Vacation/Short-term Rental Real Estate Investing (SHOULD YOU?) PODCAST

Vacation/Short-term Rental Real Estate Investing (SHOULD YOU?) PODCAST

– Hey, guys, this is Toby Mathis with the Anderson
Business Advisors Podcast. And today we’re joined by Heather Connor and it’s gonna be really
fun ’cause Heather is, not only is she involved in real estate, but she is involved in a very
specific type of real estate that not everybody understands and that is kinda the
short-term rental market and the vacation real estate market. Granted, she has a very diverse
background in real estate. But this is kind of
fantastic, to have somebody. So welcome, Heather. – Toby, thanks for having me. – Yeah, tell us a little
bit about yourself. Where you grew up, first off, and how you got into real estate. – Yeah, absolutely. So, I currently live in
Crested Butte, Colorado. Which is a phenomenal skiing place. – Mmm-hmm. – I grew up in Washington State and my whole family, we grew up skiing in what’s called Snoqualmie Pass. It’s kind of four mountains in one. – Mmm-hmm. – Huge ski bum family. My dad had a ski school
there for 25 years. My brother was in ski
racing, I was in ski racing. We both went into coaching. And then, when I moved to Crested Butte, I still loved the skiing
aspect, then at some point, realized I was going to have
to have a real job here, so. (laughing) And enter my background as
far as management roles date. – Yeah, so you basically,
besides just regular real estate, you focus very specifically. You have a bunch of rental properties or something like that in Crested Butte? Tell us what you do? – Sure. So the history of it is that I actually, when I first moved to Crested Butte, I started off in the service industry, just like most folks here. And that’s not really a
sustainable type of job for living here in the future. You know, living in a resort community comes with some expenses. And so, during that time frame, I was starting to invest in property. I’d just purchased my
first two rental units. That was back in 2005. – OK. – And as well, I was also bartending. So I was bartending, trying
to live off of my paychecks. Which are very low here, in the Colorado area. And then save my tips. And save up a down payment. So I purchased my two rentals and then I had to learn
how to manage them. And landlord tenant law does not matter, whether you’re new or seasoned,
it still applies to you. – Yep. – And there’s a lot to be aware of. To make sure that you’re
following the rules. So that is about the time
frame that I thought, well, if I have to know all this anyways, I might as well, maybe, just pick up a few more
properties to manage. – Very cool. Do you manage much properties now? – We do. So we have two businesses. We have Watchdog Property Management and that is, it’s gone
through a couple of phases, as far as the services we offer and we’ve really zoned in on
what our specialty area is and there’s been help through my coach. I have coaching out in the LA area. Dan Sullivan, he’s a teacher, coach. And I kinda went in like, gosh,
we’re kinda doing everything and it’s a little bit of a mess and I’m really tired all the time. Like, we need to fix this. So through their program,
we really zoned in on the areas that, where I could bring the most value to our clients and the part of the business that I loved. So, for me, that’s vacation rentals. – Mmm-hmm. – Love that aspect. We have been performing those services since 2005 with Watchdog. And there’s been a lot of changes in the industries since
when we first started. A lot of changes not only in legislation but also in the type of folks that actually utilize rentals now. – Yeah, what are the, you
know, kinda get into that. That’s more interesting. Who’s utilizing these rentals now, ’cause I always looked at it, it was like unless you knew somebody, I probably wouldn’t have ever done it. Now, you have so many things online that you’re able to go
in there and grab stuff from the Airbnb’s to the VRBO’s. What have you seen as the,
what’s the sweet spot right now? – Yeah, so what’s been
interesting is that, back in the day, in 2005, there were not very many people in vacation renting at all. The town wasn’t really aware of it. There weren’t any rules
or regulations around it. They weren’t licensing. And folks could just go
onto sites and advertise. – Mmm-hmm. – Back then, I just remember that, I think a lot of folks forget that the company, Airbnb, it’s actually somewhat of a newer idea. It’s just caught on like wildfire. Those guys in San Francisco. You know, I wanna say, they’re only about 11 ish years old, if that sounds crazy. Considering how popular it is these days. So, back in the day, 2005. You know, folks weren’t really
that savvy on what it was, so it was kind of that
adventurous type of personality that would say, yeah,
I’d rather stay in a home and let’s just see what this is like. And there weren’t any rhyme, reason. There wasn’t much as far
