The Best Vacation Rental Sites for Owners (and How to Not Choose Between Them)

The Evolve Team
The Evolve Team
February 29, 2024

There’s a lot to get in order when turning a second home into a vacation rental for the first time

But let’s say you’ve done all the pre-work. The place is upgraded with key amenities, furnished to perfection, fully inventoried, and deep-cleaned. Now it’s ready to hit the internet and start accepting bookings.

The biggest question you need to answer is: where should I list my vacation rental?

It’s no secret that putting your home on a major listing site is a must for getting seen by travelers and maximizing your rental income. But with so many options, it can be overwhelming — not to mention time-consuming — to decide what’s best for you. 

Below is a short list of the absolute best short-term rental sites. You’ll get all the information you need, from the unique benefits each site offers to how much it costs to list.

In This Article 
Google Vacation Rental
Hopper Homes
Homes & Villas by Marriott Bonvoy™

Spoiler alert: Evolve lists your home on all the best vacation rental sites for owners as a built-in part of our services. Chat with us today to learn more.

1. Airbnb

In-image text reads, "Airbnb owner benefits are: constant tech upgrades, household name, and over 1 billion guest arrivals. Owner costs are 3% commission plus $0 subscription fee plus 0% processing fee."

A longtime giant in the vacation rental industry, Airbnb is a household name that gives owners access to more than 150 million users around the world. Our Distribution team says they tend to serve younger, tech-savvy travelers looking for more affordable accommodations.

How Does Airbnb Work for Owners?

Airbnb is truly a DIY, be-your-own-boss experience for owners. You can rent out anything from a single room in shared space to a private house or a totally unique vacation home.

This makes Airbnb a catch-all for nearly any type of accommodation. Signing up as a host takes seconds, and while you need to meet basic requirements to do so successfully (and establish a positive review rating to stay on the site), the rest is in your hands.

Owners are in charge of creating their listing, responding to guest inquiries, and managing reviews. Airbnb offers help via standard 24/7 support lines and a community forum. (You can post your property listing to the group for feedback, for instance.) But they also incentivize owners to create the best possible experiences for guests by reserving priority support resources for Superhosts. 

Behind the scenes, Airbnb is constantly evolving their interface, and they frequently launch new features to improve how the site runs for owners. (For example, there’s a “Today tab” for upcoming check-ins and a “Description starter” for listing help.) 

With over 4 million hosts across the globe and nearly 7 million homes to date, Airbnb is certainly one of the best vacation rental sites for owners. But if you’re new to vacation rental and hoping for more guidance around what it takes to build your business successfully, Airbnb’s hands-off approach is something to keep in mind.

How Much Does It Cost to List on Airbnb?

Airbnb charges a 3% commission on every booking you secure, though there are some circumstances that might increase this percentage. When a reservation is confirmed, Airbnb sends you a price breakdown email detailing the fees and taxes they collect, what your guests pay (including a variable service fee), and what money ultimately lands in your pocket.

2. Vrbo

In-image text reads, "Vrbo owner benefits are: longer guest stays, simple, user-friendly platform, and access to Expedia marketing and exposure. Owner costs are 5% booking fee option or $499 subscription fee option, plus 3% processing fee."

Founded in 1995 and the oldest player in the game, Vrbo has made a recent surge in vacation rental popularity with more than 48 million active monthly users, according to our Distribution team. They heavily market over 2 million listings around the world to families, encouraging group getaways that inspire connection.

How Does Vrbo Work for Owners?

Much like Airbnb, Vrbo gives owners fairly free rein to make their hosting experience what they want it to be. Unlike Airbnb, though, Vrbo doesn’t allow any accommodations in shared spaces. 

To get started, you need to answer a few quick questions about your home before plugging in account creation information. From there, you can build your listing and jump into the scene. 

Vrbo offers standard 24/7 support and helps guide owners toward different software you can integrate to manage all the brass tacks of your business. Vrbo also lives under the Expedia parent company, so owners get the marketing and exposure benefits that come with the influence of Expedia and their affiliates.

Our Distribution team says Vrbo is one of the best vacation rental sites for owners wanting a more simplistic and familiar interface. (This is also favored by their guests, who lean a bit older.) Stays tend to be longer than they are on Airbnb, which translates to less frequency in turnarounds (and potentially fewer cleaning and maintenance bills). 

How Much Does It Cost to List on Vrbo?

If Vrbo feels like a good fit, there are two base cost options. You can opt to pay a 5% service fee on every confirmed booking, or you can choose an annual subscription of $499.  Our Distribution team says the best route for you will come down to how quickly your revenue might hit a $499 fee threshold, as well as your personal preference around payment frequency.

