How Do I Determine the Price?
Price setting is one of the most difficult aspects of this industry.
Shoot too high, and you’ll hear crickets and miss the volume you need to make a good return; shoot too low, and you’ll end up with lower-quality guests and miss out on the higher prices you need to make a good return.
Your best bet is to set your pricing at the mid-to-upper level of your realistic peer group (i.e. at the 70th percentile of 3 bedroom cabins with similar amenities).
Occupancy is dependent on price, but isn’t at war with price. You don’t need to rent your unit for next to nothing to get a high occupancy rate for your market. (You should be looking at a similar size and type of unit within your market to get a target for occupancy rate.)
The most critical piece of information you need to know is when to adjust your rates, which is very dependent on the time of year and type of unit you have. Guests usually book our cabins between 17 to 31 days out from their stay, depending on cabin size, so we adjust our prices and minimum stays specifically to our units.
Minimum stays are also complicated, but they are underestimated in this industry. Our goal is always to secure the travelers who are looking for longer stays first, and then drop our minimum stay for orphan days (sets of days that are lower than your standard minimum stay) and last-minute bookings.
Fortunately, most people who take longer vacations plan further in advance, so we recommend sticking to your guns, whether that be a minimum of two nights or seven nights (in North Georgia, usually a 3 or 4 night minimum), until you’re within the 60-90 day window.
At that point, you need to reassess and start looking at minimum stay reductions and/or price reductions. A good property manager will adjust their rates at least once a week unless they have their rates set up with a dynamic pricing software that adjusts daily (which we recommend).
These are the CliffsNotes of minimum stays and pricing, though it’s far more complicated than we could do justice to here. Please give us a call (706-973-2900) or shoot us an email if you have any other questions about pricing recommendations.