Seasonal Rentals March 29, 2023

Everything You Need to Know About Seasonal Rentals

Seasonal Rentals Delray Beach Fl 

A seasonal rental, means any rental unit, including hotels, motels, cabins, condominiums, single-family homes, duplexes or multifamily dwellings which are rented or available to be rented during the period usually starting Sept/Oct 1st, for a term of 1-6months, usually expiring March/April 1st. Season rentals can be booked through companies like Airbnb, VRBO, but most are listed on the MLS through a local Real Estate Agent because of their HOA rules.


Fill out the Contact form if you want a comprehensive list of what’s available on the MLS sent directly to you.


What fees can I expect to pay?

It can be very confusing to determine the total cost of your seasonal rental, even for seasoned Snowbirds, so I broke down the most common costs below.

STATE TAX: In Florida, counties charge additional taxes on top of the monthly advertised rental rates for any rentals equal to or less than a 6-month term.

HOA FEES & DEPOSITS: Many properties in Florida are governed by an HOA. You will be required to give a Damage Deposit to the HOA, usually in the amount of $1000. HOA also require a Background Check/Credit Check. They charge anywhere from $100 per adult – $350 per couple or more.

*Note: the application process starts AFTER you sign a lease, and pay all costs upfront. It can take 30 days for approval. Your money is held in Escrow until the HOA signs off, then distributed to the appropriate parties.

PET DEPOSITS: Like a regular lease, you can expect deposits and fees for Pets both to the Landlord & HOA. The amount varies widely.

CLEANING FEE: After you move out, the owner sometime charges a fee to clean the unit.

UTILITY DEPOSIT: Since seasonal renters will only be at the property for a short time, the owners  will leave the utilities (water, cable, electric) in their name. Renter’s are charged a refundable utility deposit. After they move out the owner will provide copies of the bills, deduct the expenses and return the balance to the owner.



That’s a lot of fees, how is this calculated?

Below is an example in Palm Beach County where the taxes are 13% of the total coast of the lease. It is calculated like this:


You rent a house for $5000 per/mo, 3-month term + 13% Tax to County + $250 Application fee to HOA + $5000 (Refundable) Security Deposit to the Owner + $1000 (Refundable) Damage Deposit to the HOA + $399 Realtor Fee + $500 (Refundable) Pet Deposit + $150 Cleaning Fee.



x 3 (term)

= $15,000 (total lease term cost)


x 13% (tax) 

= $1,950 (total taxes owed)


+ $1,950
+ $250 (Application Fee to HOA)
+ $399 (Realtor Fee)
+ $150 (Cleaning Fee)


+ $5000 (Security Deposit to the Owner)
+ $1000 (Damage Deposit to the HOA)
+ $500   (Pet Deposit)
+$1000 (Utility Deposit)



When should I begin looking for a seasonal rental?

As the current season draws to a close guests are renewing leases for the following luxury seasonal rental season. For the rest of us, home owners traditionally list the majority of their luxury rentals beginning in May, and it really heats up by June/July. The Pandemic of 2019/2020 has squeezed the rental market inventory, as people have snatched up available properties for a yearly rental while they look for a house. I recommend the you contact a luxury real estate agent to discuss your criteria. They can walk you through the process, and alert you as soon as something hits the market. Like anything, the early Snowbird gets the worm.

Fill out the Contact form if you want a comprehensive list of what’s available on the MLS sent directly to you.