Evolve is one of the most popular names in the US vacation rental management industry. In this article, we’ll review Evolve rental management in order to help property owners decide if this is a good choice for the needs of their real estate investment. In specific, we’ll look at what Evolve property management is, how it works, what the advantages and disadvantages are, what available alternatives there are, and what existing customers think about the company.
What Is Evolve Property Management?
Evolve is one of the largest names in the short term rental market in the US. The company was established in 2011 with the aim of solving the problems of stressed owners, overpriced property management, and guests’ need for better standards and support. The company is headquartered in Denver, CO.
Over the course of the past 13 years, Evolve built a position as one of the largest and leading vacation rental management companies. Currently, the company manages over 30,000 short term rentals (owned by investors) in more than 750 markets in North America, with a strong focus on US locations.
It is important to note that Evolve vacation rental management takes care of a lot of the aspects of managing a short term rental, but this is not a full-service Airbnb manager. While Evolve concentrates heavily on the automation of property management, there are some tasks that are still left for the owner to take care of.
How Evolve Rental Management Works
Next, in our Evolve review, we’ll take a look at how the company works, what services it provides to owners, and what fees it charges.
Services Offered by Evolve
Evolve short term rental management covers the following services:
- Vacation rental listing: Evolve lists properties on the company website, Airbnb, Vrbo, Booking.com, Expedia, Google, Hopper, and Homes & Villas by Marriott Convoy.
- Listing marketing
- Managing bookings
- Communicating with guests
- Optimizing revenue
- Collecting and remitting state, county, and local sales and lodging taxes (in certain locations)
- Dynamic pricing through proprietary Smart Rates technology. The Evolve technology adjusts daily rates in a way that maximizes the numbers of bookings, while the Mashvisor Airbnb smart pricing tool focuses on optimizing revenue and return on investment.
- Help in finding local contractors for tasks like cleaning, restocking, and maintaining vacation rentals
- Additional Airbnb insurance
You can learn more about the Mashvisor Airbnb Dynamic Pricing tool here.
The above-listed services significantly facilitate property management, but there are still some things left to owners, like:
- Getting necessary permits and licenses to run an Airbnb business
- Furnishing properties
- Finding and coordinating on-the-ground staff
- Property maintenance and repairs
- Reporting property and income tax
Evolve Fee Structure and Pricing
What makes Evolve stand out from most competitors is the clear pricing structure and the affordable fees. Evolve property management fees are equivalent to 10% of the real estate rental income that an investor makes. The fee is charged on completed bookings and includes the nightly rate plus all additional fees such as cleaning fees and pet fees but excludes taxes.
Compared to the average Airbnb management fee in the US market, 10% is relatively low. However, property owners should keep in mind that Evolve covers fewer services than some competitors.
Evolve Rental Property Listing and Marketing Strategies
As mentioned above, Evolve lists short term rentals on multiple platforms in addition to its own website. Moreover, the company uses its extensive experience in the industry to optimize listings for Airbnb SEO and for ranking on other websites. This aims to maximize exposure and boost the Airbnb occupancy rate for properties under their management.
In addition, Evolve applies SmartRates technology for dynamic pricing, which is at the core of successful short term rental management. However, similar to other competitors, the company focuses on boosting bookings (or the occupancy rate) rather than increasing rental income and ROI. This might lead to suboptimal results for Airbnb hosts.
Benefits of Evolve Property Management for Rental Owners
The Evolve property management services bring many important advantages to real estate investors.
We’ve outlined the main ones below.
Professional Vacation Rental Property Management
First and foremost, owners who decide to co cost Airbnb properties together with Evolve benefit from access to professional services. The Evolve team has long experience in the hospitality industry in general and the short term rental business in specific, so they know how to manage properties and how to deal with guests.
As a result of professional property management, you can expect a boost in performance without having to do extra work yourself.
Maximizing Rental Income
Second, the professional management of your short term rental is expected to increase the Airbnb income which you get. The Evolve team has expertise in how to list on Airbnb and other vacation rental platforms to attract more bookings. Moreover, they know how to work with guests to generate more positive Airbnb reviews.
While you would need to pay a 10% fee, your overall return on investment should still go up due to the expected improvement in the performance of your vacation rental.
Passive Short Term Rental Property Investing
Third, hiring Evolve property management services eliminates the need to deal with many aspects of owning and renting out vacation homes. Although Evolve does not cover all tasks within Airbnb management, you will be significantly closer to earning passive income from your investments. Furthermore, you can start making money from short term rentals with virtually no knowledge of how to run an Airbnb.
As long as you build a good team of local vendors to manage cleaning and restocking, your rental income can be fully passive.
Downsides of Evolve Rental Property Management
Despite the many benefits of working with Evolve, there are some disadvantages that property owners need to take into consideration too.
