While there still may be uncertainty ahead, one constant we can count on is the good nature of human beings during difficult times.
The opportunity to provide accommodations to those in need has given us at Effortless Rental Group a way to bring light to a dark time for so many. Our friends over at Rent Responsibly have been on a beautiful mission to #FindTheHelpers.
As they outline on their website:
While we may not be able to see the light at the end of the COVID-19 tunnel yet, there are countless STR hosts and managers who will be bright spots along the way, stepping up to help others like never before.
Every effort to help and every act of kindness matters, from delivering groceries to elderly neighbors, to donating cancellation fees to cleaning staff, to housing medical staff for a local hospital.
We’re here to celebrate the people of this community and show the world what we’re all about our passion for caring for others.
We are right there with you Rent Responsibly and are honored you reached out for an interview about the Free Lodging Program we are offering those in need.
Just north of downtown, you will find Denver’s most distinctive neighborhood—RiNo. Also known as the River North Arts District, this community is packed with galleries, shops, studios, and boundless murals. Immerse yourself in a dense pocket of Denver culture filled with delectable food and beverage spots!
Here’s our top 5 list:
1. Improper City – Food trucks, local music, craft drinks, and a MASSIVE patio. They also open at 7am on weekdays for you folks that ‘work remote.’
2. First Draft – A craft beer lover’s dream. 40 taps of beer, wine, and cider with no lines! Pour your own and leave the crowded bar scene in the past.
3. Death & Company – Perfect spot to get unique, handcrafted cocktails and small bites before or after hitting the town.
4. Finn’s Manor – Open back patio with rotating food trucks outside, cozy bar with 400 whiskeys inside. Need we say more?
5. Fish N Beer – Do you have hesitations about seafood in this coastally-challenged city? If so, Fish N Beer will squash them. Always delicious, always fresh.
Airbnb, VRBO, and Homeaway, oh my! What’s the difference, and why be on all of them?
The last decade has really seen a boom in the “share” community with companies that really facilitate the way that homeowners can rent out their spare bedroom or home to potential guests. Companies like Airbnb and VRBO/HomeAway have made it easier than ever to take your getaway to the next level of comfort. You can literally stay in a Home Away From Home! It’s also made keeping your investment properties and spare bedrooms booked easier than ever because there are over a hundred million users worldwide. But what’s the difference? Is Airbnb or VRBO better for vacation properties? What about for guests? Well, when you list your short-term rental property with Effortless Rental Group your properties automatically gets listed to to both Airbnb and VRBO/HomeAway as well as on every single one of our partners which include some of the largest booking sites in the world like Expedia and Booking.com, but let’s break them down.
Since their inception in 2008, Airbnb has become a household name for both travelers and hosts seeking to make a profit by providing that “home away from home” experience. Airbnb generally charges a Host fee of 3% of the subtotal. This depends on how strict your cancelation policy is or if you live in Italy. Airbnb charges guests anywhere between 0% and 20% depending on the subtotal, cleaning fees, and length of the stay.
Airbnb has an extensive network of users all around the world and has really sought to create the entire end-to-end travel experience in a single, easy to use app. Airbnb acquired HotelTonight in April which signals that they are interested in growing and have the means to do so. In addition to booking everything from shared rooms to entire mansions and everything in between, Airbnb provides guests with option to book experiences such as classes, workshops, and dinners all from the app. Through partnerships they even put on some once-in-a-lifetime experiences like letting guests stay the night in the Louvre.
VRBO has been around longer than Airbnb, created in 1995, and was acquired by HomeAway in 2006. The HomeAway network is also extensive and this is good for Hosts because their properties are shown to millions of potential guests. One of the main differences between VRBO and Airbnb is that VRBO doesn’t rent out the smaller listings (shared bedrooms, spare bedrooms, home’s where the host resides, etc.). Instead, VRBO focuses on larger properties entire homes, condos, and apartments. It makes for a more conventional stay. While there can be a certain charm to trips where you can crash with strangers like a Hostel, it is really nice to have privacy when you vacation.
The fees on VRBO are a little different than Airbnb in that there are two packages for hosts to choose from: a $499 fee paid annually (recommended for hosts who rent year-round) or a 5% booking fee. Guests can expect to pay between 5% and 15%.
So which should you choose to list your property on? Trick question, the answer is both and then some! With Effortless Rental Group, we show your rental property on Airbnb, VRBO, and a slew of other booking sites. We’ve even harnessed the power of Booking.com, Expedia, Kayak, Obitz, TripAdvisor, and many more to ensure that you you’re getting the most out of your short-term rental property.
