Honolulu County awards pot of gold to hotel industry

Hawaii has had a complicated relationship with the short-term vacation rental market. Back before Silicon Valley got its claws into the process, these types of arrangements were called B&Bs (bed and breakfasts). Stereotypically, older ladies with a penchant for macramé would rent rooms and provide a meal or two – hence the name.

In recent years there’s been a (insert “large” synonym) growth in these types of listings. Back in the 1980s, Honolulu County (encompassing the island of Oahu) set a limit of 770 licensed B&Bs outside the tourist areas of Waikiki and Ko’Olina. It’s estimated there are 8,000 to 10,000 B&Bs operating on Oahu today. Suffice it to say that even subtracting those operating legally and in the designated tourist areas, there are still a ton operating illegally. (more…)

seattle

short-term

GOT

About three years ago, Compass Real Estate agent Phillip Murrell discovered an attractive off-market duplex in the M Streets. He liked it so much, he and his partner bought it.  Then they had to decide whether to seek out a long-term tenant or try the short-term rental market.

“At that point, Airbnb was big but a lot less tested than it is now,” Murrell recalls. “I didn’t know anyone personally who did an Airbnb.”

He initially rented out the bottom unit to a client who needed a place for six months. Upstairs, he began adding consignment furniture along with some of his own. Before long it was time to list the space and see what happened.

“The response was almost instant,” Murrell recalls. “Upstairs we were getting well over $2,700 per month.”

(more…)

Who will buy this US$3.8 million New Zealand penthouse?

In the good old days, the wealthy used to scoop up gold and jewels and flee in the dead of night before poor, angry peasants descended upon their estates. Today, the million-dollar jewels are often red carpet loans where today’s décolletage is rented like a yesteryear billboard.

Hiding assets from pillagees, modern-day pillagers have offshore banks, blind trusts, LLCs and cryptocurrencies. Fleeing is now the purview of private jets to far-away lands – but the local residents in those faraway lands are getting ticked-off at being priced out of their own markets and they’re mobilizing. (more…)

Airbnb

Dallas company NoiseAware says its noise-detection device is the answer for Airbnb hosts that want to be good neighbors (Photo courtesy: NoiseAware).

A couple of weeks ago, I looked at a problem a few neighbors approached me with — a nearby property owner renting out a house on Airbnb that had become a nuisance, they felt, with a succession of parties.

That column prompted David Krauss to email me. Krauss and his business partner, Andrew Schulz, have a product they feel is a boon to homeowners taking advantage of the short-term rental market — a noise detector that alerts a host when the noise level is reaching neighbor-irritating levels.

“We like to call it a smoke detector for noise,” Krauss told me. The device plugs into any electrical outlet, and after a fairly easy setup, begins churning out data for homeowners. (more…)