COVID-19 has severely impacted almost every industry across the globe and the hotel industry was, unfortunately, one of the hardest hit. Even in countries where lockdown restrictions have been lifted or dialed down, the industry continues to struggle.
A possible reason is that most travelers are still wondering whether staying in a hotel is worth the risk. People have reported concern over potential germs left over by past guests, high turnover of rooms, use of shared spaces, and the inability of housekeeping staff to thoroughly clean all rooms.
As the industry tries to get back on its feet, let’s look ahead and examine why expanding into the extended stay market through Homelike is an excellent way for hotels to adapt to the crisis. At Homelike, we have thoroughly reviewed our internal data and gathered insights from third parties to help our partners navigate the uncertainties and build a fact-based recovery strategy.
1. Extended stay market offers better cash flow during uncertain times
Daily pricing is often more lucrative for hotels than monthly pricing. However, in the current scenario, sustaining a regular and stable cash flow may be more crucial than profitability per stay to preserve the business. With fluctuating COVID numbers across Europe, it is almost impossible to reliably forecast demand for short-stay properties.
Although entering the extended stay market involves pricing your inventory at 30 to 50% lower than short-term rates, current real estate trends indicate that the long-stay segment will bounce back sooner than the short term rental market. This means that it will be easier to maintain safe cash flow levels and keep the business afloat.
In addition, we also work with a number of B2B and relocation companies who have reported an increase in relocation needs. You can take advantage of this trend by listing your own properties on the Homelike marketplace.
2. Mid to long-term guests and extended ‘workations’ could be the new normal
COVID-19 has changed the world in unimaginable ways. Airbnb recently reported a rise in people booking months-long stays. With office buildings closed in many cities and flexible remote work options to boot, employees with means are opting to work from locations of their own choosing. Many hotels have reported an uptick in reservations of 30 days and more from people looking to ride out the storm or kill the quarantine boredom elsewhere during the pandemic.
The world’s newfound geographical freedom isn’t the only reason for this shift. With historically low travel demand, many airlines have had to cut back on the number of flights they operate. In addition, strict lockdowns and travel restrictions are in effect in many countries along with mandatory self-quarantine for travelers arriving from other countries. A combination of all these factors makes travel between countries extremely cumbersome.
Even in a post-COVID world, many companies will likely want to shrink down their real estate and rental expenses by allowing their employees to continue the work from home model.
Homelike’s extended stay marketplace can help you leverage your resources the right way to return to a sustainable recovery scenario.
3. Long-term rentals have lower operating costs
COVID-19 has forced the lodging industry to make many tough decisions. A vast majority of the hotels were required to shut shop entirely due to local regulations and restrictions, causing unprecedented financial losses and a severely diminished cash flow.
While the profound impacts of the pandemic continue to ravage our industry, a transition into the extended stay business model would allow hotels to substantially reduce operating costs such as housekeeping, laundering, and toiletries as well as administrative costs related to check-in and check-out.
Homelike’s strong and trusted brand presence in the extended stay market can help your hotel reach and attract long stay guests looking for temporary accommodation for a month or more in most major cities in Europe.
4. Extended stays are considered safer
With personal kitchens and laundry facilities as well as lower exposure to shared facilities, furnished apartments are considered safer by most tenants in the pandemic era. People who stay in short-stay hotels are exposed to germs left behind by hundreds of previous occupants.
In addition, there is a higher likelihood of encountering many different people in short-stay hotels thereby increasing the chances of contracting an infection.
5. Listing with Homelike is easy and entirely free
Homelike’s apartment listing feature is extremely user-friendly even for first-time users and digital laggards. Moreover, it is entirely free. You pay only a small commission for every confirmed booking through our portal. With just a few clicks and entries, you can create listings and rent out your furnished properties to both corporate and individual customers.
If required, the Homelike Team will help you create eye-catching listings that are likely to appeal to your target audience. All rental agreements are signed online through our easy-to-use Homelike Property Management System. Other advantages of the Homelike PMS include:
- Integration via iCal, Channel Manager, or your existing PMS
- Intelligent system to avoid vacancies
- Mobile property management from your smartphone
6. We market your apartment for free in over 100 channels
Have you been struggling to raise your occupancy rates? Although hotel occupancy rates have begun to rebound in Europe, it still remains far from optimal. A recent report by Hotel News Resource puts the current rate at 44.6% to 43.0% driven mainly by Germany and the Netherlands. Now, the million-dollar question is whether you have identified your pandemic recovery strategy.
Homelike can assist in jumpstarting your efforts and accelerating your revenue recovery plan through our extensive digital outreach capabilities. Our sales and marketing experts have extensive experience catering to the requirements of the extended stay market. We will advertise your apartments on more than 100 different channels.
We have already put in the work and built a strong web presence on major digital platforms such as Google and Facebook as well as popular property rental websites and metasearch engines all over Europe.
Using our network of tools and resources can help get your properties discovered by millions of potential tenants all over the world.
Despite vigorous crisis management efforts in many countries worldwide, there is no end in sight for the issues facing the hospitality industry at the moment. Even though most COVID hotspots have shifted outside continental Europe, many European CEOs still expect the economic recovery to be a slow process as mentioned in www.visualcapitalist.com.
The best solution to navigate the current landscape is to rethink our product and service offerings to accommodate the rapidly evolving needs of COVID-era tenants. Homelike is firmly committed to helping you preserve your business and implementing a revised business model based on existing needs.