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Vacation Rentals By Owner [VRBO] reviews first appeared on Complaints Board on Aug 7, 2007. The latest review property # 1089244 Cabin with Spectacular View of Whiteside Mountain on VRBO is a DUMP!!! DO NOT RENT!!! was posted on Jul 28, 2021. The latest complaint won't allow negative honest post was resolved on Sep 08, 2014. Vacation Rentals By Owner [VRBO] has an average consumer rating of 2 stars from 203 reviews. Vacation Rentals By Owner [VRBO] has resolved 32 complaints.

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Austin, Texas
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Vacation Rentals By Owner [VRBO] Complaints & Reviews, Page 7

VRBO #768521 - Lemon Bay/Engelwood, FL — Owner reneged on agreement and will not refund our money

Review #[protected] “Private 2 Br Waterfront Cottage With Deep Open Water Dock On Lemon Bay” Owner reneged on...

VRBO / Homeawayfailure to return refundable deposits and overages

Made a reservation for a house while my husband and I were in San DIego for a week to celebrate our silver anniversary and host a family reunion.
Found a house - price was good and so were the photos. Owner was very cooperative and forthcoming while we were making the reservations,. She knew and was okay with the fact that I wouldn't have firm numbers for how many would be staying at the house nor how many would be at the family reunion being held one day at the house until the week of the event.
Gave her an estimate early on - which had to be significantly reduced when many people were unable to afford the airfares to come to San DIego over Memorial weekend. House and stay were wonderful. Problem is that I have been trying for (3)+ months to get my refundable deposits back... totalling nearly $3, 000. VRBO/Homeaways they can't help, the owner is solely responsible and the owner refuses to respond to any Emails. I am assigned to a military base in Europe so can't afford to call the owner directly.
Desired result: refund my deposits/overages for $2748 —
Owner: Laura Christine
Address of rental: 1114 Skylark, San Diego, CA

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    VRBO Rentals — my stay

    Stayed in the resort of Ocean City, Md., who the owner was Randy Bosley. After our stay, Randy sends a text...

    VRBOwill not stop previous owners ad

    I purchased a condo. VRBO refuses to view my paperwork and stop advertising the previous owners ad. I cannot rent from the site as the calls are being reverted back to former owner who owns another unit in same building. This is going on since July 10. I am so sick of it.

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      VRBO(unit#133921), unethical behavior b/c payment wasn't rec'd

      Owner promised us he would rent his unit to our family, and then rented it to another party instead, without first notifying us. On May 20, I phoned the owner (Bill Thompson VRBO property # 1641319, Angels Rest Vacation Rental) and asked if we could receive a discount (or free night) on our already booked (through VRBO) upcoming stay in July. (FYI: VRBO had already processed our initial credit card deposit.) He said all he could offer was for us to cancel our reservation and we'd then get the credit card refund, and then rebook with him direct (not through VRBO). Therefore, we wouldn't have to pay that VRBO fee of approximately $138. He said that we should mail him a check and when he received it, he would confirm our booking. We immediately mailed the check (but it did not reach him fast enough, so he then booked "our" unit. He emailed us on May 27 to inform us our reservation was cancelled and immediately I phoned him to plead with him not to do this and reconsider, he informed me that the new tenants already rented it and for 2 more additional days. I told him I could give him a credit card again (and even pay the $138 fee rather than lose this reservation). He said he was sorry, but since he hadn't gotten our check yet he felt compelled to take the new reservation. I feel he owed us a courtesy phone call and the opportunity to say "since our check wasn't received, please let us wire you money, or take our credit card" — like you did initially — before you actually offered us the discount. If it meant us losing the reservation, we would have rather not receive the discount.

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        VRBOreview process

        I was a renter and when I posted a negative review on their site following my stay, and the owner of the property responded with lies, I was not able to respond to that. All I could do was file a complaint with VRBO, which I am sure goes nowhere. They consider a response to the owner's comments to be a "duplicate review ". So essentially they could care less about the renter's experience. I will NEVER book through them again !!

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          VRBOrental

          On 6/6/16 I booked a family vacation in Steamboat Springs for after Christmas. To make a long story short VRBO accepted my reservation and put a $1, 500 hold on my credit card. Later in the day the owner sent me an email saying sorry but it is booked. I knew this was nonsense and challenged the owner. They sent me another email admitting that after I reserved their unit and a hold was placed on my credit card they decided they wanted it for themselves. What bad business. There should be some type of consumer protection that when someone offers something they have some type of obligation once a hold is placed on a credit card.

