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Using VRBO and runnin afowl of condo association rules

Using VRBO and runnin afowl of condo association rules

Old Aug 23rd, 2013, 12:21 PM
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It's not allowed in my condo building. But no I don't think VRBO asks to read over your CC&Rs!
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Old Aug 23rd, 2013, 04:11 PM
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we did not actually seize the apt. just made it impossible for her to sublet it - and then she couldn't afford it (since she had moved to ca) and had to sell very shortly
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Old Aug 24th, 2013, 03:36 AM
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And as a condo owner I can tell you one of several) reason(s) why many associations do not allow either short or longer term rentals: when a certain percentage of condo units are rented out the banks start to get "concerned" and more reluctant to lend people money to finance a purchase of a unit in the condo. So yes, it is all about the money.

I know this because in my condo that is exactly what has happened. And fines have already been assessed, and I mean BIG ones.
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Old Aug 24th, 2013, 07:19 AM
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It's more than "concern", it's Fannie/Freddie rules they have to follow if they're not keeping the loan in their own portfolio. We also had this problem (although it was with 'real' renters and not short-term renters, just too high a percentage of the building was rented out)
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Old Aug 24th, 2013, 07:20 AM
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I lived in a condo once for 3 years and I have to say, never again. Or at least not as long as I am still physically able to maintain my own property.

Condos like many things, follow the Pareto Principle (80/20 rule). You can expect 80% of the problems to come from 20% of the residents. Furthermore, I would suggest that you can expect 80% of those problems to come from renters, both long and short term.

I have no issue with people who rent a place to live. Not everyone can afford to buy their own home after all. But there is a psychological difference in how someone who rents thinks vs. someone who owns. That difference means the two groups will have different expectations, ideas, goals, norms, etc. and are not likely to mix well together.

As a condo board member I once had a renter come and knock on my door to tell me there was a fluorescent light not working in the underground garage, right above his parking spot. He went on to tell me in an angry tone that he did not like his wife to have to park the car in a darkened area. He was very indignant indeed.

I told him to phone his absentee landlord who lived over a 1000 miles away and complain to him and ask him to come and change the fluorescent tube.

Condos generally do not have a 'super' or maintenance person as already mentioned. Generally, some outside help is employed, usually for cleaning hallways, lobbies, etc. but a lot of things are done by volunteer owners themselves. In my limited 3 years experience, I never saw one renter or one absentee owner volunteer for anything.

I should have told that guy that if he wanted to volunteer to maintain the lighting in the garage we would give him the job.
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Old Aug 24th, 2013, 08:24 AM
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Depends. I live in a large condo building (100+ units) now (we rent from the unit owner) and there is not only an onsite manager, there is a full-time maintenance person. We are moving to a condo we purchased where there is a 24-hour management presence (not sure about maintenance person yet). OTOH, we own a condo in a 13-unit building where we are the absentee owners and even that one is managed by an off-site, but third-party paid management company.
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Old Aug 24th, 2013, 08:28 AM
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Yes, renters in condos or co-ops can be a problem for lots of reasons.

Co-ops are usually stricter. We allow an owner to sublet long-term - once, for up to 2 years. Period. After that they have to live in the apartment of leave it empty. And any subletter has to go through a full resident approval process, which means providing the managing agent with full financial (to ensure they can afford the mortgage and maintenance) information, passing financial and criminal checks and undergoing an interview with board members.

This is how we ensure that apartments are bought for residential rather than investment purposes - and that we know and can trust our neighbors.

Besides the issues of banks refusing mortgages if more than a few apts are rentals (we have 3 renters still living in apts from before the building went co-op 30 years ago.) And when these renters leave the apts can only be sold - not rented again.

Obviously week at a time subletting vacationers are not a part of this plan.
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Old Aug 24th, 2013, 02:06 PM
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VRBO is just a place to advertise, basically, like a newspaper, why would they employ staff to check condo rules. They can't even control fake rentals totally.

I think these are illegal in Paris, as someone wondered, because the last time I rented a vacation apt. there, the owner told me it was and that if anyone asked who I was, I was supposed to pretend to be a relative or something staying there. And I have read some news articles about that, also (Paris passing laws against it). What is interesting is how there are so many local agencies doing just that and yet the Parisian govt doesn't do anything about shutting them down even though they are totally obvious and on the internet. I guess it's true in NY, also.
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Old Aug 25th, 2013, 05:15 AM
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OK, I'm going to describe a way owners get around the assoc. rules on shorter term rentals. I am not advocating use of the ploy, just describing it.

Suppose the assoc. rules say rentals must be a minimum of one month, and someone wants to rent for a week (for, say, $1000). Of course, the renter leaves after a week. If there's a complaint about it, the owner just says, "Hey, I rented it for a month. He decided to leave after a week."

If you say, "But the renter could then decide to stay for a month," I would point out how unlikely that is, since the renter knows the term is for a week and, normally, does have a life to get back to.

Don't shoot the messenger.
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Old Aug 25th, 2013, 07:53 AM
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Like Christina said, VRBO is just a listing site. They are not a rental agency themselves. I don't think they screen anything?
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Old Aug 25th, 2013, 08:34 AM
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Vincenzo, well, that would work if the owner only wanted to rent it 12 times a year. What he couldn't do is rent it for a month, have the renter leave after a week, and re-rent it the following week, because the first 1-month lease is still in effect. If he were to tear up the first lease and re-rent it, it's very clear he couldn't make his case that he actually rented it for a month.
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Old Aug 25th, 2013, 09:16 AM
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Vincenzo - that works only if the association/building allows one-month rentals. That is very rare. Usually they allow only longer, stable rentals - a minimum of 6 months or so - s you would get if the owner takes a sabbatical from their job or whatever.

And many co-op and associations allow only one or two sublets for each owner - not multiple rentals of a month at a time. The whole purpose is to have stability in the community - not a continual rotation of transients.
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Old Aug 25th, 2013, 02:37 PM
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Vast numbers of VRBO condo rentals are in communities that are vacation specific, that is, the condos were purchased as income property (and when sold that is advertised as a perk).
I've never had a problem with a condo rental, but I make sure I check them out (a search for bad comments in other places by the address) and talk to a live person.
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Old Aug 26th, 2013, 07:56 AM
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No issue with a vacation rental specific property sylvia. It is the NOT vacation specific rentals that are the topic. Along with the profit before responsibility of the third parties providing access to them.
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Old Aug 26th, 2013, 09:45 AM
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Our building has a cap that no more than 2 units can be rentals at any one time (it's only a 6 unit building).
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