Ski Vacation Tips: Go Green to Prevent Them From Melting

Planning on a ski vacation this year? Why not consider skiing green this time. With Earth getting hotter than usual due to global warming, ski resorts are mostly affected by this change. At present, they are now thinking of ways on how they can help to mitigate the problem.

The good news is, you too can do something to help reduce this problem. There are various ways that you can do to make it happen. You may think that your individual efforts aren’t enough to make a difference, but they do! So, here are some eco-friendly tips that you can do to help preserve our environment.

Ride smart for a greener trip

Instead of flying to other places for your ski trip, travel to ski resorts closer to your home. The good thing about this is you can pack other things like a cooler and enjoy your own food, drinks and snacks.

Also, if your friends and coworkers share the same interest as you do, you can carpool with them. But if you insist on flying to other destinations, you can also ask if the resort offers a shuttle service to and from the airport. This will allow you to save on gas instead of renting a car.

Choose greener ski resorts

Resorts are more aware now of the impacts of climate change and are now inclined towards pursuing a greener environment. In order to make greener choices, you may ask questions before you make a reservation. You can ask them questions such as:

What do they recycle?

Do they have a water conservation program?

Are their cleaning products eco-friendly?

Do their machines that help clear trails use bio-fuel?

Do they use wind power for energy needs?

Do they offer a shuttle service to and from the airport?

This will help them realize that their efforts in being an eco-friendly resort, really do matters. Also, compliment them on their efforts and encourage them to continue to maintain an eco-friendly facility.

Cross-country skiing? Why not!

You may also consider cross-country skiing this year. This can be done in many “local” places depending on the snowfall in your area. The good thing is, cross-country skiing burns more calories than resources, compared to downhill skiing.

Respect the environment

Every time tourists flock to ski resorts, it’s the environment that suffers due to the irresponsibility of the people. So be responsible with your trash every time you visit any ski resorts. Don’t throw your garbage everywhere. Use biodegradable products and reduce the use of plastic bags. Follow proper segregation and as much as possible, recycle.

With these simple tips, you will not only enjoy your ski vacation, you’ll also be able to help the planet from further devastation. So think green, go green, and support a greener ski vacation. Let’s continue to take care of this planet we call home.

What to Look for When Buying Sofas for Vacation Rentals

Vacation rental furniture must be durable in order to stand up to regular use by a wide variety of vacationers who may not care for your furnishings quite as well as you would like them to. Holiday rentals, by their nature, are occupied by a constantly transitioning parade of temporary residents who use them as a home base for family vacations, ski trips, weekends at the lake or corporate retreats in the mountains. While some renters are mindful of the furnishings and treat their temporary housing as if it was their home, many do not. Anyone who owns temporary rentals has either heard stories of raucous parties and trashed houses, or they have experienced these things themselves.

Knowing that your furniture will very likely be mistreated by at least some of the folks who call your rental property home for a weekend, a week or a month, it is imperative that you invest in furnishings that you will not have to replace every time a rowdy group of friends parties a bit too hard or a pair of permissive parents lets their children run loose with chocolate ice cream, crayons and fruit punch. This is particularly true when purchasing a sofa, since you know this piece of furniture will definitely be used on a daily basis and will take the brunt of any mishaps that may occur.

What to Look for When Vacation Rental Sofa Shopping

When shopping for vacation rental sofas, there are three main factors to keep in mind: They should be durable, washable and renewable. Other features that might not be deal breakers, but are certainly nice to have, include storage space and the ability to be separated and moved around to create a variety of seating arrangements.

Seeking out high-quality, durable sofas is a given when shopping for rental furnishings. Poorly made furniture will not last and is not worth the money, even if the sofa was incredibly cheap. If you have to replace your rental’s sofa every few months, or even every few years, you are not getting the value you need out of the piece. Therefore, shopping for sofas with sturdy construction from a reputable manufacturer is essential.

It is also important to keep in mind that even the most well-constructed sofa can still be damaged from spills, cuts, ill-mannered pets and rowdy guests. This is where choosing a washable fabric sofa from a company that offers replacement fabric, cushions and pieces comes into play. Washable sofa fabrics are a must-have and allow you to easily launder all of the sofa fabric at the end of the vacation season or when a guest soils the fabric during their stay. This alone can save you hundreds – or even thousands of dollars – while making it easy to keep your rental attractive and appealing to new guests.

Of course, you may have more than a spill to contend with if your renters managed to cut the sofa fabric, allowed their dog to chew up a sofa cushion or somehow managed to break one of the wood pieces on the arm or back of the sofa. If you purchased a sofa from a company that does not offer replacement pieces or fabrics, than this would mean costly repairs or needing to replace the sofa completely. But if you purchased the sofa from a company that allows you to easily order a single replacement cushion, new fabric pieces or new wood pieces, than you can inexpensively and conveniently have your sofa looking as good as new. This kind of renewability is an important part of getting the best value when furnishing rental properties.

