How we have helped our clients

My Favourite Cottages boasts an ever-growing portfolio of beautiful self-catering properties in some of the best rural and coastal locations in North Devon, secluded places on Exmoor in Somerset, near family friendly beaches in Cornwall and stunning estates in the Scottish Highlands.

Our portfolio includes apartments with spectacular views over Saunton Sands, fabulous coastal properties in Croyde, beach-side apartments in Woolacombe, a great selection of countryside cottages just outside the pretty village of Combe Martin and some large luxury holiday homes on Exmoor in Somerset, as well as estate-based cottages in the Highlands of Scotland where there are thousands of acres to explore and beautiful Scottish scenery to enjoy.

As all our properties have a lot to offer, each cottage in the My Favourite Cottages portfolio has its own unique website so visitors can read detailed information, see a full photo gallery and make online bookings. Here is just a selection of feedback from what our owners have had to say about My Favourite Cottages and how we helped to market their properties.

Seascape

My Favourite Cottages have delivered on all levels. The marketing is comprehensive and best in class. With the lines baited it was only a brief matter of time before the business started to come in. I had taken time to investigate some of the online options for marketing the property. With a relatively straightforward query (hope to upload pictures of the property) I had the frustration of discovering that there was no direct contact facility that would put me in touch with an agency representative. The best offer was to pitch my query to a user’s forum. I could see the same questions raised again and again with a lot of responses but no practical solutions. By contrast, when I call My Favourite Cottages it is not unusual for Harry to answer the phone personally within three rings.

About:

Seascape is a five-bedroom holiday home situated on the hill overlooking Woolacombe Bay that can comfortably accommodate up to ten people. The house is large, spacious and tastefully decorated with large windows to perfectly capture the breath-taking views of Woolacombe Bay. To the rear of the house is a lovely garden perfect for BBQ’s and an external shower for cleaning off sandy feet.

Seascape is just a short walk across the fields to the award winning beach, which can be host to all kind of activities such as surf lessons and horse riding, alternatively there are several pubs and restaurants in Woolacombe to suite all tastes.

Why My Favourites?

The owners of Seascape wanted to use their home which is an ideal holiday cottage overlooking the sea at Woolacombe to fund a different lifestyle. They intended to spend the school holiday travelling around Europe with their young children. So the criteria for the successful agency had to be the ability to get the maximum amount of bookings so they could "sweat their asset" as they put it but also as it was their home they wanted to feel that whoever managed the renting of their home could be trusted to look after it, particularly when they were away. My Favourites personal approach combined with smart online marketing ticked the boxes.

Pine Lodge

We particularly like Harry, Rick and Amanda's personal service, they are always ready to advise on all related queries. Here's to the continued success of both our futures.

About:

Pine lodge is an impressive five-bedroom house with stunning views all the way to Saunton and Lundy Island. The house can comfortably accommodate up to ten people and is situated in Bickington on the outskirts of Barnstaple, so provides easy access to the busy town, which is home to a variety of pubs, shops and restaurants.

The house has a clean and bright atmosphere and a large garden to relax in. For when the weather turns colder retreat to the heated games room, or warm up in front of the log burner in the comfy living room with large sofas and TV. Pine Lodge is also conveniently located for visiting North Devon’s beaches with the nearest being Instow and Westward Ho!

Why My Favourites

Pine Lodge was the owners home and still when they are not in France, so when they decided to spend more time in France and rent their home as a holiday let it was especially important to find an Agent who they felt they could trust as well as having a good track record in getting bookings. The personal approach and bespoke, individual website made the owners feel as though they were being treated as individuals and not one amongst many.

Kittiwake Cottage

"This was our first time letting a holiday cottage and we decided to speak to My Favourite Cottages based on a recommendation from someone we know who had switched from a 'traditional' letting agency and hasn't looked back.

We signed up based on their personal service. They are interested in really knowing your property so they can produce good accurate copy/ images and talk with confidence having seen the property up close.

As owners themselves they have been able to offer a fair bit of practical advice too.  

The bookings are going well and we like the efficient email communications re bookings and our account."

About:

Kittiwake Cottage is a light and spacious holiday home nestled quietly in the quiet back lanes of Braunton in North Devon. This beautiful barn conversion can comfortably accommodate up to four people in two en-suite bedrooms, which thanks to zip and link beds can be set up as either twins or doubles.

Outside guests have full run of almost an acre of grounds, which feature an orchard, a courtyard terrace and the villages small river, which runs along the boundary at the bottom of the garden.

Five minutes’ drive from the cottage are two of the cottages best loved beaches, Croyde and Saunton, where you can get involved in a number of water sports. Nearby family friendly attractions include the big sheep and Exmoor zoo.

