8 trending amenities that luxury buyers want

brown wooden table near swimming pool

The home has become the center of the universe for many of us during the pandemic. In 2021, and going into 2022, buyers are seeking unique amenities that make living and working from home exciting and comfortable. Here are a few.

Excerpt via Inman

T hroughout the pandemic, we have witnessed a huge shift when it comes to the amenities our clients prioritize when purchasing a home. The amenities that used to fall under the “would be great to have” category have now become nonnegotiable.

More than ever, the home has become the staycation, the office, the gym — you name it. In today’s world, home life is everything, and staying abreast of the latest and greatest amenities on the market is key. Here, we’ve outlined the amenities our clients are seeking when house-hunting in 2021 and 2022.

Are you a luxury home buyer or seller looking for the right-sized home in South Puget Sound or Souther California? Schedule a consultation call. We look forward to hearing from you!

1. Outdoor is king

While under lockdown, we have spent more and more time outdoors. The need for outdoor amenities has skyrocketed with buyers. From upgrading outdoor living and dining areas to installing state-of-the-art outdoor kitchens and barbecues, clients are hard-pressed on finding the perfect outdoor area for entertaining safely.

brown wooden table near swimming pool
Photo by Jonathan Borba on Unsplash

A perfect example of this is a client of ours who installed a retractable roof at home to capitalize on the incredible Southern California weather and provide the ultimate indoor-outdoor experience.

2. Kid-friendly features

With everyone working from home and homeschooling becoming a part of everyday life, the desire for more kid-friendly amenities has increased exponentially.

From large playrooms and outdoor half courts that can be used for basketball, skating and scooter rides to incredible jungle gyms, sandboxes and swimming pools, having kid-approved amenities has never been more important.

3. Work-from-home spaces:

The home office has become the go-to amenity for homebuyers. Clients are seeking spacious and quiet office spaces that are ideal for working from home. Aesthetically pleasing rooms that double as beautiful Zoom backgrounds are also a priority.

brown and black office table and four black cantilever chairs
Photo by Damir Kopezhanov on Unsplash

4. Sporting areas

During the pandemic, buyers have taken up new hobbies — including sporting activities. From batting cages to basketball courts and indoor simulated putting greens, clients want to have these amenities accessible to them at home so they can work on their game whenever they choose.

5. Home gyms

With many fitness centers and gyms still closed or open with limited hours and capacity, buyers are seeking state-of-the-art home fitness spaces. From the latest Pilates equipment to expertly crafted weight rooms, fitness rooms have become very important to buyers in this market.

6. Salons

Luxury buyers have become accustomed to at-home salon visits, with nail technicians and masseuses going directly to them for regular grooming. We’ve witnessed buyers seeking built-in salon spaces they can dedicate to pampering themselves within the comforts of home.

7. Kitchens with storage

The kitchen is truly the heart of the home, and buyers are now seeking kitchens with extra-large pantries or adjoining storage rooms where they can keep their essentials stocked, should any shortages occur.

8. Sanitizing amenities

Sanitizing stations in mudrooms, air filtration systems throughout the home and even guesthouses that can be used for quarantine purposes have all become the new normal for buyers in this market.

Overall, the home has become the center of the universe for many of us during the pandemic. In 2021, buyers are seeking unique amenities that make living and working from home exciting and comfortable. We look forward to seeing how these client needs evolve as the market continues to progress throughout the year and beyond.


Best Vacation Rental Sites for Owners – Beyond Airbnb

Excerpt via Lodgify

Many owners and managers choose to use vacation rental listing sites to complement the activity they’re already doing on their own websites. In fact, there are many benefits to using both your own page and external listing sites for your vacation rental. After all, a good short-term rental business is a diversified one.

One thing that doesn’t always get talked about, however, is the cost of using listing sites. While there are some vacation rental sites with low fees, others come with a hefty price tag – usually at your or your guest’s expense.

That’s why we’ve put together this comprehensive guide to all the major (and specialized) vacation rental websites out there, complete with guest fees, host fees and listing costs. Take a look at the full guide below to choose the best vacation rental site for your business.

Why should you list your property on vacation rental sites?

If you already receive a significant amount of direct bookings, you might be wondering what’s the point of listing your property on an OTA in the first place. After all, there aren’t many vacation rental sites without fees and every host wants to keep as much of the grand total as possible. If you zoom out and look at the bigger picture, you’ll see that adding your property to vacation rental listing sites will actually increase your profits, fees and all.

Free Publicity

As you read on, you’ll see that the traffic from some of these OTA’s is enormous. Vrbo, Airbnb, and Booking.com are household names. Having your vacation rental brand associated with these companies will provide you the benefit of their fame. A lot of guests who are traveling to a new area or aren’t familiar with the vacation rental industry might only know about these major platforms. With that in mind, having your business be a part of a bigger brand will put you in touch with these guests.

Further, a lot of the vacation rental websites we discuss below feature properties and owners in their own publications, marketing materials, and on the front pages of their websites. Vrbo’s Instagram alone totals up to almost 400,000 followers. Imagine if your property was to be featured in their next post! Remember that the publicity from these OTAs extends far beyond the website alone and having your property listed with these superstars can group you in their fame.

Diversify your pool of guests

If your vacation rental business is only known to a certain audience like retirees or couples, you’re missing out on potential reservations. You don’t want to get stuck in the cycle of only booking a certain type of client by limiting the places you publish. While it’s true that there are certain guests to avoid, not using vacation rental listing sites could hold you back from a variety of clients who could enrich your hosting experience.

Some listing sites have personalities of their own or they are known for attracting niche audiences (we’ll dive a little deeper later), so if you’re trying to move towards a new clientele or just attract a variety of guests, you might want to consider which sites best suit the clients you’re seeking out.

Make your business legitimate

When you buy from widely known brands, be it clothing or holiday packages,  you know what to expect from that company. When a brand is well established, so are its patterns, behaviors, mission, and overall operations. People who book with Airbnb or Vrbo know more or less what to expect. These key players have been in the business for quite some time, proving their legitimacy.

Having your vacation rental affiliated with those names makes your business appear legitimate by proxy. Most guests know that OTAs and vacation rental listing sites maintain high standards for their hosts, so your business being on there consequently means that you adhere to those levels of quality.

Reach a wider, global audience

You can have the best beach house in the whole Outer Banks, but that still won’t help you to tap into a global market if you aren’t properly advertising your property. When you list your vacation rental on local sites and global listing pages, you help to scale up your business to reach guests from all over the world who might be more than interested in staying at your property!

Top Vacation Rental Websites


Founded in 2008 from a San Francisco bedroom, Airbnb is now one of the biggest vacation rental websites in existence. Worth about $85 billion, Airbnb now boasts more than 150 million users, including some 4 million hosts. This company pioneered the path for vacation rental sites and continues to be a huge player in the industry.

It’s no surprise, then, that according to data from SimilarWeb, Airbnb is now the world’s top-ranked website in the accommodation and hotels category. Due to its massive notoriety, it makes perfect sense to have your property listed on Airbnb.

