Frequently Asked Questions

Click any question below to view the accompanying answer.


What time is Check-In and Check-Out?

Check-In is 3:00pm.

Check-Out is 10:00am.

May I request an early Check-In or a late Check-Out?

As much as we would like to accommodate early Check-Ins and/or late Check-Outs, we have many departments (and individuals) within our company who need the time between reservations to perform essential duties. This includes our Property Services Department, Service Technicians, Housekeepers, Property Administration Department, Property Owners, Property Inspectors, and others. All those individuals schedule their days knowing that Guests will arrive and depart at our standard times.

Altering these known times invariably leads to mix-ups or an embarrassing crossover with unexpected persons at the property. Thought you'd show up early and enjoy a long soak in the bathtub? Oops! Someone is here to change the light bulbs!

The Security Deposit seems high, why is that?

These are luxury properties with expensive furnishings and fixtures. Our experience has proven that when rare instances of misuse and mistreatment of the property occur, a deposit of this size is needed to return the property to its original condition. The size of the deposit varies with each property.

When will I receive my Security Deposit refund?

All deposits are returned to the Guest within 14 days of your Check-Out date (and usually much faster!).

  • If you pay by E-Check, we will deposit your refund directly to the checking account you used to pay for your reservation.
  • If you pay by Check or Cash, we will mail you a physical check to the address you provided on your Reservation.
  • If you pay by Wire Transfer, we will wire transfer your deposit back to you.

Upon processing of your security deposit refund, a notification e-mail will be sent to you with the estimated date you will receive the refund.

The Cleaning Fee seems high, why is that?

The cleaning fee represents more than just the cost of the housekeeping service (which is performed by a team of professionals who completely clean a home, and do all the linens, in 4 hours or less).

The cleaning fee also covers the cost and re-stocking of over 45 consumable items provided at the home that ensure convenience for our Guests (ex. cleaning supplies, laundry detergent, fabric softener, toilet paper, paper towels, napkins, zip-lock bags, foil, cling wrap, soaps, shampoos, conditioners, etc.).

In addition, it covers the cost of our professional Property Inspection staff that performs quality control on our housekeeping, and ensures that the home is in excellent condition for the next Guest's arrival.

Is the Cleaning Fee negotiable? We are really clean people. We have rented homes all over the world, and leave homes cleaner than we find them!

The cleaning fee is not negotiable. We have professional cleaners, who are required to clean after every guest. This ensures that every guest arrives to a professionally cleaned home.

What is the Damage Waiver?

The Damage Waiver is a way for you to reduce the amount of your refundable Security Deposit, and to increase your coverage for damages to the property.

You have two options for covering the cost of your security deposit:

  1. Pay the Property's Standard Refundable Security Deposit ($1,000 - $5,000 depending on the Property); or
  2. Purchase a Damage Waiver, and then pay only 25% of the Property's Standard Refundable Security Deposit ($250-$1,250 depending on the Property)

When you purchase the Property Damage Waiver, you will not be held responsible for qualified damages to the Property in the event that any damage should occur.

The cost of the Property Damage Waiver, as well as the amount of potential damage the Property Damage Waiver encompasses, is relative to each Property's security deposit amount.

If I purchase the Damage Waiver, why am I also required to pay 25% of the Standard Security Deposit?

The Security Deposit payment is your financial commitment to hold a reservation, and at that time is considered a Reservation Fee. Upon check-in, the Reservation Fee converts to a refundable Security Deposit.

The refundable Security Deposit ensures compliance with policies that may not involve damage to the property. Violations such as excessive guests and noise, excessive parking, smoking anywhere on the property or bringing pets could result in the loss of your security deposit.

What is your booking process?

  1. Guest submits a Reservation Request using one of these methods:
    1. From an e-mail Quote sent by us as a response to an Inquiry:
      1. Click the "Click to Book Now" button on the Quote to submit a Reservation Request.
    2. From the property listing on the Paradise Retreats' website:
      1. Click the "Reserve" button directly from a property's listing on our website (Path: Property page > "Inquire/Reserve" link > "Reserve" button).
    3. From the "Book It" link on one of the public websites (ie.,,, etc.)
    4. By calling our office and making a reservation with our Reservation Specialist staff
  2. Paradise Retreats receives and reviews the Reservation Request.
  3. Paradise Retreats approves the Reservation Request, and sends the Guest two emails:
    1. Reservation Agreement e-mail
    2. Payment Instructions e-mail
  4. Guest completes the documents:
    1. Electronically signs and submits the Reservation Agreement
    2. Fills out and submits the Credit Card or E-Check Payment Authorization form
  5. Paradise Retreats receives the signed Reservation Agreement, processes the Initial Payment Due, and confirms the reservation
    1. Paradise Retreats e-mails to Guest the reservation confirmation & the payment confirmation
      1. The address of the property is included in these confirmation e-mails

What is an E-Check Payment?

An E-Check Payment is like sending us a regular check in the mail, but instead of sending it in the mail, you submit your bank account number and routing number into a safe and secure form through our website. Submission of this secure form gives us approval to deduct the payment directly from your checking account.

What is your cancellation policy?

Partially-Paid Reservations:

Reservation cancellations result in the loss of the Reservation Fee/Security Deposit that was paid by a Guest to confirm the reservation.

