Vacation Planner - Cape May Guest Guidelines

We are pleased you have rented a property through Homestead. For an enjoyable vacation, review these guidelines and be sure that everyone in your party is aware of these policies and procedures.

Homestead Real Estate Co. Inc. is located at 502 Bank Street in Cape May. Click here for directions.


Keys will be available for pick-up at our office between 2:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m. on your date of arrival. No exceptions for any time before 2:00 p.m. Stay in your car for DRIVE THRU check in. We bring KEYS & LINENS right to you! Drive thru check in available during the peak season.

Please do not go to the property first. Time is needed to clean the property between guests. Even if you have gone to the property before check-in and do not see anyone there, the cleaners may not have arrived yet to service the property.

We are happy to offer late arrival arrangements for check-ins after 5:00 p.m. Please call ahead to notify our office. Keys and check-in bag with your name will be left in the vestibule area in the front of our building.

Once you reach the rental property, please inspect the premises. If there are any problems, please notify us immediately BEFORE moving in, or as soon as the problem becomes apparent. If an issue is not reported you may be held responsible and forfeit some or all of your damage & cleaning deposit. It is very hard for us to give you our best service when you notify us of a problem as you are checking out.

Please check the refrigerator setting. The dial should be on the middle temperature. Try not to overload refrigerator with warm food. If you must overload the refrigerator, keep the refrigerator door closed for a minimum of two to four hours. It will take time for the refrigerator to recover. Refrigerator complaints are among the most frequent of check-in issues, but the most often resolved if above is followed.

You will receive upon check-in 4 important forms:

  • Map of Cape May
  • Customer Survey
  • Next Year Booking Form
  • Check-in/Check-out Infomration

Cool season rentals may want to bring extra blankets/quilts. Nights can be cool in the summertime. You may consider bringing sweaters and/or sweatshirts. Paper towels, toilet paper, detergents, trash bags and condiments (salt, pepper, sugar etc.) are not provided. Please call Homestead with any specific questions.


For a fee, based on property occupancy, linens will be provided for our rentals. Linens include 2 towels and 2 washcloths per person, fitted sheets, flat sheets and pillow cases for all beds, as well as hand towels and dish towels for the kitchen and baths. Beach towels are not included. Pick up linens at check-in. Please confirm you have received the proper amount listed on the bag when reaching your rental property. Upon check-out place all linens back into the linen bag (unwashed) and return to the HomeStead office. You may be charged for any unreturned linens. Pillows and quilts/blankets are provided at the property.


On your departure date all units must be vacated and keys returned to our office no later than 10:00 a.m.

NOTE: The items most often left behind are PILLOW CASES. Please keep this in mind when packing linens.*

We cannot provide clean, comfortable cottages for your enjoyment without a certain level of Guest cooperation. Please make every effort to keep your rental clean. Report any damages or maintenance issues as soon as they are discovered. A damage & cleaning deposit is collected to insure against damages. Additionally, all or part of your damage & cleaning deposit may be withheld if the following minimum check-out requirements are not met.

  • Living Room:  Put furniture back in place; remove personal items; check under furniture for personal items; clean table tops; vacuum/spot mop floors; empty trash.
  • Kitchen:  Clean and put away all dishes/cookware; wipe sinks, counters, appliances, tables; remove food from fridge/freezer & wipe; vacuum/spot mop floor; remove personal food and belongings; empty trash.
  • Dining Room:  Wipe table; vacuum/spot mop floor; remove personal items; empty trash.
  • Bathrooms:  Wipe down sink area; spot mop/sweep floors; spot wipe shower/toilet; remove personal items; empty trash
  • Bedrooms:  Remove/pack linens in bag(s)to be returned to HomeStead; replace bedspreads/comforters; remove personal items; vacuum/spot mop floor; clean table tops; empty trash.

*Homestead Real Estate is not responsible for any personal belongings left in your rental property. In the case that Homestead is able to recover such items, the fee to return them is $25 plus the cost of postage, no exceptions

Close and lock all windows and doors when leaving. These are only guidelines. The owner may have other Rules and Regulations posted in the house. A cleaning fee may be deducted from your damage & cleaning deposit if the above check-list is not completed. Keys should be returned to our office at check-out, unless other arrangements are made. Any keys not returned will be an automatic $25.00 deduction in the damage & cleaning deposit.


Homestead is excited to offer a convenient Damage Waiver option in place of the traditional security deposit. For a one time (non-refundable) fee, you will be protected against accidental damages to your rental property equal to the amount of the property security deposit. You pay the one time fee with your final payment and DO NOT have to pay a refundable security deposit. This allows more funds to be freed up for your vacation fun!

Note: The amount of your damage waiver is listed in the payment schedule of your lease. For reference, 1-2 bedroom properties are $50.00, 3-4 bedroom are $100.00, and 5 or more bedroom are $200.00.