Understand that because the platform is so huge, each location is chock full of listings, so how will you make your Airbnb stand out? As you consider whether you want to list your vacation rental on this platform, also keep in mind how you’ll use this OTA to increase your visibility and get more bookings.

Airbnb Fees

Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
Most guests pay a service fee that is under 14.2% of the booking subtotal (everything excluding taxes & fees). Approximately 3-5% to cover transaction fees, but it may vary depending on the country or if hosts have a Super Strict cancelation policy. No are no listing fees for joining.

Vrbo (previously HomeAway)

The seemingly ever-expanding family of vacation rental websites belonging to the umbrella company, Expedia Group, have much to offer when it comes to listing properties. With over a million listings in more than 190 countries, Vrbo’s companies (HomeAway, Vrbo, VacationRentals.com to name a few) are some of the biggest out there.

Vrbo gained its popularity by offering a wide range of entire-home accommodations instead of single rooms. The platform is perfect for vacation rental owners focused on the house rather than the host. As the platform has continued to boom, the variety of properties has followed suit and, consequently, some of their offerings include unique stays like treehouses, cabins, or houseboats. You can find just about every type of property on this site; make your property one of them!

Vrbo has acquired many other the top vacation rental sites such as TravelMob, TopRural, and Homelidays, just to name a few, so some of your existing guests from these sites might have already migrated over to Vrbo making it that much more important that you get your property listed on this mega OTA. What’s more, by using Vrbo vacation rental owners and managers will gain exposure to over 44 million travelers each month!


Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
Guest service fee is usually between 6-12% of the booking total. Dependent on listing plan – pay-per-booking subscriptions will pay a percentage (starting from 8%) on each reservation total.
Annual subscription owners will not incur any additional host charges.
If anticipated income is less than $10,000 per year per listing, this option is suitable. Just pay a commission on the bookings you take, starting at 8%.
Annual subscription
For year-long rentals, paying annually makes sense. Prices start at $499.


From a small Dutch start-up to a huge, international enterprise, Booking.com is undoubtedly one of the top websites for travelers everywhere. Every day, more than 1.5 million nights are reserved on the online travel agency. It’s also hugely global – the site is available in over 43 languages and offers an inventory of over 6.2 million homes, apartments and other unique places to stay in over 227 countries.

While Booking.com doesn’t cater solely to vacation rentals, the offerings for this section of the website are constantly growing, making it a fantastic vacation rental website for owners and managers to list on.

The search engine layout highlights internal ratings, the overall price for the vacation rental, and frequently an enticing deal or slash of the old price for a new offer. If you regularly run promotions for your vacation rental, this might be a good platform for you to promote your business and lure in new guests with incredible savings.

Booking.com Fees

Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
No reservation fees for guests. Hosts pay commission on a per-booking basis (can range between 10-25%, depending on property location). Invoiced and paid monthly. Booking.com offers a commission calculator to help you know exactly what the cost will be for your property There are no listing fees for Booking.com


The travel website, TripAdvisor, has built its strong following based on showcasing reliable reviews on just about everything travel-related. That includes hotels, restaurants, activities and you guessed it, vacation rentals.

It’s no surprise that TripAdvisor has made the jump to the vacation rental industry. Their already clear fame in travel and tourism made it an easy step into the short-term rental world. Because they blend a number of vacation-related products, it’s a great platform to use for businesses in an “experience-heavy” location such as Orlando, for its theme parks, or Bali, for its outdoor activities.

The latest figures show over 340 million travelers use TripAdvisor per month, and there are more than 800,000 vacation rental properties listed on the site. Active in over 200 countries, TripAdvisor automatically translates any property listings to appear on its 26 sister sites including FlipKey, HouseTrip, HolidayLettings and Niumba.

TripAdvisor Fees

Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
Travelers are charged a booking fee, which TripAdvisor uses to run the platform, and this varies from 8% to 16% depending on reservation total. Hosts pay a 3% fee to TripAdvisor on every booking they take, deducted from the guest’s booking total. There are no listing fees for TripAdvisor


Expedia has been a big name in the travel industry for over two decades. A big advantage of becoming an Expedia Partner (and listing on their site) is the localized sites that are available in 33 countries worldwide.

Their directory of more than 590,000 properties worldwide makes it an important channel for vacation rental owners to be part of. In addition, their award-winning app and platform allow travelers to bundle accommodation services with flights, car rentals and activity bookings. You’ll have the chance to pull in clients who were maybe initially just looking for a flight or car rental, but stumble across your property and fall in love. A wider audience means more clients and bookings for your vacation rental business!

Expedia Fees

Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
No reservation fees for guests. Similar to Booking.com, hosts pay commission on a per-booking basis (can range between 15-20%, depending on property location). Amount is invoiced and paid monthly. There are no listing fees for Expedia

Niche vacation rental websites

The world of travel has grown in a way that tries to be a little bit more accessible for all types of travelers, be it disability-accommodationkid-friendly, or any other needs you may have. The beauty of renting a vacation rental instead of a hotel is the customization and touch of detail that hosts add for their varying guests.


Holidays are no longer just for a select few. The trend has shifted to where travelers are bringing everyone along, pets included! If your vacation rental allows dogs, cats, and other furry creatures with open arms, consider listing with BringFrido.com. When guests see just how accommodating you are to all members of the family, they’ll be ready to leave a stellar review for your open hospitality.

More than just a vacation rental website, BringFido.com is a one-stop shop for all things necessary when it comes to planning dog-friendly getaways, be it restaurant searches or accommodations. Search their 250,000 pet-friendly vacation rentals by price, rating, pet policy, or region!

BringFido.com Fees

Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
No booking fees are charged when making a reservation. Plus, guests get a free gift (such as a t-shirt, sticker etc.) when they arrive home from the trip. BringFido.com usually takes a small commission from bookings made through the platform. If the owner already has their own website or listings on HomeAway, VRBO, Airbnb or TripAdvisor, BringFido.com will use the link to create a listing free of charge.

Otherwise, individual property listings start at $249 per year.


Founded in Paris in 2013, misterb&b is a travel and vacation rental website that primarily provides accommodation to individuals from the LGBTQ+ community.

The idea of creating a gay-friendly niche travel website occurred to misterb&b’s founder after staying in an Airbnb in Barcelona, whereby the owner started reacting badly upon learning he was gay. misterb&b is now the largest gay accommodation provider on the internet, with more than 210,000 hosts in over 135 countries.

There’s so much to love about this platform. Misterb&b offers members a community to connect with other users on their trips, they offer vouchers and travel credits, they were featured on the famed Rupaul’s Drag Race, and a portion of their proceeds go to LGBTQ+ nonprofit organizations.

misterb&b Fees

Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
misterb&b charges a 12% guest fee on the gross amount of the rental (e.g. rent+cleaning fee). Cross-border transactions are subject to another 3% charge. misterb&b charges 5% commission on each booking taken on the platform for the processing of guest payments. There are no listing fees for Misterb&b


The Coolstays vacation rental website allows owners to list and travelers to book unique destinations and properties worldwide. With a stunning design to inspire travelers into booking something a bit more exact, the website matches guests with a property that would be a perfect fit for their needs – whether that’s wellness or history, glamping or accessible offerings.

