Home away is now charging a service fee for absolutely no reason. (in 91 reviews)
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Recently I decide to expand and try listing my brand new apartment on HomeAway. BIG MISSTAKE!!!For the last few years I was listing my apartment trough AirBnB and 9Flats. So far AirBnB just phenomenal I can see who is booking, is person verified, payment collected in advance and property insured at Airbnb expense. Once I accept reservation it is booked and payed for. 9Flats operates in similar model with deference that its fees are considerably bigger and once I accept reservation the other party has 24Hours to confirm or decline. That is not the most efficient way of booking especially if you have multiple inquiries with similar dates. However I decided to try alternatives and try listing on HomeAway. First what strikes me is site design person who designed it has zero competence how to make it intuitive and user friendly. I been using it a months and still cant believe how immature that site is. Second it makes host to fill all sorts of information, yet nothing is required of guest that is trying to make a reservation. I was flooded with anonymous request that led to nowhere. No guest profiles, no reviews, no verifications makes me uneasy thinking I have to give them my house keys. Third there is property insurance up to $1500 but at the price of $59 per reservation. Once I read the fine print I doubt that it will be easy to get your claim for damage. Fourth FEES!!! Of $2696 that HomeAway charged my guest I received 2250. That is $387 charge plus $59 for insurance!! 15.48% overall commission!??!? For what exactly? Is everything guaranteed? Fifth and the out most important no guarantees or assurances of any sort. HomeAway version of online booking is very expensive joke. In my case after reservation was made and guest arrived I was expecting to receive my money within second day aftyer check-in. Money did not showed up so I called customer service and learned that for online booking HomeAway holds money for 30 days. Ohh well I was thinking everything is payed so I can wait. Here comes the SURPRIVE!!! 15 days later I received email stating that payment was reversed and it is my problem to dispute that and I owe HomeAway $35 payment reversal fee. Not a pleasant situation to be in. That brings me to conclusion that is the reason why most of the HomeAway hosts resist online booking at all cost. If you taking all the risk you what to make you are getting payed. Such setup is perfect for all sorts of con artist and majority of complains indicate that to be the case. I have very little hope to get my money from HomeAway but hopefully this post will help someone else to avoid similar situation.
We Own and Manage Properties from North Carolina, through South Florida, and the Florida Keys.
We started with VRBO, then expanded onto HomeAway.
Over the years we went through Tiered Subscription Levels;
Then we went through;
1.) U.S. Bundle
2.) European Bundle
3.) Featured Listing
All at extra costs.
Then at the beginning of this year, we went through
1.) On-Line Bookings, they charge +/- 2.9%, we process at 1.4%. Savings are passed on to our Guests in lower Rates.
We have not increased our Rates in over Seven (7) Years.
2.) Then we went through having Banners posted onto Guest Inquiries, that they were NOT protected if they did not Book through HomeAway via on-line
a.) We accept Credit Cards. Guest protection is afforded through the Account issuer
b.) We are also a member of the Better Business Bureau, A+ Rated. Guests are entitled to Arbitration.
3.) Then we went through a Service Fee attempting to be imposed to perspective Guests
THE ENTITY HAS MORPHED FROM A MARKETING PLATFORM FOR OWNERS, AND PROPERTY MANAGERS TO A PREDATORY ENTITY.
2.) PROPERTY MANAGERS
3.) PERSPECTIVE GUESTS.
CERTAINLY GLAD CLASS-ACTION SUITS HAVE COMMENCED.
WE HAVE SEVERED OUR RELATIONSHIP WITH HOMEAWAY, AND ARE LETTING OUR LISTINGS EXPIRE DURING 2016.
YLYD Holdings International R. E., Inc.
State of Florida Broker's License No.: BK 390544
State of Florida Division of Hotels & Restaurants License No.: CND 5403304
Monroe County License No.: 46111-106688
Member; Key Largo Chamber of Commerce
Monroe County Board of Realtors
National Multiple Listing Service
VISIT OUR WEB-SITE: (nestorloredo.com)
Lovely house in a very pretty area! Easy walking distance to the port of Mazarron bars, restaurants and the surrounding area. Accommodation ideal for 5 people, gardens very pretty. The housekeeper was very helpful, as were the neighbours. We stayed in March 2016 and weather was warm and ideal for walking. Would definitely recommend and look forward to visiting again.
