Hi, I’m Steve. I’m a middle aged young guy from Colorado who now lives mostly in Phoenix AZ. I’ve been in the VR business for about 7 years, which doesn’t make me any more of an expert than you. I created this site to help other owners find the resources, tools, and personal connections to make their Vacation Rental a success much faster than it took me.
Why VR Owner’s Guide?
Over the years as an owner, I’ve come to realize one important factor for success: The Power of Sharing. Those who try to go at it alone will never be as sucessful as those who share ideas and information. I’ve seen this happen as I created relationships with other owners who are “my competition” yet we’ve really helped each other much more than expected. This was especially true as we we banded together to fight (and WIN!) a local county ban on Vacation Rentals.
This spring the HomeAway Summit happened to be in my backyard of Scottsdale AZ, so I had to go. I was amazed at the great people I met who were all so passionate about this business and who were such honest and great ambassadors to our hospitality niche. I loved the amount of learning, sharing and community that was created those 3 days.
VR Owner’s Guide is my way of creating that same experience, but not just 3 days a year for the lucky few who could afford the $399 to attend. VROG is a free resource available to all Owners 365 days a year.
Note: This site launched September of 2013, so we are just getting started!
Like many of you, I got into the Vacation Rental industry by accident. It was a random roadtrip with friends up to the mountains of Flagstaff AZ where a friend had a cool little Cabin. It was such a great change of pace from Phoenix. He also rented it out. Seemed like a brilliant idea, so a year or so later, which happened to be 2006, I purchased my own Cabin in the same area.
For those that forget, 2006 was probably the worst year EVER to purchase real estate. I paid $360,000 for my 3Br Cabin, and it’s still worth about $100,000 less as we speak. My mortgage is also horrible, as the second mortgage is over a 10 percent APR. I can’t refinance because as a self employed person who recently quit their day job, I don’t qualify.
Why do I tell you my personal sob story?
Because, even though I have a bad mortgage, on a Cabin that is worth WAY less than I owe on it, it still is a money maker for me. In fact, recently I have been clearing $1000 to $2000+ a month in profit from just this one property.
Therefore, if I can make this kind of income off of a really bad mortgage, I’m confident about anyone just now getting into the VR game who can purchase a property at a much lower price. Especially if you take advantage of the resources here at VR Owner’s Guide.
My Vacation Rental Philosophy and Mission
Don’t worry, I won’t get too deep here. Haha. As I mentioned, I’m by no means the expert and there are 100 right ways to run this business. However I do have some pretty strong opinions, and I still see plenty of owners making their lives so much harder than it has to be. There is a better way to manage your VR more profitably while providing better service to your guests and also being a good neighbor in your community. Everything I talk about carefully considers all 3 of these important factors: You the Owner, Our Renters, the Neighbors in Our Community. The good news is many of the best practices are a win/win/win for all 3 groups.
My mission is to help raise the level of the entire industry and help as many owners as possible become successful, faster. Not from my knowledge, but the collective wisdom of everyone who contributes by sharing, being a guest on the show, or just commenting on the blog.
Thanks for taking the time to read this, and I hope to see you get involved in any way that helps you grow your VR business. Please contribute and share your stories and ideas as well.