Digital nomads, rejoice: Work and play no longer have to be separate. While you’re still remote, get some fresh air without using all of your vacation days. Switching up your routine a little can inspire new thinking and deepen your focus — all while you enjoy all the luxuries of vacation on your off-time. 

Ready to get out of the house? Pick one of these places based on how you like to feel at work and change up the scenery.

Bust Stress: Vacation Rentals With A Pool

Make your co-workers jealous by joining the company meeting poolside. Lounge in the sun while you knock projects off your list, then enjoy a crisp plunge in the water. Bonus: all of our homes are vetted in person, which means these pools are as good as they look. 

Private Swimmer’s Paradise in Goodyear, AZ

Soak in the desert sun from this Goodyear home with a resort-style hot tub and pool combo. Work on your tan while you work from the sprawling patio, complete with a fully shaded outdoor area. The interior’s open layout and farmhouse furnishings are so beautiful that you’ll want to stay in and make meals at home — but when you’re ready to get out, grab ice cream at The Frozen Monkey and take a stroll around South Lake Park.

Palatial Luxury Home In Homestead, FL

If you’re feeling fancy, this Florida short-term rental is like stepping into a palace you can call your own. Here, 6,500 square feet of space is yours — meaning you can find a new place to work remotely every day. Sit al fresco in the expansive outdoor cabana or lounge by the palm-tree lined pool worthy of a magazine shoot. On weekends, day trip to the Florida Keys or take it easy with a bottle of local wine from Schnebly Winery.

Modern Poolside Oasis In Austin, TX

The moment you set your bag down, the cerulean waters of this backyard pool will invite you to take a dip. Catch up with your group beneath the pergola, then swim laps in this sophisticated marvel as the sun goes down. Enormous windows let the light in here and make it feel like you’re by the pool, even when you’re hard at work inside. When you need to get out, experience the big city feeling by taking a walk through downtown Austin.

Honorable Mentions: Enjoy views of your own private lake and private pool at this luxurious vacation rental in Norman, OK, visit this meticulously decorated home with its own mini golf putting green and awe-inspiring pool in the Coachella Valley, or swim by day, stream movies in the home theater by night from this Pigeon Forge vacation rental.

Explore All Homes With A Pool

Get Energized: Vacation Rentals With A Gym

Exercise helps mental health and increases productivity — and companies are encouraging their teams to work out more than ever. These vacation rentals are perfect for a getaway that blends work-life balance, with a home gym to break up your day. 

Enchanting Log Cabin In Sonoma County, CA

Redwoods and red wine are waiting for you in Sonoma County. This charming cabin is the place to go glamping in the woods while still keeping a wi-fi signal. Nature is your gym here in a home that’s surrounded by trails and a few minutes from the beach, but if you want a more traditional place to exercise, hit the cabin’s small home gym. After a long work week, hop in the car, soak in ocean views, and savor wines from famous vineyards.

Private Forest Mansion In Acworth, GA

Turn your workday into a fairytale at this welcoming Acworth mansion, complete with a pool and its own movie theater. Take your lunch break in the home gym, catch up on emails from the gazebo, and toast to the day by the outdoor fire pit once five o’clock hits. There are so many ways to clear your head — whether it’s playing billiards, or cooking a meal for your group and enjoying it in the sprawling dining areas.

Honorable Mentions: This budget-friendly vacation home in Glendale, AZ offers all the perks of a private resort, including a pool and a putting green. Or, go big and work remotely from this enormous vacation home sitting over the lake in Kaiser, MO. You can also sit out by your own private creek and access some of Colorado’s most pristine trails from this home amid the treetops in Evergreen, CO. 

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Find Quiet: Vacation Rentals With An Office

Evolve only rents homes with private entrances, which means that every place on our site is perfect for finding focus. But if you’re looking for a getaway where you can separate your 9-5 from your night of relaxation, these picks come with a home office and the bliss of complete quiet.

Enormous Retreat In Erie, CO

This vacation rental is made for remote work retreats with multiple offices, plenty of separate seating areas, and a boardroom-style table. Travel with friends and tackle the workday separately from your own private spaces, then reconnect over a game night in the living room. Wind down while strolling downtown Boulder (just a short drive away) with the Flatiron mountains as your backdrop.

Upscale Cabin In Show Low, AZ

Enjoy a life of luxury from this scenic cabin equipped with its own lofted office for working remotely. Catch up about the day around the outdoor fire pit or sip wine on the sprawling wood patio immersed in the forest. If you feel like getting outside, explore the easy Show Low Bluff Trail on foot or spend a leisurely day fishing at Fool Hollow Lake.

Honorable Mention: Work remotely from this vacation rental in Fairplay, CO, and enjoy a cozy, log cabin exterior with a clean, modern interior. 

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Cozy Up: Vacation Rentals With A Fireplace

Good books are meant to be enjoyed next to a crackling fireplace. After a long day at the (virtual) office, sink into the couch at one of these places and find your cozy. All you need to bring is hot cider and groceries — each of our homes comes fully equipped with all the amenities you need to stay in for the night.

Dreamy Dome House In Idyllwild, CA

Hit the road and head to Idyllwild, which sits in California’s San Jacinto mountains. Pets are welcome at this airy dome house that’s a theater to thousands of night stars. Once you’ve closed up your laptop for the day, hit the trails at Mount San Jacinto State Park, then bring home a mountain pie to share from Idyllwild Pizza.

Spacious Modern Hideaway In Incline Village, NV

Rise to the sound of trees rustling out this bright property filled with natural light. Kick your feet up in the loft to get some focus, then spend happy hour in the hot tub before cooking up a feast in the gorgeous, modern kitchen. When you’re ready for fresh air, take an evening bike ride along Lake Tahoe, or just sit out and enjoy the lake.

Cabin In Breckenridge, CO

Breckenridge is an outdoor paradise — and this enormous cabin that sleeps 14 is just the place to enjoy it. Take your calls from the quiet porch, indulge in a midday break to shoot some hoops in the in-home basketball court, and wind down by the fire after an evening of exploring the area’s sites. Window shop along Main Street and grab takeout, or find a hike like Hoosier Pass you can do as the sun goes down over the mountain. 

Honorable Mentions: Sip a nightcap on a porch overlooking the creek at this vacation home in Frisco, CO, or soak your bones in the hot tub surrounded by trees in this Alto, New Mexico cabin.

EXPLORE ALL HOMES WITH A FIREPLACE

Explore All Homes With A Fireplace

Fuel Creativity: Vacation Rentals With A View

Get some new perspective on what you’re working on from one of these places with a view. Find yourself thinking in new ways as you walk along the beach or sit out on the lake, free to let your mind wander. Just be sure to bring a notepad with you as you roam these houses for the moment a great idea strikes.

Hilltop Haven In Bay City, OR

If you’ve ever had the dream of looking out to the shoreline from a hot tub, this is just the place for you. This hilltop home in the Pacific Northwest is a destination for remote work, with several cozy seating areas, an unbelievable porch view looking over the coast, and a hot tub where you can dip and drink it all in. After work, take a scenic, slow drive along the Tillamook Bay and end the evening with scoops at the iconic Tillamook Creamery

Lakeview Retreat In Albion, MI

A lake with a private dock is yours at this calming escape in Albion, MI. This home is filled with windows so you never miss the view, even when you’re inside. There are so many places to work at this home on the golf course — whenever you need some fresh thinking, just pick a new room. The spacious kitchen opens right up into the living room, so you can share stories as you prepare the dinner to share. Days off can be spent on the course, dipping in the lake, or curling up next to a roaring fire while keeping the view.

Beachfront Home In Topsail Beach, NC

Creativity is often sparked by a long walk, and here, you can take that walk out on the beach. Sit out on one of the two decks facing the waves, then step out onto the sand when you need a break. Sunsets here look like a postcard, and you can enjoy them from a bright, cheerful house that is decorated to feel like vacation in every room. Spend the weekend grilling up porch on the outdoor barbecue and catching up your beach read in the pristine sand.

Honorable Mentions: Get out into the mountains at this Jefferson, CO cabin with a verdant view of the mountains and its own game room and treehouse. Or, book this cheerful beachfront home in New Smyrna Beach, FL with ocean access and take your morning coffee in the sand

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STAY EVOLVE

Enjoy the freedom to work remotely from a vacation rental anywhere, with all the comforts of home. Find your perfect place to get some fresh air and rest easy knowing that it’ll be professionally cleaned and ready for your arrival.

The dishwasher is full of dirty dishes. The beds are unmade and all linens need to be washed. The laundry detergent is close to empty. If you don’t use checklists to maintain your vacation rental, your guests are likely to encounter these kinds of problems when they first arrive.

With just a few checks in boxes, your guests are more likely to walk into a place that’s spotless — and your cleaning company knows exactly what they’re responsible for.

These tools make it easy to avoid human error, cleanliness complaints, and unwelcome surprises. Because we’ve applied the expertise we’ve picked up managing thousands of properties and created three free cleaning checklists we know will become a go-to resource for you.

WHY USE A RENTAL CHECKLIST?

As we all know, it’s natural to forget things from time to time. That’s why people in high-stakes careers, like surgeons and pilots, rely on checklists to make sure things go according to plan. As a vacation rental homeowner, checklists can help you create a great guest experience, avoid unpleasant phone calls or complaints, and get the reviews you deserve.

These cleaning checklists can also be used to help support your maintenance team. Clearly set expectations of your cleaning service by using the checklists to specify what areas of the home need the most attention. Then encourage your cleaning service to fully complete each checklist at the appropriate time (i.e. before guests arrive or after they leave). This will save you the hassle of worrying about what condition the vacation rental is in when your guests arrive.

CLEANING CHECKLIST

Guests pay a fee for the professional cleaning services that happen between each stay. This means they’re expecting standards similar to a hotel: a spotless home, free of personal clutter, that looks just like the pictures they saw online.

We analyzed the most common cleaning snafus and created a list that will make sure they don’t happen. You can download your free cleaning checklist here.

PRE-STAY RENTAL CHECKLIST

While it’s important that things are clean at your vacation rental, ensuring you have the right supplies and setup for every guest is just as important. Have your local contact or someone from your maintenance team perform a pre-stay walkthrough of your property — you can even do it yourself if you’re in the area – on the day your guest is arriving.

This checklist will ensure that nothing has happened to the property between the guest’s check-in and the last cleaning.

Download the pre-stay checklist here.

POST-STAY CHECKLIST

Sometimes, guests leave things in less than ideal condition. Make sure that everything is back in order as soon guests leave using the post-stay checklist. If something is broken, determine when it was broken and swiftly receive reimbursement from your insurance.

A post-stay checklist includes many of the same things as the pre-stay list, but it also helps you note issues that have come up during the guest’s stay — before the next one arrives.

Your cleaning service can send you the finished checklist or hold on to it for their records. If you have a guest complaint about cleanliness, you’ll have proof that your cleaning service went through each task.

Download the post-stay checklist here.

CATCH ISSUES BEFORE YOUR GUESTS DO

Just like any small business, vacation rentals occasionally run into problems. But with these lists, you’ll be able to prevent cleaning issues, detect damage, and make sure your property lives up to the standards guests expect of your home.

When you have back-to-back reservations, use all three checklists to ensure your turnover process is seamless and minimize the potential that an issue will be overlooked in the quick turn.

Download our FREE templates below! This download includes all three checklists: pre-stay, post-stay, and cleaning.

A BETTER WAY

Evolve believes that maintaining your vacation rental should be as easy as checking a few boxes.

That’s one reason we’re constantly blogging about the industry and offering free information, tips, and market reports to anyone who’s interested. We genuinely want every vacation rental homeowner to succeed.

In fact, we can charge an industry-low 10% booking fee because our success is tied to the property’s performance. We only succeed when you do. If that sounds like a pretty different approach, you’re right. Let’s chat and see if you qualify today.

