The BDN is exploring Maine’s housing crisis from every possible angle, from how it affects home prices, to what it means for Mainers across the state. Read our ongoing coverage here and fill out this form to tell us what you want to know.
It’s no secret that Airbnb, VRBO and other short-term rentals are thriving in Maine, with Airbnb alone having more than 10,000 active rentals in the Pine Tree State.
More than one-third are located in 10 tourism communities, including Bar Harbor and Old Orchard Beach, according to data from Airbnb data tracker AirDNA. In Bar Harbor, 88 percent of the current 532 listings are entire homes, with the remainder being private rooms. Some 90 percent of available units are occupied.
That success rate is not welcomed by everyone. Some towns have reacted with measures to curb short-term rentals, saying they decrease the number of long-term rental units.
But short-term rentals have benefited the state and rental owners, with Maine getting $8 million from Airbnb rentals in 2019 because of the state’s 9 percent lodging tax, according to Airbnb. Hosts earned more than $90 million that year, the most recent for which data is available, with 541,900 people visiting Maine Airbnbs, it said.
For those contemplating renting their property or who have already done so and could offer some tips, we would like to know what information you need or could share about the rental business.