Monthly Archives for July 2017

Tips for Renting Your Wildwood or Cape May Rental

Cape May News, Vacation Rental News - admin - July 28, 2017

If you own a vacation rental in the Wildwood or Cape May area and are on the lookout for more renters there are several things an owner can do to help increase rental income.

Build a Website for your Rental

One of the most important items on any vacation rental owners checklist must be a website. Any owner who wants to effectively market their rental will need a fully bookable website. Renters who visit your website are more likely to book if your rental can be reserved online. A static website provides basic information about your rental with contact information whereas a bookable site can capture rentals with the ease of being able to book online immediately. Owners often have only one chance to impress a potential renter and close the sale (rent your property) and that is when a renter is on your website. One company that offers pre-built websites and an online booking solution for owners is

Keep your availability calendar updated

Renters who find your website or listing will immedialty go to your calendar to look for availability. Owners are more likely to get an inquiry or booking if they have up to date info on availability. Today’s shopper is often pressed for time and wants correct information. If they cant find it they move on.

Use High Quality Images

Whatever means you use to market your vacation rental owners need to display high resolution photos of their rental. The better the photos the more likely a potential renter will take the time to look at the details of your property. Photos should highlight the most important features of your rental like ocean views, porches, roof decks, large living areas, game rooms, bedrooms and more. Your photos are the most important part of your listing. Put up bad photos and a renter will move on to the next listing. Use proper lighting when taking the photos.  Stage your photos. A simple staging technique is to use wine glasses and put fresh flowers on tables. Let your guests picture how they will enjoy your vacation rental.

Market your Rental

All owners who rent need to get the word out about their vacation rental. There are many ways to market a vacation rental. Some owners choose big listing sites like or Recently these sites have undergone major changes in the way owners can list their rentals. Gone is the traditional way of listing a rental that would show owner contact information. Contact information is now blocked. Now owners can no longer communicate directly with renters until a property is booked using the “Instant Book ” feature.  It now appears the big listing sites are moving towards a business model similar to Hotels. In addition, service fees are now charged to guests that book a rental. This added cost has renters looking elsewhere to avoid the service fee which can be hundreds of dollars for a weekly rental.

Local vacation rental listing sites are now offering an alternative to the big listing sites. It turns out local listing sites have an inherent advantage when it comes to search engines. Local listing sites do not have to pay to place on Major search engines. Local listing sites are recognized as being “relevant” to search engines due to the location. Google, Bing and Yahoo reward local listing sites with search prominence over big listing sites due to to this “relevancy” in the local market. The big listing sites must pay to be found in local markets. Look at any result for a vacation rental search and you will see paid results at the top. Below the paid results are the organic or free results. These are the local relevant sites. Many searchers avoid the paid links and look locally for a rental. is a local listing service offering traditional listings without service fees. also allows open communication between renter and owner. Another very important feature about local listing sites. Many will allow owners to put a link to their rentals website. The big listing sites do not.

These are just a few tips to help vacation rental owners in Wildwood and Cape May area effectively market their rentals. Happy Renting!


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Can you really own a Vacation House for Free

Vacation Rental News - admin - July 27, 2017

Can you really own a vacation house for free? There are several shows on TV right now that say that you can. Even if the answer is yes, its not easy. One popular show Vacation House for Free shows owners how to find the right property to fix up and rent out during the high season to break even or even turn a profit.

There are many factors that go into choosing the right rental for an investment. The adage location, location is still the key factor. When looking for a rental many buyers will buy where they have vacationed previously. This is especially typical for many Jersey Shore rentals.

So, what do you look for in a vacation that will produce enough income to pay the bills?

How long is the rental season?

Many rentals are seasonal. This means your rental is in demand for a specific season more than others. Homes along the Jersey shore are summer seasonal. Typically, the season is June through September. The most productive rental is the rental with the longest seasonal appeal. There are certain rental locations that are busy 356 days out of the year. Research the area and determine the average rental season.

What are the cost associated with owning a vacation rental?