For each property listed, owners can detail what makes their property special – allowing the rental to be marketed for specific categories across the site. This site offers all kinds of “cool” accommodations such as chapels and churches, boatels, or just generally quirky stays!

All properties are vetted by Coolstays to make sure they comply with the category they choose and that they’re up to standard. Because their collections are curated, you must apply to be listed on the site.

Coolstays Fees

Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
Coolstays charges a 10% guest fee on top of each booking. Coolstays has four subscription plans and pricing varies depending on your purchased plan and property size. Coolstays has four subscription plans and pricing varies depending on your purchased plan and property size.

Luxury vacation rental websites

If your clientele is more high dollar or you’re aiming for that market, it’s vital that you target this specific type of guest on sites that cater to their needs. Luxury clientele aren’t seeking the top promotion or a big price cut in red, they want smooth and sophisticated.

Certain websites specialize in pairing high-end hosts with luxury-seeking guests through curated collections, sleek web design, and customized service. It’s not necessarily easy to break into this field, but if your property fits the mold, it should be listed accordingly.


VillaRental.com has been listing luxury holiday villas for 20 years and offers stunning properties in Italy, Mexico, St Martin and the US Virgin Islands. The Concierge Team helps create a memorable experience for guests and provides excellent customer service to travelers and owners alike.

VillaRental.com Fees

Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
Guest fees are customized depending on the property and guest needs Host fees are customized depending on the property and guest needs Listing fees are customized depending on the property and guest needs

Home & Villas Marriott

Even the hotel industry is getting in on the vacation rental action. As renting private homes grows in popularity, other chains and hospitality companies are figuring out ways to bridge the two. Marriott sought out this opportunity by creating Home & Villas Marriott, under the umbrella of the larger Marriott International group.

What’s so great about this listing site is the ability to monetize off what would otherwise be hotel-only traffic. Loyal customers of Marriott and the hotel industry at large now don’t have to stray, as they can book private homes with a company they’re already familiar with. Marriott even allows guests to use their Marriott points towards vacation rentals listed on their site. Bonus!

Home & Villas Marriott Fees

Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
The guest service fee varies depending on the stay and duration but the cap is 10-15% per booking. Home & Villas Marriott charges a customized host fee depending on the stay. Home & Villas Marriott charges a customized listing fee depending on the stay.

Airbnb Luxe

You’ve definitely heard of Airbnb, but are you familiar with their sister brand Airbnb Luxe? With a focus on high-end homes and quality-driven villas, Airbnb Luxe offers a selection unlike any other. Personal and bespoke travel just got that much more appealing with the Airbnb Luxe brand. As a part of the 2017 acquisition of Luxury Retreats, Airbnb Luxe continues to grow and so does its clientele.

All the offerings on this platform must pass a strict evaluation across 300+ criteria to meet the rigorous standards for both design and function. Guests and hosts alike know the bar for quality is quite high here, so gaining the rite of passage to Airbnb Luxe would surely grant you access to upscale clients.

Airbnb Luxe Fees

Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
The guest service fee varies depending on the accommodation, but the fee typically runs about $1,500 per guest, per night. Airbnb Luxe charges a customized host fee depending on the stay. Airbnb Luxe charges a customized listing fee depending on the stay.

Vacation Rental Sites Without Fees for Hosts

The age-old question, “What vacation rental sites are free for hosts?” can aptly be answered with none, but don’t fear just yet! There’s no such thing as a completely free vacation rental site because, at the end of the day, these companies need some cut of the booking to keep their operations running and continue to promote your business. It can be seen as more of a trade-off; you pay a percentage for having your listing shown on their site and they get your property more visibility and help to increase your bookings.

The upside is that there are some vacation rental sites with lower fees or platforms that have no barrier to entry. If you’re just getting your vacation rental off the ground, it’s best to stick with sites that don’t have a listing fee. Fortunately, there are a couple of options to choose from for listing fee-free or host fee-free sites.


Agoda started off in Asia in 2005 and was acquired by The Priceline Group, a world leader in online travel and related services, in 2007. Agoda offers over 1,250,000 accommodations, ranging from luxury hotels to budget hostels and private rooms or entire properties.

They pride themselves on reaching a global audience with an Asian focus, so if this fits your property, consider signing up. Whether your listing is in Asia or if you mainly attract guests from Asia, this site offers you plenty of exposure.

Their biggest selling point is that they take a minimal amount of your earnings as compared to its competitors. Sign-up is free, listing is free, and all of the onsite tools they offer are also free.

Agoda Fees

Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
Agoda retains a fee to cover the costs of each reservation, such as customer service costs. This varies depending on location and property. There are no fees whatsoever for using Agoda to list your property. There are no listing fees for Agoda


HomeEscape makes it easy to find and compare vacation rentals worldwide, without booking fees or processing fees. HomeEscape is commission-free for both owners and guests, making vacation rentals more affordable for everyone.

Through HomeEscape, property managers and owners offer a large selection of vacation homes with extensive amenities, including more space to relax and enjoy their stay, at a fraction of the cost of traditional resort accommodations. Their commission-free model means that no matter how many reservations you get, you’ll be turning a full profit. If you don’t get the guaranteed minimum of 6 reservations made through their site, you’ll get the next year of membership for free.

HomeEscape Fees

Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
There are no guest fees for HomeEscape There are no host fees for HomeEscape HomeEscape offers a limited-time promotion for new owners, who can sign up for an annual subscription of $199 per property (instead of $350). Besides this, owners and property managers can upload an unlimited number of properties for free, but they will not have access to the payment processor and will only get a maximum of 25 reservation requests.


Tripz.com is an innovative vacation rental marketplace that aims to be the number one low-cost provider of rental accommodation. Now, this is a good sell for owners seeking a free vacation rental listing site!

Their commitment to low cost is demonstrated through their pricing models. It runs on a no-booking fee basis – meaning neither travelers nor owners have any extra costs to pay. It also allows guests and hosts to communicate directly via an email messaging service.

They operate on a subscription basis. You’ll have to pay for a membership, but you’re never charged a commission for host, guest, or hidden fees. One flat cost with unlimited booking opportunities.

Tripz.com Fees

Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
There are no guest fees for Tripz.com There are no host fees for Tripz.com Owners can start listing their properties on Tripz.com from $4 per month for the Basic plan and up to $89 per month for the Premier plan.



9flats is a vacation rental listing website that offers over six million properties worldwide. They have a number of listings in some of the top European cities like Rome, Berlin, and London at competitive prices that help you to attract more clients and fill those empty slots on your reservation calendar.

Although the site has been successful, they have earned some negative reviews due to payment and customer service issues, so do be careful when listing your property there.

