Author Topic: Renting out our holiday cabin or not?  (Read 1178 times)

Linea_Norway

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Renting out our holiday cabin or not?
« on: March 07, 2017, 06:36:50 AM »
Hello.

We own a holiday cabin in a mountain village, 5 hours driving from our house. It is 60m2, quite big for 2 people and doable, but slightly small for 4 people. As we don't use it all the time, we could generate some money from renting it out. My husband and I think there are many downsides to renting out, but it could probably generate quite some money and maybe cover the cost of having this cabin. And that would come in handy, since the property taxes are tripled this year from last year!

The downsides of renting it out are the following:
- How to ensure that the electricity is switched off after each use? Otherwise the electricity bill will increase by tenfold.
- How to ensure that the renters don't leave behind any water that will freeze?
- How to ensure that the renters are putting anti-freeze fluid in the sink?
- How to ensure that the renters don't use tons of firewood that we need to order and transport on a sledge?
- How to ensure that the renters when they leave carry a sack of firewood inside to dry properly in the hut to use next time.
- I would need to switch bed sheets every time we visit, take them home for washing and bring them back the next time. This is a lot of extra work.
- Not knowing what food there will be left in the closet next time we visit.
- There is a water problem. The hut doesn't have water and the public tab is now closed. How to ensure renters will have drinking water? We bring a 25 liter tank from home, which is enough for a weekend for 2 people and we add some buckets of (non drinking) water from the river for washing dishes. (There is cattle grazing beside the river in summer.)
- How to deliver the key to the renter and get it back? And what to do if they don't deliver it back?
- How to ensure the renters don't throw diapers and sanitary towels etc into the natural toilet? We should be able to bury the contents of this toilet in the ground for compost. I have heard from other rented out cabins that this can be a problem.

As the cabin is 5 hours driving from our house, we don't have the option of checking on it ourselves.

Maybe a simple solution would be:
- Leaving the electricity on the whole year with the heating slightly on on 5C and thereby increasing the amount of electricity per year from 600 kWh to 6000 kWh. Still: How to ensure they don't leave the heater on 20++ degrees Celsius?
- Hire a local person from the village to do all the checking and handle delivery of the key. This person would need to get paid. This person should also wash sheets if the hut is rented out to 2 different renters without me visiting in between. The local person should also do emergency cleaning (with water from the river) if the hut is filthy between 2 renters.
- Ask the same local person to provide the renters with drinking water in a tank.

We really like to have our own place. Renting out to others means that others can live in your things and break stuff and use up materials and in general do stuff you don't want them to do.
We don't "need" the money now, it's just one possible thing that could help moving our FIRE date closer. The other thing is that my DH and I have discussed the options of renting out our house also after FIRE, whenever we want to travel. This would be a mild way of getting used to the idea of sharing your place.

What are your ideas on the matter?

Linea_Norway

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Re: Renting out our holiday cabin or not?
« Reply #1 on: March 07, 2017, 12:50:16 PM »
I discussed it with my DH today. He thinks we would have to make some investments, like replacing the toilet so that there isn't any smell, if it is rented out more often than we use it today. And replacing the pipes from the sink so they won't clot.
I just checked what comparable cabins in the area cost on airbnb and the price is quite low. It is therefore not worth the trouble and the investment.

MayDay

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Re: Renting out our holiday cabin or not?
« Reply #2 on: March 08, 2017, 04:40:10 AM »
Although I would be happy staying in such a rustic cabin, as you have listed, there is a lot more fussy maintenance than with a normal one.

Plus by the time you pay someone how much will you really make?

Linea_Norway

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Re: Renting out our holiday cabin or not?
« Reply #3 on: March 08, 2017, 07:27:20 AM »
Although I would be happy staying in such a rustic cabin, as you have listed, there is a lot more fussy maintenance than with a normal one.

Plus by the time you pay someone how much will you really make?

It is not very old, I guess some 13 years or so. Maintenance is something we do anyway, because we use it ourselves. I was just wondering whether we could not make some extra money from something we already own. Currently it is just costing money, although we also have pleasure from it.