Property Assistant

Overview

Welcome to the New Ciirus Property Assistant.

The Property Wizard has been re-written and the new version is known as the Property Assistant. Now a property can be set up from start to finish using one set of screens. Progress bars have been added and a feature that allows the user to revisit and edit the property setup page. You can view the progress for each property, under the property chooser dropdown menu. It will display a percentage of how much information has been completed. There is also a progress bar, located at the bottom left within the Property assistant itself.
Should you require further assistance for the screens, click the 🛈 button at the bottom of each page in the Property Assistant itself. It will link to a video for that section and will show how it works in more detail.

The video below will show the new assistant features.  All the screens within the property Assistant can also be accessed and from various areas of the software. When edited, the updated information is displayed from within the Property Assistant.

For inputting key information, it’s recommended using the Property Assistant. For advanced setup or configuration, view the videos and tutorials below.

Accessing the Property Assistant

The Add New Property Assistant provides a simple way to guide users through configuring new owners and properties. The Assistant takes the complex operation of setting up properties and breaks it into a series of simple steps. At each point in the Assistant, suggestions and helpful tips are provided when hovering over a field.

 

To access this screen, go to Owners & Homes > Add New Property

  1. If it is an existing owner, check ‘Use this owner
  2. Using the 'Drop Down Chooser', Select the Owner
  3. If it is a new owner, check the “Create a new owner’ tickbox

Owner Portal Details:

Enter the owners details, including full name, email address, and create the username and password for the Owner’s portal.

Owner Portal Permissions & Access:

  1. Website & Marketing: This feature will allow the owner to build a free website to market to their friends and family.
  2. Owners & Homes: This feature will allow the owner to view finalized monthly statements, annual statements, Work Orders, and brief property details.
  3. Quotes Manager: This feature will allow the owner to create rates to display on the owner website. Please note that the Owner Portal Rates and the Rate Sets in created in the system are non -associated.
  4. Allow owner to see amount due to owner against bookings, if enabled, owners can view the net amount due to them on a per booking basis. The net amount is after taxes, commissions, and fees.

Other Details:

Allow owner to see owner amount against the booking? (This overrides the default amount set in General

New Property Name:

  1. Enter Property Name: This is how the property name appears in internal system
  2. Use existing property as a template? If there is a similar property in the system, use existing template as a template: When using existing property as a template, the system will copy and populate the features, descriptions, images, rates, and booking settings. This information can be overridden or updated if needed.  

Basic Property Details:

  1. Enter number of bedrooms, bathrooms, and sleeps.
  2. Each step in the Property Assistant includes a checkbox in the lower right. Check the box to complete the step. Specifying whether a step is complete or incomplete is important as this will allow the system to indicate what steps are complete or incomplete, as well as, update the Property Setup Status accordingly.
  3. Click Next to Proceed to the next step

Property Location:

  1. Enter the property address. Once the property address is entered
  2. Click on Auto for Google Maps to automatically populate the GPS coordinate codes
  3. Specify the property type
  4. Specify the Country, State, City, and Location using the drop down menus

Complete all fields to successfully connect this property to the Channel Manager platforms.

Property Location (Video Tutorial Below)

Access Codes:

Specify various Access Codes for the property. These codes can reflect on the arrival instructions sent to the owners and guests.

Access Codes (Video Tutorial Below)

Inventory:

For security and insurance purposes, there is the option to create an inventory checklist for each property.

  1. To add individual inventory items, check the Edit Inventory checkbox to enable this feature.
  2. Click “Add New.” Enter the item description, for example: “A Flat-Screen TV in the Living Room,” click OK
  3. In MC comments, enter comments such as the serial number.  
  4. To delete an item from the inventory check list, select the item and click delete.

Inventory (Video Tutorial Below)

Owner Accounting

System Users may or may not provide individual owner statements. If monthly statements are provided, enable the owner accounting module for each applicable property.

  1. Once Enabled, specify the owner account settings
  2. Using the drop down menu, specify the correct Tax Location for the system to calculate and apply taxes to bookings
  3. Management Companies may or may not file booking taxes on behalf of property owners. If you submit taxes on behalf of this owner, check this box
  4. A vacation rental may or may not have Tax and License identification numbers, if they do, enter the identification numbers
  5. Enter a Housekeeping Fee that may apply to the owner’s statement
  6. To Override default MC Commission %, enter a commission for system to auto apply to all reservations placed in this room
  7. If Owner Booking Fees apply, check this box. An owner booking fee can be charged to the owner if the owner has placed a reservation for the Management Company to service
  8. Under Owner Settings, enter the owners Tax ID
  9. The system can process eChecks for rental proceeds due to the owner. If applicable, enter who the echeck is payment to as well as the owners bank account details

Owner Accounting (Video Tutorial Below)

Owner Bills

  1. If utilities or bills are paid on behalf of this owner, Enable this feature
  2. Once enabled, Press Add
  3. Specify Category
  4. Enter Account Number as the Item
  5. Enter the vendor or utility account number under Reference / Value
  6. Under Contact, specify Vendor
  7. Press OK
  8. Press Set as Default in order to process and pay bills

Owner Bills (Video Tutorial Below)

Short Stays, Housekeeping, Commission Settings

These settings are supported by Channel Managers as well as the Website; therefore, it is essential to configure.

