A rental deposit or security deposit is an amount of money in addition to the rental amount that is requested from the customer and can be refunded. By requesting a bond, you protect yourself against possible damages, which in turn guarantees the reimbursement of those damages and protects the volume of your business. In addition, this preventive measure has a strong psychological impact by ensuring that the client will take care of the property as if it were his own, providing peace of mind in the knowledge that any damage caused will be reimbursed.
From ABAL Consulting, a data-driven consultancy, we have compiled the most frequently asked questions related to rental finances, from how much the rent should be to which payment methods are most suitable:
What is the appropriate amount for the bond?
Although the law does not regulate the amount of the security deposit for short-term rentals, it is important to take into account certain parameters when defining the amount. First of all, it may be tempting to set a very high security deposit to cover possible damage to your property, but the truth is that setting too high an amount may discourage travelers and cause you to lose bookings. On the other hand, a very low security deposit will have little psychological impact on damage prevention and will not cover the financial impact on your business. To establish the appropriate amount, you can base it on the average amount of damage caused to your property and make an inventory of the furniture and equipment that could be damaged. From this inventory, it calculates the value in case of replacement and applies the loss rate to define the amount of the bond. If you do not have this information, it is advisable to request a certain percentage of the amount of the rent.
Which payment method is the most suitable?
When choosing a rental bond, it is also important to consider the payment methods available. With the wide range of options available, it is critical to select the one that best suits the needs of both the landlord and the tenant. Each payment method has its advantages and disadvantages, so it is crucial to make a decision taking into account all the information. Here, we will explore the most common options to help you select the right payment method for your situation:
Pre-authorized bank deposits
Pre-authorized bank deposits are a common way of guaranteeing payment for goods or services rented or purchased. Although they have numerous advantages, such as increasing transaction security and reducing the risk of non-payment, there are also potential disadvantages to consider. On the one hand, it can be annoying for customers, as they have to provide banking information and temporarily authorize the blocking of an amount of money in their account. On the other hand, it may generate additional costs for the companies that use this method, since they must pay a fee for each prior authorization performed. Although taking collateral through bank pre-authorization is an effective method of guaranteeing payment, the potential disadvantages for both customers and companies must be weighed.
Some rental companies use bank transfer as a method of payment, as it guarantees the owner compensation in case of damage and avoids non-payment. In addition, the psychological impact of this method is strong, as the renter must be careful with the rented property if he wishes to be reimbursed in full. However, making bank transfers involves some disadvantages, such as the time it takes to process them (24 to 72 hours during working days), which requires reservations in advance in order to be properly organized. It can also be complicated to request a transfer from customers, as it requires them to add a new beneficiary in their bank before the transfer can be initiated. All of this involves significant administrative work for the manager and can generate frustration for the client if the funds are not returned quickly. Although bank transfer is a free method and reassures landlords, it also has its limitations and can generate some complexity and stress in the management of the rental.
Although charging in cash is an option used by homeowners to insure themselves in case of problems, it has several drawbacks to consider. First, it obliges the traveler to withdraw money and may incur ATM withdrawal fees, especially if the customer is a foreign customer. Moreover, foreign travelers may find themselves with large amounts of cash at the end of their stay, forcing them to make a conversion to their national currency with associated fees. It should also be noted that not all banks allow large cash withdrawals, which can be a problem as security deposits are usually several hundred euros.
Another disadvantage is the lack of trust it may generate in the client, since he may feel that he is being forced to withdraw a sum of money in cash for the security deposit. There is a risk of loss or theft of cash, which can be a problem for the owner, who must transport these sums to safe places and return them before the departure of customers. Finally, in case of impairment observed after the departure of the customers, the cash is no longer useful to cover expenses.
To avoid all the limitations of traditional practices,Swikly invented the swik, a banking transaction that guarantees a rental or reservation by means of an online deposit. To create a swik, the customer enters their credit or debit card information into a secure form. The deposit can be guaranteed online for a certain period of time and the amount of the deposit is not blocked or debited, which does not affect the client’s bank account limit.
The process of insuring a reservation with a swik is quick and easy: the owner enters the amount to be insured, the client’s e-mail address and sends the request. The customer receives an email from Swikly and is invited to register their credit or debit card on their site. By accepting the swik request, the customer authorizes the charge of the amount and the term specified by the owner.
When the customer fulfills his commitment, the card number is automatically cancelled and the owner has nothing to do. In case of problems or cancellation by the client, the owner can request partial or full payment of the swik amount in a few clicks. Swikly thus offers a fast and secure solution for securing collateral deposits online without the constraints of traditional practices.
You can access the Webinar that we organized from ABAL Consulting with Swilky to learn more about this topic by clicking here.👇🏻
As discussed above, a rental deposit or security deposit is a common practice in the rental property market. This measure is an effective solution to prevent possible damages and guarantee the return of the property in the same condition as it was received. Despite its importance, it is crucial to establish the right amount so as not to discourage tenants and avoid financial losses for both parties.
The payment methods available for bail are diverse, and each has its pros and cons. Pre-authorized bank deposits are a convenient option, as they are made through a charge authorization on the tenant’s credit card. Bank transfer, on the other hand, is a safer option than cash, but may be less convenient for tenants. Charging in cash, while it may seem the simplest option, can also be inconvenient due to logistical and security difficulties.
It is the owner’s responsibility to carefully evaluate the available options and choose the one that best suits his needs and those of his clients. It is important to remember that the choice of bond payment method can have a significant impact on the tenant experience and the profitability of the business. In summary, the selection of the bond payment method should be a strategic decision made after a careful and detailed evaluation of the available options.