Great news for Sanibel and Captiva Vacation Landlords! HomeAway, the leading online marketplace for vacation rentals, released it 2014 Vacation Rental Report, which states that owners of rental properties are seeing higher occupancy rates than before, while continuing to raise their rental prices.
Sanibel and Captiva islands are having great years for tourism as more and more folks want to vacation and retire here (see Sanibel Ranked #1 In World by Frommer). The cold winters up north have help draw more and more people to Southwest Florida to escape the cold.
Some statistics from the study
- Captiva Island and Sanibel Island as one of the top ten destinations showing the greatest growth in traveler demand, according to the 2014 HomeAway report
- 84% of vacation rental owners report that this year’s bookings are the same or better than last year.
- 93% of owners did not lower rental rates from last winter, and 21% of owners raised their rates.
- Vacation Rental Owners who say winter is their peak rental season had a 70% occupancy rate. In comparison, Smith Travel Research reports that overall U.S. hotel occupancy rates averaged 57.5% booked in the fourth quarter of 2013 and 60.2% thus far in 2014.
- More than half (54%) of owners with a mortgage are able to cover at least 3/4 of their mortgage payment with the income earned from renting their home.
We work with a lot of folks who are buying now at today’s interest rates and prices, then renting out their homes to cover costs long before they retire. Many are buying now and using their home for vacations, in order to protect themselves from possible market appreciation that could price them out of Sanibel and Captiva before they are ready to retire.