Resort Management System Blog



Resort Management System Blog RMS Spring Newsletter 2017

Your Resort Management System
Log In and take charge! 
Greetings!
The Resort Management System provides property managers both large and small with a versatile Reservation Booking system, Advanced Accounting, Maintenance Work Orders and a full Reports menu.  RMS recently updated AdvancedCare members who list on HomeAway and VRBO.  Integrating your properties is just one of many options to assist property managers in today's rapidly changing world of technology.

In this Newsletter find out more about what's new in RMS!

Updates for HomeAway Integration


All RMS clients who are integrated with HomeAway and VRBO received an update to improve the RMS feed to the listing sites.  While this update was intensely technical from a programming aspect, it had some visible improvements for minimum nights stay and check-in and check-out days in RMS and on the listing sites.
 
Season Supplements
One of the changes involved the RMS Season Supplement File.  All properties are now required to use a Season Supplement file with the minimum night stay entered for each set of dates in the Season file.  The Season Supplement associated with a unit must use the same Season file as the Unit Rate.  Check-in days are also required for each set of dates and check-out days are optional. If the check-out days are left blank, RMS will send all check-out days as Y meaning Yes check out is available any day.  Even if you only have a minimum requirement of 1 day you must have a Season Supplement file for units integrating with HomeAway.   
 
Required Fields
Fields in the Unit details screen should all be filled in the RMS Unit File including latitude, longitude and the extended address fields.  The Rates tab in the Unit file should show rates for all three years. In Web Options of the Unit File the web comments fields 1-5 will feed directly to your listing site and your website as the property description. For HomeAway the minimum number of characters required for a property description is 400.

In the AUD you are required to choose a Property Type.  You must enter the Accommodation Summary (number of bedrooms, bathrooms and maximum in party.  A headline of at least 20 characters must be entered with 70 characters recommended. The bedrooms and bathroom amenities are also required.  When entering full bathrooms the amenities must include a toilet and a bath or shower selection from the list available in the AUD. Other amenities found in the AUD under Listing features and Property features are not required but are available for you to choose to create a beautiful and outstanding listing.

Booking Source 
Booking through HomeAway and VRBO does require credit card integration through RMS.  When the booking is made online via the listing site the Booking Source field is filled with the source HOMEAWAY. Even if the booking is made through VRBO the booking source field will still say HOMEAWAY. 

To view the Booking Source in RMS, go to View Reservation. Once you have retrieved the reservation go to Reservation Maintenance and choose the first menu option, Change Reservation Information.  The Booking Source is automatically fulfilled when a booking comes in from a listing site.  However, if you want to enter in the Booking Source manually because you ended up booking the reservation rather than sending the guest back to the listing site (which HomeAway recommends) you can enter HOMEAWAY in the booking source field.  The Booking Source report is pulled by HomeAway to assist them in calculating the booking conversion rates that they constantly monitor and try to improve for their clients.

HomeAway has very specific rules regarding their online bookings and content posted on their listing sites.  Please visit HomeAway.com with any questions about their policies and rules.

For any questions regarding RMS data fields or integrating your properties visit resortpilot.com or give us a call: 843-795-4110 

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Resort Management System Blog Holiday Newsletter

decorated_wreath.jpg In RMS, Rate and Seasons files may apply to units, equipment, recurring fees and charges including travel insurance. Be very careful when editing Season records that are shared.

Typically a standard Season is set up for most or all Unit Rates.  If all your Unit Rates are using the same season then you only have to edit one Season File to impact all units. Dates are changed in the Seasons File.  Rental Rates are changed in the Unit Rates File.  You can find both these icons easily from the Files Navigation menu

red-ornament-sm.jpg Season Supplements in RMS allow you to set up controls for minimum nights stays per season as well as check-in and check-out days.The Season Supplement icon is available on the Files menu.

Each season supplement MUST use the same season as the unit that will use it.  Be sure to assign each season a minimum night stay and check-in and check-out day.  You must enter values for each season even if you allow a 1 night stay and check-in on any day. Once the Season Supplement is created assign it in the Unit File.

YEAR END REMINDERS

  • Print, Review and Finalize your December 2016 Owner Statements
  • Print your Tax Report
  • Print 1099s for Owners and Vendors
  • Print Year End Totals and any other Reports for Owners
  • Add a year to the Booking Calendar as needed
  • Check your Seasons and Rates for next year and edit as needed!

Have a Healthy and Prosperous New Year from RMS!