Whichever option you choose, Vrbo also charges a 3% processing fee on total payment and taxes for their owners. You can find a Payout summary in your Vrbo account to see net income after a reservation is complete, which also accounts for the service fee guests pay. (Much like Airbnb, our Distribution team says that figure consistently varies based on a number of factors.)


In-image text reads, " owner benefits are: no service fee for guests, most visited travel site in the world, and 66% of users return to book again. Owner costs are 15% average booking fee plus $0 subscription fee plus 0% processing fee."

An industry heavyweight offering vacation rentals and hotels — among other bookable travel needs like flights and car rentals — has the broadest audience of all the best short-term rental sites, clocking over 100 million monthly users, our Distribution team says. 

How Does Work for Owners? considers owners their partners, and it’s arguably the most direct-to-traveler channel. Like Airbnb and Vrbo, you fill out a quick profile to register, set your house rules, build a listing, and dive in. 

But with, the prices you set are the prices your guests pay. There’s no service fee aspect to how operates for consumers, 66% of whom come back.

Owners on have access to the expected 24/7 support that all the best vacation rental listing sites provide, can chat with guests through their on-site portfolio, and can report any issues or request payment from guests if an incident occurs. also offers its hosts a much wider range of commercial products than Airbnb or Vrbo (at a discount), helping maximize your marketing and booking abilities if managing your home as a DIYer.

One thing to be aware of: owners do not have the freedom to review guest inquiries and potentially deny bookings. All reservations made through this marketplace are automatically confirmed, much like they would be for a hotel stay.

How Much Does It Cost to List on charges an average 15% fee on confirmed stays in the U.S., though it may vary slightly if you’re in a different country. Our Distribution team also notes that while there’s no standard processing fee for owners with, there may be additional processing fees based on your bank or financial service.

4. Google Vacation Rental

In-image text reads, "Google owner benefits are: visibility in Google results, over 90% of search engine use, and broader, site-agnostic audience. Owner costs are not applicable — you need to partner with a property management company to pull into Google results."

A recently-launched feature, Google showcases vacation rental options on the first page of results when you make a relevant search. With Google’s near-monopoly on internet searches, having your property surface here has massive potential to attract eager travelers.

How Does Google Vacation Rental Work for Owners?

Google’s travel feature is not a DIY situation because it’s not technically a marketplace in the traditional sense. Owners must work with a management company that’s partnered with Google Vacation Rental (like Evolve) for inclusion; you cannot be featured through Airbnb, Vrbo, or 

It’s also important to note that while selecting a property management company with a Google partnership gives you access to a broader audience, it doesn’t mean you’ll automatically pop up in results. Your listing needs to be highly optimized for search terms that help Google identify it as the best content for your most qualified travelers, and professional photography is a must. (These are topics we go into detail about in our free e-book, The 6 Biggest Secrets to Earning Thousands More.)  

With that in mind, make sure the property management solutions you consider have professional photography standards and search engine optimization (SEO) experts monitoring your listing’s performance.

How Much Does It Cost to List on Google Vacation Rental?

Only good news here: since Google uses their search functionality to surface vacation rental listings rather than a dedicated platform, there’s no additional cost to owners who are featured. Instead, you need to find a property management company that can maximize your home’s potential.

5. Expedia

In-image text reads, "Expedia owner benefits are: top global travel portal in 2022, over 30 million monthly site visitors, and potential promotion across other Expedia Group brands. Owner costs are not applicable — you must work with a property management company already partnered with Expedia to guarantee promotion."

As one of the most recognizable online travel agencies in the world, Expedia makes it easy for travelers to book vacation rental and hotel stays — and even bundle accommodations alongside flight- and activity-based bookings. With over 30 million monthly site visitors, it’s one of the best short-term rental sites to get your property in front of a huge network of convenience-focused guests.

How Does Expedia Work for Owners?

Gaining access to Expedia’s growing customer base isn’t guaranteed on your own. Instead, owners must work with a management company (like Evolve) to secure a spot under Expedia’s “Stays” section, which promotes hotels and vacation rentals to ready-to-book guests.

Owners could also get some visibility on Expedia if they work directly with an Expedia Group subsidiary, like Vrbo. It’s important to note, though, that this only creates the potential to show up on Expedia’s site, given you must meet specific criteria. Instead, working with a pro company locks in guaranteed exposure for your listing on — and the possibility for promotion across additional well-known travel brands like Orbitz, Travelocity, Hotwire,, and more.

How Much Does It Cost to List on Expedia?

