Kiwi property rental website Bookabach is under fire from subscriber customers over its move to a global, commission-based platform.

Bach owners and property managers have lashed out on Facebook over the move, one which will now see them paying more for renting out their properties.

But Peter Miles, founder and general manager of Bookabach, said the move is necessary in order to have a sustainable future for the company and compete with other rental businesses.

"That was a part of the acquisition ... to compete with the likes of AirBnB and," Miles said.


"We had a subscription price of $300 and for that you effectively could fill your boots with as much rental as you wanted.

"For a lot of them [bach owners and property managers] they were, after [paying] $300, getting $10,000, $15,000, even $25,000 worth of business, but we can't operate like that."

The new commission model will see those property owners now charged 5.75 per cent.

Bookabach was acquired by HomeAway in 2013, and ever since the company's been trying to move off its original online platform onto a global one.

Miles said the company has been indicating for the last 18 months about moving over to the new commission model.

"This is a change that we've indicated for a long time, and is a change we're doing now, so it's just kind of getting their heads around that and accepting that it does mean paying more," Miles said.

"For bach owners and property managers that's quite a massive upgrade of experience, but like all these sorts of things, there are people who do struggle with change."

Miles said one challenge Bookabach faced was they had around 70 per cent of listings that were online bookable, while the rest of the property owners would have gotten direct banking details from the bach user.


"Online booking is what the marketplace wants, travellers want to be able to go online and book," Miles said.

But not everyone is prepared to accept the changes.

After 11 years renting her Waipu Cove hideaway on Bookabach, Marie from Auckland says the change has forced her to jump ship.

"We had an annual subscription, and then I got an email from them saying that they won't be renewing that subscription, that we had to go to the new HomeAway site, which basically means we will be paying a heck of a lot more," she said.

Marie now lists her property on HolidayHouses, which is run by Trade Me.

Marie says HomeAway doesn't allow property owners to screen people before accepting the booking, but with Bookabach, she was able to get the contact details of those wishing to book her property and then look them up on Facebook, or contact them before deciding whether to accept.

"They [HomeAway] have taken away our ability to screen the people before we accept the booking. You could be accepting god knows who, and then you get their contact information," she said.