Post # 1
I’m putting together some loose budget estimates for options we have to rent a house out in Hawaii for a destination wedding/honeymoon. I’ve found listings on VRBO, Airbnb, and TripAdvisor that look interesting.
But then, I went on the Zillow version of a wiki walk and noticed that several of the houses are listed as for sale. Most have been listed there for close to a year or more; double checking with some that publish their availability, they do seem to be taking reservations even while on the market.
Has anyone ever done a vacation rental and discovered this kind of situation? Once we’re closer to deciding on a budget, an island, and a house, I’d like to get the rental locked down fairly early (thinking early this summer for next spring) just so we can pick an exact date and send Save-The-Date Cards. I would hate to reserve a house, have it sell, and then be stuck having to line up a new reservation in another town.
The reason I felt compelled to ask is because my top house choice for Oahu was featured in a more recent sales listing on Zillow, and the new photos showed it stripped of furniture! Yet, they still have dates listed as “booked” on one of the rental listing sites.
Clearly, I won’t sign any contracts if things like furniture are missing or there isn’t a refund policy in place. Regardless, I’d hate to have to send out follow-up Save-The-Date Cards saying we changed our city if we have to switch houses.
Post # 3
If you have a contract to rent the place, the contract should be sold with the house. I was looking at buying a vacation rental and talked to a realtor who mentioned that she suggests the sellers keep the place rented as it is more appealing to potential buyers to see the expected income and rent potential. If you see the house for sale, just ask what that would mean if it sells, before you sign the contract.
Post # 4
@slicey19: Thanks for sharing your experience. I wasn’t sure since another house I looked at on the Big Island was touted as just having returned to the market as a vacation home after the last owners kept it a fully private residence for years.
If any of the other daytime bees have experience with vacation rentals, I’d love to hear them. I’ve never tried it before since we don’t really travel with a group. I tend to opt for either hotels with the Fiance or bed and breakfasts. But, when looking for at least three bedrooms and options to keep extra costs like eating out down, a rental seems like the best option.
Post # 5
Some of our properties that we manage as vacation rentals are also for sale. It is written into our owner contracts that, in the event the house goes to contract, a rental that has been confirmed (paid in full with rental agreement received) must be accommodated. But, if we think a house has a good chance of selling quickly, we err on the side of caution and won’t rent it more than three months in advance (that is the typical time it takes to close on a sale here in the Catskill Mountains).
I recommend that you contact the owner or property manager and confirm that this is the case for this house. Then write an addendum to your rental agreement that your reservation is guaranteed, even if the house is sold before your reservation dates; that your rental contract will be included in the terms of the sale contract. Be sure it is signed by the owner/manager.
The house pictures with no furniture that you ssaw on Zillow might be old pictures that were taken for the site before the house was designated as a VR. Or the furniture was removed to make the rooms look bigger on the site. Regardless of the reason, I suggest that you confirm that the furniture in the VR site that you saw is actually the furniture you will be sitting on. And/or ask for new pictures.
Making sure a refund policy is in place is always a good idea but be clear on the terms of the refund. If you are left without a place to stay a month before your arrival, then a refund will only be so much help.. You’ll need a new place to stay… and fast. And you won’t want that stress so close to your wedding day!
If, after all your preparation, you still feel uncertain about this VR being there when you need it, I suggest you back away and go with your second choice. Anything that reduces stress around wedding time is a good thing. Knowing that your honeymoon house is 100% guaranteed means one less thing to worry about!
Post # 6
I live in a resort area where most people rent beach cottages. Pretty much ALL the cottages are always for sale. They change owners a lot, for various reasons. These places rent a year out, and it’s never been an issue. I’m pretty sure there are some legal obligations to fulfilling a rental agreement when purchasing a property. So the new owner has to honor the previous rentals, but can stipulate that after a certain date no new rentals will be accepted. That being said, MOST people buying these types of properties have every intention to continue renting them anyway. That’s typically how most people afford to have a vacation home, through supplementing the costs by rentals. The only thing that they would most likely change would be deciding to rent their property through a different rental company. However, I’m still pretty sure they’d have to honor all previous rentals before changing management companies.