Something is going on with this company maybe they are going out of business? I tried to rent a condo and they locked my account because I forgot the password. Then when I called to get my account unlocked they wouldn't speak to me and said to email them. After three different calls and multiple attempts to email them, they said that there was nothing they could do and I could not speak with the dept that locks the accounts.
I can't find a place to do this on VRBO.
How do you turn off Book it now or Book online. Last year someone said you can do so in your listing.
VRBO is a bad service. Our information was stolen. We were blocked from responding to our prospects. We were forced to make people pay online. BAD SERVICE. No refund was given on my listing. DO NOT LIST YOUR HOME HERE.
I Have Had my Florida vacation rental condo on VRBO's site for 10 years and the changes that have been recently made have been purely for their benefit only and shows to what measures they will take for just pure GREED on their part. I Have cancelled my account and will NEVER return unless they let me have the contact with the guests that I have had in the past! Customer service is useless!!!
This company has no way to contact them or sign up for an account yet wants you to sign in through YOUR Facebook account. Be careful about giving away Facebook information. People get hacked all the time! I'm not saying they are unsafe. Simply watch out for a company that does this.
We had our beautiful cottage in AZ with VRBO for years and loved it! We met lovely new guests, the site was simple for guests and owners. THEY HAVE BEEN TURNED INTO A MONSTER. We don't trust them, and have had 1 new booking since the takeover. We can't communicate with our guests, and we have a sneaking suspicion they are sending fake requests to us. TERRIBLE to have a company working for you that you believe is trying to stab you in the back and take your clients. I have a slimy feeling all-over about this shoddy run operation. How sad.
Simply said, VRBO, or Homeaway, and Vacation Rentals.com, want those they "use" (my home is worth several hundred thousand dollars) to pay for the subscription. There are certain parameters that penalize those, like me, who do not. Basically, if you do not pay for a subscription, they put you in the bottom of the search results. I use to get half my business from Homeaway/VRBO until they changed a while ago to a harsh unequal format, that makes Property Management companies their most important customer, meanwhile leaving me, a owner operated rental, scraping for attention on their site, only due to the algorithms they have set up to reward those who pay for the Subscription, and punish those who do not.
No matter to me, but I do think it is a stupid way of marketing a product. I would call it PAY TO PLAY.
Shame on you. Equal is equal, whether I am an owner operated using your site, or I pay for the subscription. This is sadly not the case currently with VRBO or Homeaway. I use to get a lot of hits off their site, until they changed their algorithms, to make my property not at the top of the list.
I review at 4.9% on VRBO/Homeaway & Airbnb. Airbnb is the best at this point for an owner...by FAR.
I hope Homeaway makes changes to allow "owner operated" be more competitive.
They took $3700 from my VISA. Sent me a confirmation email with no information about the rental. Called a dozen times got passed everywhere. No one could give me the address and a reservation payment receipt to show the front desk, no physical address to even KNOW WHERE TO GO when my wife and two young daughters land in a foreign country! No phone number nothing. When I called the last time 12 hours before leaving to the airport, I got a phone number. I had to write it on a napkin. They said they could not send an email! I have never seen anything like this! WORST WORST WORST! So disorganized.
I had a frightening experience with VRBO. Here are the facts : I booked a property for the price advertised on their website. Then the owner contacted me and asked for more money. I called VRBO and protested : legally, once there is an offer and that offer is accepted, there is a contract. VRBO said they cannot do anything. They simply offer a platform...and charge a salty fee!
I booked a hotel in Belize through VRBO. I got the confirmation e mail with the reservation # and property#. I had no idea the name of the hotel or address. I called VRBO to get the information and they ran circles around me. I had the confirmation # and had already paid!!! They finally gave me the property owners phone number. So much frustration!! How can they book without knowing the name of the resort and what would the motive be of refusing to tell the customer??? I will never book with them again!
I am discontinuing three properties on VRBO and I am shocked with the management decisions this company has made over the past few months. I have found three excellent vacation sites with great traction and no hassle. I am a business owner and proponent of positive change, however, new management or the merger with Home Away has destroyed this business model.....let me tell you why..
For the owner of properties....BEWARE
1. VRBO now holds homeowners security deposits, which belong to the home owner not VRBO. VRBO now controls your Security deposit. Yes, they want the interest income, but they also control "your" issues with your tenants.
2. VRBO now deletes your phone number and the phone number of your renter until the rental is booked. With one property, I have 36 positive reviews with one negative review. The negative review is a result of no verbal communication. Why, phone communication offers you the opportunity to spend quality time determining values of your guest and also making sure your property fits the requirements of your quests. This eliminates disputes, damage and creates long lasting repeat customers. This one guest did not read our description, which most do not, and complained that our home was isolated and not close enough to town and supermarkets (10 min away). This is what makes our mountain estate special with stream, privacy, waterfall, etc. and we communicate this attribute to all guests on the phone.
3. VRBO will tell you that eliminating the phone numbers is a benefit to both parties to protect against fraud and you are able to cancel the reservation after they book. Great, you can cancel the reservation, but they also still charge the credit card fee!