This will help eliminate technical errors as well as financial discrepancies.

 

  1. (Minimum Nights Stay requirement) This can be overridden on a per season basis when creating rates.
  2. (Booking Fee) The booking fee is an additional fee charged to the guest. If applicable, it can be a fixed amount or a percentage based off the rental rate excluding tax
  3. (Discount) The discount is calculated on the base rental rate before tax and before any agent discount or mark-ups. The discount will not be applied to the cost of any mandatory or optional extras
  4. (House Keeping Fee) The cleaning fee is an additional fee charged to the guest. Enable this setting by clicking in this box
  5. Enter the cleaning fee amount for this property
  6. If the booking is 5 days or less, the system will automatically apply this fee to the reservation. If you charge a cleaning fee to all reservations regardless of how many nights, enter 5000 for the amount of days
  7. (House Keeping Fee Split) is the percentage of Housekeeping Fee Due to the Management Company. This is a Global Setting that will apply to all properties. Typically, Management Companies retain 100% to provide payment to respective cleaners and vendors.
  8. (Short Stays) These settings only apply if weekly rates are being created. It determines how to divide a weekly rate if it is under a certain number of days.
  9. (Saved Quotes) When a user saves a quote in the system, the number entered is the amount of days that the quote is valid for. Once the quote expires, the quote details will be saved into the quote archive for future reference.

Short Stays / Housekeeping / Commission Settings  (Video Tutorial Below)

Down Payment / Balance / Security Deposit

  1. (Balance Payment) How many weeks prior to the arrival date must the guest submit their remaining balance. Enter the number of weeks prior to the arrival date that the balance is due for a booking. If 0 is entered, the grand total will be due at the time the reservation is created
  2. (Down Payment Amount) If the booking is created prior to the balance due period, the system can calculate and apply a down payment to confirm the reservation
  3. (Fix Down Payment per Booking) - Enter a fixed amount to charge to the guest as a down payment
  4. Specific amount per week, or part of the week booked)- For Example: if $100 is entered and the property was booked for four weeks, then the system will calculate $400 as the down payment. $100 times 4 weeks
  5. (Percentage of Quoted Price) - Enter a percentage either based off the base rental amount or based on the grand total of the reservation
  6. (First Night Rent) - This is the grand total divided by number of night to calculate the first night rent as the down payment

Down-Payment / Balance / Security Deposit (Video Tutorial Below)

Terms & Online Booking Settings

  1. (Settings and Terms) Allow Quotes Within the Ciirus Property Manager.” Checking this button allows the system to include the selected property when running a quote in the system
  2. Specify the Terms and Conditions template that applies to the property. To create a Terms and Conditions template, click on Edit Terms Button
  3. Click Add to create a template
  4. Enter the Terms & Conditions name or title
  5. In the white panel, enter terms and conditions. This can be manually entered or copy and pasted from another source such as “Word
  6. Copy and paste the terms and conditions from the white panel to the Plain Text Settings panels. This is important, as the Plain Text terms and conditions are pushed over to the Channel Partner listing pages.
  7. Click OK to exit and save
  8. Once the terms and conditions template is created, it is ready to be applied to a property or multiple properties. To apply the terms and conditions template, use the drop-down chooser
  9. (Allow Quotes and Online Bookings) - Enable or disable online bookings. If disabled, no Website or Channel Partners bookings can be created.
  10. (Days to Enforce Gap Between Bookings)-  Enter the number of days allowed between outgoing and incoming guests, this can eliminate back-to-back reservations.
  11. Minimum Days Between Booking and Arrival- Enter the number of days allowed between the date the booking was created and the arrival date. This is a booking fence which can eliminate last-minute reservations. For example: Guest books online and would like to arrive to the property on the same day of booking. If 2 is entered as the minimum, the system will not allow this and the guest must arrive 2 days later
  12. (Allow Guests to Specify Lockbox Code) - Lock box codes can be set in one of three ways. At the property level, reservation level, or the system can allow the guest to customize their own lockbox code. This screen refers to the third option. Tick this box to allow the guest to create their own customized door code.
  13. This Slider will determine the number of required digits

