Archive for the ‘Cottage Owners’ Category

Making Your Cottage Guests Feel Welcome

Thursday, May 5th, 2016
Pin It

First impressions count and here at Sykes Cottages, we want to help you make the best first impression possible when new customers arrive at your holiday let. From a friendly welcome to a cup of tea, we’ve listed some basics below that are sure to make your guest feel welcome on arrival.

A warm welcome awaits guests at Springle Barn (Ref. 5469) in Monyash

A warm welcome awaits guests at Springle Barn (Ref. 5469) in Monyash

Provide a warm welcome

If you’re around to greet your guests in person then this is a great opportunity to make them feel welcome – a smile and friendly handshake can go a long way! If you’re not able to greet your guests in person then never underestimate the power of a handwritten note. Providing a small handwritten welcome in your cottage is a lovely touch and lets your guests know that you care about their stay.

Introduce the property

Make sure your guests get the most from their stay by providing them with a little back ground information on the property, how long you’ve had it and its best features – this works especially well if your holiday let is older or has an interesting history. The property’s introduction can be done in person when your guests arrive or as part of your welcome pack in the cottage.

Welcome basket at Yate Cottage (Ref. 913883) in Oxenhope

Welcome basket at Yate Cottage (Ref. 913883) in Oxenhope

Stock up on the basics

An easy way to make your guests feel welcome is to provide a few basics like tea bags, milk and sugar so your guests can have a nice cup of tea after their journey. Cooking essentials like salt, pepper and cooking oil are common items you’d find in your own home but may forget to take to a holiday let, so don’t forget to provide these for your guests. These homely touches will go a long way in making your guests feel comfortable.

Little extras

As well as the basics, you may want to look at included some little extras to make your guests feel special on arrival. A bunch of fresh flowers in the property or a nice cake can really impress your visitors and encourage them to share their experience at your cottage with others, increasing word of mouth and encouraging new potential customers.

A little dog made feel very welcome at Greenway (Ref. 930748) in Kilve.

A little dog made feel very welcome at Greenway (Ref. 930748) in Kilve.

Consider the whole party

Children and pets can often be overlooked as we try to please the adults, but taking the time to point out any child friendly attractions or good dog walking routes can really help your guests feel welcome. For an extra special touch, try leaving out some games for children or a dog toy ready for your guests’ arrival.

A guide to the local area

Providing your guests with expert knowledge of the area like where to eat and local days out will let your guests know that you care about their stay. Try to including include this information in your welcome pack or let your visitors know that they can contact you for advice on places to visit and restaurants to eat at during their stay. Make sure to avoid telling your guests what they can’t do in the area and focus on the things they can do.

And there you have it, our guide to making your guests feel welcome. Have you tried any of these tips? If so did they work? Let us know by leaving a comment on our Facebook or Twitter page.

Pin It
nicole.westley

By Nicole Westley

As a food lover Nicole can often be found in the kitchen, covered in flour and experimenting with new tastes! When not making a mess she loves to explore her Celtic roots by roaming the Scottish countryside or exploring the bays along the Anglesey coast with her fiancé.

Check Out Our New Let Your Cottage Page

Wednesday, April 13th, 2016
Pin It

Over the past few weeks we’ve been working hard to improve our Let Your Cottage page and we are pleased to say it’s now ready to explore! With its snazzy new look, our Let Your Cottage page is dedicated to providing holiday cottage owners with the information they need to successfully let their property.

LYC Main

On the new home page, owners will find all the information they need about letting your property with Sykes Cottages; from our marketing strategy right down to the people you’ll be working with. The new website even has a handy estimator so you can see how much you could earn when letting your property with Sykes.

Everything you need to know about holiday lettings

LYC Info

As well as a new look, the website has also been packed full of useful information! You’ll find advice on a variety of holiday letting topics including investment advice, legal regulations, advertising and marketing, and even tax information! We’ve made it so that everything you need to know about holiday lettings can now be found in one easily accessible place.

Expert advice on your local area

LYC Region

Own a holiday let in the South West? How about a Peak District cottage? Wherever your property is located, Sykes Cottages will have a local expert on hand to offer you advice. By visiting your region-specific pages, you can get to know the Sykes Expert in your area and take a look at some of our existing properties nearby. These pages also provide another opportunity to use our estimator and find out how much you could earn with Sykes based on historical booking data.

We hope you enjoy exploring our new Let Your Cottage page and if you have any questions regarding holiday lets in the UK then please feel free to give our team a call on 01244 356695.

Pin It
nicole.westley

By Nicole Westley

As a food lover Nicole can often be found in the kitchen, covered in flour and experimenting with new tastes! When not making a mess she loves to explore her Celtic roots by roaming the Scottish countryside or exploring the bays along the Anglesey coast with her fiancé.

Refresh Your Holiday Cottage For 2016

Friday, January 8th, 2016
Pin It

So the first week of January has already been and gone – how time flies eh? And this means we’ll be back in the peak season for holiday cottages before you know it, so we’ve been doing some thinking about what you can do to refresh your cottage for the New Year. So if you think that your holiday home could do with a bit of a spruce for guests in 2016, take a look and see what you think.

The Kitchen

Now is a great time to take a look through the kitchen and see what might need replacing. It’s inevitable that there will be a few accidents and breakages and some crockery will have gone missing, but have you checked for cracks and chips in all of your plates and mugs?

Then there are the appliances. You’ll want to have a check of all of the appliances in the kitchen and make sure that they’re in working order, from the toaster all the way through to the oven. And you might want to take the chance to replace things like tea towels and oven gloves that might have got a bit stained over the course of 2015.

