Reservation Rules and Policies – What you NEED to know:
Online booking has plenty of benefits, but there are a few things that just can’t be handled in bulk- Here are some things we hope you read and understand before booking any of our properties. Some, if not all of this will be in the lease you sign as well.
1-All of our properties are privately owned homes, with each having its own character and idiosyncrasies. Some have nicer linens than others, some are better ‘stocked’ than others, and some of the owners are more particular than others. All are furnished and stocked with at least the basics you will need to enjoy your stay. If there’s something that’s truly lacking, we’ll do our best to accommodate your requests, within reason. One can usually judge a property based on pricing.
2-When third parties list and/or advertise our properties, the pricing you see on their sites may not reflect the same pricing on our site. Usually, the reason is because they calculate their prices by the month to get a nightly rate. The rates you see on sites that offer “Average price of $XXX per night” or “As low as$XXX per night will NOT be the prices you pay unless you are reserving 30 nights or more. We do not ‘have to honor’ those prices, because those prices were produced by those sites to make it easier for you to read, and of course make them more appealing. We have no control of what they print on their sites.
3-There are other charges (read below about other charges- these aren’t hidden fees. Everything will be in your lease for your review BEFORE you pay.
4-Some third party sites ask you to enter your credit card info. Once entered, it shows up on your reservation as XXXX-XXXX-XXXX-0101 – we only see the last 4 digits- that’s for your protection- entering credit card info on public sites that aren’t verified is not secure- please never send this type of information in an email (to anyone). Booking engines such as Homeaway, and through our website are secure.
5-Most of our homes offer rental stays as short as two nights- Here’s how our tried and true rental period policy works:
*You may request a reservation for the following year IF you are renting the same property for the same time period and the period is at least 30 nights. That’s the first hurdle, the last hurdle?- we have to check with our owners to make sure the property will be available, and they are willing to rent it for the same terms.
*You may also request a reservation for a 30 nights or more if you’ve never stayed in that property before, but we need to check with the current tenants AND the owner.
*There are hundreds of people waiting to rent a home for one to three weeks. We open up weekly rentals in February or March depending on the property. Most of these rentals run Saturday to Saturday, but you can request other days as well. As long as it doesn’t leave holes that can’t be filled, we will do our best to accommodate you.
*We have even more people wanting to rent two to three nights. Of course, we understand you need to make your plans, airline reservations, etc. but it is very rare that we will rent less than a week unless it is within 21 days of the desired reservation date. Why? We also have renters that wait to the last minute to book a week or month. Most owners generally prefer to rent weeks and months. Holidays and other events such as Christmas, New Years, July 4th, local festivals, etc. are rented on a one week basis (we may offer less nights if it’s within 7-10 days)
*Our rental rates are meant to be simple- we show a nightly rate/ weekly rate/ monthly rate. As stated above, just because the verbiage states a nightly rate does not mean you are free to book a nightly rate. Online bookings made that do not fit the above criteria will be cancelled.
A nonrefundable reservation fee of $28.00 + NC State tax is charged on ALL reservations.
Reservations may be made from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm Monday – Friday by calling:
Our mailing address is : P.O. Box 1235, Highlands, N.C. 28741
Our Physical(and optional mailing*) address is: 401 N. Fifth Street, Highlands, N.C. 28741
*PLEASE use the physical address when forwarding mail or having packages delivered while you’re here.
Our e-mail address is : [email protected]
Our website is: www.highlandsiscalling.com
Advanced Rent Payments of 50% of the total rental amount is required to confirm your reservation and is due within 12 days of making the reservation. The Balance is due 30 days before occupancy. (If your reservation is within 9 days, you must confirm within 24 hours) Payment can be made by personal check*, travelers checks, Visa, Discover or Mastercard. A $25.00 fee will be charged for any returned checks. ALL reservations made within 30 days of occupancy require confirmation WITH reservation.(*We PREFER personal checks for payments made 30+ days before reservation lease date)
Reservation Fees: A non-refundable reservation fee of $28.00 + tax is charged on ALL reservations.
Security Deposits: Security deposits are required in addition to the rent. Refundable security deposits are returned by mail with 45 days of your departure along with a statement describing any retention. If deposits are made by credit card, a credit will be placed on your account, and you will be sent a receipt by mail or email along with account statement.
