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Ready to get your listing up and running? Follow our simple steps below to get your listing in gear. Once you’ve built your listing, you can access your listing manager to make edits at any time by clicking “Edit Listing” from the left side of your dashboard.
1. Set your location
When it comes to choosing a vacation rental, location is a huge part of the decision-making process. All new listings require the following:
Don't worry — we respect your privacy and will never display addresses on your listing and we never share address information with anyone except for your confirmed guests.
Having a valid location enables travelers to find you when they search a particular area and makes it easy for them to see how close your properties are to local attractions and events. The area you property appears in traveler searches is based on the latitude and longitude of the property address provided. You can also create an Insider Guide that showcases your favorite points of interest on the map to make trip planning easier. Plus, you are able to control how much travelers can zoom in on your pin.
Having a valid location is part of your listing quality scorecard, which affects where your property appears in traveler search results. Learn more about listing quality.
Tell potential guests about your property in as much detail as you think travelers might need. At a minimum, your headline needs to be 20 characters and your description needs to be 400 characters. However, we encourage you to be as detailed as possible! It really helps them decide if your property meets their needs.
Make sure your guests can easily see all the extras your property has to offer. Be sure to mention all the selling points, including proximity to nearby attractions, location, seasonal information and key amenities. Your listing must include the following information:
But don’t stop there! Include all the amenities your property offers: Listing everything from a TV to a pool will allow you to show up in searches when travelers use those filters to search properties. Plus, the more travelers know beforehand, the more likely they are to move forward with your property.
Provide your email address and phone number so potential guests can contact you. You can control which contact information is visible to travelers, but we at HomeAway also need to have your contact information so that we can communicate with you. We encourage you to enter an SMS-enabled mobile number so that you can receive inquiry/booking request notifications via text message.
4. Add 24 high-resolution photos
Showcase your property to travelers with big, beautiful photos, including the living room, kitchen, bedrooms, bathrooms, outdoor spaces, pool, view, and anything else that makes your rental special.
And make sure they're big, so they don't appear grainy or blurry. The ideal photo size is 1024x768. To check the size of a photo, simply right click on the photo. The minimum number of photos is six, but we recommend 24 so that travelers can get a full picture of your property. Check out the Top 10 Tips for staging the perfect photo.
Having enough photos is part of your listing quality scorecard, which affects where your property appears in traveler search results. Learn more about listing quality.
For new owners, setting up rates is part of making your listing visible to travelers. Quotable rates enable travelers to get an instant, accurate quote for their particular dates.
You’ll need to list a standard rate, which covers all dates, or at least one seasonal rate for a specific time period to get started. Most vacation rental owners differentiate rates between seasons and have weekend, monthly, or weekly rate options as well.
You can set your rates however you like – we recommend looking at similar accommodation options in your area. Remember, price is one of the most important factors in choosing a vacation rental. We recommend setting flat rates for special events in your area like a music festival or conference. Learn more about quotable rates.
Quotable rates is part of your listing quality score. Learn more about listing quality.
If you have pay-per-booking...
You won’t be able to visit your dashboard until you have completed all four steps of the listing builder.
In addition to the above, pay-per-booking listings must have cancellation policies and an active HomeAway Payments account in place to go live. This is because if you have a pay-per-booking listing, you are required to use Homeaway Payments for each booking.
Accept online payments
Travelers want the convenience and security of paying online, so listings with HomeAway Payments get 2.5x more views.* Our secure, integrated online payment system makes it easy for you to send quotes and request payment while giving travelers the ability to pay online. Our 2.5% credit card processing fee is incredibly affordable, and eChecks are free. In addition, with HomeAway Payments much of the management process is automated, including payment schedules and review requests. If you have quotable rates, you will also automatically get the “Book it Now” button – which helps listings get 50% more bookings than those without**!
Having and using online booking and HomeAway payments is an important factor of your listing quality score. Learn more about listing quality.
Note: If you have a pay-per-booking listing you are required to use Homeaway Payments for each booking.
Research shows that having reviews from previous guests on your listing is one of the most important things a traveler needs to move forward with the booking process. Our system makes it easy to contact, capture, display, and even respond to those reviews. When you use our Reservation Manager tools found in your dashboard or Mobile Hospitality Manager, reviews will automatically be requested for you.
The number of reviews you have, and how recent they are, are also part of your listing quality score! How good your reviews are matter too – make sure to give your guests the best possible experience so that you get high star ratings! Learn more about listing quality.
Your owner dashboard allows you to see all your bookings at a glance and track a property's rental history. Keep it up-to-date so travelers that like your property can easily tell if it’s available for their dates. This will also ensure it shows up when travelers do a date-based search. If your calendar isn’t updated at least every 60 days, your listing may be hidden from searches where travelers enter specific dates.
By the way, if you have online booking, reservations are automatically added to your calendar, which will always be considered up-to-date.
An updated calendar is part of your listing quality score. Learn more about listing quality.
Enhance your listing with links to your personal site, interactive tours, and videos of your vacation rental. It's just another way to showcase all your property has to offer. By the way, if you have online booking, reservations are automatically added to your calendar, which will always be considered up-to-date.
*Based on average listing performance for Classic subscription levels on HomeAway.com and VRBO.com in January 2013.
**Represents the average increase in bookings based on adoption by our customers