By HANNAH SIEVERT
CENTRAL OREGON DAILY NEWS
For four summers, Isaac and Emily O’Casey have made extra money by renting their house on Airbnb.
“People are looking for a home feel, something that’s less hotel, so people come here and enjoy the chickens, the veggie garden we have, the backyard,” Isaac O’Casey said.
Earlier this spring, the homeowners realized this summer will look a little different.
“We had quite a few booked back in March for the summer, and then everything hit and there was a whole bunch of cancelations,” Isaac O’Casey said. “We’ve seen like two more bookings since that time.”
Deschutes County is was cleared for Phase 2 of reopening this weekend, but the O’Casey’s said rental bookings still aren’t filling up very quickly.
Gov. Kate Brown’s plan for reopening the state allows, but still discourages people from traveling throughout the state.
“Typically, we’ll have the whole summer filled out by the middle of June, so it’s definitely slower,” Isaac O’Casey said.
Victoria Smith, president and founder of Alpenglow vacation rentals in Bend, said she saw a similar trend with the 35 vacation rentals she manages.
“As soon as they made an announcement, it was just an onslaught of cancellations,” Smith said. “I have processed over 250 cancellations.”
Although she’s seeing less activity with bookings this summer, she is still getting inquiries.
“I think as we roll into the next phase and see how that’s doing we’ll see more progress,” Smith said.
The O’Casey’s are hoping to see the same thing.
“I think if we continue to be in the clear, people will catch onto that and start booking,” Isaac O’Casey said.