We booked a cabin for the weekend on VRBO.com. After payment accepted, received confirmation from cabin resort. In the confirmation it notified us they were having construction on their property all weekend. On the VRBO website, the only contact number is for their parent company HomeAway. I called and was assured the payment was pending, would cancel out, and we could cancel without any repercussions. I also called the resort to notify them we would not be staying. They said there would be no charge.
We then booked a second cabin for our weekend. We were charged for the cabin, insurance, and a 25 dollar booking fee.
After our weekend trip, we checked our credit card. The charge for the first cabin had gone through and was not refunded. I called Home Away again. They assured me the charge was pending, and would come off. I told them the charge had gone through. They referred me to the cabin resort, saying they had already sent payment to the cabin resort and could not refund my money.
I called a total of 6 times, every time they would tell me they couldn't find my reservation, then they found it, but now they can't see the credit card charge, and finally refer to the resort.
I spoke with the resort. They said they never received payment and had not received any emails or phone calls from HomeAway (as reported by HomeAway).
After I looked at my credit card statement again, I noticed the charge wasn't from VRBO or HomeAway. The charge was made by VacayStay Connections. I called the corporate office of VacayStay and finally spoke with someone that could easily see my reservation. They are refunding our money, but charge a $25 dollar fee for refunding. This process took 2 weeks of phone calls and hassle. Will never use HomeStay or any of its companies again. Hoping we get our refund this time.
Founders Carl Shepherd and Brian Sharples of Austin must be unnerved with what has happened to their dream. Small business owners should ask them - can they do anything to help homeowners who signed on with these two and took a chance? I have used HA for over six years and praised the company's practices and business model. One of my listings expired on April Fool's Day, (but I was no longer a fool. I ended it.) And when my only other listing ends, I will cancel it as well. I have a small business and have been devastated. I may have to sell my duplex cottage and lose my income. I will join into the Class Action Lawsuit being filed in CA and TX and urge others to check into it as well. There are sites under "Complaints against Homeaway" on-line which show owners' anger and disappointment over contract violations, poor service, and inept customer relations - something that never happened before. Very sad indeed.
Just spent a week in Tuscany on a HomeAway vacation. It was PERFECT, as were our previous vacations booked on this site. After reading all these negative Nancy reviews I had to put in my two cents worth here.
Simply put, this is all on you renters. You have the INTERNET. Awesome tool this thing. Use it and do your research. When you find a listing that interests you, for cripes sake read ALL the reviews. Judiciously. Bad reviews? Don't book. No reviews? Don't book! Does everyone rave about the landlord being helpful and available? Good sign. All five stars? Good sign. I've had nothing but wonderful experiences with HomeAway, but, like AirBnB, it isn't idiot proof, and of course nothing is perfect. Use your head and it can open the doors to some amazing adventures. I LOVED my experience, and my host. He already had 34 all five star reviews. I just gave him one more!
I hate doing stuff like this, but I have to bring something to the public eye. It is quite serious in my opinion and has pretty much solidified that I will never, ever use Homeaway.
On April 17th I made a reservation request for this property for stay on May 14-22: https://www.homeaway.com/vacation-rental/p783558vb?uni_id=1331496. Side note: if you don't read this post to entirety, this dude is horrible so don't book there. I was excited. It seemed cute for me and my mom, and the right price point. I also purchased the cancellation protection insurance because I knew there was a chance of a last minute cancellation because of my mom's health. I sent my mom the post.
A little backstory here, my mom recently had brain surgery. Because of this, she needs to boil water for a nasal rinse every night. She told me this when I sent her the reservation, and that she noticed it didn't have a stove. I was unaware this is a necessity when I booked, so I had to cancel. This was April 24. Only 1 week from when the reservation was made.
Now, admittedly, their cancellation policy is loosely defined as "full refund if canceled within 60 days" there is little to no other definition though, including how much would not be refundable, what's non-refundable, or any other clauses for bookings made WITHIN 60 days.
Long story slightly shorter- the owner is refusing to refund me $431 and being a total d*wad about it. Homeaway is offering no help, basically saying I need to work it out with the owner. Welp, he's a real d*bag soooo I'm basically screwed out of $431 for a stay I will not be having, regardless of buying cancellation insurance, because of a medical need of my mothers. I mean, when you lay it all out...it's like...kind of a nightmare. He also said his reason for not refunding me was because a. Homeaway wouldn't let him, and b. because even tho I canceled the dates were unavailable so he couldn't make the money back.
So, i took a screenshot: http://c.hlp.sc/foDZ
The dates were available...also....look at that super free calendar. Just sayin. Not like people are chompin' at the bit to stay there.
