Getting Results with Escapia
Founded in 2009, Truckee Reservations manages 40-50 rental homes and condos in Truckee, California, a popular year-round destination. Truckee Reservations used Escapia for 4 years, then decided to switch to an Idaho-based provider in 2013. After growing increasingly frustrated with inefficiences in the new software and the provider’s inability to deliver on promised features and support, Truckee switched back to Escapia in 2014. The results were instant, including a 75% decrease in time spent on back-end accounting. Escapia provides Truckee Reservations with the features, flexibility, and support they need to run an efficient, competitive business in the long term.
Read more in the following interview with Diane Blanford, owner of Truckee Reservations, to learn how Escapia improved her business:
Tell us more about your market and company.
Our rental homes are in Tahoe Donner, a development in Truckee with amenities for year-round guests. We specialize in ski-lease homes, which are special to the area and rented 4-5 months in the winter. They’ve become hugely successful for owners and popular with renters. Our focus is customer service and creating a quality vendor network.
What points of frustration caused you to look for new software?
When I bought the rental business in 2009, the previous company had Escapia in place. In 2013, I decided to switch to a competing web-based software provider; this ended up being the worst decision I made for my company. The software did not deliver on what was promised, plain and simple. I was promised a Quickbooks integration, which was not the case; this made my back-end accounting extremely time-consuming. Also, there was no process for sending my listings to other websites. In addition to these and other pain points, I felt I wasn’t receiving the technical support I needed. As my business grew, I decided to switch back to Escapia, and I realize now they are one of the best vacation rental software companies out there.
Now that you’re back on Escapia, what initial changes or results are you seeing?
I’m so glad to be back with Escapia! My month-end process is so much easier, less time-consuming, and there are fewer problems. The reservation system is much easier to use and so much more robust when it comes to dealing with out-of-the-ordinary situations. Since I don't manage just vacation rentals, but rather a variety of rentals, having flexibility in the software is critical. Escapia makes this a breeze with the way they allow a property manager to modify and add to reservations as the rental period progresses. It’s also so easy to add homes, owners, and customers into the databases. I have more options when it comes to placing my homes on other websites, since Escapia connects to sites like VRBO.
What big wins has Escapia brought for your business?
I think the big win for me is ease of processing the back end of my business, which will ultimately save me time and money. Escapia has already reduced my time spent on back-end processing by about 75%. Also, the support team is so knowledgeable and just amazing to work with. If you asked me to rate them I would give them a perfect 10.
What features do you love most about Escapia?
In no particular order:
- The quality of technical support
- Reservations grid
- How Escapia keeps track of reservation modifications
- Back-end accounting is easy to use and handles just about everything you can throw at it
- Allows me as a property manager to present a professional and accurate statement to my owners
- Service orders are easy to input and update, and it’s easy to bill owners for maintenance or cleaning.
- The billing system is easy to use and gives me the opportunity to pay vendors at any point in the month
- The system is easy to train others how to use
- The reporting
- The correspondence section
- The ease of adding homes, owners, and customers into the databases
Advice for Other Property Managers
Which key questions should others ask when selecting a vacation rental software provider?
- How well-trained is your staff?
- Will your software make my life easier? How?
- Can you walk me through the whole process from beginning to end so I can see and understand how the software works?
- What makes your software better than any other software? Prove it!
What is the single biggest reason you would encourage a colleague to use Escapia?
Because it does what they say it does! And it does it well!!