Welcome to the Vacation Home Help Podcast, the only podcast dedicated to helping vacation rental owners self-manage their properties. Your host delivers short and sweet episodes with actionable advice, tips, and strategies to level up your hosting skills. Whether you are a complete beginner or been in the vacation home rental business for a while, you are in the right place to get the tools you need to succeed. Here are your hosts, John Candelario and Tim Casey.
So today, Tim and I are going to talk about pools. We’re in Florida, everyone has a pool in their vacation rental, but this is for those homeowners who have a pool. And we’re going to explain how to best manage having a pool in your short term rental. So Tim, how do you manage your pool?
Well, this was certainly a learning curve, John, and I made a lot of mistakes during this learning journey. And I wanted to share this with our listener owners so that they don’t make the same mistake.
The first is depending on where your vacation rental is, like in Florida, it gets really hot during the summer and I have to keep the pool water circulating more often. So I keep that pool pump circulating for a longer period of the day than I do during the winter months. That’s number one.
Number two is I only had pool service once a week, but John, as you know, I’ve got a larger home. I’ve got a nine bedroom home and that means I’m going to have probably 14 plus guests. What I learned the hard way is when you’ve got that many people in a pool, the body oil, the suntan lotions, etcetera, really degrade the water quality quickly. So I had to move to two, and in some cases three times a week pool service, just to make sure I was keeping the chemical balance solid so that the guest was getting a sparkling clean pool.
And then third, make sure your pool company is replacing the filter in the pool pump to make sure you’re getting good circulation.
So step one, seasonally adjust how long the pump runs. So you keep the circulation going well. Number two, based on the size of your home and the number of people that you are hosting, you may need to increase the frequency of your pool service to make sure you keep the chemical balance sound. And then number three, make sure that pool company is replacing, cleaning, whatever’s necessary, the pool pump, so you get good flow of water throughout the system.
John, can you think of anything else?
I just like how you talk about frequency because most people think weekly service will do it, but with the amount of turnaround you could have, you’ll have some cloudy and milky water. So it’s good that you do do more frequent service.
I would also want to touch on pool heaters because some people like their pool hot, or at least in the 80s. And if you have a pool heater and you’re offering that, you really need to make sure your operations team or your pool person knows how to set that pool heater and keep it functioning because the worst thing is a guest who expects a hot or warm pool and doesn’t get it. They will be livid. So just making sure the pool heater functions properly and that it’s on prior to their arrival is a big one.
But having maintenance done on your pump and maintenance done on your pool heater is important because you can’t just expect that you bought this new equipment, it’s going to last forever. Things do break. Things need to get replaced. So I do recommend taking the advice of your pool cleaner. And sometimes you may think they have a profit motive to sell you more parts, sell you more maintenance services, but sometimes they’re right, and sometimes you have a dirty filter and it may have been there for a year, but it needs to be replaced. So taking advice from your pool team when things need to get fixed and fixing them quickly so the guest’s experience isn’t interrupted is huge.
And one last tip for our owners and listeners is whatever pool company you select, make sure they send you that report after every service that talks about what are the chemical levels, so that know, and what chemicals did they add. It holds them accountable so that you can be confident they’re actually checking the water quality and adding the appropriate chemicals to make sure the water is sparkling clean.
So, John, it seems like an easy little thing, just a pool, offer a pool and they swim, but there’s a lot more to it. It doesn’t have to be complicated, but you’ve got to think through all these little details to make sure that the guest has a great experience and they come back time and time again.
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