Being an Airbnb Landlord Isn’t For Everyone

The following is an excerpt from an article by Mike Akerly, who is a New York City real estate attorney, landlord, and real estate broker. He is also the publisher of the Greenwich Village blog VillageConfidential.

by Mike Akerly | 8/16/12 – 2:49 PM

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Q. I am a small landlord with a couple of condos in Manhattan. I am considering turning one or both of my properties into short-term rentals and rent them out through Airbnb.com and VRBO.com. From what I can tell, I can collect more rent this way than if they are simply rented out on long-term leases.

What issues should I be aware of before getting started?

A. Short-term rentals can be highly profitable but they are management intensive and, for this and a variety of other reasons, may not be the best choice for an NYC condo owner.

For instance, most condo bylaws have restrictions on the type of leases that can be entered into. It is common for the bylaws to restrict lease terms to no less than one year, though some condos have adopted more lenient rental policies by permitting three to six month leases. It is very unlikely that you would be permitted to rent the unit for a term shorter than three months.

Also remember that the condominium has a right of first refusal in the event that you choose to rent or sell the apartment. That means that after you enter into a lease, you must submit it and an application from the prospective renter to the board, which will have a legal right to rent the property in place of your prospective tenant.

Read the entire article here.

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