Many owners at Hilton Head Resort do short term rentals on their own. I've
collected some suggestions and thoughts for you to consider. This is not intended to
be an exhaustive rental business plan, however it may have some ideas that you can use.
A good advertising option is your local newspaper. Local customers
simplify your ability to provide keys and passes and to make the
transaction. Look also to newspapers in nearby large cities. Many
newspapers offer online web forms to create and pay for your advertisement.
Also watch for special "travel" sections that many papers publish periodically.
Church bulletins and local bulletin boards are another option. Many
grocery stores have free bulletin boards out front.
Of course, word of mouth is often best. Give out information to friends
and family and offer a discount to all your rentals for any referrals they
get you. The goal is to build up a clientele of recurring rentals of very
trustworthy people that come back year after year. Consider a discount
coupon to this year's renters to give them extra incentive to come back
again next year.
The Hilton Head Resort website has an owner rentals section for
advertising your villa for rent. Text advertisements are free for all
owners. A picture page where you provide the pictures costs a one-time
fee of $10. If you need pictures and a virtual tour taken, the fee is $35
one-time. Check out some of the current advertisements at
for examples. http://www.hhresort.org
is advertised in several places on the internet and we get thousands of
web visits each year.
Another option is to list your villa on http://www.gotohiltonheadisland.com
This is a free service. Just click on the button "suggest a site".
http://www.hiltonheadisland.com both offer
paid listings on their websites. These are quite expensive, but may work
out for you if you have a spectactular view and exceptional villa condition.
Some owners auction their villas on the http://www.ebay.com website.
You can set a minimum starting bid and sell specific weeks that you have
available. Check it out by searching Ebay for "hilton head rental". You can
also set a "buy it now" price and use Ebay as a direct advertising tool.
You can use http://www.paypal.com to
collect credit card payments for your rentals. You pay a small transaction
fee for each credit card transaction.
The following are links to some free or inexpensive advertising
websites on the internet. These sites advertise your villa along with
thousands of others around the world. It can get you a lot of exposure
at a minimal cost. They send the leads directly to you and it is entirely
your responsibility to contact the renter and make arrangements.
This list is by no means exhaustive, if you find a new site, please
email it to me for inclusion on this list.
You can also go to google.com and do a search for "vacation rental by owner free listings"
and find many other opportunities. New websites are popping up all the time. Before
you spend any money, look and see how many rental properties this company has in
their database. The more clients they have, the more advertising money they
may have to spend.
If you get a contact from a potential renter and you are booked up, please
consider sharing the lead with the other owners via an owners mailing list. For
Hilton Head Resort owners it's easy, just email email@example.com and
provide your email address and your villa number. The mailing list is only
open to current owners at The Hilton Head Resort. Other resorts on the island
may have mailing lists, check with your webmaster or regime office.
Lastly, if this all seems like too much trouble, you may want to consider
using a rental agency. You can find information about some agencies at
They can make it easy for you.
Good luck and I hope this information has been useful to you.