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Redesigned Guest Review Form, Improved Changeover Rules, and New Airbnb Bulk Recalculate Charges Tool

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We were so focused on attempting to achieve Inbox Zero Day 📨 last Friday that we missed getting the Product Update out! 

Photo by Kaitlyn Baker on Unsplash

We made a dent in our inbox, but we're still working on clearing it out! Before you resume your own Inbox Zero efforts, take a look at our latest product update. It's all about our October 4th release with 18 updates that include the redesigned Guest Review Form, improved Changeover and Gap Rules functionality, a new Airbnb Bulk Recalculate Charges tool and so much more to discover.

New Features

Redesigned Guest Review Form

OwnerRez Guest Forms (e.g., Quote Acceptance, Legal/Renter Agreement, Travel Insurance) have long been overdue for an overhaul to be modern and mobile-responsive. The Guest Review Form was a good one to start with due to its straightforward nature.

It's difficult to remember the old Guest Review Form now that we love the look of the new one so much, so here's the old version to remind us all of how far it really evolved.

Old OwnerRez Guest Review Form

While we didn't add any new functionality, the redesign features an added floating booking information card that will be a mainstay of all future guest forms. We also added a contact information pop-up.

New OwnerRez Guest Review Form

And yes, it is mobile and device-responsive!

New OwnerRez Mobile Guest Review Form

Users should remember that they can customize their header and footer form theming and edit the blue box text of their Guest Review Form by navigating to Settings > Branding & Legal > Form Messages.

Settings > Branding & Legal > Form Messages

From the Create Form Message dropdown menu, select Booking Review - Step (1) Enter Review Page.

Create Form Message Dropdown Menu > Booking Review - Step (1) Enter Review Page

Allowing users to edit the (blue box text of their Guest Review Form) Message Content body and Save.

 Booking Review - Step (1) Enter Review Page, edit the Message Content body and Save.

Preview your Guest Review Form by navigating to any booking and clicking on Reviews > Request from Guest > Preview.

Do we have plans to redesign other Guest Forms? Yes, we're already at work on the Guest Travel Insurance Purchase Form!

Learn more by reading our Reviews Overview support article.

Improved Changeover and Gap Rule Options

Controlling specific Arrival, Departure, or Gap rules for potential holiday or special event bookings is imperative. Securing a cleaner available for a turnaround cleaning (check-out and check-in on the same day) on a holiday can be especially difficult.

OwnerRez has changed the Set Rules dropdown menu, which now includes one Changeover selection pop-up modal for Arrival, Departure, and Gap rules!

Here's the old Set Rules dropdown menu, with individual selections for Arrival and Departure. This was good, but users could easily miss adding either an Arrival or Departure rule as they were separate steps.
Old Rates Set Rule Dropdown Menu Arrival and Departure OptionsBy selecting Changeover from the Set Rules dropdown menu, users can now determine Arrival, Departure, or Gap rules in one process. Notice that we selected Thanksgiving Day 2023.
Rates Calendar Set Rules Dropdown Menu > ChangeoverOn the Changeover pop-up, we've selected Stay is allowed (no arrival or departure). This selection would allow guests to book and stay over Thanksgiving but not allow a guest to arrive or depart. Click Update.
Set Changeover Rule for 1 Date Pop-upAnd Thanksgiving day now shows No arrivals or departures allowed.
No Arrivals or Departures Allowed

Users can now choose to require a Gap by selecting Gap required (no same-day changeover) or any other rule configuration by selecting It's complicated:

Changeover Gap Required or It's Complicated Selections

If users add a Gap rule, Gap required (no same-day changeover), to a night allowing guests to stay but not allow any changeovers, the Rate Calendar will display the Gap rule as follows.

Gap required (no same-day changeover)

And if a booking comes in that departs on that day, the Gap rule remains in effect by not allowing arrivals until the following day.

No Changeover Gap Rules in Effect

If that night is booked as part of an extended stay, the Gap will still appear on the Rate Calendar.

Booking Rate Calendar Gap Rule Disallows Same-Day Changeover Display

As a user, you no longer need to rush to the Rate Calendar to block a booking for a no arrival or departure when you don't want to support a same-day changeover. With this added flexibility, you can easily automate your preferred rules for each property.