So you’re thinking about hiring a property management company for your vacation rental. 

Maybe you’ve got an extra home, you just purchased a new property, or you’re exploring ways to make some extra income. It could be your first time dealing with vacation rentals, or maybe you’ve been burned by property management companies before.

A question you might be wondering is — why shouldn’t I just do this myself?

While there are owners who handle management themselves, it can be incredibly time-consuming to promote your rental, field traveler inquiries, take quality photos, write and revise the listing, answer questions about your property, vet potential guests, juggle on-the-ground services like cleaning and maintenance, and follow up for reviews.

There’s a better way. Hiring the right vacation rental management company for your home can take the stress, endless tasks, extra time, and marketing responsibilities off your plate. 

But before you hire a traditional or local property manager, make sure to ask these seven questions to know you’re getting everything you need.

1. HOW IS VACATION RENTAL PERFORMANCE IN THE AREA?

You’re looking for a manager who has a good feel for the local market. A great property manager will know the ins and outs of your location — high season, low season, competing rates, what types of property are most popular in the area, and how local regulations and trends are affecting vacation rentals. You can prep for your conversation with our market-by-market vacation rental performance reports.

Ask your potential manager questions about the local market and feel out their responses. If the vacation rental manager has reasonable answers to those questions, you’ve probably found a solid manager who spends a good amount of time thinking about how to help their clients succeed. 

If they seem uncertain or their answers seem off, you may want to keep looking. Be particularly wary if you know about regulations in the area that they don’t; every manager should be fully aware of the status of local short-term rental regulations. And don’t base their experience on years in the business. There are quite a few longtime property managers out there who haven’t kept up with changes in the industry and don’t perform well as a result.

2. WHAT ARE YOUR FEES AND CONTRACT TERMS?

Many vacation rental property management fees range from 25-50% of your rental income. And, in some areas, the rates continue to rise. 

Before hiring a local property manager, do the math to determine whether you can afford to pay that high of a fee and still meet your rental income goals.

Contracts are the biggest sticking point for owners who have wound up with a poor property manager. If you figure out in the first two months that the property manager isn’t doing their job well, but you’re locked in for a year-long contract, you’re going to be very unhappy for the remaining ten months of that year. You’ll also want to know the payment terms and timing. Some managers can take months to pay and, if you’re caught in an unfavorable contract, it can be a long time until you get paid.

If a management company requires a contract, ask whether there are any out clauses based on performance or poor service. For example, if the management company fails to clean the property three times in one year, or only gets you two bookings in six months, you should be able to leave their service without a penalty.

Above all, make sure any fees and agreements help you build a vacation rental business that prioritizes guest experience over short-term profit.

3. WHAT SERVICES ARE INCLUDED IN YOUR MANAGEMENT FEES?

You’re hiring a vacation rental management company for the high level of services they provide. You’ll want to know exactly what services are included in their fee.

Specifically ask whether the fee covers marketing, photography, writing the listing, updating the listing, observing market trends, cleaning, maintenance, pre-stay walkthroughs, or in-person visits for any issues that arise during a guest’s stay.

You should also ask about any services that are not included in their fee – for example, some property management companies will charge an additional fee if one of their employees has to visit the property outside of business hours to address a problem the guest is having. Excellent guest support should not cost more. 

Once you know what services the fee does and does not cover, ask yourself if you’re getting enough bang for your buck. If your management company covers everything from marketing to maintenance, the fee may be worthwhile. If it only covers cleaning and all other services are a la carte, you should probably keep shopping for a better deal.

4. HOW DO YOU MARKET MY PROPERTY?

This is an important one. Ask them how and where they’ll market your property. 

Many vacation rental management companies prefer to market their clients’ properties only on their own website. These days, that’s not enough. You want to be on all the major websites with highly professional listings. No matter how popular a local manager’s site is, it’s never going to get the same amount of traffic as major online listing sites like Vrbo, HomeAway or Airbnb – which means you’ll be missing out on a lot of potential guests if you’re limited to one website. Make sure you understand their marketing plan.

Marketing is a big word that includes the photography of your rental, a high-converting property listing, framing your rental for current trends and the market, and how it is promoted.

A vacation rental manager’s 25-50% ought to cover the cost of marketing your property on at least one major listing site in addition to any marketing efforts they make to raise the profile of their own site. Listen for words like “appear high in the search results” or “search engine marketing” – these are good indicators your manager has put effort into raising and maintaining their website’s profile online.

Your manager should also actively solicit reviews from happy guests and follow up with guests who have already stayed at the property to see if they want to book again next year. Ask your vacation rental manager what they do to ensure repeat business and 5-star reviews to entice new guests to come and stay at your property. 

5. WHEN AND HOW ARE GUESTS ABLE TO BOOK MY PROPERTY?

Vacation rental managers aren’t awake around the clock, (which is just fine, because most guests aren’t either) but they should be available when people are likely to be making their travel plans: before work, after work, and on weekends.

If your manager is only available to make bookings from 9-5 on weekdays, the odds are very good you’ll be missing out on bookings from people who work standard office jobs at those hours. Believe it or not, the ideal response time for inquiries is 15 minutes, so the bar is pretty high for providing the kind of service that turns into bookings. 

You should also ask if guests are able to book online and use a credit card. The vast majority of guests prefer to book online, and very few are willing to get on the phone or send a paper check in the mail. If your potential manager doesn’t offer any way for those guests to book online, you’ll again miss out on bookings.

6. HOW OFTEN CAN WE EXPECT UPDATES ON OUR PROPERTY’S CONDITION?

After every stay, you should confirm that your guests left your property in good condition and that any accidental damage was documented and addressed. Be sure to ask your potential vacation rental manager how they handle issues like broken dishes or missing items after a guest’s stay.

You’re looking for a manager who performs a post-stay walkthrough after every guest leaves, takes photos of any damages for your records, and takes steps to bring the property back up to good condition for the next guests.

Your property manager isn’t expected to pay for damages out of pocket – that cost will come from the guest’s deposit or a damage protection program like Property Protection Plus (included as part of Evolve’s lightweight vacation rental management approach). However, your manager should notice the damage, report it, and speak to the guest about retaining their deposit to cover the damage if necessary.

7. CAN I SPEAK TO SOME OF YOUR CURRENT CLIENTS?

Always ask to speak with a few existing clients prior to signing a contract. Previous and current owners can share details about working with the vacation rental managers and exactly what to expect from your arrangement.   

If a manager is reluctant to give you references or isn’t enthusiastic about current clients speaking about their experience, that’s a sign this manager isn’t going to be a good fit for you. You should be able to hear or read success stories from customers who endorse the company. 

On the other hand, if their current clients rave about this vacation rental manager and give you lots of insider tips they’ve learned since working with them on navigating the local market, full speed ahead! This manager may well be just the business partner you’re looking for.

IT’S TIME TO RETHINK VACATION RENTAL MANAGEMENT.

The traditional models of vacation rental management are outdated. Doing it yourself is a LOT of work and, as we’ve covered, working with traditional property management companies means less control with fees that are hard to justify.

But there’s a better way. You don’t have to do it all yourself. And you don’t have to sign a contract with an overpriced property manager. Evolve is different.

BOOK MORE NIGHTS WITH YOUR RENTAL

Evolve’s lightweight management approach gives you total marketing, booking, and customer support, plus the power to choose your own “home team” to clean and monitor your property. 

Basically, we drive more guests to your property for maximum income, while giving you more choices with fewer rules – all for an industry-low 10% booking fee.

We’ve helped 10,000+ homeowners earn more than $500 million in rental income. And we’d love to help you. 

See if you qualify or call one of our Homeowner Consultants today at 877.881.7584 (and if you have more questions, take a quick look at this FAQ about Evolve).  

One thing that every vacation rental owner wants is an idea of how much they can expect to make. So to help you escape the unknown — and crunch the numbers — we created a rental income calculator that will give you an estimate.

FIRST, CALCULATE YOUR MONTHLY INCOME

This is approximately what you’ll make before you pull out extra expenses. Income can vary based on seasonality and other factors, so be sure to use averages for your calculation.

NIGHTLY RATE: Here’s where you enter what you expect to charge on average, per night. Get an overview of the local market by checking out our Vacation Rental Performance Reports, or browse listing sites to see how much other owners in your area charge.

NIGHTS BOOKED: Use the average number of nights you think you’ll book per month.

MONTHLY REVENUE: This number is your extra income before things like taxes, utilities, and property management fees.

NEXT, SUBTRACT YOUR EXPENSES

Just like any other income, the lower you can keep your expenses, the more money you’ll have in your pocket.

INSURANCE AND PROPERTY TAXES: Enter what you’ll spend on insurance, property taxes, and short-term insurance (optional, but highly recommended for peace of mind).

MORTGAGE PAYMENT: This is how much you pay for your vacation rental every month. 

UTILITIES: Estimate how much you might pay for electricity, wifi, cable, AC, and heating every month. Be generous with the number.

OTHER EXPENSES: Toiletries and linens. Furniture and decorations. HOA and maintenance costs. There are a lot of little expenses — and hidden costs — you’ll want to factor in to build your budget.

LASTLY, FACTOR IN YOUR MANAGEMENT AND MARKETING COSTS

Property managers take up to half of everything you earn (30-50% on every booking). Slide the property management fee bar to the right to estimate these fees if you plan to use a manager.

Even if you choose to manage your own property, it still costs a separate fee to list on every single online marketplace. Find your marketing cost by adding together the percentages of marketplaces you think you’ll use.

  1. Airbnb – 3%
  2. HomeAway/Vrbo pay per booking – 5%
  3. HomeAway/Vrbo subscription – NA
  4. TripAdvisor/FlipKey – 3%
  5. Booking.com – 15%

If you’re like most homeowners, this section will take the most money out of your vacation rental income potential. It will probably also seem a little overwhelming — but it doesn’t have to. Because Evolve handles the hardest parts of property management for you, including listing your home on all of the sites for free.

So go ahead: try crunching the numbers again with 10% in the property management slider, and zero marketing costs. That’s the Evolve difference. 

You may not be able to change your mortgage payments or HOA fees, but you can make sure you’re earning as much rental income as possible with your vacation home when you choose Evolve.

See if your home qualifies today.


“Aren’t you just like Airbnb and Vrbo?”

We get that question a lot from people who haven’t worked with us yet. It’s easy to see why. We’re all in the same industry, short-term property rentals. You can find and book great properties on our website or on theirs. And the fact that every Evolve property appears on Airbnb, Vrbo, and other online marketplaces just adds a little more to the confusion.

So let’s clear things up and outline exactly how Evolve is NOT Airbnb, Vrbo, HomeAway, TripAdvisor, or any other online marketplace.

They’re marketplaces. We’re a management company.

Airbnb, Vrbo, and similar websites are online “marketplaces” where guests find properties and homeowners find guests. Essentially, they act as a distribution channel for owners or property managers, attracting potential guests to their website but leaving the management of the properties and listings to the owners (or whoever is representing the property) themselves.

Evolve is a vacation rental management company. That means we actively manage our properties on behalf of our owners, ensuring maximum bookings and eliminating the stress of the traditional vacation rental process.

Here’s where it gets interesting. Evolve is a BIG customer of the online marketplaces. We have more than 11,000 properties listed on their sites, and we constantly take advantage of the latest strategies to ensure our owners’ properties are always positioned for maximum traffic and conversion.

Behind the scenes, we have teams of specialists working on the hardest parts of managing a vacation rental: marketing, booking, and customer service. Our teams do everything from creating search-topping property listings to dynamically setting rates to answering guest questions and asking for online reviews. We even hire professional photographers at no cost to owners to show each property in the best possible light.

As a result of our approach, Evolve properties outperform most others on the online marketplaces. So we don’t compete with Airbnb, Vrbo and the rest. We work with them–and everybody wins.

Our homes are different, too. Always perfect for vacation.