Photo Credit: Black Eye Coffee (https://www.drinkblackeye.com/)
Black Eye Coffee
3408 Navajo St, Denver, CO 80211
District 2 (Highlands)
Owner: Michelle Ackerman
Year opened: 2012
Number of employees: 9
About Black Eye Coffee
Like the iconic North Denver neighborhood that we call home, this place has a rich and robust history filled with plenty of heart, grit and good old-fashioned character. Long before it was a coffee house, this building was known for a different kind of brew—Coors beer, to be exact.
Mile High Hosts surveyed over 300 Denver guests in the fall of 2019 and what was discovered was a not-so-surprising trend; guests of short-term rentals spend a lot of time and money at local neighborhood businesses. One type of business was repeatedly called out and that was coffee shops.
We asked Michelle Ackerman, the owner of Black Eye Coffee, a few short questions to find out more about this observed trend.
How important is the business that the guests of short-term rentals bring to your business?
It’s significant. I know this because I get reports from the Google Analytics Tool for how many people are searching for us and from where they are searching. For example, I can see people are searching from Kansas City and they are searching for directions to the coffee shop. The number of people I can see conducting searches like this is significant. Locals obviously know where we are.
There are so many changes happening for local businesses. The city of Denver recently raised the minimum wage, and in addition, my rent goes up significantly each year. With these two challenges being my reality, losing short-term rental clientele business would make it extremely challenging for me to stay in business.
What do you believe short-tern rentals bring to small businesses?
What makes Denver a destination for all tourism is the number of great things we have to offer travelers. Short-term rentals play directly into that equation, delivering a repeatable source of new money to small businesses and neighborhoods. People enjoy visiting the local spots, the things people don’t have back home and without us, I think Denver becomes less of an attractive destination. Restricting guests from staying in short-term rentals impacts our Denver eco-system, small and large businesses alike.
There may be people that live in the neighborhood that may feel differently about STRs. What would you say to those that aren’t completely on board with home-sharing in their neighborhood?
There could be solutions that are a win-win. I don’t know what policies are being considered for the future but I think there should be more collaboration to find a solution that works for all. Maybe we all don’t get all that we want, but we can get a portion of it. I read a lot about the good neighbor policies that help eliminate the challenges that neighbors have are a great solution to help everyone see the benefit of short-term rentals.
It’s been an incredible two years at Effortless Rental Group. We’ve had over 21,000 guests from around the world stay in 103 beautiful properties throughout Colorado and in Boston. Here’s what our guests are saying about their experiences with us. And here’s to another great year ahead!
“An absolute dream place to stay! The location is amazing, property is just how the pictures depict it, and the communication from the hosts was great! I wouldn’t consider any other place for future trips.”
“It was a perfect house in a great neighborhood for our team retreat. Nice large common areas and enough rooms to spread out. Rob & Tiffany made check in super convenient and were very responsive. We also loved the neighborhood and close proximity to great restaurants and downtown.”
“Our group had a wonderful stay at Stefan’s cabin. We most enjoyed the fully-stocked kitchen, stunning views of Breckenridge, and relaxing hot tub. If you are looking for a quiet vacation that is perfect for families and large groups, this rental is an excellent choice. We hope to be back soon!”
“Perfect for a couple or small family who wants to enjoy the beauty of South Boulder. The home is cozy, well maintained, recently updated, and nestled in a quiet neighborhood that is close to so many amazing sights and adventures. The service from Sami and the guest experience team was phenomenal too. Good all the way around!!”
“This place was even better than we expected. The photos are so accurate and the rental looks even more amazing in person. It is in a great, safe and easily accessible location. I will definitely be renting here for my next trip up to Boston and I highly recommend anyone to stay there!”
Good feedback is essential in the short term rental management industry. A potential guest will often pay more attention to reviews than any other part of a listing, including photos or descriptions. Travelers trust other travelers when it comes to a property’s cleanliness, amenities, and proximity to dining, nightlife, and family-friendly activities. Your listing will get more views—and more bookings—if it features positive feedback from guests.
Guests are more likely to leave you a positive review if your place is clean and well-maintained, correspondence is quick and helpful, and you’ve gone out of your way to make their stay the best it can be, like providing a list of nearby restaurants and coffee shops. Not only will positive reviews help your listing gain attention, but the guests who have written them are also likely to recommend your home to others in the future.