as safety regulations, as far as the rental checklist. And back then, the clientele. When they booked, they
almost always showed up. We never had cancellations. And two, the type of person
that came to Crested Butte, they were very relaxed,
is the good way to say it. – Mmm-hmm. – They really didn’t care much about the accommodation itself. They just wanted it to have heat. Or windows, if it was summer. (laughing) Have a bed, technically. And they really just came here
to go hiking, biking, skiing. As Crested Butte has
changed over the years, and as vacation rentals have
gained steam and popularity, not only are there more rentals that are being ran more professionally. And as well, there are… (dog barking) Can you hear my dog in
the background here? – I can hear that. I was gonna laugh and say you have a fan who’s, like, barking at you. – (Laughing) I have two rescue dogs. They’re here to support
me in this podcast. (laughing) – Awesome! – (Laughing) – Put ’em on! (laughing) – Perfect. Well they’re cuter, so
I can put them on later. (laughing) – Ah! (laughing) – (Laughing) – So, give us the
progression because, like, I’ve dealt with vacation rental and like, you really couldn’t drag me back into it, unless I decided that
was gonna be my thing. – Right. – So, how did it end up being your thing? Like, you had to really,
you had to zone in on this thing, right? – I did. I zoned in and at the time, you know, I went through a lot
of different phases of, you know, who I’m going
to be when I grow up. And I’m still, even today, still kind of moving through
those phases of, what’s next? – Mmm-hmm. – So, Watchdog was a
really big jumping point. It was my first real business. There were a lot of learning curves there. And it went through a
lot of metamorphosis. The vacation rental portion. It was really fun back then. People just would show up. They were really easy going. They– – Is that different now? So you’ve said like, they
were much more relaxed and they always showed up. So now I’m gonna contrast
that, I’m gonna interpret it. That that means that under Airbnb, sometimes they don’t show up and sometimes they’re a
little more high maintenance? – Yeah, so we’ve seen a lot of
changes in our industry here. One is that the type of person that will rent through Airbnb. It’s pretty, it’s pretty mainstream now. So the idea of renting a house or a condo instead of a hotel, nobody really blinks an eye. So number one, as far as the
type of person that will rent. It’s really opened up to
include all demographics and all types of income styles. You know, there’s luxury
properties, there’s affordable. Everything in between. – Mmm-hmm. – Another thing that’s happened, is that what folks are looking for is that little cutesy, the
owner just left for the weekend, all their clothes are in the closet and you just crash there
for 50 bucks a night. Folks aren’t really looking for that here. Our type of clientele has really become a little bit more particular
about the finishes. So what I mean by that is, as Crested Butte has gained in popularity, and we were just purchased
by Vail last year, so that also put us more on the radar, ’cause now we’re part of the Epic Pass. – Mmm-hmm. – So we’re seeing more folks come here that didn’t visit Crested
Butte traditionally, prior. – Mmm-hmm. – And, you know, their
requirements for an accommodation are pretty top of the line. So they’re looking for
absolutely something that is a private home, but
it is managed professionally and it’s handled professionally. – Mmm-hmm. Wow, so this gets into some
interesting things then. What would bring most value to listeners is probably saying, “Hey, if I’m already in this space or if I’m thinking of
going into this space, what should I be aware of?” Like, what are the dos and don’ts. And, you know, we could start with, “Hey, I already have a, like,
I went on vacation somewhere. Maybe I went skiing in Crested Butte.” – Right. – “And I got excited and
I picked up a property.” I imagine that happens sometimes. – Right. – And somebody says, “Well, I just love it, so
I’m gonna pick up a condo or I’m gonna pick up a house and I’ll rent it for part of the year and then I’ll come up there and I’ll use it a month of the year. And basically it’s paying for that.” What would you say to somebody
who’s considering doing that? – Absolutely. So part one is to make
sure that you identify a property that works
for your lifestyle goals that you’re looking for. If it’s going to be an
actual vacation home. And then, a lot of folks
actually combo a vacation home with an investment property out here. That’s a very common thing that we see. – Mmm-hmm. – And so, there’s going to
be a couple of questions you’re going to have, as far as, is this the right property
for me when I come out? And I want to stay here. And then two, will it
meet whatever my income or investment goals are for this property? – Mmm-hmm. – So, as you know, there’s
