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The summer is here, even if sometimes the weather makes us question that, and people are beginning to think about their holidays. The same can be said for the letting market. Every year lots of landlords make the switch between the long lets that calmly keep the property occupied during the year to a manic few months of holiday letting during the summer months.
Edinburgh is certainly an ideal city for holiday lets with over 4 million visitors a year. If you’re switching between long and short lets, the festival provides a fantastic annual, seasonal opportunity that can be incredibly lucrative if done right. But the tourists aren’t just here for the summer and many forget that the holiday let market can be run all year round. Of course the festival is often what Edinburgh is known for in touristic circles, but did you know there are actually 12 festivals that occur in Edinburgh? These include: Edinburgh International Festival, Edinburgh International Science Festival, International Film Festival, International Book Festival, the Edinburgh Military Tattoo, Edinburgh’s Christmas and Hogmanay and not to mention the Fringe Festival, often simply dubbed ‘the Festival’. With an estimated spend of £1.32 billion in 2014*, there’s certainly the audience there for the right kind of holiday let experience.
So how do you know if your property is right for holiday lets?
As a general rule, anywhere within 20 minutes of Princes Street will most likely be popular. People want centrally located holiday apartments with good transport links and in a nice area. Edinburgh is such a small city with a thriving property market so guests looking for their ideal holiday spot will be quick to dismiss properties that are too far from the centre. Barring a central location, guests expect a good level of presentation and basic amenities provided as standard with any holiday let. If you want to go for that something extra, many holiday let landlords are providing gift baskets and toiletries to their guests to stand out in the busy market.
It’s also important to consider whether you want to a) seasonally switch between long and short lets or b) run short lets all year round.
If you’re switching between the two, the key thing is to be prepared well in advance. Have a locked cupboard in the property or other storage space where you have everything you need ready to go. You’ll want to have good marketing photos taken as well, ideally without tenants things in there! Last minute check-out emergencies inevitably arise, so it’s also good to have a reliable cleaner and handyman on standby for those quick little jobs.
If you’re running holidaylets all year, there is the potential to make several times the annual rent of a long let – but you have to do it right. Taking the time to make sure your system is fool proof but flexible enough to accommodate a wide range of guests is essential, as are having the key local contacts in place who can reliably and consistently help you manage your property. You also need to consider where to advertise for the property you have, Airbnb may not always be the right fit for everyone, the same can be said of Tripadvisor. Doing your research first and thoroughly will save you time and hassle in the long run.
On the other hand, if you’ve been interested in any kind of holiday let but aren’t sure where to start or don’t want to manage the considerable work it takes on your own, Dunpark offers a totally flexible holiday let service. We can do everything from taking quality marketing photos of your property to managing your entire holiday let account all year round on all of the major portals including Airbnb, Tripadvisor and Owners Direct. We can organise gift baskets for your guests should you wish, using a great range of locally sourced products and we compile professional welcome books containing all the information your guests need for their stay.
Even if you are thinking of letting your property for the festival next year, get in touch with us now and we can help you start to plan the best way to get a healthy investment return boost from your property (not to mention giving people a wonderful holiday experience!).