With picturesque cottages, white picket fences and a playful personality, Seaside has long been known for its traditional small-town vibe, but a new rental management approach in the town is anything but traditional.
"It's been very positive," said Amy Wise-Coble, general manager of the Homeowner's Collection. "We are hearing that the homeowners' numbers are as good, if not better than they have ever been and guests are extremely happy — they like the feeling of being more directly connected to the owner."
The Homeowner's Collection is a rental management company that works hand-in-hand with the town's cottage owners to professionally and uniquely manage and market about 30 rental cottages, as well as the management of the Seaside Chapel.
After noticing a variety of management companies throughout the Seaside community, one homeowner, Max Watson, had an outside-of-the-box idea — Seaside owners that rent their cottages should own the company that represents them and "better connects them with their valued guests and the expectations they have for a quality Seaside experience."
More than a year of planning later, Wise-Coble told The Sun that the Homeowner's Collection was born. She said the focus of the Homeowner's Collection is to have a greater relationship between owners and guests, while still maintaining the Seaside brand that guests have come to love.
"I have to give so much credit and recognition to this first group of owners, and Max Watson, for their vision," she said. "These owners were willing to be pioneers and write a check because they believed in this concept."
Wise-Coble said this new way of doing business makes sense for homeowners because it allows them to have as much, or as little, control as they want over their rental properties.
"It's almost a great blend of the self-management concept with traditional professional management," she said.
Adding to the guest experience, the Homeowner's Collection features a "Coastal Concierge" service, which basically puts a guest-minded expert at visitors’ fingertips.
Two weeks prior to a guest’s arrival, they receive a phone call from the concierge service to discuss any special needs such as cribs or grocery deliveries. A week before arrival, an email is sent to guests with details of their stay, cottage access codes and other information.
Wise-Coble told The Sun that within 30-45 minutes of guests’ arrival, the concierge is there to greet them and answer any questions they may have. The concierge will serve as the central point of contact and is on-call for the duration of their stay.
"The idea was to take the traditional front desk model and take it out of the building and into the community," she said. "It's a very personalized service, and it's been very well received by the owners and guests."
For more information about the Homeowner's Collection or to make reservations call (855) 411-1557 or visit www.homeownerscollection.com.
After all of the planning and hard work, Wise-Coble said that the Homeowner's Collection has been a tremendous success so far, and the concept has an opportunity "to be industry changing."
"There is nothing more I would love to prove than that this is a viable business model that can make a big difference for homeowners and their investments," she said. "If there is anybody else doing something like this, we are unaware of it. This is one-of-a-kind."