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  • Holiday Lets

    Cottage in Masham, North Yorkshire

    Hello

    I am looking at a 3 bed cottage in Masham. It is a lovely stone built property with log fires and a decent garden. It needs a touch up inside but could be made to look very nice.

    This is probably an open-ended question but could anyone give me a steer as to the occupancy rate I could expect, assuming it is priced in line with the market and marketed through one of the big boys?

    Thank you

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    Hi Rob,

    With a good quality product, it should be a doddle to get full occupancy for summer holidays, half terms, Bank Holidays, Christmas, and New Year.

    However, in order for a holiday let to be profitable, you need to achieve occupancy in the "shoulder" months or low/mid seasons.

    You can only achieve this if certain factors are in place.

    These are:

    Within 2 hour drive of a major city centre - to catch long-weekender/staycation market.

    Close to a great beach

    In an area of year-round events and activities that bring footfall to the area.

    Has a host of fine-dining options.

    Allow pets to stay.

    Top 5 signs of a holiday let with year round occupancy potential 

    Top 5 tips to increase holiday cottage occupancy

    If you go and look at the calendars of similar properties in the area on the holiday let portals, you will be able to ascertain potential occupancy rates.

    ​Hope that helps?

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    Hello Vanessa

    Thank you. I have looked at booking calendars and was slightly surprised at how much availability there is over the summer holidays. How far in advance to people tend to book?

    Thank you

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    Good question!

    ​I found it varies year by year.

    Last year I had most of May, June, July, and August booked by the end of January.

    This year, I've had quite a few bookings for the summer already, but they are coming in in dribs and drabs.

    The main booking period is around Easter when it feels like spring has sprung and summer is coming.

    Long range forecasts or reports of a hot summer or heatwave also increase bookings quite significantly. Smile

    It also depends on how much competition there is in the area and how your product "sits" in the market place, compared to other comparable properties, which may have more traction in the market place than yours. i.e. built up a loyal clientele over a number of years.

    The best possible thing to do is create a great product, and then people will come back year after year and your occupancy will increase.

    You can offer incentives like "10% off your next holiday if you book within one week of the end of this one".

    Try and get creative with the marketing and create a picture that the person can step in to and imagine themselves having a holiday at your cottage.

    Highlight location attractions, restaurants, walks, etc. to get them imagining their holiday.

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    Hello Vanessa

    As ever, very helpful.

    Thank you

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    V. mentioned the importance of creating a picture for your guests to buy into.

    Video and photographs are vital tools in this regard.

    Here's a little video of one of our holiday lets, as an example:



    You may also enjoy this video recorded about four years ago which explains the rationale behind us choosing Camber Sands for the above property:



    Hope that provides some additional inspiration and insights Rob? Smile

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