I am not only appalled by the lack of compassion about my situation with my mother's health and her needs for the room, but how there's literally nothing in place to protect users from this. It's not like I canceled last minute for a $#*!ty reason leaving them in a lurch. I canceled with plenty of time to spare, and for a very good reason.
Also, he's marking my messages as spam, presumably so there's no record of communication since i'm trying to take action: http://c.hlp.sc/fob9 Also NOW the dates are listed as unavailable. Fishy.
Honestly, Homeaway. I'll be happy just getting a refund for just cause, but I would also kick this dude off your site.
I rented a property from the HomeAway website. This property was managed by city kit. Property was filthy and furniture old with dirty linens on bed and stains on sofa not the leather sofa that was in the picture. We emailed HomeAway and they didn't even respond!! Under no circumstance would I ever rent from them!!!
i've searched the listings for rio for over a week and clicked "book it" twice to rent places that the ad showed "calendar updated" each day. both times the booking request expired after 24 hours and then after expiration the lister contacted me saying the property was not available, but they had another listing on another site they wanted to redirect me to. i decided instead of wasting my time trying to book apartments that weren't available (because even though it says calendar updated they never are) i would contact them first, so i contacted 8 more. 7 of the 8 replied that the apartment was not available but they had other listings on another site. the one that was available was charging 5x the listed rate on the ad. because i wasn't familiar with how the site works, the very first rental i tried to book did not have the "book it" button available to initiate the booking through the site, and they wanted me to bankwire the funds to them outside the site. when i called the homeaway customer service number, they told me that would not be eiligible for the site's "book with confidence" guarantee. i am seeing a lot of complaints on here from property owners who just want to list on the site but handle all business offsite, but i can assure them that it is most likely the renters who are demanding to do business through the site. who wants to fly to a foreign country, or even another state in your own country, and then wind up in a legal dispute in the property owner's state/country when there is a problem, either with the apartment or the deposits or the rent? as long as everything is as advertised, and the renters have described themselves accurately, then i doubt there are going to be many disputes. the main issue i am experiencing with the site is all the ads are fake. it is rare that any are available despite the ad showing "calendar updated [today's date]", and if they are available they want 5x the advertised rate paid by western union or bank wire off-site where i have no protection against fraud. the site is worthless to me if i can't get my money back in the event of fraud or unscrupulous business practices and 99% of the ads are not available and the 1% that are available are 5x the posted rate paid by cash off site.
WARNING!! If you do not update your calendar monthly, they HIDE" your listing from potential renters. I paid $100 extra for a "special offer" to my renters for 5 weeks, but because I didn't also update my calendar, half of what I paid is wasted because no renters can find my "HIDDEN" listing!! I asked for cancel of special offer & refund of the remaining 2.5 weeks it's to run, and was told no they don't refund.
So I updated my calendar tonight and now my listing shows up..... as a SPECIAL OFFER at the bottom of all other listings. I try to take good care of my customers and expect them to do the same, but apparently they are after every almighty dollar they can scam out of travelers and homeowners.
I will look for another site to use for my listing. It's already on TRIPADVISOR and AirBNB, so just need to find a good replacement for VRBO / Homeaway!
We rented through HomeAway in Europe from a UK owner. We paid the rental and the 200BP security deposit. Now we can't get the deposit back. The homeowner says that HomeAway has the money. HomeAway US says HomeAway UK has the money, but no refund has been authorized. The home owner says she authorized repayment. Bottom line, someone was paid, but no one has my money for a refund.
And forget calling Customer Service; seldom have I talked with a group that cared little and were willing to do less, like send an email to the owner or the UK division. Based on accents, I would guess the call center is in India, but 3 calls there made clear that it wasn't their problem, it was MY PROBLEM, so they wouldn't be doing anything.
I have recently returned from a 3-month trip using HomeAway rentals exclusively. I travel several months out of every year. I will no longer use HomeAway, VRBO, or even Expedia, their corporate owner, of whom I also used to be a regular customer.That 200BP "theft" will cost them a lot more on my lost business alone.
Hasta luego, HomeAway, soon to be Home Alone, as I will certainly tell everyone I know not to use or trust them.
