What The Dickins: A Tale Of Edinburgh City

Edinburgh Festival Rentals – Why Dickins?

August in Edinburgh seems to get busier and busier. In 2019 Lonely Planet declared The Fringe their number one UK experience in its Ultimate United Kingdom Travelist. As ripples spread around the world, letting people know that Edinburgh is the place to be in August if you love culture, comedy and live performance, more opportunities arise for local homeowners to earn money by letting out their homes to visitors and performers. So, if you’re thinking about Edinburgh Festival rentals in Edinburgh in August, read this indispensable guide…….

Edinburgh Festival Rentals - Why Dickins

The Edinburgh Fringe was voted the No 1 experience in the UK by Lonely Planet in 2019

Edinburgh Festival Rentals – Why Dickins

In this age of Airbnb, it seems easy (in theory) to list your home for Edinburgh Festival rentals yourself, so why should you consider using an agent like Dickins? Everything going smoothly and getting your home back in excellent condition is the primary concern for most owners and it has to be worth it financially of course. What are the pitfalls and how can using Dickins avoid them?

Decades Of Experience

Louise Dickins, our Managing Director, has been organising Edinburgh Fringe accommodation since 1998.  She’s still hands on in the business, in the office every day plus she sees potential new homes and meets new owners. 21 years continually letting lots of homes for the Festival means that we have SO much experience. And experience is a very valuable thing when it comes to festival lets. We know what we’re doing, so you and your home are in safe hands.

We’ve seen some bizarre things over the years and have learnt how to avoid them. You won’t find 20 drummers sleeping in your sitting room when you work with us. Our excellent professional team is on hand to make sure that everything runs smoothly. We organise housekeeping for our guests during their stay. Our aim is that you return to your home feeling so delighted that the let has gone well, you want to do it again next year.


Edinburgh Festival Rentals - Why Dickins

With 21 years experience under their belt, Dickins know how to make sure that lettings homes for the Edinburgh festival goes smoothly

Great service

Service is at the heart of what we do at Dickins. We want both our owners and guests to have the best experience working with us. We really care about what we do and have always been it in for the long term. Going the extra mile is something we always try to do. We’re still working with the companies we starting letting to back in 1998. We’re great matchmakers too, so we make sure that the right person is matched with the right home. The Festival is a massive arts festival with late nights and plenty of opportunities to party. Knowing who is staying in your home is crucial and that is just not possible with instant booking on Airbnb. There’s no instant booking over the Festival at Dickins.

Edinburgh Festival Rentals - Why Dickins

Knowing who is staying in your home isn’t possible with instant booking on Airbnb. It’s where Dickins great matchmaking skills are key.

Little Black Book

Well it’s not a black, it’s more likely to be red and it’s not little as we have built up unrivalled relationships with our Festival guests over the years. But it is definitely part of the key to getting Edinburgh Festival rentals right. Knowing who is staying in our homes is crucial. Working with both visitors and performers and people coming to Edinburgh to work in the Festival, around 80% of our guests each festival are people we have worked with before. We work with many quality companies and reliable, respectful guests. It’s so much better when there’s a known quantity. And that works both ways, the companies we work with can always rely on getting a great service from Dickins.

“Dickins have provided the Pleasance with invaluable support for many years, sourcing accommodation during the Edinburgh Festival Fringe that perfectly suits a diverse range of requirements. Louise and her team are able to deliver the goods with a personal touch. They understand that accommodation during the Fringe needs to be more than simply a roof over your head – it is a home from home during one of the most stressful months of the year – and work hard to provide just that and, importantly, for a reasonable budget.”

Hamish Morrow, General Manager, Pleasance Theatre
Edinburgh Festival rentals - why Dickins?

Around 80% of guests who book with Dickins for the Festival have stayed with us before.

Brilliant Problem Solvers

Things go wrong with properties. In 2019 for the festival the theme was water. It was a really wet summer. With so much rain, strange things happened. It cascaded from the skies, through ceilings, in windows and it even came up from below. That was a first! If you’re letting through Airbnb and are away, relying on a local housekeeper to do everything, when the text comes in at 2am saying water is pouring through the ceiling, you’re probably going to be in real trouble, potentially facing having to cancel your let and lots of damage.

We are, in the words of Louise, “bloody good problem solvers.” and we have a 24 hour emergency phone, so it’s us who will deal with the problems, not you. Sometimes problems are very complicated. When the guest called saying that it was wet on the carpet by their bedside table, it took brains and determination to work out the cause. We managed to do that, keeping the guests happy and comfortable, so that the let continued too.

Water issues especially are very serious and so when our emergency phone rang at 2am with a guest saying water was pouring through the ceiling, we got up and drove there to sort it out (unlike the council who said they could do nothing) limiting the damage to the home we were looking after. Within our team there are 60 years worth of experience of managing homes and we’re hands on and practical.

“Louise Dickins & her team are a delight to do business with. Their properties are some of the nicest in Edinburgh, and they’re always easy to get hold of in the unlikely event of any problems.”

Sharon Burgess, Managing Director, Assembly Festival
Edinburgh Festival rentals - why Dickins

We have a 24 hour emergency phone. So when it rings at 2am with a guest reporting a flood, it’s us who with deal with everything, not you.

Sold Out!

Every year we let every home we take on. Many of the homes we let to performers and people working in the festival are let to guests for the whole month and if you’re letting out your own home, having just one guest can make the whole process much easier. With Airbnb, you’ll end up with new guests every few days, so if there’s damage when you come home, it will be very tricky to work out who is responsible.If there are changeovers, then we can manage those professionally, providing excellent housekeeping services, so that it all goes smoothly and your property is taken care of.

Edinburgh Festival rentals - why Dickins

Dickins lets every home they market each year.

Want to find out more about Edinburgh Festival rentals with Dickins?

  • We work with homes in central Edinburgh. The festival is a location game and people want to be able to nip home in between shows. So if you have a central property (the more central the better) please get in touch.
  • We need to be able to let the whole home, we aren’t an agent for individual rooms.
  • Homes we look after need to be in good condition and well maintained.
  • We need to be able to take quality marketing photos.
  • We can only take on homes which are available for a minimum of three weeks.

If you’d like to get in touch then, please either call us on 0131 558 1108 or fill out this form list your home and Louise Dickins will be in touch to have a chat and make an appointment to come and meet you at the home. She’ll then follow up with rental valuations.

When’s the best time to get in touch?

The earlier the better. We always get started before Christmas and often many of our lets are organised by March, so the sooner we’re able to start marketing your home, the better. It’s better for you too as you can then make plans in plenty of time.

We hope that you’ve found this blog useful. Louise Dickins would be delighted to chat to you if you have any other questions. You’ll find all the details to contact us here







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