Property management company Hostmaker has partnered with long term listings site Spotahome to diversify its offerings.
Hostmaker, which largely deals in short-lets and holiday bookings across sites including Airbnb, HomeAway, Onefinestay and Booking.com, is now going to list its inventory across Spotahome’s website in an effort to optimise income for tourist and Airbnb-style landlords whose properties might otherwise be unoccupied in the ‘low season’.
Spotahome, which was launched in March 2014 and describes itself as an ‘100% online booking platform’, specialises in listing longer-term lets in major European cities such as London, Barcelona, Madrid, Rome and Lisbon.
As a result, Spotahome provides exposure for Hostmaker to longer-term bookings beyond the 30-day maximum stay of some holiday booking sites, enabling the firm to meet rental regulation requirements in a number of cities where there are restrictions in minimum lengths of stay.
According to Spotahome and Hostmaker, the mid-term residential rental market is proving popular among those tenants who can’t commit to or be locked in to a full 12-month term. This includes students, visiting professors, business executives relocating, or temporary contractors.
David Grey, head of yield management at Hostmaker, said: “Spotahome provides access to a market that can cater for the low season, that guarantees income for the property owner so they can stabilise income over the year and utilise short lets for peak seasons. Regulation in London provides an opportunity that most other cities do not have; the flexibility of very short stays and those that do not neatly fit into six-month plus.”
With local rental regulation needing to be adhered to across Europe, Hostmaker requires access to channels that will attract longer booking terms to remain compliant, something which is particularly relevant in Barcelona (where minimum stays are 32 days) and Berlin (where they are two months).
“Where landlords want longer term tenancy agreements, they feel more comfortable with a more flexible approach to ensure they are meetings the standards of regulation,” Grey added. “But also we are finding external stakeholders can influence the type of rental lengths, especially where the property owner must meet building management demands or wants to maintain good relationships with neighbours - notably where they are more accepting if renters are staying a while.”
The firms say they have a shared ambition to raise standards in the property rental market, in terms of both quality of property as well as the listing and immediacy of bookings. “We are excited about the growing working relationship with Hostmaker as we develop our systems to respond to its market needs,” James Heffer of Spotahome said.
Spotahome, a Madrid-based PropTech venture, is now developing its platform to be fully integrated with big suppliers that offer entire properties and which usually work with holiday rental platforms.
“Currently a majority of our listings come from HMOs, ASTs and Licence Agreements managed by property managers and lettings agents who normally advertise on property classifieds and these suppliers work differently from how property management companies like Hostmaker work,” Heffer added.
“Spotahome moves the residential rentals viewings process online for lettings agents and property managers, thereby fully digitising the marketing process. This allows them to focus on their core activities, including property management and acquisition - avoiding the time-intensive scheduling and management of live viewings - bringing the rental industry online and inline with consumer expectations.”