Owners of holiday home rentals set for a good 2011, research suggests

The average holiday home owner earned an annual income of almost £9,000 in 2010 per let making the outlook for 2011 positive.

Overall owners advertising through holidaylettings.co.uk earned an estimated £350 million in rental income in 2010. With 40,000 homes advertised on the website that amounts to an average annual income of £8,750 per holiday let.

The multimillion-pound figure is based on average weekly rental rate data and the average conversion rate of enquiries to confirmed bookings, in accordance with advertiser feedback.

‘At a time when the traditional holiday booking season is just weeks away and the revised Furnished Holiday Lettings tax reliefs have just been announced, this should be truly encouraging reading for holiday home owners,’ said Kate Stinchcombe-Gillies, spokesperson for holidylettings.co.uk.

Looking ahead to 2011, those who have already vested an interest in a holiday next year are steering these trends in the holiday rental industry. Half of all holiday enquiries sent in the last three months through holidaylettings.co.uk were for 2011 with some 2011 summer holiday enquiries sent as early as July.

It has found that family homes appeal most during summer months and of those booking ahead, one third were looking for accommodation during the school summer holidays. Some 71% of holiday home renters are families with young children.

Turkey is currently top of the summer bill, attracting the highest proportion of summer holiday enquiries, as a percentage of all enquiries. While January breaks are dominated by Canaries winter sun and skiing in France, Austria and Italy. Bulgaria is the fourth most popular ski destination, ahead of Switzerland.

Its destination hotspots for summer 2011 based on enquiries sent in the last three months are Turkey, Spain, Portugal, Cyprus, Italy, France and Florida. Villas and apartments in the Canary Islands are the most popular for winter sun breaks. Half, 13,700, of all enquiries for the Canary Islands in the last three months have been for a holiday between December and March 2011, compared to 35% of enquiries for Florida holidays during this period.

French ski chalets benefit most from demand for ski holidays. January is currently the most enquired about month for ski holidays, being led by France, Austria, Italy, Bulgaria and Switzerland.

UK holiday cottages are popular with festive travellers. The focus for December holidays this year is on New Year, where three-day breaks dominate. With the key dates falling on weekends this year there is greater flexibility in arrival/departure dates and therefore length of stay.

Some 6,500 people have enquired about breaks starting on 30 December, of which more than half, 53%, desire three night stays. Surprisingly, 749 people have enquired about starting their holiday on Christmas Day. The 10 most popular UK destinations for breaks over the Christmas period are Stratford upon Avon, Central London, Cirencester, Croyde in Devon, Edinburgh, Stow on the Wold in the Cotswolds, Dartmouth, Bath, St Ives and the Forest of Dean. The most popular destination in Wales is Bala in Gwynedd.

‘The destination hotspots are not a huge surprise as the strength of the euro means that to keep costs down people are continuing to look outside of the Eurozone for their main holiday and Turkey has all of the appeal of a European holiday, without the expense,’ said Stinchcombe-Gillies.

‘With regards the imminent festive holiday season, UK cottages and farmhouses always appeal at this time of year because of the relative ease of access and this year with the promise of a white Christmas it seems to be particularly popular,’ she added.

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