The most significant ones include:
Sharing the Profit
When you hire a professional Airbnb manager like Evolve, you need to pay them a property management fee, which means that you’ll be splitting the rental income with someone else. Before you decide to work with Evolve, you need to conduct diligent rental property analysis to calculate how their 10% fee will affect your bottom line. Since their services are expected to boost the performance of your Airbnb listing, it might be that your cash flow and ROI will actually go up.
Lack of Full-Service Short Term Rental Property Management Options
Unlike other Airbnb management companies, Evolve does not provide all services that are needed to run a short term rental business. Owners still need to take care of things like getting the property ready before renting, cleaning, restocking, maintaining, repairing, and filing taxes.
Depending on your location and time availability, you will need to either spend some of your own time doing these tasks or hire more support. Once again, it’s important to check how this will affect your return through investment property analysis.
Limited Market Coverage
Evolve services are available in many of the best short term rental markets, but they are not present in absolutely all US cities and towns. So, it might be that the company does not operate where your real estate investment property is located.
Comparing Evolve with Other Rental Management Options
When considering whether to hire Evolve rental management or not, it’s key to factor in other alternatives and how they compare to the company in terms of services, fees, and markets.
Following are the top Evolve competitors that might – or might not – be a better fit for your specific needs:
Evolve vs Vacasa
The main Evolve alternative in the US vacation rental industry is Vacasa. This is the biggest short term rental property management company in the US. As such, they cover more locations than Evolve, which can be both positive (due to more experience and scale) and negative (because of less attention to each listing and less personable attitude to owners and guests).
Vacasa offers full-service property management, so investors need to be less involved with their rental. Vacasa services are significantly more expensive than Evolve’s though the company does not specify the exact fees on their website. Vacasa charges additional fees for some services that are not included in the core package.
Overall, Vacasa might be a good fit for investors looking to work with a large company and who are interested in full-service management.
Evolve vs Casago
Another Evolve competitor is Casago. Unlike Evolve and Vacasa, they manage furnished long term rentals, unfurnished long term rentals, corporate housing, single family homes, and vacation rentals. They are present in relatively few markets, so they might not work out for owners investing outside those locations.
Casago covers more services than Evolve including check-ins and check-outs, cleaning, inspections, and maintenance. Correspondingly, they charge a higher fee of 18% of rental income, but it might be worth it for the extra services.
Casago could be a good solution for investors with mixed portfolios including both short term and long term rental properties.
Evolve vs SkyRun
As an alternative to Evolve, SkyRun is a smaller vacation rental management company that is present in a few dozen US markets in multiple states. As long as investors own a vacation rental in one of those markets, they can benefit from more devoted and personalized services and attitude than with Evolve and other competitors.
SkyRun provides the majority of services you need to make passive income from short term rentals. Properties are listed on all the main short term rental platforms and fully taken care of by staff with experience in hospitality. SkyRun property management fees start at 15% and depend on a number of factors.
SkyRun could work out well for owners who’d like to work with a smaller property manager due to the related advantages.
Evolve vs AvantStay
AvantStay is yet another Evolve competitor that works in a few US markets and manages a few hundred properties. Unlike other alternatives, they specialize in group travel and manage properties with 4 or more bedrooms only.
AvantStay offers full-service vacation rental management, starting from furnishing the property which is not something that all Airbnb managers offer. The company does not disclose its management fees on their website, so investors need to get in touch and ask for a quote.
AvantStay might be a good solution for investors with big properties that cater to groups rather than individuals.
Evolve vs Awning
Awning is an alternative to Evolve that provides both long term and short term rental property management across the US market. As a relatively new company, they are likely to work with a limited number of rentals, which has pros and cons, as discussed above.
Awning services cover most of the needs of vacation rentals including furnishing, insurance, linen service, and others. The company can help owners take care of the majority of the items on an Airbnb host checklist.
All in all, Awning can be a good choice for investors whose properties are located in markets not covered by other companies.
Real Estate Investor Experiences with Evolve Rental Management
Finally, before making a decision in favor of or against Evolve property management, short term rental property investors should take into account what other hosts and guests think about the services provided by the company.
Here are online Evolve reviews:
- Trustpilot: 4.0 stars from 4,320 reviews
- BBB: 4.23 stars from 1,229 reviews
- Sitejabber: 3.83 stars from 439 reviews
The Evolve reviews above show that the company has a strong reputation among investors and guests.
Positive reviews highlight the good communication, the complete responses to all questions, the covering of necessary repairs due to bad guests, and the attentive customer support team.
Negative reviews talk about poor property management, lack of sufficient services, refusals to address property damages by guests, bad customer service, and unexpected cancellation fees.
Is Evolve Rental Management Worth It for Investors?
As a leader in the market, Evolve property management could be a good solution for short term rental owners who need help in automating and optimizing the management of their properties. The company has a strong history and reputation as well as many positive reviews by hosts and guests. However, this is not the perfect choice for those who need full-service management to gain passive income. Such investors can check out one of the Evolve alternatives that offer more comprehensive services.
If you’d like to boost your vacation rental income and ROI, sign up for the Mashvisor Airbnb Dynamic Pricing tool.