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03 January 2017, 19:07
 

Resort Management System Blog Sneak Peak at what's coming in the next Update

Resortpilot.com news! The latest update from RMS includes a change to your Season Supplement Screen.  The Season Supplement is not required to be turned on but many Property Managers use it to control the  number of minimum nights that may be booked in one of your properties as well as what day the guest may check-in.  Now you may control the check-out day for the reservations booked in a unit with ease.  To learn more check out this Season Supplement Tutorial with a Sneak Peak at the new setting in the Season Supplement File.

Season Supplement Tutorial

(Must login to support to view)

 

Resort Management System Blog Fall Newsletter 2016

Resort Management System
2016 Fall Newsletter 
Dear Barbara,
The Resort Management System provides property managers both large and small with a versatile Reservation Booking system, Advanced Accounting, Maintenance Work Orders and a full Reports menu. This quarterly newsletter provides you with RMS news and tips on using your RMS.
Hurricane Matthew Update
Many of you contacted us to make sure all was well in Charleston and we appreciate your support and patience!  No damage was done and hosted data is always safe and secure in the cloud with redundant backups daily.

We attempted to reach out to all our clients who may have been impacted by Hurricane Matthew and we are always available to support and assist with getting your RMS caught up with any changes you were forced to make because of the storm.

RMS does have a way for you to email all your owners a quick owner memo.  If you missed it in the previous newsletter you can check it out here: Owner Memo

HomeAway, VRBO, GTHY, FlipKey Integration


If you are integrated with ANY listing site it is REQUIRED that you notify your listing contact about any newproperties you would like to list. You will give them the new property UNIT ID.  This is a field in the Unit File and is labelled Unit ID.

DO NOT CHANGE your UNIT ID without notifying your listing site representative or your feed to that unit's listing will break.  That means your calendars will no longer update and any changes you make in RMS will not get updated to the site.

HomeAway and VRBO listings only- If you change anything in your AUD such as HEADLINE or any of the AMENITIES you must update the Unit in AUD and you must go to that unit's file in RMS and click OK to update the LAST CHANGE DATE.  The Unit Detail page in your RMS should display the same date as the date of your last AUD update.

Our Programming department in collaboration with HomeAway has been working to UPDATE the integration process.  This update will be applied automatically and will improve some issues regarding minimum stays and check-in days that the listing site was having with RMS feeds.

There will be more from programming in the next newsletter.  Until then, happy booking!

 
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03 November 2016, 13:19
 

Resort Management System Blog Owner Memos

Get a Message to your Owners

 

The Resort Management System has an option for you to email all of your Owners a quick memo.  Imagine how this can be used for you to communicate effectively to owners about impending storms, changes in policy, contract renewal or upcoming maintenance opportunities!
When you need to communicate with your Owners use the Owner Memo and quickly email or print out your custom designed letter from RMS.  Owners and their assests are IMPORTANT and communication with them is key, 

Here is how you do it:

  1. Go to Utilities>User Designed Letters>Owner Memo.
  2. Write your letter.
  3. You may also upload an htm or html letter and upload to Custom Letters using RMS Files.
  4. Go to Reports>Owner>Owner Custom Letter/Labels.
  5. For Owner units to print choose "Units".  This will send a letter to Owners who are assigned to units and will leave off old owners you may still have on file.
  6. Which to print?  Choose "Custom Letter".
  7. Letter Output? Choose your preference, typically email.
  8. Letter to Print? Owner Memo
  9. Letter per Unit? Choose "Yes" if you want to send two letters to an owner that has two units.  If you choose "No" then an owner with more than one property in your system will get only one letter.

Please let us know if you need further assistance with this option in RMS.  It's a great way to get the word out quick to your owners about items that may need fast action such as storm preparations, or even annual reminders. 

For help with custom letters or uploading a letter please give us a call 1-843-795-4110 or submit a ticket at ResortPilot.com.

 

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03 November 2016, 13:17
 

Resort Management System Blog RMS Summer Newsletter 2016

The RMS Newsletter is emailed quarterly to all our AdvancedCare members to provide RMS news, support and contact information.

We know you are super busy which is why we also publish the newsletters on our support site resortpilot.com as well as on our

website under archived newsletters.


RMS letters help you communicate with your guests and owners. Each letter has a specific role and you can design or write a letter with your specific goal in mind.  What are you communicating in your letters?  RMS letters use powerful merge tag technology allowing you to populate letters with data from your RMS. Reservation information or unit details are included in your letters with the right merge tags. 

