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Beyond Airbnb: Exploring Alternative Rental Platforms for Second Homeowners

ByDave Stopher

Oct 17, 2023

The emergence of the collaborative economy has revolutionized our perception of property ownership and leasing. Airbnb, the trailblazer in peer-to-peer transient accommodations, has cemented itself as a household name, offering proprietors a profitable avenue to monetize their secondary residences. Nonetheless, as the landscape of short-term leasing has progressed, so too have the alternatives accessible to property proprietors. In this exposé, we shall delve into substitute leasing platforms tailored to those possessing secondary homes, seeking to optimize their property’s potential, particularly in the context of buying a second home. From Vrbo to HomeAway and beyond, these platforms proffer distinct benefits and cater to a spectrum of preferences.

Vrbo (Vacation Rentals by Owner)

Vrbo, an abbreviation for Vacation Rentals by Owner, has garnered acclaim as a dependable alternative to Airbnb. Vrbo predominantly concentrates on vacation rentals, alluring proprietors who favour leasing their abodes to families and groups with inclinations for extended sojourns. The platform’s focal point on entirety abode rentals rather than communal spaces renders it a preferred choice for proprietors in pursuit of a consistent income flow sans perpetual turnover.

Vrbo equips proprietors with tools for configuring their rental rates, orchestrating bookings, and even furnishes property security schemes for supplemental assurance. What distinguishes Vrbo is its specific focus on holiday and vacation rentals, rendering a dedicated conduit for proprietors eager to attract visitors seeking protracted getaways.


HomeAway, under the umbrella of the Expedia Group, is another vacation rental platform that has garnered a substantial following in the realm of short-term leasing. Analogous to Vrbo, HomeAway directs its attention to providing proprietors with a medium to catalogue their domiciles for holiday rentals. Its user-friendly interface streamlines the process for secondary homeowners to formulate alluring property listings that entice holidaymakers.

One of the remarkable facets of HomeAway is its global outreach, enabling proprietors to connect with voyagers from across the globe. With listings spanning over 190 nations, it unfolds a vista to a diverse spectrum of patrons. Furthermore, HomeAway proffers a booking guarantee to safeguard proprietors from cancellations and deceptive activities.


While Booking.com is primarily renowned for hotel reservations, it has broadened its repertoire to encompass holiday rentals, thus serving as a notable substitute for secondary homeowners. Capitalising on its extensive user base, Booking.com affords proprietors access to a vast demographic of prospective patrons. This platform is especially advantageous for those amenable to enticing a global audience and amiable towards leasing their secondary abodes throughout the year.

One noteworthy advantage of employing Booking.com is its integration into the expansive travel sphere. Patrons seeking accommodations on the site can concurrently secure reservations for flights and car rentals, creating a convenient all-encompassing hub for travellers. For secondary homeowners, this equates to the potential for mutual promotions and access to an extensive network of wayfarers.


FlipKey, an asset of TripAdvisor, is a holiday rental platform offering proprietors the opportunity to list their properties and connect with globetrotters in search of short-term lodging. The influence of TripAdvisor within the tourism industry lends credibility to FlipKey, which can be a persuasive incentive for proprietors seeking to cultivate faith with their guests.

An enticing facet of FlipKey is its evaluation system. Prospective patrons can peruse reviews authored by prior renters, thereby fostering transparency and faith. For secondary homeowners, this can serve as a valuable instrument for attracting additional bookings and guaranteeing a positive leasing experience for both parties.

Plum Guide

For secondary homeowners aspiring to proffer unparalleled, high-end accommodations, Plum Guide extends an alternative. This platform concentrates on curating a collection of extraordinary residences, ensuring that each listing satisfies stringent criteria pertaining to quality and design. Plum Guide stands as the preferred choice for homeowners desiring to formulate a more exclusive sojourn for their guests.

Plum Guide dispenses with the ambiguity associated with pinpointing the ideal rental, as it retains a panel of experts tasked with personally vetting each property. This rigorous methodology assures secondary homeowners of their capacity to entice discerning patrons who value excellence and meticulousness.


Although Airbnb has exerted hegemony over the realm of short-term leasing for numerous years, secondary homeowners now possess an array of alternative platforms for contemplation. Each of these platforms addresses varying inclinations and offers unique advantages, whether it be a focus on holiday rentals, an expansive global reach, harmonisation with travel amenities, confidence-building via reviews, or a tailored, high-end experience.

In the process of determining the most suitable platform, secondary homeowners should ponder their objectives, target demographic, and the nature of the experience they wish to extend. The advancing landscape of short-term leasing proffers myriad opportunities for property possessors to harness the latent potential of their secondary abodes, fashioning an exciting juncture for those seeking entry into the market or diversification of their extant leasing portfolio. Through an exploration of these Airbnb alternatives, secondary homeowners may pinpoint the optimal platform in alignment with the distinctiveness of their property and hosting prerequisites.