the low cost villa advertising service


General tip for when you book flights, car ferries and car hire on line

In case you give the wrong email address for your booking confirmation, print off the transaction page with the booking reference and details of the booking so that you have an additional copy. It is also an idea to save that on your computer

1) PRICES: Make sure that the price is competitive If the rental is too high it will not attract visitors.Ensure that the prices are kept up to date on your entry on

2) LOCAL AGENT: If you do not live near the holiday property, you must employ a good local agent who can check your visitors in and out,arrange cleaning, routine repairs and replacements, arrange linen hire or a laundry service and keep an eye on the property when it is not occupied.

The agent should be able to provide a "Welcome Pack" if you want to provide one — bottles of wine for example or more if the visitors are arriving late. You should provide your agent with the visitor's contact details and vice versa so that they can contact the agent if they are delayed or lost. The agent can of course be a friend or relative living locally, but it should be a business relationship and the agent should be paid.

3) RENTAL AGREEMENT: If you are letting a holiday property in France you must provide a written agreement. In other countries, although it might not be a legal requirement it is advisable so that your terms of rental are clearly agreed.
The document need only be 2/3 pages in length and include the names of the visitors, the dates of the rental.The amount of damage deposit you are going to hold, The rental price, cancellation of rental charges. Additional costs e.g. electricity, linen hire etc.

A clause stating that if a local agent has to meet the visitors at an unsocial hour, then any additional costs paid to the agent will be paid by the renter. If it is a legal requirement in the country concerned that the renter takes out insurance, then add it into the agreement.(see 11 Payment of Rent below)

4) INVENTORY: It is essential that you have an inventory of the contents that can be checked in with your guests. Either the owner or local agent should politely point out that if the visitors break equipment,if they are glasses for example then they should replace, if it is more serious — bed, window etc, then immediately report it.

5) DIRECTIONS TO PROPERTY: Make sure the directions to the property are very clear. List any landmarks (Restaurants or Cafes/pubs, churches for example) and remember that many holiday properties can be slightly off the beaten track and numbers on properties are not too clear. Take in account that occaisonally visitors will arrive after it is dark.

6) PROPERTY HANDBOOK: Provide a ring bound folder with some notes about the property — how the hot water system works, where the rubbish should be put, information on local shops,restaurants and attractions etc.

7) INSURANCE: You must make sure that your property is properly covered for holiday lettings.You should advise the insurance company that it is being let for this purpose.In some countries (France for example) the people renting must also take out insurance by law,but you must also be covered. If you are looking for a policy visit our Insurance section.

8) LOCAL REGULATIONS: You should ensure that your property complies with the country regulations for safety issues.
In Britain for example a holiday home must have furniture that complies with the fire & furnishing safety regulations and displays the appropriate safety label. There are also gas and safety regulations in certain countries.If in doubt talk to the local Tourist Office in the area your property is located in.

In France, rental properties with more than 5 bedrooms are legally classified as a small hotel. Hotels are classified as public buildings requiring specific fire protection such as fire doors and officially approved smoke alarms. These regulations are enforced by the Mairie. Although there is no specific legislation for fire safety in in private properties or rental properties with less than five bedrooms in France, in any country the owner must have a duty of care to his/her guests and install basic fire protection such as smoke detectors, fire blankets and fire extinguishers. It is suggested that the emergency services numbers are included in any Property Handbooks.

9) TAX: It is advisable to consult an Accountant regarding any tax liability from letting out your holiday property. If you invest in overseas property you must declare the profits in the UK. Unless you are classified as non-UK domiciled, you are taxed in the UK on all your income and gains wherever these profits arise. If you let your overseas property you should inform the tax authorities where the property is located, which will sometime mean completing a tax return in that country. The income and expenses from your foreign property must be listed on the foreign income pages of UK tax return. Any foreign tax you pay on that income can normally be off-set against the UK Tax due where a double taxation agreement exists between the UK and the country where the property is situated. Remember other countries have different rules for tax deductible expenses. Take professional help.

10) SATELLITE TELEVISION SYSTEMS: If you are providing satellite television remember that a lot of European countries (or parts of them) can no longer receive BBC — ITV — Channel 4 and 5 via the old SKY system since early February 2014 when the footprint was narrowed. SKY channels might still work, however in countries like Spain and Portugal owners might have to consider using TV via the Internet. Unlike with a standard satellite system this means a phone line and equivalent of broadband be available with a high speed. Have Internet can be an advantage for guests by also having a wifi system. If your property is in France and you use the French system TPS, take note that they will only reply to correspondence addresses in France or Monaco and communication with them can be very difficult. There are many companies in France, Spain and Portugal for example who can offer a satelite system that contains some channels in English. Look through specific travel and property magazines or search on the web

11) AVAILABILITY: Ensure that the Availability dates are kept up to date on your entry on