New Airbnb Bulk Recalculate Charges Tool

Tracking Airbnb charges ensures accurate accounting, financial transparency, and compliance with tax regulations for your financial management and reporting.

As OwnerRez works toward eliminating the need for the Channel Bridge tool, we continue to expand our listing channel transaction toolboxes.

OwnerRez's new Airbnb Bulk Recalculate Charges tool allows users to recalculate current Airbnb booking charges, surcharges, taxes, and Value Added Tax (VAT) if applicable.

To use this tool, navigate to Settings > API Integrations > your Airbnb Channel > Bulk Recalculate Charges.
Airbnb Bulk Recalculate Charges

Only available to users that have enabled the Airbnb Transaction Sync, this new standalone Airbnb Bulk Recalculate Charges tool, which is limited to a bulk batch size of 100 bookings, can be used for updating ongoing current booking charges and surcharges, not just historical bookings.

Read the Airbnb Transaction Sync support article to learn more.

Enhancements & Tweaks

Damage Protection Hopper Homes Channel Opt-Out Added

While OwnerRez's Damage Protection premium feature protects against any accidental damage a guest might do while at your property, some listing channels (Airbnb, Vrbo, etc.) offer damage protection programs or other coverage programs.

We've allowed our users to "opt-out" of OwnerRez's Damage Protection premium feature for those listing channels offering their own damage protection programs. Now, Hopper Homes has been added to that list!

Users can add Hopper Homes to their Damage Protection channel opt-out configuration by navigating to Settings > Financial > Damage Protection > Channel Opt-Out > and selecting Hopper Homes from the Channels dropdown menu.
Damage Protection > Channel Opt-Out > select Hopper Homes from the Channels dropdown menuLearn more by watching the Damage Protection video and read the Hopper Homes Setup & Connecting support article.

Expedia URL Capture and Auto-Population

Vrbo API-Connected OwnerRez properties are often also listed on Expedia. OwnerRez has now started to auto-populate Expedia URLs, if found, to all Vrbo API-connected properties.

What does that look like for Vrbo API-Connected users? Expedia links will be displayed just below the Vrbo link with their respective icons.

Auto-populated Expedia URLs for Vrbo API-Connected Properties

Learn more by reading the Vrbo Overview support article.

Upgraded International Phone Number Input

Maintaining accurate and current guest phone numbers, especially international phone numbers can pose challenges due to formatting complexities.

OwnerRez has implemented international-friendly phone number input processes for all guest forms and in-app guest records.

When a guest or OR user enters a phone number, they can select a country from the phone dropdown menu to ensure their phone number is stored in the correct country code format.

International Phone Number Form Input

What does this look like for guests?

International Guest Phone Number Form Input

It's important to note that whether the country code is entered or not, upon saving, OwnerRez will store and display the phone number in a clean format in-app.

Bug Fixes

Display Created Time on Oauth App Webhooks Grid. The Oauth app webhook grid did not display the time that an Oauth app webhook was initially created, creating troubleshooting difficulties for users and the OR team. We have fixed this issue by exposing and displaying the time an Oauth app webhook is created on the webhooks grid to Oauth app owners.

Don't Auto-release PayPal Secdeps on Channel Move. PayPal security deposits, which cannot be rescheduled, were auto-released when booking dates or property were moved by a channel. We've corrected this glitch, and PayPal security deposits will no longer auto-release when bookings are moved by a channel.

Fix Issue Where Total Host Fees Weren't Returned in /v2/bookings List API Call. Total host fees were not correctly returned in the API v2.0 bookings list API call. OR has corrected this bug, and total host fees will now be correctly returned in the API v2.0 bookings list API call as well as the single booking GET.

Fix Rare Edge Case Where Vrbo Sync Might Error for Some Stay-collected Fees. This edge case occurred when a stay-collected secdep had too many decimal places. This glitch was fixed, and Vrbo sync processes will continue to push Vrbo property stay-collected fees correctly.

Handle Case Where Airbnb Payouts Contains No Transactions. Airbnb API-connected users that had the Airbnb transaction sync enabled experienced an Airbnb transactions error, but the deposit was correctly synced. We have fixed this bug, and future Airbnb transaction syncs will process accurately.

