Whether you own a cabin or are looking to purchase one, starting a cabin rental business can be a very lucrative endeavor. Over 100,000 people search specifically for “cabin rentals” each month on local searches. This is a growing trend as more people are looking to getaway and unplug. That being said, here are the steps to starting a cabin rental business.
How to start a cabin rental:
Decide why you want to start a cabin rental business.
This may seem obvious at first but this is a business. Before you start a cabin rental business you must decide what your goals are. Are you trying to make extra money on a seasonal cabin? Are you trying to offset the cost of a new build or purchased log home? Or perhaps you are looking to scale it into a large operations with multiple cabins. Depending on your goals, your approach may be different. Make sure you know why you are doing this.
Create a business plan.
Once you know why you want to start a cabin rental business, put it on paper. Write your goals down and steps on how you plan to get there. Do the math and make sure it makes sense. Even a short business plan can force you to ask the right questions that may save you in the end.
Acquire a cabin or log home.
If you already have a log home then you can skip this step. For people who don’t have a cabin or log home, then there are a few things you may want to consider. The location is the going to be the most important thing to consider. Some destinations are more popular than others. Do your research and make sure that people will want to stay there. The more sought after a destination is… the less you have to market it and the easier it is to fill. You also have the option to build a cabin or purchase one. A new build will most likely last longer. For buying check-out Cabin Dreamers listings. For building we recommend checking out Lok N Logs custom log homes.
Setup your cabin to be rented.
Before you rent your cabin out, you will want to remove any valuables or dangerous items. This includes guns, family heirlooms, pictures of your family, and more. You will also want to make sure that your cabin is in safe conditions for your guests. The more you do… the safer you and your guests are. Once your cabin is safe, you will want to purchase extra sheets and pillows to make sure you can quickly change them for back-to-back bookings.
Get insurance for your rental.
If you already have insurance it is a good idea to call them and make sure they cover vacation rental guests. Not all insurance providers will be okay with this or will cover rentals. Insurance will give you peace of mind while you run your business and protect both you, your guests, and your cabin.
Set rules and a check-in system.
Setting clear rules will help protect you from conflict down the road. Create a rules sheet that is very clear and include your rules list on your listings. Make sure you know what your insurance covers. For example your insurance company may say no pets. Once you have your rules, make sure you create a check-in system. Smart locks are a great option that allows you to change and set the code remotely.
List your cabin.
If you are going to hire a rental management company, they will do this for you. It is important to list your rental on as many places as possible. The more places you list your cabin rental, the more exposure your listing has. When listing be sure to choose high quality pictures, a price that is fair and competitive, and a description that is not robotic. Airbnb and Vrbo are the top places to list your rental for bookings. You can also list your rental on free sites like Cabin Dreamers and Facebook. We also recommend creating your own website or having one created for you. HostZily is a great website for choosing a domain and having them create/maintain your website. There are many great booking systems that allow you to connect them all.
Promote your rental.
Once you have your cabin rental up and running, you will want to promote it. The quickest way is to post it on as many free websites as possible like cabindreamers.com, craigslist, facebook marketplace, and more. Another good idea is to create social media accounts for your cabin to promote the area. Reviews are another great marketing tool. Encourage people to leave good reviews across the web to promote your cabin rental. If you really need a boost try paid ads.
Once your cabin rental business is up and running, it is important to learn and do a good job. The better job you do the more you will standout. Reviews go a long way in any business. Do you have any tips? Share with the community in the comments!