4. I have a property manager who has worked with VRBO managing our account for over two years. Last week she contacted VRBO and they wouldn't communicate with her. They wanted another letter, notarized, by me providing her authority....you have got to be kidding me as she has been with us for two years communicating directly. Also, when I called yesterday, I could barely understand the customer service representative. So unfortunate.
As a home owner, I have reached out to management of VRBO on several occasions and they will not offer modifications. As a result, the only way to express your dissatisfaction is to eliminate your homes on VRBO and try another site. Its a shame, since VRBO customers will miss a $6 million island home, $3 million 200 acre mountain retreat and $800k mountain house. There are plenty of quality sites and now I have multiple sites with tremendous traction.
When you search on VRBO for vacation rentals in a particular town their website shows you about 5 or 6 different towns and even includes hotel rooms! No wonder my bookings have decreased 80% this year. This is false advertising/lying. Here is an example: I searched on Keaau, HI and it shows me Hilo, Hi, Pahoa, HI, Volcano, HI, etc. which makes competition for listings outrageous. Since this change, I receive no bookings only scammers contacting me.
I trusted vrbo to rent my house and recently rented it to someone who not only trashed my home but stole several thousand dollars of property. Then, apparently VRBO accepted a fraudulent credit card for this rental and charged me for it. They offer no value or help whatsoever. Do not let them do this to you!!! P,ease learn from my very expensive mistake.
VRBO recently changed their online rental practices....without notifying property owners. Customer service is terrible, no one knows what they are talking about, different answers each time a call is made, and NO ONE SPEAKS ENGLISH as a first language. VRBO has cost me thousands because of their inability to communicate effectively.
After a terrible experience with VRBO, Homeaway and a host of other websites owned by Expedia, which has become an industry consolidated, I decided to exercise the great American prerogative and try the competition. I decided to try TripAdvisor where I had an equally bad experience and guess what, all these entities are controlled by Barry Diller so I wasn't going to the competition after all. There are only two companies (a duopoly) which now dominate the vacation home rental business. One is Expedia and the other is Airbnb. Of two bad choices Airbnb is the better choice. Since the vacation home rental websites like Expedia are now able to price gouge a vacation home owners rental Co-op would probably be the best solution to what is now a very uncompetitive online marketplace. Managing a Co-op can still be a very lucrative career for an entrepreneur looking for a great niche.
Terrible first time experience, and will never used VRBO again.
We cancelled 2 months prior to our stay, since their policy stated we would get a full refund within that time. The property managers had asked for a $526 deposit when we booked, and there was NO option to book through VRBO- and the property managers had asked us to Paypal us the deposit.
Upon cancelling, property managers refused to return our deposit, and VRBO had told us it's our fault for paying outside of VRBO, even though there was no option to pay within the site. The property listing is still up on VRBO, and the rental managers had no repercussions..
It's a completely irresponsible business with no care or safety for the customer. I'm sure Airbnb would have handled this completely differently. Won't be using VRBO ever again.
We rented the Traveler's Retreat in Tualatin Oregon and had to cancel less than 30 days from arriving since my husband went into the hospital. We stayed at this place last year so the owners knew us. We understand the cancellation policy was strict but the owners were able to rebook so they received double money. We contacted the owner to see if we could get a partial refund or at least some credit and they did not respond. VRBO has a policy that we can not write a review about this on their site since we never officially stayed there this year even though we have stayed there in the past. I think prospective renters should know that the owners of this property were greedy to take our $700 4 months before the check-in date & also charge someone new who stayed there.
AVOID THIS SITE. I have made 2 reservations, both canceled after they charged by credit card. they owner then demanded more days or different dates of the stay. This site in nothing but scammers!
I have been a VRBO host for almost a year and not been impressed. Lost payments, no customer service, website slow, the list goes on and on. I have also had mediocre experiences with Airbnb as a host but good ones as a traveler. So this time I decided to try using VRBO as a guest to see what they are like. It was horrible. The place we rented was called Rural Ridge Cottage near Charlottesville VA. When we got there the place was covered in mouse poop and we saw two mice scurry when we walked through the door. Then we noticed the stinkbugs, then the ants and we decide to contact the owners. Their response was it doesn't get used during the week so it's normal to have 'visitors' when you first arrive, but 'they'll go away' Well the place was so disgusting that we couldn't stay there. So far VRBO has been no help and we are out $1000 for the labor day weekend. I am cancelling my listing with VRBO and will never use them again. Airbnb has problems and some hosts have garbage properties but at least they are there to help, unlike VRBO
Tip for consumers: Avoid VRBO at all costs
I have utilized VRBO a ton. For the most part as a very late rental and have had achievement. The vast majority of proprietors are anything but difficult to work with. Now and again tho the underlying value looks great yet then they hit you with huge amounts of expenses so pay special mind to this.
