You need to think about the timelines for recovery

I know this forum is a non random sample of self selected participants in the VR/STR rental space. I know there are instigators and trolls and maybe hotel lobbyists here (lol).

But there are folks posting here who say they are still renting to discretionary travelers (even though everyone without exception should be staying the f@ck home.) There are people who are talking about lowering prices, staying competitive, or buying more properties. There are hosts talking about if bookings for June are going to be canceled and how much they are going to get paid under the cancel policies. There are states that still don’t have stay home orders statewide. This tells me it’s going to be on the bad end of the worst case continuum.

Everyone needs to adjust their plans. It’s not really going to be safe to travel until there is herd immunity and or a tested vaccine; probably 12 to 18 months from now. Even if some people travel with their families to go see the great outdoors, many support businesses will remain closed or limited. And you will be competing with other hosts more desperate than you. Remember how disdainful we were of those who participated in the “race to the bottom?” How many hosts will now be forced to say “any money is better than no money?”

Some people here really need to prepare to go months with virtually no Airbnb income. No concerts, no ball games with spectators, no crowded beaches, limited admission at national parks, limited seating at restaurants, less discretionary income as we enter an economic contraction that could rival the Great Depression. Have any of you ever read about that period. Maybe the Cliff Notes of The Grapes of Wrath?

When people have no money and they have to travel this is where they stay:


Bravo for saying this. My husband and I are certain this is what will happen. And, like you, we would be delighted to be wrong.

We fully expect to be isolated from the world for one to two years. Yes, there might be a vaccine in a year, but how long after that will it take to ramp up production and get people immunized? And how effective will that vaccine be?

Beyond that, how many times will the wave of this pandemic circle the globe, due—in large part—to nations like ours (the US) who let it ride unchecked for weeks before doing thing one. I’ve heard talk in the US of three waves here, within the next six to nine months. What about after that? The virus isn’t going to stop in its tracks as long as there are infected people and people without immunity.

I, for one, am tired about even the qualified medical people who say “weeks, several weeks,” when the realty is “months, many months—if not years."


People who are at risk/immuno compromised like you will have to stay home and look out for themselves. Clearly our governments have neither the will nor the ability to protect everyone. We haven’t even begun to process the effects of the recession. Just now I was reading about how the NFL is still planning to have a regular season but their chief medical officer is saying it simply isn’t possible. And with no fans in the stands, how many people are unemployed/underemployed. Even if we had something like $2000 a month every month until the crisis is over like Sen. Sanders proposed, how many hosts need $10,000 a month in high season to make it?


I am banking on a year. This seems way beyond the thinking of many people. But we continue to have folks massing in the hundreds to see waterfalls. So they shut down the parks, trails, and public places. The many pay for the few.

Yet most of the hosts locally are still open for business. Including homestays. We are not the most infected country. But common sense is clearly not universal.

For a few weeks I was open to long termers. As mentioned, I believe that this is how I became symptomatic (lockdown ends Monday). Others simply refused to consider paying last month’s rent, based on what ‘might’ happen. Even though their occupations are ‘essential’. And some groups are advocating paying no rent at all, because people cannot be evicted.

Or so they say.

We have been put in a terrible situation. We are expected to accommodate no matter what. It appears we have been conscripted.

The good news here is that seniors and the disabled are the last to stiff you.

And before the virus, real estate prices were rising in the double digits.

1 Like

That’s what I’ve been saying since the first data about community spread in Seattle appeared. About 20% of our local economy is summer tourism, and about 95% of that are cruise ship passengers who are here for 8 to 16 hours each day. I lived through the 2009-2011 cruise downturn, and expect another 2 to 3 year dip. We were expecting 1.5 miilion cruise passenger here this summer, and I expect that we won’t see those kind of numbers until at least 2023, perhaps even 2025. Anyone with common sense doesn’t want to take a chance on getting quarantined on a ship in some remote location.

I haven’t blocked days, but since anyone coming here has to undergo a minimum 14 day quarantine upon arrival, I don’t expect any. I still have 2 late May bookings but I expect them to cancel since they are both Europeans.

Because of my age and underlying health conditions I don’t expect to rent to hospital temps. I was tempted, and may change my mind after talking to my doctor, but even though the Air rooms are all upstairs we share the front porch and entry foyer and that makes me nervous.

