(* see individual houses for details)


I have never rental a vacation rental property before.   What should I expect?

Rent By The Beach offers four unique homes individually decorated with charm and personality.    Each home offers you more space than a conventional hotel room including common living space, dinning room, equipped kitchen, laundry facilities, back yards, grills, porches/balconies, etc.   What a vacation rental does not supply is 24 hour room or maintenance service.   Cleaning service during your stay can be supplied at an additional charge.


Why should I rent from you?

*We have excellent reviews.

*We respond quickly to any concerns.

*We are flexible and accommodating.

*We continually strive to make our vacation properties a place you will want to return to.

*We offer a unique experience unlike a hotel.  No cookie cutter approach here.

*All bedrooms are individually decorated.

*Each house offers hand painted floors/cabinets/stairs/valances.

*McNeil House has a piano.

*Lots of charm including interesting art.

*Historic homes with great character and features (including a claw foot tub and pre-civil war front door and stair case at McNeil House).


May I smoke in the house?

No, sorry we do not allow smoking anywhere inside any of our properties.


Do you have grills? *

Yes.  Typically charcoal.


How far are you from the beach/town? *

Every house is an EASY walk to both.   The town sits on a bluff and the beach is right below the bluff so if you are close to town you are close to the beach.   The McNeil House, for example, is the closest house in all of St. Joe to downtown.  The Sand Rabbit is TWO HOUSES to Lake/MI.   Emma’s is SEVEN Houses to Silver Beach.  No car needed here!


Do you have air conditioning?



Do you allow pets?

Please inquire.   We have allowed well behaved pets (no barking, accidents, chewing).   There is an additional charge for each pet between $10 to $15.00 per day.



  Do you rent for less than a week in the summer?

Yes, we will consider this for the Sand Rabbit and McNeil House, but expect to pay higher rates.  Standard rental is weekly in the summer, weekends/weeks/months in the shoulder season and off season. 


What are your prices?*

Our rates in the high season range typically for $80.00 per room, per night to $150.00 per room per night.  It depends in when you come, number of people, length of stay.   Please see our rate information for details or call.



Do you rent in the off season?

Absolutely!   Weekends, weeks, monthly.


Do you have off season rates?

Yes.  See our rate information or call us for more information. 


We love your houses, but are on a strict budget.  What can we do?

We do our best to accommodate all budgets and try creatively to find ways to make renting from us a win- win for everyone.   You can come in the off/shoulder season, book a week in early June when our rates are less.


Do you take a security deposit?

Yes, we take a credit card to hold the house and it acts as a damage deposit.  We can also take a separate check for $500, but prefer the ease of a credit card.  Please notify us if there is any damage when you arrive or during your stay.  Although we are a business, we care about our properties and ask you to “leave no trace.”


Is there parking.*

Yes, see individual houses for details.  You can park on the street all day (except 2:00 – 6:00 am).  Weekends you can park over night on the street.


Do all your houses have fully equipped kitchens with dishwasher, toasters, coffee makers, microwaves, etc?

Yes.  We do our best to have everything you will need when you arrive.  We have basic pots and pans.    If you need a special baking pan or utensil we ask you to bring that with you.


Can we have more people than our rental agreement states?

No.  St. Joe has strict occupancy limits.  However, we can accommodate most size groups since combined total we can sleep up to 46 people!


Do you have cable/internet?

Yes.  All four houses have cable.  Inquire about Internet.   We do our best, but can’t be responsible for service interruptions.


What type of outdoor space do you offer?

Lots of options!   All houses have a front and/or back porch or both.  The Sand Rabbit has a fenced yard.  Emma’s has a double wood lot (with a north woods feel).  Sunflower has a nice big yard.   McNeil has a small back yard with a side yard and wonderfully large front porch.  

Do you do anything for special events?

Yes.  We have a romantic package and a family package.   Please inquire for more details.   The McNeil House has hosted many weddings over the years.   The park across the street is perfect for photos.


We are planning a special event, but can’t quite get people to commit.  What can we do?   We’d love to rent from you.

If you book a house, and then you need more space, we can “upgrade” you to a bigger house (price difference applies) as long as space is available.


Are we allowed to have a party with people not staying at the house?

Please inquire.  Depending on size there may be an additional charge for this.


Do you have a DVD/VCR.



What is something happens and we the house requires maintenance?

Unlike a hotel we do not have in house staff, however, over the years we’ve developed relationships with repair people and will do our absolute best to get a repair person to address the issues right away.   We do not offer refunds for issues beyond our control.


Do you take credit cards?

Yes.  Add 3.5%.  


Check in?  Check out?

4:00 to 5:00 p.m. and 10:30 p.m.   We need time for our cleaning person to get the house ready.  Sorry, no earlier arrivals (unless you want to take the house “as is.”)


What if I have an issue or problem with the house?

We ask you to notify us immediately if there is a problem.   We will do our best to resolve the problem including sending our cleaning person back in if the house isn’t cleaned to your satisfaction.  We want you to be happy while on your vacation!   We also ask you to be understanding if something happens beyond our control.


 How do we book?

That’s easy.  Call/email/fax a visa or MasterCard number to hold the house and then send us a check for half.


How do we get in the house?

Each house is on a lock box.  The code will be sent with your final payment.


What if we have to cancel?

We have taken the house off the market as soon as you give us your credit card number.  We most likely have turned away other renters.   We suggest inexpensive travel insurance in case of an unexpected emergency.  We will refund your money minus $100.00 if we can re-book the house at market value.   If its last minute, or we are unable to rent to someone else, then we will substitute another time within one year.


What do we bring?

Personal items.   Cell phone.   Sheets (see below).  Beach and bath towels.   Groceries.  Beach chairs, umbrella, toys, etc.   Paper products.  We do our best to start you off with paper products, but suggest you come to the house first before you go to the grocery store.


 What about sheets/towels?*

We do not supply towels.   We do not supply sheets at either the Sunflower or Emma’s Cottage.  We do supply sheets at the Sand Rabbit and McNeil House for weekly summer rentals.   Short term stays provide their own unless other arrangements have been made.  Weekend bookings/off season we can supply sheets for an additional charge.


Do you have beach toys, etc?   What about kids stuff inside the house?

Yes.  We try to have books, toys, beach toys at each house, but it is hard to keep track of beach paraphernalia and, unfortunately, no longer provide beach chairs.



Do you have a cleaning fee?*

Yes.   It’s standard when you rent a house.   Cost is based on size of the house.  See individual houses for details.


What is there to do in St. Joe?

A LOT.    St. Joe has its own web site and you can visit there for more info.   www.sjtoday.org.    In addition to the beach and town which are all walking distance, the Kid’s Curious Museum, Slash Park, Carousel, library, Krasl Art Center are all an EASY walk.  There are tons of special events/festival throughout the summer.    You can be as busy as you want or simply sit out on the front porch and read a book while you sip lemon aide.

Do you have any types of incentives for repeat customers?

We are happy to offer someone a complementary night stay (based on availability) if they refer someone to us and they book the house.    We are working on an incentive for repeat customers.   Stay tuned.


































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