Unlike most marketplaces, we don’t offer home sharing, extended stays, campsites, trailers, or other mobile structures. Each Evolve property has its own entrance and kitchen (typically a house or condominium). A lot of Evolve guests appreciate having the comforts of home when they travel, and our properties reflect that.

We take even more guesswork out of vacation rental by making sure our properties meet our four core standards. We believe guests simply won’t have the experience they’re looking for unless the property they’ve booked is:

By focusing on properties ideally suited for vacationing and making sure each one lives up to our standards, we’re building a brand that guests can trust to have the time of their lives.

A different experience for owners and guests.

Since Airbnb, Vrbo, and the like don’t handle property management, homeowners have traditionally been forced to either hire a local company to do it or fend for themselves. Evolve is different.

We give homeowners performance-focused marketing and booking support, plus the flexibility to choose their own partner(s) to clean the property and greet guests. Evolve handles all guest inquiries, bookings, and pre-stay communications. We can also connect owners with hundreds of vetted partners nationwide that can handle cleaning and guests.  

With Evolve’s help, every guest enjoys a booking experience that feels as professional as the world’s top hospitality brands. We handle all inquiries directly, resolve guest and owners questions, and communicate directly with cleaners to ensure the property is ready for every guest. Our unique approach makes vacation rental actually feel like vacation for owners and guests.

So we’re not Airbnb or Vrbo. But we’re all friends.

Once you work with Evolve, you quickly discover the difference between our service and all of the others. It starts with the way we charge owners nothing to join (plus an industry-low 10% management fee) and list properties on all the major online marketplaces––not just Evolve’s site. It continues with the way we market your listing and promptly handle every query, seven days a week. And it becomes clear in all the ways we make vacation rental easy for everyone.

Owners should be able to relax, trusting that their property is living up to its potential. And guests should be able to relax with an experience that feels like a big hospitality brand. That’s the Evolve difference.

Learn more about Evolve and how we can help you find success with Airbnb, Vrbo, and other online marketplaces.

Your Free Welcome Book Template is Here!

Sure, your property listing covers a lot of info about your home — but guests will still have some questions when they arrive. Like, which local coffee shop has the best ambiance? What’s that one trick to getting the dishwasher started? How should they handle check-out?

Your welcome book is the perfect place to answer common questions, and it’s also one of the most searched for vacation rental amenities. By providing essential info up front, you can free guests from encountering snags during their stay.

We think that putting together this important resource should feel easy — which is why we made you a free welcome book template. All you have to do is download it and plug in your home’s info!

WHY MAKE A WELCOME BOOK?

Welcome books have a big impact on your guests’ experience. Here are some reasons to block off a few minutes and fill in this template.

Welcome books help others navigate your rental property and treat it the right way.

Guests want to know how to watch a movie at night or adjust the temperature in your house. Giving them a resource on how to get comfortable living in your rental is sure to make their vacation stress-free for both of you.

Welcome books provide local highlights and a sense of your personality.

The reason many guests book vacation rental properties is to immerse themselves in the location. Recommending restaurants, coffee shops, stores, and more can turn a good trip into the best trip ever. Lead your guests to the most delicious slice in town — or teach them how to avoid crowds at a local attraction — and they’ll want to book with you again in the future.

Welcome books show guests that you care.

Your advice on how to make the most of your property gives guests the friendly engagement they’re looking for. It also protects their personal space and privacy by providing valuable information without requiring personal interaction.

Welcome books help you get great reviews.

Your guests are likely to reward your thoughtfulness in their reviews. Even better, you or your guest contact may get fewer questions during their stay, and you’ll be sending new customers to your favorite local shops and restaurants, ensuring they thrive!

Sounds pretty great, right? But where should you start?

WHAT TO INCLUDE IN YOUR WELCOME BOOK

From a friendly “hello” letter to your home’s policies, these are the sections you’ll need to put together the most useful welcome book.

A PERSONAL WELCOME NOTE

Guests who choose vacation rental are looking for a unique home with a real person behind it. Writing a note to personally welcome them to your property is another way to separate yourself from a hotel — and reinforce their decision to stay with you.

HELPFUL LOCAL CONTACTS

Make sure your welcome book provides at least one name, telephone number, and email for a local contact near your property. This person can be you, a local property manager, or even a neighbor — but they should be easily reachable, and available to come to the home on short notice. Nobody wants unanswered guest complaints to derail a pleasant stay.

You’ll also want to include contact details and addresses for the following emergency resources, just in case:

Remember, guests don’t have all of the resources they’d typically have at home. They’ll feel more at ease if they know you have their safety in mind.

YOUR PROPERTY’S POLICIES

Even if you send your policies in a pre-stay email, (Evolve does!) it’s still important to reiterate them at the property. Including policies in your welcome book can help you resolve common vacation rental issues and complaints because guests will have a difficult time arguing that they weren’t aware of the rules.

You should include all of the following information in your welcome book:

An in-home reference guide will help remind guests how best to enjoy your home and leave it in good shape for the next guests.  Another perk of including your policies: you’re way less likely to find broken or misused items after a stay!

HOW-TO INSTRUCTIONS

When your guests can’t figure out simple things like how to turn on the hot tub, they can get frustrated and wind up taking out that frustration in their review of your property. Even if every appliance works perfectly, spending valuable relaxation time figuring out how to use it is no one’s idea of a fun vacation.

Include helpful instructions for your:

This is also a good place to note any quirks of your property. For example, if the Wifi works very well all over the house, but not in the family room downstairs, make sure your guests know that. If they aren’t expecting an issue, they’ll be annoyed by it, but with a little forewarning, they’ll feel like they know exactly what they can expect, and it’s less likely to trouble them.

WHERE TO GO AND WHAT TO DO

You know all of the insights you’ve collected about your neighborhood? Now’s the time to share your expertise — because everyone loves a good recommendation from a local! Try to suggest activities that would appeal to a range of guest types, such as family-friendly museums or romantic places for a dinner out.

Be sure to give addresses and phone numbers for each of your recommendations. Adding the amount of time it takes to get to the destination is a great idea, too. Include at least a suggestion or two in each of the following categories:

And share places where you personally enjoy going. This isn’t to say you can’t include popular attractions you haven’t visited in person. Just let your guests know that you haven’t tried them yourself, but you’ve heard good things and you hope they’ll tell you how they liked them! You can then use the guest feedback to gauge whether that activity merits a mention in your Welcome Book.

HOW TO GET AROUND

Help guests explore your area by creating a section devoted to local transit. Be sure to include contact info, directions, schedules and any other details that guests might find helpful, like:

READY TO CREATE YOUR BOOK?

Here’s the good news: we’ve already created one for you.To make things easier for you and your guests we created a free downloadable template. Enter your email in the form below to get your free, customizable copy. Then, type your information into our template, print the completed welcome book, and display it in an obvious area of your rental property, such as the kitchen counter. And if you’re looking to start booking more nights on your vacation rental, we can help with that, too.

Vacation rentals can be lucrative investments. They offer rental income in the short term and build equity in the long term. It’s an exciting proposition attracting more investors, especially as travelers embrace vacation rentals as their preferred accommodations.

For the third year in a row, we’re happy to share our list of the ten best places to buy a vacation rental. Our experience working with over 10,000 vacation rental properties across the United States has given us insight into more than 500 markets and how they perform.

This year, we’re including our estimated capitalization rate (cap rate) to help with rankings. Cap rate compares the net rental income generated per year against the purchase price of the property. It’s a good indicator of a property’s earning power and a reliable way to determine where you might get a better return on your investment.

To calculate our cap rates, we started by looking at the median annual rental revenue for Evolve properties in 500+ markets. We also applied yearly expenses of 30% to reflect the costs associated with operating a vacation rental. We then divided that by the median home price on Zillow for properties in each market.

If you’re looking to purchase a vacation rental property, make sure you take a closer look at these areas. Your numbers may differ based on operating costs, property values, and other factors, but this list helps shine a light on promising locations for investors.

1.Maggie Valley, North Carolina

A new addition to our list, Maggie Valley is in the Smoky Mountains area outside of Asheville, North Carolina.

It tops our list with a strong cap rate of 17.5%. Driven by low real estate costs with a median price of $155,500 and a median income of $38,949 per year, the Maggie Valley area presents an appealing investment option.

Proximity to the region’s famed mountain range is the primary tourism draw in this area. And the natural resources provide year-round activities, with hiking in the summer, leaf peeping in the autumn, and skiing in the winter.

If you’re looking at this area for a potential investment, shop around for a property that has a nice outdoor area where guests can enjoy the surrounding mountain views. Our data also shows that homes with hot tubs, fire pits, and decks typically perform better than average.

2. Saint Augustine, Florida

Consistently a top vacation destination for American and international travelers, Florida is an obvious frontrunner for short-term rentals. The warm weather allows for year-round tourism and lower real estate costs leave plenty of room to generate a sizable rental income.

But with so many beach towns, where is the best place to buy in Florida?

St. Augustine rises above the rest in our research with a cap rate of 17%. The median home price is $209,100 and you can earn an estimated median revenue of $50,989 in this area.

That’s an attractive rate of return, and it has the potential to increase further when you have top amenities like a private pool, hot tub, and proximity to the beach.

Rich in history, outdoor recreation, and prime beach access, St. Augustine offers great vacation rental potential for investors.

3. Gatlinburg Area, Tennessee

Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge, and Sevierville have been proving their weight in gold for years. These family-friendly vacation rental destinations have a high demand for accommodations ten months out of the year and they provide a steady source of rental income.

With relatively low housing prices and few restrictions for short-term rentals, it’s no surprise that this area has become a top destination for vacation rental investors. Cabins are the preferred type of housing for regional visitors, and we found that the median home price ranges from $162,000 to $202,300 across Sevierville, Pigeon Forge, and Gatlinburg.

While the area is generally affordable, you might run into prices as high as $800,000 for larger (five bedrooms+) and more luxurious properties. Essential amenities for the Gatlinburg area are hot tubs, mountain views, and game rooms.

While the median for rental revenue is around $42,751, we do see six-figure revenue potential for larger properties in the area. If your rental is in good shape, with a desirable location and popular amenities, you stand a high chance of earning even more.

4. Surfside Beach, Texas

An hour down the coast from Galveston, this Texas town is known for beautiful beaches and a laid-back community. With few tourist traps or boardwalk shops, most Surfside Beach visitors spend their evenings cooking family dinners at home rather than hitting the town. That makes fully equipped vacation rentals all the more successful in this area.

We found the median home price for Surfside Beach was $136,500, which is a bargain compared to the stilted homes in the Galveston area that range from $200,000 to $400,000.

A median revenue of $29,321 gives this lesser-known area on the Gulf Coast an impressive cap rate of 15%.

If this coastal Texas town checks all the boxes for you, look for a property that offers ocean views and proximity to the beach. Fortunately, Seaside Beach is situated on a narrow tract of land, so beachfront real estate is not too hard to come by.

5. The Poconos, Pennsylvania

The Pocono Mountain region has been drawing tourists to its lakes and ski resorts for more than 100 years. With a strong demand for accommodations and a large inventory of real estate at affordable prices, it’s easy to see why this region is one of our top five places to buy a vacation rental.

The median home price in the Poconos ranges from $118,300 on the low end to $144,300 on the high end. With a property that has an open calendar, the median rental income you can expect to generate ranges from $25,058 all the way up to $40,278 per year.

We found that results vary from town to town, but we see the strongest returns with properties in Tunkhannock Township, Tannersville, and Pocono Lake.

Large lakefront properties that can accommodate a group perform best in this market. It’s also a good idea to look for houses that are updated or that you can renovate after purchasing. This traditional market has many outdated properties, and you can beat out the competition and charge a higher nightly rate with a home that has modern kitchens, bathrooms, and furnishings.