two different ways. One could be, how much income it brings in to offset expenses. Or the other could be also
or in combination with that. And that’s how much does it appreciate– – Mmm-hmm. – How they hold it. So it’s really important
that you have someone that has that proper data. – How has Crested Butte done? Like, has it been going up
nicely on the appreciation side or is it really more of a cashflow thing? – Traditionally, Crested Butte has been, it’s really been up and down. We’re a resort community and we always tend to follow
suit, any major cities. So Denver is our closest major city. And what that means is that because we’re a resort community, we tend to follow trends in leg time, based on our closest city. However, then we also
have our unique climate and our unique factors that affect us. So we’re like this little micro market. And then our micro market has
micro markets beyond that. ‘Cause Crested Butte as a whole then also has Mount Crested
Butte, town of Crested Butte and then we move into the rural areas, all the way down to Gunnison. And they are all performing differently. So, I would say that, for example, once Vail announced the purchase and actually purchased
Crested Butte Mountain Resort, since 2018 to current day, 2019, condos up on the mountain have increased. Like, they’ve been jumping
up 20% and then 40%– – Wow. – In valuation. It’s been pretty phenomenal. We have started to see
that, all across the board, values are increasing. That is pretty typical
across the U.S. right now. Some markets are a
little bit more dramatic in their increase than others. But we definitely have micro areas that are increasing at a more rapid rate and that would be Mount
Crested Butte Condos is probably our biggest hotspot right now, for what’s selling. – Mmm-hmm. How about, what should somebody
expect as far as cashflow, if they’re getting a vacation property? We can use Crested Butte, but just as a, kind of as a rule of thumb
or, if you don’t have on you, if you just wanna focus on
Crested Butte, that’s fine too. I’m just kinda curious as to
what somebody should expect. They buy a $200,000 condo or
something along those lines. What should they expect to get out of it? – (Exhales) So, what
people could anticipate, as far as cashflow, back when
we first started versus now? It’s really different. Back in 2005, folks could
cover their mortgage. – Mmm-hmm. – By vacation renting. ‘Cause you have to remember
when you’re vacation renting, you’re taking on all day
expenses, the day to day expenses as well as capital improvements, just to kinda start your
little rental business. – Mmm-hmm. – Now, for folks now, when you look at the potential
capital improvements, as well as the day to
day expenses that happen. Your utilities, HOA duties, if applicable. Replacing furnishings,
utilities, et cetera. I find that most folks do not cashflow, regardless of how great
of a realtor you have. – Mmm-hmm. – Now, really what you’re
looking is to offset expenses. So I would say that you’re
hitting right on target. That you could probably offset about half of your total expenses. – Oh, wow! So you’re gonna have a
little bit of negative there. So basically, hey, if you’re
gonna get a vacation rental, don’t expect to make it a big cash pile. It’s because you really wanna go there and you’re gonna use it and you’re trying to offset
some of your expenses? Does that, I mean… – Pretty close. Yeah, I mean there are some
folks that are still able to kinda squeak that line, but it does take a lot of effort and it takes somebody
that probably is ready to take on some of the work themselves. – Right. – It even occurred that
I just closed on a house. Purchased it for $800,000. Probably putting about, maybe $200,000 in
improvements on the property and I would reckon that, you know, they’ll pull in about around $100,000. And that’s prior to
any of their utilities. – Mmm-hmm. – They paid for as well,
the management expenses. If you don’t live next to your rental. In case your rental
managers are going to be anywhere from 15 to 35, 40%. – Mmm-hmm. Wow! 15 to 30, wow. That’s actually pretty, well,
again, you’re turning over. Like, what’s the typical
rent there, like, period. Is it three days, four days, five days? What’s the typical period of
time somebody’s gonna be there? – Depends. In the summer, folks will
stay anywhere from three days to renting a property
for the entire summer. So 90 days. 60 to 90 days. The folks that rent 30 to 60 days, they will pay the premium rate. So they’ll pay the $20,000 each month to have that house for
those prime periods. In the winter, they tend
to be shorter stays. And they tend to be more
around three to seven days. – And is it mostly the skiing
crowd during the winter and then you have the biking
crowd during the summer? Hiking, biking. – Exactly. So we have, this year, we’re seeing more of that Epic Pass folks
coming and visiting. And then, we’re also seeing
