Rental receipts in Dare continue at a record pace

By on November 22, 2010

Although the numbers dipped slightly in September, Dare County is maintaining a record pace in the amount of money visitors are spending on accommodations.

As of September, the latest month data was available, motels, rental houses, bed and breakfasts, condos and campgrounds had pulled in $330.4 million so far this year.

That tops the previous all-time high through September — $325.8 million in 2008, according to figures presented to the Dare County Tourism Board last week.

Lee Nettles, managing director of the Outer Banks Visitors Bureau, said that higher dollar figures do not necessarily mean that more people are renting more houses and rooms.

July was the month that pushed Dare County into the record books, posting $101.7 million in occupancy receipts. Partially accounting for the larger number, however, were five weekends during the month.

Hatteras Island, where businesses say they have been hurt by restrictions on beach access, has seen an increase of 2.87 percent in occupancy receipts through September compared to last year. In Buxton near popular Cape Point, however, the numbers were down by 3.6 percent.

While not setting any records, receipts for meals were up for the year, standing at $159.6 million through September, which is about a $2 million improvement over the same period last year.

The number of people stopping at area attractions and visitors centers were a mixed bag, according to the tourism authority’s figures.

Visits to all of the National Park Service facilities were down slightly through September. Visits were also down at all of the welcome centers except the one at Whalebone Junction.

Jockey’s Ridge State Park, with 1,382,417 visitors, saw an increase over last year, however, and the North Carolina Aquarium on Roanoke Island hosted 274,423 people through September compared to 272,632 during the same period last year.


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al s

April 11, 2011 1:51 pm

Selena K,

I can’t agree with your statistics re: foreclosures. Every report I’ve seen published by local realtor and their firms indicate that the figure is between 35 and 40%.

Yahoo just published a report based on 2010 census figures which places Dare county as 7th in a list of 10 of the most likely counties to become what they (not me) term as a ghost town. This is based on the high (greater than 55%) vacancy rate and double-digit loss in property values.

Selena K

December 1, 2010 1:42 pm

ekim, Colleen S. is correct; FCs are being snatched up by buyers. At the very least they are driving the market because only about 17%-30% of what is being sold are FCs. They exist in every genre of Outer Banks real estate–from a beat-up trailer up to a luxurious McMansion and everything in between.

Since you must know, about 30 bank-owned single-family houses with 4 or more bedrooms sold in all oceanside vacation rental-location areas from Corolla through Nags Head in the last 6 months. This is out of the approx. 100 total sold.

The rental income is not necessarily the reason that many borrowers are walking away from their debt; it is often mainly because they refinanced and TOOK THE CASH, and NOW the rental income is not enough.

Do some listening instead of just talking and you will learn.


November 25, 2010 10:35 am

Tyler Thats not what I asked,Colleen said foreclosures are being bought up furnished an put on the rental market.(personally i dont beleive that at all)So i ask again how many foreclosures have been bought furnished an put on the rental market in the last 6mo??? WE were told that we were booked all summer because of the gulf mess. Has any one else heard that? What is an UPSIDE DOWN BORROWERS??


November 24, 2010 3:58 pm

Ekim,many of the foreclosures are a result of upside down borrowers throwing the bank the keys and walking away from their homes and vacant lots(Google “strategic defaults”).They CAN afford the payments,but no longer want to own a home with negative equity,even though they have a moral obligation to repay the loan.It’s a big problem here and in other parts of the country.

Paul G

November 24, 2010 12:56 pm

We had more “in-season” bookings this year compared to last year, but fewer in the off-season (especially Apr and Oct – zero in 2010). The result was nearly identical gross receipts. So basically no change, except for the overall pattern of the rentals. So there’s my one data point…

It’s probably too early to say, but 2011 is looking good for us so far as there are already five bookings for our place. One of them is in April, so maybe the off-season won’t be such a shut-out next year. We didn’t see any booking activity in 2010 until about January.

I wonder if other folks are seeing similar patterns…?


November 24, 2010 8:36 am

If it was a record year why are we having record FORCLOSURE? Colleen any idea how many forclosures have sold in the last 6 mo?

Colleen S

November 23, 2010 7:41 pm

It is always possible that some property owners see an increase when others do not. It depends on what was desirable this year. I have not talked to a single property management company that did not have an overall increase in rentals.
In regard to loss of homes to rent — not likely. We do not have 100% occupancy that I’m aware of. The foreclosure homes are being purchased and the buyers quickly furnish them & get them back into the market to recoup their costs. Short sales do not make a difference in the rental market until they become a “pre-foreclosure. They are furnished & the owner is hoping to bring in as much money as possible to keep it afloat in hopes that a contract, that the bank will accept, is received & they can go to closing.
The stats support that this was a record year overall.


November 23, 2010 12:04 pm

Sounds to me like your friends,or the management companies weren’t doing something right.I’ve lived here for 22 years and this summer was the busiest I’ve ever seen it.Sept was very strong too!


November 23, 2010 8:22 am

SHOW ME THE MONEY!I have several freinds that own rental props thay didnt have that kind of year I own 3 companies I didnt have that kind of year I have 2 good freinds in the food biz their numbers stunk this year!SOOOO lets go to the story you guys wrote a few days ago and I quote (THESE LATEST FIGURES?)SHOW ME THE MONEY!!!

David Sanders

November 23, 2010 6:45 am

Given the rate of foreclosures on investment (rental properties) can we really expect to sustain future growth in the occupancy receipts? The owners tend to strip the furnishing, the banks either don’t or can’t rent them and, it seems, seldom actually provide mortgages for the purchase of them (or short sales).

At some point it seems to me that the inventory of accommodations is going to fall short of demand and stifle the growth, stalling the cash flow.

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