Operating a vacation rental business takes a lot of time and effort. Periodically we like to interview one of our exceptional users. This week we spoke with Daniele from Salt and Shine Vacation Rentals. Daniele's website and operation can be found at saltandshinerentals.com. Below are the questions we asked and her responses.
Can you tell us a little bit about your history?
Daniele: I was working for a large corporation in the medical financial field specializing in transportation and coding. After the company changed their management team, they axed my position. I found myself without a job and had no desire to stay in the field. I had very little passion for the job. I had no idea how I would reinvent myself at this point in my life. I was in my 40's.
My family and I went on our annual vacation to Key West to escape the harsh Maine winter and to visit with my parents. My retired father had taken on a job with his friend's vacation rental company. He was a guest service coordinator and property manager. I had NO idea these kinds of jobs existed! I was intrigued - I tagged along with him to see what the job entailed. That was it.... I was hooked! I wanted to learn everything I could about the industry.
When I returned to Maine, I took an entry level position at a seasonal vacation rental company in one of our beach towns. I quickly moved into a management position. Unfortunately, when I started with the company they were struggling financially and with their staff. The issues they were having internally were trickling down to their rentals, the entire show was suffering.
I could not represent the company any longer and decided to give my notice at the end of the fall season of 2016. In January of 2017, I was back in Key West when I received a phone call on my cell phone from a former owner of one of the properties I had signed on from the vacation rental company I had left. She also left the vacation rental company due to their lack of commitment and services.
I was shocked to be hearing from her and on my private cell number. She was adamant that I take on her property as a property manager and guest service coordinator. I told her I needed time to consider this, but she didn't give up. She said she saw something in me and I needed to start my own company in Southern Maine. *This woman's job is to find, train and create elite real estate agent teams that list and sell multi-million dollar properties for Keller Williams.
In March of 2017, Salt & Shine Vacation Rentals was born. It has been the best decision I have ever made. Everyday brings new challenges, new lessons, successes, and losses. I Love Every Minute of It!! The Very Best part about my company is I get to work with my brilliant daughter who took us to a new level. After she graduated from The University of NH she came on board full time. She is my General Manager and a force! She is incredible in every aspect of this business.
*PS- I did find out how she got my cell phone number.... her cousin is a profiler for the FBI so she used her connections to get a hold of me!! Sneaky!
Are you from Maine or did you move there later?
Daniele: I have lived in Maine for the majority of my adult life.
What do you love the most about the VR business?
Daniele: I welcome the challenges this career brings. I love the variety of people we meet, I love to help create lasting Maine memories for our guests, I love the concierge aspect. I adore my staff. I am quite simply in love with this industry. I wake up everyday and am thankful!!
What do you dislike the most about it?
Daniele: Partners (property owners), who can't grasp or do not appreciate how much we do for them. Guests that complain after they check out without giving us the opportunity to fix any issues while staying with us. We give them ample opportunity with our 3 touch approach. Which means our policy is to reach out to all of our guests the morning after check in, mid week and the night before check out. These are text messages which 99% of guests respond to.
How do you use OwnerRez to manage your business?
Daniele: I use just about every aspect of the software to manage my business.
What is the most useful feature OwnerRez offers?
Daniele: I'm not sure I can pick just one!! Syncing capability, owner payments, booking online, reports. One thing I do wish it had..... were more accounting features. Also, there doesn't seem to be a feature that would let us know if we had missed an owner payment. We have had to create an Excel sheet to keep track of payments. It would be ideal if there was a report feature added for this function.
And here we are, Daniele & Hannah Rogers. Daniele is the Salty one and Hannah is the Shine!!
Thanks, Daniele! We wish Salt and Shine Vacation Rentals much success as they continue to manage their business and thrive in the vacation rental industry!