There are many costs associated with owning a vacation rental.  Advertising, maintenance, insurance, mortgage, condo fees if applicable, cleaning, replacing damaged items, and many processing rent payments. building a website, property taxes and more. You may be able to meet y9our monthly mortgage payment but as you can see there are many other expenses involved. Also, you may have an off year and will want to factor in rent loss for bad years.

How do owners take care of a vacation rental when they do not live near the property?

Many owners hire a property maintenance company or person on call. This is an additional cost but a vital one for operations. Often owners are faced with calls from renters who may have issues that require onsite vests.

What do renters want in a vacation rental?

Know your market before buying. If it is a beach rental many renters want to be near the beach. Rents typically are much higher the closer you get to the Beach. Stock your rental with the things guests will want while on vacation. Books, games, movies, bike racks, sleeper sofas are just a few of the typical items guests use while at a rental.

Why are repeat guest so important?

The cost to acquire a renter can be very expensive. Advertising can typically cost hundreds of dollars per rental on popular listing sites. If an owner can build a following of guests who come back year after year there is less of a need to advertise. Many owners of rentals have the same guests book the same week each year. There is another plus to repeat or return guests. You know them. You know your property will not be abused. Some owners do not require a security deposit for repeats.

How can a buyer save money when looking for the right rental?

Many buyers look for the cheapest rental in the area and fix it up. Buyers need to calculate the costs associated with a fixer upper versus buying new or recently remodeled.

So can you really own a vacation house for free? As you can see the answer depends on many factors. Owning a vacation home can be an enriching and rewarding experience but it can also be a costly one. Choose wisely.

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Tips for Renting your Jersey Shore Vacation Home in the Offseason

Vacation Rental News - admin - July 23, 2017

Vacation rentals often have a high season and a low season. High season would be considered June through Mid-September at The Jersey Shore. Low season or off-season would be the remaining months.

Many owners are missing out on the extra income that can be generated during the offseason. Here are a few tips to help fill your availability calendar during the offseason.

  • Market your off-season to your Summer renters

Your summer rentals are easy to market to when it comes to off-season bookings. Reward your repeat guest with discounts. Build loyalty by offering discounts as a special thank you for choosing to stay with you during the summer season. Some owners offer off-season coupons that can be used on their websites during the booking process.

  • Lower the Price during the off-season

Off-season travelers tend to be more budget conscious. Offer lower pricing to renters. Off-season rental income even though discounted can make for a successful rental year.

  • Market off-season events

Off-season tourists are often looking for a weekend getaway. Many towns have unique events throughout the year on weekends. Cape May, New Jersey has a very busy Christmas season. If you have a website update your content with off-season events in the area.

  • Market your rental to co-workers

A great resource for off-season rentals are your co-workers. Many of your coworkers may already know about your rental. Offer them discounts during the off-season.

  • Offer Free Nights

Offer an extra night when your guests book. Many guests would like to extend a weekend stay. Offer the 3rd night free or any other variation like stay 6 nights get the 7th free.

If you’re looking for additional income for your vacation rental the offseason can be very rewarding. Every owner should know their market and what guests are looking for during an offseason stay.


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8 things you need to know before buying a vacation rental at the Jersey Shore

Vacation Rental News - admin - July 20, 2017

Repairs Happen

Things break. Dishwashers, refrigerators and other appliances will need replacing. Air conditioning and heating units need maintenance. Renters can and will damage property. Be prepared for the unexpected expenses that can come at any time when owning a vacation rental.


Check-in Check-out Days

Many owners rent Saturday to Saturday. This creates traffic Armageddon. Now owners are moving the check-in check-out days to Friday and even Sundays.

Vacation Rental values can fluctuate.

Markets fluctuate. Stocks go up and down. So, does real estate. There are many factors that can affect the value of a vacation rental. If you are buying a rental expecting equity growth you need to understand there is risk in very investment.

Home Owner or Condo Fees always go up

Be prepared for yearly increases in Home Owner Association fees or Condo fees. Expenses go up just like your primary home. Expect a yearly increase in your dues.

Rental History

Get documented proof of a history. Many owners will have records of yearly rental income and expenses.

In Season- Off Season

Know what the rental season is. How many weeks can you expect to rent. Most shore homes rent during the summer season and that’s it. However, towns like Cape May have longer rental seasons.