Improve Default RA Has Wrong Language for Ages. The default OwnerRez Rental Agreement stated, "I am over the age of {PMINAGE} and assume responsibility for those in my charge under the age of {PMINAGE}" and there were other areas of the default Rental Agreement that referenced "children" as well. Still, we needed to change these areas to reference the entire group of guests instead of focusing on children only. OwnerRez has made the following changes to the default Rental Agreement.

  • In the 3rd paragraph (from the top), changed "This Agreement applies to all members of the Guest's party no matter the age or affiliation." to "This Agreement applies to all members of the Guest's party no matter the age or affiliation ("Group")."
  • Lower down, changed the sentence "I am over the age of {PMINAGE} and assume responsibility for those in my charge under the age of {PMINAGE}." to "I am over the age of {PMINAGE} and assume responsibility for all in the Group."
  • Below that, changed the sentence "Acknowledging this, I accept complete responsibility for the minor children and myself in my charge and visit the property and equipment and engage in activities or events at my own risk." to "Acknowledging this, I accept complete responsibility for the Group, and the Group is visiting the property and using the equipment and is engaging in activities or events at the Group's risk."

Improve Validation Around Bounds Checking for Numeric Rules. If a user entered a "days before arrival" cancellation policy, that would result in a date further back than the DateTime.MinValue, while editing booking rules, an error would occur. This glitch has been corrected, and users can correctly enter a "days before arrival" cancellation policy while editing booking rules.

Parallelize Webhook Sending. OwnerRez's webhook sending was too slow, so we've optimized this action by processing and sending different webhooks in parallel to speed up the webhook sending procedure.

Remove Airbnb Amenities From Dictionary as Needed. OwnerRez was removing Airbnb amenities by not including them in the amenities dictionary. Still, that method was suboptimal as there were times that those removed amenities were incorrectly synced to Airbnb. Airbnb has changed its amenities logic, so OR has resolved this issue by including the amenity but passing it as is_present: false.

Show Correct Stripe Charge Transaction Identifier for Secdeps. This edge case happened when a user with multiple active Stripe accounts attempted to process a refund from the security deposit, but the Stripe account credit card information was no longer valid and the system did not allow the user to re-enter the credit card details because the original transaction was no longer active. This error occurred because the payment method used an older Stripe account (still active), but the source payment method ID was from a new Stripe account. We corrected this glitch to expose and display the correct Stripe security deposit charge transaction identifiers that allow users to process security deposit refunds correctly.

Use Channel/Listing Site Override When Quoting in Booking Widget. We recently added handling for passing listing site parameters through to quotes created by the widget (in preparation for Google Vacation Rentals), but we missed passing the listing site parameters properly for quotes displayed inline on the widget before the redirect. We fixed this bug, and are now passing listing site parameters properly.

Webhook Subscription Creation on v2 API. v2 API Subscription Creation Webhooks sent with invalid URL values were accepted, but our webhook sender service would throw errors every time it tried to send something to that subscription. This issue has been resolved by adding additional URL validation checks and will display the following error message, "The WebhookUrl field is not a valid fully-qualified http, https, or ftp URL." if an invalid URL value is sent.

16 Comments (add yours)

Ventura County V
Oct 10, 2023 1:40 PM
Joined Mar, 2022 109 posts

These are some great updates!  I noticed the Expedia link on one of my listings yesterday, it's great to know which ones have been picked up by them.

While the original review form was nice and fit nicely with my personal form design standards (KISS), I do really like the new design.  The booking info card is a nice touch and responsive is always a plus.  Question, are the developers incorporating ADA design principles into the new forms?  It would be a crucial thing for any pre-booking forms especially.

Lisa@chicbeach
Oct 10, 2023 10:43 PM
Joined Sep, 2023 1 post

I am in the process of changing over to OR and I was just commenting today that the only thing I will miss from my old PMS is the ability to disallow departures on holidays. And then this!!!!! I made the right choice! 

Anne S
Oct 11, 2023 9:20 AM
OR Team Member Joined Sep, 2022 93 posts

I am in the process of changing over to OR and I was just commenting today that the only thing I will miss from my old PMS is the ability to disallow departures on holidays. And then this!!!!! I made the right choice! 

Welcome to OwnerRez Lisa!