What My Favourites Did:

As Kittiwake was new to the holiday rental market we helped the owners decide how best to design the interior and things as simple as which beds to buy, like zip and link if possible. Once the property was ready to be photographed we organised the shoot and then proceeded to design and build the website and plan the online advertising campaign. As the owners had no experience of holiday letting it was important we were able to manage everything for them and make feel confident that everything was taken care of.

Ford Hill Cottage

"As a new holiday cottage owner I have found the approach of My Favourite Holiday Cottages to be just what I was looking for.

They have a flexible, yet very effective approach to working with owners.

They gave me excellent advice at the outset, arranged professional photographs and organised the creation of an impressive website that my guests tell me was a key factor in booking the cottage.

The fact that they know the cottage so well means that they can answer enquiries accurately and quickly and turn them into bookings"

About:

Ford Hill Cottage is a beautiful holiday home comfortably sleeping up to six people across its three bedrooms, and features a large open plan kitchen/living room.

The cottage is tastefully decorated and ideally located for exploring the North Devon coastline, Exmoor and the surrounding villages, and is based just a few miles from the seaside town of Combe Martin, which has a nice range of pubs, shops and restaurants, and is also home to one of North Devon’s most loved family attractions – the Combe Martin Wildlife and Dinosaur Park.

Why My Favourites:

The owners of Ford Hill had recently renovated the cottage and were looking for an Agency to market it and hopefully get bookings. They did consider several local companies and eventually decided upon My Favourites mainly because of our very “personal” approach and the fact we made her feel reassured and confident that we could look after her property properly which was particularly important as the cottage is right next door.

Results

Ford Hill Cottage experienced an incredible first year. The newly renovated cottage, which had never been used for self-catering, received 19 bookings in its first year, nine of which were in the first three months of its website going live.

Much of the success of Ford Hill Cottage, and the continuing trend for good bookings is due to the excellent five star reviews it receives from its guests, which help others in choosing their preferred accommodation.

Devon Beach Court

I have been with My Favourite Cottages for more than five years now – ‘even though I own an apartment by the sea and not a cottage!’ I have always found the team to be interested in doing the very best they can for my bookings and all at my convenience. Because they have visited Devon Beach Court on many occasions they can answer many of the potential guests questions immediately and thus generally secure the booking there and then without having to involve me.

The apartment is widely represented on various holiday sites across the web, and each year we meet to discuss, which of these are worth staying on with regards to the income, traffic and enquiries they have generated.

Thanks to My Favourite Cottages and their hard work my bookings go right the way through the year.

I am extremely happy with the friendly, personal service I get with My Favourite Cottages, I feel I know them all personally and in turn that they know me and my apartment.

The team are always quick to answer my emails and queries and I have been more than happy to recommend the company to many of my friends who have also been impressed with their care and professionalism.

About:

Devon Beach Court is a lovely, bright, two-bedroom apartment on the edge of the lively North Devon seaside resort of Woolacombe, home to one of the world’s most loved beaches.

Being a short walk away from the bustling town centre it offers a quiet place to return to after a hectic day on the award winning beach, and is ideal for a young family that needs an early night and some peace and quiet.

Devon Beach Court comes with its own private car parking space and is ideally located for exploring the local area with walkers enjoying the South West Coast Path, which is easily accessed in Woolacombe.


Why My Favourites:

Having been with a local Agency for many years, the owners of Devon Beach Court decided to give My Favourite Cottages a try, as bookings were dropping and the commission was going up.

It was a risk for Jenny and Terry as My Favourite Cottages had only just started and they were one of the first properties to use their bespoke model. But once their new website has been built and the marketing plan implemented, the owners discovered that this new approach to renting a holiday home seemed to work. Bookings for Devon Beach Court came in very quickly and have continued to do so, they have also been able to steadily increase their prices without losing any guests, and remaining competitive in the busy Woolacombe self-catering market.

Results

As one of My Favourite Cottages oldest clients, Devon Beach Court is a prime example of why clients enjoy working with us. Not only do we provide an excellent service at a competitive rate but we also secure good bookings for our owners.

Devon Beach Court on average receives 30 bookings a year, with guests coming not only for the peak summer months but also in the quieter, harder to rent winter weeks.

More than 80% of Devon Beach Court’s bookings are made online and come from a variety of sources that have been expertly chosen by the My Favourite Cottages team

Cornborough Coombe

"We transferred our holiday cottage business to “My Favourite Cottages” some 10 years ago, after being frustrated by the large charges levied by our previous Agents, lack of interest and their habit of promoting themselves rather than the properties in their care.