12) PRESENTATION (for web photos — brochure) Make sure that you submit good clear photos of the property. Sun shining on it, blue skies help. Make it look more inviting. Consider having the dining table set, a bottle of wine on the table as well. Beds should be made up, leave the television on and internal lights as well (particularly lamps on tables and units that can be seen in the picture). Try to avoid having people in the photos. If you need extra ideas, just take a look at some of the property lifestyle magazines available in newsagents in most European countries. We have prepared a guide for owners of longer term letting properties and similar rules will apply for self catering vacation rentals — But they will naturally have to be fully furnished CLICK HERE FOR DETAILS

13) PRE — LETTING CLEANING: -Make sure the property is clean and tidy before the guests arrive. At we have received complaints that the property was dirty and even someone still in there when a guest arrived in the early afternoon. Make arrangements to have the property cleaned thoroughly in between lets and if it stays vacant for a while between a let, have it cleaned before the new guests move in.

14) PAYMENT OF RENT & RENTAL SCAMS: Do take great care when accepting rental payments. Some people are able to accept credit card bookings, but for the majority they are dependent on payment by bank transfer or when the guests arrive. There are people out there who have no intention of "actually staying" at your property. They only want to try and make a booking so that you refund them their "overpayment". This is is becoming a very worrying issue and we suggest you take a look at:. INFORMATION ON RENTAL SCAMS — this most important subject — VISIT OUR SECTION ON RENTAL SCAMS IN HOLIDAY RENTAL HOMES CLICK HERE.

15) SWIMMING POOLS: Remember that many countries now have specific rules for swimming pools (alarms / fencing in France). Ensure you are properly insured, arrange for a regular maintenance contractor to check it and if it is a Communal pool remember to advise your renter guests that it could be closed for a maintenance project during their stay. There are occasions when they have to be drained or r-tiled and will be out of use for several days)

16) RECORD KEEPING FOR PROPERTY OWNERS: As a property owner ou are required to maintain complete records of all expenses incurred and the income received from your properties. This means that you must hang onto every relevant receipt and keeping details of any personal assets you used for the property business. An example of this would be to note down the details of all journeys you make concerning your property's business, the portion of your home used to process related paperwork and time spent on your computer carry out work for the property.

You should retain all bank statements and all records have to be retained for five years after the tax return filing date. Any receipts regarding property improvements should be kept for six years after the end of the tax year in which the property is sold. If you don't keep tax related records you could face a UK fine of £3,000.

Take great care — if someone is making a booking well into the future, the ideal situation is to obtain a booking deposit at the time of booking and the balance two months before they are due to arrive. Stipulate those terms in your rental agreement and also on ay printed booking forms. Be careful if someone wants a long rental and is asking for just a room, again look at that page on "RENTAL SCAMS".

17) REGISTER YOUR PROPERTY FOR TOURIST RENTALS: in Spain, Greece and Portugal. The local authority requires a licence. If you don't the property owner risks a fine — €3,000 to €30,000 in Spain for example. Apparently depending on the location the owner might also have to present passport details of the paying guests at a local police station. As regulations in different countries continue to be updated do check in the country that your holiday let is located in.

Good luck with your holiday lettings and if you have any further tips for property owners to be added here, please email them to us.

Please note this guide has been compiled from experience and takes no responsibility for the accuracy of its content. jml Property Services taks no responsibility for any bookings or dealings between a renter and a property owner

©jml property Services

Click here to view our terms and conditions

Looking for Low Cost Travel Insurance -or — Emergency Holiday Home Travel Insurance? visit our Insurance section

Holiday Home Property Insurance for France, Spain, Portugal, Greece, Italy, Ireland, Germany, Belgium, Holland, Denmark, Sweden, Malta, Cyprus, England, Scotland and Wales — visit our Holday Home Insurance section.

See also

Who's Been Sleeping in My Bed – The Problems of Sharing Your Holiday Home with Paying Guests — Artcle CLICK HERE.

jml Press Releases CLICK HERE

Renting a car?

SAVE MONEY on the Insurance by paying an Annual Car Hire Excess Insurance visit our Insurance section.

For Car Rental — CLICK HERE

Hotel Accommodation

LOOKING FOR A HOTEL TO RENT IN EUROPE ? Thousands to choose from in all prices categories. Easy to use search facility — CLICK HERE

Air Travel Service



Information for Renters CLICK HERE

November 2006 — New EU hand baggage restrictions

The European Union has adopted new security rules that restrict the quantity of liquids, gels and pastes passengers may carry in their cabin baggage, effective immediately

The new rules apply to all passengers travelling from any EU airport and it’s important to familiarise yourself with these new regulations.

There are two exceptions to the rules:

Exempt items must also be placed in a separate transparent re-sealable bag and presented separately at the passenger security screening area.

The above information New EU hand baggage restrictions is supplied by a third party and jml Property Services do not take any responsibility to its accuracy ©jmlpropertyservices 11/06