2017 Recap – BBO and the Vacation Rental Industry

As 2017 fades into history and 2018 dawns afresh, it’s safe to say last year was huge for the vacation rental industry. More and more, travelers are choosing to rent private properties instead of cramped hotel rooms. In fact, as recently as Thanksgiving 2017, vacation rentals tied with hotels and resorts as the most popular places to stay.

Vacation Rental Industry Growth

According to Phocuswright, the travel industry research giant, almost one in three U.S. travelers in 2015 stayed in a privately owned short-term rental, an increase of 24% from 2010. Growth in the private accommodation sector is faster than in the travel industry as a whole, and is expected to be worth $36.6 billion by the end of 2018. That is double the growth rate of the entire travel sector.

According to a Bloomberg news article concerning the vacation rental industry, “If people have stayed in peer-to-peer lodging [P2P] in the last five years, the likelihood that they prefer traditional hotels is halved (79 percent vs. 40 percent);” this according to data from research by Goldman Sachs. They continue, “We find it interesting that people ‘do a 180’ in their preferences once they use P2P lodging. They move directly from preferring traditional hotels to preferring P2P accommodations.”

Without a doubt, vacation rentals represent a product that people love and a solution that people need.

Regulation Efforts in the Vacation Rental Industry

In 2017, several states and municipalities examined or enacted legislation regulating some aspects of the short-term vacation rental industry. Mainly, these laws seek to address two basic issues:

  • Location – Many local jurisdictions seek to regulate where short-term home rentals can be located, mainly within tourist and short-term occupancy zones and outside residentially zoned areas.
  • Taxation – Many states and cities are eager to enact and enforce rental taxation statutes to take advantage of the growing short-term vacation rental industry in their area.

Some states are siding with vacation rental property owners on the issue. For example, HB 216, preempts cities and counties in Idaho from enacting or enforcing any ordinance that would prohibit a short-term rental from a certain part of their jurisdictions. It took effect January 1, 2018. Even for states and municipalities that allow short-term rental properties in any zone, they still seek to require homeowners to provide a local contact person who can respond to complaints or emergencies for each home when local needs arise.

Book by Owner – Resort Property Management

At Book by Owner, we are glad to be part of the vital movement that is the vacation rental industry. In 2017, we opened new offices in Aspen, CO, Kissimmee, FL, and Phoenix, AZ, while our other offices continue to flourish. The response to our unique model of local, flat-fee vacation home services has been great from both homeowners and realtors.

As your on-the-ground team for resort property services, we provide local, personal contacts and service with corporate support, including answers to your questions concerning local laws pertaining to the vacation rental industry. We handle the hassles of taking care of a property, responding to late guest calls or calls from neighbors, and more.

This year, we expect to open many more offices in exciting locations. In fact, we’re looking for entrepreneurs that want to own and operate their own local offices. Growth through referrals is our model. Will you help us spread the word? For more information about BBO franchise opportunities, or our local vacation property services, call 877-645-7060 or contact us online.