After managing long-term rentals, Josh and his wife were ready to invest in a vacation home they could call their own. In Josh's own words, here’s how Vacasa helped bring the couple's unique Swiss-chalet style to life, and lets them share it with every guest that walks through the door.
"My wife and I own a few long-term rental properties, but Swiss Haus is our first vacation rental. We decided to branch out into short-term rentals for two reasons: We wanted to diversify our portfolio, and we wanted a space we could use for ourselves. We also loved the creative opportunity that came with owning a vacation home.
With long-term rentals, they're not really your own. Managing them is fairly hands-off, and you have no control—you’re just looking at the numbers. With a vacation rental, you can turn it into your own creative project. Having a place we could decorate in our style, rent to others, and stay in from time to time was very appealing to us."
"We had just come back from a trip to Switzerland when we started looking for vacation homes. In the Swiss Alps, we fell in love with the old, chalet-style homes. They have a rustic feel that’s really romantic, warm, and inviting. So, when our realtor showed us a Swiss-style chalet in Government Camp, we knew it was the one.
As soon as we saw the home, our creative juices started flowing. We loved the idea of bringing an international feel to the Pacific Northwest. Even though the house is only an hour outside of Portland, it feels like you’re on a Swiss excursion when you’re there."
"I knew right away that I wanted to work with a property manager. Long-term rentals are very hands-off, but short-term rentals are more like running a hotel. My wife and I knew we couldn’t manage the home ourselves, especially since we don’t live in the area full-time. We wanted this home to be a creative outlet and an escape from stress—not a source of it.
After looking at a few different property management companies, we landed on Vacasa. The reviews were excellent, and they came strongly recommended. Our number one priority was finding a company we trusted, especially when we couldn’t be there ourselves."
"Working with Vacasa has been a collaborative effort. They gave us some really helpful tips for attracting guests. For example, they suggested adding a feature wall to showcase our Swiss memorabilia, getting a game console for kids, and putting a foosball table upstairs. But we had full control of decorating.
Our home is a creative outlet for us, and we had a ton of fun decorating with our Swiss theme. We used a lot of red tones inside, hung a painting of Zermatt, and even added an authentic Swiss cuckoo clock. We also put flags around the deck, mirroring a traditional Swiss chalet. It means so much to us, having a place to keep those memories alive."
"My wife and I have been really happy with Vacasa so far. Knowing that we can rely on a professional, local team has made us worry less about our home. Our local manager, Chris, has been fantastic. He’s a great communicator, which is key in a partnership like this one. My schedule makes phone calls and emails difficult, so Chris has started texting me when he needs something. He’s very flexible and accommodating.
When we bought the home, I was prepared for a lot of wear and tear. With multiple guests in and out of the house on a monthly basis, you kind of expect it. Considering the number of people who have stayed there, I’m surprised that I haven’t seen any.
I attribute the quality care to Chris and the local Vacasa team. They’ve been keeping everything going for us and we haven’t had any damage. My theory is that when guests walk into a pristine property, they respect and appreciate it, making them more likely to leave it in the same condition."
"Chris also suggested Vacasa’s linen and terry program to us, and it makes a whole lot of sense. We need to replace the linens yearly anyway, so having Vacasa take care of it is one less thing we have to do. We’ve noticed that the guest turnover process is handled really well.
Chris and I talk a lot about the guest experience. We like to bounce ideas off of one another. What’s awesome is that he’s willing to stop over at the house anytime, even to make minor changes (that end up being a big deal for our guests). I can’t say enough great things about Chris. The way he cares for our house makes it such a personalized experience—it's been a great relationship. Together, we're making the house better and giving guests great experiences. That’s the bottom line."
"Ultimately, Swiss Haus been a wonderful escape for us, and we're trying to recreate that for our guests. Vacasa has made it really easy. We don’t worry about the management of our chalet because we know Chris and the local team are taking care of it all.
We definitely plan to hold on to this place. We go up there every six weeks or so—Vacasa has a calendar feature on their website that is perfect for last-minute trips. If our home isn’t booked for a night or weekend, we may jump in the car and use it ourselves. We’re very fortunate to have a home in the mountains to use for a getaway, where we can relax by our wood-burning fireplace or walk the trails with our labradoodle. And because my wife decorated it, it really feels like home.
Everyone needs to find time to take those getaways, whether it’s for a weekend or longer. Enjoy the escape. Enjoy life."
The opinions and experiences in this article represent the author’s viewpoint and do not necessarily reflect Vacasa policies.
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