Harbour Island/more growling

Jun 21st, 2005, 03:45 PM
  #1  
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Harbour Island/more growling

The subject refers to another post to "wantsomesun". Although she is the Harbour Island expert, this is more of a general question to all the experts here.

Finally, a homeowner responded to my inquiry to rent his property for the month of February.

His online calendar shows availability for the entire month. I did inquire about a multiple week booking discount, but indicated in my email that was not of great importance...but availability for the month was.

I was summarily dismissed by the homeowner, and told to do more research for a property of more appropriate size.

Who should determine what size of rental property is appropriate ? If I'm willing to spend the $$ for the time and the space, isn't it within the bounds of the law to rent to anyone ?

I would hope this dilemma of mine, would prompt some conversation and opinions. I certainly don't feel like donning my flame suit tonight !

Thanks !

Marion





His email to me

MarionCK is offline  
Jun 21st, 2005, 04:18 PM
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Marion:

I thought villas could be rented regardless of the amount of people in the party. I've never heard of someone turning down money before, especially for a multiple week rental.

You might want to e-mail Robert Arthur, the owner of Arthur's Bakery on Harbour Island. He maintains www.myharbourisland.com and he supposedly responds to random e-mails. It might be worth your while to e-mail him ([email protected])and ask him to get you in touch with a realtor who actually wants to rent properties out.

Good luck with your villa search. I think my husband and I will be visiting Harbour Island next May and staying at the Coral Sands Hotel. I came across the aforementioned website during my endless hours of trip planning.
mah1980 is offline  
Jun 21st, 2005, 04:37 PM
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Thats just plan silly of him.I would not care if I owned the villa as long as it would accomadate everyone traveling if it was 1 or 10 people.I would find someone else if he is trying to be hard to get along with.Yes I would think that it is within the bounds of the law to rent to anyone.
christiegr is offline  
Jun 21st, 2005, 04:47 PM
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Thanks mah...

It's actually Robert Arthur's site that has provided the best information, but most properties are handled by Island Realty.

I guess I should call them, as wantsomesun suggested.

I just have an easier time with visual learning at this stage of my life..thus my love of email. I absolutely HATE the phone !

And you're right, I've never heard of anyone turning money down either. I was absolutely shocked at his response, and obviously more than a little annoyed !

If this owner represents the *feel* of Harbour Island, perhaps I should look elsewhere.

Marion


MarionCK is offline  
Jun 21st, 2005, 05:01 PM
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Thanks Christie for your response. I guess it came in while I was typing to mah.

He owns the property, he can pick and choose at will, or so it would seem...but I agree with your observation that he is silly to reject a month's rental.

Marion

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Jun 21st, 2005, 05:01 PM
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I too detest communicating by the phone. I think online communication is far more efficient, especially in regard to hotel/villa research. I've gotten to the point that I prefer buying most everything on the internet. I definitely judge a hotel by their website; I figure if a hotel does not put the effort into having an adequate number of pictures on their website, then they have something to hide.

In doing my research for our recent trip to Turks and Caicos, I quickly found out that many small business owners and proprietors don't feel the same way about the internet as we do. I would not be turned off by the lack of responses on Harbour Island. You might want to call Robert Arthur and ask him for a name.

Also, did you look at www.tradewindtours.com? It's a pretty good website and if you look at their "Bahamas" page you'll see that you can look at villas. It might be more helpful to have a middle man, especially if the villa owners/realtors themselves are slow in responding to your inquiries.

I just looked at vrbo.com and found a couple of possibilities for you and it appears that some of the rental property owners live in the US. Look at http://www.vrbo.com/42866, http://www.vrbo.com/43502, http://www.vrbo.com/43932.
mah1980 is offline  
Jun 21st, 2005, 05:08 PM
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keep in mind that on islands, not only do most computers have dial up, (Slooooow) but their systems go down alot. Combine it with the "slow down" caribbean work pace, don't be discouraged, if they don't answer in a week, give them a quick call.
blamona is offline  
Jun 21st, 2005, 05:18 PM
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How many people are you looking to put into this villa??? Maybe he doesn't want his property trashed !!! Or his septic tank won't handle the overload. It's his perogative.



Scubagirl is offline  
Jun 21st, 2005, 05:24 PM
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Marion:

Your welcome.I just noticed that the pp before me asked how many are going with you..I thought that I read that you are taking this vacation alone on another post??Am I right? PS..I wish that I could take one alone..it would be great to just relax and read a good book.
christiegr is offline  
Jun 21st, 2005, 05:55 PM
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Sorry.. hadn't read your other post.

Maybe they figured they wouldn't make the extra bucks with a single. Like Private chefs, nanny's etc. Maybe they get a kick back from outside vendors. Just a guess.
Scubagirl is offline  
Jun 21st, 2005, 06:10 PM
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scubagirl:

I am not sure if she IS traveling solo just thought that I read it.
christiegr is offline  
Jun 21st, 2005, 07:08 PM
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Well...after being blocked out by Fodor's for the last few hours, I'll try to respond before I'm blocked again.

To those friends who received private emails asking to explain my lack of response...thanks.

Was it Mel Brooks or Carl Reiner who coined the phrase "even paranoids have a few real enemies" ? Maybe it was one of my therapists ;-) !

Mah...what will this board do with two "type A's" ? VRBO was one of the first sites I checked ...still waiting for a response.

Scubagirl...if you didn't read my other post I understand. It's just me...solo. Which is one of the reasons I couldn't understand the reasoning of the owner.

Christie...you do read everything;-)...and I think I have used "solo" many times here. It seems a better phrase than "alone" or "by myself" ;-)...so I would rent to me over a large group.

