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Residents contend short-term renters want Villages lifestyle without long-term commitment

Residents contend short-term renters want Villages lifestyle without long-term commitment

Short-term renters are a hot topic, especially during Snowbird season when lines are long, traffic is congested and tempers are short.

Residents of the Village of Buttonwood recently made it known that they are not happy that a home in their neighborhood was recently purchased solely for the purpose of short-term rentals.

Many residents, who have bought their homes and settled into a comfortable lifestyle, say they are the ones paying the price for the revolving door of investment properties in their neighborhood.

“Short-term renters are really here for a short vacation or visit. Obviously, there are no age restrictions or requirements to learn how The Villages works. We are a very large community of mostly retirees. Most of us respect that and understand that there are residents of different ages and physical abilities. A short-term renter may not fully understand the situation or respect it,” said Tom Ruhmann of the Village of Dunedin.

Janet Cisewski of the Village of Virginia Trace said there are several rental houses in her neighborhood and she doesn’t like it.

“In addition to the large amount of large dogs running around, we have to deal with large/small moving vans coming and going, and a lot more traffic. There are also multiple service trucks that go to these rentals. Let’s get rid of rentals,” she said.

Peter Capo of the village of Poinciana said the deed should have had provisions on rental restrictions.

“The name of this community is Villages, not Vacation Place!” Capo said. “The only justification for the snowbirds is that they are here all year round, poorly planned infrastructure would be burdened 12 months of the year.”

However, villager Edward Diamantis said rentals are an important part of the fabric of The Villages.

“Short-term rental for younger people with children is a way for some of us to stay connected to our children and grandchildren in retirement. Short-term rental of our own homes is how we afford to go somewhere else from time to time in retirement. Laws and regulations that prevent a company from doing the same will, as all laws seem to do, negatively impact us little guys more,” Diamantis said.

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