7 Key Tips on How to Find the Perfect Home Away from Home in California

Small wooden house with umbrella beach - concept imageyuhCalifornian hotels offer you all the features and amenities that you could ever need to create wonderful memories in picturesque places. However, tourists who want to relax on vacation without actually breaking their routine and abandoning their daily habits will most likely try to rent a home away from home, instead of booking a hotel room.

7 Steps to Take to Find the Ideal Vacation Rental in California

If you also love your privacy more than anything else and would very much like to spend a weekend, a week or a month on a superb property that you could call home, keep reading to find out how you could select the ideal vacation rental in California rapidly and absolutely stress-free.

  1. Opt for a Property That Turns Every Day Spend inside the House into a Small Vacation. When you own a vacation home, you seldom get to enjoy the first week of the season simply because you are too busy doing repairs and improving the looks of your indoors and outdoors. A house is not a hotel room; it requires constant supervision and regular maintenance work. On the other hand, a vacation rental can offer you the privacy, comfort and homey ambiance that a hotel could never provide, in spite of its good name, privileged location and luxurious amenities. Research your options and go in favor of a vacation rental with great scenery, large, airy rooms, plenty of storage space, basic amenities and a fully furnished kitchen. These are the key attributes of a practical and appealing home away from home that never disappoints.
  2. Start Early. Most people start planning their summer vacation during the cold season, right after New Year’s Eve. You should also know that some of the most popular vacation destinations in California, like Napa Valley for instance, attract a large number of loyalists- people who have been spending their holidays in the same place for years or decades in a row. These clients usually book the same apartment or house and profit from significant discounts for early booking. You could follow in their footsteps to benefit from an additional discount. At the end of the day, planning in advance could be the key to staying organized and saving money before, during and after your vacation.
  3. Don’t Hesitate to Play the Waiting Game. Some families don’t like to make long-term plans simply because they can’t foresee the future and are worried that a series of unpredicted events could interfere with their vacation plans. If this sounds like one of your biggest concerns, don’t worry. Even if you don’t want to book a vacation rental in advance, you could still get a considerable discount by searching for attractive last-minute deals. In some of the most popular vacation destinations supply usually outweighs demand. As we get closer to the high season, landlords and agents boost their efforts to fill vacancies. Some choose to cut down costs, while others agree to add certain perks to make the overall package seem more desirable. If you can afford to be flexible and spontaneous, keep your options open when it comes to selecting the best vacation rental. Use its location as filter and perform a targeted search with Apartment Hunterz. The online platform offering the best tools and means of communication for landlords will help you identify and compare the hottest new listings in a timely fashion, without having to leave your home or office to tour, rate and rent different properties. Searching for last-minute offers is a reward versus risks kind of game, so take your chance, start looking for affordable Californian rentals a few days or weeks before your trip and don’t get your mind and heart set on a particular slice of real estate; by staying emotionally detached you could evaluate the pros and cons of different accommodation options in a more objective manner and go for the offer that makes more sense to you from a practical and financial standpoint.
  4. Select a Great Property Based on Your Goals and Actual Necessities. Will you be travelling with your four-legged companion? In this case, you may want to narrow down your search by targeting only the properties offering pet-friendly accommodation options. If you’re planning a fun, relaxing vacation with your youngsters, make sure the rooms that you wish to book will give you access to a great variety of kid-friendly sites and attractions, including playgrounds and parks. If you’ll be travelling with small children, you may want to reserve a house or apartment that has already been baby-proofed. Even the simplest additions, like baby gates for stairs can help you attain peace of mind, knowing that your new environment won’t expose your youngest family members to considerable safety risks.
  5. Get All the Details Before Signing on the Dotted Line. Always read the fine print and ask for additional information on key aspects that may be on your mind, such as cancellation policy, repair and cleaning services, furnishings, property insurance, deposits, physical layout, financial arrangements and so on. At the end of the day, it is extremely important to communicate with your landlord in an effective manner, to understand the rights and obligations that you have as a tenant and keep your side of the bargain. If you have the distinctive impression that you could be forced to change your vacation plans in the near future, remember that renting an apartment is not like reserving a hotel room. When renting someone else’s house, binding contract compels you to cancel your reservation within a week or even one month to benefit from a full refund.
  6. Use All The Information Provided by Vacation Rental Websites. These days, you can spot a good deal on the local real estate market without driving around town and knocking on other people’s doors. At the same time, you can use different tools and platforms to find out what previous tenants are saying about certain landlords and properties that might interest you. Use their feedback to simplify your selection and remember to consult multiple sources before making a final call.
  7. Use the Data Provided by California’s Premier Apartment Finding Service. As soon as you figure out where you would like to spend your vacation, start looking for stunning vacation rentals in your price range. Rely on Apartment Hunterz to compare and save different listings, get in touch with homeowners who are renting out their places and select the accommodation option that meets all your expectations.