Damage Waiver coverage not to exceed the amount of the security deposit that is attached to the property. For example, if a 3 bedroom property carries a $500 security deposit, the $100.00 one time damage waiver will cover accidental damages up to the amount of $500. Tenant may be held liable for damages exceeding the amount of the property security deposit. While heavy cleaning/sanitizing is not required upon departure, you are expected to leave the property in the condition in which you found it. Vacating a property and leaving it excessively dirty is not acceptable and may result in charges for additional cleaning. The damage waiver DOES NOT cover any additional cleaning charges.


You will find our homes' decor and furnishings reflect the owners' personal taste. Play house while the host is away, but remember you are an invited guest. Enjoy yourself immensely, but don't leave any unpleasant memories of your stay for others. Each vacation home is privately owned and managed. Each home has been furnished and equipped to meet basic vacation needs, but no two homes are alike.

Please respect any locked areas within your rental home, which are reserved for storage of the owner's private property. These areas are absolutely not included in the rental.

Occupancy is limited to number shown in the lease, which is strictly enforced. Reservations require payments due as listed on your lease. The final balance is due no later than 45 days prior to arrival. Damage & cleaning deposit is required.

Here's "the scoop" on our Pet Friendly Rental Properties!

Remember that pets are welcomed only at Pet-Friendly designated properties.

Before you leave:
  • Have your pet treated with a product such as "One Spot" or "Advantage" to protect them (and others!) against flea infestation.
  • Secure your pet's ID tag, and include an accessible phone number, in case you get separated during your trip.
  • Take your pet on short car trips before making the long journey to your vacation destination.
  • Pack a goody bag with familiar items, such as chews, treats, and toys, as well as your pets food and water bowls.
  • Include tweezers, gauze, hydrogen peroxide, etc. in case of minor injuries. Listed below are animal hospitals close by in case of an injury or illness. A copy of shot records would be a wise thing to bring with you.
While you are here:
  • Please clean up after your pet's daily walks - in public areas, as well as the grounds of your rental property.
  • Don't leave your pet unattended. Your pet will be in an unfamiliar situation and may behave differently.
  • If you must leave your pet alone, pet crates are recommended, as chewing and scratching can occur in your absence. It is best to keep pets inside when you're away from the property.
  • If you are uncomfortable leaving your pet alone for extended hours, or a day trip, we suggest you contact a local Pet Service as listed below, Zoo Sitters at (609) 846-4641, or Happy Hounds at (609) 972-1363, or WHILE YOU'RE AWAY Pet Sitting and Dog Walking at (609) 889-3538.
  • Keep pets off furniture, beds, and out of unoccupied rooms, keeping bedroom doors closed.

Compliance with these few guidelines will certainly help to protect your security deposit. Please help us continue to offer clean, comfortable, pet friendly rentals.

For these and other tips, go to


If for any reason you cannot occupy your rental unit for full/partial term of your lease, HomeStead must be notified in writing. Requesting a transfer to another property is a cancellation. If you must cancel your confirmed reservation, regardless of the reason (including bad weather, illness, death or economic factors) and the unit is not re-rented for the cancelled period, you will forfeit all money prepaid (except linen fees, damage & cleaning deposit). You may be responsible for the entire rental amount if the owner does not re-rent the property. We urge you to consider Trip Insurance to protect your interests. However, ANY change in a confirmed lease or transfer to a different week in the same unit (owner approval required), will be charged a nonrefundable processing fee for the original reservation and a nonrefundable processing fee on the new week as well. A cancellation that re-rents will be subject to a cancellation fee of 12% of the total amount (minimum $85.00) plus the nonrefundable processing fee. No exceptions. If the unit is re-rented, all money prepaid (less the nonrefundable processing fee and cancellation fee) will be refunded.


All cancellations will be charged a non-refundable processing fee.


During your vacation, you may make plans to reserve a vacation home for next year. If you have not made a tentative reservation by checkout time, the home may be reserved by anyone on a first-come-first-serve basis. You may use this year's damage & cleaning deposit as a down payment on next year's booking. All Next Year Bookings will be subject to a nonrefundable processing fee. Refer to the Next Year Booking form you receive at check-in.


If you forget something, call HomeStead as soon as possible. We will make every effort to find the lost items. Your items will be available for pick-up at our office - OR - your items will be returned to you for a $25.00 handling fee, plus the cost of shipping. Please note that HomeStead is not responsible for personal items left in the rental. Any items found that are unclaimed within 30 days will be donated to a local charity.


Not all units include telephones, but in some vacation homes, telephones are included for your convenience. They may be used for local calls without charge. Please note, however, that all long distance calls must be charged to your home phone, a telephone credit card, or call collect. Otherwise, calls charged during your stay will be deducted from your damage & cleaning deposit.