I had a bad experience with a rental on Owasco Lake, Auburn, NY, on VRBO. VRBO's response to me and my experience was virtually non-existent and obviously Owner-centric. I had to file a compalint in small claims court to try to get any consideration. I would be happy to provide details, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Im a seasoned vacation rental host and a vacation traveler reading through a significantly high number of recently submitted negative reviews about vrbo.com and I would like to know why there isn't already a huge class-action lawsuit being brought on by all the unhappy and ripped off property owners and managers of properties advertising on this site, as well as the travelers and guests that pay unreasonably high hidden booking and service fees, with all control in the hands of vrbo.com, and very little to no control by the actual property owners? Seriously! Maybe a class-action lawsuit win by owners and travelers, where the deep pockets lose and put some of our money back where it should have gone or stayed in the first place, will stop the madness and we can all get back to hosting and vacationing!
Customer Questions & Answers
There are many problems with listing with VRBO/HomeAway. The 1st is that it is the largest company of it's size. While that may mean that you get more exposure, you also have more competition for getting your listing seen. For example, your listing could be # 300 out of 2,000. Most people don't want to search that far to find what they want because they can usually find something else sooner. In order to get a higher listing, you must pay more. I pay the highest rates they have for my properties in TN # 191351, 189535, & 289723, i.e. over $1,500 each. Listing position is also based on a number of criteria which they mandate. We have no control over some of those criteria. For example, listing position is based on whether or not guests USE VRBO/HomeAway on line booking. Initially, .VRBO/HomeAway required that we OFFER on line booking in order to maximize our listing position, so I offered it. VRBO/HomeAway then changed their criteria & now guests must USE on line booking in order or my listing position drops. I have no control over whether or not they USE VRBO/HomeAway & I don't recommend it for several reasons (more on that if you're interested). Listing positions are also determined by the number & quality of reviews. Again, I have no control over whether or not someone writes a review nor how they rate a property. What may be a 5 Star for someone may only be a 3 Star for someone else, but I'm at their mercy to provide a review & to rate it well. There are many other factors that go into listing position. As I said, I try to maximize what I can & If I'm luck, my property will be listed around 50/200. I get much better response from FlipKey by TripAdvisor. As I mentioned, I pay VRBO/HomeAway over $1,500 for each property. I Pay FlipKey by TripAdvisor about $450/property for #'s 6588094, 2386143, & 3746421 & get much better results. The problem with FlipKey is that it's hard for someone to search for a specific property using the property #.
Vrbo will NOT get involved in any way. They will not arbitrate on anyone's behalf. They are strictly an advertising website. Carefree travel insurance & all the other stuff is just to make renters feel more comfortable to rent. They hardly ever pay out if there is a real problem. You can sue in small claims court, in the city & state you rented in. The only defense you have is if you paid with a credit card to do a charge back, & even then its hard. You have to have documentation to prove you case. However, vrbo won't contest the chargeback if you can get your credit cad company to work with you. Best to leave a review that warns other renters to stay away. But vrbo approves the reviews before they are posted.
A: NEVER, EVER DEAL WITH ANY OWNERS OR PROPERTY MANAGERS THAT YOU HAVENT SPOKEN TO DIRECTLY. NEVER use any form of payment other than credit card. All CC's would refund you the money if you don't get the services. If they don't accept cards or allow payment through Homeaway, FIND ANOTHER PROPERTY OWNER WHO WILL or be prepared to take the chance. READ all reviews, if they don't have any you ARE taking a chance it's a scam or a dump (or a new property but be careful. NEVER make a large deposit EVER! VRBO has turned out to be reliable for us, never used Flipkey and AirBnB wouldn't use it - I want a large property not a room room share
VRBO will not help anymore with anything. Homeaway bought them and there is no personal contact with owners anymore until they pay through the site. I don't know about negative reviews. Never see any. If there was a way to avoid VRBO and Someway I would do it; but they have the corner on the VACA rental market now.
The owners, vrbo is just a listing site. Its the honor system. They have carefree insurance, but you can only stay two hours to get a "supposed refund". But you have to find other accommodations at your expense. Protect yourself by paying with a credit card. Amex is the best for customer support. Vrbo will not get involved or intervene on either parties behalf. A charge back with lots of documentation & photos is what you will need. You must do this asap as credit cards have a time limit on charge backs. I had to fight, but got more than half my money back, payed in two installments, the first payment was to old to recoup my losses. We suffered from a bait & switch.
Go with the standard listing if you have already paid. If not save your money and try homeescape.com. Homeaway/VRBO rolled out a new 9% service fee charged to your customers in addition to what you're already paying for. They did this without any warning to their customers. I found out after one of my repeat guests questioned the charge. I'm moving away from them and going with other options.
I don't think that you can, but I as property owners, we have little control over what is accessible, so that is a question that you should probably ask Home Away/VRBO. However, it isn't real easy to find a way of contacting them.
Same issue for us. The house we rented had glowing reviews and when I tried to post an honest review it still has not been posted.
I have had our condo on VRBO for years and most of renters pay with personal check. But I am also very quick to call and talk to renters in person and let them know they can pay via credit card or even PayPal. Obviously we prefer check because of the crazy PayPal fees, but we will do it if the renter feels more comfortable. As others have stated, everyone has to get their first rental. If you are concerned I would call and talk to the owner in person.
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