Who will you call when your renters need help?

Every owner of a rental needs a backup person to handle emergency calls. Many owners live far away from their rental. Some own a Wildwood rental and live in Philadelphia. Be prepared for the unexpected calls.

You may not use your rental as much as expected

Many owners think they will be down the shore every weekend during the off season or slow rental period. Life can be busy. Taking time to visit your rental can be difficult.

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5 Tips to Earn More from a Vacation Rental

Vacation Rental News - admin - July 14, 2017

Accept credit cards

Many renters want the convenience of paying for a rental with their credit card. By accepting credit cards owners open their rental a wider audience. Credit cards often come with the added expense of transaction fees. However, owners can charge a convenience fee for credit card use to help offset the expense.

Charge for linens

If owners charge for linens it can often be a way to increase revenue. A cleaning service must be found that will offer linen service in addition to normal cleaning duties.

Collect Taxes

Collect local taxes. Many guests expect to pay taxes. Most rental transactions are the same taxes a hotel will often pay.” The rate is usually variable and averages around 6 – 12 percent.

Advertise your property

One of the most important and effective way to increase revenue is to use cost effective advertising. Owners should look for local listing services in their area to advertise. Many of the local listing services are much less expensive than large national listing services. Local listing sites can be much more effective and offer better exposure.

Offer extras to your guests

Guests compare rentals. They look for what differentiates one rental from another. Offer better amenities like more cable channels, free Wi-Fi, beach tags and more. The more amenities you can offer the better. It’s the little thigs that keep renters returning year after year to the same property.



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The Washington Street Mall in Cape May

Cape May News - admin - July 13, 2017

Cape May Washington Street Mall

The Cape May Washington Street Mall

The Washington Street Mall is an open air shopping mall that offers visitors one location to shop for everything Cape May and more. Located one block to the beach, the mall is open throughout the year. Visitors can browse candy stores, jewelry shops, clothing stores, pet stores, ice cream shops, peanut butter shops, and eclectic shops that stock unique souvenirs.

Visitors can relax on any of the benches that line the pathway or beside the large fountains that offer a cool breeze during the warm months. There are many restaurants offering fresh seafood, and visitors can enjoy live music on weekends. Some of the restaurants offer outdoor seating and BYOB. Park you car and you will never need it again. every shop is within waking distance

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Carriage Rides in Cape May

Cape May News - admin - July 13, 2017


Information Courtesy of Cape May Carriage Company

Visitors can take an historic buggy ride through the Cape May Historic District and see all of the sights and sounds.

The Cape May Carriage Company offers (weather and business permitting) half-hour tours on weekends during the spring and fall months, daily during the summer and during the Christmas season.

Call 609-884-4466 to see if we are running right now! 
Sorry, no phone reservations for tours.

Online reservations stop at midnight the night before the ride…then you must come in person that day to reserve!

All carriage tours leave from the corner of Ocean Street and the Washington Street Mall and tickets can be purchased during regular business hours for the same day. Cash or travelers checks. Sorry, NO credit or debit cards.

No refunds will be issued except in the case of inclement weather. No exceptions. Check your ticket before leaving for correct time and carriage.

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Ghosts of The Emlen Physick Estate in Cape May

Cape May News - admin - July 12, 2017

Courtesy of MAC

cape may rentals

The Emlin Physick Estate in Cape May

Cape May is reputedly one of America’s most haunted towns, and nowhere else is this reputation so well-earned as at the 1879 Emlen Physick Estate, Cape May’s original haunted house.

For years, MAC’s staffers had felt they were not alone in the house, but it was not until psychic medium Craig McManus began his investigations into the town’s paranormal activities that those who were not regular members of the MAC staff were identified.

McManus, who has written three books about Cape May’s hauntings and has documented spirit activity at dozens of the town’s quaint B&B inns and hotel properties, has spent a great deal of time at the Physick house and has identified several of its residents.

Most prominent among them is Dr. Physick’s Aunt Emilie, who has great energy and a vibrant smile, according to McManus.

