Covid-19 is affecting short term rentals and your vacation plans, We are trying to help.
This post describes how our Ohana is handling issues related to Coronavirus and discusses sharing the burden
Maui Owner Condos has supported owners & renters for more than 20 years by providing unique properties offered by their owners who also use them. We put our feet in the door before accepting a property to insure you are dealing with the actual owner and that photos represent the property fairly and that the property is well maintained.
Unlike airBNB, booking.com and other companies that actually collect your money prior to passing some on to the owner, we simply advertise for the owner. We do not dictate owner policies. We do require that all policies are published in the listing for all renters to see.
The very things you like about the properties you find on our site - their uniqueness and home like feel, owner interaction to help you plan your trip - mean we are not a large corporate entities. We are individual homeowners, sharing our homes with you. Some are more dependent on this income than others.
When a guest enters into a contract to rent a vacation home, the guest is able to secure the home they want for their vacation, those dates are blocked, taking away the ability for anyone else to book that individual home. The guest is then able to cancel up to a certain point, even though there is significant less likelihood of rebooking the home rental if it is canceled. In turn, the guest takes on the risk that some bizarre, unknown personal, regional, or national event might occur that would keep them from being able to—or wanting to—go on their vacation. Many companies offer travel insurance to mitigate these risks.
We all encourage our renters to take out insurance to help protect them from the unexpected. Cancel for Any Reason policies purchased prior to January 25 when covid-19 became a known peril cover much of the loss for a traveler who is not actually sick. Travelers who decide not to purchase insurance do this deliberately and have been willing to take on the risk
This is a very scary time for all of us. We are all suffering from a completely unexpected occurrence and have no idea how it will end. It affects owners and renters alike. For those cancelling reservations prior to the balance being due this is not an issue. We all honor the contract (implied or signed) created when you booked a condo even though we know that now we will likely not be able to rebook and are actually losing all the planned income.
For those cancelling after this date an owner does not have to alter their policy, but times like this require everyone to strive for some flexibility. For the most part our owners have bent over backward and in some cases are risking their homes to help renters by extending their ALOHA!
Some owners are offering full credit for future bookings and allowing you to pick a date in the next year or more. The owner is giving you the opportunity to continue the trip you wanted and shouldering 100% of the burden. This option gives us a chance to plan ahead instead of refunding money already in hand and hopefully spread out our loss, giving us a better chance to survive and help our cleaners and others here on Maui related to our industry do the same.
Some offer full refunds, some are offering to "share the burden" by giving a 50% refund if a renter wants cash instead of a credit for a future booking and some are not altering their policy. This is a fluid situation so change is possible and likely in all cases.
By asking for a refund or credit you are asking our owners to take 100% of the responsibility - is that right? Shouldn't it be shared? We all face the same fears and issues - by sharing the burden we all have a chance to survive.
We'll get this figured out. The whole scenario is fluid but we are all in this together. We hope you as renters understand when requesting a full refund or credit you are asking us to take on the entire burden. Is that right? We all must consider the world we are building.
We hope you and yours stay well.