Saint Lucia’s Short Term Rental Boom

Short-Term Rental Investment Property in Saint Lucia

The Caribbean island of St. Lucia, is a hotspot for travelers seeking a taste of easy living in a beautiful landscape. In recent years, the short-term rental market in St. Lucia has witnessed a remarkable surge, providing visitors with diverse accommodation options. In this article, we’ll delve into the reasons behind the short-term rental boom and explore what makes this tropical haven an ideal destination for both tourists and property investors.

St. Lucia, is home to a beautiful landscape that attracts tourists from all over the globe. The iconic Pitons of the south provide dramatic views in the area, and also provide a number of natural attractions for tourists to see. In the northern part of the island, there are beautiful beaches and established resorts providing the area with a more lively and energetic feel. This diversity is reflected in the short-term rental market, where travelers can choose accommodations ranging from luxurious villas with breathtaking views to charming cottages nestled in the heart of local communities.

Saint Lucia’s Move to a Tourism Forward Economy

During the colonization period of the 1600’s to the 1800’s, Saint Lucia developed its agricultural industry starting with sugar plantations. As modern technology progressed into the 20th century, banana exports became a larger part of the islands global exports. Later on in the 20th century, as global travel grew, Saint Lucia saw an opportunity to expand into another industry to help it diversify its global offerings.

Moving into early 2000’s, bad weather, and increasing competition in the banana industry lead Saint Lucia to pivot to a more tourism-forward strategy. This initially brought in the larger resorts, which fueled a small boom in areas where those resorts were built. In 2011, Airbnb began its expansion from US properties into other overseas markets. This eventually lead to the expansion into Saint Lucia and competitors of Airbnb soon followed. This lead to an increase in sales of residential properties as investors started looking at Saint Lucia opportunities.

Economics Add Fuel to The Fire

In 2007-2009, the world took a devastating blow as the global real estate market collapsed. Although US and other larger countries saw a rebound over the coming years, the recovery in Saint Lucia was slow. It wasn’t until 2014 when Saint Lucia started seeing prices return to their previous peak levels. Although this was unfortunate for Saint Lucia, it meant that pricing on the island was much cheaper relative to other areas in the world. Combine this with the expansion of Airbnb, and you have a recipe for an amazing boom in the short-term rental market that took place between 2014 and 2020 as individuals and other investors bought and built inexpensive properties to rent out.

Future Opportunities

The 2020 crisis was another big hit to the global economy. Globally, the world came to a stand still, and travel disappeared. Saint Lucia took a hit during this time as well, and similar to other periods, the recovery lags behind the larger countries, and is now returning to the pre-pandemic levels. With those lagging affects, investors are starting to look at Saint Lucia again for opportunities. Now considering the remote work movement that has also begun, it is easy to see how we may be at the beginning phases of our next big short-term rental boom in Saint Lucia.

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