9flats Fees

Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
The guest service fee tends to be around 10% per booking, but may vary depending on the length of stay and total cost. 9flats takes a 12-15% commission on the booking total. There are no listing fees for 9flats


Founded in 1997, atraveo is part of the TUI Group and has over 300,000 properties from all over the world listed on its website, with a particular focus on Europe. Its affiliation with TUI helps to bring in a huge client base of all-inclusive travelers and higher-spenders. If you want in on that clientele, we recommend you list with atraveo.

atraveo remains a very international platform, with a website available in more than 10 languages, and a user-friendly owner area available in nine! You can now complement your own multilingual vacation rental site with a listing page that reaches an equal amount of international visitors.

atraveo Fees

Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
Around 15 to 20% of the reservation amount. Hosts on atraveo pay a 15% commission on confirmed bookings. There are no listing fees for atraveo


Only-apartments specializes in apartment rentals for short and medium stays across the globe. They have an instant booking feature that could help to increase your last-minute reservations as well as on-demand customer support if you have problems. Their website currently lists more than 150,000 apartments in 120 countries throughout the world.

Only-apartments Fees

Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
Guests pay a service fee of 15% to 18% of the booking total. There is a 1% management fee for hosts with a payment policy that includes payment in advance. In this case, Only-apartments takes care of handling the payment on their behalf and applies a fee of 1% over the amount charged to the guest (commission excluded).There are no host fees for Tripz.com There are no listing fees for Only-apartments


Vacationstayz is a vacation rental listing website letting travelers choose their perfect vacation pad from 20,000 destinations. Vacationstayz focuses on the guest experience and is completely free for travelers.

Vacationstayz Fees

Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
There are no guest fees for Vacationstayz Hosts pay a commission on a per-booking basis when they’re a free member. Vacationstayz doesn’t charge any listing fees for the free membership.

There is, however, the option to pay $199 a year for full membership, which includes SEO optimization, listing management and one featured listing.

Owner Direct

As implied by the name, Owner Direct provides a platform that bridges the communication between host and guest for smooth, transparent bookings. Founded in 1994, Owner Direct has over 25 years of experience in the industry and offers thousands of vacation rentals from all around the world. The company also prides itself on its usability, efficient customer service and transparent fees. You’ll never be thrown off by outrageous hidden costs.

Owner Direct Fees

Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
There are no guest fees for Owner Direct Owner Direct takes a 10% matching fee on successful bookings. There is an additional $100 fee if you’ve received more than two bookings during the financial year, to cover set-up, maintenance and marketing costs. There are no listing fees for Owner Direct


Abritel – France

Now part of the HomeAway group, Abritel is one of the leaders of the vacation rental sector in France. They maintain a global portfolio while keeping a focus on their French audience. Customer support is readily available with French natives and a multitude of other languages if you or your guests have any questions. If your clientele is mainly based in France or French-speaking countries then this is the platform for you.

There are over two million properties listed on the website, with tens of thousands in France, and many more in Spain, Italy, England, Brazil, the US and other locations.

Abritel Fees

Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
The guest service fee is around 6% of the rental amount, excluding the security deposit and additional taxes. There is an 8% fee consisting of: a 5% commission of the rental amount, and a 3% credit card processing fee. Listing your property is free, but you have to pay a commission on each booking. You can decide to choose the annual subscription instead: €249 with online booking and €399 without.

FeWo-direkt – Germany

FeWo-direkt continues to lead and conquer the vacation rental industry in Germany and many other German-speaking countries. FeWo-direkt is also part of the HomeAway group and has a portfolio consisting of over two million properties around the world, including over 200,000 in France, 150,000 in Italy, 50,000 in the UK and 7,000 in Germany.

If you’ve got a castle in the outskirts of Munich or a chalet in the Swiss Alps, FeWo-direkt will perfectly target the audience you’re hoping to book. This European powerhouse for vacation rentals will help you to attract European clients and fill up your reservations.

FeWo-direkt Fees

Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
The guest service fee is usually around 6% of the rental amount (excluding the security deposit and additional taxes). There is an 8% fee: 5% commission of the rental amount, including any fees, plus a 3% credit card processing fee charged on the total payment, including taxes and refundable damage deposits. Listing your property is free, but you have to pay a commission on each booking. You can decide to choose the annual subscription instead: €249 with online booking and €399 without.

Casamundo – Western Europe

From castles to igloos, there are over 700,000 homes listed on Casamundo – mostly in Europe and some in the USA, as well as Morocco and Turkey. Casamundo focuses on themed holidays, offering guests the opportunity to book a fishing trip or a getaway with their furry friend in a pet-friendly accommodation.

Casamundo recruits and selects some of the top vacation homes in the world by working with local specialists and maintaining a high level of quality and guest satisfaction. If you want to get listed with Casamundo, reach out to their support number or email listed on their website.

Casamundo Fees

Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
There are no guest fees for Casamundo
Casamundo charges owners an advertising and placement commission of 12% (plus VAT) of the rental fee per booking. There are no listing fees for Casamundo

Flat4day – Western Europe & Turkey

An official partner of Tripping, Flat4day offers vacation rentals and holiday homes across the globe.  They offer a variety of accommodations for European vacation dreams, but also extend their reach to the Middle East and Turkey, unlike its competitors.

Their website features gorgeous accommodations from over 1,000 cities in 80 different countries. Their most popular destinations include Istanbul, Amsterdam, St. Petersburg, Barcelona and Prague so if you’ve got a vacation home in one of those hot destinations, you can expect to gain some good traffic from this platform.

Flat4day Fees

Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
The guest service fee may vary, but it is usually around 25% of the booking total. This covers the costs of keeping the site running.
There are no host fees for Flat4day
There are no listing fees for Flat4day

Holiday Lettings – United Kingdom

Holiday Lettings was the UK’s largest independent vacation rental website when it was acquired by TripAdvisor in 2010. They maintain their focus on very English-esque stays like tudor-style homes and old manors tucked away in the countryside. Today, Holiday Lettings advertises 600,000 cottages, villas and apartments in over 150 countries worldwide, including nearly 55,000 in the UK.

Holiday Lettings Fees

Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
Travelers are charged a booking fee, which typically varies from 8% to 14.5% depending on the rental rate. Hosts pay a 3% fee on confirmed bookings, deducted from the guest’s booking total. There are no listing fees for Holiday Lettings

Niumba – Spain

Founded in 2005, Niumba was subsequently bought by TripAdvisor in 2013, becoming a part of its 25-website network and offering holiday properties to rent short or long-term all around the world.

Niumba maintains its uniqueness by focusing on a local client base in Spain. They have offerings through all parts of Spain from the heart of Basque Country to the rocky coves of the Canary Islands. Niumba prides itself on being a south of Europe expert and its client base is a reflection of that.