“This is a ghost who knows everything that is going on in her home,” McManus wrote. He also explained that, after her death, Emilie had stayed on to watch over the house, which had fallen into disrepair before its restoration began in 1970.

Dr. Physick’s mother, Frances Ralston, is no longer in the house, according to McManus, but the strong presence she exerted in her lifetime is still felt as “residual energy,” especially in her bedroom on the second floor, the paranormal hot spot of the home.

Another resident is Isabelle, or Bella, Mrs. Ralston’s invalid younger sister, who died in 1883, shortly after the family moved into the mansion.

Four-footed spirits…

Among the unique spirits that McManus has reported are several of Dr. Physick’s dogs. He encountered several in the house on his first visit, and one romping through the gardens on a later visit. Apparently, there is some disturbance when the dogs are about, because they were never allowed in the house by Mrs. Ralston. Aunt Emilie, however, had a softer spot for Dr. Physick’s canine companions, and prepared their dinners in the estate’s kitchen, and would let them in the house when Mrs. Ralston was absent.

The estate’s Carriage House also has its resident spirit, which has been heard by several of the MAC staff whose offices are on the building’s second floor. McManus said this could be one of the servants, possibly a groomsman or driver.

One of MAC’s most popular ghost tours is Midnight at the Physick Estate, where McManus leads a group of 25 people through the house to commune with its spirit residents.

“Cape May’s original haunted house never disappoints,” McManus wrote about a recent tour. “It was one of the best haunting experiences I have had in my career!

“There are very few real haunted mansions of this caliber that are open to the public,” he wrote in his book. “If you love the paranormal, this is a must visit!”

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Cape May County Zoo Hours

Cape May News - admin - July 12, 2017

The Cape May Zoo is one of the best zoos in America and it is right outside of Cape May. Take the kids and family to see the Zoo! Its FREE!

A Tiger at Cape May Zoo

Zoo Hours & Fees

Admission to the zoo is free, but we recommend a donation at the entrance gate. (609) 465-5271

How to get there: Off Rte. 9 in Cape May Court House. Take Exit 11 off the Parkway. Go through the traffic light into the zoo entrance.

Zoo Hours: Open daily, weather permitting (closed Christmas)
10:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (Summer Hours)
10:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. (Winter Hours)

Park Hours: 9:00 a.m. to Dusk

View the zoo map (PDF – off site)

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Cape May – A Resort for All Seasons

Cape May News - admin - July 9, 2017

We are often asked what makes Cape May different from other shore towns. The obvious answer is the architecture. No other town in Cape May features block after block of historic homes. However there is one other major difference.

Cape May Rentals are alive and thriving throughout the entire year. Whereas other shore towns have a brief rental season of 12-15 weeks Cape Mays rental season is year round. Cape May is always bustling with activity. Cape May boasts the year-round array of restaurants, night clubs, shopping or festivals. Cape May is unique, having everything from bed and breakfasts to open farm land, an The Washington Street Mall, beachfront clubs and restaurants, horse-drawn carriage rides and more.

Several types of rentals are available. Cape May pet friendly rentals offer pet lovers the ability to bring Fido on vacation. Cape May condo rentals offer renters the choice of having a Cape May vacation rental with a pool. Cape May home rentals offer families multiple bedrooms and baths for all the comforts of home.

Cape May in the Summer is the busiest season. Cape May rentals are booked far in advance to ensure the best rentals are reserved.

Cape May in the Fall is a favorite time of the year for many return guests. Every year Jackson Street is closed off for the Oktoberfest. The entire street is filled with vendors featuring crafts, German food, beer, music and more. The annual Halloween Parade is a favorite for many locals and visitors.

Cape May in the Winter is the most beautiful time of the year. Many of the homes are decorated in period decorations and lighting. The horse carriages are strung with lights and the drivers are dressed for the part. Warm blankets make the ride cozy.

Cape May in the Spring is a time of fresh blooms and flower baskets hanging from the large front porches that line the streets. Beautiful gardens surrounded by white picket fences adorn the streets.

No matter what time of the year a visit to Cape May can be made special by choosing the perfect location for your getaway. Cape May Vacation Rentals offers some of the most charming rentals in Cape May to enjoy all year long.





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