Short Term Rentals Help Hurricane Evacuees

Posted at 5:05 PM, Sep 12, 2018
and last updated 2018-09-12 20:41:39-04

With the impeding hurricane near the Carolinas, evacuees are finding their way to Tennessee.

Short term rental management companies such as Host Extraordinaires have been receiving inquiries from residents about available properties if and once they evacuate.

Evacuees have already booked two out of the company's 60 plus properties throughout Nashville. 

Lani Skidmore of Host Extraordinaires said they work with property owners to assure evacuees feel right at home.

"We definitely want to do right by people who employ us but if we can make some other people are happy and helped out, we're going to do that," said Skidmore.

In order to help, the company is willing to change policies to meet needs including a chance to provide discounts and leniency on the typically strict no pet policy at many of the homes.

Last year, the company learned a lot after evacuees from Hurricane Irma booked nearly a dozen of its properties.

Short term rentals may be the only viable option for those who choose to evacuate to Nashville because plenty of hotels are completely booked.

Aside from the typical weekend crowd, several events including the soccer game and the Americana Fest had hotel rooms booked well before the hurricane evacuations.

The Omni Hotel in Nashville and Union Station Hotel both report being full. Other hotels have also received calls from people contemplating evacuating North Carolina.

Greg Adkins of the Tennessee Hospitality & Tourism Association encouraged hotel members to provide rooms at a reasonable rate or even the government rate or lower.

It is part of the association's program called "Together We Prepare." He also asked to ease the rules on cancellation and pet policy.

"During times of emergencies we need to be helping our fellow citizens and not price gouging or hurting people that need help," said Adkins.