Niumba Fees

Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
Travelers are charged a booking fee, which typically varies from 8% to 14.5%, depending on the rental rate, and is automatically added to the total. Hosts pay a 3% fee per booking, deducted from their total. There are no listing fees for Niumba

North America

TurnKey Vacation Rentals

TurnKey was founded in 2010 and focuses exclusively on the U.S. market. They have a couple of requirements that must be met for a vacation home to make their list. The rental must be: a distinctive home, professionally cleaned, offer 24/7 guest support, have a fully-equipped kitchen, Wifi, and easy check-in.

Because their standards are consistent and demand high-quality, you’ll get top-notch guests in return. If you meet the minimum requirements, consider adding your vacation rental to this listing site to tap into a solid clientele that will responsibly look after your home.

TurnKey Vacation Rentals Fees

Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
There is around 10-12% charge for taxes and fees per booking. For all these services, TurnKey charges a 3-4% commission on bookings – half of what most of their competitors charge There are no listing fees for TurnKey



Founded in 2000, Bookabach is New Zealand’s most trusted resource for finding and securing vacation rentals and offers with more than 50,000 properties to stay in for a holiday. This is a company run by New Zealanders for New Zealanders. Although they have since been acquired by Expedia Group, they still keep the Kiwis in mind. Locals choose Bookabach because they know that the platform specializes in their needs and vacation desires.

At a time where people are staycationing more than ever before, tap into New Zealand’s local market and get your property listed with Bookabach.

Bookabach Fees

Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
Generally, guests pay a service fee of between 6-9% of the booking total, but it can be higher or lower depending on the booking amount. There is a 5.75% commission on bookings made using Online Booking. There are no listing fees for Bookabach


Part of the HomeAway network, Stayz is the number one website for vacation rentals in Australia. Stayz has conquered the Aussie vacation rental market for years and continues its commitment to keep the locals in mind no matter how global they become. There are more than 40,000 properties listed on the site in over 2,000 unique locations.

Stayz Fees

Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
Guests on Stayz pay a service fee of 2%. Hosts pay a 7% commission on all successful bookings and a 10% commission for bookings paid for offline (e.g. via bank transfer). There are no listing fees with Stayz



Founder, Roshan D’Silva, wanted to bring the world of vacation rentals to his hometown in India and decided to create Tripvillas. This platform came to life in 2009 and remains a leader in the vacation rental sector in Asia-Pacific and offers over 200,000 properties to choose from, including over 2,500 homes in the Philippines, 5,000 in India and nearly 3,000 in Thailand. Tripvillas also lists international properties from all around the world.

Your vacation rental property will benefit from Tripvillas Asia-centric base, but international targeting. Their inventory continues to grow as the amount of international travelers climbs too.

Tripvillas Fees

Guest fees Host fees Listing fees
There are no guest fees for Tripvillas Hosts can either pay a 20% commission on all successful bookings, or pay an annual fee to avoid extra charges. Annual Tripvillas subscriptions cost $299, and come with the added benefit of not having to pay any fees on bookings.

Which listing site is best for vacation rental owners?

We’ve listed about forty vacation rental listing sites for you to choose from. While it’s always advisable to list on multiple platforms to get more bookings, it’s still nearly impossible to get your business published on every site (even with a robust channel manager!). Each platform has its own characteristics, pricing, and audience so it can be difficult to decide which will generate the most bookings for your business. There are a couple of factors that will help you narrow down your search and choose the best vacation rental sites for you and your business.

Consider your audience

At the end of the day, it all comes down to who you’re trying to attract. If you’re a budget vacation rental, you might not want to publish your listing on a luxury travel website. Likewise, if your stay isn’t actually kid-friendly don’t publish on family-oriented listing sites. When you aim for the wrong audience you have a couple of consequences that could end up being quite detrimental to your business.

When you don’t take your audience into consideration, you probably won’t get many listings. Let’s take the example of the budget vacation rental. Maybe your business offers a lot of year-round promotions and a stellar price for the area. If you’re advertising to high-end clientele, they won’t care what the price is, thus preventing you from targeting the people who actually want to book your stay.

Even if they do make a reservation with you, they’re not going to be happy because it’s not the type of accommodation they’re looking for. By targeting the wrong audience, you will have guests who are unsatisfied because you weren’t able to provide them with what they’re looking for. There’s a vacation rental out there for every type of traveler. Make sure you’re connecting with the one who will find your home to be a perfect fit.

Flat fee or commission-based

Even if you do target the right audience, how many bookings do you anticipate getting? If you have limited availability and only keep your home open to guests for a couple of weeks out of the year, a flat, subscription-based fee might not be right for you.

Alternatively, if you get a lot of bookings with a large earning, you might be giving away too much of a cut by choosing vacation rental sites that operate off commission. Take a look at the average amount of bookings you had in the past year and see which option would have given you a greater return. If this is your first year operating a vacation rental business, stick with a commission-based platform with no listing fee, like Airbnb, so you don’t risk losing money by not getting enough listings to cover the cost of a listing site subscription.


Who is going to help you maximize your peak season? You can run promotions all day long, but if your listing site isn’t helping you get noticed during the best time of the year, who will? When you’re selecting the sites to list with, keep a couple of general year-round options in mind as well as ones that especially shine during your peak season. If you own a beach rental, get listed on a villa site or local listing platform that advertises during your best moments. Likewise, if you’re located in a top ski destination, your listing should be easily found on a winter-focused platform or one that specializes in cabins and chalets.

Nearly 40% of Millennials are comfortable buying homes online

A new survey suggests a generation primed for first-time homeownership is more likely to replace physical walkthroughs with digital tools.

Excerpt via AD

Will millennials still want to shop for a home with a 30-year mortgage the same way they order lunch once the housing market cools off and the masks go into storage? Time will tell. But as the distinction between seeing and “experiencing” a property continues to break down, future generations may come to consider the idea of leaving the comfort of their own homes in order to buy a new one as quaint and antiquated.

A new survey from Zillow yielded some surprising findings about just how willing millennials are to pull the trigger and become homeowners without ever setting foot on the grounds of a prospective property.

Specifically, 39% of millennials (those born between 1981 and 1996, per Zillow’s methodology) say they’d feel comfortable buying a home that they’ve only ever seen online. A further 59% of millennials say they’d be at least somewhat comfortable putting down an offer based on a virtual—but not in-person—walkthrough of a given property.

The results are timely for a generation whose members have reached, or are rapidly approaching, 34—the typical age for a first-time home buyer. And notably, millennials were more willing than other generations in Zillow’s survey of more than 2,000 Americans to become homeowners over the internet. That’s slightly more than the respective 36% of younger Gen Z–ers who felt the same, and far greater than their Gen X (19%) and baby boomer (7%) counterparts.

As the generation who came of age alongside the internet, millennials were most likely to utilize the digital home-browsing tools that have emerged during the pandemic. A full 82% of millennials surveyed said they’d like to use 3D home tours during the shopping process, with a further 85% expressing interest in interactive digital floor plans.

“It’s clear that strong demand from the next generation of buyers will keep real estate technology in place long after the pandemic is over,” Zillow senior vice president of product Matt Daimler said in a press statement. “Digital tools rapidly adopted during the pandemic not only make home shopping safer, they make it faster and easier.”

