“While Expedia and HomeAway characterize vacation homeowners and managers as ‘unsophisticated’ I am pretty confident these homeowners and managers know their business better than some ham-handed multi-national corporation,” said Bunnie Riedel
CHINCOTEAGUE, VA, September 18, 2017 /24-7PressRelease/ — In a stunning disclosure, Expedia revealed its newest method for greater control of vacation rental homes and their owners. At its recent software conference, Expedia disclosed its plan to discount rates of rental homes, much like it has done with the hotel industry.
The plan uses pre-determined algorithms to slash homeowners’ stated rates, forcing homeowners to accept Expedia’s determination of what their nightly rate should be, if they want to have a chance of ever being seen. These algorithms will sort somewhat “like” homes based on rates and suggest to vacation rental homeowners the “correct” nightly rate for their properties.
“Their hubris and arrogance is unbelievable,” said Bunnie Riedel, owner of the state-wide listing site, Virginia Vacation Rentals. “They first began with charging our renters an outrageous ‘booking fee’ of 10% to 15% and then forced homeowners like me into online booking and their rental policies, and now are putting the icing on the cake by telling us what we should be charging.”
A September 14th online article in VRMintel described the new move as follows:
“As Expedia looked to replicate its pricing and sort strategies for the vacation rental industry, it became increasingly apparent to the company that HomeAway needed to find a way to adjust pricing for less sophisticated managers and homeowners. As a result, HomeAway’s MarketMaker was born.”
“Unlike hotels, vacation rental homeowners don’t have 300 rooms to sell, they have one or maybe two houses,” said Riedel. “They are messing with our home value and equity. Many owners I speak to have counted on their vacation rental homes for retirement income. They spent a lifetime building up their property through investment and now Expedia has come through this industry like a bull in a china shop, tearing up everything in its path.”
In April 2017, Bunnie Riedel made the decision to not renew her rental home listing on HomeAway. A few months later, she joined a growing network of statewide vacation rental sites and had Virginia Vacation Rentals created.
“Virginia Vacation Rentals has all the functionality of the HomeAway, and even a few add-ons that are better,” said Riedel. “It is purely a listing site that brings renters and homeowners together. And we offer the first 6 months of listing free. We will not charge a booking fee to renters or interfere with how a homeowner rents or what they can charge. While Expedia and HomeAway characterize vacation homeowners and managers as ‘unsophisticated’ I am pretty confident these homeowners and managers know their business better than some ham handed multi-national corporation.”
Virginia Vacation Rentals is a project of Riedel Communications, Inc. Riedel Communications has been offering communications, marketing and governance consulting to government agencies, nonprofits and small business for over twelve years.
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