a lot more front rangers. So folks from the Denver, Boulder area. – Mmm-hmm. – And that connection
when the economy crashed, we started seeing more local Coloradans coming to visit Crested Butte because they couldn’t afford to fly to their traditional vacation spots. – Mmm-hmm. – So, their impression is actually when we had folks coming and when the local Colorado community really started to visit Crested Butte. – OK. So, let’s say that you’re interested in getting into vacation rentals. So, this is what you
do for a living, right? You sit there and manage
vacation properties. If somebody is walking in,
is on the investment side and they’re not gonna
manage their own property but they could be buying a property anywhere that would be kind
of a vacation destination. What are the rules of thumbs
that you would tell ’em to make sure that they’re
maximizing their return. You know, everything from “Hey, make sure that your
property looks halfway decent, so you’re not just taking pretty
snapshots of the interior. Like, what are the rules of
thumb that you would use, that you would tell somebody, “Hey, this is what you need
to do, to do it right.” – Yeah, absolutely. So, there’s definitely a lot
that is in your own court, as far as what you can do
to maximize your success. I would say that the top six
things that I would recommend. – Mmm-hmm. – So that you’re actually maximizing your potential income on your rental. – Mmm-hmm. – One, take time to
properly stage your property with your furnishings. – Mmm-hmm. – I see folks that will purchase
a place that came furnished and that furnishing might be outdated. And they’re like, you know what, just for the season, we’re
just going to keep it. And they don’t realize how
much that that older furniture, that outdated furniture or the poor layout of what’s currently in place. It actually really
affects their bottom line. Even for that one season. – Mmm-hmm. – So make sure that you
take time to furnish and that your property shows properly. And then, in combination
with that, number two, is once you take that effort, then make sure you get
professional photographs. You know, they say that
over 80% of folks are visual and your property is most
likely going to be booked online purely from the photographs. – Mmm-hmm. – So once you take the time
to make it visually appealing, make sure that you hire a professional to make sure that it actually
shows its best online and captures the widest audience. – Mmm-hmm. – And with that being said, as well. Just a friendly reminder that the majority of folks that
book these are females. Actually, they’re the ones that are online and you want to make this appealing to, they look at it and they
say, this is what I stand by. – How do you know that
the majority is women? Like, is that just what
you found from yours, ’cause that is actually a
really interesting fact, if that’s the case. – Yeah– – Mostly– – Yeah. (laughing) What you find is, if you
look at the majority of, when you look at, I don’t
have the data in front of me, but when you look at who,
typically, is the highest. Which gender shops the most? It’s the women. – Sure. – Who buys the most men’s clothing? And it’s usually the
wife or the girlfriend. That buys the clothing for the man. For vacations, even
though Crested Butte is, I would say people first kinda see it as a male dominated type of ski resort because a lot of folks that come here is like ski guy, guy ski vacations. – Mmm-hmm. – You know, mountain
men that come out here. And even if that’s the
case, a lot of times, their wives are still on there helping them book the property. – Mmm-hmm. – And they will first go off of places that they feel like, that
look visually appealing. – Mmm-hmm. I never even thought about that. That actually makes a lot of sense. So keep going on. Sorry about that. – (Laughing) And that actually just goes right into the next point is, think about what’s
important to your renters. So in Crested Butte, we are a huge dog community,
outdoor community. So folks that love to come
out here and hike and ski, they want to be able to bring their pet. So, if your HOA allows it or if, you know, their property allows it. And as long as you don’t
have any allergies, if you can make it pet friendly, that’s going to be a huge bonus for you. And there’s little weird things too. For example, for us, a king bed will make or break your rental. It’s the strangest thing. But if there are two identical units and one has a king bed
and one has a queen bed, the king bed will, at the end of the year, severely outperform the
property with the queen bed. – So maybe it’s just making sure that you get a king bed in there. – Llaughing) – It’s interesting. The little things make a huge difference. I learned that with ours. And we have a couple of
vacation rentals where, you get ’em not because you’re planning on renting ’em out all the time, but then you end up doing it and then you realize
