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Residential Real Estate
Jun 3, 2022

2022 Vacation Rentals New Normal?

Sponsored Content provided by Mike Harrington - CEO & Owner, Carolina Retreats

The pandemic took the wind out of all our sails. When it swooped down in March of 2020, it was terrifying to many. COVID upended nearly every aspect of our lives and made us question choices we previously took for granted. Every person, every business, and every industry was affected. Between mid-March and the end of June 2020, 49 million new unemployment claims were filed. According to Yelp.com, 180,000 businesses closed temporarily at the beginning of the pandemic and 60% of those became permanent closures. While we all suffered, there were several industries that took the brunt of the pandemic hit- especially healthcare, restaurants, and airlines. Also at the top of the list is the hospitality industry. In the first weeks of the pandemic, 80% of hotel rooms sat empty. It was not as easy to track those numbers for the vacation rental industry, but it is known that many of the smaller companies suffered tremendous losses as well.
 
The Massive 2021 Rebound in Vacation Rental Demand
 
Those guests who were still able to travel quickly realized (with the help of some innovative marketing), that vacation rentals were the safest option available. The impact of the dynamics during that time can’t be overstated.  
 
While Covid numbers have stabilized and even decreased in many markets, I believe that the residual caution is here to stay. Guests like the increased control and lack of shared spaces that vacation rentals offer. They have also found that it’s nice to share your space with your friends and family, while still being able to maintain privacy with separate bedrooms and sometimes, additional living and/or game rooms in which to gather.
 
These past two years since Covid-19 unleashed, we have made an incredible comeback. In fact, here on the coast of North Carolina, the evidence of our resilience is remarkable. While we can’t yet say that the pandemic is in our rearview mirror, we can say that a vacation at our beautiful beaches appears to be taking precedence over Covid-19 fears. Both the numbers and my intuition tell me that the floor of vacation rental demand has now been reset from pre-Covid days. We at Carolina Retreats are thrilled to see that our reservation numbers are higher than they were in 2019, prior to the beginning of Covid, though not quite where they were in 2021.
 
Even though our reservation numbers are extremely high, there are still some vacancies, so if you have been thinking about a Topsail Island vacation this summer, don’t wait! 
 
Carolina Retreats properties are in destinations that offer many unique experiences.  If you would like to learn more about Carolina Retreats’ vacation and short-term rental management program email us at [email protected]
or call (844) 567-9779.


Mike Harrington is the CEO & Owner of Carolina Retreats, a specialty lodging and vacation rental management firm serving more than 300 vacation property owners throughout the Cape Fear region. Before founding Carolina Retreats in 2015, Mike spent 10 years on the Outer Banks as CEO and General Manager of Resort Realty, a high end real estate sales and vacation rental company with 600 properties under management, five offices, and more than 100 full-time employees and real estate agents. Mike is a Past-President and Board Member of the Vacation Rental Manager's Association (VRMA), the largest international trade association for the vacation rental industry, as well as Past-President for the North Carolina Vacation Rental Manager's Association (NCVRMA). He is frequently asked to speak at seminars and trade conferences on the latest vacation rental management trends in marketing, operations, and strategy. Mike holds a MBA from East Carolina University, as well as a Bachelor's Degree in Business Management and serves as an Advisory Board member for East Carolina's School of Hospitality Leadership.
 
 

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