In the short-term rental industry, novice property owners, vacation rental managers, and experienced real estate investors can all gain to learn something STR-related from the vast wealth of knowledge out there. Fortunately, enrolling in a top-notch short-term rental course can help unlock your potential and master the art (and science!) of vacation rental management.
In this article, we will explore the advantages of these courses and help you find the perfect fit for your needs.
The benefits of short-term rental courses
The advantages of enrolling in a short-term rental course are multifaceted as they can provide you with invaluable insights into best practices and industry trends.
- Gain insider knowledge: For starters, many courses rely on firsthand experienced professionals who have successfully navigated the industry. These experts will share their insights, tips, and tricks, giving you a competitive edge in the market. You will learn about the latest trends in short-term rentals, such as the rise of niche markets and the importance of personalization in guest experiences.
- Advance your marketing strategies: STR courses equip you with the in-demand skills necessary to excel—from SEO marketing strategies to effective communication techniques. Marketing plays a crucial role in the success of any short-term rental business. And in today’s digital marketing landscape, learning how to create compelling listings, optimize your website for search engines, and leverage social media platforms to attract guests is essential.
- Optimize your pricing strategies: By enrolling in top classes, you will also gain insights into pricing strategies, understanding how to set competitive rates that maximize your revenue while appealing to potential guests.
- Build effective communication: Effective communication is another vital skill that you will develop through short-term rental courses. You will learn how to communicate with guests in a professional and friendly manner, ensuring their needs are met and their expectations are exceeded. Additionally, you will gain insights into conflict resolution, learn how to handle difficult situations, and maintain positive guest relationships.
- Learn with freedom and flexibility: One of the greatest benefits of short-term rental education is the flexibility and convenience it offers. With online courses and video lessons, you have the freedom to learn at your own pace and from anywhere in the world, fitting your studies around your busy schedule. The global reach allows you to connect with individuals from different backgrounds and gain diverse perspectives on the short-term rental industry.
- Create a valuable network: Moreover, short-term rental courses often offer networking opportunities. Through online forums, webinars, and virtual meetups, you can connect with like-minded individuals who share your passion for the industry. These connections can lead to valuable collaborations, partnerships, and mentorship opportunities, further enriching your learning experience.
How to find the right STR course
So how do you find the ideal short-term rental(s) course to fit your needs? There are numerous reputable vacation rental industry courses available (largely online), each offering unique learning experiences and covering differing business goals and budgets. Let’s look at a few of our top picks.
VRMA certification program
The Vacation Rental Management Association (VRMA) is renowned for its comprehensive courses that cover all aspects of short-term rental management. From marketing and pricing strategies to legal considerations, VRMA equips you with the knowledge necessary to thrive in a competitive market. Networking opportunities with industry professionals give you the chance to connect with like-minded individuals and experts in the field, so you can build valuable relationships—at annual VRMA conferences and beyond.
- 5 module package ($450 for VRMA members, $750 for non-members), certification applicable
- Individual modules start at $150 for VRMA members, $450 for non-members
The STR certification is a college-level, flexible self-guided online-approved educational course for STR permit applicants. With quizzes and an online final exam, this course covers industry regulations and accounting, marketing, and reservations, guest/neighbor relations, maintenance, housekeeping, design and decor, security and guest safety, multi-property management, tech devices and innovations, and more. Taught by Vacation Rental Management 411 author Julie Davies, this course requires at least 14 hours of coursework before the final.
- STR Certification is $295 – $550
- The seminars range from $75 – $145
Vacation Rental University (VRU)
If you are focused on improving your hosting skills and creating memorable guest experiences, Vacation Rental University is an excellent choice. Their course explores customer service techniques, interior design tips, and effective communication strategies, enabling you to become a standout host (or superhost!).
Vacation Rental University offers hands-on workshops and simulations, allowing you to practice your hosting skills in a realistic setting. This experiential learning approach ensures that you not only understand the theory but also gain the confidence to apply it in real-world scenarios.
