Vacation Rental Glossary
Regularly updated list of commonly used short term rental terms.
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Our growing list of commonly used vacation rental terms to explain confusing acronyms or jargon you might encounter in your hosting journey.
Additional amenities that add value and drive higher rates or occupancy levels to a property. Examples include pools, hot tubs, pool tables, and sofa beds are all value-added items.
An alternative to a hotel, vacation rental refers to a private accommodation rented to travelers for a short-term stay. It usually provides a more “at home” feel as amenities include an entire furnished apartment, house, cottage, cabin, or lodge. Also called “short term rental”.
The Vacation Rental Management Association is an organization that advocates on behalf of the vacation rental industry, including education, information, networking, and research.
A potential guest
An official organization that promotes travelers a city, country, or region. Usually sponsored or funded by local businesses or government and provide information about the area.
Themed vacation rental
When a property is decorated with a specific theme, whether the entire property or a particular room.
Contribution to a property as a direct result of the labor of the owner other than simple funding.
Single Family House (SFH)
A home suited for the occupancy of one family.
Significantly Not As Described (SNAD)
When a property has significant differences when compared to the photos or description used in the original listing.
Shoulder season is the travel period between the peak (or high) season and off (or low) season for a particular property.
A property that is rented to guests for a short period of time, usually less than 30 days.
A combination of hotel and apartment where you get the luxury of extra space and comfort of home but the conveniences and services of a hotel room. It’s also called an “apart-hotel”.
Adjusting the rates charged for a vacation rental based on the period of the year.
Revenue per available room (RevPAR) is a metric used to measure the performance of a vacation rental. It is calculated by multiplying a property’s average daily room rate (ADR) by its occupancy rate.
Return On Revenue (ROR)
A performance measure used that compares the net income of a vacation rental to its revenue. It compares the amount of net income generated for each dollar of revenue generated.
Travelers who return to the same rental property after having stayed there previously.
A reservation that qualifies for a refund.
Property consisting of land or buildings.
A collection of short-term rental properties that have similar attributes and amenities.
A dwelling offered to guests as a short-term rental.
Preparation Time Before Arrival (PTBA)
The minimum amount of time a booking for a property must be made before a guest arrives. This allows hosts the required time to get a rental ready for guests.
Period of the year where travel to a particular location is in higher demand, resulting in more bookings and higher nightly rates able to be charged to guests. Also referred to as “high” season.
Overbooking refers to the practice of accepting more reservations for a property than it has available rooms or units.
When a short-term rental has been upgraded or renovated with amenities that won‚Äôt result in monetary gains.
Features on the exterior of a property that are valued by potential guests. Examples include a patio, swimming pool, outdoor kitchen or fire pit.
Empty nights in between bookings, for example when guests depart from a weekend stay, but next guests do not arrive till the following weekend.
Online Travel Agency (OTA)
Web-based marketplace that allows travelers to research and book travel services. The major agencies for short-term rentals include Airbnb and Vrbo.
see low season.
When a guest fails to arrive on their reserved booking date and without cancellation their reservation.
A building where many individual residential housing units are contained within one building.
Period of the year where travel to a particular location is in lower demand, resulting in fewer bookings or requiring lower nightly rates to entice guests to book a property. Also referred to as “off-peak” season.
The posting on a listing site such as Airbnb or Vrbo providing guests an overview of the property, usually including a description, photos, pricing, and a calendar of when it’s available to rent.
Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)
A set of quantifiable metrics that an owner or company uses to measure the performance of its investment over time. Examples can include occupancy rate, average daily rate or percentage of returning guests.
A property that requires significant reconstruction or redesign work compared to other available properties.
A mortgage with an interest rate that stays constant for an agreed period of time.
Fair Market Value (FMV)
An estimate of the market value of a property based on what a knowledgeable and willing buyer would likely pay without undue pressure.
Fair Housing Act
A federal law protecting the buyer or renter of a property from landlord discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, or national origin.
FSBO (For Sale By Owner)
When a homeowner sells a home by themselves rather than go through a realtor or company.
The legal removal of an occupant from a property.
Adjusting the price for a property to reflect differences in demand for a rental. Dynamic pricing would charge a higher nightly rate during peak tourist season, and less during periods where demand is lower.
A partial payment made by a renter at the time of booking in order to secure a reservation. This can be a fixed amount or a percentage of the total rental fee.
A double booking is when two or more guests are booked for a vacation rental for the same time period. Also referred to as overbooking.
When a traveler books directly via the property owner’s website, rather than through a third-party distribution channel such as Airbnb or Vrbo.
Depth of inventory
The number of similar properties available to rent in a specific area.
The standard base rental rate for a property. This rate would be adjusted for variations in demand such as tourist seasons or weekend stays.
Improvements to a property that primarily benefit the look & feel. Examples could include new flooring, painting, or lighting.
A condo building that offers services like a hotel. For example a concierge, room service, or gym facilities.
A building or grouping of properties with multiple units for rent.
A list of rental properties that can be seen as competitors to a property because they are similar in size, amenities, and price, and attract a common demographic. Comparing against their competitive set can help property owners make their own offering more competitive.
Comparative Market Analysis
A report created to view comparable homes in an area that is used to estimate a fair value for a property.
Glossary terms are provided by the community to provide a quick reference for short term rental owners.
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