You may already know how to attract business travelers to your rental for a short stay, but what about when it comes to the longer visits?
Corporate housing has long been an established solution for businesses and their traveling employees. It offers many more advantages and comforts than the traditional hotel stay, and can often work out more economical for the company in question.
That said, it’s not just business travelers and companies who benefit from these services. There are also a number of ways that vacation rental owners can reap the rewards when using their properties as corporate housing solutions.
Above all, offering your vacation property as corporate housing can help double or even triple your rental profits.
Let’s take a look at what corporate housing is and how you can boost your vacation rental income with it!
What is corporate housing?
Corporate housing is a frequently used term in the travel industry which refers to the rental of fully furnished apartments and homes to businesses and other professionals. Corporate housing may sometimes be referred to as serviced or executive apartments, and rates for corporate housing usually include all utilities such as water, electricity and gas.
As with vacation rentals, this segment of the travel industry has also seen a massive growth in the last 20 years. In 2015, the total revenue for corporate housing in the US market was in the realm of $2.93 billion.
How can you offer your vacation rental as corporate housing?
Many vacation rental owners in certain areas may find it difficult to get off-season bookings. However, pitching your property as a corporate housing solution can be a great idea to combat the shoulder season decline.
What should you bear in mind when advertising your vacation rental as a serviced apartment?
Get the price right
The key to making big money through corporate housing lies in your property’s competitive prices. To begin, do some research and find out what the average hotel room nightly rate is in your area – this is your benchmark. Bear in mind that corporate housing is usually 40-50% cheaper than a hotel.
If a hotel works out at $150 per person per night, then set your prices that bit lower – e.g. $80 per person. Not only would a two-bedroom apartment still have a huge earning potential (at least $4,800 per month), but it would also be a lot more attractive for a company’s financial team when doing their budget calculations.
Given that the average corporate housing stay in the US in 2015 was 84 nights, this solution can save companies thousands when compared to hotels – without having to scrimp on any luxuries.
Additionally, companies will have even fewer expenses to pay when their employees can cook at home in a fully furnished kitchen, park on site for no additional cost and even do laundry at their leisure.
Provide high quality amenities
When catering to business clients, worn out furniture and old appliances simply won’t cut it. Adding luxury amenities to your vacation rental can easily help make it suitable for the corporate housing category. But don’t worry – the return on these investments will more than make it worth it when you can bump up the nightly price to fit.
Corporate housing candidates are looking for, at the very least: quality furniture and furnishings; brand name household appliances and white goods; large televisions with cable or entertainment packages; high-speed internet connections; well-stocked, modern kitchens with coffee machines; cleaning and maintenance teams on hand for any issues.
When you add fluffy hotel-quality towels and robes, top thread count Egyptian cotton bed linens and a whole supply of toiletries to see them through their stay, you’re easily matching – if not exceeding – the hotel experience. This will ensure a memorable stay and possibly even convince a repeat business visit.
Offer additional services
To really make your property stand out to the corporate travel contingent, go one step further and offer additional services at rates that a hotel can’t compete with.
Whether that’s a chauffeur service, daily cleaning and laundry or an in-house personal chef, vacation rental owners can use this as a further opportunity to boost their income.
Furthermore, many vacation rental complexes or private properties will have their own facilities – such as on-site gyms, swimming pools or bicycle rental – which you could also advertise as an added extra.
Make the corporate guests feel at home
The home-away-from-home environment is one of the top reasons more and more long-stay business travelers are opting for corporate housing.
In particular, when employees are relocating to a new city, staying in a desirable location amongst locals can help them (and possibly their families) to make the right decision about where they will live eventually. Currently, almost 40% of corporate housing rental needs come from employee relocations.
As your property is a vacation rental, you’ll already have the location factor ticked off. But you can still do checks to make sure it has everything else needed for a comfortable stay. That means comfortable (and new) mattresses; extra pillows, duvets and sheets; enough crockery for everybody; a selection of plasticware in case of little ones; fans and air conditioning units; as well as fully stocked kitchen essentials such as spices and oils, pots and pans and so on!
Offering your vacation rental as corporate housing is an original way to keep bookings high in the low season, injecting income when you need it most! Have you ever hosted corporate travelers? Tell us more about your experience in the comments!