Housekeeping Software: The Best 5 Tools Made for Vacation Rentals
Today’s vacation rental guests demand the same quality of service from short term rental (STR) hosts as they’d expect from a major hotel. This means easy online check-in, personalized tips and recommendations, and the highest standards of cleanliness.
But running a rentals business is different to running a big hotel, with properties usually spread out over a bigger area. This makes it trickier to juggle house maintenance tasks and keep up with regular cleaning.
Without the right tools, scheduling and organizing housekeeping tasks can become chaotic, which is why you need a housekeeping software solution that’s specifically tailored to vacation rentals.
We’ve compiled a list of the 5 best housekeeping management software tools for vacation rentals, backed by real customers on accredited review sites like Software Advice and G2.
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What key issues does housekeeping software address?
As a vacation rental owner or manager, you’re constantly juggling countless variables, like new bookings, scheduling changes, and unexpected maintenance issues. On top of that, you have to organize the workflow of your cleaning staff to make sure everyone’s where they need to be.
Housekeeping software helps you with task management like:
Complex payroll and billing processes
Efficiently distributing clean linens
Workload balancing and forecasting
Communicating with staff while they’re in the field
Scheduling in solutions for unexpected maintenance issues as they arise
A housekeeping app should relieve stress for you and your staff, making it easier for them to track their processes while you can see an overview of everything that’s happening with all your properties, all in one place.
What are the must-haves in software for housekeeping?
One of the most important considerations when comparing vacation rental cleaning software solutions is that it should offer an all-in-one solution that combines every aspect of your property management business in one place.
Here are some must-haves that software for housekeeping should include:
Integrations with multiple channel managers/property management systems
Automatic schedule generation
Ability to see current cleanliness status of every unit (such as clean, dirty, or occupied)
Ability for staff to manage their workload (they can accept, decline, track their time)
Ability to plan ahead (you need reports for more than just today)
Ability for staff to communicate from the field via a mobile app
Ability for staff to upload images and videos, submit issues, and mark tasks complete
Ability for administrators, managers, and staff to be automatically alerted when issues arise (for example, a clean wasn’t marked complete and the guest is about to enter)
Accounting software integration for billing and payroll
Track and generate reports for billing, invoicing, and payroll
Workload balancing between staff members so the team works more efficiently as a unit
Workload forecasting to make sure that staffing needs are met (helps you to know when to hire more staff, send employees on vacation, schedule special project, etc.)
Route optimization so cleaners visit properties in a geographically logical order
Linen packing reports, allowing for bags to be pre-packed so staff can quickly pick them up and head to their properties
Mobile-friendly access so information can be shared on the cleaner’s mobile device while they’re in the field
Real-time progress tracking so you always know what still needs to get done
By finding a solution that combines all of the elements listed above, you’ll no longer have to rely on spreadsheets or use multiple software tools to run your business. The right housekeeping software will help you to become an accurate, process-based organization that minimizes errors and increases guest satisfaction.
The 5 best housekeeping software solutions
Software as a service (SaaS) solutions are revolutionizing the vacation rental industry, from smart locks to digital guides. One of the biggest areas where clever automation and innovative software can help streamline and scale your rentals business is by using it to help schedule housekeeping across your properties.
We’ve carried out an in-depth analysis of the 5 best housekeeping software solutions that optimize your processes, help you to manage staff, and keep your guests satisfied. Let’s dive in.
Operto Teams stands out as the best housekeeping software solution because of advanced features that give property managers hours of their lives back every week. In the words of one customer, “It saves our business so much time, plus we have faith that it will always work properly. We would recommend this product to anyone”.
Formerly called VRScheduler, the Operto Teams solution was developed by serial entrepreneur and vacation rental owner Jill Mason. She kept forgetting to tell housekeepers when they had to clean, which got her thinking about the fact that there was no one solution that allowed property managers to seamlessly coordinate cleaning and maintenance for all their properties.
When designing her solution, she did so with vacation rental managers and the unique problems that they face in mind. That’s why Operto Teams seamlessly integrates with your PMS and channel managers, allowing you to see all your properties and their related tasks in one place.
In the Master Calendar, you get a birds eye view of what needs to be done at any given time. Plus, our software allows for automated billing and invoicing, seamless staff scheduling, real-time alerts, and streamlined communication with your team.
In short, Operto Teams makes it possible for property managers to juggle scheduled cleanings, spontaneous bookings, guest requests, planned maintenance, and unexpected issues without missing a beat.
Operto Teams’ features include:
Multiple channel manager/PMS integration
Ability to organize and color code properties by region
Master Calendar view of tasks, employees, issues, and property workflow
Automated route-based color-coding
Real-time employee tracking
Ability to communicate in real time with staff in the field
Staff Dashboards translated into 12 different languages
Employee scheduling and inspection reports
QuickBooks and other accounting software integration
Ability to bill owners through Stripe
Owner Portal that allows owners to log in to view reports and enter their planned stays
Linen bag packing reports
Amazing customer service
Plus, we’re constantly creating new features as the need arises. Says one user, “When we asked for a German version, the team responded quickly, and together we launched the German version within two or three weeks”.
And when our customers requested unlimited image sharing from their cleaners in the field, we made it happen.
Operto Teams truly is an all-in-one vacation rental housekeeping solution that will reduce stress by saving you time, consolidating your workflows, and helping you to minimize errors. Plus, we guarantee transparent, consistent, and affordable pricing to make sure our solution is sustainable for your business.
Properly is another great option for property managers looking for ways to streamline their vacation rental cleaning processes. The software was created back in 2014 to help property managers and owners monitor their property turnovers to ensure guest satisfaction.