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            VRBO / Homeawayowner rights

            As a recent owner of a vacation property, I immediately thought to use VRBO/Home Away to rent it out. I have been on the other side as a traveler and have generally had good experiences using their site. However, I am appalled at the fees they not only charge the traveler now but also the owner. In addition, if you do not subscribe to their service, they with hold your money until the renter has "checked in". I feel I should be able to deposit security deposits, etc. as necessary to uphold the property and it essentially, feels like the owner has no control over their property and income for it. I am very unhappy with their service and I am planning to withdraw the property from their site as it is not fair to travelers and owners alike.

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              Home Away/VRBOrefuse to give us our refund from our cancellation

              Booked a condo on August 21st 2015 and had to cancell due to a family matter we had put down 292 dollars which was half the weekly rate that was listed. Have contacted the customer service dept several times with no luck yet and when we try to reach the home owner theres never a answer. We have traveled a lot over the last 30 years and this is the worst company I have ever dealt with

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                VRBO/Homeawaybooking a home on vrbo or homeaway

                The VRBO or Homeaway "Book it Now" feature is a rip off. Those companies are charging travelers and owners for travelers to be able to book the home "now". Travelers are charged an extra fee that, if the traveler books directly thru the owner, the traveler would not be charged. The owner is charged an extra fee. The only winner is VRBO. There is absolutely NO advantage to book thru Homeaway or VRBO. They have recently discontinued their cancellation insurance for Travelers.
                You are better off speaking with the owner directly and avoid using VRBO "book it now" to book your vacation.

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                  • Jr
                    [email protected]!# Jun 08, 2016

                    yes this was true for us also, we learned our lesson. booked for next year directly w/the property and it's $700 less (plus it's a different unit and it is larger and much, much nicer ).

                    0 Votes

                  VRBOservice fee, and deceptive presentation of our listings

                  Member since 1999 I always had the premiere listing in our market, I paid top fee and did everything that was required to keep the premiere space. Now vrbo has put so many sub areas that they have decreased our leads by over 75%. Not only that when someone does find our site they are also furnished alternatives, usually cheaper). Now where they are deceptive they create hits on other owner sits giving the impression that vrbo is creating a massive amount of leads. To cap it off they also offer immediate transfer from our listings to the resorts that they represent. This is a very corrupt system that now even punishes our customers that list with us. In their main web sites they don't suggest that clients of the resorts check us out. We will now pay the least price we can get from vrbo and we will rent as many listings out of the vrbo network as possible.

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                    • Ma
                      Mary Hopple May 16, 2016

                      I am a VRBO owner who has paid for and listed my property for over two years. Since Expedia has bought the site my inquiries and reservations have dropped by 95%. I believe this is due to the new fees VRBO is charging guests to book as well as sending potential guest to other sites and resorts that are owned by Expedia. I am disgusted by what Expedia/VRBO has done to the owners and guests. I am now putting my property on other sites and will not renew my contract with VRBO. The contract renewal fee is like dropping money down a bottomless pit. In good faith you pay the fee for listing and now get nothing in return. I can't believe Expedia has destroyed what use to be a good website for both owner and guests. Someone please create a new website that is once again is rental by owner!

                      1 Votes
                    • Mi
                      Michele Cobb Blair Nov 28, 2016
                      This comment was posted by
                      a verified customer
                      Verified customer

                      @Mary Hopple I am also a Property owner that is discusted with vrbo . WE NEED TO UNITE AND START A REAL VACATION BY OWNER SITE ! [protected] I am IN !

                      0 Votes
                    • Tl
                      T L Howard Apr 18, 2016
                      This comment was posted by
                      a verified customer
                      Verified customer

                      I agree the new service fee for booking on VRBO and Homeaway is a total rip off. I also have been an advertiser on VRBO for 12 years. No more after May 30, 2016. Thomas Howard

                      1 Votes
                    • Ka
                      karenw729 Apr 04, 2016
                      This comment was posted by
                      a verified customer
                      Verified customer

                      I am a frequent vrbo renter. No more with this new service fee. What a rip off! I tried to contact vrbo/homeway to complain and there's no way to contact them. So obviously this new service fee is nothing but a gimmick to enrich them at the expense of property owners and renters. Sorry vrbo property owners but I'm going to back to traditional methods of finding vacation properties. All you property owners need to complain to homeaway or move your properties to a new site which is truly "by owner."

                      1 Votes
                    • Ke
                      Kelly Finn Mar 12, 2016
                      This comment was posted by
                      a verified customer
                      Verified customer

                      Yes the new "service" fee will help Expedia increase profits and reduce the quality of VRBO and likely result in fewer bookings for owners. It's time to create a true vacation rentals by owners website (i.e. without corporate Expedia).