How to Choose an Exceptional Vacation Rental in California

Beach HomesVacation rentals are constantly gaining popularity among families and independent travelers, due to their affordability, welcoming ambiance and overall versatility. Just because you want to leave your worries behind and explore another city or town for a few days or weeks, this doesn’t mean that you have to forfeit the comfort of your home.

Find the Best Vacation Rental in 6 Easy Steps

As a matter of fact, by choosing the right type of rental you could up the level of relaxation, fun and rest associated with your usual trips. Here are a few tips on how to choose your Californian property for rent wisely to benefit from a wonderful home away from home experience.

  1. Book Early. Book your rental of choice as soon as possible. This will help you avoid the stress associated with last-minute decisions and may also enable you to make the most of significant discounts.
  2. Opt for Lesser-Known Vacation Destinations. You may want to target properties that are farther away from the most sought-after tourist attractions for two reasons. First of all, in case you just want to break the monotony and recharge your batteries in a tranquil area, booking a rental in an overcrowded region visited by hordes of tourists would defy the whole purpose of your trip.

Secondly, proximity to popular local attractions usually comes with a larger price tag; if you feel that you need some peace and quiet and want to save a few dollars while vacationing in California, opt for a vacation rental that is located farther away from tourist hotspots. Also, you may want to book an apartment or a house in a city or town representing a lesser-known vacation destination. For instance, if you want to avoid the crowds that usually set camp around Lake Tahoe, you could always choose to visit Fallen Leaf Lake, a beautiful lake bordered by rolling mountains and lush forests. This corner of heaven is the ideal choice for a nice getaway that will give you plenty of opportunities to enjoy romantic walks, fill your lungs with fresh air and profit from all the first-hand amenities that a home away from home could ever offer.

  1. Find Out What’s Available Out There and What Actually Suits You. When people think about vacation rentals, they immediately tend to associate this concept with luxurious beach houses allowing them to spend as much time on the beach as possible, bury their feet in the sand and listen to the sound of the waves as they crash into the rocks. While this idyllic picture may stimulate you to spend an exorbitant amount of money on a Malibu rental, keep your options open at all times and remember that beach houses are only a tiny segment of the ever-growing, incredibly diverse Californian real estate market. From modern condos to extravagant oceanfront properties and rustic treehouses, all these lodging options are available online and can bring you closer to the ideal vacation experience that you have in mind. No matter how exotic your rental of choice may sound, rest assured that you’ll find it in California online, with a few clicks.
  2. Book with a Trustworthy Website with a Generous Inventory. Now that you know just how diverse the real estate market actually is, choose to analyze the offers brought to you by one big apartment finding service. By collaborating with a respectable player in this sector you could unlock a generous selection of premium accommodation options that you might not be able to find anywhere else.
  3. Keep an Eye out for Last-Minute Deals. People can be divided into two distinctive categories, based on the way in which they organize their vacation: some like to profit from the advantages that early booking brings along, while others like to take time to research different options and uncover hot last-minute deals that could help them spend less money than they’ve initially planned. If the latter alternative describes your own modus operandi, don’t hesitate to land on different websites regularly to identify and compare the latest offers.

Or better yet, instead of wasting time on various sites, choose to keep tabs on the freshest listings uploaded by Apartment Hunterz, California’s number one apartment finder. Discover a large collection of regularly updated listings, pick and save your favorites, revisit your searches at any given point in time, reach property managers and landlords, discuss amenities and rental rates and schedule a face-to-face meeting with the person who may hold the key to the ideal Californian vacation rental.

  1. Meet the Homeowner in Person. While Apartment Hunterz gives you the opportunity to find out everything there is to know about the property that you may be interested in (and its landlord) without actually leaving the office, it is advisable to take the time to meet the manager/landlord in person before reaching an agreement. First of all, a first contact with the landlord in his own environment may help you determine whether or not his house is the perfect match for you and your friends or family. Secondly, owners are always excellent sources of local knowledge and may even agree to become your personal tour guides. Most of them will gladly provide a series of tips and expert recommendations enabling you to make the best decisions during your vacation and save some money in the process.

