Blog Post

Insight: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly: Addressing Utah’s Short Term Rental Market Growth

By: Jennifer Leaver

Short term rentals, available on platforms like Airbnb and VRBO, have drawn both positive and negative attention over the past few years. Initially, short term rentals were lauded as income-generators that allowed local residents to rent out their personal spaces and properties to visitors. In fact, during the COVID-19 pandemic, short term rentals were perceived by travelers as “safer” accommodation alternatives to hotels. However, short term rentals have generated controversy as neighborhood disruptors and key contributors to local and employee housing shortages.

So, what does Utah’s short term rental market look like, where do renters originate, and what are Utah’s short term rental hotspots?

According to Transparent, Utah has experienced a 38.4% increase in short term rental listings over the past four years (see Figure 1). When broken down by listing type, listings were predominantly houses (40.2%) and apartments (37.7%), followed by townhouses (12.5%) and other accommodations,