Screening Guests for Your Vacation Rental: Dos and Don'ts

Screening Guests for Your Vacation Rental: Dos and Don'ts

Just as you screen guests when renting out an apartment, home, or commercial building, the same thing applies when renting out vacation properties. Don't think you can be less vigilant in this case.

Screening guests for vacation rentals ensures the safety of your home and provides a positive experience for both hosts and guests.

Proper screening helps you identify trustworthy individuals while minimizing the risk of potential issues. In this article, we'll explore the dos and don'ts of screening guests for your vacation rental.


The first do is to take advantage of online rental platforms that offer verification services. Platforms like Airbnb and VRBO often provide tools for hosts to verify guests' identities through government-issued IDs, phone numbers, and online profiles.

Utilizing these features adds an extra layer of security and helps ensure that your guests are who they claim to be.

Establish Clear House Rules

Clearly outline the house rules in your rental listing and ensure that guests acknowledge and agree to them before booking. This includes policies on occupancy limits, noise restrictions, and any other specific guidelines you want guests to follow.

Having transparent rules sets expectations from the beginning and helps attract guests who are willing to comply.

Ask Open-Ended Questions

Engage with potential guests by asking open-ended questions during the booking process. Inquiring about the purpose of their trip, the number of individuals in their party, and any specific requirements they may have allows you to gather valuable information.

Pay attention to their communication style and responsiveness. This can provide insights into their level of responsibility as guests.

Read Guest Reviews and Ratings

Review the guest's history on rental platforms by checking their reviews and ratings from previous hosts. Past experiences with hosts can be indicative of how they are likely to behave in your property.

Look for patterns in feedback and any red flags raised by other hosts. Positive reviews from previous stays are generally a good sign.


Base your decisions on concrete information, such as verified identities, past reviews, and communication history. Relying on gut feelings alone can introduce biases and may not provide an accurate assessment of a guest's suitability.

Discriminate Against Guests Unfairly

Fair housing laws prohibit discrimination based on factors such as race, gender, religion, or disability. Be mindful of treating all guests equally and assessing them based on objective criteria related to their suitability as renters.

Overlook the Importance of Communication

While you're assessing potential guests, they are also evaluating you and your property. Respond promptly to inquiries, provide clear and helpful information, and address any concerns or questions they may have.

Screening Guests for Vacation Rentals - Don't Be Lackluster on This

Screening strategies vary from landlord to landlord. You might have a favorite way of screening guests for vacation rentals.

Whatever way you do it, make sure you never skip guest screening because you are in a rush to get guests into your unit.

PMI Zaboka can take over all this guest screening for you if you don't have the time or inclination for it. We offer full-service vacation rental management services in Royal Palm Beach, Florida. With nearly 20 years of experience, you know we have seen and done it all.

Schedule a free consultation with our team today.