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Alba Iulia
Thursday, June 4, 2020

Local vacation rentals feel the economic impact

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SAN DIEGO (KGTV) – Families who use their homes as vacation rentals to survive financially are hit hard.

A family in South Bay tells 10News that the coronavirus pandemic and the national Stay At Home order have temporarily stopped their small business.

“We were living the American dream until it happened about two weeks ago,” said Chris Morrow.

About six years ago, before the housing market got hot, Chris and her husband Marty took advantage of their money and bought a house in Chula Vista.

They transformed the charm of the house into a small business: an Airbnb rental. It is a decision that has radically changed their lives. They regularly hosted large groups and even had a backyard wedding.

Chris said that before COVID-19, their home was booked every weekend before the spring break. Now things have changed.

“No one is reserving anything for the foreseeable future,” said Marty. “So at the moment, we don’t know what to expect when it happens again.”

At $ 1,000 plus a night, with a minimum of two nights, this loss of income they were counting on could be exhausting.

“We are looking at our budget and trying to find ways to cut corners,” said Marty. “Spending, of course, is lower, but our income is lower and we have to do what we can to do it.”

Instead of waiting to see how everything goes, the Morrow’s are trying to use the tools they have to make money.

Chris and Marty are currently living on their boat, which was made possible by Airbnb revenues.

They use the luxury of being on the water to document their lives through Youtube videos. The two recode what they see along the way.

“Every day we check the temperature on video, and we also talk about our daily newspaper,” said Chris.

Some of their recent videos include an interview line outside the local Amazon building, sunrises over the bay, and life aboard a boat.

They hope that the videos will eventually be monetized, because at the moment, they don’t know when the rental company will return with reservations.

“There are so many things going on, so diversification is the way to go right now,” said Chris.

Airbnb has a section on his website answer questions from hosts and guests.

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