Recover Your Funds

Sign up for No Obligation Recovery consultation!

How to Dodge a Vacation Rental Ordeal

Here’s how you can escape vacation rental drama with these tips

What do you do when a vacation rental site scams you? If the place you found after weeks of research is nothing like you imagined it to be and completely different from the pictures they posted? What if the rooms you booked turn out to be like closets?

The vacation rental industry has been booming and has given travelers a wealth of new, budget-friendly lodging options, but it also brought along a new set of problems. For example, if the front desk staff is not present, whom do you call if you need something? And do you get a full refund in the event that the property is entirely different than how it looked online? Gear up with these tips before booking your next vacation rental. Understand your consumer rights and what steps you can take if the property turns out to be different than what you expected.

Know if the property is legal

Short-term rentals are often illegal. And since there are no uniform laws that regulate the short-term rental industry, it all becomes pretty shady. Individual states and cities can enact and enforce their own laws to protect consumers and also cut the loss of hotel and occupancy tax revenue.

Laws vary widely, but if an owner or tenant wishes to list their property as a short-term rental, they must obtain a business license or operating permit, pass a safety code inspection and pay an application fee. Why is this information important when you are just looking to rent a property? And why should you know if the property is registered as a short-term rental or not when you are just going to stay at the property for a few days?

This is for your peace of mind. Knowing that the property you are staying in has passed a safety inspection and is updated with regulations will put you at ease. Moreover, if something bad happens with your rental and you file a complaint with the state or city, your chances of getting your money recovered increase. This will empower you as a consumer with the state or city on your side.

Before you decide on a property, check with the local attorney general’s consumer affairs department to check the protections in place for short-term renters. While some popular sites offer protections for travelers who are unsatisfied with their vacation rental experience, they do not guarantee that you will get a refund.

Enlist a travel agent

Some popular sites have security measures in place to protect users from fraudulent listings. User-submitted reviews, verified photos, and an internal messaging system help travelers have a good experience. Community reviews can help you filter out unfit properties, but if you are still unsure, rent from a travel agent.

Travel agents rent properties that are managed by agencies instead of individual owners. These properties are personally visited and vetted by agency staff. These properties can turn out to be more expensive and limited but renting a curated apartment, condo, or home cuts your risk of fraud and dissatisfaction. Moreover, the travel agents can then act as your advocate if anything distasteful occurs during your stay.

Make a rental agreement.

As with any normal rental lease, a rental agreement or contract outlines your rights as the guest and the rights of the owner. The agreement should specify the fees, deposits, refunds, guidelines about the property’s cleanliness (it will be habitable upon your arrival, and any other rules you should know about the house or community. The document defines the legal relationship between you and the owner; this means you can refer to it in case of a dispute. If you rent a listing with a rental agreement, ensure both you and the owner sign it and that the agreement is squared away before you make the payment.

© 2022 Financial Fund Recovery. All rights reserved.

Privacy Notice

Our website uses cookies to assure you have the best experience with us and further assist us in advertising our services. Please read our updated privacy policy to learn more.

Privacy Policy