Although an article yesterday in the New York Times focused more on the illegality of short-term rentals in much of East Hampton, the more interesting news (to us, anyway) was how much Web rentals—sites like HomeAway, Airbnb, and VRBO--have cut down on the business of traditional agents. In Montauk, John Keeshan said his rental business is 25 percent of what it was three years ago. Theresa Eurell of Town & Country's Montauk office said that high prices mean there had been a ton of people looking for group rentals, which she doesn't do as a professional agent, and that the days of families renting for the summer are gone. On HomeAway, the number of Hamptons listings has doubled since 2010, to 2061.
Local mental health professional Fran Donovan "said one of her patients' top anxieties these days was the explosion of short-term rentals." Uh….really? Fortunately for them, Larry Cantwell, East Hampton town supervisor, is planning to crack down on short term rentals that violate local laws.
· For Owners and Brokers, Web Rentals Upend the Hamptons Season [NYT]