Paid-In-Full Reservations:

Cancellations that are made prior to 90 days of the Arrival date:

  1. Paradise Retreats will refund the Rental Fee, Booking Fee, Taxes, Damage Waiver fee, Travel Insurance fee, Cleaning Fee(s), and Pool Heating Fee (if applicable)
  2. Guest will forfeit the Reservation Fee/Security Deposit

Cancellations that are made within 90 days of the Arrival date:

  1. Paradise Retreats will refund the Reservation Fee/Security Deposit, Cleaning Fee(s), and Pool Heating Fee (if applicable)
  2. Guest will forfeit the Rental Fee, Booking Fee, Taxes, Damage Waiver fee, and Travel Insurance fee.

Paradise Retreats recommends the purchase of Travel Insurance to mitigate unforeseen cancellation and loss of payments.

What is the Booking Fee and Administration Fee?

The Booking Fee and Administration Fee help offset the staff and administrative costs incurred throughout the reservation process. These fees give Paradise Retreats the resources to maintain Guest Relations & Property Services staff 7 days a week to assist our Guests.


Can I bring my pet?

Unfortunately, no. Our homes are pet-free for future guests (or owners) who may have fur or dander allergies.

If you are staying for a month or more, some homeowners may consider a pet with an extra deposit, but it is on a case-by-case basis.

If you bring your pet without permission, you will lose your security deposit!

My pet is a certified Therapy Pet - ADA requires you to accept it.

These are private homes and not public areas.

Private homeowners are not required by the ADA to allow pets.

Is the spa heated?

Yes, the spa is heated. There is no additional charge for spa heating.

To what temperature is the pool heated?

Pools with heaters are heated to approximately 84 degrees Fahrenheit.

Is there a fee to heat the pool?

Yes, the fee for heating the pool is $50/ day.

Do your properties have air conditioning?

Each property's Amenities page will indicate if a property has air conditioning.

Most homes in the Santa Barbara area do not have air conditioning. The year-round temperate climate and cool ocean breezes generally keep everyone comfortable. Electric fans are provided at our properties and, along with open windows, are usually sufficient to cool a house.

However, we have times each year when air-conditioning is a welcome amenity. For Summer & Early Fall reservations, if you are concerned about it being uncomfortably hot, we recommend choosing a property with A/C.

Paradise Retreats cannot be responsible if a Guest decides to commit to a property with no A/C, and then, due to extreme weather, needs A/C during their stay.

Is there WiFi at the house?

Yes, each home has WiFi Internet available.

Wired connections are also available if listed on the Amenities list for a property.

Can I preview the home?

It is not our policy to show properties to prospective Guests.

Our website provides extensive information for each of our homes. Please be sure to carefully read each of the detailed property pages; those pages should answer any questions. If the website does not provide adequate information, please call us and we will give honest & informed responses to any questions (or concerns) about a property.

Although not guaranteed to be available, Guests staying a month or more may request a preview. For those Guests, we can arrange a showing based on vacancy of the home, and availability of staff.

Can you give me the address of the home?

For the security of the homes and our Guests, we do not give out the address until you have booked and paid for your reservation. You will receive the address as part of your booking confirmation information.

One week prior to your arrival, we will email you the property address, along with detailed directions & property access instructions.

Can I drive by the home?

Although you may have received the property address as part of your reservation confirmation, you are requested to not drive by the home prior to your stay.

The reason for this is current Guests (and property owners) have been disturbed by "drive-by" guests who loiter on the street and analyze the home. We have even had situations where prospective Guests have parked their car and knocked on the door of the property asking to have a look around!

For these reasons, we request that Guests never do "drive-bys" at our properties.

Do children count towards the maximum number of overnight guests? Can children sleep on the floor on blow up mattresses & sleeping bags?

Children over the age of 1-year count towards the maximum number of overnight guests allowed on your Reservation Agreement.

We discourage the use of portable beds and sleeping bags.

Why can't I invite more people if the house has beds to sleep more people?

Although a property may have rooms to accommodate more overnight guests than advertised, our Property Owners have the right to limit the maximum number of Overnight Guests allowed at the property.

We are contractually obliged to honor the limits set by our Property Owners.

Can I have a wedding/event at the property?

We currently manage one property, Bella Vista, at which you are able to hold an event for additional fees. Please ask us about these specific event details and we are happy to give you more information.

Why can't I talk outside after 9pm?

An important part of our business model is respecting our neighbors' right to privacy, and the quiet enjoyment of their own home.

For this reason, we ask that you limit noise outside after 9pm. This includes amplified music, loud talking/conversations, etc.

Guest Resources

Can you recommend a restaurant?

Each home has a Guest Information Guide with a list of favorite local and nearby spots.

Feel free to call us, too, to get ideas of local cuisine, shopping, and other fun activities! We are local, located in downtown Santa Barbara, so we definitely know the area and are happy to suggest our favorite eateries, shops, etc.

Can you recommend a chef?

We have excellent private chefs whom we recommend.

Please use the "Guest Resources" tab on our website, and review the "Private Chef / Catering" section. Each chef is vetted and will provide an excellent experience. Click the link for each service, and contact them directly to set up your personal dining experience.

Where is the nearest grocery store?

Each home has a Guest Information Book with a list of nearby grocery stores and other local shops, etc.


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