I've heard a lot of criticisms about rental agencies operating in Rehoboth Beach, DE. So here's what I hope are some helpful bits of advice to potential renters:
1. Always tour cottages you are thinking of renting, or, at the very least, get a recommendation from a friend who has stayed in the rental, and who knows your standards. This is an absolute MUST. Anyone who whines about having a bad experience who didn't first inspect the property, has NO right to complain if something is wrong with the rental.
2. Agencies will either give you keys to tour a property, or provide an agent to accompany you on a tour of the cottage. If you have a preference (an unaccompanied showing or not), let the agency know that, and schedule a day to tour 3-4 cottage you are interested in. Do not schedule tours for check-in/out days, as these are very busy days for agencies.
3. If there is something wrong with the cottage (meaning it is not up to the same standards as on the day you toured it), bring the problem to the attention of the renting agency immediately. You have a right to have your grievance heard. More importantly, the agency acts on the authority of the owner, who gives the agency the the right to make improvements on their behalf, as deemed necessary. If there is a broken bed, the agency will replace it and charge the owner. Given the opportunity to do what's right, a good business that cares about it's reputation, will act in the best interest sof its customers. However, a business cannot make you happy unless you speak up.
4. Read the fine print on the rental document--and understand it. If there is a "sight unseen" clause, make sure you understand your rights, especially if you are one of those people who rent without touring or without getting a recommendation.
5. Keep the cottage clean for the next person. Clean messes you make, fix or replace anything you break. Don't leave it for the owner of the next person renting to take care of it.
6. As in home buying, when renting, it's all about location, location, location! There are many rental agencies that have a ton of homes and cottages for rent, some closer to the beach, some not. The key to knowing which agency to choose is knowing the neighborhoods where they have most of their rentals. If you don't mind driving everywhere, than it probably isn't an issue. But if you want to be able to walk to the main attractions and feel safe doing so, then you will need to rent with an agency that has the most homes in the areas where you'd like to be, so that you will have a lot of options from which to choose. I have always rented from Jack Lings, and have heard from several people on here that Long & Foster has some nice homes that are well-kept; thou many of their homes are further back from the beach and nicer areas.
I'd be interested to hear from anyone having experiences with other rental agencies operating in Rehoboth Beach.