Security Deposit Alternative (SDA): You may choose to pay a non-refundable $35.00 (plus sales tax) in lieu of the security deposit-This fee prevents you from paying for accidental damages up to $1500.00. This fee does NOT cover excessive cleaning, phone charges, non-returned keys, postage to return items left by you or guests, theft, negligent, malicious, or intentional acts.
Taxes: There is a 6.75% North Carolina Sales and Use Tax levied on the rental amount, reservation fee, and cleaning (if applicable. For homes in Macon County, a 3% Macon County Occupancy Tax is charged on the RENTAL amount, for homes in Jackson County, the Occupancy Tax is 4% of the rental amount. There is NO rental tax charged for leases over 90 days.
Balance of Rent: tax, security deposit, and any other extra reservation charges are due 30 days before arrival, and must be paid or reservation will be cancelled. Reservations made within the 30 day period must be paid in full at time of reservation either by credit card, or sent next day air, priority, express, etc. to reach us at least 2 days of reservation date.
Cancellation Policy: There is an administrative fee of $100.00 for all cancellations. Tenant is responsible for the entire cost of the rental amount(but not Security Deposit, taxes, and extra reservation charges) UNLESS- we are able to re-rent the property for the entire lease period.
Agency Disclosure: The Chambers Agency acts as an agent of the Owner of the rental property (Landlord)
Lease Periods / Use of Rental Property: (1) Most homes can be reserved on a monthly basis, starting on the first day of the month and ending on the last day of the month, and on a weekly basis, starting on Saturday and ending on Saturday. Some owners prefer to rent only monthly, some only weeks, some have 2 week limits, and some rent monthly- but on a Saturday to Saturday rule. Please respect the individuality of each owner’s decision.
Again, even though our website states 2 night minimum on ALL of our listings- EACH home owner reserves the right to limit rentals to any time period they choose- our website is not designed to allow for that individualization. (2) There is a two night minimum on homes that allow short stays (less than one week rentals). A cleaning charge specific for each home will be charged on all stays of less than one week (Cleaning is INCLUDED for rentals for one week or more for most homes) We reserve the right to limit reserving short stay rentals within 14 days of arrival. (3)There are no “house parties” allowed. A house party is a group of unrelated people renting a home and/ or overcrowding a home. Property descriptions clearly state the number of occupants allowed. The only exception is a child sleeping in a crib. (4) Some of the homes listed in this brochure may be listed For Sale with our agency. We will need access to show these homes (by appointment only) Monday – Saturday 10:am – 4:pm
Advance Reservations: We do take reservations for the following year. Just let our reservation staff know. A good time to do this is when you are here Monday – Friday. Please do not wait until the day you leave, or on Saturday, as we are handling check ins and check outs. We want to be able to give you the attention you deserve. All year in advance reservations are subject to owner approval. It is our policy to try and show you the inside of homes (for month or more rentals, please) whenever possible. If occupied, we’ll give you directions to “drive by” and view the area. PLEASE DO NOT APPROACH THE HOUSE! Respect the privacy of the occupants, as you would wish your privacy while renting. If a renter reports being “bothered” by prospective tenants, we may not rent to those prospective tenants.
Smoking: We would like for all our homes to remain smoke free. Most homes have an outside area suitable for smoking, but please remember fire safety and litter rules and NEVER toss cigarette butts onto the grounds.
Please help keep Highlands Litter Free
Pets: Most homes do not allow pets. When making your reservation, please inquire about homes that may allow pets if you want to bring Fido along with you. There is a $150.00 NON-REFUNDABLE PET FEE PER PET charged for pets in homes that allow pets. Bring a pet to a home that allows pets, or does not allow pets without making prior arrangements will void your lease. Certain types of pets may never be allowed. You will be required to complete a pet policy form which becomes apart of your vacation rental lease. Highlands is a animal loving town!
Golf: All of the Country Clubs in Highlands are private and may not allow non-members to play, however there are several other golf courses nearby that are open to the public.
Sapphire National Golf Club
Hwy 64E 20 miles past Cashiers
Hwy.64E to Cashiers,then 107S about 13 miles
Hwy106 towards Dillard about 14 miles
Hwy64W to Franklin about 20 miles
Firewood: If you would like to have firewood to use while here, you must call and order at least two weeks prior to your arrival if possible. Owner’s wood is not to be used. We are not in the firewood business, but we’re happy to try to arrange for deliveries, and deliver payment to the vendors. We are not responsible beyond that. For small amounts, you may wish to buy “by the bundle” from the grocery store.
