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Frequently Asked Questions




Is the fee of £150 applicable every year?
No, the £150 fee is when we set up a new subscription for you in this website. It includes your first 12 month subscription, together with the fee for creating your entry. One month before your subscription expires, we send you a subscription renewal offer which allows you to extend your subscription for a further 12 months. The current subscription RENEWAL fee is £99, but please note that this renewal fee applies only to entries which already exist in the website and does not cover lapsed subscriptions, or pages which have been removed for any other reason.

How quickly can you add my page to this site?
We are currently adding one batch of new pages to this website every week. So long as Royal Mail deliver your items to us promptly you could expect to be included in the Cottage Guide within 14 days of our receiving all items necessary.

Can we advertise any type of self catering accommodation?
We advertise most types of self catering accommodation. The CottageGuide advertises cottages, farmhouses, townhouses, apartments, log cabins and so forth. Please note that we do not advertise caravans, camping, or mobile homes, and may refuse any other application which we feel to be inappropriate.

Can I email my text description to you?
Yes, please do email your text to us, or send it on disk or CD. You can simply copy and paste the text into a regular email. We recommend anything from about 300 to 500 words. You are welcome to have more than this if you wish but remember that 'more' is not necessarily 'better'. It's best to be concise so that people can easily find the information they need. Please note that if your text description is simply sent to us as a printout or handwritten sheet it will require that one of our staff re-type it all for you. In this instance please do not send more than 100 words. Please send your full text in electronic form if possible as this will result in a better advert. NB.We do not copy text from your own website or any other website. However, you are free to copy it yourself and send it to us in an email.

Can I email my photos to you?
Yes, please send them as separate jpg files - please do not embed your photos in a Word document. If your photos have a very large file size, we'd recommend sending these on a floppy disk or a CD. NB.We do not copy photos from your own website or any other website. However, you are free to copy them yourself and send them to us as email attachments.

Can I add other photos later?
Yes, you can add additional photos to your page at any time. Six photos are included as standard in the price of your page when you join, and additional photos can be added at any time for a handling charge of £10 per photo. The maximum total number that can be included per entry is 12 photos.

Can I change my photos later?
Yes, you can swap any of the photos on your page at any time as one of your three free updates. If the replacement photos are emailed to us as jpg files, or sent on CD or disk, there is no fee for swapping photos. However, if printed photos are sent to us there is a scanning fee involved.

Guideline for Advertisers about photos:
Contrary to popular belief, the fact that material is posted on the world wide web does not mean it is in the public domain or otherwise free to be taken, copied or used by others. Creators of web content own the copyright in the material they create. The advert you post in this website is your own legal responsibility, therefore the copying of photos created by others could expose you to legal liability if you use them in your advert. Please note that if you are an advertiser, No Copying is Allowed. When you prepare your advert, you should only be using material (text, photographs, etc.) that you created or own yourself.

Can I make a text adjustment to the content of my page?
Yes, you can request a change to the text on your web page at any time - so long as you are not aiming to change the entire content of your page to describe a completely different property - please see following item. You are entitled to free updates on 3 separate occasions during the 12 months of your subscription period. If you wish to make further updates after your 3 free updates have been used up, we can do these for you but please note there is a fee of £10 for each occasion you wish to make such further updates. This fee of course only applies to the changes we need to undertake for you - ie on your main web page; note that the changes you make yourself to your Noticeboard page and Calendars can be made by you using the password we give you and can be made as often as you wish, whenever you wish. The various facilities such as Noticeboard and Calendar systems are automatically included as part of your package and there is of course no charge for using them.

NB. Submission of text and photos
Please note that text and photos together with precise instructions for updating your advert must always be either emailed to us at The Cottage Guide or sent to us on disk/CD. We do not under any circumstances copy text or photos from your website or any other website.

Can I change my page so that it shows a different property?
Whilst we offer free updates on 3 separate occasions during the 12 months of your subscription, the purpose of these updates is for making adjustments to the details of the existing property you are advertising. These free updates are not for the purpose of swapping a completely different property on to your page. However, if you do wish to change your page to show a different property - for example if you've sold one, and bought another - then there would be fee of £35 for changing the entire content of your page.