Tip for consumers: DONT!!!!Ask RJ about HomeAway
Someone has to pay the $3.9 billion Expedia purchase of VRBO/Homeaway and apparently it's the customer with the 4 to 9 percent "service fee" BS. Expedia's CEO says his survey of 2100 people supports online bookings, but did he ask them if they would pay 9 percent to do it in addition to the credit card fee. The people we talk to about it are mad as h--- about it and want to be able to talk to someone about their booking and call some one if things change. The property owners want to know who is coming and how many. People book 2 guests and show up with 10. People book small pets and show up with two Great Danes and a Pit-bull. Wake-up Expedia! This will only drive people to your competitor.
I have used Homeaway/VRBO many times without any problems. I really appreciated the service they offer. So back in November 2015, I booked a 4-bedroom home in downtown Rapid City for the end of July 2016. In plenty of time to get the house I wanted in the neighborhood I wanted. The owner of the house recently contacted me, 5 months later to tell me that she could no longer rent the house to me because an elderly person with Alzheimer's already lived there!!!??!! What the heck? Unfortunately, the only other 4-bedroom house that I liked was already rented for my dates. So I ended up booking a 3-bedroom 15 miles West of downtown Rapid City through Flipkey whom I shall be using from now on. And it took a while for Homeaway to get back to me regarding my complaint, probably because they have so many others... I'll probably never use them again.
I am a rental house owner.
HomeAway deactivated our listings last Friday afternoon without any warning. In an e-mail after the fact, HomeAway stated that our listing "contains messaging directing travelers to pay offline to avoid our online secure booking checkout system in violation of our content guidelines." That statement was incorrect on two facts: we only advised travelers that there were options available; and once I was able to find a working link to their "content guidelines" I found no such restriction. (I did print out the guidelines in case they try to alter them later.) Nevertheless we deleted the wording immediately and asked for our listing to be reactiavted. However, their "special team" that handles such cases conveniently does not work on weekends, so our listhings have been missing all weekend and as of now (Wednesday late afternoon) only one has been re-activated. Every time we call they inform us that they can't estimate when our case will be reviewed. It is extremely frustrating.
We have been among their top 5% earners for 9 years now and introduced many guests to their site, this is how we are rewarded? We have demanded a refund of our subscription for the time lost, but that is probably a hopeless cause. I have also suggested that they make their services optional, like HA's trip insurance used to be. I let them know that we've had several guests state that although they have been using VRBO for years (one since the 90s), they will be looking elsewhere in the future; there is a deep-seated animosity to the Ticketmaster business model. If travelers truly value their services, they will opt-in. But again, this seems a lost cause.
We feel that HomeAway/Expedia doesn't care about owners any more because basically they feel they don't need to. It is time for us to find other websites with some owner focus. We are joining HomeEscape dot com which is a new site operated by some HomeAway refugees. It is free but not well known, so we plan to let as many people as we can know about it. Please spread the word and let us know if you know any other options.
I have two homes that I have had listed with Home Away/VRBO for about five years. Now, the are changing our guest an obscene fee in order to book with us. I might understand a 1%-2% fee, but a fee that in many cases is in the range of 8%-9%. Can someone explain the difference in operating costs that Home Away incurs on a two-week booking, compared with a three day booking? There is none and yet the fee is significant for the longer stay. Home away attempted to justify this fee by saying it was needed to upgrade their marketing services for owners. Well, as an owner I have seen nothing in added marketing services. What I have seen is, a significant decline in inquires and bookings. I will explore what my options are before renewing with Home Away/VRBO. They are also going to eliminate the ability of guests to deal directly with owners by the end of this year, so the guests will have no choice but to pay this obscene fee. This trap will also require to owners to pay a fee to VRBO for collecting the payment from the guests. Not only is this a greedy action on the part of Home Away/VRBO resulting in added expenses for both owners and guest and reduced business, but it also result in much more work for me as an owner. Another example of Corporate Greed run amuck.
136 6th St--San Francisco--Don't let the location fooI you! I booked this apartment through Travel Mob (subsidiary of HomeAway) and although the inside pictures looked fine, outside the apartment was a mess. I found myself in the middle of a drug distribution neighborhood with noise throughout the day and night. Obviously, a haven for homeless, I had to step over a guy passed out and sleeping on the stoop to get through the steel door necessary to gain entry. The building was old and musty smelling and the windows didn't lock. This is not a place to stay if you value your safety and privacy and by no means ever take your children.
Chelsea Apartment NYC
" Bright corner hotel-residence above Highline park"
Hi Homeaway renters,
Has anyone else been unable to contact this "owner" about their booking and is finding it impossible to get a satisfactory response from HA?