                      1 Votes

                    VRBO/Homeawayextra fee / "new" business perspective

                    So we talked to VRBO's "customer service" yesterday, and just to let everyone know what their new "business perspective" is, and I quote "we do not see the renters as your (the home owners) customer, we see them as our customers providing them the service." Last time I checked, I paid the mortgage, I deal with any problems, I keep the customer satisfied and returning year after year. VRBO is a listing/advertising service PERIOD!! Apparently the home owners are not customers, even though we pay them thousands of dollars a year! Oh, buy the way, they also said that we should not be dealing with the renter directly, solely using their sytem and if we didn't should still be charging the 4-10% fee. HUH????? This company has gone Bat S*** Crazy.
                    Did some research...VacationHomeRentals.com (associated with Trip Advisor), utilizes the old system that VRBO used, which served everyone well, and kept the business between the renter and the owner. It is also about half of the price. I'm taking my four properties and heading out of dodge, before I have to pay for a renewal!!
                    VRBO got greedy and will be their downfall. I am spreading the word, to all that I know who use VRBO (which is a lot), to start heading to this other site, as well as bypassing the "book now" system and deal directly with the home owner.
                    ByeBye VRBO

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                      • St
                        Steven J. Slater Dec 11, 2016
                        This comment was posted by
                        a verified customer
                        Verified customer

                        @VRBO Why do owners get charged for cc transactions between renters and VRBO? That's VRBO;s cost of doing business, not the owners. (supported by your posting, answer from customer service.) In the new business model, VRBO is set up as the retailer selling our products vs. the former - a market service that charged owners annual fees. Along that allegory, without supply, VRBO has no business. So am confused they charge the owners vs. renters (their customers). To compensate, we raise our rates, becoming less competitive on the market . . . consequently, our rates no longer match with Airbnb's, and, our bookings are way down this year compared to last 10 - (economics 101). So, why do we need VRBO marketing services anymore?

                        0 Votes
                      • Ja
                        Janet Whittemore May 03, 2016
                        This comment was posted by
                        a verified customer
                        Verified customer

                        I am very disappointed in VRBO's administrative changes that force me to use their automatic booking system so they can charge my
                        customers an extra fee and penalize me if I do not choose to use their booking process. I have been using this site since cyberrental.
                        I have paid a premium price for platinum for several years and check and update my site daily. I am so unhappy with this administrative
                        change and feel this company should not dip into the pockets of the renters with their new booking policies. It seems to me we are
                        dealing with cooperate greed. I will consider not renewing my contract after using this site for the past 20 years. The platinum promise
                        for better visibility is a service that does not work and is controlled by this company to force the owners to use their automatic booking service.
                        I have found my website buried because I refuse to sign up for their booking process after paying this very high premium.
                        weneedavacation works well here on Cape Cod and myself and a number of Cape Codders do not plan to be bullied by VRBO that has
                        become too greedy. We have already started a coalition here to inform home owners and plan not to renew with VRBO in protest of their
                        corporate greed.

                        0 Votes
                      • Ba
                        badbusiness_practises Mar 11, 2016
                        This comment was posted by
                        a verified customer
                        Verified customer

                        This is a terrible scam, so many scams.

                        0 Votes

                      VRBO/Homeawaynew fee

                      VRBO has implemented an outrageous new fee charged to the traveler. We have been loyal customers for years. We have listed 2 properties and have rented from other owners all over the world too many times to count. This fee completely ruins the business model we loved and makes VRBO look like a greedy corporation. They implemented this fee after we paid our advertising fee with no warningand are offering no refunds. We are actively looking for a new website on which to list. What a huge disappointment.

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                        • La
                          lakeshish May 03, 2016
                          This comment was posted by
                          a verified customer
                          Verified customer

                          Hello,
                          We are also vacation home owners as well as renters. Pretty disgusted with the new greedy direction that VRBO has headed and would also consider switching to another advertising company. Any other suggestions out there besides Trip Advisor (going to check that out soon)? Hopefully, another company will rise to the top and let owners be in charge. Vacation Rental by Owners needs to remember the "by owners" part!!

                          0 Votes
                        • Sl
                          SleepyP Mar 11, 2016

                          So we talked to VRBO's "customer service" yesterday, and just to let everyone know what their new "business perspective" is, and I quote "we do not see the renters as your (the home owners) customer, we see them as our customers providing them the service." Last time I checked, I paid the mortgage, I deal with any problems, I keep the customer satisfied and returning year after year. VRBO is a listing/advertising service PERIOD!! Apparently the home owners are not customers, even though we pay them thousands of dollars a year! Oh, buy the way, they also said that we should not be dealing with the renter directly, solely using their sytem and if we didn't should still be charging the 4-10% fee. HUH????? This company has gone Bat S*** Crazy.
                          Did some research...VacationHomeRentals.com (associated with Trip Advisor), utilizes the old system that VRBO used, which served everyone well, and kept the business between the renter and the owner. It is also about half of the price. I'm taking my four properties and heading out of dodge, before I have to pay for a renewal!!
                          VRBO got greedy and will be their downfall. I am spreading the word, to all that I know who use VRBO (which is a lot), to start heading to this other site, as well as bypassing the "book now" system and deal directly with the home owner.
                          ByeBye VRBO

                          0 Votes

                        VRBOvrbo new fee!