that you better make sure you know how to do it right. And it is, it’s like the littlest things and it’ll make all the difference. It’ll be 20 or 30% difference in bookings. – Absolutely. When you look at 20 or
30%, that’s a lot of money. – Yeah, really. – Yeah, leave it on the table. Yeah. I would say the next
thing to keep in mind. Number four is know your
local laws and stay updated. They are constantly evolving,
so know your local laws– – Is that what a property manager does? Is that what you should
be expecting them to do or is that something you need to do? – I would say both. Ideally, in a perfect world, you have vetted your property manager and they are professional. This is what they do
for a living, full-time. And they genuinely do stay on top of laws and what, you know, they stay on top of the statistics of
what’s renting, what’s not. What’s the feedback
they’ve been receiving. Now, that actually lends itself to a really interesting point, because there are different types of property managers out there and they’re not all created equal. – Mmm-hmm. – You have folks that,
I mentally, kind of, think of them in, I’m
getting off topic here but, I mentally categorize them in
three different categories. – Mmm-hmm. – One is that person
that, they work from home, they work off their cellphone,
they drive their vehicle. You know, it’s just them. Maybe them and their wife. – Mmm-hmm. – You know, they are who you get and they tend to be the most affordable, ’cause they have the lowest overhead. They may or may not be insured and most likely, they are,
kind of, doing the day to day and running this as an at-home business, but they’re not actually
going to seminars, staying educated, reading
the laws at night, making sure that you’re protected. They’re just kind of the neighbor friend that’s helping you out almost. – Yeah. – Yeah. And then, those folks, I would say that, don’t depend on them to stay updated. They’re probably not going to. – No, I would agree 100%. That’s like having your uncle Ned do it. You’re giving uncle Ned
a little bit of money but you’re getting a discount,
but it’s your uncle Ned. – Right. So, and then, on the complete
opposite end of the spectrum, you have larger companies. For us, that’s like the resort. There’s a couple other
companies where they rent out the majority of an entire complex. And those are the ones
where’ll you see that there is a photo of one property that is meant to represent multiple. And they’ll just rent the
property that is available and it may or may not look the same, but it’s similar and
it’s in the same complex. And those companies, you know, they tend to stay really
on top of legislation laws. They have individuals that are working in each specific area of their expertise. And they can be great and
sometimes, for some folks, they feel like they can get lost and feel a little anonymous. – You’re in a pool in that one, right? You know, hey, there’s 20 properties and how do you make sure yours is the one that gets picked? I already know what they’re doing. They’re gonna say the one
that makes them the most money with the least amount of aggravation. So if you’re, for whatever reason, your unit has a problem
dishwasher, whatever. They’re gonna quit renting yours because they don’t wanna deal
with the problem dishwasher. – That’s a good point. And it might take them a week or two. To fix that simple thing. – Oh, yeah. – What’s great about the larger companies, is that they’re going
to have, most likely, more ad-spend dollars for advertising. They’re probably going to get more traffic to their website, their office. They’re going to have more
potential to rent your property. The problem is that, pretend you went out of your way, Toby. And you and your wife just really made your place beautiful. And then the neighboring unit is just, kind of, pretty
standard and all original– – You’re not getting the
benefit of it, I get it. – You’re not seeing that
increase in the value, that you put in your own property. – We see this in Vegas. You know, you have the
MGM has its properties and people that buy down there. The best thing is, is to be hands off. – Yeah. – It’s not your unit anymore. That’s not the one you
should be staying at. – Right. – Yep. – On top of it, if you read
your management contract, with a lot of those companies, you’ll see that there
is disclosure in there that says that they will do their best to equally divide rentals
between all units. – Mmm-hmm. – Which, you know, for those of us that really like to excel
in whatever field we’re in, you know, it’s kinda like how I felt about pooling tips when I was bartending. You know, I think that
whoever really provides the best service and the best product, you should be rewarded for that. So you won’t see that. – OK. And then there’s a
middle ground, I take it? – And then there’s the middle ground and that is really varied
in size of companies and services they offer. And it’s really varied in the
