Taking on the vacation home rental industry, one listing at a time.
OCEAN CITY, MD, March 28, 2018 /24-7PressRelease/ — Change is sweeping through the vacation home rental industry, and some resourceful entrepreneurs are stepping up to provide alternatives to the giant online rental home listing sites.
One such woman is Bonnie Shiffner, Owner of Maryland-Delaware Vacation Rentals by Owner at
“As a vacation rental homeowner, the extensive changes to Expedia owned sites (VRBO and HomeAway) were frustrating,” said Shiffner. “I was told I had to accept instant online booking and payments on my site. I was blocked from directly communicating with potential renters as contact information between owners and guests was removed. I could not accept the new terms because I need to communicate with clients prior to accepting reservations. This is to ensure they are a good fit for our properties. I was listed with VRBO for 17 years and suddenly they said I could avoid instant online booking and other changes, but only if I paid nearly double to list.”
Then she was informed that her yearly subscription would increase from $249 to $599, if she didn’t enable the online booking feature. Years went by, and the rule changes kept coming. “When I finally decided to leave the site, I was paying for ‘platinum’ listings, to the tune of $1200.00 per listing per year.”
“I was willing to pay the higher fee if I could communicate with my customers and list my rentals without enabling online booking. Their customer service department said ‘yes’ but when I asked them to send me an email confirming the conversation, they refused, telling me their policies change all the time,” said Shiffner.
It was at then that Shiffner realized she could not list with VRBO any longer. Unsure of what to do and seeing her vacation home listings moving down in their VRBO placement, Shiffner began to look for alternatives. That’s when she decided to launch her own vacation home rental online listing site at https://www.mdrbo.com.The site covers vacation home rentals in the Maryland, Delaware and Washington, DC areas.
Drawing on her 18 years of experience as a project engineer and successfully managing multiple rental properties in the Ocean City Maryland area, Shiffner felt confident she could make it work. “I took a leap of faith,” says Shiffner. She brings with her 2 associates with extensive systems administration and marketing experience. “Along with building a solid business, my goal is to allow vacation rental homeowners to manage their properties as they see fit. Many people have told me they managed their rental properties for years very successfully, until the recent changes were made mandatory to stay on Expedia owned sites. Most owners are local folks and retirees who count on their rental income, and they have been trampled by the mega corporations. I’m simply offering vacation home owners a solid listing and advertising site model, with no strings attached. The homeowners on my site can manage their property their way.”
Shiffner provides a free 3 month listing to any vacation homeowner who lists with her site at https://www.mdrbo.com and should they choose to subscribe, yearly subscriptions will be $99. “The site tools are intuitive and easy to use, but we provide local technical support for those who need a little help building their listing. No more getting transferred to an overseas phone bank,” said Shiffner.
To learn more about Maryland-Delaware Vacation Rentals by Owner, go to https://www.mdrbo.com. There you can learn more about Bonnie and her regional vacation home rental business. Bonnie can be reached at [email protected] or 610-955-2416.
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