As a savvy vacationer you likely know that renting a vacation home can be much more affordable than staying in a hotel room – plus you get the added bonus of more room and more privacy! However, some people are nervous about things going wrong. The truth is that not every home rental goes well, but generally speaking when there’s a problem it’s the result of one of four problems – all of which can be prevented. Read on to learn what they are and how to avoid them.

1.         Rent a managed property

The most important thing you can do to ensure you don’t have any surprises is to rent a managed property. Too often vacationers look only for the lowest possible price without thinking about why that price is so low. Often it’s because the property is rented directly by the owner. While this may save you a few bucks, it’s also likely to lead to problems. A homeowner simply doesn’t have the resources or experience to provide the exceptional experience you’re looking for. They also don’t have much at stake if something goes wrong.

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2.         Understand the ins and outs of your rental agreement

No one wants to take the time to read contracts, yet many who rent Orlando vacation homes are surprised by extra fees, difficult cancellation processes, and other factors that are indeed included in the rental agreement. Work with an experienced property manager who can clearly outline the specifics of your rental agreement, and take the time to read that agreement. Make sure your expectations match up with the expectations of the property management company you work with.

3.         Rent with a credit card

Using a credit card versus a debit card can provide you a few extra protections. The Fair Credit Billing Act covers you in the event that you’re charged for a service or product you didn’t receive. In order to use this provision, you must notify your credit card company within 60 – 90 days (depending on the bank). Note that this option only applies to the worst possible cases in vacation rentals: a rental that was unavailable and in which you didn’t stay, or fraud. It does not cover being disappointed or dissatisfied.

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4.         Choose your own rental home

Some sites allow you to put in certain parameters but don’t allow you to actually choose the home. This can lead to expectations not being met, homes too far away from the activities you plan to enjoy, and other issues. Choose a site that lists the homes and allows you to pick a specific one. Read over the specifics carefully so you’ll know exactly what home you’re getting.

When you follow these simple four tips you’ll greatly increase the chances that you’ll get a home that makes your vacation even more exciting and relaxing!