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Ready For a Change?

Ready For a Change? Your Current Home Might Be an Income Source

If you’re ready to move to larger — or smaller — accommodations, you may be wondering what to do with your current home. If you have lots of equity, it might make sense to use this to buy a new property. But if you don’t, or if you wish to keep your current home in the family, turning it from a private residence to a vacation rental is an excellent way to supplement your income. Here’s how to get started.

Research local regulations.

Your first — and arguably most important — task is to determine if your current home or condo can be used for vacation rentals. The Monroe County government website explains that not all areas do. Further, some areas only require rentals of 28 days or longer, so understanding how to market your home to reflect local laws is crucial. You should also know that an annual permit is required, and your vacation home is required to utilize a vacation rental manager that has a rental management license. Before you choose a vacation rental company, make sure that they can comply with cleaning requirements between guests and offer round-the-clock, local support.

Objectively evaluate your home. While it might have served you well, vacationers will notice all the little nuances you didn’t. Things like stained tiles seams, windows that won’t open, and low water pressure will quickly get you a bad review. Do the math and decide if it’s best to have all of the small repairs handled by a contractor or if it makes more sense to do it on your own. As a general rule, if it’s something you have to learn how to do or that affects a major system, outsource it.

Upgrade important features.

Decide on DIY repairs or outsourced. 

A vacation rental has to feel as much like home as possible but it also has to cater to leisure travelers. To make your vacation rental stand out, focus on amenities and upgrades that will make your guests’ experiences memorable. A surround sound and theater system, fully stocked kitchen, and —(when you’re on the beach) tile floors are a great start. You also want to make sure that you have fully functioning windows, a king-size bed in the master, and preferably, bunk beds in a secondary room. High-end kitchen appliances, area-appropriate colors (such as Sherwin Williams Meander Blue for a beach home), and at least one large closet are all hugely beneficial.

Focus on your outdoor space.

With few exceptions, people flock to Florida and most other Southern vacation rentals for outdoor time. Those looking to escape the bitter chill of the North want to spend as much time outside as possible. For this reason, make sure that your outdoor space is second to none. A built-in firepit, patio, grill, and swimming pool will be attractive to both families and adult vacationers. If your home is on the beach, an outdoor shower and private place to change will be a welcomed (and sometimes sought-after) feature. Excellent landscaping and plenty of space to relax and entertain are also crucial.

Before you jump headfirst into the world of vacation ownership, make sure that it’s allowed in your community. If so, the sky’s the limit. If you can earn more than you spend each month on your rental, then you’ve created a positive and passive income stream. As an added perk, you maintain ownership and can block off days and weeks for when you would like to take a vacation of your own.

If you’re looking to buy a home or vacation property anywhere in The Keys, Infinity Realty has you covered. Contact us today at 305.741.7006 to connect with an agent.

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