This post is part of a series on attending the Mr. Landlord convention in St. Louis. Click here to read previous posts.
So, I went into the big ballroom filled with experienced landlords and gave my presentation. The theme of the convention was “Time to Make Changes.” I talked about how the biggest change I made in the last couple of years was to get more connected to other landlords and to do more networking. I got through my speech and I felt pretty good about being able to connect listeners with my message. I received a lot of nice feedback from the audience afterwards and several people thanked me for sharing my story.
Now that my task was completed, I was able to sit back and soak up the great information presented by the other speakers. One was Kimberly Hoyt Smith, author and founder of CorporateHousingByOwner.com. CHBO is an online portal connecting furnished rentals and the traveling public. Corporate housing or furnished monthly rentals are also known by the term “short term housing.” Hoyt Smith talked about the opportunities which exist to property owners to increase profits by transforming their rentals into corporate housing.
What was particularly interesting was when she shared the variety of client bases who commonly benefit from shorter term stays. Many of these groups might not cross the mind of the average owner with available units to rent. She mentioned families or individuals who are placed by their insurance companies when a personal dwelling damaged by fire or flooding is being repaired. Insurance companies often offer the option of an official hotel stay, but many policy holders prefer the more personal feel living in a furnished rental apartment or house.
Other clients who seek out furnished rentals are visiting professors and grad students in college towns and academic communities. People related to the health and medical field who benefit from furnished rentals include the growing field of traveling nurses and even the families of organ transplant patients awaiting organ donations and in recovery.
Even if an owner is interested in converting a unit to a furnished rental, that owner might not have a clue about how to get started. Hoyt Fuller wrote a book called The Corporate Housing Handbook which breaks down into helpful details what an owner is expected to provide in a furnished rental and the process for making that unit available. She said she included tips “even down to how many spoons and forks you should have.”
One helpful hint she shared is that while most owners should guess that offering Wi-Fi would be a standard amenity, offering a landline phone in the unit is also highly recommended. While nearly every rental client will bring their own personal cell phone for their stay, a non-electrical landline is a required back up in case of dead cell batteries, forgotten cell chargers, or downed power lines due to bad weather.
You can buy this handbook on Amazon for $25- $30 or you can download for free as a CHBO member on their site. Membership includes listing your available rental on the CHBO website.
I have not received compensation for any endorsements. I just like to share info I find to make managing properties easier.
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