percentage that they take. You will see anywhere from, probably I’d say 20% to
35% is the range there. – Mmm-hmm. – We’re on the higher end. We’re at the 35% for our companies. – Right. – For our properties. And that’s because we
chose to have a system that is very systematic, streamlined and we’re only taking
on certain properties. And then, in fact, we actually just recently did a big clearing. Anything that was not the right property and not the right owner, then, that’s no longer a part of our inventory. – Hit the brakes. – Yeah. – Yeah. You may be better off to be in a big pool. – Yeah. And what’s funny about,
so, we would be considered kinda in that middle ground. And because that middle
ground can be so varied, as far as the number of properties, how they, you know, handle things. Some offer linens, some don’t. Some will pay for advertising, some don’t. Some charge you for toilet paper and you see that on your
statement every day, some don’t. That is really across the board. So that would be really important for you to have a clear conversation about what they do or do not offer. – Mmm-hmm. – And, you know, and
how they work with you. – Yeah, that makes sense. And I could see it, so if
you’re in the middle ground, it’s kind of like this in my field. I’m an attorney by trade. If you’re gonna take on cases and you’re getting paid a contingency, you wanna case you can
actually collect on. – Right. – In real estate, I imagine
that you wanna be rewarded for bringing people into great units. So if somebody wanted to spend
very little on their unit. Be bare bones. Maybe dump it into a pool. If you really take care of your property and it’s nice accommodations and you wanna be rewarded for that, maybe you need to be in the middle ground. Would that be a fair assessment? – Yeah, and you actually bring up a point, ’cause you say ‘I’m an attorney by trade’ and what’s funny is that, I feel like when I mention
the right property, that really is easy for
folks to understand. They’re like, “Oh, OK.” You want a property that,
they take time to furnish it. – Mmm-hmm. – They take suggestions. They keep it nice, updated. They make the improvements you ask for. It’s in the right location. It’s easy to rent, right? – Yep. – It’s no effort to rent it because people are like, “Oh, that’s a great location. That’s a great property.” – Mmm-hmm. – What I think is really
interesting is that, as far as the right owner, what I’ve noticed, that has worked for us, is working with somebody… I would believe, I’ve
never worked with you, but I believe it’d still
be probably like you. We work really well with
folks that are professionals and that are experts in their own trade. – Mmm-hmm. – The reason is that, what we find out is, they’re busy, they know
where they add value and that is where they have excellent and unique
ability in that skill. And they’re not looking
to get in your lane. They say, I chose you for a reason– – Mmm-hmm. – I’m going to hand this over to you and I just want you to tell
me what you need from me and from there, you
know, you’re my expert. It’s the folks that, you know,
that they cross that lane and they try to jump back and forth, that really, actually ends
up hurting them in the end. – Yeah. You know, I’m a value person. I always tell people, you can be focused on the
money that you’re spending or the value that they’re bringing. So, like, if you say a higher percentage, that’s gonna turn off people that are focused on the money. You know, so instead of the value. Like, I’d rather pay somebody
35% of a much higher number, than 20% of something
that’s not performing. And they’ll be so focused in on, “Well this is what I pay.” Well, it’s like, you should
actually look and say, what percentage of your revenue total and what is that revenue target? So if I’m bringing in zero and I’m paying 10% because I got a bare bones manager, somehow. I still have zero. It doesn’t really matter. They’re not doing anything for you. They’re not getting you any revenue versus I’d rather pay 50% to somebody who’s keeping my
unit top dollar, paid out. That percentage isn’t the issue. It’s the, what’s the revenue? The bottom line revenue number. You got a couple more that we wanted to go through on your six things. I think that… you’ve gone through four. So let’s jump on the fifth. – Absolutely. The fifth one’s really simple. Just be quick to respond. We live in an on demand society. Folks do not like to be kept waiting and if you wait too long,
they’ve found somebody else. They’ve already accepted the reservation. Again, if you have a
property manager, then, not a big deal, you have somebody to take care of that for you. – Is the property manager able to agree or do they ever have to get
approval from the tenants? Do you deal with any of that nonsense? – Oh, you mean approval from the owners? – Yeah. – Yes. So that’s where we talked
