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Why Short-Term Vacation Rentals are Going to Dominate Hotel Stays in 2020

Why Short Term Vacation Rentals are going to dominate Hotel Stays in 2020 Traverse City Michigan

We know, it’s hard to imagine a vacation season happening in 2020, but if recent indicators of the effectiveness of the efforts to contain COVID-19 are right, most places in America are going to start to see businesses open, movement less restricted, and yes, vacationers. But, summer vacation 2020 isn’t going to be the same as it was in 2019.

Here are all the things we can expect to be scratched off the summer activity list:

  • Concerts

  • Festivals

  • Carnivals

  • Running or Bike Races

  • Sporting Events

  • Amusement Parks

  • Anything that gathers a whole bunch of people in one place

What’s left is going to be what our grandparents called “good old fashioned fun”. The tourism season in Traverse City and northern Michigan as a whole is going to be centered around spending time outside at places like the Sleeping Bear Dunes, one of the many amazing beaches and shorelines we have here, on the trails hiking or biking, or in the campgrounds, appropriately distanced from one another. These sorts of adventures require less centrally located lodging, so while the hotel industry could certainly use a major bounce in the right direction, our guess is they won’t get it. Vacationers are going to be turning to short-term vacation rentals for convenience, affordability, flexibility, and now more than ever, safety.

Think about what a vacation rental can offer that a hotel can’t:

  • Limited Exposure: With a single-family home-turned vacation property, you aren’t sharing a lobby with 200 other people. You aren’t touching elevator buttons, door handles, or continental breakfast bars that everyone else is touching. You don’t have security personnel or housekeeping staff in your room. Once you walk in the door of your vacation home away from home, you are protected from outside exposure.

  • Longer Times Between “Turns”: If you’ve ever worked in the hospitality industry, you know that the time between guests in a room is called a “turn”. Most hotels operate on a turn time that is around three to five hours, and it is usually only that long if they are turning the entire hotel. That doesn’t allow very much time for disinfecting of every surface, something that guests are going to be nervous about. With a vacation rental property, the turn time can be longer because the cleaning crew only has to do one property at a time, giving them more opportunity to do a thorough cleaning.

  • More Options for In-House Activities: The best thing about a hotel in the heart of the city is that you’re within walking distance to all the shops, restaurants and theatre spaces. But, with most of those entertainment and dine-in options gone for the time being, vacationers are going to be looking for new ways to meet those needs. A vacation rental will allow visitors to do all their own cooking, thus limiting their exposure and expanding their meal options.

When the vacation economy does start ramping up again, it will probably involve shorter stays with less planning. Since thinking long term is so tough when the news about what is safe to do and not to do is changing daily, it will be harder for vacationers to make plans months in advance. This means shorter, more spontaneous trips to places that have attractions that don’t require a lot of advanced planning (like our state parks, our bodies of water, our lighthouses, even our wineries and breweries).

Instead of booking the house on the lake for the family reunion, each family is going to meet on Zoom to share photos of their weekend adventures.

All of this could mean that short-term rental owners in northern Michigan are going to see a little more business this summer than they had originally thought, a welcome change for sure. But, the pinch is still real and being felt across the investment property community in Northern Michigan with many owners being leveraged to the max on their properties; requiring regular rentals to make the mortgage and cover expenses.

If you’re a rental property owner (or any homeowner for that matter) and would like to explore your options for selling your Northern Michigan home, Brick & Corbett is here to help. Our comprehensive coronavirus real estate strategy includes remote showings, virtual staging, video tours, and many other ways that our team is working to keep you and your family safe while at the same time getting the word out about your property to buyers across northern Michigan and across the country.

If you think now is the time to purchase a home, we can assist you every step of the way, from helping you find the right financing options, lining up virtual showings, and walking you through the remote contract process, making sure you feel comfortable at every turn. Regardless of what your real estate needs are, Brick & Corbett is here to help. What can we do for you?

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