Ways to Improve Your Vacation Rental Neighborhood Relationships

Guest Screening, Property Manager Tips
Ways to Improve Your Vacation Rental Neighborhood Relationships

Your vacation rental properties might be getting great reviews from guests and making a tidy profit. But if your property is in a residential area that isn’t specifically aimed at tourists, you risk alienating your neighbors. You might even attract the attention of the local authorities and face a ban on your vacation rental property. In fact, more and more local ordinances are popping up every few months regulating short-term rentals. 

Your best strategy is to get your local community on your side and build great vacation rental neighbor relationships. If you’re proactive in communicating with your neighbors, you’ll be more likely to achieve a peaceful solution should problems arise.

Avoid Risky Renters with Safely’s Guest Screening

How to build good relationships with vacation rental neighbors

Creating and maintaining a good relationship with your neighbors will reduce complaints and create a welcoming environment for your guests. With a few simple steps, you can lay the foundations for a warm and long-lasting relationship that will ensure any issues that arise are resolved in an amicable and considerate way.

1. Communicate and show you care

One way or another, your neighbors are going to find out about your vacation rental, but how they hear about it will affect their reaction. The last thing you want is for your neighbors to realize they’re living next to a vacation rental when they notice a group of strangers in your backyard.

Meeting your neighbors face to face will help you build trust with them. Take them a bottle of wine or a gift basket and try to put their minds at ease by showing you’ve given careful thought to how you’re going to manage your rental. 

  • Assure them you’ve got the necessary permits from the city or homeowner association (HOA)
  • Tell them you plan to screen your guests
  • Explain how you’ll market the property and the types of guests you aim to attract
  • Tell them about the house rules you’ll set to ensure guests are respectful of your residential neighborhood.
  • Give your neighbors your contact information and a direct line for emergencies, and make sure you answer their call immediately.

Someone welcoming people with gift to their home

2. Find out what problems they’ve had in the past

Ask your neighbors about their past problems with Airbnbs or other short-term rental properties in the neighborhood. If your neighbors are opposed to the idea of living next door to a vacation rental, it’s possible they’ve had a bad experience in the past

Listen to their concerns and explain what plans you have in place to address them. So if your neighbors tell you they once lived next door to a short-term rental where guests arrived in the middle of the night and woke them up, you can assure them that you’re only going to allow check-in during the day, or even at weekends.

Ultimately, you want your neighbors to feel they’ve had the chance to air their concerns and that you’ve listened to them.

3. Set clear house rules

Setting house rules so your guests know what you expect from them will encourage good behavior. You can set out your house rules in the listing itself, and add them to your confirmation email and other correspondence.

Getting the tone right is important. You want to be firm, but not be so draconian that you risk alienating your guests before they even arrive.

In particular, you should set clear rules on issues that might disrupt neighborhood relationships like parking, check-in and check-out times, excessive noise, use of communal areas, and how many people can be in the property at once.

4. Screen your guests

The biggest source of problems for vacation rental neighbor relationships is the guests themselves. No one minds when a delightful, quiet couple stays for a few days and adds to the overall charm of a residential neighborhood. It’s when their inconsiderate friends come for a late-night party that things can turn sour.

Using Safely’s guest screening is the most objective way to screen your guests. It uses criminal background checks and ID verification to check your guests are who they say they are. 

Key features of Safely guest screening:

  • PMS integration. You can set up guest screening to automatically sync with your property management system
  • Seamless process for guests. Visitors just need to provide their name, birth date, and address during booking and won’t feel like you’re asking them too many questions.
  • Objectivity. Safely gives each guest a risk score based on information from court records, county and national databases, international agencies, and The List, Safely’s proprietary database of guests who have previously caused problems.
  • Legal protection. Safely follows regulatory protocols and the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) so property owners have legal protection when they cancel a reservation based on Safely’s findings.
  • Protection for your property. Your property is less likely to be damaged if you screen your guests.

5. Encourage them to reach out

Encourage your neighbors to keep in touch and respond quickly to their concerns. To get your communication with neighbors off to a good start, you can send your neighbors a quick message to let them know when guests are arriving and follow up afterward to make sure everything was fine.

As well as letting them know about guest arrivals, you can keep communication channels open in other ways. If you’ve set up a guidebook to the area, you can share it with them and ask if they have other recommendations for restaurants or local attractions.

