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Frequently Asked Questions

 
 

About VacationRentalsToGo

 
 

How does VacationRentalsToGo differ from the other vacation rental listing services?

The simple answer is that we give you more for less - in fact, a lot less! The truth of the matter is that other vacation rental listing service typically charge "whatever the traffic will bear". Many vacation rental listing services are simply trying to charge the most they can squeeze from the wallets of their customers.

At VacationRentalsToGo, we are using an entirely different approach. Like any business, we need to make enough money to fund the operation, but we don't need to gouge our customers to do so. VacationRentalsToGo offers all the same features that most other vacation rental listing service offers. Our pledge is that anyone who signs up this year, will never see a price increase! Whether you are renting your property 5 or 10 years from now, you will pay the same "practically free" rate of $9.95 per year.

Many Vacation rental listing services charge extra for "premium", "platinum" or "gold" memberships. Many even charge you extra to move your listing up in the rankings or for a "featured" listing. At VacationRentalsToGo you can forget about all those fancy-sounding plans or having to ever pay anything extra. All listings are treated the same - all listings are randomly rotated to the top of the display order and all listings are randomly cycled through our Featured Listings section on the home page.

Vacation Rentals ToGo .com - more for less!

 
 

Listing Your Rental

 
 

What are the steps to get my property listed on VacationRentalsToGo?

  1. Create an account by clicking the List Rental link here (or at the top of the page). All you need to enter to create an account are your email address, a password of your choosing and a password recovery answer.
  2. After the account is created, login to your account at Owner Login, then click the link titled "Add A New Vacation Rental Listing To This Account".
  3. You will be prompted for the location of your property and the associated data for your property. Enter the data for your property. Keep in mind that you may save your data at any time by clicking the Submit Button at the bottom of the data entry form. You may then come back at any time and update your data for a one week period.
  4. After the listing is created, click the link titled "Upload and Manage Pictures" to upload as many pictures as you wish. You may review your listing and make any desired changes by clicking "Edit This Listing".
  5. Once you are satisfied with the appearance and content of the listing, click the link titled "Purchase and Renew Listings" to make your payment. You have seven days from the time you first create your listing to preview it and make changes to it before committing to a purchase.

How do potential renters contact me?

Renters may contact you directly by telephone or via the "Contact Owner" form on your listing, which sends you an email. Please keep in mind that your personal contact information (phone number, personal website link) is not displayed on your listing until the listing has been purchased. Likewise, your listing cannot receive inquiries until the listing has been purchased.

May I add photos to my listing?

Absolutely! You may add as many pictures as you wish. In fact it is highly recommended that you have at least several high-quality pictures that show your property as advantageously as possible. Keep in mind that your listing is "selling" your property to potential renters. Nothing is as effective as good-quality pictures in accomplishing this. Make sure your pictures are taken on sunny days, preferably in the summer (when the vegetation is in bloom). When taking indoor pictures open the blinds and curtains and also use a flash. You want your property to appear open, airy, light and inviting. Also, be sure to include pictures of attractions such as the view from your property, nearby marinas, golf courses, mountains, beaches, pools, shopping, restaurants, etc. Keep in mind that visitors may not have a good idea what is nearby, so that is part of what you want to describe. While it is important that your property is clean, attractive and inviting, renters to do not spend every minute inside - show them what a great place your location is to visit!

What size pictures should I upload?

You may upload any size picture to your listing, but be aware of a few considerations. You should avoid uploading any small (i.e. thumbnail) pictures. The reason for this is that a small picture is expanded to fill the VacationRentalsToGo picture viewer (400 pixels wide by 300 pixels high). Therefore, any picture smaller than this will result in distorted pictures that look "fuzzy". Uploading very large pictures that are several Mb or larger will give you nice crisp pictures, but large pictures also take longer to upload and process. Ideally, if you know how to resize pictures, uploading a picture that is about 800 pixels wide by 600 pixels high will give you a sharp image and a quick upload and processing time.

How do I edit my listing?

Login to your account and click the "Edit this listing" link. You may enter a replacement value into any field, or a new value into an empty field. When done, scroll to the bottom of the data entry form and click the Submit button.

How do I change my contact email address, password and telephone number?

Login to your account and click the "Update my profile" link. Please note that your account username may not be changed interactively. If you wish your account username to be changed to any other valid email address, please Contact Us. Also, please note that you may additionally specify a secondary email address to receive inquiries on each listing. This allows two different parties to receive inquiries, such as spouses or agents & owners.

I do not see my city - can I still list my property?

Yes, that is no problem. Simply login to your account, then select the link titled "Add a new vacation rental listing to this account". You will be prompted to identify the property's location. When you arrive at the city selection, if your city is not on the list of existing cities, you may add your city using the form near the bottom of the page. Be careful that you spell your city correctly, as you will not be able to reverse the operation if an error is made. If an error does occur, please Contact Us. Any city added to the list must be a legitimate city. If the city is not found in Google Maps or the US Postal Service website, it is subject to deletion.

Is there a direct URL to my listing?

Yes, the URL for your listing will be www.VacationRentalsToGo.com/YourPropertyIdNumber (example: www.VacationRentalsToGo.com/37181)

What is the cost to list a vacation rental on VacationRentalsToGo?

We charge $9.95 per year per listing. This price will neve increase for listings posted this year.

Does VacationRentalsToGo offer discounts for multiple listings?

No. All listings cost the same "practically free" price of $9.95 per year. Our pricing philosophy is to offer the lowest, full-service pricing of any vacation rental listing service.

May I include more than one property on a listing?

No, this is not permitted.

What should I do if I receive a suspicious inquiry?