Blamona...I appreciate your thoughts on computer access on HI. My frustration is that I have emailed property owners, here in the US, and they don't respond either.

Thank you all for your thoughts. My post, this evening, was intended to generate conversation. It was not intended to *bash* property owners on HI. I'm still not sure why Fodor's took offense.

I hope this makes it through !

Marion

MarionCK is offline  
Jun 21st, 2005, 07:40 PM
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Simple economics and finances in the world of villa rentals....especially during "high" season where demand drives the price. More guests per villa = more money to the owner....just check out the rates on any villa. There are usually rates for 1-2, 3-4, 4-6 guests and so on. All incrementally higher than the last. It is common to receive $50/night, per person, during high season on a villa priced per week for 2. Do the math....that could be an additional $200 per night or $1400 per week if rented to a party of 6. The owner of the villa will incur approximately the same expenses for utilities, management fees (if any) and cleaning fees be it 1 guest or 10. If I am an owner of a villa with availability during one of the "hottest" rental months of the year, and it is still June today, I would probably give you the same answer. Maybe with a bit more tact. This is a business for them, and trust me, there isn't much beyond breaking even at best. Being able to keep and afford the rental property in "paradise" is, more often than not, the only reason why villa owners rent their private homes out. I'd be selective as well. Probably not what you wanted to hear, but that is about as honest as it gets. Trashing villa owners doesn't win you any favors in the long run, by the way. A hotel is a great option for you from the sounds of it. Or travel in the off-season when the demand isn't as great. Good luck!
CaribbeanSoul is offline  
Jun 21st, 2005, 07:42 PM
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That was meant to read $50/pp/night extra over the 2 person weekly rental rate.
CaribbeanSoul is offline  
Jun 21st, 2005, 08:10 PM
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I just had a thought way you may not be hearing back from your emails. Island Realty handles most of the rentals on island, so the owners don't have to spend the extra time spent in co-ordinating rentals, getting credit cards, accepting monies, etc.

That's why I suggested calling Island Realty and letting them know what you are looking for and what you are looking to spend and let them take care of alot of the details for you. They can also email you pictures of other houses that might be available as well.

Also June is off season, so Island Realty may have people on vacation as well.



Hope this helps.
wantsomesun is offline  
Jun 21st, 2005, 08:16 PM
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Caribbean Soul,

I probably did not give enough information regarding this property.

It is the same price... during every season (except at Christmas)...no matter the number of occupants or number of bedrooms used.

And that was my gripe...why does the owner care how many are there, if the dollars in his pocket are the same.

Some of your figures make sense when renting a villa in Jamaica, where there is staff to consider/tip.

On HI these are not villas and there is no staff.

I'm not "trashing" villa owners. I have stated here that a private home/villa, whatever the vernacular of choice, is a far more comfortable setting for someone traveling solo.

If I wanted a hotel, I could certainly find one. I'm looking for a different kind of lodging.

Single travelers pay many premiums for being single...just look at the cruise industry, or some of the *upscale* AI's such as Peter Island. It's all double occupancy or with a nominal reduction.

My long-winded point here...is that this owner didn't want the same amount of money from me, as he will take from a couple or two or three.

I still can't see the logic in that.

Marion

MarionCK is offline  
Jun 21st, 2005, 09:20 PM
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Thanks wantsomesun,

I certainly didn't mean to bring you into the middle of a *brooh ha ha* (now there's an expression from our generation ) !

I now realize that February is more of a prime season than I thought.

So...I've adjusted my budget upwards and I guess I will have to pick up the **** phone to get something accomplished.

As stated above, it was never my intention to bash the island or the homeowners. It's just the old Yankee in me that wants to get things settled ;-) !

I'll keep you posted on what I hope will be my success. I'll want to *pick your brain* about some volunteer work that I might do with the children or the elderly.

I'll reread your posts but I do remember that my first stop will be to buy something from Miss Sarah

Marion
MarionCK is offline  
Jun 21st, 2005, 11:28 PM
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There are lots of volunteer opportunities on island, like the Harbour Island Day Nursery. It is a kind of day care facility for the children on the island so Mom knows they are well cared for while they are at work. I always stop there when on island and teach a song or a game or 2. YOu would certainly be most welcome there.

Another idea would be to help out at the Library. The Library is always looking for help for the computer room to teach computer skills.

There is a store on island that is for the Day Nursery. All profits go to the Day Nursery and they have art from local artists and nice gifty things.

A bit closer to your trip, I will put you in touch with locals there who will certainly welcome any help you would like to give.
wantsomesun is offline  
Jun 22nd, 2005, 06:18 AM
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Private villa owners are, alas, human too, which means they can be as weird and unreasonable as the next guy. In fact, we rented a villa called "Fantastic View" in St. John once and that guy was just so completely off his rock. He quoted us a flat rate for the week as was also posted on his web site, and when we had our parents come out with us, he insisted we leave the villa or give him more money. He also never returned our deposit despite the fact that we left the villa in better shape than we found it. Later on, we found out from realtors that the guy is absolutely notorious for very dissatisfied renters. One disgruntled renter allegedly poured gasoline into his cistern! So, the moral of the story is Marion, maybe you dodged a bullet by not renting from this guy if he's unreasonable right off the bat. And never rent "Fantastic View" on St. John. Too bad, too. It was a fantastic view.
Tuxedocat is offline  
Jun 22nd, 2005, 06:33 AM
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Tuxedocat,

You are absolutely right !

I was just so frustrated about his dismissive and condescending manner.

My *rules of life* are a combination of logic, reason and the demon of emotion ;-) !

Maybe it's time to change my rules !

Marion
MarionCK is offline  

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