Because vacation rental owners cannot work directly with Expedia, the only cost you would need to account for is between you and your property management company. Make sure whoever you team up with has relationships in place to increase your listing’s exposure — and provides knowledgeable tips — that can help maximize your earning potential.

6. Hopper Homes

In-image text reads, "Hopper owner benefits are: most downloaded travel app in North America, over 100 million app users, and strategic social media presence. Owner costs are not applicable. To directly manage your listing on Hopper, you need to partner with a property manager."

Named the World’s Best Travel App in 2023, Hopper offers a fast-growing hub of top short-term rental inventory across the globe (known as Hopper Homes). 

How Does Hopper Homes Work for Owners?

Much like Google Vacation Rental, Hopper Homes is currently not directly available to owners. Instead, you need to partner with a property management company (like Evolve) to gain exposure to their 100 million users.

Hopper takes a unique marketing approach to gain those users: they heavily encourage people to download their app through social media platforms like TikTok and Instagram. Because of this, they grab the attention of mobile-first generations (like Millennials and Gen Z), putting an owner’s home in front of a customer demographic that has a high lifetime value. 

How Much Does It Cost to List on Hopper Homes?

This site isn’t entirely free marketing in the way Google Vacation Rental is, since Hopper collects a commission for listing. But that’s covered by a partnering property management company — so the only cost to owners is that management company’s standard fee. Given the access Hopper Homes can unlock, it’s important to work with someone who’s in touch with the latest marketing trends and can showcase your home on all the right vacation rental sites.

7. Homes & Villas by Marriott Bonvoy™

In-image text reads, "Homes & Villas by Marriott Bonvoy owner benefits are: trusted name in hospitality, access to over 170 million members, and high standards of guest service. Owner costs are not applicable. You can only be listed on Homes & Villas by working with a property management company and qualifying."

Marriott is already a massive name in travel, and now their trusted hospitality extends beyond traditional hotel accommodations with Homes & Villas by Marriott Bonvoy™. The booking potential for owners here is huge, since their curated collection of vacation rentals is promoted to millions of Marriott Bonvoy™ loyalty members.

How Does Homes & Villas by Marriott Bonvoy™ Work for Owners?

This is another platform that can’t be accessed by owners unless you’re working with a professional property management company that partners with Marriott Bonvoy™. 

That said, if your property management company does grant you listing access, your home can be seen by more than 170 million engaged Marriott Bonvoy™ members — an exclusive audience of frequent travelers dedicated to a brand they trust. Guests can earn and redeem their loyalty points when they book vacation rentals through Homes & Villas, which means they’re more likely to keep coming back.

All homes listed by Marriott Bonvoy™ must also meet the brand’s high standards for five-star service, so each home is hand-selected for the site based on quality and aesthetic. That makes it one of the best short-term rental sites to signal to travelers that your property is in premium condition — something that can continue to boost your reputation in the long run.     

How Much Does It Cost to List on Homes & Villas by Marriott Bonvoy™?

Just like Hopper Homes, owners listed on Homes & Villas by Marriott Bonvoy™ have costs covered by their property management company — and pay no out-of-pocket commission fees. Be sure to choose a property management company that works with the brand and knows how to help you hit the five-star standards you need to succeed.

How to Not Choose Between the Best Vacation Rental Sites for Owners

Whittling down where to list your vacation rental is often a necessary task for a DIYer — it’s just not realistic to juggle communications and bookings through all of them alone, nor is it cheap to cover the sum of their fees. 

But listing on just one site is not what’s best for your business. Getting on as many as you can means more marketing exposure, more bookings, and more revenue

In-image text reads, "Evolve owner benefits are: expert marketing and pricing strategies, visibility on all top marketplaces, and consistently earn more than competitors. Owner costs start at 10% or 15% management fee plus $0 subscription fee plus 0% processing fee."

We start by creating a professional listing in a search engine-friendly format that also comes with professional photography. Then, we put your listing on Airbnb, Vrbo,, Google Vacation Rental, Expedia, Hopper Homes, and — not to mention Homes & Villas by Marriott Bonvoy™ and a few other listing sites if your home qualifies — partnering with each to continuously adapt as the market does.

Here’s the great news: the fees typically imposed on DIY owners by listing sites are factored into our proven-to-work revenue optimization strategy, so you’ll reap the benefits without ever having to worry about those costs yourself. 

Of course, we also have experts who leverage our exclusive technology and in-house specialists who handle guest communications on your behalf — meaning Evolve works for you in a way an individual marketplace can’t, and it’s all done for an industry-low fee.

If you’re interested in learning more, hop down to the form below to see if you qualify for our services and kickstart a conversation with one of our vacation rental pros.

Vacation Rental Doesn’t Have to Be Hard

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