Advantages of Renting a Private Sint Maarten/ Saint Martin Villa
October 13, 2011

How to Rent a Sint Maarten/ Saint Martin Villa for Less than a Hotel Room

Have you’ve ever dreamed of owning a vacation villa in a faraway paradise, now’s the time to realize your dreams (temporarily at least) by renting a villa on Sint Maarten/ Saint Martin rather than staying in a hotel room.

The internet has thrown the doors wide open for finding wonderful villa rentals around the world, and more so on Sint Maarten/ Saint Martin.

Don’t be discouraged by the $10,000 per week listings you see in the major travel publications and villa websites. It’s easy to find and pay between $100 – $150 per night for amazing condos on the island. Here’s the secret of finding the perfect vacation rental on Sint Maarten/ Saint Martin.

There are two basic types of internet rental sites – by owner and by rental agency. If  you’re comfortable with Sint Maarten/ Saint Martin, and have knowledge of the destination, head straight for the “by owner” sites, else, it’s best to work with a rental agency.

There are several popular Vacation Rentals websites out there – The premier ‘by owner’ website with thousands of listings worldwide, and others with a convenient sort by price and number of bedrooms display, and some where you can also post your inquiry and compare offers. Sorting through the myriad of choices can be daunting, so you’ll want to get a big cup of coffee, a pad of paper and pencil, then settle down to preview lots of villa descriptions. Focus your search by asking yourself a few quantitative questions:

  • What part of Sint Maarten/ Saint Martin do you want to be in? – Pull out the tourist maps and give it some thought.
  • How many bedrooms do you need? – When financially possible, most persons usually go for a 2 bedroom even though they only need one. These units tend to have much larger overall living areas.
  • Do you want to be in a high rise or low rise building, a stand alone home, or perhaps a gated community? If you want a resort feel for your vacation, head for the larger complexes. If you want to feel like you own a piece of paradise, go for the stand alone homes.
  • Set your target budget. You’ll find listings with per night, per week and per month quotes.
  • On your first pass look only at listings displaying an availability calendar – this will save lots of time sending off email’s to places already rented. As you go through the listings ask yourself: Can I picture myself living here? Is it my taste? Has the unit been recently updated? Does the owner use the unit themselves? – We’ve found units owned exclusively for rental may not be as well kept as units used by owners. Look for lots of pictures – carefully consider what’s being shown and what’s not. If there are no pictures of a bathroom or kitchen, be wary. Look carefully at pictures that show a mirrored wall – be sure you really have a good idea of how large the room is and you’re not being fooled by an illusion. Look for reviews from past renters.

Once you’ve narrowed down the choices, give extra attention to: Are utilities included? – usually they are. Is there air conditioning or heat? How about a telephone? Is there a cleaning fee? Whatever the amenity, if they don’t say they’re included, they’re usually not.

Congratulations, the villa you desire is available, but…the questions aren’t quite over yet – here are some to get clarified before you send off a deposit. Is there a security deposit? How is the return of a security deposit handled – who does the inspection and when? TIP – take a series of digital photos of the interior before departing so there won’t be any issues. Is there someone to call locally if there is a problem with the rental? What is the cancellation policy? Will you be able to pay by credit card? Make sure a Rental Agreement is provided before you send any money, read it carefully and resolve any questions or issues.

With a bit of advance research and planning you’ll have a wonderful Sint Maarten/ Saint Martin villa vacation. And the best bonus we’ve had in renting villas is the number of terrific friends we’ve made by staying in homes rather than hotel rooms.

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