Over 4 weeks ago we raised our concerns with HA. They have now suspended this listing but instead of pursuing the matter have suggested that we phone HA Trust and Security office in the USA, despite the fact that we are UK based.
HA have indicated to us that we are not the only people with bookings against this property, so others may be similarly affected.
Any advice/guidance gratefully received.
Cheers & thanks in advance
I am a property manager and i had more than 10 properties listed on homeaway website. Yesterday i received an email from them saying that my pay per booking listings have been removed. I was very surprised and i called the customer service who was unable to answer to my questions about the reason of the email that i received. She only told me that her colleque would call me later. No one called me then! Today i've contacted them again and again the same story.. then someone called me finally and told me that i cancelled a booking and this was the reason. It is a BIG LIE!! I said that it wasn't true and it was unfair what they did. Can you imagine what she said to me?? " If you want to advertise your properties buy an annual subscription please" !!!
This is the second time I've used Homeaway and it will be the last time. On both accounts the property owners had to directly send me the rental info by email. The second time Homeaway claimed that I needed the app to get this info for the place i rented and they keep pushing this stupid app, so I tried to download the app many times and could never get access to it. They NEVER sent me my rental information for my second rental at all. NEVER. I had to call the property owner to get it. They get two stars instead of one because I was able to contact the property owner easily and quickly and i immediately got the info on the apartment i rented out for my vacation. I've seen so many bad reviews for Homeaway that it alarmed me and sure enough my second time I didn't get the info I needed for my stay from them and had to call the property owner for it. Their app is useless if you don't have a mobile phone, which I don't! Why do I need a ridiculous app to get what I paied for? Just send the info through email! Ridiculous!
THIS WEBSITE IS ONLY A MONEY SEEKER!
The owners of small vacation rentals have a few places to turn in the market to advertise online. HomeAway VRBO, Expedia-whatever you want to call it knows this and are exporting it to the max. They manipulate the listings and do not deliver what they promise-which is booking inquiries and listings.The subscription costs have gone up, new fees are being pushed onto prospective renters and the service and quality of the online interface have gone down tremendously. Without quality properties such as mine to advertise on their website, they would not be a player in this market. I only wish there was somewhere else to turn.
This is just plain corporate greed. Last year I was 80% booked at of today 4/14/16. Currently I have 15 % booked. They tell me its because I am not using their site for secure payments. I pay them to list my sites and Homeaway puts me in a lower rental category. WE NEED A VIABLE OPTION.. Any suggestions.
A phone call to protest the unilateral decision by the Homeaway, Vacation Rentals, VRBO vacation rental listing company to impose up to a 9% fee on our guests said it all. Well sir,
another service charges up to 12%! I responded by noting they don't charge us as owners up to $1,000 per property to list with them and secondly, we don't advertise with that company because we feel they are heavy handed in the charges to the traveler. With Homeaway's suite of listing sites, we have seen a precipitous drop in inquires since the decision was made to simply IMPOSE these fees on our travelers. The net effect is we are paying more for less! If you are considering listing your property with these folks, know that the historical success of listing here has been adversely affected by the company's ill advised money grab. And we know other property owners who are experiencing the same drop off. We are not unique.
We used VRBO.com/Homeaway several times. This last time made me decide to never use them again. We put money down and continuously gave our deposits on time (even early) on a vacation home that we booked 1 year in advance. One week before our trip was to begin the owner called and said there was a major sewer back up. He refunded our money via check (we had paid him through paypal the whole time, but whatever). My husband talked with him a few times after that and his story was changing big time. We ended up finding out that he lied and rented it to someone else for more money. All of the places were booked ( I mean, this was for Spring Break, it is crazy in that location, that is why we booked one YEAR prior!!) We had to stay 40 minutes away and spend double. I strongly advise not using vrbo/homeaway. They protect the owners but not the renters. And, they offer insurance only on refunding your money, not ruining your vacation.
Expedia has purchased VRBO and HomeAway. Last year as a new owner I had 1500 to 1900 visits in Mar and Apr 2015 and filled my summer. So I decided to increase bookings for off season by paying and ad fee of $590 to increase view. This would place me higher. What a bust. Their strategic match has cost me views. I went from 1500 views Mar 2015 to 271 for 2016. I am currently 12 days into April and have 45 compared to 1900 last year for the month. Now I have only 2 bookings from them for the entire summer. There new fee structure is cheaper. Last year they took 10% off my rent for a fee. Now they shifted it to the renter. So I reduced my rate to offset. But leave it to the big companies to take over and mess it up. I am reading on hear that many people are only getting a percentage of views they had from last year. I am getting 1/7 of last year and paying a $590 subscription fee on top. Boy was I suckered. Tried to book more, and now getting 2 bookings. I had to go to a realtor to start filling weeks. I got more emails to join them for their conference then inquiries.