about who’s the ideal client. The ideal client is a
professional that hands it over and says, “I’m giving you the freedom”– – You do it. – Yes. The person that says, “I want to have authorization
over every decision.” Which we’ve had in the past and we do not have them anymore. Those are the folks that
actually miss out on bookings because by the time that you
ask them their permission and then get back to the person,
they’ve already moved on. – Yep. I wanna know if I’m booking
something, that I have it. I don’t wanna be, “Hey, I hope I can get it. Please let me know.” I kinda just wanna be able to say, “Here’s the dates. Can I have this unit? Great. Let’s go.” – Right. – I couldn’t imagine
waiting two or three days to hear back from somebody. Even a few hours is annoying. – It is. I know, see, you just said a few hours and that is the society we live in. We want to do something. We want what we want
and we want to move on. – Yep. – Yeah. – I always look at it like a checklist. Hey, this is where we’re gonna go. This is the unit, great. Check. – Yep. – Then I can worry about something else. – But I love that you bring that up, because I think that a lot of owners that really have that tight hold on some of those… decisions. They don’t realize how much they’re hurting their bottom line. – Mmm-hmm. – Yeah. So and then number six, I would say, is that, in general, when you just look at
your rental, holistically, think about the lifestyle. So, for us, we’re in Crested Butte. And folks that come here, you know, they come from Texas, they
come from Austin, Oklahoma. They come here in the summer because it’s really hot
(laughs) wherever they are. But when they come here,
they’re having a little escape from their life and they want to be a
part of our community. They wanna be part of the mountains. They want to ride their townies around and, you know, they wanna get away from what’s happening back home. And they want to be a
part of our lifestyle. So, when you put your
vacation rental together, think about what they want. And that’s how you attract them. – That’s perfect. And it actually makes sense. And now I wanna go to Crested Butte. (laughing) – (Laughing) I want you to come to Crested Butte. – So how does somebody find out more about what you do and Crested Butte. They wanna go up in the
mountains a little bit. We could add a few things. Like, how far out of Denver? Like, are you closest to Denver? – We are, we have a couple airports, depending on your choices. The closest airport is Gunnison. – Mmm-hmm. – 30 minutes away. If you have a private plane, you have to buy land to
actually fly into it, but we do have a private
airport here, in Buckhorn Ranch. And then, the most commonly
used airport is probably Denver. And that’s right around a four, four and a half hour
drive into Crested Butte. – Oh, wow. Well fly into Gunnison,
is what you’re saying. – Yes. (laughing) Fly into Gunnison. – Yeah, awesome. And how do they find out more about you? – Sure. So, if you’re looking to find out more about vacation rentals here, you can visit our website,
which is That stands for Crested Butte. And then, for real estate and how to purchase a
vacation rental property here in Crested Butte, that is And that’s Heather Connor. C-O-N-N-O-R, dot com. – Very cool. And we’ll post those up on,
it’s on our website as well. Yeah, no, I really appreciate
you spending time with us. When I first talked to you and I was like, wow, you’re really into
the vacation rental stuff, and you seemed very zeroed in on it and you made it very simple
and easy to understand. I said that would something that a lot of people should hear. Just because there’s a lot
of folks that get out there. They hear about the Airbnb,
the VRBO and how great it is. And they’re on vacation
somewhere, so they buy something. – Right. – They’re looking and they have no idea what they’re getting into. This is not your traditional rent it and forget it type thing. This is gonna be, like,
this is a full-time job for somebody to really
manage these things. I can speak from experience ’cause I’ve had vacation rentals. My partner and I, Clint. He was dealing with all the, all the little maintenance stuff and he kept saying, this is just annoying. – (Laughing) – I’m just, like, if I have
to deal with another person who has a remote control and
it’s the remote for the fan and they’re trying to
turn on the TV with it, he goes, I’m gonna go crazy. So, I was like, this is why
you use a manager for it. I just thought it would be
easy for them to understand. – That’s so funny. And you start labeling everything. You’re like, this is the fan
remote, this is the door. This is (laughing)… – This is how you turn on the dishwasher. You ever used a dishwasher? Yeah, yeah. No, it’s very gut paining– – Actually, a lot of dishwashers
could do with a test. (laughing) – We do it all the time. We have a couple of condos here and there and some of them we
