As we all enjoy this holiday season let me take a moment to give you an update as AVROA enters its 7th year.



About the VR market:

This year I have been to 5 Vacation Rental conferences in three countries, some were for owners and some for managers. Here’s what I learned.

1- The large listing platforms are quickly shifting their focus away from owners and small managers, like us, to larger management companies. The reason is simple; you can make a lot more money managing one account with 500 property listings than managing 500 accounts with one property listing each.

2- Online booking is here to stay because it is the best way these large listing services can collect their guest service fees.

And, here’ something else I learned:

Companies like Expedia, who owns HomeAway and VRBO, TripAdvisor, who owns Vacation Home Rentals, and Airbnb have nothing against owners or small managers. They just see them as too inexperienced and expensive to work with. Vacation rentals are no longer the cottage industry that your parents may have used the past. It is a multi-billion dollar industry run by corporate executives that have cutting edge technology. Either you are able to play on their level or you are off the team.

I can also tell you this. As an owner myself, attending these conferences, it has become very clear that no single owner or manager will ever be able to compete or change the direction Wall Street is taking this market. There is no Facebook page or website design that will save us. There is no way to beat their lock on SEO.

Our best strategy is to continue working together to build AVROA’s capabilities so we can compete with these large platforms on their level and protect our interests.

Now for the good news. AVROA is doing great!

AVROA’s membership is up, our inquiry generation is up and we continue to gain new technology partners who want to work on ways to make their technology more available to owners and small managers.

There’s going to be a lot of change in 2017. Some companies will go out of business. The large platforms will continue to change their rules but it’s also going to be a very good year.

In 2016, 60% of vacationers chose an “alternative venue” over a hotel as the place to spend their vacations.

A large portion of that “alternative venue” was us.

If you are not already part of AVROA I encourage you to take a look at our programs. We have come a long way and I see 2017 as a great year for our members.

Have a safe and joyous holiday


Best Regards,

Rod Fitts, President