Rosa: Pay Me Fairly And I Will Send You Lots Of Paying Guests


The Worth Of Cape Town Short Term Rental Agents

This is an open letter to the Cape Town short-term rental owner who sent me this email after I mentioned her less than par 10% commission. (Don’t read it if you are sensitive 😉

Re the commission, we really try to stay as affordable as possible so don’t have any spare ‘fat’ to throw around too much on commissions, especially when it’s peak season, as we find we fill up anyway, without any commissions…………I think 10% is quite acceptable just for a couple of emails! Rosa

cape-town-short-term-rental-agents Interesting: Being an accommodation agent in Cape Town is really a lot of fun. Most accommodation owners do very well-paying agents a competitive commission. Generally 20%.

Why would they do it?

Owners are obviously getting a return. Cape Town being such a popular world destination, even Lonely Planet rated Cape Town third after Brazil, and Trinidad in Cuba for 2014, short-term accommodation is in high demand. And given the trend in Camps Bay and Clifton where some owners give 30%, other accommodation owners have to follow or sit with empty beds.

Many owners look at the glass half empty instead of half full.

Giving agents comparative commission does not mean the owner is losing money (half empty). No. By incentivizing agents correctly owners are getting more bums on beds.

By The Way: Did you know that more than 400 Cape Town agents are eagerly waiting for you to wake-up?

Now that I have motivated my case let share my open letter to Rosa not her real name):

My Dear Rosa,

  • You said, “we don’t have any spare ‘fat’ to throw around too much on commissions, especially when it’s peak season, as we find we fill up anyway, without any commissions”. Rosa you are implying that you only need me when the going gets tough well. I can understand your way of looking at your business as much as I understand Dr. Lee DeForest who said, “Man will never reach the moon, regardless of all future scientific advances.”
  • If you pay me 10% commission and your opposition gives me 20% where do you think I’ll go first? In the long slow season you’ll never see me. I have too many other options by owners who respect our abilities.
  • If you tell me; “we really try to stay as affordable” then you may want to look at your business model. Cape Town is not about being cheap. And if this is your excuse then winter months will squeeze you even more. Wake-up and consider the glass as half full.
  • If you tell me: “I think 10% is quite acceptable just for a couple of emails!”, then you have no cooking idea of our abilities. You are clueless to all the effort it takes short-term rental agents to build up a reputation, get more than 30 000 followers on social media sites. Why do you think we have 1000’s of people on our newsletter? If it was only a few emails worth then you would be correct. But instead you are ignorant.
  • Rosa you only focus on the peak season. You obviously forget that it’s your annual income that counts. You may make a lot more by tuning your model and building relationships with many agents. At the moment you are going nowhere. This article on setting rates may help you.

Rosa. All The Best.


Johan Horak

One of the many proud Cape Town short term rental agents.

I am sure you are not like Rosa.

You may still question 20% commission. And the real percentage is not my concern when I wrote this letter. I am trying to tell you, Be aware of what your opposition is up to. If you are not performing as you should then consider the 400 Cape Town agents are eagerly waiting for you.

Learn How 400 Cape Town Short Term Rental Agents Can Benefit You

November 21, 2013


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