Can I pay you by Credit Card or Switch?
Sorry. It's just cheques or bank transfers at the present time.

Can you do anything with bad or dark photos?
We can make some adjustment to images if necessary - including general lightness, contrast, colour saturation and hue, and where practicable we'll remove scratches or blemishes, and crop the image as per your instructions. If you require more complex image manipulation - ie removal of dustbins, cars, people - this may require additional studio time.

Could you write up my text description for me?
No, we can only work with what we are given. We will be glad to correct spelling and grammar if necessary, but as regards 'creative' or 'imaginative' copy, we will have to leave this to you who know the property, its setting, and its surrounding area. Please remember to send your description text to us by email or provide on disk/CD.

Standards: Do we have to have a Tourist Board grading?
We do not insist that you obtain a Tourist Board stars grading in order to advertise your property in this website - and many of the properties advertised do not carry a Tourist Board star rating, indeed some of these are superb properties. However, please note that your accommodation must obviously be of a suitable standard for letting - and by 'suitable standard' we mean the standard expected in the 21st Century - not the 1950s!. In other words we mean that whilst your property does not necessarily have to have been inspected by the Tourist Board and awarded a quality grading, it MUST nevertheless be of a standard which would achieve a Tourist Board quality grading if it was to be inspected by the Tourist Board. Furthermore, we stipulate that it is the owner's responsibility to ensure that their properties are properly cleaned prior to each holiday letting. It is not acceptable for owners to pretend they are not responsible by saying that it is the responsibility of the holidaymaker to leave the property cleaned and tidy for the next holidaymaker. In such cases an advertisement will be immediately removed from the website and no refund of advertising fees will be given.
The majority of owners are perfectly aware of what sort of standards people have a right to expect and in fact will usually go way beyond normal requirements to provide accommodation that really is a home from home - many will go even further to provide something special or unique. But unfortunately there are some people in this world who think that 'anything goes'. On very rare occasions an owner will place an advertisement in this website where the accommodation does not even reach what would be considered a minimum standard suitable for letting to human beings, and we therefore point out the following: We reserve the right to immediately remove an advertisement from this website if due to the nature of complaints it is felt that the property is unsuitable for letting. In certain cases, whether or not a complaint has been received, we reserve the right to require that an owner obtain a Tourist Board quality grading in order to be able to advertise in this website - however this is purely at our discretion and please note that even Tourist Board rated properties have occasionally been removed from this website in the case of poor standards of maintainance. We reiterate that there is no refund of advertising fees in the case of advertisements which have had to be removed due to sloppy standards, or bad management. If a property becomes the subject of legal proceedings, we reserve the right (at our discretion) to suspend the advertisement for that property, pending the outcome of those legal proceedings.

Who decides the order of listings under maps etc?
As regards the order of listings in search results, and lists under maps, county directories etc, pages are strictly listed in the order of maximum number which can be accommodated in any of the units shown on the owner's page. Therefore all the two person properties will appear at the top, then the 3 person, etc, until the last group which is those for 9 or more persons. This allows site users to quickly browse down to the accommodation which will suit their size party. However, within each 'sleeping capacity' category, the order of the properties is changed at random every day. So, for instance, if you owned a 6 person property, you would sometimes be at or near the top of the 6 person ones - and sometimes at or near the bottom - but you would never be listed before any of the 5 person ones, or after the 7 person ones.

Can I advertise more than one property on my page?
We have no objection to those wishing to advertise groups of different sized accommodation on just one page so long as they are all owned by the same person. But remember that whilst the amount of information on the one page may be suitable for giving an outline description of everything or an overall view of your holiday complex, conversely it may be seen as not providing enough detail to be of interest. Note also, importantly, that there is one database entry for each page and the field for "maximum number accommodated" can naturally only be set at one figure. If you are advertising a range of different sized properties - for example sleeping 4, 6 and 8, your page would come up well in searches for properties sleeping 8, but not when searching for properties sleeping 4, or properties sleeping 6. Owners of multiple properties may prefer to take multiple pages to ensure they are promoting each of their properties, and not just the largest one.

