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G7 Summit, holiday lettings and what it means for holiday home owners in Cornwall

One of the more positive outcomes of the past 12 months has been for the UK’s holiday letting market, in particular across the South West. With people across the UK forced to cancel overseas travel plans last year, more than ever sought refuge amongst the dramatic coastline and beautiful beaches of Devon and Cornwall. As we look towards summer 2021, holiday homes are already finding themselves booked up for the season. That trend is only set to continue as the revered G7 Summit comes to Cornwall, casting a spotlight on this naturally beautiful part of the world.

The annual event will see the leaders of some of the world's biggest economies come to Cornwall's Carbis Bay, from 11th to 13th June, to be inspired by its famously sandy beach and clear waters. The event is a platform for leaders to gather and discuss possible solutions to global crises such as economics, energy policy, climate change, HIV/Aids and global security. Member countries take it in turns to host, and this year, at the first gathering in person since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, it is the UK’s turn. Boris Johnson is expected to lead discussions on how “to unite leading democracies to help the world build back better from coronavirus and create a greener, more prosperous future.”

[The] perfect location for such a crucial summit
- Prime Minister, Boris Johnson

Carbis Bay, St Ives

Holiday letting in Cornwall sees greater demand than ever

As a result of the spotlight on Cornwall and the South West, there is going to be an even bigger demand for those wishing to visit the area, and as such a greater requirement to let. It creates an opportunity for those who have not considered letting before to capitalise on the occasion, and perhaps make up for some lost income over the last year. 

Some may have a new property they would like to let for the first time/ Others may have only used their holiday home for private use to date. However, as limited capacity allows homeowners to command a premium fee, you may be tempted to give it a go. 

Making the most of your first-time Airbnb property 

That said, while holidaymakers may be prepared to pay over the usual odds for their coastal getaway this year, that doesn’t mean they are not discerning. Getting the proposition and pricing right still requires market knowledge. That’s in terms of understanding pricing in your area and for your type of property, ensuring it is correctly equipped for modern travellers, and marketing it correctly. 

While the customer-facing price points are an indicator of the potential revenue your property will generate, the devil is very much in the detail. For example, where the conglomerates that dominate many of the best known holiday letting agencies tend to base their recommendations on algorithms and metrics from a remote head office, local expertise is essential for providing the experience and getting the reviews that ensure repeat bookings and prevent refund requests that will damage your bottom line.  

Equally, your choice of marketing agent and hosting provider will have a dramatic impact on the amount of commission taken in fees. For example, the mainstream agents typically command between 16% and 32%, where an online travel agent like Airbnb charges 3% to 4%, but leaves all the operational leg work to you.  

Recognising that gap has led to services including HolidayHost, which are the missing link between online travel agents and a traditional agency. Plugging into the likes of Airbnb and Vrbo, these new hosts handle financial administration, time consuming guests enquiries, safety compliance, and more for a total commission of 13 to 14% including the online travel agent fees. The result is a combined total that’s between 4% and 21% less than the traditional agency solutions. 

The value of local knowledge 

Local knowledge is very much the undervalued hero of the successful holiday letting arena. An intangible quality in many ways, it has three great strings to its bow:

  1. It means that marketing can be done authentically and with meaningful added value in the form of recommendations for guests and really giving a feel for how the property is positioned in the local area.
  2. The host is close by so if any issues arise, there is a real person on-hand to provide reassurance to your guests.
  3. Local market knowledge and an in-person presence allows the provider to take the changing temperature of the market and react quickly to help you maximise bookings at your Airbnb property.

The G7 Summit is bringing well-deserved attention to Cornwall and everything it has to offer. It is a welcome focal point after the challenges of the last year, and a wonderful opportunity for holiday home owners and the local community to boost business and celebrate this not-so-secret British jewel. 

Find out how you can keep a greater share of the profits from your holiday home with HolidayHost.