Just like the vacation rental industry, the pet-friendly travel sector is growing rapidly. Consider this: about 44% of American households include a dog. According to travel industry research reported by Skift, more than half of these families will only stay in dog-friendly lodging. And, they regularly cut vacations short—or skip them altogether—because traveling with pets is a challenge.
Your vacation rental could be the solution. Learn more in our handy Q&A!
Q: Why should I make my vacation home pet-friendly?
A: You’ll make more money!
Owning a pet-friendly home can do wonders for your wallet, and our data proves it. Currently, about one-third of our approximately 6,000 homes are dog-friendly, and consistently book at a higher rate and earn greater returns than their pet-free counterparts.
In 2016, Vacasa homes that allowed dogs earned an average of $31,903 in revenue from 35.2 bookings. Homes that didn’t allow dogs earned $25,381 in revenue from 24.7 bookings. That’s more than 10 bookings worth $6,500, just for being dog-friendly. (Note that dogs are the only pets currently permitted in Vacasa homes.)
Q: Why do pet-friendly rentals make more money?
A: They have greater visibility!
When looking for the perfect getaway for the whole family, travelers tend to filter their vacation searches by checking that “Pet-Friendly” box. If your home doesn’t allow pets, you’re out of the running before those potential guests have seen a single photo.
Dog-friendly homes may also attract more repeat guests who take yearly trips with their pups. Finding a good rental that accommodates dogs isn’t easy—so dog owners are likely to come back to that home instead of scouring listings for other options.
Q: Won’t dogs make more messes?
A: Occasionally, but…
Most housekeepers are well-trained to clean up after pets, and charging a small nightly fee will usually cover any extra time or supplies.
Additionally, you can set your own pet policy, giving you peace of mind while you make more revenue. Clearly specify any size limitations, rules for behavior, and breed restrictions you feel necessary.
Q: OK, I’m convinced. How do I make my home pet-friendly?
A: Take advantage of your home’s built-in dog-friendly amenities.
Highlight your home’s natural dog-friendliness in your rental listing’s description and photos. Showcase your fenced-in backyard where a dog can play fetch, or the sunny porch where all your guests can lounge in the sun. If your home is near hiking trails, a beach, parks, lakes, or streams, simply allowing dogs may be the key to opening your home up to more bookings year-round.
Even if your home is located in an urban area, simple touches like adding a set of dog dishes or a jar of treats go a long way towards making the whole family feel welcome.
Best of all? Allowing pets in your rental doesn’t cost you a dime! It’s one of the easiest investments to make in your rental’s success. You can always try out your new policy, and if you don’t see a boost in bookings, go back to being pet-free if you wish. (Just make sure to update your listings accordingly, and honor the policies in place when guests booked their reservation.)