In the event of failure of any major appliance, air conditioning unit, or central air zone, the Owner will make every effort to have repaired within a reasonable time. There will be no compensation for Guest inconvenience. HomeStead and Owner will work diligently towards a timely repair; however, service vendors are beyond our control, and work may not be completed during your stay. Please do not allow appliance/AC failure to ruin your vacation. We cannot guarantee against equipment failure, utility interruptions, maintenance problems, inclement weather or early departure. Unnecessary service calls may be deducted from your damage & cleaning deposit.

Frozen AC units can be costly for emergency service calls. Please DO NOT set the AC dial to an extremely cool temperature. If the house is warm, please allow the unit to cool the house at approximately 1 to 2 degrees per hour.


The energy and natural resources that are saved today belong to you, now and tomorrow. Please turn off all lights, AC, heat and TV and check to see that all water faucets are turned off when not in use. We are proud to be a city leader in an effort to conserve energy and our natural resources. Thank you for your help.


From time to time, it may be necessary for us to enter the vacation home during reasonable hours for any purpose connected with the repair or care of the property.


Violations of these conditions and rules may result in the termination of this agreement. Upon notice of termination you will be asked to immediately check out without refund.


Each municipality in Cape May County enforces the recycling laws on its books. Please be sure to separate your papers and cans/bottles/plastics from the rest of your trash. In the event the trash is not sorted, you will be responsible for any fines from the municipalities, and will be charged a fee if we have to sort the trash. As trash pick-up days are usually mid-week you may be responsible for the previous guest's trash. You MUST take trash to the curb the evening before pick up. The trash and recycling days should be posted somewhere in your rental property. Remember the next guest will be responsible for putting out your trash. Trash MUST BE BAGGED PROPERLY and deposited in the correct receptacle.


There will be a $25.00 service charge, payable upon Property Manager's arrival, if you are locked out of your unit after hours.

  • HomeStead Office Hours - Monday through Saturday 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
  • Rental week is from Saturday to Saturday, (select few properties operate Fri-Fri or Sun-Sun).
  • Check in time is between 2:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m.
  • Check out before 10:00 a.m. on departure date.
  • Pick-up and drop off linens at office.

Off Season Get-Aways, Weekends, and Full Winter Rentals available. Homestead will design your perfect stay. Call our office with your requests and desires and HomeStead will find the perfect match for you. Check-in and Check-out times more flexible.


Beach tags are required for all persons age 12 and over on Cape May and Cape May Point beaches from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. when beaches are open or lifeguards are on duty. Beach tags may be purchased at all beach entrances. Tags may be purchased for daily, three day, weekly or seasonal use. Weekly tags run Saturday to Saturday. Tags must be clearly visible and in bather's possession at all times while on the beach. No bathing on unprotected beaches. Swim only at designated beaches while lifeguards are on duty. Call municipality, listed below, for updated pricing or click on these links: Cape May Beach Tags, or Cape May Point Beach Tags.


For public health and safety, dogs, picnics, glass, alcohol, litter and fires are prohibited. Trespassing on the dunes is STRICTLY PROHIBITED. Access beach at paths and street end ramps. No skateboards, roller blades or bicycles after 10:00 a.m. on the Promenade.


is provided on the Homestead property to guests with wireless enabled laptop. In order to receive password for access, guests need only show their Homestead rental property key tag. Due to the nature of our insurance for building use, we cannot allow guests to sit inside our building for personal computer use. Please use the free service of wireless internet while staying seated in your vehicle.


City of Cape May

  • Police 609-884-9500
  • Emergency (police/fire/rescue) 911
  • Beach Patrol 609-884-9520
  • Borough Hall/ Beach Tags 609-884-9522
  • Chamber of Commerce 609-884-5508
  • Library 609-884-9568
  • Post Office 609-884-3578
  • Recycling 609-884-9570

West Cape May

  • Police 609-884-3991
  • Fire 69-884-3436
  • Emergency (police/fire/rescue) 911
  • Borough Hall 609-884-1005

Acme Markets @ Victorian Village Plaza

  • Cape May City 609-884-7217

Acme @ North Cape May Shopping Plaza
(Beer, Wine, Pharmacy)

  • North Cape May 609-884-1203

Cape May Point

  • Police 609-884-3991
  • Emergency (police/fire/rescue) 911
  • Beach Patrol 609-884-0227
  • Borough Hall/Beach Tags 609-884-8468
  • Post Office 609-884-2754


  • Cape Regional Medical 609-463-2000
  • Emergency Department 609-463-2138

Emergency Services

  • Cape Urgent Care 609-884-4359


  • Cape May County Airport 609-886-1755
  • Ferry (General Information) 609-886-9699
  • Cape May County Zoo 609-465-5271

Shoprite Supermarket

  • Rio Grande, NJ 609-886-1917

Please note that although every precaution has been taken, this online brochure may contain errors. We reserve the right to make necessary corrections or changes.