Airbnb entrepreneur advises Three Rivers: Be proactive on short-term rentals

Think back 10 years, or even five years, ago. In Three Rivers, it was unthinkable that a career could exist solely devoted to owning and operating short-term rentals; long-term rentals, yes, but not a night here and a night there. Today, there are many locals who do just that — make their living in the short-term rental market.

Most likely they didn’t aspire to a career in vacation rentals but seized the opportunity.

One recent visitor to Three Rivers said he actually prepared for a career in short term rentals. Meet Lucas Rowe, 30, a self-described Airbnb entrepreneur from Canada.

As an Airbnb host and owner of 13 rentals, Rowe travels and stays in Airbnb units wherever he goes. He came out west for Burning Man then visited Sequoia National Park and Three Rivers with another Airbnb host from the Dominican Republic.

“It’s all about building long-term relationships and staying in touch,” Rowe said. “I’m a people person so it’s not about social media for me but rather in-person meet-ups and problem-solving conversations.”

Rowe says his model is simple and focused on doing good in the community.

“In Canada, I don’t trust government to do much of anything on their own, and in Three Rivers you shouldn’t either,” Rowe said. “The Airbnb phenomenon is not going away so it’s best to organize for local control.”

Rowe has pledged to continue to share how the short-term rental explosion plays out in Ontario, Canada.

“I’ll be back to check on Three Rivers’s progress,” Rowe said. “I can see it now: Three Rivers and Kitchener-Waterloo — sister Airbnb communities.”

3 thoughts on “Airbnb entrepreneur advises Three Rivers: Be proactive on short-term rentals

  • September 26, 2019 at 6:17 pm

    Yes; you are and will benefit (profit) from them, but you do not live your life everyday next to one, two, or three of them…ask the people that lives next to them !!

  • September 29, 2019 at 11:44 am

    Thanks for this interview, interesting idea/s. Importantly, STR owners should band together to form an alliance. However, with 14 units, this man clearly has a different business model than I do with my 3 one-room cabins, I’m barely making ends meet as it is, and would absolutely be unable to chip in 2 to 3% of my income. We are also seasonal, having to save as much as possible for the winter slow-down. Not to mention the inherent costs of owning property in the mountains. I’m also unsure if he realizes that at a 10% tax rate, we pay a huge chunk of cash to the county already and presumably some of that comes back to 3R in the form of road upkeep, etc.

    I also believe that the type of vacations taken here are true celebrations (of nature and literal ones), and our guests are more likely to spend more money in the community for meals, entertainment and gift shops/galleries than “regular” short-term renters in non-gateway towns.. Point being, I feel 100% comfortable with what I give back to the community. While he has a great mindset for his situation, I don’t see a direct correlation between the two sets of circumstances.

    That said, some regulation, especially into safety measures (NO OUTSIDE FIRES!) etc. are a good idea. No one is against that. But we need to be wary of intrusion, including money-grabs and bizarre requirements. The county gets most of its TOT revenue from 3R—there’s no way they want that dried up.

  • October 4, 2019 at 9:41 am

    The only place that a STVR should exist is NOT in a residentially zoned neighborhood. Zoning, Zoning, Xoning!

    Nice comments from an individual who, at the very least, doesn’t even live here, nor may not even be a citizen of this country! His advice, seems to be exploitation and pillage at the expense of your quiet residentially zoned neighborhood. You know the one you invested in when you bought your home? I am not against Short Term Vacation Rentals (STVRs) in general, only where they should not be located. Where are my rights?

    With that said, in reference to the article, nice advice dude! Do you live next to one, or in community that your home and castle is surrounded by them.?

    When you force permanent residents out, or make it less desirable for them to live here, businesses suffer, services suffer, people leave! Then businesses find that seasonal activity doesn’t support or keep their doors open. This is a domino effect; no services where are the guests to go for food, supplies, services, fuel, etc? Then the attraction to stay here is lost. When the balance gets lopsided, it’s crash and burn time.

    As always, do your homework and think down a level or two, or three. It is always more complicated than simply forming a position based on what someone wants, verses what someone else doesn’t want. One persons right to do what he wants to do ends at the other persons nose… for example consider the zoning laws!


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