So for your linen sofa with the greasy chocolate stain, there is a lot to think about.
The breakage deposit is an essential element in making the client accountable for his actions during his stay and works well if you are able to prove his liability. If the client is not entirely honest and insists that the stain was there when he arrived, it will be difficult for you to prove the contrary unless you have taken detailed photos of all your furniture vouching for its state before his arrival.
In every case, the golden rule is to assess any damage immediately upon the client’s departure, particularly if your bookings follow on from each other, which very often happens during the tourist season on the Ile de Ré.
Risks are undoubtedly par for the course in the business of seasonal holiday letting and no insurance can cover them 100%. A property on the Ile de Ré rented out for 20 or 25 weeks of the year will most certainly wear out more quickly than one that remains closed up for most of the time, or is exclusively occupied by the owner.
As in all business ventures, turnover does not equal profit. 5% should be set aside to take into account these rental risks in order to replace an object if necessary or to repair some damage.
Let us be practical and remember that prevention is better than cure. For your sofa, covered in expensive linen, in case of accidents, cover it instead with material that is easy to wash or replace. This will be simpler than conducting an expensive law suit with your client or your insurance company.
Be well aware of the risks associated with renting. You must have a good insurance contract but also, above all, you must organize your property so that it is adapted to being used as a holiday let and can be used easily by the client during his stay. Explain to him when he arrives how to look after the property and show him how to use the equipment. Tell him that someone is there to help if there is a problem or if something doesn’t work properly. He has only to phone for assistance. Also someone will be there when he leaves.
It is the job of Bon Séjour en France to advise, to rent out, to take care of your property and to guarantee the satisfaction of your clients.
Didier Pélétengeas – Managing Director, Bon Séjour en France