Short-term rentals, HOA rules contributing to high rents
BOCA RATON, Fla. – New research from Florida Atlantic University indicates that an abundance of short-term vacation rentals and restrictions imposed by homeowners’ and condo associations are contributing to the state’s rental crisis.
Ken H. Johnson, a real estate economist and associate dean of graduate programs at Florida Atlantic University, said rentals listed on Airbnb and similar websites are keeping units out of an already depleted housing stock.
Many HOAs across the state are also preventing landlords from renting their homes in the first year or prohibiting rentals altogether, contributing to the housing crisis.
“These two take-out units could be rented out to the public, and it’s the shortage of available units that’s driving rental rates up,” Johnson said. “While developers and local governments clearly need to build more units, that’s not the only solution to this problem.”
The latest searches found that while rental prices are falling across much of the country, Florida is still home to nine of the 21 most expensive markets in the United States.
Cape Coral-Fort Myers renters lead the nation in paying 18.05% above trend for long-term rentals.
Several other Florida cities, including Miami, North Port, Tampa, Orlando, Deltona-Daytona Beach, Palm Bay-Melbourne, Jacksonville, Lakeland, also have some of the highest rental costs in the country.
The average rental premium paid in the United States is 7.40%.
FAU data estimates that the average monthly rent in South Florida is about $400 higher than you would expect, a 14% year-over-year increase.
“As a state, we need to realize that the current rental crisis is hurting our potential for economic growth and making it increasingly difficult for service workers to live within reasonable distances of their jobs,” Johnson said.
Given the steep rise in rents over the past two years, owners of short-term rentals could find better returns by converting their properties to long-term rentals, according to Johnson.
He added that HOA boards choosing to relax or eliminate rental restrictions would increase property values for their residents.
Dawn Adams is among those looking for an apartment on the Treasure Coast.
“A 2/1 at this time is as high as around $2,100 to $2,500 in a nice area,” Adams said.
Finding a new apartment turned into an expensive hunt for Adams, which was frustrating.
Adams is looking for a home for his mother, who currently pays just under $800 a month in Fort Pierce.
“I think this is a situation where not only my mother, but many other citizens of St. Lucie County and Indian River County, feel very stuck,” she said.