We have been really inspired by those in the short term rental industry’s response to this coronavirus crisis. An international crisis of this proportion that blindsides so many industries, and nearly every person on this planet, was not even on our radar 6 months ago. How could you ever plan for such times?
But that’s just the thing. During times like this I’m reminded that no amount of planning is fool-proof. We can be wise, and proactive, and thoughtful all day every day, and yet one of the marvels of humanity is that literally can never know what the future may hold.
So in this time of such uncertainty and pain, we thought we’d round up some creative, thoughtful, and innovative ways that we’ve seen some short term rentals out there handling this crisis. For some, it’s about being flexible, creative and bending with the circumstances. For others, it’s about hunkering down and riding out this wave with a since of realism (without sacrificing compassion in the process!). And others still are simply extending an olive branch (because we can’t extend our hands right now!) and offering those in need the opportunity to access their units if needed. There is no right way to weather this storm, but we’re really impressed by all the ways you’re out there doing it.
Herber City, Utah – (Zella’s House-A Victorian Cottage) This was a really sweet response from the owner of Zella’s House in Herber City, UT. This beautifully appointed 1892 Victorian Cottage really has seen it all – times of intense pain and struggle to incredibly prosperous and joyful times. They are hunkering down there, accepting that this international quarantine means a quiet spring, and maybe summer too, and the history of this home gives hope that we will find healthy and happiness again, on the other side of the current situation.
Wenatchee, WA – (Roots Bungalow) – We’ve always said that one of the big perks of having a rental property is the flexibility it provides to bend and shape with the times. When short term rental is working well, it’s a great way to earn extra income, and then it’s easy to switch gears if you need to bring in a family member to stay for a while, or in the case of Root Bungalow, you need to reconsider STR and look at long term rental instead. In times of infrequent travel, you may be more likely to earn the income you need from a long term tenant. And that’s the beauty here. You can bend and change as needed.
San Diego, CA (Nancy’s Vacation Rentals) – We love the compassion offered on Nancy’s Vacation Rental instagram post here. She’s acknowledging that first responders and other essential professionals are traveling across the country to hot spots to help out. And she’s offering reduced rates so that per diems may cover an ocean front stay instead of a crappy hotel room somewhere. I wish every first responder could rest next to the ocean when they’re taking a break from the life saving work they’re doing on the front lines of COVID response.
Atlanta, GA (Rustic Modern Style Home Near City Attractions) – Airbnb Atlanta, with many properties within 4 miles of Atlanta, have taken this open door approach of offering assistance. Opening a line of communication for people to reach out with their needs makes them very accessible to folks who need to ask for reduced rates, who may need to quarantine themselves, or are traveling to help in crisis response and need to special accommodations. Letting people know you care is so important in times like these.
San Antonio, TX (Kingsbury Castle) – The owners of Kingsbury Castle launched their new short term rental just this year. Even before this crisis hit they had chosen to list on both Airbnb and Furnished Finder. This joint approach positioned them well to accommodate traveling nurses, not just during the global pandemic we find ourselves in now, but all the time. They already have bookings in place to accommodate traveling nurses coming their way to assist on the front lines.