It was a breath of fresh air to join Harry and Rick and their ever expanding team. Their novel idea of designing, building and nurturing a flattering website for each of their clients’ cottages has proved a great success. Now each property can, and is finely tuned to its individual attraction and contains all the information required by a perspective holiday maker for the property and its local attractions.

The company’s forte is pinpointing the best advertising site and the placement of one’s holiday cottage website in the best location to tempt the punter, providing easy to use online booking, and we now have an ever expanding list of returning families.

The financial arrangements are clear, accurate and well documented, with all payments made promptly. They have evolved their support package continuously so now it is incredibly easy to view the success of your property and plan future renovations or alterations to suit your own customers' base.  

An incredibly successful move for us to join up with "My Favourite Cottages” and one we would recommend to any holiday property owners."


Jack and Gru Lomas

About:

Cornborough Coombe is a classically decorated country house situated just five minutes’ drive from the beautiful North Devon coastline.

The luxurious four-bedroom house can sleep up to eight people and has a range of facilities perfect for the -whole family including a games room that is equipped with a TV, DVD player and even a PlayStation to keep the children happy.

An additional two guests can also be accommodated in the adjoining annexe, which is wheelchair friendly. The small dog friendly Cott can be rented on its own, or is included in the price when booking the larger house. When booked separately, the main house is not let, giving couples the perfect opportunity to enjoy the beautiful gardens and large terrace.

Cornborough is also within easy reach of the historic port town of Bideford, which is filled with shops, restaurants and even a quay side farmers market on Saturdays where you can buy a wide variety of local produce.

Why My Favourites:

In 2010 the owners of Cornborough had noticed that while the number of year-on-year bookings they were receiving had dropped off, they were also increasingly concerned about the level of commission they were paying to one of the county’s largest holiday cottage agencies.

The owners had no real gripe with the agency and felt they did their job well but also believed that for what they were paying they should have been welcoming more guests to their corner of North Devon.

For Jack and Gru the chief challenge was that they felt the limited space afforded to Cornborough on the agency’s site could never capture the unique nature of the house with its many rooms and extensive gardens. They also had a challenging booking problem in that if the Annexe was rented, it meant that the larger house could not. This meant that the agency was unable to accept online bookings in case someone booked the second property before they had time to block it off.

My Favourite Cottages not only gave Cornborough its own website to fully convey its appeal to potential guests and included superb photography, but it also provided the owners with an online booking management system, which automatically blocked off one property if the other was booked.

Results:

Since joining My Favourite Cottages the owners of Cornborough have seen an impressive level of bookings, which have continued to increase every year and with the competitive commission rates, Jack and Gru’s own profits have improved.

The owners also feel that the personal service offered by My Favourite Cottages means they were able to get to know the people working to promote their cottage. They now feel able to trust their agency and their expertise whenever they suggest a change to the marketing, they can even adjust prices mid-season if required – not something a traditional agency would have considered or allowed.

Cophole Farm

"This is my first season doing holiday lets and My Favourite Cottages have been a great help along the way, from putting together the website and pricing to offering help and advice.

They handle enquiries from both myself and potential bookings efficiently and professionally and are always at the end of the phone if needed.

My property had only been on their website for a few days when the first bookings came in and I have been very pleased with the level of interest generated.’’


Fiona Cox

About:

Cophole Farm is situated within the beautiful Exmoor National Park. It is a large, elegantly decorated holiday home that can comfortably sleep up to fourteen people across its seven bedrooms, and has a huge variety of facilities and gadgets including two televisions, a pool table, an X-Box and even table football, perfect for keeping everyone entertained.

The pet friendly house is just a short walk from the gorgeous Wimbleball Lake where a number of land and water based activities are available for the whole family to enjoy.

The house has its own private garden, which is the perfect place to relax, read a book, sunbathe or enjoy a BBQ with your family and friends.

Open all year round, Cophole Farm is the perfect retreat on Exmoor for both friends and family.


Why My Favourites:

Fiona, the owner of Cophole Farmhouse decided to let her 7 bedroom farmhouse on Exmoor. Having done some research online she found a neighbouring house of similar size was doing very well with bookings, so naturally found how they were doing it. My Favourite Cottages was able to organise everything for Fiona so as a first time letter she felt reassured that she was in safe hands.


Results

In the first three months after joining My Favourite Cottages, Cophole Farm received 14 bookings, an impressive number for a house that had not previously been rented on a self-catering basis.

The first few guests to arrive at the house have also been impressed by its décor and quality writing five star reviews to praise their stay at Cophole Farm.

