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Buying Aspen Property for Income Generation vs. Private Use, Part 1

Posted: 1 Nov 2016

Aspen Snowmass is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world, and condominium or home rentals comprise most of the rental inventory - and have - since Aspen was reborn in the 1960s. Compared to other mountain resorts, this destination has the best of air service, cultural events and other seasonal attractions events that make it a great place to vacation. Aspen also offers two distinct and desirable seasons with peaks in winter and summer.

Aspen real estate

Income vs. Private Use

Many of the core condominium buildings in Aspen
were designed with short-term rentals in mind.

Aspen and Snowmass area properties are highly desirable for short-term rentals if they have certain characteristics that are highly valued by vacationers. Many properties also may be very attractive and best rented seasonally or long-term under certain circumstances. Second home or primary residential use is the choice for many owners as well for different reasons, so let us explain each.

Short term rentals:

Potential property owners should first decide if they need the rental income that property can generate and decide if they can emotionally deal with the issues that occur when renting their property. While there is significant income earned, there is some, yet usually minor, wear and tear.

If the owner needs the income to sustain the operating and carrying costs of the property, there are many options from which to choose.

Core condominiums, townhomes, single family homes or fractional condominiums all comprise the current inventory with core condominiums being the largest type rented as short-term vacation rentals. Many of the core condominium buildings were designed and accessorized with short-term rentals in mind. These buildings likely have front desks, common pools, common laundry, parking and other services that short-term rental guests desire and need. With these services come extra HOA (home owner association) costs that are recouped by additional occupancy and higher nightly rates. Core condominium owners should expect to cover all ownership costs for HOA dues, property taxes, utilities as well as some personal costs for unit upkeep, etc.

Single family homes beyond the central core but still close may be attractive because of their size or quality. Usually homes rent better in the summer season when access to the lifts or the busier core area is less important. In fact, summer luxury home rentals attract higher rates than winter.

Fractional properties such as the St. Regis, Hyatt or Ritz-Carlton Club also are very attract to rent and provide a great way to cover the HOA dues for the property owner when renting one of the weeks they do not use themselves. Frias Properties specializes in fractional rentals for all Aspen area buildings.

Be sure to read Part 2, where we explore the costs and benefits of purchasing a property for seasonal and long-term rental income.