An entrepreneurial spirit led Vivian Calzadilla to a life-changing career move. In 2013, she decided to leave the corporate world and start iTrip Vacations South Miami-Upper Florida Keys. The south Florida property management company now serves rental owners and guests in Key Largo, Islamorada, Coconut Grove, Coral Gables and South Miami.
“I’m an entrepreneur at heart, and I was tired of working for someone else,” Vivian Calzadilla says. “I loved the iTrip Vacations business model and knew right away it was the right franchise for me to partner with. I consider the iTrip founders my friends.”
A company layoff is one of the most stressful events an adult can experience. However, it can also lead to something better: An entrepreneurial opportunity. That was the case with Paul McAnaw, owner and manager of iTrip Vacations Branson.
"I started with iTrip in late spring of 2013,” Paul McAnaw says. “After viewing the videos online and seeing the caliber of people involved, I got excited about it. Then I had conference calls with three markets and thought, I can do this!”
After nearly 25 years of self-employment in residential construction, Steve Hatley needed a change. That's when he and his wife, Peggy, decided it was time to leave their home in Atlanta and move to Colorado.
“I became an iTrip Vacations franchisee in 2011, after we moved,” says Hatley, owner and manager of iTrip Vacations Vail-Beaver Creek. “We could not be happier. We knew we would love the mountains during the winter. Now, our greatest pleasure is the mountains during the summer.”
Dave Snower decided he had enough of his career. That decision led to he and his wife, Jan, starting their own vacation property management franchise, iTrip Vacations Myrtle Beach South - Teeoff Beach Inc. in 2011.
“The business I was in just wasn’t worthwhile any more,” Dave Snower says. “I couldn’t face the thought of looking for another job, especially since we had just moved to South Carolina in 2009. A friend had become a small business advisor a year before, and he introduced us to the iTrip opportunity.”
After only two months of researching iTrip Vacations, John and Dori Kennedy knew a property management franchise was the right fit for them. And since 2011, the Kennedys – owners of iTrip Vacations Park City – have enjoyed steady growth, success and the freedom of owning a lifestyle business.
“Throughout my work history, I had built successful businesses for other companies and decided it would be interesting to start my own thing,” John Kennedy says. “The most important element of our company is our team. We began as a family operation with my wife and two daughters. Now, we have added staff members who share our passion for going beyond what is expected by guests and owners.”
David Rockey wanted to own his own business and live in a warmer climate. After much research, he started his vacation property management franchise, iTrip Vacations Charleston.
““My wife and I, like so many before us, moved south to escape the brutal winters of the upper Midwest,” David Rockey says. “After a career of working for other successful businesses and having always wanted to run my own company, I searched for opportunities. iTrip was head and shoulders above my other choices.”
Mat and Penni Levine, owners of iTrip Vacations Keystone, have been married for 39 years and started their vacation property management company to fill the need of wanting to own their own business and work together.
“We have each owned, operated and sold our own businesses before,” say the Levines. “We are well versed in providing a high level of customer service to long-term clientele. We were interested in owning something that allowed us to work together and provided a lifestyle opportunity with multiple critical factors. iTrip met all of those factors including a residual income.”
Dan and Karen Wachter – owners and managers of iTrip Vacations Orlando – have been married more than 30 years and have successfully been building their franchise business since 2009. The Orlando vacation property management company started when Dan grew tired of his corporate life in the manufacturing industry.
“I worked 23 years in corporate America for Fortune 500 to Fortune 50 companies in positions including operations and managing manufacturing plants,” Dan Wachter says. “I was growing tired of corporate life and the lack of stability that exists in senior-level positions, so I made a significant life change and became an entrepreneur.”
iTrip Vacations Clearwater, owned and managed by Kevin Jenkins, began in 2010 after Jenkins decided it was time to take control of his future. He joined iTrip Vacations and created a franchise lifestyle business that he controls from where he wants to live.
“I wanted the ultimate freedom of being my own boss,” Jenkins says. “I worked in financial services for over 20 years and was tired of corporate America. Boss changes, region changes, company direction changes. There were so many outside events that could affect my career that I had no control over.”
Liz and Charles Park – owners and managers of iTrip Vacations St. Petersburg Beaches – started their franchise business in 2010 and have enjoyed success ever since. The St. Pete area vacation property management company helps rental homeowners maximize their investments and provides high-quality services not found with other property management companies.
“Our main goal in starting our own business was to be able to move out of the corporate world, get in control of our own business and income, and live and work in a lifestyle that suited us best,” say the Parks. “iTrip satisfied all of those goals for us and more.”
“When the real estate market crashed, I needed a way to earn money while continuing to work for myself,” Swerling says. “After submitting property management resumes for several months with no luck, iTrip found me through a third-party broker, and it sounded perfect.”
...[The business model] has complete upside with regard to the customer. iTrip® has fabulous background tools... I have little or no anxiety that I can succeed. I feel iTrip® is there to support me....This is a mutual-benefit relationship. It's a 50/50 balance, so I don't feel alone in this and receive fabulous support.
The business has exceeded my expectations. We are now a seven-figure business...We have exceeded my revenue expectations.
I have seen my territory continually grow. I can operate my business efficiently. I can collect my revenue from my guests in advance, so I don't have to worry about accounts receivable. The sky's the limit on the potential and the market.
[I started my business] because I was looking for something that was interesting, challenging, fun and growing. I like iTrip® because there's no business quite like it... This is a business opportunity like no other. The market is growing. The investment is reasonable to get started. It's a good match for my skill set. And I find the growth potential is absolutely phenomenal...I'm impressed with the quality of the people; their skills, their backgrounds are diverse, and they are all professional. I'm impressed with the investment that's going into iTrip® to help me be successful in the business.
This was my ticket to my future that I can control. One thing I looked at when searching for [a business opportunity] was the integrity of the people working there. I found the people who iTrip® has chosen, and who has chosen iTrip®, are people of high integrity with great backgrounds. Really talented people. I've never seen quite a mix of people, and they all come from talented backgrounds...The caliber of the people within iTrip® has been impressive...This has been a great opportunity to take my transferable skills and put them to work.
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