Moreover, you should understand and accept the fact that each vacation home is unique. Avoid assumptions that could trigger your frustration and disappointment and ask questions related to the aspects that interest you the most. For instance, is the house pet-friendly/wheelchair accessible/baby-proofed? Don’t leave any room for misunderstandings and don’t sign on the dotted line or make a deposit until you are satisfied with the answers provided by your landlord/property manager.

Much-appreciated for its large rental inventory and professional services, Apartment Hunterz can lend you a helping hand and offer you the knowledge, tools and expert support that you may require to find a great slice of real estate. Make the most of all these elements to perform a rapid, effective and fulfilling targeted search and uncover the hottest deals on the Californian real estate market from the comfort of your home or office.

Sep 2015

4 Top Amenities Any Good Vacation Rental Should Have

Surf rental shop on Kona beach on Hawaii Big IslandCalifornia has some of the most amazing tourist attractions that will eventually convince you to take a few days off work, hop on a plane and set foot in the coolest cities encompassed by this densely populated state. When you’re travelling on a tight budget, hotel rooms aren’t always a good idea. Overpriced, cold and depersonalized, average hotels don’t always meet your highest expectations. On the other hand, vacation rentals are a different story. Tailored to your needs and budget, these inexpensive accommodation options can be found in the most sought-after parts of Cali, including the picturesque Napa Valley, San Francisco, San Diego or Hollywood. But what exactly should you expect from your vacation rental? We give you a list of four essential amenities that should be comprised by the vacation property of your choice.

  1. In-Building Laundry Facility. Dirty clothes piling up in your living room can be quite an eye sore. And who doesn’t hate the idea of wearing the same clothes twice or wasting time trying to track down the closest Laundromat while vacationing in Cali? For these reasons, a rental with in-building laundry facility is worth every single cent.
  2. Dishwasher. A dishwasher can help you prevent unpleasant odor and bug problems during your stay; on top of that, it also simplifies your household chores and lets you focus on much more enjoyable activities.
  3. Garbage Disposal. Garbage disposals are great additions enabling homeowners to reduce their waste coming in the form of solid food. Great at creating scary urban legends and equally useful when it comes to limiting your number of weekly trash runs, garbage disposals are inexpensive extras that can make your stay even more relaxing and carefree.
  4. A Nice View. What would a vacation rental be without a killer view? Whether you have your heart set on a Napa Valley property overlooking a beautiful vineyard or don’t want to settle for anything else than a spacious, brightly lit oceanfront property with a large pool and tons of greenery, pay the right price for the vacation rental that matches your specific criteria and make sure a breathtaking view is a part of the package.

Amenities That Aren’t Always Worth Your Hard-Earned Money

Other amenities are worth a lot of money, but do not always manage to offer you the level of satisfaction that you would feel entitled to after spending your hard-earned cash on them. Private outdoor space, in-building spa/gym and in-apartment washers and dryers are only a few such examples that should be mentioned.

Making an Informed Decision

If you can’t picture the ideal vacation rental on your own or wish to spot the newest, trendiest slices of Californian rental estate before your competitors, start by checking out the listings provided by Apartment Hunterz and use this data to your best advantage to make your house hunt a whole lot easier.

Dec 2014

Addressing 4 Preconceived Ideas Related to Californian Vacation Rentals  

Two queen bedsWhen you plan a vacation in Cali, the quality of the housing option that you choose should be one of your key points of interest. After all, holidays should be all about a sublime state of relaxation, superior comfort, fantastic views, great meals and fruity little drinks served by the pool. Speaking of accommodation alternatives, don’t you think that the ambiance ensured by some of the most luxurious hotels is a bit cold and rigid? Tourists who want to discover the warmth of a homey environment usually target budget-friendly, yet incredibly attractive Californian vacation rentals. Unfortunately, the popularity of such housing options is often impacted by a series of myths, including the following ones.