In my 2 years of operation, I have had about 95% independent travelers who come here for hiking, whale watching, kayaking, mountain climbing, and sightseeing, and 5% business travelers. Without those tourists, I don’t have much business, and there will be a lot of cheaply priced hotel rooms. I’m busy working on getting my accounts in order so I can apply for SBA disaster loan and the new unemployment insurance for the self employed once the state alters their software so that I can apply.


Just something to consider because my Airbnb is set up the same way.

I reconfigured my home so that I am using my kitchen backdoor and not sharing any common space.

I was fortunate enough that my last guest that was to check out on 3/31 had his condo moving date moved for 2 months due to the virus so he’s staying until it’s ready or when my next guest checks in at the end of I have some revenue but I am also taking a risk of a long-term renter becoming a squatter and also if he gets sick. But my other business is dead right now and I have to eat.


South Carolina doesn’t have a statewide stay at home order. All cities, most townships but few counties have SAH orders.

My area is very restrictive: In general NO STRs (exceptions for Covid19 responders), any one coming to the area (relocation, assist family, etc) must quarantine for 2 weeks, public beach access closed, congregating & rafting boats on barrier islands banned, restaurants can do delivery& carry out—-You know the rest.

I live in NC. We have a state SAH order. It is not as restrictive as the North Myrtle Beach city SAH.

I can’t speak about all states without SAH orders but SC local governments are doing the right thing.

Sadly I’m resigned to that. I’m planning to convert one of my two rentals to LTR.
I’m waiting for the guests to cancel before making the change.

I need summer rentals to pay the bills for the rest of the year…oh well at least this is temporary

I live in TX but not all parts of TX are the same. The governor was a bit of a heel dragger but my city was more ahead of the curve. My friend’s nursing home stopped visitors on 12 March. The city of Austin canceled SXSW on 6 March.
Two weeks later we were still waiting on the Governor to issue a SAH order.

Luckily El Paso is more like part of NM.

Meaning you need LTR for the summer?

@kkc Meaning you need LTR for the summer?

Fair question. My 10-12 weeks of summer rentals cover 70% of my annual expenses and mortgage.

Rentals Oct-April are hit & miss. I’ve been fortunate to have March & April bookings the past few years to help with expenses.

I’m hesitant to cancel my June & July bookings—yet. I prefer guests make the decision to cancel their reservations. If they don’t, then I will do whatever I need to do.

I may be crazy but I’m hoping for this to go the path of 2009 H1N1 with a speedy vaccine and the virus changing. (6/2009-8/2010)

People forget that With H1N1, We had no beds. ICUs were at full capacity. We Had patients in beds in the hallways and converted lounges into patient care areas. People died. The deaths tended to be attributed to pneumonia; not H1N1 because cause of death was not consistently determined. Everyone was overloaded.

World wide estimates of death were over 100,000-500,000. In the USA there were over 12,000 deaths. Testing was inconsistent so I think these are low.

We’ve been down this pandemic road before. There is no excuse for our leadership to be Unprepared.

Covid-19 is worse but I’m still hoping…


I was just messaging a Dr. client of mine. She still isn’t cancelling anything until flights are canceled so she can get better reimbursements from the airlines. Lots of hoping and wishing going on.

1 Like

Interesting point about some groups advocating paying no rent at all because people cannot be evicted. In Canada, tenants who have had a job loss due to corona virus restrictions may be eligible for $500 a month rent subsidy paid directly to landlords. But that’s hardly enough to cover an average month’s rent.

I host in an area where there is usually a chronic undersupply of long term housing, so the explosion in nightly rentals has resulted in criticism of homeowners. Government bylaws prohibit a long term tenant being evicted for any reason other than the land lord assuming the property to live in and they must live there six months from the eviction or pay the tenant 12 months rent.

I had been thinking of renting some rooms out to get around the long term tenant issue, but now I just realized according to justMandi that those tenants would also likely be able to refuse to pay rent but stay in the property until the designated time that we had agreed to, while the electricity bills, etc all accumulate.

It truly is a terrible situation for the homeowners who bought a second property as a retirement home and do nightly rentals as a way to cover the mortgage.