Probably one mutual goal both you and the guest have is to have your EXPECTATIONS met. One important letter that can assist you in fulfilling this goal is the Guest License Agreement. It is a list of your rules and policies that the guest agrees to abide by during his stay.   The list may include every policy from check-in and check-out time to rules of respect for the property even cancellation or early departure policies.  Some property managers include additional HOA rules often in a separate agreement or special instructions for pool usage or golf cart usage.

Online pictures of a property should match what the guest sees when they arrive for example. It is important to state clearly and honestly what amenities are available for the guest from the start as well as what the rules are for the guest.  This information should be clear and honest on the website and wherever your property is advertised.

Advertising honestly is important as well as communicating clearly in your letters and meeting expectations.  What about exceeding expectations?  You probably have a lot to offer and more than they realize! You have probably heard the phrase, "under promise and over deliver"?  It can work in your vacation rental business too! One thing you might consider is communicating a detail or benefit exclusively in the Final Instructions Letter or the Pre-arrival letter.  It might be an added value previously undisclosed such as "Tennis court fees are included with your rental!" or a promo code for a discount at a nearby restaurant or attraction you have partnered with.  Exceeding the guests expectations can lead to good reviews, returning guests, happy owners and happy you!



RMS integrates with Kaba Locks, Resort Locks and PointCentral. Lock integration allows you to generate key codes from RMS for your reservations. The keycodes are given to your guest prior to arrival or according to your policy. RMS can also generate unit key codes for property managers to give to vendors. The key code may be disclosed to the guest ( using a merge tag) in the Final Instructions letter. New key codes may be created if a key is lost and key code history is stored in RMS for the property managers benefit.

The first step in lock integration is to contact the lock company you are using and tell them you use RMS software and would like to integrate your account. Some Lock companies have automatic environmental controls available for your properties as well as lock management features.
Our lock company will give you a list of Lock ID codes to enter in the RMS Unit File.

Your lock company contacts RMS and we will install the necessary components for the integration.

Your installation will also activate the Utilities:
"Generate New Key Codes" and "View Key Code H
istory".
Lock integration is an efficient way to generate new keycodes automatically.
Communicating the new keys to the guest using the Final Instructions letter allows  you to have all your information centralized in RMS



If you would like to take advantage of Lock Integration or any of our additional modules, please give us a call 1-843-795-4110 or submit a ticket at ResortPilot.com so we can help you get started today!

Resort Management System is a product of AMS, Inc.
PO Box 14320, Charleston, SC 29422 USA
www.ResortManagementSystem.com



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16 August 2016, 16:03
 

Resort Management System Blog RMS Spring Newsletter 2016

Your Resort Management System
Saying YES to RMS
Dear Barbara,
The Resort Management System provides property managers both large and small with a versatile Reservation Booking system, Advanced Accounting, Maintenance Work Orders and a full Reports menu.  Are you using your RMS to its full potential? Are you able to rapidly enter and retrieve reservations and post payments? Are you using RMS to correspond effectively with guests and owners? If you said "Yes" to all of these than go back to drinking your latte!  If you said "No"  read on for some tips and tricks.
Are you Using RMS to its Full Potential?

One way you can increase your efficiency and optimize your RMS is by using the Online Modules that RMS has to offer. Check out these top 3:

Owner2  With the Owners Login module, owners can log in using a secure password and view their statements, book their own reservations and even check year to date totals on gross rent and nights booked.

Online Booking

Allowing your website to be integrated with RMS gives your guests the ability to view your properties and calendars on their own time.  Guests can search for availability according to their preferences and arrival and departure dates.  Guests can make their deposits and receive correspondence immediately.

The Guest Payment Portal allows guests to login with their reservation number and last name and make a payment or complete payment for their reservation. 
lady-keyboard-hands.jpg

Enter reservations quickly using the TapeChart, the Unit Calendar or using Reservation by Search.  Pick the method that you are most comfortable with and that suits the guest.  If a guest doesn't know where they want to stay and only has dates use the Reservation by Search method or use the filters on the Tape Chart to narrow down their choices. 

If the Owner or a friend of owner or previous guest knows the property they want to book, use the Unit Calendar.

 
Having accurate rates will  allow RMS to calculate costs and automatically save you time.

Integrated credit card payments allows you to process the deposit when the reservation is booked!  See our list of CC Partners if you need more information. 


RMS gives you the ability to customize your letters and send them automatically at the time of booking with auto correspondence or immediately after the booking from Reservation View.  You can also send letters at the end of the day for all reservations booked that day.