Biallid House

"I have been with My Favourite Cottage for about two years now. They were recommended to me by a friend who has cottages in Cornwall and who was enthusiastic about what they had done for her. I was not that confident they could do the same for me, as their roots are firmly in the West Country and my house, Biallid, is in the north of Scotland. Also, they seemed to specialise in lovely small cottages and Biallid House sleeps 15. At that time, they only had two other houses on their books in Scotland and so I was not holding my breath. I had also been disappointed by the performance of my previous letting agency, as I was only getting about 7-8 weeks a year and most of those were coming through my own web site.

Rick and Amanda visited Biallid House, took some lovely photographs and made some helpful suggestions as to how I might present it better. They took control of my website and asked for a budget of about £600 for marketing. I coughed up, begrudgingly, thinking that if they could just get a couple of extra weeks I would get my money back.

And then nothing happened.......... for several weeks........’Oh rats’, I thought, ‘well that was a waste of money. Back to the drawing board’. Then ‘ping!’ an email with a booking came through, and then another, and then another! I got five weeks in the first year of our partnership, 14 in the second year and so far this year another 14 weeks, with more still to come I am sure. The profitability of my little business has been transformed.

I find Rick, Harry and Amanda responsive, helpful and efficient. They know the house and that helps them market it to guests. I would recommend them to any holiday house owner looking to build their business."

Ishbel Macpherson

About:

Biallid House is a large seven-bedroom house that will comfortably sleep up to 15 people with beautiful mountainous views visible from every room. The house is dog friendly and is situated at the end of its own sweeping private drive.

Biallid House is just a short walk from the pretty Scottish Highland village of Newtonmore, which is home to many shops, restaurants and two museums.

Due to it being set in the breath-taking Cairngorm National Park - Britain’s largest; Biallid is the perfect location for country walks and outdoor adventures.


Why My Favourites:

The owner of Biallid had been using a local agency in Scotland with limited success and decided that she really needed to make more of this asset and asked a friend in Devon how she got so many bookings for her property. As she received such a positive recommendation from her friend Ishbel decided to give My Favourites a try despite the fact that her lovely lodge was in Scotland and My Favourite Cottages are in Devon. As with all our clients we produced a quality website and started marketing the property online, bookings soon came in. As we handles everything for her this saved Ishbel loads of time and grief and she finally felt relaxed and confident that Biallid House was now being marketed properly.

Results:

Since joining My Favourite Cottages, Biallid House has seen its bookings increase and is now making a healthy income for its owner. From only receiving a few bookings each year, Biallid is now rented for more than 15 weeks on average, and has a good level of repeat bookings with some guests enjoying multiple holidays at the house every year.

Berwyn

"Three separate owners recommended us to My Favourite Cottages, so we thought it might be worth talking to them. We have a lovely cottage in Crantock near Newquay, which is jointly owned by members of the family and we have spent a lot of time and money making it just right.

We’re both Doctor’s so do not have much time to manage the cottage. Therefore, we wanted to feel that it was in safe hands. Two years on and the bookings have been fantastic, and it has been a pleasure dealing with My Favourite Cottages."

Simon and Bruce

About:

Berwyn is a lovely five-bedroom terrace house situated in the quaint North Cornwall village of Crantock near Newquay. This beautifully decorated house set over three floors is only a short walk from the golden sands of Crantock beach, which allows dogs all year round and is therefore popular with owners and their four legged friends.

The house, which has its own private, fully enclosed garden comfortably accommodates up to 10 and is the ideal retreat for both families and groups of friends.

Why My Favourites

The owners of Berwyn are both Doctors and have put a lot of hard work into creating a beautiful dog and child friendly holiday home, but with their very hectic lifestyles they didn’t have the time to manage the cottage in the way they would have liked. As such they wanted to feel that it was in safe hands – not just in terms of the number of bookings it received – but that the people managing it for them understood their feelings toward Berwyn and marketed it appropriately targeting suitable guests.

The owners approached My Favourite Cottages hoping they would be able to fulfil a task that many other agencies could not even think of achieving.

My Favourite Cottages spent time at Berwyn really getting to know it, so they would be able answer just about every question a potential guest is likely to ask. From this they were able to design and build a website in keeping with the house and its beachside location.

The owners also found it beneficial to sit down with My Favourite Cottage to help with the planning of the marketing and pricing strategy, which was set up individually just for Berwyn and is completely managed by My Favourites.

Results

Year on year bookings for Berwyn continue to grow with more than half of its guests booking their holiday through the cottage’s own website, which attracts more than 400 visits each month.

Many guests at Berwyn also book early with summer weeks filling well in advance; the average lead time for bookings at Berwyn is 213 days.