I am disappointed with Homeaway because those places that they announce are only a hook. I tried to book them but they do not respect that price which is on their website. Their excuse is that those prices belong to the low season....why Homeaway asks them to update...Is it not what that website is for? ...i have a nasty surprise about hidden fees and extra taxes and they also began asking for an insurance as much as 1500 or buy one....this place becomes insane.
I have been a rental property owner advertising with HomeAway and VRBO for many many years. Now they are charging my guests, most of whom are repeat renters, a very high fee just to book my cabin. Mind you I pay them $499 annually. Now they're charging my guess as much as 10% for bookings. Their service is terrible, plan to wait on hold at least 10 minutes and many times much longer. Their customer service people are not empowered to help. So what are my guests getting for that ridiculous fees? I don't know but it's not right. Greedy!
My negative review of a property has not been posted even though I have complied with everything asked of me. The property had rodents and was not clean. The homeowner promised a refund in a text message but never followed through. Our attempts at contact with the homeowner then became termed as "stalking." After disputing one half of the charge through our credit card, the homeowner informed our credit card company that everything had been worked out/a refund had been issued -- who knows what -- and we were left with no refund. We attempted to rid the place of what we thought was one mouse but came to find there were many. It was a horrible way to spend a long-awaited vacation with family and friends and paying for a rental home with was definitely not as it was represented! I never care to book through HomeAway or VRBO again.
Stayed in a Homeaway site in palacious texas, It was so dirty that we had to spend two days cleaning up, I have traveled extensively in third world countries. Their sense of cleanly ness and service greatly exceeds HomeAways client. Tried to write a review of the site and they refused to print the review. Only facts were given and no PC incorrectness in the review. Since they refused to accept the review on their site, it is an indication of their desire to control negative data. Stay away from HomeAway, I intend to.
None of my passwords or usernames work anymore...I have Global Bundle packages and even though VRBO bought everyone else you cannot access or transfer your user names or accounts. You can no longer screen your renters...they book it for you. TERRIBLE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I am now inundated with 2 day rental requests and it is not legal to rent for less than a week in our condo building. They also try to stick my renters with a service fee to book my condos. I don't want to charge my renters more money for VRBO!
I booked a three night stay which included a Service Fee of $132. Then I get charged again by Home Away for another $87. There is nothing on the site that explains Home Away charges a fee in addition. I didn't even want to give this a star but I had to otherwise they wouldn't show my rating.
I used to get about 250 rentals from HomeAway every year. They made about $26,000 a year off me in listing fees. In March I got one rental fom them. Between the worst move ever "best match" and now fees to travelers they can't even produce requests for me anymore. Amazing what GREED can do! Sad what they have done to the industy and sad they destroyed VRBO which was such a great company at one time.
Tried 3 times to book properties with HomeAway in the last couple of days. First was advertised as available, booked then declined as already booked. Second was booked, accepted and paid, then cancelled as already booked. Third was booked but owner didn't respond within 24 hours so booking lapsed, nevertheless 2 further payments were made against my credit card. I'm currently trying to get refunds for all the payments and also will hopefully remove my payment details from their system ( uk call 02035143841). In the meantime I'd advise to steer well clear of this company - at best they can be described as incompetent idiots, at worst crooked scammers. BEWARE !!
I was looking for a condo to rent for an upcoming vacation and I discovered HomeAway and VRBO wanted to charge me a 9% "SERVICE FEE" during checkout on their site, plus charging exorbitant fees for the owner. Our son used VRBO as an owner and was charged $1000/year for merely listing the property on their site. Now HomeAway/VRBO also gouges the renter. For charging BOTH the owner and renter ridiculous fees, they merely provide a "bulletin board" for the property. I will be boycotting HomeAway/VRBO, and I will include Expedia in the same boycott, since they now own HomeAway/VRBO. Contact owners directly, and DON'T pay for rentals on any HomeAway/VRBO website (where they "hide" their fee as a SERVICE FEE).
Surprised by the Service Fee.
A few days after booking my vacation thru VRBO I was surprised to see a HomeAway Service Fee drawn. I didn't even realize I went to VRBO thru HomeAway.
