up in was slightly less conveniently located (about 5-6 blocks away from the nearest stores and restaurants instead of 2-3 blocks for the original place we booked). Other than that, I can't see how it could be a scam.
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Old 08-02-2015, 09:25 AM   #38
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...............

I kept wondering if we were being scammed somehow but I can't see how they were benefiting in any way. The replacement property they put us up in was slightly less conveniently located (about 5-6 blocks away from the nearest stores and restaurants instead of 2-3 blocks for the original place we booked). Other than that, I can't see how it could be a scam.
They probably have someone pick the locks on properties that are vacant while their absentee owners are not in town. VRBN - (vacation rental by non owner).
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Old 08-02-2015, 11:03 AM   #39
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We have friends in PV who rented to a guy and he did not show up. They discovered that he had been admitted to another condo down the beach that they only discovered when his questions were about things they did not have. The other condo owner got no compensation for the three days it took to discover.
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Old 08-03-2015, 12:12 AM   #40
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Used it last year in nyc and was great. We are doing another trip end of this month. Picked out a place with sixty good reviews. I have contacted the host twice in the last two weeks about slightly earlier chick in..1 to 2 hour earlier than his stated time. Zero response.

I would rather not call him as that apparantely is only typically for emergencies which is onviously not the case. Makes me very leary but of the reviews posted there was only one moderatly negative and all others were good including comments on how quickly he responds to questions so im scratching my head on this one.
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