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Here are Tips to Make the Most of the Shifting Demand for Vacation Rentals

Locations in the northeast like Cape Cod, Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket in Massachusetts seeing a notable decline in demand compared to 2022.
Image Source: Getty Images | Photo by China Photos
Image Source: Getty Images | Photo by China Photos

The shift in the vacation rental market may leave homeowners in a "nerve-wracking" situation, but it presents an excellent opportunity for travelers seeking a spontaneous getaway. Vacationers now have a treasure trove of properties to choose from, even without the hassle of early planning.

Homeowners looking to rent their properties are finding the market trickier as vacationers have more options and are becoming more cost-conscious following the easing of pandemic-related travel restrictions.

Image Source: Getty Images | Photo by Carl Court
Image Source: Carl Court/Getty Images

The decline in demand for vacation homes can be attributed in part to Americans feeling more comfortable traveling overseas now that international travel has become less onerous and risky. During the pandemic, domestic travel experienced a surge as people sought vacation homes instead of hotels due to travel restrictions and safety concerns. However, as the world opens up, the vacation rental market is returning to a more traditional pattern, resembling pre-pandemic times in 2019. Despite price hikes in certain places and rising temperatures, Americans are thronging to these European countries for their summer retreat.

As homeowners adapt to the changing market, some are having to adjust their prices to attract guests. The softening demand has led homeowners to recognize that their pricing from previous years might have been too high. Consequently, they are lowering prices to entice travelers to return. "People are also recognizing their pricing from a few years ago might have been a bit high, so they are adjusting prices down to find guests to come back," said Josh Viner, a regional director of Vacasa, a platform that manages 42,000 vacation rentals across North America and in places like Belize and Costa Rica.

Image Source: Getty Images | Photo by Hollie Adams
Image Source: Hollie Adams/Getty Images

Tips for finding last-minute vacation rentals

Being flexible: Flexible renters are at an advantage and may be able to negotiate discounts of up to 15% on holiday homes. Being open to a property's location and configuration allows for more opportunities to secure a good house at a reasonable rate. "I think there is a little bit of wiggle room. If a renter is open to a home's location and configuration, they can probably get a good house at a decent rate," said Mala Sanders, a real estate agent with Corcoran.

Opt for weekdays: Similar to hotels, vacation rental companies adjust nightly rates based on demand. Booking a rental from Monday to Friday or Sunday to Thursday can save you money compared to premium prices charged for weekend stays.

Consider hot destinations: Locations with higher temperatures such as Virginia Beach, Orlando, Hawaii's Big Island or Kauai and certain parts of California and Florida may offer more affordable deals due to reduced demand during hot summer months.

Embrace short walks: Staying slightly inland or just a short walk away from the beach can significantly lower rental costs while still allowing you to enjoy all the amenities and experiences of a beach vacation.


Despite the previous need for early bookings, this year's vacation rental market is more flexible and accommodating to last-minute travelers. Homeowners, facing lower demand, are adjusting their pricing to attract guests. So, don't despair if you haven't planned a trip in advance; there are still plenty of opportunities to secure a wonderful vacation home for an unforgettable summer retreat.