DENVER (KDVR) — The tourism industry is coming back with increased demand for airline travel and those with short term rentals in Colorado, are hoping to cash in and make up for lost revenue.
During the pandemic, short-term rental licenses dropped more than 20%, but that’s changing and so are the rules for avoiding steep fines.
Eric Escudero, spokesperson for the City and County of Denver Excise and Licenses Department, told FOX31 short-term rentals “help provide extra income for people” and pointed out that a 4% increase in licenses since January indicates a rebound for the travel industry.
“It is a less costly way to visit our wonderful city,” he said.
A new law means strict oversight of short-term rentals, and for good reason. Escudero said complaints about loud parties, trash, noise and parking issues must be addressed.
“When people file a complaint with the City of Denver, we listen and we take action,” he said.
The city requires that hosts must maintain a license before renting out property and the rental must be the host’s primary residence.
“You can’t go out and buy a bunch of houses and offer them as short-term rentals, it has to be a primary residence and that protects against the cost of living increasing,” Escudero said.
Not having a license can result in a fine of up to $999. A license can be revoked after serious health and safety complaints.
With clear signs that the travel industry is coming back to life and with many setting their sights on Colorado, hosts like Buffy Gilfoil are looking forward to a successful summer. Gilfoil just listed a property on Airbnb that will become available on April 30.
“You start renting because of the financial benefit but then you keep doing it because of the friends you make” she said. “It’s very restful.”
The listing is a beautiful “urban retreat with private bath” and the nightly rate is only $56.
That pretty much sums up why short-term rentals are popular on sites like Airbnb and VRBO.
“I’ve had people come in there and work for a month,” Gilfoil said.
Gilfoil tells the FOX31 Problem Solvers, she hopes her listing will be quickly booked when it becomes available on April 30 because it’s been a long year.
“My last guest checked out in early November,” she said. “It’s like we’ve all been hibernating to some extent.”
During the pandemic there was a decrease of nearly one-quarter of short-term rental licenses in the City and County of Denver.