1 Like

In Ontario, room rental is not covered by the Tenant Protection Act if you share a kitchen ot a bathroom with them. This could be challenged–welfare, for example, insists it’s not true. But otherwise. It’s a gimme.

The new laws are not as clear. They will try to keep a tenant under roof no matter what. There was a situation recently however where a tenant was quarreling with a lease holder and put out. If you are in close quarters, your peace of mind comes first. But apparently, not paying rent is not a factor. This is weird, because people rendered unemployed should be getting money shortly. Are we still expected to accommodate them for free?

The solution is a curious one. Accommodatomg people who are senior or on a disability get regular income. Price it to a level they can afford, and they usually work out to be long termers. Less rotation means less risk.

My concern is if I take on a long term tenant, the rules are such where I live that it may be impossible for me to return to nightly rentals.

The safety is not the worst problem. In 3-6 month it will be relatively safe to travel. Intercontinental travel will be limited due to (unrealistic) fears of travelers.

The economic crises will have the biggest impact, many people will have lost their jobs and will have no money to travel.

But this all doesn’t have to be a bad thing, it will thin the herd. We all knew this tourism bubble had to pop at one point for whatever reason.
This exponential growth of people traveling and the ridiculous expectations of travelers had to end somewhere.

What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, the same goes for this economic crisis.


I think even now it’s relatively safe to do certain kinds of travel. It’s all the in between like people eating in restaurants, going to movies, shows, museums, fairs. And you can call it unrealistic (why? because people should be happy with a 1% mortality rate always and everywhere forever?) but many people aren’t going to want to get on planes, buses, boats where everyone is crowded together. We have multiple cases where an entire regional outbreak is because one person went to Wuhan, 2 funerals caused an entire county to be sick, one church wouldn’t stop meeting. It’s not going to be safe until there is a vaccine or herd immunity and we won’t get to herd immunity without millions dead (according to the best experts at this time)

Another factor in the US is the inept national government. Big stimulus can be passed, the government can finally realize the severity of the situation but they are truly incompetent. They can’t even properly manage one infected aircraft carrier. Confusion about when, how and who gets the paltry $1200 stimulus check is in our news daily. Even after the much touted travel ban of people flying in from China, 40,000 flew directly from China into US airports. The US and China are huge drivers of the US economy and ours is going to be a freaking mess.

Regional travel for a place like yours may bounce back some. But until there is a vaccine the crowded bars at the base of the slopes should remain closed. There should be limits on the lifts. So how many people want to go out to ski and come back to drink with their family on their balcony? For you, I hope a lot, but overall there will be lower numbers.

For once I agree 100%. I’ve thought it would be due to the climate crisis. Crowds of people racing in boats to see dolphins or in bush vehicles to see a pride of lions is bad for planet and unneccesary for humans.

I think your business should be well positioned to thrive if you can make it through this year or two.

Tourists were out in China is droves this holiday weekend. So hopefully we follow a similar timeline. I feel like drive to destinations may recover sooner compared to fly to destinations. I had one guest call about a July stay asking about cancellation policy, while at the same time very much hoping everything is back to normal as she is going crazy with cabin fever.

We can’t possibly follow a similar timeline without following a similar behavior pattern. I’m not going to go do all the research but I believe if you do it you will find that no state has followed a timeline close to Hubei province and the US has not followed a China timeline. In addition the tracking that China does via cell phone and other methods is not even possible under current US law.

When we give up our freedom to the extent that the Chinese have then we can start in on comparisons.


Yes, but at the same time china has 5 times the population density compared to the US. It will not spread as easily in less dense areas.

But we have 5 times the “density” of China.

I don’t feel that you’ve remained very well informed about this so I’ll withdraw, it’s just too much and too many.

Let me leave you with the suggestion that you should prepare for a very bad summer. I very sincerely wish you the best and hope I’m wrong. Please come back in July and taunt me. I’ll be overjoyed to be wrong.


Do they track individuals? I imagine so? I know that our governor mentioned today that they are tracking movement within the state through cell phones - to monitor how much travel is taking place. But that the information doesn’t identify individuals. Anyway, I thought it was kind of cool. She also personally drove around this weekend looking for people going against the stay at home orders, lol. They are going to give out fines!