                        As a rental owner I'm extremely frustrated with this new service fee! It is absolutely unacceptable and I am appalled by this new fee. At first they were charging only the owners and now also the guests. This new fee completely disregards any agreements that were in place with existing owners and renters. I will be looking for another service! VRBO is absolutely unprofessional, no respect! They need only money and they don't care about anything!

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                          • Ke
                            Kelly Finn Mar 12, 2016
                            This comment was posted by
                            a verified customer
                            Verified customer

                            It is based on them increasing profits and owners decreasing bookings

                            1 Votes

                          VRBO — new service fee

                          I am a homeowner and I am appalled by this new service fee being charged to my guests! I was completely...

                          VRBO/Homeaway — unethical practices

                          Vrbo has now done three things in the last 6 months to increase their profits with no consideration of the...

                          VRBOvrbo did nothing to help

                          I had used VRBO in the past and rented a place. The property ended up being a fraud, so I cancelled it. Then I called the owner and asked him to return my damaged deposit of $300, but he refused to give my money back. I told him that his property description was a fraud and he must return the money, I gave him 24 hours to do that. Later I received a message from the owner saying he'll come to my house and deal with me personally! I contacted the VRBO immediately and they promised to do something. I thought they'll ban that owner or call the police, but they did nothing at all! In the end owner just changed the description of his property and never returned my money. I'm very disappointed with VRBO.

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                            VRBOunethical

                            I had a negative experience at the Lotus Lake House in Grass Valley, CA, listed on VRBO. I posted a factual review and the owner was allowed to attack me personally both on and off the website. He wrote harassing emails and left voicemails threatening me if I did not remove the review. Apparently this practice is allowed by VRBO. The owner was then allowed to post personal information about me on the website and VRBO refused to remove the listing even after I escalated the problem to a manager. So there is a reason there are very few negative reviews posted on VRBO.

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                              VRBO.comvrbo scam

                              I paid a $4, 500 deposit on a condo at "Aston at the Whaler on Kaanapali beach" on February 21, 2015. The advertiser/owner (Brian Mead/William Watts) ended up being a fraud and I lost my deposit. I only caught on to the scam because I was sent an email by someone purporting to be VRBO's Trust Dept telling me that the advertiser was a fraud. I found out that this email I received was actually a phishing email to try to get me to call them and give them money as well. The email told me to call one of two numbers and they would help me find another, presumably, legitimate, rental. (Looks like I was being scammed by two different crooks). I called Brian Mead to try and get my deposit back and he tried "stringing me along" telling me that he was "legit" and would be there waiting for me to hand me the keys to the condo when I arrived there. However, he wouldn't provide any contract and when I demanded my money back, he quit answering my calls or my emails. His name, probably false, was Brian Mead. His phone number was [protected]. His email was [protected]@gmail.com. I tracked his phone number to a Chapel Hill, North Carolina address. He had me wire my deposit to a bank account in the name of William Watts in Cudahy, Wisconsin. I've rented from VRBO before and had no problems so I had my guard down. Now I'll be cautious again but I'll never use VRBO.com again. They are impossible to get hold of by phone and, obviously, don't have the security in place to keep these scammers off their website.

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                                • Va
                                  Valoose Jan 17, 2013
                                  This comment was posted by
                                  a verified customer
                                  Verified customer

                                  As a host the sales team calls you up and promises you all sorts of services as reservation manager, however this is outsourced and as soon as you set it up it wont allow you without SS# BUYER BEWARE.

                                  0 Votes
                                • So
                                  Sonce Jan 11, 2013
                                  This comment was posted by
                                  a verified customer
                                  Verified customer

                                  We used VRBO a couple times. We had issues and I wanted to share our experiences. I was unable to post a review, even though I got emails asking me to rate the properties! Apparently the post is only accepted if it is positive. I won't be using the site anymore and I warn anyone who uses it to beware.

                                  1 Votes

                                www.vrbo.cofake contact info and impossible to reach the online agent

                                I registered on the website www.vrbo.co, but I was disappointed. I tried to find a house for my vacation, but the website worked so slowly and all provided info there was real scam. I checked several phones numbers and all of them were fakes. I tried to contact the online chat agents, but they kept silence. I wonder if there are other people, who had the same experience. Let’s share views about this website.

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