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i advertise with owners direct, really fed up

(98 Posts)
danTDM Thu 21-Jul-16 08:13:47

anyone else fed up with all the changes with the company? It is not what it was.

We have advertised with them for 8 years. 8 years ago it was clear and simple and people didn't pay to book. Now it is a nightmare.

Anyone else with a rental holiday property that can suggest an alternative?

StillDrSethHazlittMD Thu 21-Jul-16 08:17:23

I don't own a property but for years I never went abroad so was always hiring cottages in the UK. I think it depends hugely where you live as a lot of areas have companies that deal solely with properties in that area, rather than trying to cover the whole country. For example, in Devon and Cornwall has Toad Hall Cottages; I've had several through them over the years. There is also Kent and Sussex Cottages (you can guess where they cover). If you're in a popular holiday area where people are always going for holidays, I'd look into a local one. I think you get far better "attention".

danTDM Thu 21-Jul-16 08:24:19

thanks drseth I will try and find something similar in Spain. The company has now been bouht out, along with hundeds of others and expedia have the monopoly, now trying to make renters pay, us pay and we are all lost in this huge portal system. It's horrible. What you suggest would be perfect.

CowVersusMouse Thu 21-Jul-16 08:28:21

But are you the real Dan TDM?

danTDM Thu 21-Jul-16 08:29:23

No!! smile

PaulDacreCuntyMcCuntFace Thu 21-Jul-16 08:44:37

If your place is in Spain are you in an urbanisation? If so then it's worth chatting to the President of the committee - or a committee member - to find out if there are any full-time expats who do key-holding. Most Urbs will have people who live there year round, and it is really common that there will be a small group who will do extra bits and pieces for some income. Quite often they'll do key holding, airport runs, cleaning, weekly visits whilst the property is empty to check it's OK, little bits of maintenance (like painting the grills and shutters, or repairing your air con).

I know a few people who use a key holder like this - and part of what he does is takes bookings for their properties. So they advertise on Gumtree or local holiday websites, and it goes via email to them and they make contact with their keyholder who gets it all booked in. 99% of the bookings are through word of mouth or repeat visits.

Worth checking!

Birdandsparrow Thu 21-Jul-16 08:57:11

You have to be a bit careful in Spain as the government has made it much more complex tax wise to rent a propoerty and there are large fines if you aren't doing it above board and paying taxes and filing tax returns. So, be careful about doing it "off the books" so to speak.

danTDM Thu 21-Jul-16 08:57:33

paulDacre Thanks! We live here and manage it ourselves, just advertise with what was a great system... owners direct. Now they and other companies have all been bought out and there is one HUGE website which is charging people to book a holiday etc. It is all a bit of a nightmare and very recent (a month or so)

We had bookings all year. Now we, and others, are lost in the system and people who want to rent have to pay to do so. I wondered if there was anyone else in the same boat?

Birdandsparrow Thu 21-Jul-16 08:58:30

I don't mean you'd be doing anything dodgy just that even if a key holder takes the booking you still need to be paying tax and filing tax returns.

danTDM Thu 21-Jul-16 09:00:15

birdandsparrow Thanks for you reply. We live here, are Spanish and pay all taxes, it's all above board! We advertised using owners direct and it has completely changed. It has become a monopoly. Pain in the arse!

averylongtimeago Thu 21-Jul-16 09:01:09

Have you looked on the "Lay my Hat" property owners forum? It is specifically for holiday letting owners and has lots of good information. I have noticed similar grumbles about owners direct on there too.

danTDM Thu 21-Jul-16 09:01:46


danTDM Thu 21-Jul-16 09:03:02

I haven't averylongtime I'll look now, thanks so much!

AgentProvocateur Thu 21-Jul-16 09:05:16

I've booked my Spanish property through airbnb for the past couple of years. Is that an option for you?

MephistoMarley Thu 21-Jul-16 09:06:33

Try Airbnb. My parents have used owners direct for years and put it on Airbnb 2 years ago, they have almost doubled their bookings and free to list so no harm trying it

trafalgargal Thu 21-Jul-16 09:08:28

AIRBNB has become my first place to look as its transparent with charges and you can't post reviews without having stayed.

PollyPerky Thu 21-Jul-16 09:09:40

I'm confused OP.

Tell me more!

We've used that website for a few holidays in the UK and overseas. We have only ever paid the owners the fee for the accommodation.

Are you now saying there is a fee for customers using the site to book the accommodation? How does this work because I assumed you, the owner, would pay a percentage of your bookings or a flat monthly fee for advertising.

danTDM Thu 21-Jul-16 09:10:05

agent and Mephisto, thank you so much. This is definitely an option. I was wondering if that was a good site to advertise on and both of you recommend, I think I'll give it a go. Definitely leaving od as it has become totally untenable. Thanks.

lilacwineplease Thu 21-Jul-16 09:10:35

As someone who has rented via owners direct several times (and currently looking again), I've noticed prices seem to have risen a lot. Not just because of the drop in sterling either.

op - if you like, pm me with your details if you have availability for the very end of August and the property is by the sea overseas.

Hoppinggreen Thu 21-Jul-16 09:12:06

Are you in Spain? Try Spain-holidays.
Having said that we are in an area very popular with Spanish and Portuguese people who spend the whole summer there so 90% of our bookings come from them with the occasional Irish or English family.
In 3 years we didn't get 1 booking from Owners Direct, although we did get enquiries. I refused to renew a couple of years ago but then last year DH wanted to give them another go, I said it would be a waste of money and sure enough not 1 booking from them all year.
I think there are too many properties on there so too much choice for people.

PollyPerky Thu 21-Jul-16 09:13:44

Dan can you answer my point? I can't see anything on their site saying people booking have to pay them. They have been owned by the current company since 2007.

danTDM Thu 21-Jul-16 09:19:16

polly no, you pay hundreds to advertise each year, expendia has now bought all the smaller companies, like homeaway, holiday lettings, owners direct etc.

All very, very recent. Now renters have to pay EXTRA to book, for the priveledge! Also, there are literally millions of properties. Also, renters will have to pay shortly through the internet, not direct to the owner. Rather than being a simple, small, trustworthy advertising site for owners and renters it has been taken over as some sort of ginormous booking site. They don't vet the owners of anything, but they act like they do. It is disingenuous.

Reviewers do have to have stayed there trafalgar that hasn't changed.

danTDM Thu 21-Jul-16 09:22:27

Poly I have advertised with od since 2005, believe me, it is not owned by the same company.

As an owner advertising with them I have just received a stupid 'videoinfo' thing about how things will change as of very soon!

danTDM Thu 21-Jul-16 09:26:28

Thanks hopping, I will definitely look into that. Lilac thanks, we are booked most of this year but thank you. It all worked fine for this summer (although everyone was a bit saturated) until literally about a month ago. The latest changes are ridiculous. Next summer I doubt we will get any bookings.

PollyPerky Thu 21-Jul-16 09:26:47

Sorry, but your post implied it was your customers who had to pay to book/ use the system. You implied there was a booking fee for people like me using their site.

Their website is clearly out of date because it says the business is owned by HomeAway.

Have you thought about advertising yourself in upmarket magazines like The Lady- bit niche but friends always book through adverts there.
Also, English Country Cottages have holiday properties overseas.

And finally, maybe your own website?

When I look for a holiday I do a google search and I'd be happy to book directly after talking to the owners.

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