Inquiries with poor grammar, spelling, improper use of capital letters should raise a "red flag". If the inquiry is missing a telephone number, has an overseas telephone number or comes from a free service such as gmail, hotmail or yahoo, that is also a potential red flag. Quite often a scammer will concoct a story about "providing a honeymoon for a godson" or traveling via a "church sponsored trip". Unfortunately, there is no 100% certain way to spot a fraudulent inquiry, as legitimate renters may also have free email accounts or not be very careful when composing an inquiry. In general, if you suspect a fraudulent inquiry, it may be in your best interest to ignore it. Some scam artists want nothing more than to capture your email address, which they can do by receiving your response. If you have your phone number posted on your listing, a legitimate renter can always call you if they have not heard from you.

VacationRentalsToGo monitors inquiry traffic and will block scam artists once a determination has been made that inquiries are not legitimate. However, some inquiries may be sent to owners before such a determination can be made.

 
 

Avoiding Frauds and Scams

 
 

What can I do to protect myself from fraud or surprises as either a renter or owner?

Unfortunately, given the prevalence of fraud on the internet in this day and age, one should probably start from a position that every transaction is potentially fraudulent, then take steps to satisfy oneself that it is indeed legitimate. Too often we hear of cases in the news where innocent people are victimized by just assuming that all is well and being too trusting. Take positive steps to establish the legitimacy of the other party and walk away from any transaction that does not pass your tests. Below are some general guidelines and ideas for establishing a satisfactory comfort level.

The general advice we have for renting parties is to try to make payment via a credit card or PayPal. Electronic payment gives both parties some assurance of legitimacy and some dispute recourse. Many owners, though, do not have a merchant account to collect by credit card, but every owner can use PayPal. Using PayPal, though, requires some setup time, as the account needs to be verified. There is also a 4% fee charged to the person who receives the money. But even payment made electronically is not a guarantee. We have heard of some scam cases where a renter will pay via a credit card or PayPal, will stay at the property, then will subsequently file a fraudulent claim for a refund. This can leave the owner having to defend a dispute that he or she may not win. For an owner, probably the safest payment method is via a check that has plenty of time to clear. When accepting payment by check, do not ever refund any "excess payments", as this is a common scam. When a renter pays by check, make sure it is for the correct amount and that you allow at least several weeks for the check to be cleared by your bank. Also, be wary of request for payment through Western Union. Western Union is used by some scam artists who will try to convince you that it is safer than wiring money to a bank account.

We do recommend that renters ask the owner for references of tenants who have rented from him/her in the past. Contact the renters (preferably by phone) and satisfy yourself that they legitimately rented the unit and are not just a "front" for a scam artist. Another simple check is whether or not the owner has a free email account such as Hotmail or Yahoo as opposed to a paid account such as Comcast or Verizon. While all free accounts are obviously not fraudulent, a paid account is an indication that an owner has established an account with an internet service provider where some level of authentication has presumably occurred. Another check that can be made by either party is to Google the owner\'s or renter\'s phone number. While every number is not listed, if the number that has been given by the owner or renter matches the published name and number, that adds to the credibility. Renters should also check sites such as Vacation Rentals Watchdog for any negative information.

Owners wishing to do a credit check or a criminal background check on prospective renters have access to numerous online resources. Searching Google for "landlord credit checks", for instance, will return multiple websites that charge roughly $10 to $20 for basic information.

Owners and renters should insist on a written contract that is clear and contains the names, addresses and phone numbers of both parties. We recommend proceeding with caution where either party insists on payment via a money order, bank transfer or cashier\'s check that cannot be verified or traced and the time horizon is short. While all transactions involving a cashier\'s check are not fraudulent, the potential exists. Do not ever accept a cashier\'s check in excess of the required amount where the "excess funds" are requested to be sent to the payer, as this is a common scam. In the case of a bank transfer request, we recommend trying to get the name and phone number of the bank receiving the funds, so that you can call them to verify the identity of the account holder. We recommend that you investigate any request to wire money to the owner\'s accountant or agent, as they can also be fronts for a scam artist. We recommend that you be extremely cautious when transferring money out of the country, as your recourse is severely limited for foreign transactions. If you are not comfortable with the transaction, or it does not feel right for any reason, we recommend that you do not proceed. Better to walk away from a legitimate rental and rent another, than to give your money to a scam artist and arrive at the vacation destination with no place to stay.

Other signs that you may getting involved in a questionable situation are if the property owner accepts your deposit, then switches units or tells you the unit is no longer available for the dates you requested. Our experience is that this just leads to further complications and you are better off terminating the agreement. Be on the alert for negative signs, like the address of the unit published on the website does not match that of the unit in the rental agreement, the owner never answers the phone at the number supplied or the phone always goes to voicemail. Keep your "common sense" radar alert.

In this day and age, one can never be too careful. While the evidence supports the fact that the overwhelming majority of vacation rentals are very positive for both the owner and the renter, there is always the potential for fraud. And always keep in mind the old adage that if it seems too good to be true, it probably is.

 
 

Technical Questions

 
 

Why are my pictures "fuzzy"?

This is usually caused by uploading a picture that is smaller than 400 pixels wide by 300 pixels high. If you have uploaded a "thumbnail" image, it gets stretched to the 400 x 300 size, which will cause distortion. The solution is to delete the "fuzzy" image and re-upload a picture that is at least 400 x 300 pixels in size (or larger).

Why do some features not work on the website?

Verify that you have JavaScripting enabled. This website requires that JavaScript be enabled for all features to function correctly. Enabling JavaScript for this website is not a security issue. The default for all modern browsers is to have JavaScripting enabled, but some users turn off this feature.

 
 

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Excalibur Properties LLC