Interested in learning more about our digital tools for home buyers and sellers? Schedule a consultation call . We look forward to hearing from you.

Everything You Need to Know About Designing an ADU

More time at home this year translated to more home renovation projects—including, for many, the addition of accessory dwelling units. So, how do they function?

“Up until a few years ago, ‘ADU’ was a term used mostly by architects, as part of their professional jargon. The acronym [accessory dwelling units] has only become part of the lexicon in the last year or so. Now, it seems as if everyone is designing, building, or dreaming about an ADU,” says Mary Maydan, founder and principal of San Francisco Bay area firm Maydan Architects.

“The rise in popularity of ADUs started before the pandemic.… [But] COVID-19 took this interest to a whole new level. After sheltering in place and working from home, we are all trying to fit a lot more functions into our homes. The possibility of having an additional structure in the backyard that can house a home office, a gym, or a hangout place for the family has made ADUs hugely attractive to almost everyone.”

Curious to know what the fuss is all about? Below, we break down everything you need to know about ADUs.

Has the pandemic made you rethink your living space? Click here for active homes with ADU’s in South Puget Sound

Interested in building your own ADU? Schedule a consultation call . We look forward to hearing from you!

What is an ADU?

An accessory dwelling unit is a fully functional living space that can fall into one of three categories:

  • Interior, within the primary residence and often is converted space in a basement or attic, for example.
  • Attached, built as an addition to the main house.
  • Detached, a separate standalone structure like a garage, shed, cottage, or carriage house.

“ADU is a very broad term and covers everything from temporary construction to backyard offices to lane houses and converted garages. The intended use has a major design and planning impact because things like plumbing, square footage, and foundation requirements add significant time and expense,” explains Robbie Friedman, cofounder of ootBox, a company that designs, builds, and fully equips 10-foot shipping containers, complete with turnkey furnishings. “If a user just wants a home office, they can probably get away without plumbing while staying under 120 square feet. If they want an in-law suite—or something that is technically habitable—it becomes an entirely different project.”

Friedman says now, 10 months into the pandemic, he’s seeing the greatest need for dedicated environments for remote learning and working from home. “Some have even brought their retail business home—such as hairstylists, tattoo artists, private practitioners, and others,” he notes. “We focus on providing 80-square-foot portable units that users can rent until their needs change.”

designing an ADU
An ADU by Palo Alto, California–based firm Maydan Architects /  Dave Edwards

How to create an ADU

ADUs may be the conversion of existing spaces or new builds, depending on the space available and the needs of the clients. Maydan says her clients are primarily interested in independent additions that are designed specifically for their needs and offer additional living space, although she does see a fair amount of converting garages, which is less expensive. “However,” she says, “converted garages do require a considerable upgrade. Often a project like this requires significant electrical work, as well as new systems, such as HVAC and plumbing.”

Christina Roughan, founder of Roughan Interiors in Weston, Connecticut, and New York, says: “A new build is typically the easiest to create as it’s our vision, with our clients’ intent, from start to finish. That being said, renovating an existing pool house to an office/kids’ space can be just as fun and turn into a spectacular functional interior.”

Jim Westover, residential practice leader at William Duff Architects in San Francisco, says his firm engages in both types of ADUs. “In dense urban areas like San Francisco, we are more likely to convert existing space—sometimes in a basement or an area behind a garage that lends itself well to being an ADU. In more suburban areas, it could be a conversion, addition, or independent new construction.”

Similarly, Ian Read of Oakland, California, firm Medium Plenty has experience with both conversions and new builds. “Many of the early projects were conversions, typically garages. Because the existing footprint of these structures were grandfathered in, there was some benefit to using them, although they almost always needed to be fully rebuilt,” he says.

For Wendy Yates, creative director and founder of Abigail-Elise Design Studio, conversions are more common. She cites garages and attics as viable options “that have the potential of adding more usable square footage to your property.” But she adds, “If independent additions are what you’re looking for, there are some great build-it-yourself kits that can be added in a backyard…. Shipping containers are quite easy to move onto a property, and they make ideal tiny units if designed well,” referring to structures similar to Friedman’s ootBox.

designing ADUs
A guest shed by Oakland, California–based design and architecture firm Medium Plenty. / Mariko Reed

What are the benefits of an ADU?

ADUs are employed to carve out areas for work, play, learning, or additional living space such as in-law suites, nanny/caretaker’s dwellings, potential quarantine quarters for at-risk or sick family members, or rental apartment units. David Shove-Brown, partner and principal of //3877, notes, “A popular reasoning behind adding an ADU is many find the value of having family members close by, whether it be allowing aging parents to have their own place or a young graduate needing their own space.”

While creating extra living space is certainly welcome—especially this year when all families have been spending more time at home—Shove-Brown sees the main motivation for creating these ADUs as a money-making stream in the form of a rental unit or by increasing property value. “For some families, an ADU providing additional income can help ease the cost of a mortgage,” he says. Roughan adds, “ADUs increase the value of a home immediately and give the owner the opportunity to have a room outside the home that becomes a second dwelling on the property—a place to rest and enjoy peace and quiet. It can serve as a guest house or place for teenage sleepovers.”

designing ADUs
Designer Christina Roughan converted her late 1700s-era shed into an office and design studio, featuring stone-walled interiors, a fireplace, a kitchenette, a bathroom, and a loft. / Sean Litchfield

What’s the key to a highly functional ADU?

“It’s all about maximizing flexibility,” Westover says about the most critical consideration when designing ADUs. “Life throws curveballs; someone might build an ADU to use as a home office, a gym, or a pool house, but then they may need it as an in-law unit,” he continues. “The ADUs we’ve done have that flexibility. We designed one that opens up to the pool for entertaining but also functions as a private two-bedroom house for our client’s visiting parents.”

Yates agrees about the necessity of multi-functionality, “because we believe needs change over time, and it’s better to be prepared for the future,” she says. “For instance, if you add a fold-down wall table to a home gym, the room can quickly be turned into an office for a Zoom call. Or maximize the area by installing a Murphy bed, minibar, or electric plug-in cooktop.”

Yates also advises designing the space to be timeless rather than trendy, thereby reducing the need to renovate in the future. “Keep the color palette neutral to allow for easy accessorizing,” she says. “Pay attention to lighting by increasing your use of natural light, layering lamps, or including wired fixtures. This will give you options for activities that require more or less luminosity so that the area feels more intentional and becomes a comfortable living environment.”

designing ADUs
A California ADU by Medium Plenty. / Melissa Kaseman

What are some challenges to consider?

Regardless of where designers are based, local codes and regulations have posed the greatest hardship in successfully creating ADUs. Maydan, Westover, and Read all recall difficulties in the Bay Area well before the COVID era. “In the past, many municipalities made it difficult to create additional dwelling units on most sites by requiring added parking and setbacks in an attempt to guard against illegal rentals. A common solution was to design an ‘accessory building,’ which created the necessary space, but only allowed for a half bathroom or a kitchenette—not both. We would typically build in a utility sink or floor drain in a way that a shower and/or kitchen could be added,” Read explains. “As housing became more scarce (and expensive) there was enough momentum to loosen up the requirements for the creation of units. Within the last five years is when we have seen ADUs become a more prevalent project type.”