Terms / Quotes / Booking Settings (Video Tutorial Below)

Pool Heat Settings

  1. (Pool Heating) - If your area of business does not offer or provide Pool Heat services to your guests, please contact the CiiRUS Technical Support Team to remove these settings from your system and proceed to the next step
  2. (Charge to Guest) - If the selected property has a pool and the pool heat is chargeable to the guest, this screen shows how to set up Pool Heat costs to apply to a quote or reservation. Is Pool Heat charged Weekly? if so, leave this box ticked and enter the weekly amount. If pool heat is charged Daily, untick and enter the daily amount.
  3. (Property Manager Amount) - Similar to the Housekeeping Fee, this determines if either the Owner or the Management Company retains the pool heating fee.

 

Pool Heat Settings (Video Tutorial Below)

Property Title / Bullet Points

Enter Property Descriptions to appear on the Channel Manager and Website Listing Pages.

The Property Description page is the core of online marketing. The descriptions area in the system gives full control over content and customization for the online property listings.

  1. Start by entering the Headline. If connecting to Channel Partners, the headline must be a minimum of 20 characters. For example, “Luxury 2 Bed Condo, 3 Blocks From Central Park!”
  2. The Property Title is the marketing name that will reflect on the listing pages. For example, “Chic Central Park Apartment”
  3. The Bullet Points are the 5 outstanding features for the selected property. These bullet points will reflect the Website Search Page
  4. Enter the Plain Text Description, which is a full description of the property and must be a minimum of 400 characters to successfully connect to the Channel Partner sites
  5. Enter the Location Description

Titles & Bullets Points (Video Tutorial Below)

Images

The image gallery is where photos of a property can be stored and displayed on the property listing pages. This gallery only accepts .JPG or .PNG type images.

  1. To add images, open the image folder by clicking on “Select.”
  2. Select each image
  3. Click Open. Multiple images can be selected at once however, depending on the size of each image, it may take longer to upload. It is recommended that you load the images in small batches or one at a time.
  1. After uploading images, all images for the selected property will appear here in this  panel.
  2. The order of images can be changed by dragging and dropping the image.

The title of the image can be updated by selecting the image and clicking on Description.

To remove images simply select them and  click Delete.

Images (Video Tutorial Below)

Rate Sets (Adding a Rate Set)

Date Bands, Seasons, and Rates make up a Rate Set.

A Rate Set can be property specific or based on a property type. For example, a rate set can be created for a three-bedroom standard property which can be assigned to all three bedroom standard properties in the system. These properties would share the same date bands and rates.

Another Example: Individual rate sets can be created for each property, therefore, each property can have its own date bands and rates.

  1. To create a new Rate Set, click on the “Add/ Edit Rate Sets” button and click on “New Set”. Enter the name of this new set. Typically, management companies enter the name of the property, or the property type. For example, 3-bedroom standard.
  2. click on “New Set”. Enter the Name of this new set. Typically, management companies enter the name of the property, or the property type. For example, 3-bedroom standard.
  3. Select to enter Daily, Weekly, or Monthly rates
  4. Specify the Currency
  5. Click Add

Rate Sets (Adding a Date Band)

  1. Click on the “Add Date Band” button,
  2. Enter the “Date From,” and “To Date” by clicking on the drop down menus.
  3. Enter the Daily Rate, Weekly Rate and/or Monthly Rate.
  4. There is the option to enter the “Daily Floor Rate,” which is the wholesale or discounted rate available to your travel agents or tour operators. Instead of creating two different rate sets for one property, one with retail rates and one with discounted rates, both retail and wholesale rates can be consolidated into one rate set.
  5. Enter the Minimum Night requirement for this date band or season
  6. click “Add"

Rate Sets (Overriding Exsisting Data)

Once a Rate Band has been added, a new row will appear, to override existing data, click on each column and enter the new criteria. Repeat the same process for new date bands. It is recommended to enter rates for at least two years in advance. The system cannot quote for a future date if only a few months have been assigned a value, so go ahead and repeat the same process.  

Once up to 18 months is entered, click the close button and press Yes to Update the Assigned Rateset.  

Advanced Rate Sets (Video Tutorial Below)

Website Settings

Once the Basic Details, Location, Reservation Settings (Down payment, balance, terms, quote / booking settings), Title / Bullet Points, Images, and Rates have been applied and set to complete, the Property Listing is ready to go live on the website.

  1. To activate this property on the website, check “Show property on website?”
  2. Allow the guest to create quotes, view the rates, and availability calendar.
  3. Via the Owner Portal, the owner can login to update or modify the property listing. If allowed, check the “Can the owner edit web property details?” tickbox.