Turning an STR into a Traditional Rental

5 Replies

We have been hosting an Airbnb for over a year and have cash flowed more than the home would as a SFR. However, the work we have to do (we do the turnover most of the time), along with the aggravations that come with dealing with the general public have made it not worth it any more for us, and we'd like to convert it to a traditional SFR. We have a property manager for another SFR in town and they said furnished rentals are too much trouble, so they won't handle it if we leave it furnished. Liquidating the furnishings and homewares of an entire house seems like a major PITA, so we'd like to make it as painless as possible while still recouping some funds. What would be the most efficient way to do this? Selling piecemeal on Craigslist? Hiring an Estate Sale company? Organizing a garage sale? Has anyone done this before?

I feel the answers to my current concern are obvious, but I thought I'd ask the community to see if anyone has an idea I hadn't thought of. Thanks in advance.

I feel your pain! STR are not for everyone for the exact reason you listed. Dealing with PEOPLE on a day to day basis can be very stressful and it is unfortunate when the bad seeds come along... and they do come along. I self manage 5 vacation rentals remotely. I enjoy it and the returns are fantastic! But for now I'm sticking with the 5 and have moved back into the LTR space.

I've never tried to rent a furnished LTR but I would imagine that would come with many of the downsides of a STR so I think I'd also get rid of the furnishings.

Criagslist is not what it used to be. Items will sit there for long periods of time to the point where I generally find it's more cost efficient to give them away free or even pay someone to haul them off just to get it over with. The FREE section on Craigslist is still popping. Other than that I don't have much luck with furniture or appliances. Throw your stuff on there for a day or two for a reasonable price and see if you get any action. Also try the Next Door app. Use TAKL to pay someone to haul stuff off. 

Good luck! 

Agree with Lucas. But I will add that I have had luck in several regions with selling appliances and furnishings on Facebook Marketplace. Other than that, be sure to use ITS DEDUCTIBLE to get your maximum value from donating stuff.

Thanks for your post, Jason. We are considering doing the same thing with one of our Airbnbs. 

We have a lot of estate sales around where we live.  I am not sure how lucrative they are, but they seem to sell a lot (most?) of the household stuff-- and they will sell anything you want, even used linens.  I do know our local companies charge nothing upfront except a small advertising fee, and then take 30% of the total receipts. You don't have to set up or organize anything. 

Wondering though-- has anyone done this before? and have you made any money? 

Thanks in advance for any insight. 


Thanks everyone for your replies. Since the rental market doesn't pick up until the spring, at least we have some time to weigh our options.

@Lucas Carl Yes, our returns have been great as well, but not great enough to afford a housekeeper for every turnover. We've just had an extended string of "champagne taste with a beer budget" guests whose reviews have not matched what most of our guests had historically given, so those jabs hurt way more when we are putting in so much personal work into giving them a good experience. We found our sweet spot in rates to where we are booked 16-18 days per month, but the market won't let us raise the rate to afford a housekeeper.

@Chuck Kramer I am considering putting the big pieces in storage (I work for a storage company so it's free), and then sell those piecemeal on Facebook like you suggested or Next Door/Offer Up. The smaller items I'm leaning towards a garage sale. Can you clarify what you mean by using an item's deductible to get maximum value for donations?

@Pat Mulligan I will probably shop around for Estate Sale companies here. I'd be willing to sacrifice 30% to hand off all the hassle to them. If they can even sell used linens, hallelujah.

@Jason S. My auto correct must have kicked in. Intuit has a service called It’s Deductible and is usually free. It uses a large database to estimate value of donated items. 

It’s widely report d that people substantially underestimate the value of donated items. This service gives you the value (after a few questions) and is solidly accepted by IRS and it is supported by empirical data. Therefore you get maximum value for your deduction.