Spatial constraints on-site are the main issue. “Unless you have a huge yard, then you are trading outdoor space for building footprint,” he says. “Utilities and other logistics are also a factor, but space, especially in the Bay Area, is the crux.”

In Washington, D.C., where //3877 is based, Shove-Brown had to endure municipality regulation issues similar to California. However, he notes the District has eased restrictions through municipal code changes. Now, he says, “the biggest challenges all depend on the infrastructure of the house—figuring out how to separate the electrical systems from the main house and the ADU, and also determine where the water source should come from.”

Friedman, who’s based in Columbus, Ohio, also acknowledges designing around local permits as the biggest challenge. He says, “You can simplify the process and minimize costs by keeping the structure small and without plumbing. But building a small space that is still inspiring and usable raises a whole different set of challenges.”

The restrictive footprint must be taken into account with every design decision—from the placement of doorways to furniture selection to decor elements. “The criteria for creating a useful, highly functional ADU is the same thought and attention as designing for a full-size house—they’re just smaller,” Westover explains. “If the ADU is going to really serve its purpose, it needs to be something you can actually live in comfortably.”

And one pitfall that should be obvious but is sometimes not considered enough is the budget. “Often people expect building a small space to be inexpensive, but it is actually quite the opposite,” Maydan says. “A small structure costs more per square foot than a big one since there are many budget line-items that don’t change linearly. A small structure still incurs the costs of engineering, permits, grading, and drainage, along with the actual construction of the structure. It often ends up being much more expensive than the homeowners anticipated.”

#Microhousing: Could empty hotels be converted into high-end housing? Some say yes

‘There will be survivors and there will be casualties, and I think those casualties will be ripe for redevelopment,’ says Boston-based developer Ted Tye

Excerpt via Inman

As the pandemic continues to impact the travel and hospitality industries across the country, questions about what will happen to out-of-business hotels loom.

While affordable housing is often proposed as a solution, some developers are hoping to take the idea one step further and convert old hotel rooms into market-rate or even luxury properties.

Vivo Investment Group, a development company that launched in May out of the Los Angeles area, has acquired four shuttered hotels in Utah, Arizona, North Carolina and Indiana that they are in the process of converting into studio apartments that will range from $750 to $1,250. The idea is to offer small units that are modern and stylish — living space, a modern bathroom and a kitchen with stainless steel appliances but also features like gyms and game rooms within the building — but less pricey than a typical urban apartment.

“Micro housing is nothing new in expensive cities,” Vivo President and founder Dan Norville told Inman. “There are also some brands that are languishing due to the pandemic and lack of capital investment and that is where we saw real oppordvertisement

Studios are an obvious conversion choice due to the way hotels are built. With single rooms, building a one-bedroom apartment often requires a more extensive teardown than adding a larger bathroom and a kitchen to an existing unit.

That said, Norville’s team does turn some larger suites into one-bedroom apartments and is currently in the process of working out arrangements with several higher-end hotels to build luxury studios with more of a hotel feel. Those apartments would still be small but would have amenities such as room service and dry cleaning. They currently have projects in the works in Indiana, North Carolina and Florida.

“We’re doing conversions to fit into a price point that no new developer can build because it’s just not economically feasible to build new apartments and charge $800 a month,” Norville said. “But we’re able to do it through this reuse process in which we basically convert and recycle these hotels and then reuse them for housing purposes.”

A scenario in which hotels will have to either reconvert or close is currently playing out across the country. Luxe Rodeo Drive, an 86-room hotel on LA’s most expensive street, was the first luxury hotel to close its doors in the city earlier this month.

Heather Rozman, executive director of the Hotel Association of Los Angeles, told the LA Times that as many as one in every four properties in the city are currently struggling to pay their mortgages due to the severe drop in bookings that came amid the coronavirus pandemic.

“We anticipate many hotels won’t survive,” she said.

But on the other side, there is a severe need for housing, be it affordable, market-rate or micro. According to data from Freddie Mac, 2.5 million additional units would need to be built to make up for the housing shortage currently observed in 29 states and adequately supply those who are looking to buy or rent properties.

Affordable, student and micro housing are easy redevelopment choices because they do not require the kind of top-down renovation that comes with converting rooms into larger apartments, Tye said. If a developer hopes to build larger condos, the price of such an extensive renovation often makes less sense than buying the land and tearing down the building.

That said, the pandemic has forced everyone to explore all kinds of possibilities to convert highly valuable unused urban space into something profitable. Along with luxury units, other developers have explored the possibility of turning suites into workspaces, design and art showrooms and even retail and restaurant space.

Like everyone else in the industry, the team at National Development is also monitoring the crisis to see what kind of opportunities arise from the current crisis afflicting hotels. He predicts that many hotels, particularly well-placed ones, will survive the pandemic. But those that have been struggling may choose to cut their losses, consolidate their debts and get redeveloped.

“It may never get back to where it was before,” Tye said. “There will be survivors and there will be casualties and I think those casualties will be ripe for some redevelopment over time.”

Trend Report: ADUs Move From Back of House to Center Stage

Photo by Propel Studio Architecture – Search exterior home design ideas An in-law ADU in Portland, Oregon, for aging in place; design by Propel Studio Architecture; photo by Carlos Rafael Photography

Excerpt via Houzz

ADUs, or accessory dwelling units, are compact, fully contained living spaces sited on the same lot as a primary home. Also known as garage apartments, carriage homes, granny flats and in-law units, ADUs can be attached or detached structures. As housing prices soar and zoning regulations change in response, owners around the country are eagerly welcoming these tiny spaces home.

Click here for active homes with ADU’s in South Puget Sound

 Let us know if you’d like us to help with your custom property search. Schedule a consultation call or get in touch.  We look forward to hearing from you!

Photo by Pearl Remodeling – Browse garage photos

Money matters. Budget concerns and housing costs are the primary factors behind this ADU boom, especially in cities, says Lucas Gray, principal at Propel Studio Architecture in Portland, Oregon. “These places are being forced to address housing issues, and ADUs are one of the tools they’re using to do that,” he says. How? Empty nesters downsize into ADUs and rent their main house; owners rent out ADUs for short- or long-term use; family members (older parents and adult children) move in for comfort and savings. Other homeowners want a studio, gym or office. “For clients who are considering a rear addition or going up, ADUs provide a third option for extra living space,” says Jim Walker, owner of Copper Sky Renovations in Atlanta.