Anne S
Oct 11, 2023 11:26 AM
OR Team Member Joined Sep, 2022 93 posts

These are some great updates!  I noticed the Expedia link on one of my listings yesterday, it's great to know which ones have been picked up by them.

While the original review form was nice and fit nicely with my personal form design standards (KISS), I do really like the new design.  The booking info card is a nice touch and responsive is always a plus.  Question, are the developers incorporating ADA design principles into the new forms?  It would be a crucial thing for any pre-booking forms especially.

Thank you. We generally follow and will continue to work on good design and layout principles, and our components have accessibility support. Part of our reason for upgrading is modernizing the components to work best with the latest browser versions and accessibility tools.

Tacuben
Oct 11, 2023 2:22 PM
Joined Apr, 2022 1 post

Where do the results of a guest review populate? It would be great if we could connect it to our Google Business listing.

Anne S
Oct 11, 2023 4:11 PM
OR Team Member Joined Sep, 2022 93 posts

Where do the results of a guest review populate? It would be great if we could connect it to our Google Business listing.

by Tacuben – Oct 11, 2023 6:22 PM (UTC)

Guest reviews are stored directly in your OwnerRez account and displayed on your OR hosted website. Feel free to add your vote to the Google My Business - Add to where guests posted their review Feature Request.

TreasureIsland
Oct 11, 2023 5:49 PM
Joined Jul, 2020 11 posts

Is there a way to block Thanksgiving, Christmas, July 4th with the Changeover option as you have shown but as a "set it and forget it" into the future so we never have to remember every again?

Or if PriceLabs feeds into OR should we do it there?

I want to select that Changeover option (into the future forevermore) unless I change it for:

•every Dec. 25th

•the fourth Thursday of every Nov. (Thanksgiving)

•every July 4th

(Kind of like creating a repeating event in iCal.)

Anne S
Oct 12, 2023 11:49 AM
OR Team Member Joined Sep, 2022 93 posts

Is there a way to block Thanksgiving, Christmas, July 4th with the Changeover option as you have shown but as a "set it and forget it" into the future so we never have to remember every again?

Or if PriceLabs feeds into OR should we do it there?

I want to select that Changeover option (into the future forevermore) unless I change it for:

•every Dec. 25th

•the fourth Thursday of every Nov. (Thanksgiving)

•every July 4th

(Kind of like creating a repeating event in iCal.)

Unfortunately, there is no automated way to set your Changeover options to no arrivals or departures for every holiday indefinitely at the moment. You would have to explore your PriceLabs configuration to see what options are available there.

Annie N
Oct 12, 2023 3:17 PM
Joined Aug, 2023 6 posts

Hi

Regarding renters agreement changes, does this mean these clauses should also mention the Group:

 

  • I agree to hold harmless and to indemnify the Owner of the Rental Property against all loss, damage, expense and penalty on account of personal injury or property damage to the rental dwellers, the undersigned or to any minor child or children in the charge of the undersigned, howsoever rising, whether by act or acts or failure to act of the employees, owners or animals of the said company or property owners or not.
  • I enter into agreement freely with the Owner of the Rental Property at my own risk, acknowledging the risks inherent in indoor and outdoor activities and assume any and all responsibility for the minor children and myself in my charge.

Thanks Annie

TreasureIsland
Oct 12, 2023 3:41 PM
Joined Jul, 2020 11 posts

Spoke with PriceLabs, they said they can't do it, and to inquire with O.R.!  If the logic exists to do this in iCal, the programming is doable.

Anne S
Oct 13, 2023 12:09 PM
OR Team Member Joined Sep, 2022 93 posts

Hi

Regarding renters agreement changes, does this mean these clauses should also mention the Group:

 

  • I agree to hold harmless and to indemnify the Owner of the Rental Property against all loss, damage, expense and penalty on account of personal injury or property damage to the rental dwellers, the undersigned or to any minor child or children in the charge of the undersigned, howsoever rising, whether by act or acts or failure to act of the employees, owners or animals of the said company or property owners or not.
  • I enter into agreement freely with the Owner of the Rental Property at my own risk, acknowledging the risks inherent in indoor and outdoor activities and assume any and all responsibility for the minor children and myself in my charge.

Thanks Annie

by Annie N – Oct 12, 2023 7:17 PM (UTC)

Great catch, Annie! To be clear, the changes made were to the OR Default Renter Agreement only. Feel free to edit your own Renter Agreement with your suggested changes.