just let our friends use and it’s still, you’re always dealing with that little stuff and you always have to ask
yourself, is it worth it? Do you really want to
spend time dealing with, like, everything from a house cleaner, making sure that it’s clean. You’re not there. Unless you put a camera in it, maybe. Maybe that would freak people out. But you’d have to have somebody who is, that you know, that if you say, “Hey, it needs to be
cleaned on this date.” Then it’s actually cleaned on this date. We’ve done it remotely and
it is a mess, sometimes. Where you’re just like, “I don’t have eyeballs there.” So you really, you know, it really does make a huge difference. And then it’s your unit. A lot of your people,
do they actually come and spend time in their own units? – They do. – Yeah. – Yeah. A good majority of folks,
this is their vacation home. – Yep. – And actually, we have
a lot of folks that, if it weren’t for the fact that they could rent the property, when they weren’t there, a lot of them wouldn’t be able to afford all of those expenses and actually wouldn’t be able to afford a vacation home. So this is a good way for folks to have an investment in an location that they love to visit and they can actually afford
to have it in that area. Whereas, in years past, maybe
it would have taken them another 10, 20 years to be able to actually afford all those payments. – That is really, and that is perfect. I’ve seen that work with boats and yachts. Like, I never thought in a million years, that this is, that somebody
could do that stuff. But they do and I’m always shocked at it and then I realize,
it’s way more important that you don’t destroy your unit by bringing in the wrong people. And that’s where it really comes in. Like you said that you want
a certain type of manager or a certain type of owner. And you probably are just
as selective on tenants too, is, I don’t want to have
somebody that’s gonna go in there and trash my place, ’cause it’s my place. This is where I actually spend my time and it’s my belongings. It’s my furniture, you know. It’s not, yes, other people are using it, but it’s a lot different
than if it’s a rental, where you’re never gonna go there. – Right. – It’s good. – And that brings up a good point. And I know that we won’t have
time to jump into this today, but if you want, I can
send you a link to a video. It just talks about,
you know, a couple ways for you to protect your investment
and to protect yourself. – Very good. Absolutely. Hey, I’m all about, we’re
all about protecting, making sure that you don’t, there’s different laws, there’s different insurance for it. You’re preaching to the choir, when you start talk in that realm and we would love that link. We can always share it
with the people too, that are listening to this. – Absolutely. And folks like you guys, what you share with and educate everybody on, as far as asset protection, it really falls in line with
one of our main line items, as far as protecting yourself. Either through a corporation,
anonymity, or both. Which is what you guys
speak too, all day long. And I can’t say enough, how much most folks skip that step– – Mmm-hmm. – And then, until it’s too late. They just get excited and
they pick cute throw pillows and they get really into it. But they forget that there’s
a very real, legal side here, where there’s a lot of
potential liability. And it’s important that they
speak to somebody like you guys and make sure that they are
protected on that backside. – Appreciate it. That’s what we do. So, thank you for coming in
and talking about what you do and I think it’ll be of great value for someone who’s thinking
about vacation rentals. Actually, to really digest and think about what Heather was talking about because it makes such a huge difference. It is a different animal than your typical investment property and it can be a great thing, if you’re walking in with
realistic expectations. Or it can be a really horrific thing, if you’re caught unawares and you realize that, it’s
kinda like buying a boat. Best day is when you buy
it and sell it, right? No, you actually, if
you’re using it, fantastic. This thing is really great and if you’re treating it as your unit. If you’re doing rentals, it’s a little bit of a different animal. Just know that they’re
very different animals. Heather, I just wanna say thank you very much for joining us. Loved hearing from your
fan club there too. I loved the pets– – (Laughing) – The dogs, a couple rescue dogs. Which is telling us
something about you there. That’s awesome. You get a big check on that one. And I really appreciate you joining us. – All right, thanks, Toby. Good to see you. – All right. (inspiring music)

One thought on “Vacation/Short-term Rental Real Estate Investing (SHOULD YOU?) PODCAST

  1. As always great topics. More importantly its these educational videos merge Strest Level concepts into numbers

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