In parts of the country considered vacation hot spots, the amount of short-term vacation rental properties are on the rise. It is a natural and obvious evolution as they have become more and more popular as vacation accommodations not to mention people looking towards vacation rentals as investments or ways to add to their income. The problem with the increase, however, is that many properties are offered as vacation rental properties by owners without following the proper channels.
In Boulder, CO, city officials in the zoning office took control of the situation and issued cease-and-desist orders to property owners who rent space in their homes via VRBO and Airbnb. A Boulder Daily Camera News article from last week noted that “The city of Boulder recently sent cease-and-desist notices to 20 property owners who are renting out space in their homes through Airbnb or Vacation Rentals by Owner after complaints were received against them.” Specifically, the article stated that the cease and desist letters came from the city’s zoning enforcement office and stated that the areas in which the rentals were located do not allow for hotels or bed and breakfasts or any lodging for less than a month.
Because this has become an issue in many destination areas around the country, it is recommended that property owners strongly consider listing their short-term vacation rentals through vacation rental property management companies who are familiar with the area’s rules and regulations regarding rental property. Here are the most common reasons to work with vacation rental property management companies:
Offer Full Service Property Management. Talk about making life easier when it comes to property management. Managing short-term vacation rentals is a tedious business even if property owners have only one property. Most reputable companies offer full-service property management. This means they have the ability to handle everything from reservations to marketing the property to the permits and licenses to problems guests may have (even at 2am).
Know the Rules and Regulations. In any city where tourism is commonplace, property management companies are very familiar with the city’s codes and zoning regulations that deal with short-term vacation rentals. Property owners can feel confident that they will not receive cease-and-desist orders.
Handle Day to Day Property Maintenance. Who wouldn’t love the idea that the weekly cleaning between turn-overs is handled not to mention any minor issues that arise like a leaky faucet or other common household problem? In the aforementioned article, one of the problems that Boulder’s city officials have not welcomed more vacation rental business is that absentee owners are not available to handle property maintenance. Vacation rental property management companies are the answer!
Provide Financial Assistance. Property management companies are set up to provide financial assistance. Most reputable companies have vacation rental software that includes accurate accounting systems for every property owner so that money from reservations is correctly managed. This ensures that taxes and fees are paid as well as any maintenance and cleaning fees.
Offering a Solution
In a follow-up, a January 12, 2015 Boulder Daily Camera News article notes that the cease-and-desist orders were rescinded so the Boulder City Council can address the issue of vacation rentals in its entirety. Council members know that with tourism on the rise across the country and the fact that other Colorado destinations welcome short-term rental business. They simply want to have a plan in place to accommodate this expansion. Vacation rental property management companies offer a solution.
We've been hearing that short term rentals are difficult to find in ski areas this winter. What are your thoughts about using VRBO or Airbnb in the winter markets?