Check in time: Please do not arrive before 4:00 pm. Normal check in time is between 4:00 – 5:00 pm. Our hard working housekeepers need every minute of the 10:00-4:00 window to ensure the cleanliness of your home. Upon your arrival you will be given a “Welcome packet” including keys and directions to your rental unit. If you know you’ll be arriving after 5:00, please call our office to make arrangements.
Check out time: Please check out no later than 10:00 am. Prompt departure is necessary to prevent delay of guests checking in behind you. Upon check out, please lock all windows and doors, and bring keys to the Chambers Realty & Vacation Rentals office. If our office is not open-put keys in the key drop in the Kiosk. You will be charged for not returning keys and/or staying past check out time.
Housekeeping: All homes are furnished for light housekeeping with dishes, cookware, glassware, flatware, and linens for the number of people stated in the occupancy limit. You may wish to bring extra cleaning supplies, blankets (in the Spring or Fall), garbage bags, flashlight, radio, batteries and any special kitchen items you’re used to. Cleaning is included in the rent for all rentals of one week or more. (For rentals of 6 nights or less, a cleaning fee plus state tax is charged.) Upon departure, please either strip used beds, or leave unmade, wash all dishes or start dishwasher, remove and dispose of all trash.
Occupancy Limit: Occupancy at anytime for any reason is limited to the number of persons (including children) as described in the house description, the only exception being infants in cribs. No mobile homes, campers, or motor homes can be used at rental homes for sleeping, cooking, or purpose other than transportation.
Family groups only: We are instructed by our owners to rent to family groups only. Fraternal, sorority, student, or singles groups are asked not to apply for accommodations. House parties are prohibited. Misrepresentation, house parties, or exceeding the house limit will result in guests being asked to immediately vacate without refund.
Telephone: Most homes have phones, and you are welcome to make local calls. All long distance calls are to put on a credit card. Any call placed otherwise is subject to a $10.00 fee per billing cycle plus the cost of the call.
Fax/Printer: You are welcome to send or receive fax messages from our office and/or have the use of our copier. There is a charge of $.25 for each page.
Mail/Packages: If you would like to FORWARD your mail to our office for delivery while in Highlands, please use our street address:
401 N. Fifth Street Highlands, NC 28741
Fireplace/Grilling: Housekeeping is instructed NOT to clean fireplaces between guests due to the possibility of live ashes. Fires actually start better with ashes in the fireplace. If you feel the need to dispose of ashes, make sure the ashes are several days old, and they are cold. If you use an owner’s grill, make sure you clean it afterwards. Never use charcoal in a gas grill – if you don’t know the difference- please call us!
Items left behind: Neither Owner nor Agent are responsible for items left at the property by Guests. Please be sure to double check for all personal items before departure. A minimum $10.00 handling fee plus postage will be charged to return by mail any items left in property. Please call us as soon as you realize you’ve left something behind!
Maintenance/Refunds: All equipment in each unit should be in working order. Please report any inoperative equipment to our office promptly. We will make every effort to have repairs made as soon as possible. Owner & Agent shall have the right to inspect & make repairs during the rental period. Guests shall be charged for any unnecessary maintenance calls. No reduction of rent, rebate, or refund will be issued for any mechanical failure of air conditioning, major or minor appliance, public utility interruptions, guest dissatisfaction, or for errors in this brochure, web site, rental agreement, including changes made by owner in bedding, furnishings, equipment, etc. No refunds for inclement weather.
Errors: Descriptions, rates, and property amenities listed here and/or the rental agreement are subject to change without notice. Omissions, additions, or errors are unintended, and we will try our best to ensure you have the correct info.
Unforeseen Circumstances: If your property becomes unavailable, Chambers Realty & Vacation Rentals reserves the right to move you to a comparable property. Every effort will be made to place you in a property with a comparable location, accommodates the same number of persons in your party, and is within the same price range; however, Agent cannot guarantee availability /comparability of other properties. Owner and Agent are not liable for an acts of God (nature) that would prohibit limit the use of property.
Self Catering: Every rental unit is privately owned and reflects the owner’s personal style and tastes. Our homes are considered to be self- catering – treat it as your own and replace items that you use.
All Rights Reserved: No part of the brochure, or website can be reproduced in any form or by any means without written permission.
Agency Disclosure: Unless otherwise notified by written agreement, Chambers Realty & Vacation Rentals acts as an agent for the Owner/Landlord in all transactions. Some of our rental home owners are licensed real estate agents/brokers.