Renting out your cottage when you're not using it can bring in attractive extra income. This could help cover your property maintenance costs, which can be substantial. Thanks to the Web, your cottage will get greater visibility and have a better chance of being rented out on a regular basis.
As the property owner, there are certain rules you should follow to make the experience a satisfactory one for both parties. To help you out, here are five tips to remember before posting your rental:

1. Notify your insurance company

You've just noticed that a window on your cottage is damaged after a rental, an extra expense you could have done without… Unfortunately, damage can happen. For peace of mind, ask your insurance company if you're covered for eventual damage by renters before you put your cottage on the rental market. They'll be able to tell you what you're covered for (property damage, bodily injury, etc.) and for how much.

2. Investigate potential renters

Finding trustworthy renters isn't always easy, which is why it's best to exercise caution. In addition to collecting the necessary payment information, dig a little deeper on potential renters to avoid problems. Ask about the reason for their stay during your exchanges, for example. It's also a very good idea to set certain rules (no pets, non-smoking, limited number of nights, etc.), to better target your preferred renter. And don't forget to listen to your gut feeling!

3. Set clear rules

Seeing red after discovering some "surprises" left behind after a two-week rental? If you have specific expectations about how renters should conduct themselves in your cottage, make these clear. After all, your renter isn't a mind-reader. If you want guests to clean before leaving, take out the garbage, keep noise levels down after a certain time or other, it's good practice to leave a list of recommendations where your renter can see it. To make sure both parties are satisfied and to avoid issues down the road, have the renter sign an agreement listing their responsibilities during their stay.

4. Make sure your cottage is clean prior to a guest's arrival

Your cottage should be spotless when your new renter arrives. Your reputation can quickly be tarnished on the Web by negative comments from guests and cleanliness is one of the main sources of renter disappointment. Renters are expecting a pleasant stay in your cottage, so if they show up and it's not clean, they won't be happy! If you can't personally check your cottage before the next rental, ask a friend or hire professional cleaners. Always be sure your cottage is presentable and ready for new guests.

5. Remove any valuables and objects of importance

Your favourite vase is in a thousand pieces and you're already regretting renting out your cottage? To avoid having valuable items broken, lost or stolen, it's better to be safe than sorry. When renting out your cottage, keep these items in a safe place or put them in storage.
But remember: your cottage still needs to be inviting and feel like home during your renter's vacation. Be sure to provide basic supplies, including kitchen items and cleaning products.

Renting out your chalet in complete peace of mind has many benefits, including attractive returns on your investment. To make the most of your asset, it's important to take these transactions very seriously. Your property must provide the comfort renters expect. Also, a clean, well-maintained property is more likely to inspire guests to keep it that way.

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