Outer Banks Blogs

Earth Day and The "Green Village"

Village Realty Blog - Tue, 04/21/2009 - 10:35



                          

Wednesday, April 22 is Earth Day.

From Wikipedia:

"Earth Day, celebrated April 22, is a day designed to inspire awareness and appreciation for the Earth's environment. It is held annually during both spring in the northern hemisphere and autumn in the southern hemisphere. It was founded by U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson as an environmental teach-in in 1970 and is celebrated in many countries every year."

I always feel guilty because I know I am not doing all I could to "go green".  Yes, I turn off the water when I am brushing my teeth, I take short showers and I turn off the lights when no one is in the room. But I don't recycle at  home.

At work, it is another story.  We are full on Green.

  • Recycle soft drink cans
  • No paper brochure, all electronic
  • Leases are signed electronically online OR can be emailed to guests
  • We recycle office paper
  • Pick up trash on Earth Day
  • Turn off computers at night
  • Re use file folders
  • Combine trips to other offices
  • No paper confirmations sent (unless guest does not have email)
  • Email confirmations, payment receipts, etc are sent instead of snail mail
  • Cleaning products are eco friendly
  • Paper products in our office and our homes are recycled
  • We use glassware and dishes in our kitchen--not paper cups or plates

In honor of Earth Day tomorrow we are donating $5.00 for any reservation that is made on that day, whether by phone or online. Our donation will go to the Nature Conservancy to benefit the Nags Head Woods Ecological Preserve. 

So if you are thinking about booking a home this week, why not do it Wednesday and do your part to help Save the Earth.

Thanks for reading.
Until Next Time
Your OBX Blogger


Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Hold It ... Really

Village Realty Blog - Wed, 04/15/2009 - 09:01
Once again we have used our powers for good ... we now let guests Hold a vacation home they find online.  The hold is for 24 hours and gives them time to contact cousin Joey and Aunt Harriet to make sure everyone is still coming to the beach, show them the house  (using our online brochure or by sending them a link to the house using EMail a Friend) and get the "Who Pays What" details worked out.

FYI we do allow holds for guests who phone in too ... same rules apply. "Hold It" seems to be very popular ... from the stats I have seen on this.  

We still call each guest who books online to go over any questions they may have and make sure they understand when their first rental payment is due, when the balance is due and so on.

Our powers are working overtime lately because we also have two new applications that will benefit guests who have already made their reservacations.

Guest Web allows a guest to (a) see their lease and all terms of the agreement on line, anytime (b) make a payment online, anytime (c) check their balance due (d) contact us in a secure manner (you know, like the banks do .... they never email you to give you the information ... they email you to ask you to log into your account and then you check your emails there).  Guests can either enter their credit card information ... again, all secure ....or print out a coupon to send in with their check. Or or course, they can still call us. Since the lease is accepted either at time of booking online or when a guest goes to the GuestWeb site ... we are also saving paper!  Village has been "going green" for some time now and this is just one  more step. And last but not least, this is guest friendly and also saves our staff a lot of time.

RezMail Pro has automated our email contact with guests, giving us more time to answer phone calls, questions and concerns and provide better customer service.   Guests will get an email when they book a home (whether onine or by phone, etc), when payments are due and five days before they check in. That email gives them directions and information they will need once they get here.

Then, emails go out to our guests after they leave thanking them for staying with us and asking them to complete an online survey. Finally, six months later the final email goes out asking them to come back!

More "greening" of our reservation processes. Emails instead of mail (although we do call or snail mail guests who do not use email) saves time and paper and emails are more likely to get read quickly as opposed to mail that you throw on the counter and open later.

More good stuff on the way.

Hope you are having a good week and making plans to visit the OBX soon.

