The Absolute, Number One, Most Important Detail …

958433      . . . . Cleaning!

As we approach the holidays and a great number of guest arrivals, cleaning concerns are in the forefront of my mind.  Vacation Rentals of the Desert gives owners the option of doing their own cleaning, using their personal cleaner or enlisting our cleaning service.  Thankfully most of our owners use our cleaning service who are skilled in the cleaning requirements of a vacation rental property.  For the few owners that choose to handle their own cleaning, we provide a list of requirements and will schedule an inspection of the clean prior to the guest’s arrival.  This system works well most of the time.  Many owners have very high expectations themselves … but for a few, we will unfortunately have an uncomfortable conversation.  Pointing out areas that are missed can be embarrassing for owners that have spent hours and hours cleaning, and they may take the news on a personal rather than professional level.  A couple of months ago I inspected a property after the owner had cleaned.  I always take my camera, and on this occasion it came in handy.  I probably took two dozen photos to back up our need for additional cleaning.  The issues ran from a dirty toilet to food drips on the kitchen trash container; a dirty coffee maker to crumbs in the bottom of the toaster oven, etc.  The owner was greatly offended and wondered “if he should not do vacation rentals in the future.”  After a heart-to-heart, I am hopeful that this owner will see that the cost of a professional cleaning is more than worth his time and trouble. 

So I felt that today I should rerun my very first blog post, dated December 31, 2013.  I cannot say it enough … You can give your guests a huge discount; you can leave them treats, theater tickets, gifts …. none of this, absolutely none, nothing, nada, period, end of story …. will compensate for a dirty property.  Cleaning is the absolute NUMBER ONE most important, not to be circumvented, never to be taken lightly, detail in running a successful vacation rental property!

Question:  You arrive at your hotel room, enter the bathroom, lift up the toilet seat and find yellow stains around the Porcelain rim.  What do you do next?  

I rest my case!

Please read on ….

 

Dec 31, 2013 

Vacation Rentals of the Desert has sparkling clean propertiesThe Absolute,

Number One,

Most Important Detail

 … Cleaning!

 

 

The following is rather blunt … but I hope to create an “Ahh Haa” moment for my readers.  As a vacation rental manager it is one of the most critical aspects of my business and may be the single most import advice I will ever share.

The absolute, number one, most import detail in a successful rental property … and I cannot stress this enough … is cleanliness!  Cutting corners by hiring a cleaner at a lower cost can ultimately cost you much more than a few dollars.  Once a guest has found one area overlooked they will certainly be looking for more and with a much more critical eye.  If the oversight is not addressed immediately this quickly progresses to a second problem … an unhappy guest who will not only give your property a bad review costing you future bookings but your guests will now be less forgiving of any of the properties shortcomings and most certainly will not become a repeat tenant.  All this to save a few dollars?  I will say this many times throughout my future posts … “It is very expensive to be cheap!”  My company,Vacation Rentals of the Desert, guarantees our cleaning service.  If an area is overlooked we immediately schedule the cleaners to return.  We have checks and balances to assure this does not happen but on the rare occasion when something is overlooked, our reaction is prompt and courteous.  There are many areas that may easily be overlooked by cleaners who are not trained in vacation rental cleaning such as organizing linen closets and under kitchen and bathroom sinks.  Identifying and throwing away undesirable items such as used bars of soap, dated or open dry goods, refrigerated containers that are open or are not in squeeze bottles.  Say you have an open jar of mayonnaise or jelly in the refrigerator.  To a first time vacation rental owner this may seem like a convenient condiment for their guest.  Now put yourself in the guest’s shoes … their thoughts … who made a sandwich, licked the knife and stuck it back into the jar?  These items are viewed as gross and definitely unwanted.

As a vacation rental manager or private owner preparing a property for guests, you must have the ability to look through your guest’s eyes and view the property on a less personal level.  Toiletries such as toothpaste, toothbrushes and used shampoo fall into the same category.  These items are unsightly and give the guest an uncomfortable feeling of being an unwelcome trespasser.   I have found hemorrhoid creams, feminine hygiene products, condoms and even a set of false teeth in a jar under bathroom sinks, undergarments in bedroom drawers, personal letters and bills in desk drawers … this is definitely too much information (TMI) and can easily sour a guest’s vacation.  Ceiling fans, light fixtures, baseboards, screens and slider tracks, spotted shower doors, plumbing fixtures and windows … all are critical in presenting a clean and welcoming property.  The owner of our cleaning service puts it this way, “every surface must be touched and cleaned.”  This advice you can take to the bank … cutting corners to save a few dollars on cleaning will, not may, but will cost you future rental income and added stress in dealing with unpleasant guest complaints.   Is this worth saving $10, $50 or $100?

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