I tried calling HomeAway, but they Never pickup after you identify yourself as a Traveler.
Why does Home Away no assist in refunding a down payment when the rental unit does not exist. Even thought hey collect he payments they insist that i must take legal action against the fraudulent renter. I wish could give it 0 stars
I opted out of their latest offerings until they locked me out & prior to that had no enquiries so was blocked, am not renewing end of March as disgusted with their tactics, will use only AIRBNB & FLIPKEY from now on, who are way more transparent, for now anyway, we need new players in the market to challenge these large companies
Tip for consumers: opt out & don't renewAsk James about HomeAway
My husband and I thought about renting an apartment in NYC through Homeaway. After weeks of searching, we started to get a really bad feeling about the properties. We never got a response from a contact person who was an owner, only managers. There were often (apparent) multiple units available in a building, but you couldn't tell if the descriptions and/or pictures matched any of them. When we tried to ask a question, suddenly the apartments weren't available anymore. Then we discovered that NYC had passed an ordinance in 2012 prohibiting short term rentals. We know Homeaway maintains that it is only a conduit between the property owners and possible renters and their terms and conditions maintain they are not responsible to determine whether a homeowner is compliant with licensing and zoning laws. But how would you feel if you booked a rental through Homeaway (or its affiliates) and found out you either couldn't stay there legally and/or safely OR the place was a dump because Homeaway has no mechanism to insure that what an owner says about their property is true? (As an aside, owners violating a prohibition against short term rentals in Asheville, NC, had to cancel reservations when the city shut down the illegal renting.) You think you can trust the listings on Homeaway? Renters, beware!
My family paid a $500 deposit on a house for a vacation this summer. The owner sold the house, the new owner isn't honoring the contract (they already booked someone else for the same dates) and nobody is returning the $500 deposit. HomeAway refuses to help and says their guarantee does not apply. We paid $500 and are not receiving the product/service paid for! I understand the owner is to blame but HomeAway should take some responsibility and at least assist us in pushing the owners to do the right thing.
I list my vacation rental on VRBO and an appalled at the fees they are charging the customers who wish to rent through the site. I posed as a renter, and the least I was quoted as a "service fee" was $400. When I tried to book for a seasonal rental, the amount was $499. This is very disturbing, since the owners pay $349 and up to advertise on the site, and then if a credit card is used VRBO charges the owners anywhere from 2.5 to 3% fee for the service. I have already paid the advertising fee for the year, but I will turn off the auto renew for next year and find another rental site. The other annoying thing is that they listed our condo as being in a different condo complex and I couldn"t change that. I had to contact customer service. I must say I did get an email response within 36 hours and was satisfied with that since they claimed they corrected the issue. What other sites are homeowners looking at to place their listings? I just noticed that Tripping.com does not charge any addtional fees after the listing fee. Sounds good to me white it lasts!
Oh, and just to add one last comment, I have not received one inquiry since this new implementation began! By By VRBO! Update: I have just listed another condo I own with vacationhomerentals.com a Trip Advisor site...check it out!
Tip for consumers: Find another site with lower or no fees! Renters need to take a long look at the charges and realize that the owners are not receiving anything from the eroneous "booking fee."Ask Leslie about HomeAway
VRBO/HomeAway was a great place for regular home owners to contact and rent out their properties to other like minded individuals and travelers. I paid up in advance several hundred dollars to list my property without extra fees added. Suddenly, without more than a 25 day notice an added 9% service fee is added to my customers total bill for the privilege of using the site to find a vacation home to rent. Our long time customers will be given the same treatment. VRBO has done nothing to earn this money from them. It's the conscientious home owners who provide clean and affordable private vacation home accommodations that made this company. HomeAway - now purchased by Expedia - needs to realize that these same owners can also bring the company down. Many of us homeowners who loved using this site are now looking for new alternatives. Why did you have to get greedy? You already are making good money on our listing fees and almost forcing us to accept your credit card processing to be seen on the site. This last 9% fee is the straw that broke the camels back. As soon as I can find a site like VRBO used to be, I along with many others will be switching. In the mean time I HAVE ADDED A NOTE TO MY VRBO/HOMEAWAY LISTING SUGGESTING POTENTIAL CUSTOMERS DEAL WITH ME PERSONALLY TO AVOID THE EXORBITANT FEES, I ENCOURAGE OTHER OWNERS DO THE SAME. MAYBE THIS WILL GIVE VRBO A WAKE UP CALL. Also, this is not a hotel site, we are renting our personal vacation homes. Some of the new booking regulations are practically forcing us to accept guests without the time to do a background check. We owners have everything to lose if we rent to irresponsible guests. VRBO can collect all these new fees with no value added to anyone but themselves and take on virtually no liability for themselves. VRBO was a great company and idea, I'm so sad it's breaking down....
