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Some retirees have a big problem with short-term rentals

By Mike Wheatley | March 3, 2021

Retirees are finding it tough to find a home in desirable destination and resort areas where they can better connect with their neighbors due to the advent of short-term rentals such as Airbnb.

The problem is that homes in these desirable locations often tend to have lots of short-term rental properties within the same neighborhood, and they’re often associated with lots of noise, parties and people constantly coming and going, the Wall Street Journal reported.

“The vast majority of U.S. short-term rentals are in destination/resort and small town/rural locations around the country, of which many are the owner’s second homes,” said Jamie Lane, vice president of research at AirDNA, an analyst firm for the short-term rental industry.

It’s a growing problem too, as Lane notes that the number of housing units on short-term sites such as Airbnb and Vrbo grew from 450,000 in 2015 to more than one million by 2020.

Short-term rentals are becoming more common because many of these properties serve as second homes. The owners are looking to make some extra income when they’re not using their properties.

The problem is that many retirees have found that living close to other short-term rentals is not appealing, due to the frequent noise and parties and lines of cars parked outside.

To combat this, some resort communities have banned short-term rentals of less than six months, to protect their primary residents.

Wes Swenson told the Journal he was trying to buy a property in Utah that’s located in a gated community that bans short-term rentals and also enforces that ban.

“I have nothing against short-term renting in principle, but I don’t want to live somewhere that allows it,” Swenson complained. “It makes life too unpredictable.”

Short-term rentals are governed by municipal ordinances, and this gives them leeway to mandate rental minimums or require housing providers to obtain a permit. Homeowners associations can also prohibit short-term rentals in some cases.

The Journal recommends that home buyers check sites like Airbnb and Vrbo to see if there are many listings near the place they’re considering buying. In addition, buyers can also call the city planning department to ask about any local short-term rentals or to read the Covenants, Conditions & Restrictions document of the community they’re considering, to see if they have any policies to ban or limit them.

Mike Wheatley is the senior editor at Realty Biz News. Got a real estate related news article you wish to share, contact Mike at [email protected].
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