Can you change the URL (web address) of my page?
Note that your existing CottageGuide web address will have been submitted to the search engines, and that the subsequent alteration of your page's web address would mean loss of those search engine listings. The links to your page throughout the CottageGuide itself would also need to be changed and verified. Changing a web address is therefore not a completely straightforward matter and we do not recommend this course of action. If however you still do wish to change your web address we can do this for you but to cover engineer's time request a fee of £35 by cheque payable to "Ash Mackenzie Publishing Ltd".

Why didn't you update my page as requested?
We sometimes do get asked this question - where it transpires the owner is still seeing an old version of their page which is stored in their computer memory. To try getting the fresh version of the page from the internet, here's what to do:
1. Log onto the internet.
2. Go to your page.
3. Click the 'reload' or 'refresh' button at the top of your browser. This hopefully will ensure that your computer fetches the new version of your page from the server instead of just giving you the old one that has been retained in your computer memory - but please note that sometimes that doesn't work and your computer will still show you the old memorised version of the page. We do install no-cache code to prevent this happening but unfortunately some computers seem to ignore it.

Can I ask you to send me a printout of my web page?
We do send you a printout of your new page as soon as your new entry has been placed on the website, and we do also send you a printout of your page when we send renewal details a month before the expiry date of your subscription. This is to make it easier for you to indicate any adjustments you wish to be made to your entry. We're not a printing company and are busy with other things, so we do not normally supply printouts at other times of the year, or after making updates during the course of the year. However, if you do require additional printouts we can do this for a fee of £10.

Can I request that my page be removed from the website?
If you wish to stop advertising your property in this website - whether due to the sale of your property, or for any other reason - we can remove your entry from the website at short notice within 3 days or so, so long as you confirm this request to us in writing. There is no fee involved in removing an entry from this website, however please note that removal of your entry effectively terminates your subscription. If you later wish to have your entry reinstated, this does involve the commencement of a new 12 month subscription at £150. For this reason we would recommend exercising due caution if you believe that you have sold your property but have not yet received the funds from your prospective purchaser.

Why can't I subscribe for a period less than a year?
We don't offer subscriptions for periods of less than a year. We can remove your page at any time you wish us to - thereby terminating the current subscription - but we can not offer refunds for what you may believe to be the unused portion of your subscription. The very modest fee we charge for an annual subscription does not apportion itself in equal amounts for each month of the year - in other words the bulk of our work is incurred at the very beginning of your subscription.

How long has The Cottage Guide been going?
It was started in 1998, and has grown purely from word of mouth, recommendations, and by being found easily in the search engines. We never send out junk emails, and we never make nuisance telephone sales calls.

NB. Website links:
We offer owners one link to their own stand-alone web page or website but not to adverts or pages which are considered inappropriate or which are part of other organisations' websites, eg county directories, webrings, letting agencies etc. In fairness to other members of the Cottageguide we can not offer links to the kind of pages which offer an exit route by way of links to tourist boards, accommodation directories, or to other properties not owned by you. We do not offer links to any website which is not completely owned and controlled by you. Links to owner websites work in a standard way throughout this site, and will open the owner's website within a new window. Such website links are provided on an 'as is' basis and cannot be adapted or changed to suit individual requirements.

NB. Email links:
The purpose of this guide is to benefit individual cottage owners who handle their own bookings direct with holidaymakers. We therefore do not offer email links to booking agencies (nor agency phone numbers, names, contact addresses etc).




Further questions?
If you have further questions about joining this website which are not answered here or in the section about adding your property, please contact Adrian Bennet :

E-mail: mail@cottageguide.co.uk

Telephone Helpline: 018907 61766
Telephone hours:
Monday - Friday, 9am - 12 noon.
- not Bank Holidays, Public Holidays, the period between Christmas and New Year.

Postal address:

Ash Mackenzie Publishing Ltd.
The Loaning,
Reston,
Eyemouth,
Berwickshire,
TD14 5LD




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