Design multiple form letters to send when needed to guests or owners. Send property specific confirmations or guest license agreements and unique letters with links to information relevant to certain properties.

See who hasn't paid or sent in their Guest Agreement with the Unconfirmed Reservation Summary Report and send them a reminder letter. 

Include a link for directions or a keycode in the Final Instructions letter. 

Send a request for review or feedback in the After Reservations Letter.  You can even insert a link to your listing site or a survey form.  

 
Programming has been hard at work completing a new integration with PointCentral Locks.  Lock integration is available with Kaba, ResortLock and PointCentral.

Other items in development are DocuSign integration which will be a powerful time saving tool!  Also improvements with HomeAway and VRBO listing integration are on the programming docket.  


Resort Management System is a product of AMS, Inc.
PO Box 14320, Charleston, SC 29422 USA
www.ResortManagementSystem.com  


ResortPilot.com
Are you registered for ResortPilot.com? The RMS Support website has more information on these modules, Integration Partners and Web Services in addition to a Knowledgebase of articles and tutorials.

RMS
CC Partners



TYSYS

VRP small logo

Other
Partners

FlipKey



RMS
Lock  Partners


resortlock


Reservations, Advanced Accounting, Online Booking, Maintenance Work Orders, Reservation Login, Owner Login, Owner Direct Deposit, Cleaning Vendor Login, Housekeeping, Clean Text, Credit Card Integration, HomeAway and VRBO Integration, Glad Professional,  FlipKey, Travel Insurance, Kaba Locks
AMS, Inc., P.O. Box 14320, Charleston, SC 29422-4320


 

 

 

 

 

 

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10 May 2016, 14:01
 

Resort Management System Blog Happy New Year From RMS

The season is so busy but you can rest easy knowing your Resort Management System keeps your data safe and secure with access from anywhere and backups performed nightly.

For those of you with RMSLive and online booking your RMS is working for you 24/7.  Guests can book online and pay their remaining balance  with the Guest Payment Portal. Owners can book their own reservations and view Owner Statements with the Owners Portal.

January is the time to start thinking about your Owner and Vendor 1099's.  Find out more in this RMS Newsletter.

Getting RMS Ready for 2016!

 

What do you need to do to get ready for 2016? 
1 .First of all, you will want to close out 2015!  Print and review your owner statements and then Finalize them!

2. Print your Tax Report.

3. If you use Advanced Accounting you may want to print the Trial Balance for the month, Post Transactions and Close the Accounting Period.  These are monthly procedures, so if you haven't been doing them please give us a call before you get started.

4. Print your Unit Totals reports for you and your owner. Reports>Owner Reports>1099s and Unit Totals.

5. Print your 1099s for Owners and Vendors.  You can order forms or pick up 1099 forms at an office supply store such as Staples.

6. Check what years you are tracking and give us a call if you need to upgrade your Unit calendars and track a new year.

7. Check your Season File and make sure your start and end dates for each season are correct.

8.  Change Rates as needed in the Unit Rates File.

9. What's that Monkey got to do with anything? 2016 is the year of the Monkey according to the Chinese calendar which actually doesn't start until February 8th. And don't forget, February has 29 days this year!

Reviewing Your Web Presence and Correspondence


RMS has some options for you to consider as you plan your marketing strategy for 2016.  How is your website doing? Do you list your properties on other sites?  How is your followup correspondence?
 
RMS has many integration options such as online booking or just allow guest to look at current availability and not book. The guest payment portal allows your guests to complete payments online. Your guests can use our powerful search capabilities on your own website to find the perfect vacation rental.

Integration with one of our partner listing sites is another option you may want to consider.  Do you already list your properties with one of the vacation rental listing sites?  Did you even know you could integrate RMS with the most popular listing sites?  That means that all the information including your current rates and calendars can display on the listing site.   RMS becomes the system of record for pictures, unit details, rates and calendars.  Booking online through HomeAway and VRBO directly into RMS is another option available.
FlipKey  

FlipKey and TripAdvisor offer awesome ways to publish reviews to your listings.
 
Integration with GladProfessional, formerly Glad To Have You, is also available. See more info...
Don't like listing sites? or just want listing site independence? Check out Matt's blog.

 

RMS has many letters and reports that can assist you in communicating and following up with your guests.  In case you missed it check out the

After Reservation tutorial. (Must login to ResortPilot.com to view.)

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13 January 2016, 18:11
 

Resort Management System Blog RMS Thanksgiving Newsletter 2015

Happy Thanksgiving!
The RMS Team wishes all of our clients a happy Thanksgiving!  We at RMS know you work hard keeping owners and guests happy and consider it a privilege to offer you excellent vacation rental software and support.