Chris L
Oct 15, 2023 9:28 PM
Joined May, 2017 199 posts

2 questions:

  1. How does your system auto-populate Expedia links? None of mine seem to have auto-populated, and I know I do periodically get bookings from Expedia. Will it only auto-populate after I actually get an Expedia stay, or does your system either periodically receive Expedia data via the existing Api connection or scrape Expedia and use some matching logic? Or does it only occur for new connections? Not a big deal, just curious if I can ever expect to see them show up on my API connection page.
  2. For the new changeover logic option, there's one more feature that would be amazing to have: Require Changeover (or Prevent Stay-Through). I would love to use something like this where I can set an appointment for something (e.g. maintenance work or a cable TV tech appointment or something) so that I can get a booking ends that morning and another that starts that evening, but my changeover window can be used for those kinds of services. Currently, the solution is to block either the night before or the night after, but my plumbers/HVAC techs/carpet cleaners/etc. are all very used to working inside of a changeover window, and so that's unnecessarily taking a night out of revenue availability. I assume this should be doable with some creative use of maximum stay lengths for the dates leading up to the block combined with allowable check-in/check-out dates, etc. (I think it really can sort of already be done with creative use of Seasons, but it's cumbersome and something ripe for a little automatic automation. :)
Anne S
Oct 16, 2023 11:39 AM
OR Team Member Joined Sep, 2022 93 posts

2 questions:

  1. How does your system auto-populate Expedia links? None of mine seem to have auto-populated, and I know I do periodically get bookings from Expedia. Will it only auto-populate after I actually get an Expedia stay, or does your system either periodically receive Expedia data via the existing Api connection or scrape Expedia and use some matching logic? Or does it only occur for new connections? Not a big deal, just curious if I can ever expect to see them show up on my API connection page.
  2. For the new changeover logic option, there's one more feature that would be amazing to have: Require Changeover (or Prevent Stay-Through). I would love to use something like this where I can set an appointment for something (e.g. maintenance work or a cable TV tech appointment or something) so that I can get a booking ends that morning and another that starts that evening, but my changeover window can be used for those kinds of services. Currently, the solution is to block either the night before or the night after, but my plumbers/HVAC techs/carpet cleaners/etc. are all very used to working inside of a changeover window, and so that's unnecessarily taking a night out of revenue availability. I assume this should be doable with some creative use of maximum stay lengths for the dates leading up to the block combined with allowable check-in/check-out dates, etc. (I think it really can sort of already be done with creative use of Seasons, but it's cumbersome and something ripe for a little automatic automation. :)
by Chris L – Oct 16, 2023 1:28 AM (UTC)

Great questions Chris!

For number 1, OR runs a background service that checks from time to time but there are too many listings to check every day, so it may take a bit for your Expedia links to populate. But feel free to navigate to Settings > API Integrations > your Vrbo API Integration > Actions > Check Status to check immediately and hopefully, they will show up.

Number 2 is an interesting idea! We recommend that you submit a Feature Request with more details.

Jaci C
Oct 16, 2023 5:32 PM
Joined Oct, 2021 7 posts

Great updates!!!! I do have a questions, is there a way to BULK add changeover days to multiple listings?

 

I would like to create a "no check in/out" on Christmas, and Thanksgiving.

 

 

Susie T
Oct 16, 2023 11:32 PM
Joined Oct, 2017 6 posts

I second this...

Great updates!!!! I do have a questions, is there a way to BULK add changeover days to multiple listings?

 

I would like to create a "no check in/out" on Christmas, and Thanksgiving.

 

 

by Jaci C – Oct 16, 2023 9:32 PM (UTC)

 

Anne S
Oct 17, 2023 9:27 AM
OR Team Member Joined Sep, 2022 93 posts

I second this...

Great updates!!!! I do have a questions, is there a way to BULK add changeover days to multiple listings?

 

I would like to create a "no check in/out" on Christmas, and Thanksgiving.

 

 

by Jaci C – Oct 16, 2023 9:32 PM (UTC)

 

by Susie T – Oct 17, 2023 3:32 AM (UTC)

Jaci and Susie, that idea is intriguing. I suggest that you work together to submit a Feature Request with more details.