With Properly, you can create checklists for cleaning staff and service providers, create SOP checklists, and manage all of your properties remotely.
Properly’s features include:
A clean and simple interface
Easy-to-see daily activity and schedules
An app and desktop version
Syncs with various booking platforms
Ability to remotely track property inspections
Notifications when issues arise
Good customer support
While Properly offers a user-friendly interface for users, and some useful functions, such as syncing with booking platforms and remote inspection capabilities, it doesn’t hold up against Operto Teams.
For example, Properly doesn’t offer billing and payroll features or route optimization. Plus, a big drawback is that calendar syncing and updating “tends to lag quite a bit and poses some problems scheduling last-minute bookings with cleaners."
It also lacks linen reports, which end up being a huge time saver for managers who have lots of properties.
Breezeway is another tool that gives property managers the ability to schedule and automate housekeeping tasks. The solution has been around for about 5 years and was designed by Jeremy Gall, who gained experience working alongside property managers during his time at his vacation rental listing and review site, FlipKey.
This software allows for real-time data syncing from your PMS, and it automatically schedules staff based on availability, location, and other default settings. You can also customize workflows for each property, as well as schedule routine maintenance tasks in advance.
Breezeway’s features include:
Automated task scheduling
Real-time employee tracking and issue notifications
Automatic updates when tasks are completed
Customizable inspections and workflows for each property
Streamlined internal communication with cleaning staff
Ability to inform owners of maintenance issues and completed tasks
Good customer service
While Breezeway is known for its clean interface and advanced UX design, it is missing some of the important features that Operto Teams offers. First off, the mobile app capabilities are limited, as task scheduling on a phone is difficult.Plus, the software doesn’t always update you when a change is made, like a team member addressing a maintenance issue, so you have to manually check the progress of the task yourself. Also, some users note “slight compatibility issues with property management software”, as well as lag between the mobile app and desktop versions, which could certainly cause issues if you’re in a pinch and need to check on the status of a task.
This housekeeping solution, which was founded in Hawaii in 2016, is targeted towards vacation rental managers and hosts who want to hire and organize Airbnb cleaners and cleaning services.Turnover BnB allows you to sync your calendars from all major booking platforms and channel managers in a central location, meaning you can organize all your bookings and cleanings in one place. It also allows you to automate scheduling and payments, as well as communicate with cleaners through the software’s mobile app.
Automated calendar sync from various booking platforms (Airbnb, Vrbo, Homeaway, etc.)
Automated payments to cleaners and cleaning companies through Stripe
Automated messages to cleaners to confirm tasks
Option to customize cleaning checklists
Easy to see overview of daily activity and schedules
Real-time updates on task status
Drawbacks of TurnoverBnB include:
Limited mobile app features
Can’t leave customized notes for cleaners
Direct bookings aren’t automatically added (have to be entered manually)
No linen bag packing reports
No workload balancing or forecasting
Though our final recommendation is a general vacation rental software solution, some of its features include housekeeping management and communication with cleaners. For example, Host Tools allows you to schedule cleaners and coordinate housekeeping and maintenance tasks.
Plus, it sends reminder notifications to your cleaners so they never miss a cleaning, all through automated communication. However, because the task isn’t primarily a cleaning solution, it lacks many of the features that you’ll find with Operto Teams.
Host Tools’ features include:
Automatic syncing between calendars and booking platforms
Automated messages to cleaning staff
Provides a platform for cleaners to see all upcoming cleanings
Good customer service
Drawbacks of Host Tools include:
No workflow balancing or forecasting
No employee scheduling or inspection reports
Lacks capacity to integrate with accounting software for billing and payroll
Calendars and schedule changes aren’t automatically shared with cleaners
What is the best vacation rental housekeeping software?
There are some very sophisticated choices available to vacation rental property managers and cleaning companies, but Operto Teams is the most complete solution. User reviews back this up, with comments like “it has truly changed how we function for the better” and “we couldn’t run our business without it”.
The software offers an array of advanced features and fair pricing, but on top of that, there’s an incredibly responsive team working behind it.
When users wanted the ability for staff to make and share property videos in-app, that functionality arrived just days later. And when users wanted customizable color-coding, we delivered.
Related Post: Vacation Rental Cleaning Contracts: What You Need to Know
If you want to find out how much time you save using Operto Teams
Frequently asked questions about housekeeping software
What is housekeeping software?
Housekeeping software gives property managers the tools to schedule and organize their cleaning staff and ensure that related tasks are completed correctly and efficiently. It is a software solution that you can often integrate with your existing PMS.
How do you manage housekeeping staff?
Housekeeping software is a great way to manage housekeeping staff because it provides you with an overview of your team’s schedules. It also helps you to create cleaning checklists, optimize cleaning routes, and communicate with your team members on the go.
What are the types of housekeeping?
There are multiple types of housekeeping in the hospitality industry. The main type of house cleaning is post-check-out/pre-check-in housekeeping. However, you also have to tend to guest housekeeping requests as they arise, as well as routine maintenance tasks.
How can housekeeping software help?
Housekeeping software can help you to keep your housekeeping staff organized and ensure that no property goes uncleaned. It can also help you to optimize your scheduling and organize payments come time for payroll and billing.
What are the benefits of housekeeping software?
There are numerous benefits of using housekeeping software, including increased staff productivity, improved internal communications, an enhanced guest experience, and an overall more organized housekeeping team. The biggest benefit is that housekeeping software saves you time and minimizes scheduling-related stressors.