Beth Marcinko, Clark.com
Cities across the country have new, vacant apartment buildings and not enough people to fill them yet — so some enterprising startups are transforming those empty units into short-term rentals that resemble a hybrid of Airbnb and hotels.
New websites aim to provide a hotel experience with Airbnb-style booking
Whyhotel.com furnishes these empty building units and rents them out Airbnb-style until the building finds permanent tenants. The site is not currently open for reservations, but according to the Wall Street Journal, “WhyHotel piloted its concept with 50 empty units in a Pentagon City, Virginia, building owned by Vornado Realty Trust.” The pilot test from January 2017 through May 2017 reportedly went well, so Whyhotel may soon be expanding to your next destination.
Yourent.com seems to be the most advanced company doing this right now. They have properties available for rent in Miami, Florida, Austin, Texas, and Nashville, Tennessee. The units are designed to look like hotels and have most of the amenities you would find at one.
Pillow.com is another service that’s still in development. The company aims to work with building owners and tenants to safely rent out apartments with fees that both parties can agree to. The company lists the rentals on other sites like Airbnb, VRBO and HomeAway, so you may see more options available through your preferred booking site next time you travel!