Other Things to Consider When Shopping for Sofas

In addition to these must-have qualities, the sofas you choose for your rental properties can also serve additional functions, if the right sofa is chosen. For example, choosing a storage sofa that offers storage space under each cushion is a great way to make room for extra bedding, pillows and towels without having to purchase a cabinet or cluttering up shelves with these necessities.

If your rental caters to larger groups, you might want to also consider purchasing a sectional sofa that has multiple pieces that can be grouped together or separated to provide a variety of seating options. This will appeal to guests with varying needs, such as companies holding retreats, and is a great way to fit abundant seating into a small space.

Tips For Buying Timeshares & Renting Timeshares

Timeshare: Making the Decision to Buy

A vacation home without the long-distance hassle: a timeshare might be the perfect solution.

You’ve found it: the place you’d like to return to again and again for your vacation. Having a home base rather than trying to find hotel accommodations makes sense to you, but the thought of buying a house and trying to maintain from a distance while only using it a few weeks each year seems daunting and expensive. Looking at timeshares for sale may be your best solution. You have the option of buying new, or the option of buying timeshares for sale by owner.

When you buy a unit, usually a condo, you agree to share it with others but have the option of using it for your own vacations. Often a maintenance or management company will assess an annual fee, and in return they’ll make sure the building is maintained and protected.

How the timeshare arrangement is set up varies by timeshare company. It’s a good idea to look at both new properties and timeshares for sale by owner. But some key factors to consider include:

* Decide if the area you’ve picked is one you’ll be happy to vacation at for years to come.

* Inspect the timeshare for sale. If possible, have a professional home inspector take a look as well.

* Check the timeshare company’s record with the state’s Better Business Bureau or State Attorney General’s Office to see if there are outstanding complaints regarding maintenance and association agreements.

* When possible, talk to other timeshare owners in the complex. Find out what they think of the area and the timeshare.

* Don’t let someone pressure you to make a decision on the spot. Always take time to think it over.

* Consider what’s more important-having a brand-new unit that will cost anywhere from 30-60% more, or being able to buy a previously-owned timeshare that will be less expensive.

Timeshares for Sale: Where do I Find Them?

You’ve decided to buy-now how do you find just the right one?

The world of timeshares for sale can be confusing. And unfortunately, scams do happen in this market, so it’s worth your while to take your time and be sure of your choice.

In terms of price, timeshares for sale by owner will save you money. Buying direct reduces the costs associated with middlemen, saving you money and costing the seller less, so both sides win.

First, of course, you need to know where you want to be. Beaches? Lakes? Mountains? Private getaways? Once you have zeroed in on the place that sounds like heaven for upcoming vacations, figure out what you need. Nonsmoking? Number of bedrooms? Now it’s time to look at the time shares for sale available.

Once you’ve found something that sounds like it fits your needs, you can contact the owner directly. Make arrangements to visit the timeshare and the neighborhood, so you can see firsthand if it’s what you want. Consider the availability of things like grocery stores and doctors, if you are planning to use the timeshare a few times a year. Find out about the year-round climate, if you’d like to use it for more than one season.

If the time share meets your checklist, you’re on the road to peaceful, worry-free vacations for years to come!

Timeshare Resales: Know Your Market

Interested in selling a timeshare? Understanding the market is key.

You’ve got a timeshare, and now you’d like to sell it. How do you go about selling timeshares?

* While we’ve been trained to think of buildings and condos as real estate, what you’re really selling is a vacation. Play up the aspects of your location: beach, mountains, skiing, solitude, family-friendly-that’s what gets people’s attention.

* Price is key. Do your homework-check with the building management company or local tax offices to find out what kind of prices timeshares have sold for recently.

* When checking resale, make sure you look for comparable prices-look for units similar in size, location, and age as the one you want to sell.

* If available, consider hiring a timeshare appraiser. Find one that’s licensed in the same state as the timeshare is located. They may have access to recent sales information that you can’t easily get.

* Check with the timeshare management company to learn what regulations they may have regarding resale.

* You can advertise locally through newspapers, or you can use the power of the World Wide Web as an excellent and cost-effective way to reach a huge potential pool of buyers.

* Be careful if approached by a timeshare broker-some are legitimate, some are not. Some may offer services that are identical to what you can do yourself via the internet.

* Above all, make sure your timeshare is in top condition, clean and repair-free.

Timeshare Rentals – The How To’s

Have a timeshare available, or want to borrow one for a bit? Here’s what to know.