Walker’s Product Picks: Conserv Stackable Compact Waasher & Dryer, Quiet Glide Maple Rolling Ladder Kit, MOD LED Mirrored Medicine Cabinet

Copper Sky Renovations

Photo by Copper Sky Renovations – Look for landscaping pictures

Location can affect square footage. Regional building codes make a difference. For example, in Portland, city codes limit an ADU to 800 square feet. In Los Angeles, “most are 400 to 500 square feet, but some people with big budgets and big lots aim for the largest possible space, which can be up to 1,200 square feet,” says Ron Cohen, CEO of Pearl Remodeling in Los Angeles. Atlanta restricts ADUs to 750 square feet.

Smart ideas for small spaces:

Lucas Gray: Full-panel glass doors that look onto a garden, European-style 24-inch appliances, 22-inch kitchen sinks.

Jim Walker:Vaulted ceilings, curbless showers, sleeping lofts, skylights, lots of windows, lighter colors, side balconies, and outside stairs if you’re building over a garage, to save indoor floor space.

Ron Cohen: Walls with custom bookshelves and cabinets, Murphy beds that double as desks, mini split AC units, pocket doors, flush-mount ceiling lights, and kitchen bars or counters for dining.

Holly & Associates, Inc

Photo by Holly & Associates, Inc – Search dining room design ideas

Keep costs in mind. “The biggest misconception is what they cost,” Walker says. “Clients think they’ll save money by doing these. But it’s like building a mini house in your backyard; you need the same plumbing, electrical, HVAC.” Gray agrees: “Understand that these projects are an investment, and it takes time and money to build them.” Simple choices often start at $150,000 and average around $250,000; other choices can top out far above that.

Ways to save. “ADUs are unique in that often they’re tying into the utilities of the main house for sewer, water and electric,” Gray says. “So if we put in LED lighting, extra insulation, low-flow water, solar panels and efficient appliances, that all saves money if the owners are renting it out.” Walker uses the EarthCraft program to make his ADUs energy-efficient.

WSM Craft

Photo by WSM Craft – More garage ideas

It’s only the start. “The future looks good for ADUs!” Cohen says. “They are a great value for the usual homeowner who wants to increase the value of their property.” “As long as codes and regulations don’t get in the way, they’ll continue to grow in popularity,” Gray says. “They increase density; they create a more sustainable way to live; they’re cool ways to blend urban apartment living with a little outdoor space and privacy. I think they’re fantastic.”

Cohen’s Product Picks: Pilaster Designs Convertible Writing Desk, VONN Tureis LED Ceiling Light, Rinnai Natural Gas Tankless Water Heater

See something you like? Or would you like us to help with a custom property search? Schedule a consultation call or get in touch.  We look forward to hearing from you!

How Ruth Bader Ginsburg advanced fair housing

The US Supreme Court Justice is being remembered as a champion for civil rights, including fair housing

Excerpt via Inman

September 21, 2020

U.S Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who died on Friday, is being remembered as a champion for civil rights, including fair housing. Ginsburg, the second woman to serve on the nation’s highest court, died from pancreatic cancer at age 87.

On Monday, the mayors of Minnesota’s Twin Cities, Minneapolis and St. Paul, declared Sept. 21, “Ruth Bader Ginsburg Day” in recognition of Ginsburg’s record as a champion for gender equality, racial justice, fair elections and fair housing. In regards to the latter, the mayors cited her “decisive fifth vote to uphold the Fair Housing Act, a monumental victory for our Twin Cities in the continued struggle to realize housing as a human right.”

In 2015, Ginsburg joined in the 5-4 majority in Texas Department of Housing & Community Affairs v. The Inclusive Communities Project, Inc., a ruling that upheld the Fair Housing Act’s “disparate impact” standard which is meant to prevent discrimination against protected classes under facially neutral policies — i.e. policies that don’t seem discriminatory on their face — regardless of intent. Earlier this month, the Trump administration weakened the standard, a move that was criticized by public interest groups, including the National Fair Housing Alliance, and the National Association of Realtors.

In a statement, the National Fair Housing Alliance President and CEO Lisa Rice said that Ginsburg “voted numerous times on the bench to advance fair housing” and specifically cited the disparate impact decision.

“This ruling affirmed the use of disparate impact as a tool to help make housing more accessible for families with children, women, LGBTQ people, people with disabilities, people of faith, and communities of color, and it has played a critical role in advancing civil rights and equal opportunity and addressing the segregation that still persists in America,” Rice said.

“Like the rest of the nation, NAR mourns the loss of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg after a valiant battle with pancreatic cancer. We appreciate hers and all federal efforts to strengthen fair housing protections in America, a fight which has taken on increased importance in light of the events of 2020. Our thoughts remain with Justice Bader Ginsburg’s family and all of her love ones as the nation celebrates her incredible life and grieves her passing.”

Twin Peaks Meets Le Corbusier on the Left Bank in Paris

Interior architect Rodolphe Parente’s client asked him to incorporate three things into his apartment: David Lynch, Buddhism, and Le Corbusier

Excerpt via AD

French interior architect Rodolphe Parente was 25 years old and working as a designer for the grande dame of French design, Andrée Putman, when he first met his client, a young collector. A few years later, Rodolphe set up his own studio, in 2010, the client came looking for him and asked him to work on his 645-square-foot apartment in Paris. Rodolphe remembers, “He had a few very strong wishes: He loves [filmmaker] David Lynch and collects his work, is a Buddhist, and also loves everything modern and very Le Corbusier.

Kind of a mix between architect Eileen Gray, Le Corbusier’s Roquebrune project, and David Lynch. The idea was to do one thing, this amazing floor, and then a concrete box. Everything here is in concrete. But a ‘soft’ concrete—very sensual.” Even the large bookcase is concrete, but it floats above the floor. Incredibly, it all feels very light.

pink metal dining chairs and brass table next to onewall white kitchen
In the dining area, vintage garden chairs by Gae Aulenti are paired with a Rodolphe-designed brass pedestal table topped with green marble.Photo: Olivier Amsellem

Working together, Rodolphe and his client came up with something austere but glamorous. “This is a 1910 Parisian apartment and we just took everything out,” Rodolphe says. “All the moldings, the mantle—out. This took two years of renovation.” The main feature of the remodeled one-bedroom apartment is inarguably the red floor, a tribute to David Lynch’s Twin Peaks. Rodolphe tinted the oak parquet a scarlet hue, then applied a super brilliant resin to “give off reflections and the impression that everything is wet, shiny, and reflective.”

concrete room with floating bookcase and red floor looking into bedroom
A peek into the bedroom and another look at that floating bookcase, where a statement vase by Jean-Baptiste Fastrez is on display.Photo: Olivier Amsellem
bedroom with red floor gold bedside table and silver lamp
In the bedroom, the brass bedside table is designed by Rodolphe himself, and the reading lamp is by Felix Aublet.Photo: Olivier Amsellem
concrete bedroom with grayscale painting
The opposite corner of the bedroom. Artwork by David Lynch.Photo: Olivier Amsellem

Rodolphe continues, “I also designed a stainless-steel dressing closet. He loves fashion, so this was important. A nice place for his clothes. And also, flashes of shiny brass, which read as gold and relate to Buddhism.”