6. Pequot Lakes, Minnesota

Situated in the Brainerd Lakes area north of the Twin Cities, vacation rentals in the Pequot Lakes area are hugely popular in summer months. Even better, they get bookings during the slow winter season for holidays and weekend retreats.

This market provides advantages to buyers in the Midwest because it’s a great investment opportunity where you can make strong returns, but it’s also close to home. That makes regular maintenance easier and offers the added benefit of having a second home for your personal use when you don’t have guests in residence.

While the median home price is $204,600 for properties in this area, larger homes that sleep eight or more people tend to see the best success. So it pays to invest in a larger property if you have the budget.

Something to consider with an investment in the Pequot Lakes area or a similar market is that rentals here tend to have a shorter season. With cold winter months, you face some pressure to hit your revenue goals during the high season, which requires smart pricing and aggressive marketing strategies.

7. Shenandoah Valley Area, Virginia

Spanning two hundred miles across the Blue Ridge and Allegheny Mountains, the Shenandoah Valley is an outdoor oasis. Visitors enjoy exploring National Parks and Forests, outdoor sports (skiing, fishing, golfing, canoeing and more) and a segment of the famed Appalachian Trail.

With an area that large, home prices and rental income will obviously vary. Still, the median home price in the markets that made our list is $227,500, earning $37,763 per year in estimated annual revenue.

To increase your income potential, look closely at the four-season resort areas of Massanutten and Wintergreen. They can expand your booking season via snow sports in the winter and water parks during the peak summer booking window.

Profit-driving amenities include hot tubs, a deck with a view (and a grill), and game tables like billiards and foosball. If you’re looking to invest in this area, the closer a property is to Massanutten Resort or Shenandoah National Park, the better.

8. Branson, Missouri

With theme parks, specialty museums, shopping, and hundreds of shows per year, there’s no shortage of things to do in Branson. This Ozark getaway is a family-friendly vacation spot that has caught the eye of investors who want reliable returns and a lower price point.

The median home price hovers around $145,000, making this an affordable place to buy a vacation home. Our data revealed that rentals in Branson generate $24,062 in rental revenue per year at the median for a 11.6% cap rate.

The tourism season spans from March to December, so you have the opportunity to book ten months out of the year and reach an impressive occupancy.

Another benefit of investing in this area is that there are few regulations standing in the way of vacation rentals. Some areas west of Branson may come with restrictions, but the area is generally friendly toward short-term rentals.

The vacation rental inventory is a mix of condos, cabins, and homes. So no matter your budget, you can find something in this market that will perform well. Amenities that can help you succeed include proximity to popular attractions (the Shows District, Table Rock Lake, and Silver Dollar City), decks, and lake or mountain views.

9. Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

For the third year in a row, Myrtle Beach makes our top-ten list. The seaside town is known for its 60-mile stretch of beaches, as well as theme parks, museums, and shopping. It’s also home to festivals, bike rallies, car shows and other events that draw crowds and drive up demand for accommodations.

Yet, Myrtle Beach is a budget-friendly place to invest. Condos frequently sell for under $100,000, and Zillow data shows the median home price is around $144,700.

If you buy in this market, beach proximity is important. However, unlike Surfside Beach, you don’t have to be on the water to be successful. Rental properties within one or two miles of the beach will also book and perform well.

When you’re buying a condo in a resort or community, be careful with association fees and restrictions. Higher fees typically get you nice facilities, upkeep, pools, and other amenities that are attractive to guests, but you may pay a lot for those add-ons.

10. Hot Springs, Arkansas

Hot Springs, Arkansas is named for Hot Springs National Park, a treasured natural feature that draws visitors for its mineral-rich water.

A prime benefit of investing in this market is that your money stretches here. The median home price is $148,800 and generates a healthy $24,425 per year at the median for estimated annual revenue. That leaves plenty of flexibility to pocket the income or pay off your investment quickly.

For the best returns in this market, look for properties close to downtown Hot Springs or on Lake Hamilton. In our experience, waterfront homes tend to achieve higher occupancy rates and command better nightly rates than properties farther from the action.

Lake views, updated interiors, and dock access are additional amenities that can improve your performance in Hot Springs.

So, where should you invest?

As always, the answer depends on your budget, your revenue goals, and your personal preferences.

You might want to purchase in a proven market like Gatlinburg or Poconos even if that means stiffer competition to get bookings. Or, you might want to buy in an area that isn’t as saturated, like Hot Springs or Surfside Beach, where you get more for your money.

We always encourage investors to think about where they’d like to visit. One of the key benefits you get from a vacation rental is that you get a second home for yourself. Where would you want to stay?

This list is a great place to start your consideration process, but it’s by no means definitive. There are many popular destinations that didn’t make our list. Think of this as a snapshot of the markets that you might want to explore if you’re looking to get the biggest return on your investment.

If you want more information, Evolve is constantly updating resources like these to help you better understand the vacation rental market:

If you’ve already chosen a property and need to get your vacation rental off the ground, let us help.

With Evolve, you get everything you need to start a successful vacation rental: professional photos, a custom listing, competitive rates, vacation rental expertise, and full-time teams to support you.

There are no upfront costs and you pay just a low 10% fee per booking. Learn more about our services and contact us to see if your home qualifies.


Have you ever thought about investing in a vacation home to use a short-term rental? We asked Daniela Andreevska at Mashvisor to share some insight on why real estate investors are wise to consider this avenue as they get started with their first real estate investments.

Looking for the best way to make money outside your 9-to-5 job? How about real estate investing?

It can be intimidating to dive headfirst into the world of real estate investment, but buying a vacation rental home is one avenue that’s gaining a lot of popularity. We think it might just be the best way to enter the real estate business and become a property investor.

There are many benefits to buying a vacation rental and we have put together a list of the top reasons that we think you should consider this as your first step in real estate investment.

1. Own a Dual-Purpose Property

If you’re a first-time real estate investor, you are probably considering all the options and thinking about what’s best for you.

Buying a vacation rental home has one clear advantage: It can serve dual purposes. You can use it as a second home and spend your own vacations there with your family, and then rent it out to guests the rest of the year.

Buying an investment property for the sole purpose of renting it out long-term does not give you this option.

2. Generate Rental Income

One of the major advantages of real estate investing in general, and investing in rental properties in particular, is the fact that you gain a source of steady income.

How? Through rental income.

The idea is that you will be renting out your second home to guests when you aren’t using it. You’ll be making money without having to necessarily buy an “investment” property. After all, your vacation home is your second home. It just happens to make money on the side.

When you buy a vacation home and use it as a short-term rental, the money you make from bookings actually helps you pay the mortgage and other expenses (property tax, insurance, maintenance, and repairs) for the place where you spend your vacations.

3. Build Value through Appreciation

In addition to making money in the short run, a vacation rental home also makes money – potentially a lot of it – in the long term.

A second home is a real estate property, and real estate generally appreciates in value over time. When you are ready to sell your vacation rental property, you can usually sell it at a higher price and cash in on the profit. The best part is that you don’t have to do anything to enjoy this benefit. Natural real estate appreciation will take care of it.

If you want to make even more money when selling your property, you can make modifications and improvements to push up the market value of your vacation rental (known as forced appreciation).

4. Earn Tax Deductions

Similar to your primary home or an investment property, a second home also provides tax deductions. These apply to mortgage payments, property tax, rental income, insurance premium, utilities, and other rental expenses.

However, the situation with a vacation rental can get somewhat complicated depending on the number of days you live in your property and the number of days you rent it out to guests. So, if you decide to buy a vacation rental, we recommend that you work with a professional accountant and/or a real estate attorney to assure that you are taking maximum advantage of tax deductions without breaking any tax laws.

5. Take on Less Risk

Investing in vacation rental exposes you to lower risk than other types of real estate investment. First, vacation homes are in top tourist destinations, so you can attract lots of guests, reach high occupancy rates, and charge a high nightly rate.

The combined effect is high rental income. And rental income is how investors make money from their rental properties.

One way to reduce your risk even further is to choose a location and a property that works as either a traditional, long-term rental or as a short-term rental. If you find that you have a low occupancy rate, low rental income, and negative cash flow, you have the option to switch strategies and become a traditional landlord.

And in the worst case scenario, if a long-term rental strategy also fails to bring you a positive cash flow, you still have a second home to use with your family. This will save you the cost of renting hotels or other people’s vacation homes until your property has appreciated enough in value to sell it. After all, if your vacation rental is located in a popular destination, appreciation should not take more than a few years to kick in.

6. Learn About Real Estate

No matter how many real estate books you read or how many real estate classes you attend, you will not become an expert real estate investor until you actually buy an income property and start managing it.

Buying a vacation rental home provides you with an easy entry into the world of real estate investment because it’s often less stressful than other real estate investment strategies, such as becoming a full-time landlord, fix-and-flip, wholesaling, etc.

7. They’re Easy to Manage

While some people take on vacation rental management as a full-time job, you don’t have to do this in order to start making money in real estate. It’s feasible to make owning a vacation rental a part-time job that doesn’t take up too much of your time, especially if you use a vacation rental management service.

Management is a major concern for inexperienced investors, and it can potentially turn into a real nightmare for first-time vacation rental owners. Imagine having to clean your property, change the sheets, wash the towels, and refill the toiletries between each guest – sometimes multiple times a week – all the while working your 9-to-5 job.

Most owners don’t have time for that. Instead of handling it themselves, they’re hiring property managers or vacation rental management services to take over those time-consuming duties. Then they are free to oversee the aspects of vacation rental management they want, like talking to guests, making recommendations, and collecting rental income.

You’re interested – now what?

Investing in a vacation rental home is an easy entry point to real estate investment that provides endless opportunities to learn and carries lower risk than other options. But if you are a beginner real estate investor, you might be wondering how to go about the whole process of buying a vacation home as an investment property.

Here’s a list of the main factors you need to consider as you look for vacation rental properties:

Choose a popular location

Experts say that “location, location, and location” are the three most important factors in a successful real estate investment, and they are not mistaken. When buying a vacation rental home, choose places where other travelers – besides you and your family and friends – would enjoy. To check out some of the best places to buy a vacation home to start investing in real estate in 2018 based on data from Mashvisor, click here.

Learn local short-term rentals legislation

Regulations on short-term rentals have been tightening in many places around the U.S., so once you’ve chosen a location for buying your second home, make sure you will be allowed to use the property as a short-term rental and make sure you won’t be taxed too heavily for it.

Conduct comparative market analysis

Before buying your income property, conduct some real estate market analysis to make sure you’re not overpaying for your second home. Real estate comps are the only way to assure you can get positive cash flow from renting out your vacation home on a short-term basis.

Perform investment property analysis

Compare the rental property you’re considering buying with other vacation rentals around the area to see how you can stay competitive while making money in real estate. Predictive analytics can also help.

Mashvisor’s rental income calculator allows you to conduct all the necessary analyses you need in order to make the best real estate investment decisions quickly and easily.

More people are buying vacation rentals as their first real estate investments because it’s a sound financial decision. The demand for vacation rentals is at an all-time high and continues to grow. There’s low risk, because at the end of the day, you have a second home where you can vacation for free. And with new cost-effective vacation rental management systems, you have access to the help you maximize the return on your investment.

Daniela Andreevska is the Content Marketing Director at Mashvisor. Mashvisor helps real estate investors quickly find traditional and Airbnb investment properties.

Cape Cod, Massachusetts — famous for its beautiful beaches, maritime culture, and unique heritage ― ranks among the world’s most desirable summer vacation destinations. The Cape offers something for everyone, from culinary adventures to a variety of art galleries, preserved lands, romantic sites, and family activities. Fill your next East Coast vacation with days spent relaxing by the sea, riding along scenic bike trails, and sharing tasty treats from a local ice cream shop.

Find your dream seaside escape by booking the perfect vacation rental for you. Then, be sure to add the following ideas to your itinerary.

