[Photo by Lara Gale / Moab Sun News]

The age of the Internet has given couch surfing a face lift.

Today, typing “Moab Rental” into a Google search bar brings up options for everything from studio apartments priced in the double digits, to more expensive properties with multiple bedrooms, bathrooms and other amenities on sites like Airbnb, Home Away, Expedia, Travelocity and TripAdvisor.

With hundreds of properties in its charge, Moab Property Management is on the other end of the line for many of the travelers who book their lodgings on these sites. In the last several years, as increased tourism has expanded the need for beds in town, more homeowners have recognized the value of renting their property to help fill the need, and have benefited in turn by offsetting some of the costs of home ownership, Moab Property Management General Manager Dustin Frandsen said.

“More people are recognizing that property management makes sense,” he said. “More and more owners are coming to us because they’ve discovered they love Moab and want to live here eventually, but can’t afford a vacation property. We work hard to make sure they can make the numbers work by keeping their property booked when they’re not there.”

Moab Property Management has the rental stock and administrative support to keep its clients’ properties listed on every high-traffic, international lodging website, which is a great boon for individual homeowners whose access to such rental pools is limited to innovative but less broadly popular sites like Airbnb, he said.

For her eight years as a Moab property owner, Wendy Miller has worked with Moab Property Management to care for her investment, and she is always happy to refer people to the company, she said.

“They provide excellent service in terms of reservations, cleaning services and maintenance,” she said. “They are flexible and always invite input into how their services can improve. MPM is a model of business excellence in Moab.”

Renting from a professional property management company has benefits for renters, as well, said Michael Yates, who has arranged long-term rentals for himself and his wife four times in the last several years through Moab Property Management. He comes back because of the company’s customer service, affordability and quality of property choices, and particularly because of his good relationship with Frandsen.

Renting in the cold off-season, Yates and his wife encountered a broken furnace one year near the beginning of their stay. Frandsen arranged repairs within 24 hours, and personally delivered space heaters to keep the couple comfortable in the interim.

“The homeowners were on a boat outside the country,” Yates said. “Even if you have to pay a few extra dollars, it’s worth the peace of mind to rent a property managed by local professionals, just because you know if something like that happens, the problem will be solved.”

A professional writer and editor, Yates requires reliable Internet and electricity wherever he lives. Frandsen has on occasion personally assisted with rebooting routers and fixing other technical issues for Yates and his wife, Yates said. They have been traveling continuously since selling their home and embarking on an itinerant lifestyle 14 years ago, and Moab Property Management has provided some of the best service they have encountered in their many rental experiences since, he said.

“I give Dustin and Moab Property Management a high rating,” he said. “I cannot extol the virtues of renting from a professional management company enough.”

Frandsen said he enjoys making such an experience available to the whole range of visitors to Moab, from single adventurers taking a long weekend to multi-person parties taking a vacation of a lifetime.

“Moab is getting more and more expensive,” he said. “It’s just nice for people to have a choice. A private home with a kitchen and a living area is going to be a different experience than a hotel.”

The service also opens doors for homeowners who otherwise may not be able to invest in property in Moab. Often, properties can pay for themselves as owners live in primary homes elsewhere, investing in living in Moab in retirement or anticipating their work or life situation changing to afford the flexibility to move. Moab Property Management works hard to ensure their marketing reaches a broad population, and its customer service keeps renters coming back, so that properties are rented as often as possible, Frandsen said.

“I sit down with a lot of owners, as well as friends and family,” Frandsen said. “And most of the time, the numbers match up. The feedback I get tells me our owners and renters are happy with the results.”

Moab Property Management offers administrative support to clients

Moab Property Management is located at 690 S. Main St. For more information, go to moabpropertymanagement.com, or call 435-259-5955.