Until Next Time
Your OBX Blogger

Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Quilters OBX

Village Realty Blog - Fri, 04/10/2009 - 13:40
Cindy Mattingly in our Accounting Department has been quilting since the early 1990s. Cindy collects fabrics that she buys at quilt shows, online or at shops in the course of her travels. She has made lap-size quilts for every family member and needed to find another outlet for her quilting “habit.” In 2005, after adopting her black Lab, Buster, from HART (Homeless Animal Rescue Team) in Fairfax Station, VA, Cindy began donating quilts to HART for their annual silent auction fundraising event. In 2006, Cindy began making and donating quilts every year to the March of Dimes Signature Chefs silent auctions. She recently attended a meeting at the invitation of local animal rescue groups, including the Dare County SPCA, which are in the planning stages of a fundraising event for fall of 2009. Once again, Cindy will create her beautiful quilts and donate them so that others may benefit.

I have seen the quilts she has donated to the March of Dimes fund raisers and they are simply beautiful. Perfect for a baby gift or new home gift or any time at all. I wish I had the patience to do this type of craft but since I almost failed Home Ec in high school I am pretty sure that is not in the cards for me.

There is something so comfortable about a quilt, very welcoming and homey. I love them!

We have many talented people who work with us and will tell you more about them in future posts.

Here is wishing all of you a safe and happy holiday. The beach is coming alive again with visitors and they are very welcome back!

Until Next Time
Your OBX Blogger

Categories: Outer Banks Blogs

Mixed Bag

Village Realty Blog - Thu, 04/09/2009 - 11:15

Been a busy week ... as always.  Lots to talk about so here we go ...


Corolla Wild Horses

Karen Gregory, one of our seasoned vacation specialists in the Corolla office is always one who is willing to help out those in need.

Not only is she willing to drop off towels for a guest on her way home, helping out her fellow co-workers is very common. During the winter she has also been known to stop by houses on her way home where a guest may be arriving late to turn on the outside light for them. In addition she is also a volunteer with the Carova Volunteer Fire Department, the Corolla Wild Horse Fund, and a volunteer for the Network of Endangered Sea Turtles (NEST).

Last week while on the way to work, we received a call that she was going to be late. It turned out that she was the first one on the scene when she spotted a stallion that appeared to be severely injured near the ramp to the Carova Fire Station. Many thanks were extended from the director of the Corolla Wild Horse Fund to Karen who took the time to set up stakes and yellow tape to keep people back and call for help. Unfortunately it appeared that the horse may have been hit by a vehicle in the previous night’s fog, and had to be euthanized because of the extent of the injuries.

In a small community such as Corolla and Carova, it's the dedication and efforts of the many locals that make living in a small town such a wonderful place.

We all appreciate Karen’s hard work in the Corolla office as well.

Great Vacation Giveaway 2009

The Great Vacation Giveaway has begun! For the third year in a row Village and OBX Connection are co-sponsoring this annual Sweepstakes.   This year the property is a luxurious, brand new condo in Kill Devil Hills. 

Some of the Amenities at Croatan Surf Club

Large, Oceanfront Pool
Indoor Heated Pool with Fireplace and Translucent Roof
In ground spa
“Spray Ground” for kids
Dune top Gazebo
Boardwalk
Elevators

No purchase necessary to win. You will need to go to www.OBXConnection.com  and register. Please read the sweepstakes rules. The winner will be announced after July 8, 2009. Date of stay is the week of August 22-29, 2009.

Hold It

We now allow guests to "Hold" a home for 24  hours; either by phone or online. We just launched the online capability a few weeks ago and have had a great response from our home owners and our guests.   Since we can email leases or  have a guest accept the lease online, hold its can be converted into confirmed bookings quickly once we have a payment.  Guest Friendly!

Are You Ready?

For taxes? I am not ...filed an extension.
For Easter? Me either
For Guests to come back to the beach? YES!

Speaking of Easter ... the Easter Bunny left a nice surprise for the Web Geeks ....a basket filled with goodies. Gourmet crackers and jelly beans, chocolate, cheese straws, yum.  The Easter Bunny has not disclosed her identity yet but we have a pretty good idea who it is. It has to be a woman ... we do know that. She has to be generous ... kind and caring.  I think her initials are Maggie but until she fesses up I cannot be sure.

Until Next Time
Your OBX Bloggers






Categories: Outer Banks Blogs
Syndicate content