- Range of packages: Basic (Free), Masters (lifetime access at $495 or monthly plan for $49/month), Enterprise (custom pricing and plan), 1:1 consultation (custom pricing and plan)
- Offers VRUREALTORCertification course
Short-Term Rental Profit Academy
Founded by industry experts Jasper Ribbers and Eric D. Moeller, the Short-Term Rental Profit Academy provides a host of offerings (STR Legends and the Short-Term Rental Inner Circle which includes a Facebook community, and live training).
The program focuses on real estate wealth building, direct bookings, management, and STR business topics like scaling and automation. Their site also offers recommendations for the best STR management apps and tools.
- Package approximately $1500
Vacation Rental Secrets
For those seeking insider knowledge and expert advice, the Vacation Rental Secrets course is a top contender. This course delves into advanced strategies for maximizing rental income, optimizing listings, and dealing with challenging situations, giving you the tools to excel as a short-term rental manager.
What sets Vacation Rental Secrets apart is its focus on industry trends and emerging technologies. Vacation Rental Secrets’ founder, Antonio Bortolotti, hosts the Vacation Rental World Summit and offers 1-on-1 consulting. This continuous learning environment sets you up for long-term success in the industry.
- Offers 3 modules at $197 per module
- 60-minute 1:1 sessions start at $125
Short-Term Rental University
Short Term Rental University, run by entrepreneur and AirbnbSuperhost Richard Fertig, offers a holistic approach to short-term rental education. Whether you’re interested in 1-on-1 consultation, live events, online courses, or free YouTube courses, Short Term Rental University can help.
What makes Short Term Rental University stand out is its focus on practicality and applicability. They also provide direct booking site directions and guidebook creation options. Plus, Fertig runs the program so all courses are designed by him, resulting in accessible firsthand training.
- Self paced course package is $1,995
- 1:1 sessions start at $1,500
Udemy offers a vast library of short-term rental courses, covering various aspects of the industry. From beginner courses that provide a comprehensive overview to advanced courses that focus on specific niches like automation, building a STR empire, hosting masterclasses, and hosting, you’ll find a course that suits your level of expertise and interests.
One of the advantages of Udemy is the flexibility it offers. Additionally, Udemy often provides lifetime access to the courses you purchase, allowing you to revisit the content whenever you need a refresher.
- Courses start at $14.99
- Popular course: “Mastering Airbnb” with Evan Kimbrell
The VRMB, or Vacation Rental Marketing Blog, is a worldwide community of vacation rental professionals. Founded by industry expert Matt Landau, the Vacation Rental Marketing Blog offers lots of free resources including a library of videos and podcasts, as well as a paid community membership. The focus is on finding creative solutions, building community, and identifying purpose in the STR world. Details:
- Free newsletter or paid membership offerings starting at $50
The BnB formula is a 3-6 month coaching program founded by entrepreneur Brian Page. Leverage automation to work part-time in the short-term rental business and discuss making money through Airbnb through rentals, not owned property.
The program includes a masterclass, a collection of tools and templates, and access to a private Facebook community of like-minded entrepreneurs.
- Courses start at $997 and go as high as $5700
Founded for Spanish-speaking managers, Alterschool has three areas of study: Emprendetur
Tech, Vacation Rental Growth, and Captación de Viviendas. Each class is broken into 15-minute sessions, making for manageable course study.
- Range of packages: Standard ($19/month), Advanced ($39/month), and Pro ($59/month).
Other STR course honorable mentions
There are many more short-term rental courses on the market worth mentioning. Here are a few:
- BnB Mastery Program™ (Founded by co-author of Airbnb for Dummies. James Svetec)
- Short-Term Sage (Founded by Julian Sage and Jon Bell)
- VR Mastered (Founded by Alanna Schroeder and Tyann Marcink)
- Million Dollar Renter (Founded by Sean Rakidzich)
Vacation rental business courses have the potential to revolutionize the way homeowners and short-term property managers operate. Whether you’re an AirbnbSuperhost or a first-time rental property manager, gaining a competitive edge, unlocking business growth opportunities, and acquiring valuable skills will undoubtedly strengthen your STR acumen.
And remember: do your homework to determine the STR rental courses best suited to your needs, goals, availability, and budget so you’re in a great spot once the actual homework rolls in. Then get ready to increase those bookings. Roll up your sleeves to optimize pricing strategies. And prepare yourself as the cash flow cometh.