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So, you’re thinking about advertising your holiday home. Finding the right agency for your property is paramount to its success and earning potential, and with the recent UK staycation boom now has never been a better time to consider a holiday let investment.

Here are some things to consider when trying to choose the best holiday cottage agent.

Things to know before deciding on a holiday let agency

From Cornwall to Anglesey, setting up your very first holiday let business is an exciting venture. Owning a holiday let can be highly rewarding, but it brings its fair share of challenges too. Working with the right agent for expert advice and support can make all the difference to help you achieve holiday let success  – so what should you look for?

Holiday let agency fees

The idea of starting your own holiday let and taking on extra responsibilities may seem daunting at first. Working with a holiday letting agency, such as Sykes, can help ease the pressure by looking after everything from finding the right property to managing bookings, payments and marketing. When choosing a management company, there are three types of holiday let agency fees you may be charged:

  • Commission rates
  • Setup fees
  • Annual fees

Factoring in the costs of running a holiday let can help you stay on top of your budget and avoid running into any unexpected expenses. Holiday let agencies typically take a percentage for each booking in exchange for their services. Commission rates can vary between 15% to 25% depending on whether they include additional services such as marketing, administration, property management, changeover and laundry.

Keep in mind that when it comes to holiday let agents, you usually get what you pay for. Those charging a higher commission are likely to offer a wider range of services to help maximise your holiday rental income. At Sykes Holiday Cottages, our services can be tailored for your requirements as part of our holiday let management costs.

Do you need a fully or partially managed service?

Depending on the level of support you need from your holiday letting agent, we offer both fully managed and partially managed services. Our fully managed service includes a comprehensive package of holiday let cleaning, housekeeping, laundry service and key collection. If you would rather be more hands-on with your property, you can opt for our partially managed service, which works well if you live near your holiday home. Whatever you choose, we have a tailored holiday home management solution to suit your needs.

Holiday let management agencies may also include a one-off setup fee to help get your holiday home up and running. This can range from £100-£250, and may include marketing services such as professional photography, advertising the property online and allowing bookings through third party sites. Holiday agents can also include an annual fee in their services to cover funding for the general upkeep of your cottage listing, which may be up to £100 per year.

When shopping around for agency fees, it’s always a good idea to call up different agencies and compare rates so that you achieve the best return on investment for your holiday home.

If you’re looking for more information on letting your cottage, you can find out more in our guide to buying a holiday let.

What to expect when hiring a holiday management agency

Depending on whether you plan to use the property yourself or solely as an additional income source, your expectations may vary. When choosing a holiday let agency, weighing up the pros and cons of a holiday let management company can help make your experience as stress-free as possible. For example, you want to work with an agent who offers flexibility if you’re planning to use the property on weekends.

Working with Sykes gives you the benefit of our in-house Managed Services team, giving you peace of mind when it comes to maintaining your holiday let. If you’re looking to run your holiday cottage business primarily to generate income, it’s important to stay vigilant of agents who make lofty claims and false promises for booking requests.

More than anything, work with an agent you feel comfortable with is key. A strong relationship between agent and owner is essential for running a successful holiday let, and Sykes Cottages’ 30-year industry expertise, reputation and longstanding relationships with clientele demonstrate the effectiveness of this rapport.

Finding a holiday home letting agency with knowledge of the local area

Location is one of the biggest factors to consider when looking for the right holiday letting agent. Cottage letting agencies can vary in their knowledge depending on the region your property is in, so it is important to consider the location of your holiday let, and whether the agent can help effectively with marketing, servicing and managing bookings.

If the agency has other properties in your area, they may be able to offer local knowledge on marketing your holiday home or tailored advice for low season holiday let bookings.

At Sykes, we have an established presence with more than 17,000 UK properties nationwide, giving us a robust network of trusted experts in holiday letting to help generate more bookings and revenue for you. Our dedicated team of property consultants and regional managers can provide local knowledge of popular UK tourist attractions and helpful tips for holiday letting.

Read our blog post on the 10 best places to buy a holiday home in the UK for more inspiration.

Marketing your property

When advertising your second home to potential customers, you want your property to stand out from the crowd. With increasing demand for staycations across the UK and an influx of quirky holiday lets, competition is at an all-time high and effective marketing is more important than ever.

Working with an experienced holiday let agency can help show your cottage at its best via property listings, social media exposure, search marketing, paid advertising, analytics and professional photographs. Your letting agent should be able to highlight your properties unique features and advise on how best to advertise your holiday home.

Reputation of your chosen holiday let agent

Another factor to consider is looking at the agent’s track record for letting holiday homes. Most reputable agencies will be happy to provide references and reviews from other property owners to demonstrate their credibility. When finding the best holiday let agency, you want to ask questions such as:

  • How many years has the agency been in business?
  • Have other holiday let owners used them?
  • What is their client base like?
  • Do they have any reviews?
  • Are they growing?

Researching the holiday home agent on review sites like Trustpilot and whether they have won or been shortlisted for any awards can help you make an informed decision.

Sykes has a strong track record in the industry having received recognition for a range of accolades including the Northern Tech Awards and 1000 Companies To Inspire Britain, as well as holding the prestigious ‘Best Large UK Holiday Cottage Company’ title in the British Travel Awards for eight years in a row.

Looking for more information on starting a holiday let? Read a more detailed summary in our blog on how to start a holiday let business.

Let your property with Sykes and earn up to £125,000 per year*

  • Join over 15,000 holiday properties already working with Sykes Cottages
  • We welcome over 26 million web visitors a year
  • Many of our owners achieve more than 45 bookings a year
  • We specialise in turning your holiday property into a profitable year-round income for you

*Based on a 7 bedroom property in the Lake District with bookings between October 2017 to September 2018.

holiday let owner pack

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