Children. Those noisy little customers who pay nothing but strongly influence their parent’s decision to rent your property. Family travel is the fastest growing niche in the leisure travel economy. If intuitively harnessed, the family niche can be a great source of income for your Orlando vacation rental property.
Coming to think of it, it is hard for families to pass up all that extra space and amenities that would keep their children busy during the vacation times.
That is why the search filters on vacation rental management websites include the Family friendly’ section to appeal to families traveling with children.
Families make up a large customer base for vacation homes as it is estimated that 87% of families take at least one vacation per year. The challenge for vacation rental owners in a vacation area like Orlando is to focus their listings and home upgrades on kid-friendly features.
Before you embark on the fix-ups to make your rental more child-friendly, first look at what different groups of children need:
• Kids: It’s all about exciting games and fun with this group. If they are happy and entertained, trust that their parents will be too.
• Toddlers: they’re always moving and trying out new things. Safety is a major concern for their parents since the toddler doesn’t know better.
• Babies: This is a more manageable group as they do not need entertainment or serious safety precautions. What the parent needs is a clean place where they can prepare the baby’s meal and conducive house temperatures.
Your house can be the perfect vacation destination for a family that has plenty of kids. You just need to refurbish and recondition your house to make it more family friendly. Here’s how you do it:
Your home should be a place where the parents can ditch their worries and have a nice time to relax. Their children should roam around your house freely and not risk falling down the stairs or getting stuck in the toilet. No parent wants to follow their child around like a tornado, especially during the vacation.
Start by putting away all the fragile pieces that you have like antique vases. Put up safety gates on the staircases and put an adjustable lock on all the toilet seats. Finally, if you have a pool, ensure that it has a pool fence. A pool fence will go a long way to protected young kids from the pool when you are not looking.
The parent will be able to relax and bask in the warm Orlando climate if they know that their child is safe.
Boost your Security Features
Safety is the number one concern in property management and a priority for Orlando vacationers. Install a good security system to address your guest’s fears. No parent wants to risk having their children nabbed in a vacation home in Orlando. So hook your rental up with electronic locks, surveillance cameras, glass shatter alarms, motion detectors and gate sensors.
The best part is that the security systems come in DIY kits so you can easily set them up yourself.
Add a Play Area
Kids love it when they have enough space to play. The play space could be in the backyard and you could decorate the floor with plenty of colors to make it more attractive. The play space could include simple things like a playhouse, a swing set, sandbox or an entire play-set.
If you want to cut the cost of installing a new play area, you can simply kick it up with your landscaping. Ensure that your grass is long and healthy so that kids can run and play in it without getting hurt.
Plant trees as they could provide great climbing areas for children and they can also play hide and seek.
Please note that many parents do not like backyards with hardscaping. Concrete or paving stones are hazards to children and many parents will avoid booking such houses. Instead, consider installing soft surfaces that are safe for kids such as carpets or rubber crumb playgrounds.
Children appreciate having something to occupy them especially when the adults are having grown-up’ time. Make sure the rental has something that can entertain the kids and ensure it involves the latest technology.
Here are a few ideas you can run with:
• Wi-Fi: Because children need to access their social media accounts or watch YouTube videos on their phones from time to time.
• Game Rooms: An air-conditioned room that includes a ping-pong or pool table, large flat screen TC, DVD players or table football.
• Game Consoles: PS2/PS3 or Wii game consoles or an X-Box.
• In-house DVD Library: Set up a wide selection of the latest movies that children can choose from.
• DVD Players and Flat Screen TVs: Set them up in the bedrooms and living rooms.
Stock Big Items
Families traveling with children find it difficult to pack big items that are necessary for the children’s travel experience. Sometimes, the parents just forget to pack them and end up having a bad vacation experience and eventually, incur extra costs of buying new items.
You can make life easier for them by stocking up cribs, high chairs, bikes, bottle warmers/sterilizers, changing pad/ table, a mini food processor or strollers.
As a special amenity in your dining area for toddlers, you can include booster chairs for the dining table or a step stool.
For the rest of the house, stock up toddler books and toys, baby seats, baby blankets/sheets, non-slip bath mats and kids helmets and pumps.
Add Some Special amenities
If you do not have a pool in your Orlando home, this may be a good time to invest in one. The kids will want to have a quick dip after running around in the sunny Orlando weather. If you deem that to be too expensive, you can buy an inflatable kiddie pool and put it away when the kids are gone.
For families with babies, you should redecorate your kitchen to make it more family friendly. Add a cooking oven because the families will want to have a few home cooked meals for the children.
Increase the number of seats in your living room to cater for children in big families that would want to sit together.
Finally- Spruce up your listing
Add that it’s child-friendly’ to the listing to VRBO and Homeaway. Include a couple of pictures of the special amenities that you have and, make them as colorful as possible.
Remember that the children are also looking.
You can ask your Orlando property management or vacation rental management company to explain how the security system works to your clients if you are not there for the showing. If you can, leave a user manual on how to use some of the gaming consoles.
As a bonus, leave a map of the best children friendly’ destinations to visit in Orlando. The children will thank you later.