I've used Vacation Rentals By Owners' website (vrbo.com) for several years now which is how I happened upon this rental. Traveling with kids in today's economy, I try to find locations that will allow me to cook meals that are healthy, meet their dietary needs (one has a bit of lactose intolerance, the other has some food allergies and me, I'm always on some sort of weight loss program as I grow older).
According to the ad on VRBO, the "cute cottage" has a full kitchen. No, it does not. Aside from no oven (not even a toaster oven), a microwave very high up above the stove top and a toaster perched on a book case nearby, there's a small mini-fridge with barely enough room in the freezer to put a box of vegetarian sausage patties.
There's only one bathroom (the site says 1.25 baths, not sure how you can come up with a quarter bath) which was okay, but I worried about the flooring which seemed a bit "squishy" and indicative of some potential dry rot. There was also an absurd amount of mold throughout the house, much of which appeared to have been plastered/painted over or otherwise "hidden."
Even though I wasn't fond of the lack of a dishwasher, a single sink, minimal counter space and no dish drain, the hot water heater was small and not a fast recovery model. We were running out of hot water constantly (I even heated it on the stove a few times just so we'd have a warm shower in the morning) and on the final day, I wound up leaving a few items in the sink with a note saying we ran out of hot water.
The back door didn't fit into the jam correctly and while it did lock, I worried about a possible break-in (we took our valuables with us and at night, I blocked the door with a chair, but not exactly 'safe.') For that matter, none of the doors worked properly and while the front door had a deadbolt installed, the tongue was missing. Not safe by any means.
Of the windows that would open (it was hot and stuffy during the day), the dining room window had a hole in the screen (as if someone cut through it to open the window from the outside) and the bathroom window was a series of sliding locks and an eye-hook contraption that I feared I'd forget to latch (the sliding locks seemed to be ineffective as the wood decayed), so left it closed.
The floor in the living room had been redone with the fake wood, but it wasn't done correctly so there were exposed nails in the doorways and where the floor sloped down into the back part of the house/kitchen/dining area, there were two throw rugs (not safe by any means).
The site says there are two bedrooms. This isn't entirely true. Just off the main living room is a smaller room that's used as a den with a small desk and bookshelf, an ironing board and a couple of bins with extra linens. Beyond that is a very small (not even up to code) room with a single twin bed and nightstand, small closet that's not really usable and if desired, an accordion blind that's attached over the doorway and drops to about 18 inches above the ground. There's a queensized hideaway in the living room (we didn't use that) and then a bedroom back past the dining area that doesn't have a closet (technically not a bedroom) but does have a small dresser, nightstand and a queensized bed (that was a bit too firm for me, so I used the queen-sized Aerobed I'd packed and brought with me, which barely fit in the room.
While the price was great ($85/night period. No deposit, no taxes, no cleaning fees, etc. and the 7th night is free), we wound up spending much more than if we simply stayed in a hotel room with a microwave (as we travel with a Coleman plug-in cooler just about the same size as the mini-fridge in the cottage).
I was concerned about the amount of mold/mildew throughout the home, the lack of amenities and the deception with the listing on VRBO. Likewise, the security or lack thereof was a concern that did dwindle a bit when it seemed we were in a safe neighborhood but I wouldn't count on that.
The house was close to the downtown area and it was easy to get there off the main highway, yet far enough away that it was quiet. While the neighbors property was a bit disheveled (e.g. paper plates blowing around the hurricane fence, open garbage can, etc.) they were quiet and polite. Even the apartments that backed up to the house on the northern side were quiet. It had a nicely cared for yard and was, for the most part, tastefully decorated. The owner, Maria, whom lives in Southern California, was nice and fairly responsive (see below). The caretakers, an older couple living in the area, Juanita and her husband, were non-intrusive and polite (we really didn't have much contact with them).
Maria, as I mentioned, was polite and fairly responsive, however, I got the sense she was avoiding me and was worried that we were being scammed a week prior to going to the cottage when she hadn't charged the credit card I'd given, altered the dates of our stay twice and hadn't marked the website calendar showing it was unavailable for the days we were in. Also, towards the end of our 5 day, 4 night stay, we received a call from Juanita's husband again with some dates that were inconsistent with what I initially contracted with Maria. I have since checked my credit card statement and was charged correctly, so I suppose there's no harm there. However, when I attempted to contact Maria via email and again via phone the day we arrived, I was unable to do so. It left me with a sour taste in my mouth.
Internet access: There isn't any in the home unless you have a dial-up provider, then you can use the phone in the "den" and hook up that way. If you do stay, I recommend unplugging the phone as the owner hasn't listed the phone with the national Do Not Call registry and we did receive several abrasive telemarketing calls prior to unplugging the phone for the remainder of our stay.
Overall, I'd have to say I would not recommend this location to others. There are plenty of places to stay in and around Coos Bay that are just as economical and more safe/secure in my opinion.