  1. Vacation Rentals Located in Cali Are for the Rich and Famous; I Could Never Afford One. When you count on the services of the largest, most reputable Californian apartment finder, you can automatically eliminate this concern and rest assured that you will find the ideal vacation rental that is actually in your price range. Not all Napa Valley-based rentals cost anywhere from $2,000 to $3,000 per night. Some of them are in the 300$-400$/night range and feature essential vacation-friendly amenities, including pools, large patios and indoor gyms. It gets better. In some areas, the rates associated with 3-bedroom homes start from $69 per night; in addition, these properties could easily accommodate anywhere from two to eight travelers.
  2. Vacation Rentals Only Make Sense for Large Groups or Big Families. When you manage to share your vacation rental with a larger group of friends, you succeed in saving big bucks. But this does not mean that singles have to think that such properties are off-limits. Cute little condos located in the most sought-after metro areas or elegant 2-bedroom townhouses situated in picturesque, quiet neighborhoods are only two options for small groups or people who travel alone.
  3. Vacation Rentals Could Never Top the Services Provided by Californian Hotels. Hotels may be impersonal, but you hate the idea of making your own bed, walking Fifi when you have to get your mani and pedi, and preparing breakfast for your spouse on a lazy Sunday. Vacation rentals are not exactly the most convenient choice, simply because they let you handle all these tasks on your own, right? Wrong! Upscale vacation homes let their guests enjoy the basic advantages of traditional lodging, coupled with additional high-value features and services, like personalized menus created by personal chefs, spa treatments, onsite massages and so on.
  4. Vacation Rentals Are Less Safe and Reliable Accommodation Options. Wrong again! You can eliminate safety risks and prevent scams by simply accessing the website of the Vacation Rental Managers Association (VRMA) to find info related to various companies owning vacation rental properties all across North America. In addition, you can consult online reviews before going in favor of a certain property.

All in all, vacation rentals offer you the best opportunity to explore California’s unique set of natural and man-made wonders on a budget. To identify and compare the most amazing Californian vacation homes in a timely fashion, just count on the services provided by Apartment Hunterz to check out thousands of listings that may meet your selection criteria.

Oct 2014

5 Essential Questions That You Probably Ask Yourself before Investing in a Vacation Rental

Florida Cottage Style RentalYou’ve always wanted to live your own version of the Californian dream. At this point, you are finally able to take a few weeks off work and enjoy the hot sun, the nice, clean sandy beaches and the endless strings of clubs, bars and elegant restaurants. Maybe you’ll spend a few days in Napa Valley only to recharge your batteries and get ready for all the nights of partying and quality entertainment that wait for you in Santa Monica. No matter what your vacation plan sounds like, make sure you know how to choose your vacation rental wisely. Here are five main aspects that you should clarify before getting the keys to that cute little cottage or that lavishing Californian 5-bedroom mansion.

  1. How Much Money Can I Afford to Spend on My Accommodation Option? Set up a budget for your holiday and determine how much money you could actually spend on your rental. Rates may vary a great deal, based on your destination, season, amenities and square footage. For instance, a 1 or 2 bedroom apartment located in Kentwood, Napa, could cost you anywhere from 1,490 to 2,500 dollars per month, while a decent Santa Monica vacation rental may take 147 dollars per night out of your pockets.
  2. Should I Sign a Rental Agreement? The answer to this question is always affirmative. A rental agreement will help you attain peace of mind, by helping you prevent unpleasant surprises and misunderstandings.
  3. What Kind of Amenities Should I List as Must-Haves? In the end, the choice is up to you. It all depends on how you wish to spend your holiday and the ambiance that you want to recreate. Some enjoy the countryside and wouldn’t rent anything else than a quaint, tiny cottage for anything in the world, while others are fond of the 5-star hotel experience. No matter how you choose to spend your money, a fully-furnished apartment where you could have a decent cup of coffee and a frugal dinner or a glass of wine in the evening may be all you really need to create the best memories in any Californian city. However, do note that the Californian real estate market is truly diverse and you can stumble across plenty of unfurnished apartments, small, elegant studios, cottages with picturesque gardens and superb villas that are all about comfort, style and sophistication.
  4. How Could I Make Sure That the Landlord Is a Reliable Person? Make sure you can reach your landlord by phone or email at any given point in time. Don’t trust landlords who are “out of town on business” for an infinite period of time. When it doubt, just go online and start looking for past guest references, reviews and/or comments. If you can’t find anything on a certain property, you may want to turn to other options that have already been vetted by other tourists.
  5. How Could I Find the Perfect Vacation Rental Fast and Easy? Why take any chances when it comes to planning your vacation, when you can eliminate all risks and doubts by simply letting Apartment Hunterz guide your search? We can help you find the most convenient vacation rentals in your favorite Californian ZIP codes. We bring you thousands of exceptional listings at your fingertips, making it easier for you to make an educated decision.
Sep 2014