By Bev Mortimer
Rentals bookings way ahead of season has both astonished and pleased those St Francis estate agents in the holiday rental space. And at least three agencies admit to being low on rental stock owing to the unprecedented demand.
“With an unexpectedly busy Easter Season behind us, it appears that Christmas is already hurtling towards us at breakneck speed in the rentals department at the local Pam Golding Properties,” says Richard Arderne franchisee at Pam Golding (PG) “Demand for holiday homes for the 2014-15 Christmas season is already far exceeding last year’s with many families wishing to secure the rental of the same holiday homes year on yea.
“As at end of May 2014, we have seen an astounding increase on the total number of days booked over the festive season go up by 50%, the number of rentals confirmed is up at 33%, with an overall turnover up by 82% compared to end of May 2013.”
Kerry Clare of KC Properties concurs: “It would seem that vistors can’t wait to come to St Francis Bay for the fast approaching Festive Season. This was also clearly evident with the long and busy Easter holidays.”
Chas Everitt’s Brendon Lahana agrees that holiday rentals have been extremely busy with many enquiries for this coming December-January holiday season. “Our stock of canal homes has dwindled owing to the many sales that have taken place and new owners not wanting to rent their new home out. We are looking for more homes to rent especially on the canals.”
Also in agreement is Jennifer Cooper from Harcourts Oyster in St Francis Bay who maintains that “the rental sector continues to ride the wave of high demand.”
Arderne also refers to a shortage of holiday rental stock. “Early bookings of repeat rentals have resulted in a shortage of properties being available for new short term tenants wishing to spend their holidays in St Francis Bay, Cape St Francis and surroundings.
“Most owners prefer to optimise rentals by imposing minimum 14 -21 night occupancies, in an attempt to structure back-to-back rentals, hence maximising good income levels for owners and securing holiday homes for tenants at their preferred peak period”
.Arderne elaborates on the rental market by noting that St Francis Bay and surrounding areas continue to grow in popularity as the summer holiday destination of choice for many local and international holiday makers. More vacationers are appreciating the value and convenience of renting a fully furnished holiday home in our area. “The 2013/14 season was record breaking for us.”
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