Hit the Beach or Trails on Cape Cod National Seashore

Shoreline in Cape Cod with brown fence and white sand

Founded by President John F. Kennedy and stretching 43,607 acres to the tip of Cape Cod, the National Seashore boasts some of the area’s best beaches. Spend laid-back days by the Atlantic Ocean visiting popular hot spots like Nauset Beach and Race Point Beach, or finding your own hidden gems in between.

Take a break from the sand and venture through Cape Cod’s vast network of hiking trails. Make sure to look around during your hike — the area is filled with breathtaking scenery including lighthouses, salt marshes, estuaries, freshwater ponds, and more.

Due to the seashore’s distinct environment and wide stretches of wildlife preserves, you’re likely to spot animals in their natural habitat. The park also includes several sites for fishing and hunting, so look into a license before an outdoorsy retreat.

Plan Guided Tours or Ferry Rides to the Islands

Cape Cod is home to breathtaking Sand Dunes, and there’s no better way to witness this phenomenon than with Art’s Dune Tours. The family-owned business offers one-hour trips throughout the day and curated experiences like sunset rides, group celebrations, and more.

If you’re interested in whale watching, there are two choices for a memorable voyage: Hyannis Whale Watcher Cruises and the Dolphin Fleet of Providence. From April through October, a variety of whales migrate to the area to feed on schools of fish and small animals. Both boats guarantee whale sightings while ensuring the safety of their passengers and the whales. 

Of course, no trip to Cape Cod is complete without touring the islands. Martha’s Vineyard hosts guided walking and other services to see its coastal landscape, beach colony roots, and gothic structures. Meanwhile, Nantucket provides ample opportunities to stroll its famous cobblestone streets and admire the shingled cottages. Choose the right experience for you and book a day trip across the Sound.

Rent Bikes, Boats, and Water Sports Gear 

Break away from the crowd and create memories with some outdoor recreation. From strolling paved pathways to setting sail on the Bay, you’ll find the right rental shop to suit any adventure.

Cape Cod is known for its cycle-friendly atmosphere and seemingly endless bike paths. Plus, the Lower Cape’s surrounding ecosystems are best experienced by riding the Cape Cod Rail Trail. Head to the Dennis Cycle Center, find the ideal bicycle for you, then hop directly onto the trail and traverse 22 miles of stunning terrain.

Whether you wish to water ski, jet ski, or kayak, the sea is calling. There are two premier options for rentals on the Cape: Dennis Parasail and Jet Ski and Cape Cod Parasail and Jet Ski. Both shops provide professional parasailing trips plus a variety of rental options. 

Explore Cape Cod’s History and Culture

Pilgrim monument in Cape Cod, MA

Cape Cod’s roots date back to the beginning of the American colonies. Built to commemorate the first landing of the pilgrims in Provincetown Harbor (and the tallest completely granite structure in the United States) the Pilgrim Monument and Provincetown Museum is a must-see for history buffs. 

Visit the oldest town on the Cape and tour the Sandwich Glass Museum, where you’ll observe professional glass blowing, a local trade dating back to the 19th century. Between towns like Yarmouth, Orleans, Wellfleet, and many others, there’s no shortage of historic buildings, live music, and annual events.

If you’re an avid foodie, you’ll find the Cape’s cuisine doesn’t disappoint with fresh seafood, cozy coffee shops, ice cream parlors, breweries, and more. However, wineries are the area’s trademark. Taste award winning wines at establishments like Truro Vineyards and First Crush Winery

Discover Options for Family-Friendly Entertainment

Photo of windmill at Heritage Museum and Gardens in Cape Cod, MA

Focused on curating educational outdoor exhibits for all ages, the Heritage Museum and Gardens covers 100 acres filled with plant life, bug life, and architectural features. Learn more about the outdoors at the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History or opt for first-hand encounters in Monomoy National Wildlife Refuge and Nickerson State Park.

You won’t have to worry about keeping the kids busy on a rainy day. New discoveries await at the Cape Cod Children’s Museum or the Whydah Pirate Museum. Your group can also enjoy live performances at the Cape Playhouse, where actors like Bette Davis and Humphrey Bogart made their first appearances.

Cap off your adventures by exploring sea life research at either the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary or Woods Hole Oceanographic institute. The Cape Cod Maritime Museum, a non-profit organization designed to preserve the area’s seafaring background, is another great choice for all nautical enthusiasts.

Get Your Cape Cod Visitors Guide

With so many items to cross off the bucket list during your Cape Cod journey, you’ll want to ensure nothing gets missed. Download the free Cape Cod Travel Guide and start planning today. 

Rest Easy with an Evolve Vacation Rental

The moment you book your vacation, you should start looking forward to your trip — not worrying about the little details. When you choose Evolve for your Cape Cod vacation rental, you can feel confident that the home you book will live up to our standards.

Every Evolve vacation rental you book comes with a team of hospitality experts, and we’re here to help make your stay more comfortable 24/7. To help you feel even more confident, we created The Rest Easy Promise: if a stay doesn’t match our standards, we’ll make it right. Find Cape Cod vacation rentals you can count on.

Galveston, TX is a gulf-front haven for relaxing time at the beach and family-friendly amusements. Whether you’re seeking a sandy shore, a day at a waterpark, or shopping and dining in a quaint, historic downtown setting, this vacation destination has something that will delight the whole family.

Once you’ve found your home base in a Galveston vacation rental, you’ll be set to explore this gem in the Lone Star State. Here are some top attractions you won’t want to miss.

Explore the 32 Miles of Galveston’s Beautiful Beaches

Shoreline and beach in Galveston, TX

Known for stretching miles of sandy shores, Galveston is the perfect place for a beach trip. Grab a beach blanket, some sunscreen, and a good book for a day spent lounging near the Gulf of Mexico. Walk or jog the longest sidewalk in the United States, the Galveston Seawall, which runs parallel to the beach and boasts murals, shops, restaurants, and gorgeous views.

For more outdoor activities, spend the day at Galveston Island State Park. Explore the park while you cast a fishing line, mountain bike, bird watch, or even journey down a paddling trail in a kayak or on a stand-up paddleboard. 

Find Thrills on the Historic Pleasure Pier

Family fun awaits at the Galveston Island Historic Pleasure Pier. Complete with thrilling attractions like the Iron Shark Rollercoaster, Texas Star Flyer, and the Cyclone, the pier is the perfect place to take a break from the beach. You won’t want to miss climbing aboard the Galaxy Ferris Wheel to view Galveston from new heights. Coasters aren’t the only activity to be found on the pier — you can also challenge a friend to play an arcade game, hop in the thrilling 5D Theater Rides, or pick up a souvenir from the Pelican’s Bag gift shop. 

When you’re feeling hungry, head to Fish Tales to dig into some delicious seafood dishes and test your movie trivia knowledge while you’re at it. Top off the day by grabbing an ice cream cone at Sweet Scoops and watching the sunset.

Experience the Pyramids of Moody Gardens

Exterior picture of Moody Gardens in Galveston, TX

Explore the depths of the sea and the canopy of the rainforest at Moody Gardens

Inside the Aquarium Pyramid, find a 1.5-million-gallon tank filled with underwater marvels from stingrays, sharks, and schools of fish. Feeling adventurous? Book a Penguin and Seal experience to go behind the scenes with a biologist to learn more about a penguin’s diet, art skills (yes, art skills!), and even meet a seal.

Once you’ve fully explored ocean life, head to the Rainforest Pyramid. Listen to the sounds of birds that are native to the rainforests of Asia, Africa, and the Americas. Catch sight of beautiful plants and other awe-inspiring creatures from sloths, monkeys, and river otters. 

Outside, make a splash at Moody Garden’s waterpark, Palm Beach. Whether you want to float around the lazy river, lounge in a cabana, or ride down a waterslide, Palm Beach is a perfect hangout spot for the whole family. Other thrills can be found on the Zipline and Ropes Course or by spending the afternoon with a ride on the replica 1880s Colonel Paddlewheel Boat.

Step into the 4D Special FX Theater to experience a nature documentary or even a blockbuster film on the big screen with special added effects — or head into the Discovery Museum to stroll through the exhibits. Need even more fun? Book a tee time on the Moody Gardens Golf Course for a day hitting the links and enjoying the Lone Star State sunshine. 

Make a Splash at Schlitterbahn Waterpark

Beat the heat with a trip to Schlitterbahn Waterpark. With waterslides that are perfect for thrill-seekers, a lazy river ideal for a relaxing float, a swim-up bar where you can cool down with a tropical drink, and a wave pool that invites the whole family to jump in, this Galveston attraction is the perfect way to spend a hot summer day in the Lone Star State.

Gather your courage to ride down the Cliffhanger waterslide, learn to surf on the Boogie Bahn, or grab an inner tube to travel through the twists, turns, and tunnels of the Dragon Blaster. Whether you’re looking for a relaxing time lounging poolside or a thrilling adventure on the water rides, this amusement park is sure to make for a remarkable summer day.

Explore Historic Downtown Galveston

Historic building in downtown Galveston, TX

End the day exploring Galveston’s Historic Downtown district. Take a stroll down the “Wall Street of the South,” also known as The Strand, where you can find gift shops, boutiques, antique stores, and local eateries. For waterfront views, head to Pier 21 for gulf-front dining options, rooftop bars, or even board a Dolphin Tour.

For beautiful Victorian-Era architecture, visit Postoffice Street. Along with being home to stunning, 19th-century architecture, Postoffice Street is also a hub for Galveston’s art scene where you’ll find art galleries, local pubs, and even catch a show at the Grand 1894 Opera House

Request a Galveston Visitors Guide

Galveston is home to beautiful beaches, family-friendly attractions, and a charming historic downtown area. You’re sure to have a trip filled with fun and excitement that will satisfy the whole family. For more information on the amusements and natural beauty of Galveston, request a visitors guide here: Request Information

Ruidoso is an all-season adventure town perfect for family vacations or late-night entertainment. Between Labor Day and Memorial Day, this southern area in the Rocky Mountains is an outdoor oasis. Travelers can soak up the southwestern sun with horseback riding and national park tours or, come winter, hit the town’s ski resorts. Indoor fun awaits too, with world-class casinos and Broadway shows, plus multiple museums preserving the area’s vibrant history. The wild and western village of Ruidoso is a year-round vacation destination for guests of all ages and interests to visit time and time again.

Once you’ve booked a vacation rental in Ruidoso (like one of our Ruidoso cabins), you’re halfway there. Next, it’s time to fill a checklist with must-see sites and must-do activities. Here are some of our local favorites.

Explore the Outdoors in the Lincoln National Forest

Image of Lincoln National Forest

Lincoln County is perfectly situated between the Sacramento and Sierra Blanca Mountains, making it every outdoor lover’s dream. The public lands which make up the national forest are rich in wildlife, mountain views, and hiking trails, so you can embark on an unforgettable adventure in any season. 

Spend a day — or a few — taking on the slopes at the southernmost major ski area in the nation. The peaks of the Ski Apache mountain resort reach over 12,000 feet, promising plenty of fresh powder days for experienced skiers and snowboarders. If you’re just learning, then you’re in luck, because the ski resort offers group and private lessons for future shredders of all ages.

Anglers won’t want to miss a pit-stop at Grindstone Lake, Alto Lake, or any of Ruidoso’s famed rainbow trout fishing spots. Kick back and cast your line while admiring an awe-inspiring mountain backdrop, or hop on a paddleboat and cruise across the water.

Step Back in Time to Relive Billy the Kid’s Legacy

Time stands still and the Wild West lives on at the Lincoln Historic Site. This well-preserved museum is made up of 16 adobe-style structures that, together, tell the vivid story of New Mexico’s most noted legend: Billy the Kid. A majority of these sites, as well as the nearby Fort Stanton, date back to the 1800s when cowboys roamed the land. The 19th-century landmarks invite your family to step into the shoes of the outlaws that once made the West so wild.

