Owners of Orlando vacation home rentals know that it’s important to set up house rules for their guests.Holiday travelers need to know what’s expected of them during their stay so there is no confusion, and to ensure that your property is well-cared for during their stay.
Laying out clear house rules is a professional way of stating what your guests can and cannot do during their stay, and what penalties will occur if they break the rules.
Your rules can be written in a formal language or you can have some fun with them if that suits your personality better. The style itself doesn’t matter, but the content should address these key areas:
What to Include in Your Orlando Vacation Rental House Rules
The opening paragraph provides you with the opportunity to set the tone, and explain why you have these house rules in place. It should also clearly state what the consequences will be to the guest if these rules are not obeyed.
The next section of your house rules should outline any topics that don’t belong in a clause of their own. For instance, you could state that guests should report any dispute to the property manager as soon as possible.
Noise and the Neighborhood
Many Orlando vacation homes are located in quiet residential neighborhoods near Disney. As a vacation rental owner, it’s your responsibility to ensure that you keep the peace in your neighborhood. That means spelling out in clear language that guests should respect the other residents of the community and not engage in anti-social behavior such as excessive noise late at night.
Don’t want your guests to have extra visitors in your home? Let them know! Make it crystal clear in the house rules if there are any limitations to how many guests can be on your property during their stay.
Some Orlando vacation home owners allow their guests to hold parties and other events at their rental. But if you’re not one of them, state that in the house rules so there is no misunderstanding.
Parking can be an issue for your holiday guests, depending on which community is home to your Orlando vacation rental. Single family home communities may not have as much available parking as condominium complexes. Make sure you state in the rules whether or not your guests can bring their own vehicles, how many vehicles they can have on site, and where they are able to park. This information should be sent to your guests before they arrive, so you can guarantee there won’t be any issues regarding parking.
Garbage and Recycling
Guests who choose vacation rentals instead of hotels understand that they will need to perform some household chores, like doing the dishes. Your house rules should also include details about disposing of garbage, and recyclable materials.
Even though some Orlando vacation rental homes are located in gated communities or high-rise condominiums with on-site security, it’s still important to remind guests about how to keep their belongings safe during their stay. Include reminders about closing and locking all windows and doors when they leave the property, and to keep any valuable items out of sight. You can also use this section to remind guests not to leave the air conditioning on with windows open to save energy.
Hot Tub/ Swimming Pool
For Orlando vacation home rentals with a private pool, the house rules should include information about pool safety, as well as any restrictions (such as time of day the pool can be used), any prohibited items on the deck (glass, etc.). These notices will help to give you peace of mind, and could save you from an expensive pool cleaning bill.
Balcony / Deck Areas
Many Orlando vacation rentals near Disney feature balconies to enjoy the nightly fireworks shows from Epcot and the Magic Kingdom. However, balconies can be dangerous for little ones. It’s a good idea to include a line or two regarding use of these spaces, especially where children are involved.
If you don’t want guests to smoke inside your vacation rental, let them know in uncertain terms to avoid any smelly surprises after your guests depart.
Many people bring their pets on holiday, so if your vacation home is pet-friendly, celebrate it! Make sure you stipulate any restrictions in your rules as to how many pets are allowed at one time, or if you prohibit pets over a certain size so your guests are prepared.
Orlando, Florida weather is ideal for barbecuing, especially during the winter months. If you have a grill available for guests to use, be sure to leave instructions on how to cook on the barbecue and how to clean it properly after each use.
Damages and Breakages
Accidents do happen, so don’t scare your guests into thinking they’ll lose their deposit over a broken glass or plate. Instead, include a line in your rules that breakages must be reported in a timely manner. You might want to include an additional rule that restricts the moving of furniture from room to room to avoid expensive damages.
It’s a good idea to remind your guests about check-out procedures, even if you’ve already covered this in a previous correspondence. Include information about cleaning, garbage disposal, key handover, etc. – anything to make the check-out process go smoothly.
Emergency Contact Details
It’s always a good idea to provide an emergency contact number in case anything goes wrong with your property. This number will be in addition to local emergency numbers, such as local hospital/ambulance, fire department and police station.
The final paragraph should summarize the conditions of the house rules so your guests understand what will happen if any of them are breached.
If you're interested in buying an Orlando vacation home so you can generate income through short-term rentals, contact the real estate experts at Team Donovan. We enjoy helping buyers find their dream home.