August 17, 2017
Town of Crested Butte Short Term Rental Regulations
With the advent of companies like Airbnb, VRBO, and a multitude of property management companies, it’s no wonder that many homeowners in the Crested Butte area rent their properties when they aren’t using them themselves. Even before these modern-day internet companies, however, renting ski and resort town properties has always been a common and often lucrative proposition. In addition to the financial benefits for the homeowner, local governments benefit with increased tax revenues that go hand in hand with increased tourism.
In many communities, however, local governments have decided that short term rentals are something that should be regulated, or even outright banned. Jackson, WY, for instance, has long had a ban on short term rentals unless the home was up to commercial code in the same way that hotels are, including automatic fire sprinklers, etc- which basically meant no short term rentals. Denver, Boulder, and Durango also have fairly strict rules surrounding short term rentals.
Crested Butte is now joining the list of communities that will more forcefully attempt to control rentals, beginning 1/1/2018. Keep in mind, this only pertains to the town of Crested Butte, not surrounding communities like Mount Crested Butte, Skyland, or Crested Butte South. As long as you’re following the proper rules in those areas (and you’re not in a subdivision that doesn’t allow short term rentals), you should be fine in those areas.
But there are new rules in the town of Crested Butte, and they vary considerably based on where the property is located, as well as whether or not you are a full-time or part-time resident. Crested Butte released a Frequently Asked Question sheet on 7-27-17, which you can view here. Properties that are already being rented are grandfathered in.
Crested Butte Short Term Rental Regulations- Potential Implications
So what does it all mean? First off, I think that the regulations are still a work in progress. Currently, for instance, advance bookings cannot be honored when a home is sold- I have to think that that stipulation will be changed. Second, there are currently no more permits for non-residents. I think that many of those permits will be dropped when homeowners that currently have a “placeholder permit”, with no intention of actually renting, decide not to pay for their permit. As of right now, however, if someone is buying a home in Crested Butte knowing that it has a great rental history, chances are that they won’t get to rent it, at least not right away.
What I think will be more interesting, however, will be potential effects on areas outside of Crested Butte. Buyers are constantly surprised to find that property values in the town of Crested Butte are, on average, far higher than those near the ski area, or just south of town. Restrictions in town may mean that buyers begin seeking out real estate in areas like Mount Crested Butte where there are fewer restrictions. Some owners may simply skip rentals altogether if they can afford it, which will have the opposite effect of what the town council was seeking when they passed these rules.
As mentioned above, I suspect that there will be a few tweaks here and there of the rules as currently written. So, I wouldn’t rely on this post or the FAQ sheet above when you’re making property decisions. Curious about the different communities of the Crested Butte area? Click here.