Follow in the legend of famed sheriffs and gunfighters when you stroll the streets of this historic monument. The Lincoln County War is well-remembered in the area, but no character is more commemorated than Billy the Kid. His legacy lives on throughout Ruidoso, with hot spots like the Billy the Kid Museum and the scenic Billy the Kid Trail paying tribute to his memory. 

Play Cowboy for the Day at Grindstone Stables

Man on horseback in a meadow with red rocks

Cowboy culture comes alive in the southwest, and Ruidoso puts you in the heart of it. Stop by the corral at Grindstone Stables, one of the oldest stables in the Ruidoso area, for horseback riding excursions. Ranging from one-hour guided tours to carriage rides through the canyon, Grindstone has itineraries to fit every age and skill level.

Exploring on horseback is a popular pastime in Ruidoso, and the town offers several horseback riding options so you can change up the scenery. Find some of Lincoln County’s best horse trails at Inn of the Mountain Gods, a multi-purpose resort with fun for the whole family, or stop by Bonita Stables for an intimate and authentic equestrian experience. 

Take a Day Trip to White Sands National Park

Image of White Sand Dunes National Park in New Mexico

Just one hour outside of Ruidoso’s city limits lies one of New Mexico’s most popular destinations: White Sands National Park. This sprawling natural wonderland features 275 square miles of white gypsum sand dunes that are sure to make your jaw drop. The pristine park offers more than just an out-of-this-world landscape, but also plenty of outdoor activity and educational opportunities in every season.

The desert phenomenon is a hot spot for family fun, with hiking, sand sledding, and scenic drives waiting around every turn. Any kiddos in your crew will love participating in Junior Ranger programs, while nature fanatics will be first in line for walks and talks with Park Rangers.

Experience Nightlife, Casinos, and Broadway-Caliber Shows

You’ll find entertainment at all hours of the day in the village of Ruidoso. If gambling is your game, the Billy the Kid Casino has got you covered with over 300 slots machines and high-stakes horse racing ready to take your bets at the Ruidoso Downs Race Track. A trip to Ruidoso isn’t complete without stopping by the Inn of the Mountain Gods Resort, a gaming, golfing, and dining hub known for being one of New Mexico’s most thrilling casinos, settled on the Mescalero Apache reservation.

Broadway-caliber shows are a must-see at the Spencer Theater of Performing Arts, a state-of-the-art performance hall offering upscale entertainment on a scenic mesa overlook. Check the venue’s schedule to make sure you can catch one of their outstanding cultural performances, whether it be world-class theater and dance or a symphony with incredible acoustics. After the show, stop by Midtown Ruidoso to peruse local restaurants, live music, and buzzing brew pubs and wineries. Be sure to bring a piece of the Wild West home with you by popping into one of the many gift shops in town.

Get Your Ruidoso Visitors Guide

Whether you’re looking for outdoor activities, arts and culture, or family-friendly fun, Ruidoso provides the perfect destination for an action-packed vacation. For more information regarding attractions in the Ruidoso area and upcoming local events, download your free Ruidoso travel guide here: Get your free Ruidoso Visitors Guide

Rest Easy with an Evolve Vacation Rental

The moment you book your vacation, you should start looking forward to your trip — not worrying about the little details. When you choose Evolve for your Ruidoso vacation rental, you can feel confident that the home you book will live up to our standards.

Every Evolve vacation rental you book comes with a team of hospitality experts, and we’re here to help make your stay more comfortable 24/7. To help you feel even more confident, we created The Rest Easy Promise: if a stay doesn’t match our standards, we’ll make it right.

Find Ruidoso vacation rentals you can count on.

Staggering mountain peaks, rushing rivers, and crystal-clear reservoirs — this is only a glimpse of what you’ll experience on a trip to Summit County. The all-season adventure base resides high in the Rocky Mountain peaks, where travelers can enjoy Colorado’s 300 days of sun and rich mountain town culture. With access to world-class ski resorts, famed mountain biking trails, and the scenic Blue River right at your fingertips, your itinerary will be packed full of high-altitude excursions, no matter the time of year.

Booking a Summit County vacation rental is the first step to planning your vacation. We’ve taken care of the second step (doing the research) so you can skip right ahead to step three: having an unforgettable stay. Read on for a list of our favorite Rocky Mountain sights and all the must-see stops we suggest along the way.

Pick Your Perfect Summit County Ski Resort

Ski resort gondola in the mountains

Whether you’re crushing black diamonds or signing up for your first lesson, you’ll find a mountain that matches your style here in Summit County. This ski and snowboard haven is home to a high density of top-rated mountain resorts, all offering a unique experience for riders at any level.

Copper Mountain is Summit County’s largest ski resort, and it’s the perfect place to spend powder days with the whole family. Reach new heights with Breckenridge Ski Resort’s above-the-treetop slopes that are sure to challenge even the strongest skiers. First-time riders will feel right at home at Keystone Mountain Resort, where long green runs and expert instructors will have you cruising in no time. If you’re seeking more of a local experience, Arapahoe Basin is your spot to shred.

With so many world-class resorts to choose from, it can be tough to pick just one. Go the local’s route and purchase an Epic Pass for unlimited access to Breckenridge and Keystone, or sign up for the Ikon Pass and take your pick between Copper and A-Basin.

Soak up the Sun on Lake Dillon

Paddleboarder on snowy Lake Dillon in Summit County

Dillon Reservoir is one of Summit County’s most popular summertime destinations and a scenic place to spend a day on the water. Bask in breathtaking mountain views from every inch of the lake’s 26-mile shoreline, thanks to the towering high peaks that surround this alpine oasis.

Choose your fun by renting a watercraft of your choice from the Frisco Bay Marina or Dillon Marina. From solo kayak trips or paddleboard ventures, to sailboat and pontoon excursions with friends, you can enjoy it all with a stunning Rocky Mountain backdrop. Take your boat day one step further by renting some gear and fishing for trout.

This recreation area also provides plenty of space for family-friendly fun on land. Bike or hike the paved path along the lakeshore, pack a picnic to enjoy at the scenic Sapphire Point overlook, or try your hand at the disc golf course — one of many in the area.

Hike or Bike Rocky Mountain Trails

Man mountain biking in the woods

The area is bordered by two beautiful national forests — White River and Arapahoe & Roosevelt — so there’s never a shortage of trails to explore. You’ll find hikes that range from idyllic strolls through the woods to uphill climbs to mountain peaks, including six 14ers. These famed trails, each reaching over 14,000 feet in elevation, are a Coloradan rite of passage fit for the most experienced adventurers.

If you’re a thrill-seeker, Colorado has got you covered. Summit County is a mountain bike mecca filled with biking trails and adventure parks that are sure to match your speed. The Frisco Bike Park has courses to suit every skill level, while the Keystone Bike Park features award-winning trails that are often boasted as being the best in the state.

For the perfect combination of all-seasons and all-ages fun, check out the Frisco Adventure Park. Here you can hone your skills at the bike and skate park, perfect your toss on the disc golf course, or spend an afternoon tubing and Nordic skiing with the kids.

Tour Summit County’s Charming Mountain Towns

Downtown Summit County area with mountains in background

If outdoor recreation is what brings folks to Summit County, then the charming mountain towns are what make them stay. This Rocky Mountain region is made up of several small towns — Breckenridge, Keystone, Frisco, Silverthorne, and Dillon — and each brings something unique to the scene.

Some must-see sites include Main Street Breckenridge’s quaint shops and restaurants, fine dining at the historic Keystone Ranch, and Silverthorne’s top-rated rafting trips on the Blue River. For local events and seasonal specials (like the incredible Dillon Ice Castles), be sure to check out what’s happening in the Summit Daily.

If you’re looking for the best way to get around, or simply need a lift after taste testing spirits at the Breckenridge Distillery, the Summit Stage is your go-to ride. This free shuttle operates year-round and provides a hassle-free way to get the most out of your stay.

Get Your Summit County Visitors Guide

From mountain-town culture to thrilling outdoor activities, Summit County is a destination for everyone in the family, regardless of interest or skill level. For more information regarding Summit County sites and attractions — and to stay up-to-date on all the upcoming local events — download your free Summit County travel guide here: Get your free Summit County Visitors Guide

Rest Easy with an Evolve Vacation Rental

The moment you book your vacation, you should start looking forward to your trip — not worrying about the little details. When you choose Evolve for your Summit County vacation rental, you can feel confident that the home you book will live up to our standards.

Every Evolve vacation rental you book comes with a team of hospitality experts, and we’re here to help make your stay more comfortable 24/7. To help you feel even more confident, we created The Rest Easy Promise: if a stay doesn’t match our standards, we’ll make it right.

Find Summit County vacation rentals you can count on.

Right now, it’s a little tricky to travel internationally — but you don’t need to miss out on the splendor of European cities, sweeping mountain vistas, and food to write home about. We’ve rounded up the most beautiful places to visit in the U.S. that will make you think you’re abroad, without the ten-hour flight. 

Before a day of sightseeing, please make sure to check that the mentioned attractions are currently open.

Best Place To Visit In The U.S. For Germany —Vail, CO

Vail holds a certain magic in any season — and wandering its streets, you might mistake it for an enchanted German village. Come winter, mountains capped with snow are a background to the warm glow of restaurants, shops, and lounges made for sipping mulled wine. After taking on renowned slopes or spending a day hiking, you can savor fondue in the romantic ambiance of Almresi or nosh on German sausage at Prosit. Before heading back to your vacation rental, take a leisurely stroll along Gore Creek and marvel at the Bavarian-style buildings.

WHERE TO STAY: Your perfect vacation rental in Vail, CO is here. Evolve offers comfortable places for your group, whether you’re traveling solo or on a family adventure.

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Best Place To Visit In The U.S. For Italy — California Wine Country

If your daydreams take you to rolling vineyards where you can drink in the sun, head to California’s wine country. You’ll think you’re in Tuscany as you study the notes of famous glasses, befriend local winemakers, and relish the solitude of complete quiet as the day winds down. Hop in the car with a loaded picnic basket and tour the wineries of Napa, Sonoma, and Santa Rosa and enjoy life at a slower pace, knowing the ocean is just a short drive away. 

WHERE TO STAY: Find a home just north of San Francisco where the best days of your year are waiting. Each place comes with 24/7 support from our team.

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Best Place To Visit In The U.S. For Spain — St. Augustine, FL

St. Augustine was founded by a Spanish general, and today, the oldest city in the U.S. still celebrates its historic roots. Grab an afternoon bite from the Spanish Bakery and Cafe,  then adventure out to a stone masonry fort at Castillo de San Marcos that tells the story of the city. For a taste of Barcelona, grab a table at Sangrias for tapas, then soak sun along the white sands of St. Augustine’s beaches. Afternoon shopping, museums, and snacks perfect for bringing back to your vacation home can be found on St. George Street, the historic heart of the city.

WHERE TO STAY: Explore homes in your price range that we promise will be 100% ready for your arrival. Evolve makes vacation rental a day at the beach (especially when you’re in St. Augustine). 

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Best Place To Visit In The U.S. For Iceland — Pacific Northwest

Iceland is loved for natural wonders like hot springs, waterfalls, and verdant vistas — and so is the Pacific Northwest. Just outside of Portland, the Oneonta Gorge closely resembles Iceland with steep falls that tumble against moss-covered rock. Closer to Seattle, you might catch a rainbow at the base of Snoqualmie Falls, which is a close double for Iceland’s Gulfoss. Feel yourself fall into deep relaxation as you take a dip into the soothing waters of one of these local hot springs.

WHERE TO STAY: Whether you pick a place near Portland or head out to the Greater Seattle area, days spent in these Pacific Northwest vacation homes are nothing short of magnificent.

