Pop Up Zoomed In on Real Estate: What Does the Expanded 'Stay at Home' Order Mean for Short-Term Rentals?

On Tuesday, March 31st, Governor Charlie Baker announced new restrictions on short-term rentals as it relates to the state’s ‘Stay at Home’ order. The guidance expressly prohibits rentals of 31-days or less for leisure and vacation uses during that period unless the stay is related to COVID-support detailed in the order.

This directive falls in line with the guidance the Cape Cod & Islands Association of REALTORS gave starting last Friday recommending to its members to cease conducting any short-term rental stays during the ‘Stay at Home’ order, other than for essential workers.

Tenants occupying short-term rentals as of March 31 may remain until the end of their originally scheduled term. Extensions beyond the original term are not permitted. The guidance does not impact leases longer than 31-days or stays after May 4, but be aware that this date can be extended.

If you have a lease in place for a short-term rental (31-days or less) beginning between March 31 and May 4, you may not provide occupancy. Follow the terms of your lease and consult with your attorney as needed to best address this issue with your clients. If using the MAR short-term rental lease, you will need to refund prorated rent until you are able to deliver occupancy. If you used a hosting platform for a rental during this period, review their service terms as many have issued their own guidance on how they will assist clients for bookings impacted by the pandemic.