o VRs do not contribute to neighborhood economies or cultures
o The profit VR homeowners make leaves the city.
REPLY: The argument that the short-term rental of homes does not contribute to neighborhood economies should by now have been put to rest. Visitors contribute to local economies as they go out to local restaurants and use local retail outlets and one in five short-term rental homeowners live in Palm Springs.
In addition, as Shon Tomlin indicated in the article, the main attraction of Palm Springs is our homes. By maintaining and often lovingly refurbishing, decorating and furnishing mid-century modern properties, and renting them out, homeowners are preserving a vital element of what makes Palm Springs uniquely attractive and interesting. If one doesn’t like tourists that won’t matter, but bear in mind that tourism is our single most important industry.
Modernism Week each year attracts larger and larger numbers. I think this last event brought 80,000 visitors to our city. They came to see homes included in the various neighborhood tours, tours which generated significant income for our neighborhood associations. And short-term rental homeowners included their fashionably decorated, immaculately maintained mid-century homes in those tours.
Beyond that, as Shon Tomlin says in the article, many people who eventually become full-time residents first come to appreciate living here by trying out the experience by repeatedly renting a home for a short period.
As for the second claim, that profits leave the city, we now know that one in five homes with short-term rental permits are registered to people who live in the Palm Springs, so to claim that “the profits homeowners make leave the city”, isn’t true for many.
It also assumes that people who rent out their homes make a profit in the first place. This is questionable as Shon Tomlin explains in the article that many people rent their homes out for short periods in order to help defray their costs, e.g. HOAs, taxes, maintenance and the like.
In some instances homeowners wouldn’t own their homes if they couldn’t do this and so an outright ban or draconian regulations with inflated costs will have an impact on the value of homes in the City as it will put our homes out of reach of moderate income people hoping to retire here.
Some of those homeowners rent out their homes for short periods in anticipation of becoming full-time residents, say when they retire, and that, again, belies the notion of “Us versus Them” as many of “them” become “us”, and many of “us” were “them”.