Private vacation villa rentals are a relatively new phenomena. The wealthiest have always owned a few strategically located vacation homes in their portfolio of homes scattered across the globe, and consequently had little need of renting a vacation villa. The target market for this recent vacation trend of renting a vacation home for a week or month or longer is the middle class vacationer looking for something larger and more luxurious than hotel rooms. And it’s possible to not only get much more space and privacy, plus often a private swimming pool, and all for a price that often matches – or is sometimes cheaper – than staying at the average hotel. Florida is a popular destination for vacationers or Canadian “snowbirds” hoping to escape from cold weather during the winter. There is a large selection of vacation home rentals available for rent across most of Florida. Prices vary but waterfront properties or those within a few miles of the ocean command premium rates; but it is a competitive market and you should be able to find one that fits within a reasonable budget. TIP: Vacation rentals in prime locations get booked quickly so don’t wait until the last moment or you’ll be disappointed. It’s not uncommon for some time slots to be booked a year in advance by repeat customers. Large mega sites with thousands of listings of vacation home rentals available to rent by owner have sprung up in the past 5 years. You can search by location, number of bedrooms and other criteria. These site are convenient but can be a bit overwhelming when a search returns hundreds of matches to pour through. Many vacation rental owners have become savvy and created their own websites so that their villa properties get highlighted and featured in depth in a manner impossible in a mega site with thousands of listings. An example is this Florida cottage, waterfront vacation rental near Sebring, Florida. The 3 bedroom, 2 bathroom waterfront property with a loft has a long private dock for lounging, swimming or fishing. It rents from $115./night (3 might minimum) week but is usually booked by the week or month during the winter season. By comparison, here’s examples of rental rates and info you’ll find on the most popular sites: VRBO (Vacation Rental by Owner), Home Away (homeaway.com). Here’s an example of a 1-bedroom vacation villa in Palm Beach County on vacationrentals.com, located just one mile from the Atlantic Ocean in Juno Beach rents for $650-$875/week or $2,500-$3,500/month.