This issue of the RMS Newsletter offers some helpful tips on gathering reviews with the After Reservation Letter as well as some information about the latest update from Programming.

If you have missed any newsletters you can always check out the Newsletter Archive or log in to resortpilot.com for more information and support.

 
 The RMS After Reservation Letter allows you to send your guests followup correspondence to thank them for staying at your vacation rental and to inquire how they enjoyed their 
stay or give them information such as a survey link.  The letter is available on the Reservation Reports menu and can be processed per reservation or by a range of departure dates for multiple reservations.
 
If you list your properties on  a listing site you could send them a link to review the property.  Reviews for VRBO are also published on HomeAway. If  you list on both sites, send the VRBO link and the guest does not necessarily have to create a login to submit their review.  Guest reviews can boost your rentals rankings and bookings.
 
Links can be added to letters and property or unit specific links can be stored in the Unit Inventory File for a property in the Custom Fields 16-20.
If you would like more information check out these tutorials:
Custom Field Tutorial
After Reservation Letter Tutorial
The latest RMS update version 5.1.10.16.15 contains program changes addressing issues that you have reported and features that you have suggested. 

Some of the improvements include a new email validation feature that checks for typos when emails are entered and the email address field will now allow more characters. Improvements were made to  the owner direct deposit process which is continuing to grow in popularity.

AdvancedCare members using Hosted RMS and PC-Based RMS systems may receive this update.  If you are unsure of your version information go to Help>About RMS>version information is located under our name and logo.  For information regarding what this update contains log in to the RMS Support Center and use your registered e-mail and password to view a Knowledgebase article, RMS Update History.  Please contact us if you have any questions or need assistance.  We are committed to your success!


Resort Management System is a product of AMS, Inc.
PO Box 14320, Charleston, SC 29422 USA
www.ResortManagementSystem.com  
Reservations, Advanced Accounting, Online Booking, Maintenance Work Orders, Reservation Login, Owner Login, Owner Direct Deposit, Cleaning Vendor Login, Housekeeping, Clean Text, Credit Card Integration, HomeAway and VRBO Integration, Glad Professional,  FlipKey, Travel Insurance, Kaba Locks

 

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01 December 2015, 16:24
 

Resort Management System Blog RMS Back to School Newsletter 2015




Subject: RMS Back to School Newsletter 2015
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RMS Back to School Newsletter
News and Information for AdvancedCare Members
Greetings
Even if you are out of school and don't have a child going back to school you can still celebrate the "Back to School Season". In this issue we have some helpful tips on how to get an "A" at work with your RMS. Our knowlegebase of articles and tutorials can also help your new staff learn  how to use RMS or call support and get some individualized tutoring session!

Login anytime to www.resortpilot.com to checkout the Knowledgebase, Tutorials, RMS 5 Help, or to submit a ticket,. 
If you think you might have missed a newsletter you can always check out our newsletter archives!

 
Take a SECOND Look at Some Basics 
Most property managers are always checking rates, taxes and commissions.  Entering payments correctly and running the Deposit report are also part of the daily routine.  Unfortunately steps 6, 7 and 8 often get taken for granted.  Take a moment and review these important steps:

6. Integrated credit card processing is convenient for both you and your guest.  You can enter credit cards and process payments as well as refunds when necessary.  But ALL transactions should be reviewed. The property manager should always check the list of transactions on the Deposit Report with the list of transactions deposited in the Bank. Your merchant processor can assist you in running your online credit card report. 

 

 7. Have you checked all the Owner Statements again?  Often we get calls about  issues on owner statements that could have been corrected easily BEFORE the finalize process.

 

8. Everyone wants to get to step 8 which always makes the owners happy! And all the steps leading up to the Finalize help contribute to their happiness and your success! 

Integrating with a Channel Partner
  
     

.

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In This Issue
RMS
CC Processing Partners

 

TYSYS    

VRP Logo  

HomeAway and VRBO

RMS partners with HomeAway and VRBO to allow property managers to integrate their properties with the popular listing site.  Property managers can create beautiful listings using RMS as the single system of record and even allow bookings from the listing sites.
FlipKey and TripAdvisor
FlipKey
RMS partners with FlipKey to offer property managers a way to optimize exposure and promote your listings to 25 million travelers monthly.  Gather reviews and publish them to  your website.  Find out more at FlipKey.com 
 
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31 August 2015, 20:42