News & Media
Couple stands on balcony overlooking the ocean
Sportstock, Getty Images

Fla.’s Vacation Home Rentals Contribute $27.4B to Economy

Direct vacation-rental spending was almost 20% of Fla.’s tourism industry in 2017 and 1.6% of state GDP. In 2018, more than one in 10 (11.2%) tourists stayed in a vacation-rental home. Industry direct spending supports 115K jobs and creates 13 jobs every hour.

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – A new report commissioned by Florida Realtors® shows the economic impact of Florida’s vacation rental industry exceeds $27 billion.

“Floridians have long-known that the state’s vacation rental industry has a significant impact on our economy, but the numbers in this report are simply staggering,” says Florida Realtors president Barry Grooms, a Realtor and co-owner of Sarabay Suncoast Realty Inc. in Bradenton. “More than $27 billion a year is a substantial contribution to our economy, and the 115,000 jobs it supports are critical to the well-being of many of our communities.”

The report focuses on 25 Florida counties: Bay, Brevard, Broward, Charlotte, Collier, Duval, Escambia, Flagler, Franklin, Gulf, Hillsborough, Lee, Manatee, Miami-Dade, Monroe, Nassau, Okaloosa, Orange, Osceola, Palm Beach, Pinellas, Santa Rosa, Sarasota, Volusia and Walton.

When combined, the 25 counties include 89.3% of the total registered vacation rental homes in the state of Florida.

Key findings

  • The 2018 economic impact of Florida’s vacation rental industry represents $16.6 billion in direct spending and $10.8 billion in indirect spending, totaling $27.4 billion.
  • The direct spending represents 18.7% of the total direct spending of the Florida tourism industry in 2017 and 1.6% of Florida’s total gross domestic product in 2018.
  • The direct spending amounts to nearly $46 million a day and approximately $1.9 million every hour reverberating through the state’s economy.
  • The direct spending supports roughly 115,000 jobs with one job created for every $144,181 spent.
  • Overall, the industry generates 312 jobs statewide every day, 13 jobs every hour and one job every 5 minutes.
  • In 2018, the total amount of tourists staying in vacation rental homes in Florida was 14,233,274 – 11.2% of the total 127 million tourists that came to Florida in 2018.

Grooms adds, “Given the vital importance of vacation rentals to our economy, I truly hope policymakers and stakeholders consider this information as they deliberate on measures that could impact the industry.”

The report was conducted by the University of Central Florida’s Rosen College of Hospitality Management. The data and conclusions provided in the report were generated from data received from the three primary stakeholders involved in the vacation rental home sector: homeowners, management companies and tourists/visitors.

In total, 6,240 tourists, 1,748 vacation rental homeowners and 143 vacation rental home management companies were surveyed. That survey data was then triangulated with data from Key Data, the Survey Center of the Bureau of Economic and Business Center, AirBnB, the Florida Tourist Development Tax Association Inc. (FTDTA), multiple county tax collectors’ offices, and the Florida Department of Revenue.

For a copy of the full report, visit UCF’s website.

© 2020 Florida Realtors®