6. Install noise monitoring hardware

Most complaints from neighbors about a short-term rental relate to noise. To reduce the chance of a party taking place that upsets your neighbors, create a noise reduction action plan that includes:

  • Clear guidelines for guests on quiet hours
  • Consequences for guests that violate your house rules about noise ordinances
  • A limit on the number of guests who can stay
  • Setting a minimum age for guests of 25 years or older
  • Banning parties

You can also a WiFi connection monitoring tool like Party Squasher that alerts you if there are too many people inside one of your properties, based on your custom-set occupancy limit.

House party
WiFi connection monitoring technology can help you stop a party before it gets going.

7. Offer a discounted stay

It’s possible that your neighbors will end up being some of your best customers. You can offer your property at a discounted rate for when their friends and family come to stay.

This can help them maintain household harmony when guests come to stay as they won’t need to ask their warring teenagers to share a room, or make their in-laws sleep on a sofa bed. At the same time, it will help your neighbors view your short-term rental as an asset rather than a nuisance.

8. Don’t forget to think about parking

Give your guests clear guidelines on where they can and can’t park their cars. If parking is at a premium in your area, your neighbors won’t be very happy if your guests take the few available parking spots. Consider paying for a nearby car park if your property is in a city or town center with limited parking. Or you can suggest a place where your guests can safely leave their car and get public transportation to your property.

Find out what the rules are for parking on your street and tell your guests they can’t park in front of your neighbor’s driveways, or block trash cans or mailboxes. You can use street-facing security cameras to check that your guests are following the rules.

9. Trash management plan

Every residential neighborhood has its own rules and regulations about which days to take out the trash, where to leave it, and which items can be recycled.

If you provide your guests with detailed instructions on what to do, there’s a good chance they’ll respect the house rules. But it’s worth having a backup plan in case sorting and taking out the trash isn’t high on your guests’ list of priorities for their stay. 

The key to great relationships with neighbors

Strained relationships with neighbors can cause sleepless nights for everyone concerned and leave your guests feeling uncomfortable and unwelcome in your rental home.

By making it a priority to establish trust and rapport with your neighbors, you can reduce the risk of complaints and find a quick and amicable solution when problems do arise.

Better yet, you can reduce the chance of having noisy and inconsiderate guests by:

  • Screening renters
  • Setting clear house rules about parking and trash disposal
  • Using noise monitoring tools to keep a check on potential parties

With Safely’s guest screening, you’ll be able to make an informed decision about who can stay in your vacation rental properties without upsetting your neighbors.

They might even start to love your vacation rental home as much as you do.

Avoid Risky Renters with Safely’s Guest Screening

Safely’s Short-Term Rental Protection

Predictable coverage for unpredicable moments
Get A Quote
Amber is the Claims Leader at Safely and has been with the company for over four years. She manages a team of claims adjusters, working with company leadership to improve processes, maintain accurate documentation and educate team members across various departments on best practices. Before joining Safely, Amber worked as a GAP Adjuster Supervisor. Her early career includes serving as a customer service representative and unit manager at Assurant Specialty Properties as well as business operations manager at Farmers Insurance. Amber was born in Dayton, Ohio and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Finance.

Related Resources

The Role of Professional Photography in Maximizing Short-Term Rental Appeal
Property Manager Tips

The Role of Professional Photography in Maximizing Short-Term Rental Appeal

Ways to Eliminate Smoke Smell From Your Short-Term Rental Property
Property Manager Tips

Ways to Eliminate Smoke Smell From Your Short-Term Rental Property

What do Denver Short-Term Rental (STR) Laws Mean for Property Managers? [2024]
Industry Insights, Property Manager Tips

What do Denver Short-Term Rental (STR) Laws Mean for Property Managers? [2024]

Advanced Guest Screening Techniques for Property Managers
Guest Screening, Property Manager Tips

Advanced Guest Screening Techniques for Property Managers

Vrbo Damage Insurance: Comprehensive Coverage for Your Vrbo Property
Property Manager Tips, Short-Term Rental Insurance

Vrbo Damage Insurance: Comprehensive Coverage for Your Vrbo Property

Essential Maintenance Tips for Short-Term Rental Property Managers
Property Manager Tips

Essential Maintenance Tips for Short-Term Rental Property Managers

Subscribe to our articles

Loading ...