Hey everyone, I have been contacted by Evolve. I have been considering them but with a 10% fee plus the credit card fee it comes to about 12.5% which is pretty high unless I get more bookings. They reviewed by listing and said they would not change my pricing and you can cancel at any time and there is no fee BUT I will lose my Airbnb status of Super Host and my very high ranking with VRBO - 25 Five Star reviews. So since I am in a rural area, I am not sure their marketing will really help me very much but I was going to try them starting September which is when I would need to pay my annual fee to HomeAway and VRBO. Any feedback you could give me I would be very grateful. Cheers!
Never heard of them. Sounds like you’re doing fine without them. I’m seeing cons (you’ll lose Superhost status? Why?) but no pros…
I’ve heard of them, have not used them. I believe they are sponsored by HomeAway, but I could be wrong.
How about this:
You agree to let them represent you on a trial basis, but you keep your own listings as they are (so you do not lose your status). Any reservations they get they earn their commission. Anything you get on your own they do not earn, or earn less.
I agree, going forward, re-upping with HA/VRBO is iffy at best. They seem to be playing catch up with Airbnb, but not very well…
Something sounds wrong with this. If you’re in a rural area why do you need someone to market you? How many competitors do you have?
Is that considered a high ranking on VRBO?
Thanks to all for your responses - actually I do keep my listings and Evolve adds my home to other sites. They are a marketing agent and they will “manage” the listing meaning they respond to inquiries and book my property. They notify me of the bookings but the money goes directly into my account. At the end of the month I pay them their 10% of the money I have collected. They will come and take professional pictures and they tell me they can have me fully booked which I am not now. I had decided to wait a bit - they approached last fall and I had just paid the annual HomeAway fee and received a large booking so I waited but I am usually completely booked by now and I am not right now. Also I usually have quite a few foreign bookings but they are way down but that may be more because of the dollar’s strength. Anyway I thank you for your help.
Well the 25 five star reviews are part of what gets you a high ranking on VRBO/HomeAway along with reponding within an hour, having at least 24 pictures on the listing, keeping your calendar up to date and have completed the tourism materials. In terms of reviews I would say less than half of the VRBO/HomeAway guests leave them which is annoying. I hope this helps explain the high ranking.
Evolve is a separate company - not part of HomeAway/VRBO. Thanks for responding.
What is the domain name of their website? It seems that it isn’t evolve.com
Technically you are correct.
"Evolve is one of HomeAway’s preferred partners in the property management space, offering vacation rental owners wishing to list on HomeAway, the opportunity to utilize the company’s marketing and booking services,” said Bill Furlong, Vice President of HomeAway, Americas. “Evolve does an excellent job helping many owners achieve their booking and rental income goals.”
Thanks to all for your comments and advice. I think we will try it starting in the Fall and see if it increases my bookings. I will let this forum know how it goes. I will lose control of choosing who can book my place but I rarely decline a booking since I require verification so it should work the same. In terms of competition in my rural area, I do have some but since they aren’t making any more waterfront property in Maryland- we have severe restrictions on lot creation on tidal waters in the state- I am in a unique situation being 20 ft from the river. Thanks again and have a most wonderful summer.
Any update on this? I am also looking into Evolve.
@skideeppow So I have just signed up a new property I own in Quebec Canada to see if it moves. Evolve is just finishing preparing the property listing for my current Airbnb and HomeAway VRBO listing. I am not sure how they are optimizing the listing - too early to tell. My Canada listing is not in the major markets yet but it should be soon. I will post an update when I know more. Thanks fir asking.
So i just got off the phone with them and the two problems i see is:
- I lose superhost status
- They current listing which has over 50 reviews, does not transfer to the new listing.
Do you think listing with evolve offsets the lack of review?
Thanks for any feedback
@skideeppow Those are very good questions and I have struggled with the review and superhost status loss - I have 78 Five Star reviews and have been a Superhost since I began with Airbnb 4 years ago. I guess I am going to try and see if listing with Evolve with their optiimzation tools will offset the lack of reviews and since it is my slow season I will see if they can rent my property. My biggest challenge with Evolve is currently for my Canadian property since I believe they have listed it at too high a price for the market and it is in U.S. Dollars which adds approximately 25% to the already high price when converted to Canadian $. I am working on that one. There is also the additional insurance fee that they charge of $14.50 per night which is for property protection and that confuses me as well since Airbnb and HomeAway VRBO have insurance and I usually do a security deposit which is returned to the guest for HomeAway and VRBO renters and is not charged by Airbnb unless I make a claim which I have never had to do in 4 years. Soooo if you are getting a sense of my apprehension about this you are correct but the listings are pretty much complete so I am going to give it a try. I will let you know ho it goes.
So it has been a couple of weeks and pretty disappointing with these guys. There is very little attention to detail. very slow response time via email (as in 24-48 hours).
Last night i received my first booking. Unfortunatly I had to cancel it. It was for the summer of 2018, during a very large food and wine festival. They did not price accordingly and let the 4 day weekend for $185/night. Last year i got $425/night for the same time frame.
They are supposed to price accordingly for special events and holidays.
So my place is a one bedroom one bath, with one of the nicest showers. It is a walk in shower, with a number of daisy heads and side heads, When they put the picture up, they did not even put one of the shower in the listing. That coupled with the above mistake and the lack or response has me thinking i am going to pull the listing from them. Probably give it another week.
@skideeppow Oh sorry to hear of your issues and I have had quite a few as well. The photos of the river we are on and our dock were taken at low tide - really! and I told them they could not use them and sent them photos which they used. So I complained about the pricing- way overpriced for a new listing on Airbnb for our home in Quebec Canada - they will not change it. Also my existing listing they underpriced - the one with 79 Five Star reviews on Airbnb and 30 Five Star reviews on VRBO-HomeAway. We have had no inquires about our Quebec home and it has been up on Evolve for a month and a half. My other listing is the same story - no inquires but I was very booked already for most of October BUT not so of November or December. My husband and I will give Evolve until
the end of 2017 and then pull the listing and manage it ourselves as we always have. The point was Evolve was supposed to optimize the listing and guess what - I looked at my location on HomeAway-VRBO for the Quebec house and it was listed 22 out of 24 listings in the search - WOW really wonderful optimization. Oh well not very happy with Evolve right now.
Yeah, i just cancelled. I took my listing off of hide and am still waiting to hear back from someone there. The lag time between contact and response is crazy.
I have under an hour response time on Airbnb for 100% of my correspondence. These guys are no where near that.
Oh well,lt was worth a try.
@skideeppow Ha - I just cancelled my two llistings with them as well. I cited a number of issues which I am hopeful they may learn from especially the fact that I could not receive funds at my Canadian bank therefore I would have to exchange the funds to American dollars and then back to Canadian dollars since the money I earn from the Quebec property is to suport that property. Oh well you are correct, it was worth a try and now I do not have to wonder about it any longer.
Thanks for your update. Best,
OK, one last thing. I cancelled with them. No one ever called to confirm or ask why i cancelled after 3 weeks.
I am concluding that they have no passion for what they do. They screwed up my listing, my calendar and I would have thought someone would have reached out to see the reason for the cancellation.
They just dont care.