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Best Place To Visit In The U.S. For Switzerland — Ouray, CO 

Ouray, CO is proud of its likeness to Switzerland. Drive to a lookout point over the town and you’ll be greeted by a sign for “The Switzerland of America” (it’s a great photo opportunity). This Colorado wonder is home to lush mountains, plummeting waterfalls, and a quaint, but lively, downtown area. One view that particularly evokes Switzerland is Box Canyon Falls, just a short drive from the town center. Take a dip in Ouray’s hot springs to really bask in the scenery or drive the unforgettable San Juan Skyway.

WHERE TO STAY: Relax in the Swiss-like views from an Evolve home in Ouray, CO. All of our properties are professionally cleaned to help you rest easy.

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Best Place To Visit In The U.S. For France — New Orleans, LA 

You’ll be immersed in the French influence of this city as soon as you set eyes on the vibrant architecture, which blends French and Caribbean styles. Get that classic European feel by picking up hot beignets and coffee from the French Market, an open-air shopping center. For a luxurious dining experience, reserve a table at the intimate N7 Nola, a French restaurant with Japanese influence founded by two filmmakers, or eat French food in the French Quarter at Meauxbar

WHERE TO STAY: Put on some brass band music and explore these vacation rentals that are equipped with everything you need for cozy evenings.

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Best Place To Visit In The U.S. For England — Cape Cod, MA

If the coastal towns of England are on your bucket list, Cape Cod, Massachusetts is calling your name. Buy a cup of English tea at Beth’s Bakery, go lighthouse spotting along the coast, and kick back with a pint at a local pub like O’Shea’s Old Inne. When you’re ready to zone out, head to Cape Cod National Seashore — or any one of the awe-inspiring beaches in this town — and listen to the waves crash. 

WHERE TO STAY: Experience the charm of the East Coast from an Evolve home in Cape Cod. Book it now and change your plans up to 48 hours before check-in.

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STAY EVOLVE

Escape to some of the best places in the U.S. that feel like going abroad — and rest easy when you stay with Evolve. Your vacation rental near world-class culture and natural wonders will always be professionally cleaned and ready for your arrival. 

It’s never been easier to list and market your property on websites like Airbnb, Vrbo, Booking.com and others, right? A few photos, a decent write up, and you can just sit back and count money. If only. 

The fact is that every one of these rental marketplaces is constantly trying to improve, testing how to sort and rank their listings, testing changes to page layout to increase conversion, launching programs to improve the guest experience, and much more. 

None of them are simply rubber-stamping listings and waiting around for bookings. They’re using every tool at their disposal (and sometimes inventing new ones) to attract travelers and turn them into guests. More importantly, they’re not doing it on a case-by-case basis. They’re rolling changes out to thousands of properties at a time for meaningful testing. 

That’s where Evolve Vacation Rental comes in—and why our partnership with these sites achieves more for our owners than they could ever hope to gain from doing it themselves.

For websites like Airbnb, Vrbo, and Booking.com, it’s a matter of scale 

All of the best vacation rental sites have one thing in common: enough inventory to satisfy searching travelers. While every individual property is important, it’s the total of all properties that creates real demand and, ultimately, drives bookings. People like demand choices. 

So while every owner is important, one owner is also only one data point, if you’re focused on constant learning and innovation. At the individual property level, it’s impossible to identify larger trends or to understand the difference between a limited quirk or bug from a sitewide issue that needs attention. To truly learn, tests need to be run at a larger scale. 

So when websites like Airbnb, Vrbo, Booking.com and others look at Evolve, they see a portfolio of 14,000+ properties with a single point of contact. They see a management company actively trying to improve their listing performance. They see a team ready to work directly with them and innovate alongside them. Most importantly, they see the scale they need to learn how to win more bookings. And that matters a great deal. 

One owner can certainly be heard. But Evolve amplifies the voices of all of our owners. Let’s look at how. 

Optimizing property listings on websites like Airbnb, Vrbo and Booking.com

From the moment a traveler begins to search for a vacation rental, a dizzying amount of logic and coding begins leading them to the right property. Everything from the order of listings on a search results page to the text on the page to the placement of each button is intentional, trying for a perfect match of searcher to destination

You can learn the basics of high-converting property listings and try to stay on top of any announced changes or improvements on websites like Airbnb, Vrbo, and Booking.com. But the fact is, you’ll never have all the information or options available. You’ll always be left wondering if there’s more you could do to improve your listing.

Evolve Vacation Rental has entire teams dedicated to listing creation, photography, rate-setting, reviews and more. Even better, our partnership with websites like Airbnb, Vrbo, and Booking.com means that we participate in beta tests of new features, get insider information on listing best practices, even make suggestions to them for improvements. 

We don’t have to guess. We meet with our partner teams weekly to discuss regional trends in listing performance and how we can stay way ahead of the curve to keep our properties well-positioned for success. 

Pioneering programs on all of the best vacation rental sites

When it’s time to test a new program, websites like Airbnb, Vrbo, and Booking.com don’t call individual owners; they call management companies like Evolve to quickly launch on thousands of properties. It’s a built-in advantage of our size and partnership. We’re one of their largest accounts and we enjoy dedicated support from our partners.

For example, Vrbo recently launched a program to advertise “Cancellations handled with care” on its listings so travelers can identify who offered “the full value of their booking through refund, credit, or rebook options” as an option for COVID-19 cancellations. A program like this gives guests more confidence in booking and helps set apart those “hosts” with progressive policies. 

Evolve mustered the internal resources and information needed and then partnered with Vrbo to identify and launch the cancellation badge on thousands of our qualifying properties in a fraction of the time it would have taken otherwise. 

There are other examples, such as Evolve being invited by Airbnb to discuss changes in party policies at homes. Whatever the case, each of our owners benefited from our partnership without lifting a finger.

Personal and technical connections to all of the best vacation rental sites

It should be clear by now that websites like Airbnb, Vrbo, and Booking.com view Evolve Vacation Rental as a valuable partner, not simply a customer. 

Any rental owner can call the 1-800 number to speak with customer service. By contrast, Evolve’s CEO has an open line of communication with the President of Vrbo. And one of our initial investors and board members also sits on the board of Booking Holdings. We’ve spent years cultivating relationships and building custom technology to make the most of all of our partnerships.

Cultivating relationships with Airbnb, Vrbo, Booking.com and others

We have a full-time team dedicated to our partners and, in return, our partners have dedicated account managers for Evolve Vacation Rental. They speak daily and meet at least weekly to learn the best ways to streamline our relationships and make the biggest impact. In fact, some account managers know our business so well that they feel like Evolve employees are embedded in their company, rather than the other way around. 

“For 9 years Evolve has been helping Vrbo achieve its mission to bring families together. We value Evolve’s commitment to enabling delightful experiences for travelers while also helping homeowners successfully own and responsibly rent their cherished vacation homes.”

– Kevin Locraft, VP, Global Sales Strategy and Operations at Vrbo

Custom integrations for better guest experiences 

On the technical side, Evolve has built custom API integrations with all of our partners to streamline coordination of data and service delivery. Put simply, we automate whatever we can to create an ideal guest experience–a huge win for guests looking for true hospitality and something an individual owner could only ever do manually. 

For example, we created an auto-response delivered automatically through Airbnb messenger that delivers everything a guest needs to know about a property. It also lets them know we’ll follow up as needed. Overall, it puts the guest at ease that they’ll get whatever answers they need as quickly as possible rather than wondering if a host will reply in a timely or helpful manner.

An individual owner would have to be on the phone practically 24/7 to deal with every question, inquiry, issue, or review from guests. Our custom technology gives us an edge and ensures we can deliver the right guest experience on any platform. 

Evolve works with websites like Airbnb–but we’d love to work with you.  

Join Evolve and you’ll never be on your own, stressing over the time-consuming parts of vacation rental management (like how Airbnb works).

Evolve’s fresh approach to vacation rental management gives you total marketing, booking, and customer support across all websites like Airbnb, Vrbo, and Booking.com, so you can focus on providing an incredible guest experience. We’ll connect you with trusted cleaning and support partners, and you can decide who to work with to create the Home Team of your dreams.

It’s our job to drive more guests to your property for maximum income, while giving you more choices with fewer rules – all for an industry-low 10% management fee.

We’ve helped 14,000+ homeowners earn more than $1 billion in rental income. And we’d love to help you.

See if you qualify or call one of our Vacation Rental Advisors today at 877.881.7584.

Known for its 350 days of sunshine, towering 45-foot saguaro cacti, and bustling downtown scene, Tucson calls to both the city lover and outdoor enthusiast in all of us.

From dawn until dusk, there’s something for everyone to do in Old Pueblo, whether that’s exploring the University of Arizona’s campus, immersing yourself in culture at Tohono Chul, or day-tripping to the vineyards of the Sonoita-Elgin wine region.

No matter what brings you to Southern Arizona, a vacation rental provides the perfect home base for experiencing the area’s myriad of attractions and outdoor destinations. Get acquainted with the city before booking your home away from home.

Stand Beneath the Gentle Giants of Saguaro National Park

Lying on the outskirts of the city — east and west — Saguaro National Park features the nation’s largest cacti. These silent beauties grow anywhere from 40- to 60-feet tall, towering over the desert floor. For an unforgettable photo, arrive at golden hour to catch these monumental cacti silhouetted against the multi-colored sunset.

The saguaro cacti aren’t the only ones to call these parts home. There is an array of flora and fauna, like yipping coyotes, hardy succulents and the infamous Gila monster. Enjoy the park’s grand vistas and jaw-dropping beauty as you hike the trails and enjoy scenic drives, both perfect means of experiencing Saguaro’s 91,350 acres of land.

Dive into Tucson’s Cultural Oasis

From the vibrant art scene to the many historic landmarks, Tucson has a multitude of cultural experiences in store for you. Foodies can find authentic Mexican food south of 22nd, home to mouth-watering cuisine. The heart of downtown is also quite the gourmet hub, boasting popular eateries like Maynards Market & Kitchen and El Charro Cafe.

Not a foodie? Delve into the city’s cultural history at the Mission San Xavier del Bac, an iconic Spanish Mission with a still-active parish, while Old Tucson, where 400 western-themed movies and TV shows were recorded, will entertain any and every film buff. The cultural encounters don’t end there.  Tucson is known for colorful public murals, a galore of galleries and a trendsetting music scene. Pop into Club Congress to check out the lineup before heading to town for the evening.

Explore the Sights and Sounds of Tucson

There’s truly no shortage of things to see and do in Tucson. From the botanical gardens of Tohono Chul to the endless exhibits of the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, this southwest city will keep you entertained morning to night. Aerospace fanatics, let your passion fly high at Pima Air & Space Museum, while those more interested in wildlife should head to Reid Park Zoo

Trail Dust Town and Tucson Botanical Gardens provide even more opportunities for family-friendly fun. With so many Tucson attractions to explore via foot, sore legs are a real possibility. What better way to soothe the ache than a long soak in your vacation rental’s pool or hot tub

Visit Mt. Lemmon, Outdoor Adventure Central

Dominating the city’s northern skyline, the Santa Catalina Mountains rise to the challenge of being an outdoor lover’s one-stop-shop for recreation. The highest peak, Mt. Lemmon, soars skyward at a lofty 9,160 feet, providing the perfect conditions for winter snow. Yes, you read that right, snow in the desert — which can be enjoyed at Mt. Lemmon Ski Valley, offering necessities like equipment rentals and ski school.

No matter the season, Mt. Lemmon features pleasant temperatures, making it an idyllic destination for year-round mountain biking and rock climbing. Tackle the technically challenging bike trails that zigzag across the mountainside, or settle for slightly easier terrain on the opposite side of the Catalinas. For more heart-racing fun, test your limits on one or several of the mountain’s 1,500 climbing routes. Just below Mt. Lemmon, the Sabino Canyon Recreation Area, famous for deep canyons and rugged cliffs, provides horseback riding and hiking opportunities in the Sonoran Desert.

