We got together with Andrew McConnell, cofounder of VacationFutures, to talk about how he’s making vacation rentals easier to offer. VacationFutures plays from both sides of the vacation rental equation. They offer vacation homeowners a risk-free, easy way to make money from their properties by linking them with investors and property managers who receive access to the market and a simple way to diversify and expand holdings. With both founders hailing from Harvard (heard of it?), VacationFutures makes the process easy by charging homeowners no fee for joining the site and ensuring all the investors and property managers are legitimate.
Hey Andrew! You’re lookin’ killer disrupting the rental market with that yellow rocket!
VacationFutures is the wholesale rental marketplace.
We seek to make all parties involved in the vacation rental process better off. Namely, we allow vacation homeowners to generate risk-free, upfront income from their vacation homes, with a tiny fraction of the time commitment currently required by other options. At the same time, we allow potential investors and property managers to gain access to these vacation properties in a way that limits their upfront capital commitments and risk exposure, but maximizes their income. By doing this, we put the management of the properties into the hands of professionals, making the booking process efficient and easier for the eventual renter.
Majority owned by the two Co-Founders: Andrew McConnell and Mickey Kropf.
We (the Co-Founders) are both from Atlanta, love the city, and love the South. There is a ton of talent here, and the quality of life far exceeds what is possible in places like San Francisco and New York.
Three full-time: Andrew McConnell (Co-Founder and CEO); Mickey Kropf (Co-Founder and Director of Sales); Pierre Lebrun (Lead Software Developer)
As a Georgia LLC in April 2012. Reincorporated as a Delaware C-Corp. in March of 2013.
Funded or bootstrapped:
Closed our Series Seed round of funding in September of 2013.
Price of Services:
Completely free for homeowners at all stages.
$2,000 daily subscription fee for property managers on the days they do deals (any days they do not do deals, i.e., just search, bid on, and conduct due diligence on properties, are free). In the medium to long term we plan to transition to transaction based fees that are tied to the value of the transaction.
What Customers Get:
Vacation homeowners get a market-derived price for all of their available rental weeks in a single transaction. This allows them to obtain guaranteed income without the time and hassle required by their alternatives today.
Vacation rental managers get a one-stop-shop to acquire new inventory. Instead of wasting their time trying to find and convince homeowners to work with them, they can quickly and easily find new properties to manage through VacationFutures’ marketplace. Plus, on the inventory they obtain through VacationFutures they keep 100% of revenues (rather than just collecting a commission as they do today), and they have full control over how they manage the weeks they buy.
[Photo Credit: Whitlock/Hypepotamus]