There’s a misconception that says timeshares are strictly for-sale properties. That’s not the case. Potential timeshare buyers have the option of renting a timeshare from an owner who isn’t using the timeshare, but doesn’t want to sell it. Or someone thinks they may eventually be interested in timeshare sales, but they’re not ready for the full commitment just yet. Timeshare rentals by owner allow both owners and renters to have flexibility. It’s a win-win for both sides.

A few things to keep in mind when renting a timeshare, whether you’re the landlord or the renter:

* Even though the timeshare is not changing ownership, the rental should be done in writing with specifics about what is expected for both sides. Payment, damage deposits, check-in and check-out times, rules regarding pets, smoking, or children, should be spelled out and signed by both parties.

* Timeshare owners should consult the property managers of the timeshare to see what the rules regarding rental are, and share those regulations with the renter.

* Timeshare renters should treat the timeshare as what it is: property that belongs to someone else. Follow the rules, keep everything clean, and notify the owner if you notice anything amiss (plumbing problems, appliances not working properly, etc.).

* Renters should make their payments on time, and timeshare owners should refund damage deposits promptly.

* For both sides, be respectful of neighboring timeshares. If you know the timeshare owner next door is sensitive to loud noise, consider putting a “quiet time” clause in the rental contract-and if you’re the renter, comply with those clauses.

* If the rental goes well, the renter should provide a reference for the owner, if the owner plans to rent the property again.

It’s all about respect-and a fun use for a vacation rental!

Top 10 Tips For Maintaining Your Static Caravan

A static caravan is a great investment in your families future holidays. You can enjoy amazing times in your new holiday home but you should look at after your static caravan to ensure it stays in tip top condition year on year.

I thought I would give you some hints and tips on maintaining your caravan and I will write some more detailed advice in other articles, but this one covers the main areas.

1) Gas and Electric Maintenance

Your holiday home will most likely be fitted with a gas boiler which in some cases will be connected to a central heating system.

Annual maintenance of your boiler should be completed by a competent and registered engineer, however you can ensure that it’s running smoothly and highlight any concerns to your engineer as soon as possible. This will keep your overall costs down in future years.

As for electric systems I would recommend getting these annually checked for safety. Again, you can check if the fuses are in place correctly and that when you leave your static caravan that both the electric and bass is turned off at the main connection points to your plot.

2) Exterior Maintenance

Dirt will collect on your caravan throughout the year. Cleaning the exterior of your caravan will keep it looking great and will also ensure it stays waterproof.

You can use a jet wash or a cloth and detergent to clean the outside of your caravan. Windows can be cleaned with a normal window cleaning solution.

Ask your park manager if they offer a cleaning service or know someone who does if you feel this is a too greater task for you.

3) Guttering

One area to check on a regular basis are your gutters.

Remove any leaves and debris to ensure that water can pass easily away. This is a common cause of damp in caravans so by performing this quick and simple maintenance task your static caravan will perform as expected for many years.

4) Anchor your static caravan

You might think that your caravan weighs quite a bit, but high winds in the autumn and winter can cause them to flip over.

I would recommend that you anchor caravan and check this on a regular basis. Anchor chains will be available from all good caravan accessory retailers or ask your park manager if they can recommend a solution.

Some caravan parks will check and maintain this for you, however I would ask the question rather than just think its happening!

5) Window Latches and Doors

A new caravan can be installed with double glazing and uPVC doors. However I would advise that all windows and doors close and lock securely.

A static caravan can warp as it gets older, so checking that the seals are tight and all security features are in good working is a quick precaution that can save you money in the long term.

6) Check for rust

The chassis of your caravan will be constructed from a hardy metal however you should check for rust on other areas as your caravan gets older. This would especially be the case on any fittings attached to the caravan.

7) Wheels

It’s rare to have to move your static caravan however an annual inspection of your wheels will ensure that if it is required to be moved it will easily without issues such as getting cranes in.

8) Electric Fridge and Freezer

Your fridge and freezer will get some serious use each year. When you leave your caravan for a prolong period of the time and your fridge is not required I would advise that you allow the freezer section be correctly defrosted.

This will reduce any issues of water leakage and also reduce down any damp that could be created when not in use.

9) Internal Cleaning

I would recommend that you clean your caravan on a regular basis. As you perform the cleaning you will be able to notice any signs of wear and tear that could effect the life of your static caravan.

If you are unable to perform a deep clean your park manager will be able to advise of local cleaning companies that specialise in static caravan cleaning. They will report any problems they notice to you so you can react quickly and repair any problems before they get worse.

10) Static Caravan Insurance

Please, please, please ensure you have adequate static caravan insurance.

This is one area where many owners fail to get the correct level of cover. If its too cheap, then it probably won’t meet your requirements. Check your policy wording carefully and ensure that you are correctly covered for accidents or other insurance related claims.