The Bedroom

And what about the bedroom? Well the of course the easiest place to start is with the bedding. You’ll want to have a quick check and make sure that none of the bedding is too tired looking and maybe even invest in some new sets if you think it might be necessary – remember you’ve got the January sales to take advantage of!

The Living Areas

Now the living areas are probably where your guests are going to spending the most amount of time during their stay, so you want them looking spick and span! Tasks here can range from making sure that everything is shipshape with the soft furnishings, all the way through to making sure that the information pack (if your cottage has one) is fully to up to date with all the best events and attractions for the year ahead.

Hopefully you’ll find this useful when it comes to getting your cottage ready and raring to go for 2016, but we may well have missed a few things out. So if you know of any little tricks of the trade that you think you fellow cottage owners might be able to use then do let us know and we’ll pass it on!

Pin It
Jamie Tomkins

By Jamie Tomkins

Jamie is a big fan of long weekend walks with the dog, especially when there is the chance to refuel with lunch in a country pub. Living in Lancaster for three years gave him the perfect opportunity to spend a lot of time in the Lake District.

How To Make Your Cottage More Festive

Thursday, December 17th, 2015
Pin It

Today on the Sykes blog we’re taking a look at Christmas from a cottage owner’s point of view. It’s always a busy time of year for holiday lets thanks to the countless large family get-togethers and people looking for a quiet break over the hectic festive period. But one thing that might cause a bit of confusion is whether or not you should decorate your cottage. Here at Sykes HQ, we’d always says that it’s a nice idea to have some bits and pieces handy for the holiday period so that your cottage has that festive feel, ready for when your guests arrive.

Welcome Pack

One thing that quite a lot of owners will do throughout the year is leave a welcome pack ready for their new guests. Normally, they’ll contain some essentials such as milk and eggs, but some owners go the whole hog and leave the odd treat in the pack ranging from a bottle of wine through to some cake or chocolates. So over the Christmas period, why don’t you have a think of adding in a Christmas card, some mince pies or maybe even a few Christmas crackers?

Decorations

Of course, decorations are always a nice touch over the festive period but it’s probably best not to go overboard with it all. You want to keep them so that it’s relatively easy to take them down and put them back up depending on your guests’ preferences, which could differ from booking to booking.

The Tree

And of course there’s the pièce de résistance – the tree! Let’s be honest, no set of Christmas decorations would be complete without a tree but what would be suitable for a holiday let? Well you might want to have a think about an artificial tree, there won’t be the same problems with dropping needles and the clean up afterwards will be easier. And what’s more you can keep hold of it to use again the next year!

So there you go, a few little hints and tips on how you can make your cottages a touch more festive this Christmas. However, we would strongly advise checking with the guests before you put anything up, just to make sure that they’d want the decorations up. Remember to keep your eyes open for more helpful pointers for cottage owners.

Pin It
Jamie Tomkins

By Jamie Tomkins

Jamie is a big fan of long weekend walks with the dog, especially when there is the chance to refuel with lunch in a country pub. Living in Lancaster for three years gave him the perfect opportunity to spend a lot of time in the Lake District.

Essential Items for Your Cottage Kitchen

Sunday, August 30th, 2015
Pin It

Today the Sykes Cottages blog sees a post specifically for cottage owners as we take a look at one of the most important rooms in a holiday let, the kitchen. We’ll be considering which items you should make sure your cottage is well stocked with so that your guests won’t be left wanting for anything. Take a look and see what you think!

Cutlery and Crockery

Let’s start off with the obvious one shall we? All of the kitchens in our holiday cottages need to have enough cutlery to match their maximum occupancy, however we’d suggest having a few more sets of each item just to make sure. We’d also suggest that our family friendly properties come prepared for visits from the little ones with some smaller plastic sets, just in case the parents forget to bring them along.

With regards to crockery, sets of plates both big and small, should be provided, as should bowls. Then you’ll want to stock up on wine glasses, ordinary glasses and mugs as you’re bound to have a few breakages here and there. Again if your cottage is advertised as family friendly, we’d suggest getting in some plastic beakers and plates just in case.

Utensils

Then there’s the utensils. The easiest way to think about these is to consider what you use in your own home in day to day life. So for example tongs, graters, sieves and tin openers etc should all be a given. Then you’ve got things like pizza wheels and garlic crushers that you might not think of at first but will certainly come in handy. One good way to make sure that you have everything that you’d need is to spend a few nights in the cottage yourself and see if you miss anything whilst you’re there. Make sure you leave a good set of kitchen knives and a sharpener in the property so that they don’t get too blunt.

Cookware

With regards to the cookware, a good set of saucepans (and lids) in various sizes will always go down well, as will set of frying pans. You should also make sure that there are a few baking trays ready for your guests to use and a casserole dish will certainly be well received during the colder months.

Hopefully you’ll find this to be useful when you’re kitting out your holiday cottage’s kitchen, but let us know if you think of any items that are regularly forgotten about. Or alternatively if you would be interested in finding out a little bit more about joining Sykes as an owner, take a look at the Let Your Cottage section of our website and request a free information pack or call up our Owners Department on 01244 356666

Pin It
Jamie Tomkins

By Jamie Tomkins

Jamie is a big fan of long weekend walks with the dog, especially when there is the chance to refuel with lunch in a country pub. Living in Lancaster for three years gave him the perfect opportunity to spend a lot of time in the Lake District.