Salud in the Sonoita-Elgin Vineyards

Just an hour south of Tucson lies one of Arizona’s hidden gems: the Sonoita-Elgin wine country. Here, you’ll find nearly a dozen vineyards and wineries offering tastings of everything from rich zinfandels to crisp rosé. The region is Arizona’s first American Viticulture Area — also known as a wine-growing district. 

While Sonoita and Elgin are home to the state’s oldest vineyards, the area is still maturing with new wineries regularly opening. No matter if you’re a social drinker or a true vino connoisseur, there is a unique varietal or juicy blend just right for your palette in this desert oasis.

Get Your Tucson Visitors Guide

From the rugged mountains to vibrant downtown, Tucson offers the best of both worlds, indoor and outdoor. For more details on visiting the area and discovering something you love, download the visitors guide here:

Get your free Tucson Visitors Guide

Rest Easy with an Evolve Vacation Rental

The moment you book your vacation, you should start looking forward to your trip — not worrying about the little details. When you choose Evolve for your Tucson vacation rental, you can feel confident that the home you book will live up to our standards.

Every Evolve vacation rental you book comes with a team of hospitality experts, and we’re here to help make your stay more comfortable 24/7. To help you feel even more confident, we created The Rest Easy Promise: if a stay doesn’t match our standards, we’ll make it right.

Find Tucson vacation rentals you can count on.

DENVER, Aug. 28, 2020 – Ernst & Young LLP (EY US) recently named Evolve Vacation Rental CEO and Co-Founder, Brian Egan, as a finalist for their Entrepreneur Of The Year® 2020 Mountain Desert Award. 

Now in its 34th year, the Entrepreneur Of The Year program honors entrepreneurial business leaders whose ambitions deliver innovation, growth and prosperity as they build and sustain successful businesses that transform our world. Egan was selected as a finalist from a competitive pool of nominations by a panel of independent judges.

Egan started Evolve with Co-Founder, Adam Sherry in 2011. The two hospitality vets believed the vacation rental industry was going to be big, yet the experience felt less than ideal for everyone involved – so they set out with a mission to make vacation rental easy for everyone.

Egan shares, “We were struck by the idea that there was no widely recognized hospitality company in vacation rental playing the role that Marriott and Hilton play in the hotel industry – creating exclusive partnerships with property owners, establishing consistent standards and delivering exceptional guest experiences at scale.”

This acknowledgement comes amid the COVID-19 pandemic – a time in which many businesses in the travel sector are struggling to survive. In contrast to many other hospitality companies, Evolve has thrived – with demand for vacation rentals surpassing 2019 levels.

Egan continues, “The fact that we went from 5 straight weeks in which cancellations dramatically exceeded new bookings, to 3 consecutive months of record-shattering booking volume, is a powerful testament to the passion and perseverance of our incredible team. Their innovation and flexibility have been essential as we continue to navigate these turbulent times.”

Entrepreneur Of The Year is one of the preeminent competitive award programs for entrepreneurs and leaders of high-growth companies. Nominees are evaluated based on six criteria, including overcoming adversity; financial performance; societal impact and commitment to building a values-based company; innovation; and talent management. Since its launch, the program has expanded to recognize business leaders in more than 145 cities in over 60 countries around the world.

About Evolve Vacation Rental

Evolve Vacation Rental is a hospitality company with a mission to make renting a vacation home easy for both guests and homeowners. We help guests rest easy knowing our homes are verified, our support is 24/7, and if their stay doesn’t meet our standards, we’ll make it right. We also make vacation rental stress-free for homeowners, partnering with them to book more and keep more of what they earn thanks to our industry-low 10% management fee.

About Entrepreneur Of The Year®

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So you’re interested in Airbnb property management. Congratulations! Searching for Airbnb management means (at the very least) that you’ve got a great vacation rental property and it’s ready for guests. It could also mean a few pretty different things about your current situation: 

  1. You’ve never done it before
  2. You’ve tried doing it yourself and found it less rewarding than you hoped
  3. You’ve hired a local Airbnb management company and you feel like you could be earning or booking more 

At Evolve, we talk to people in each of those situations every day. And while our conversations often start with a simple question—“Can you manage my Airbnb?”—we’ve learned that the answers are almost always more nuanced.

The short answer is yes, Evolve specializes in vacation rental property management and, assuming the home you want to rent meets our standards, we can manage your Airbnb. But that’s only half of the equation. 

The other (possibly more important) half is what you hope to gain from Airbnb management. What are your goals for short-term rental? How do you think about your property? As purely an investment or as a nostalgic part of your family? Do you value the experience guests have as much as you value their payments? 

It’s clear to us that Airbnb property management is a pretty personal decision.

Tip: Think of your Airbnb as a business and decide what kind of business partner (i.e., Airbnb management company) you need to be successful

What do we mean by Airbnb property management, anyway?

Let’s face it, the short-term rental industry is not what it was a year ago, never mind ten years ago. As you can probably imagine, a lot of that is due to the incredible rise of Airbnb.

In short, Airbnb has branded vacation rental as its own. Most people refer to renting an “Airbnb” now, rather than using more generic terms like vacation or short term rentals. It’s impressive, to say the least, and Evolve is proud to partner with Airbnb for all of our vacation rental listings (as well as all of the other major rental sites). The Airbnb online platform is incredibly valuable to both owners and renters but focusing only on their website or app can make it appear that that’s all there is—owners and renters.

In fact, there are actually three distinct choices for Airbnb property management. You can be your own host (DIY), you can hire a local property manager to run it for you (think contracts and high commissions), or you can choose flexible Airbnb management from Evolve (more on that later). 

Again, there is no “wrong” way—many owners on Airbnb are extremely successful Superhosts. On that same note, many owners who hire local property managers love it and do it over and over again. It all comes down to personal preference. The biggest point is simply that the idea of an Airbnb these days is bigger than Airbnb itself, so you should take the time to explore the diverse styles of Airbnb property management.

And for the sake of this discussion, we’ll focus on complete and private homes, like condos or houses; no shared or less permanent spaces. 

Tip: Do the research and be sure to consider all types of Airbnb management; you may be surprised how they compare to each other and to your preferences

Airbnb property management is not one-size-fits-all

Some owners look at their vacation rentals as investment properties, making decisions based more on numbers than on emotions. Others see their vacation rental properties as family businesses, focusing on making guests feel welcome and at home. Still others are somewhere in the middle, enjoying their vacation home as a personal escape but also prioritizing income to help with the cost of ownership. 

There is no right or wrong way to look at owning a vacation rental, just different goals for different situations. For example, you may be more tolerant of an outdated kitchen than your guests would be, which can hurt bookings. That might mean that more income is less important to you than keeping your home “as is.” That’s a good thing to know before talking to Airbnb management companies.

While many Airbnb property management companies will make it easy for you to turn over management of your home to them, you might want to think deeper about what you want and how you approach property management for one of your most important assets. Any unmet expectations or misaligned goals in your relationship with your Airbnb management company could make renting your vacation home feel more stressful than successful. Here are the three ways you can go about Airbnb property management.

Tip: Decide your financial and personal goals for your Airbnb first, then search for a management solution that will best support those goals

1. Do it yourself Airbnb management: Be your own host 

If your vacation property is conveniently located and you have the time, relationships, and experience needed to run a short term rental business, then DIY might be right for you. 

When you boil it down, running an Airbnb is really just two big jobs: attracting guests and supporting their stays. If you feel like you can master all the modern marketing and pricing strategies needed to attract guests, while offering an amazing in-residence experience to every guest, then you can do it yourself. Just keep in mind that you’ll likely spend up to 50 hours of your time just getting your property up and running, never mind marketing, guest support and the rest.

Here are some quick pros and cons of do-it-yourself Airbnb management. Overall, the biggest advantage of DIY is control over every part of your rental business. 

PROCON
• Control over every part of the business• Accountability when things go wrong
• Close relationships with guests• 24/7 inquiries and problem-solving
• Personal pricing/income strategy knowledge/effort• Income tied to knowledge/effort
• No fees for management• No management guidance
• Contract your own (or DIY) cleaning• DIY Cleaning
• Customized online marketing• No marketing guidance

Keep in mind that you can be successful with DIY management and yet still see upside with professional Airbnb management, like this Sedona couple who doubled their income with Evolve. Again, it comes back to your goals. 

Tip: If you want control over every part of your vacation rental business, do it yourself but be prepared to constantly educate yourself on the rapidly changing short-term rental category

2. Sign a contract with a local property manager

If your vacation home is located far away from your primary home, you’ve probably looked into hiring a local property manager. They often bill themselves as local experts who can offer a full suite of services for attracting and supporting guests.

While it seems impossible to manage a distant Airbnb any other way (more on that next), you should at least be mindful of two big challenges in working with local property managers: the fees you pay (can range from 25% – 40% of each booking) and the support you’re promised. Not many local companies can be as good at marketing, rate optimization, and customer service as they are at cleaning, maintenance, and all the other specialized demands of managing a vacation rental.

Here are some quick pros and cons of local property management for your Airbnb. Overall, the biggest advantage is having a local contact for your remote property. 

PROCON
• Turn over remote property to local business• Long-term contracts
• Low owner effort• High fees and markups
• No 24/7 inquiries and problem-solving experience• No control over guest experience
• Professional pricing/income strategy• Income tied to local expertise
• Contracted cleaning• Cleaning service mark ups
• Local marketing contact• Unknown national marketing reach

Local property managers may be local experts but your online listing is competing worldwide for bookings. Be sure to understand the marketing capabilities of any local vacation rental management company so you can avoid the mistakes Jim made before choosing Evolve.  

Tip: Attracting guests to your vacation rental is harder than ever with all the choices guests have online. Be sure to dive deep into the marketing capabilities of any local property management company before committing to a contract.

3. Stress less with flexible Airbnb management from Evolve 

Evolve makes vacation rental easy for you and your guests. Our fresh approach to Airbnb management gives you total marketing, booking, pricing, and customer support, plus the power to choose your own “home team” to clean and monitor your property. 

We’re committed to creating great experiences in the homes we manage, so we take the lead on guest inquiries, bookings, pre-stay communications, and post-stay reviews. Plus, we back every stay with 24/7 support and our Rest Easy Promise.

Basically, we drive more guests to your property for maximum income, while giving you more choices with fewer rules—all for an industry-low 10% management fee. We don’t force you into long-term commitments and we only make money when you do, so our business goals are always aligned. If you’re looking for more flexibility and fewer rules, talk to Evolve

Here’s how Airbnb property management from Evolve Vacation Rental works.

YOUWE
• Trust your property to national experts• Put our data and expertise to work for you
• Choose your own “home” team• Coordinate stays directly with your team
• Tell us all about your home• Handle all inquiries and support stays
• Want to maximize income year-round• Put SmartRates pricing to work for you
• Want your home listed everywhere online• Promote you on every major marketplace

It’s not about Airbnb management companies. It’s about you.

If running an Airbnb boils down to attracting guests and supporting their stays, then you need to ask yourself how important each of those are to you and your personal and financial goals. That answer should help you decide the right style of Airbnb management for you. 

If your priority is income, you should ask yourself who has the experience and expertise needed to attract the most bookings to your online listing(s)? Or who can offer hotel-like hospitality and in-residence support to your guests, assuming you want five-star reviews and repeat customers? 

If the answer is you, great! Good luck and we wish you speedy Superhost status. 

If the answer must be an Airbnb management company, then be sure to ask the right questions of any potential partners. Remember, you’ll need total marketing, booking, pricing, and customer support to even be found online these days. And once guests are staying at your property, they’ll expect 24/7 support and the promise that, if anything is off about their stay, someone will make it right.

We mean it. This isn’t a sales pitch. In fact, we encourage you to check out our five reasons not to join Evolve article if you think we’re just in it for the clicks. 

But if you are thinking about partnering with Evolve and have questions about this or any other aspect of managing your rental property, feel free to see if you qualify for Evolve’s services to learn more. There’s no pressure at all and we genuinely want to help you if we can.