I'm disgusted by the new Homeaway/VRBO service fee and their bullying. I've refused to "opt in" for booking online and my bookings are down dramatically. Not one inquiry in March, though I'm usually fully booked by now.
I won't list again with these sites. What's the alternative? What are other formerly happy users doing?
Unbelievable. I visited that website today for FIVE MINUTES or less, made an inquiry about how many beds in one of the rentals, and 8 hours later, they try sending me a BILL FOR A RENTAL. What the heck? SO GLAD WE DIDN'T RENT WITH THEM. Scary!
I have been advertising on Homeaway and VRBO for over 10 years. They used to place your ad in the list depending on your number. If you were with them for a long time, you had a low number and were higher on the list. Now it goes by how much you pay and whether or not you allow them to hold the money. If you dont, then you are lower on the list. In addition, they block out the phone number and email address. You have to go on the owner site to get this information which takes time.
I recently signed up for vacationhomerentals.com. I am getting good inquiries and bookings from that site! We need to all leave VRBO and Homeaway!! They are NOT the only game in town!
Tip for consumers: Leave Homeaway and VRBO for vacationhomerentals.comAsk Donna about HomeAway
After several years of advertising our property's with homeaway they started in February 2016 charging my renters a fee of between 4 and 9 percent but won't tell us how much the charge will be 4 or 9 or some where in between. Plus we pay in the $500.00 range for a basic site
Big corporate mentality. I am a home owner who rents 2 houses. When I started with VRBO they were charging $399/year/property . Now ( Homeaway and VRBO)they are up to $1499/year /property but WAIT in Feb 2016 they added a service fee of 4-9% to renters. I will be seeking other alternatives to market my property, they are only driven by MONEY. Where does it stop !!!
I'm and ownner that rents our home. I started with VRBO and they were acquirred by HomeAway. The model has always been; pay for annual subscription and you get a website with functionalatily to book your vacation rental, it's been great. Well in Februray of 2016 HomeAway has started charging fees to renters that range from 4 to 9%, this is very frustrating and a poor way to do business. Any inquiry I have had in February has refused to pay the fees. Be aware that booking through HomeAway sites results in additional service fees.
Tip for consumers: Be aware that booking through HomeAway sites results in additional service fees.Ask Ed about HomeAway
As an owner of two properties on VRBO (aka Home Away), we are enraged by their recent policy to start charging our guests a commission, without adding any benefits to them or the owners. They continue to charge us an annual fee, which is what we used to pay for the website service. With Air bnb, we receive homeowner protection, but no discernable benefit from homeaway. They claim that the additional service we get is more advertising. We have not noticed any difference in increased inquiries, but have noticed a deterioration of service via longer wait times to speak to a technician. We would love to see a company continue the old policy of VRBO (annual fee and no fees) and there will be a mass exodus to this new company.
I have several vacation rental properties and have previously enjoyed a great relationship with HomeAway. However, since HomeAway was acquired by Expedia... it has turned into an absolute nightmare. They charge a bogus "Service Fee" which has no added value what-so-ever. Let's just call it what it is... a 9% Rip Off Fee disguised as a "Service Fee". However, as a renter, when you call, they put you on hold for 20 minutes or more and there is really nothing they can do for you if something goes wrong with the property--that is the owner/manager's responsibility. We don't need a middleman in there mucking things up. What they are offering is a false sense of security and nothing more.
A very unhappy advertiser!
We rented the house at 516 Henley circle , davenport , fl.(outside kissiminee , fl.
DON'T DO IT !!!!!
Here are just SOME of the things that are wrong with this unit
Shower is sooooo loud it wakes up people in the other part of the house
The pool was cloudy and buggy
The beds are so bad we had to put the mattress on the floor ; every time a person moves , The noise from the box springs under the KING bed wakes up your partner when ever you move
Other bed are as HARD as sleeping on the floor
No face cloths for washing
No dish cloths
No lock on the screen door to the patio
No lock on the pool screen door
Large burner on the stove , not operating
Cannot get the patio fan to operate
Tip for consumers: DON'T DO IT!!Ask JOHN about HomeAway
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