Strange-But-True: Do GOP Conventioners Want To Rent Your House?

Earlier this week, the Minneapolis Area Association of Realtors announced that GOP Convention Strategies had contacted them to help place clients in homes near the Xcel Energy Center for the duration of the 2008 Republican National Convention. Though some earlier articles seemed to indicate that the idea was a bunch of hype spawned by hopeful craigslist ads, this announcement by MAAR lends credibility to the story. The convention has already locked up hotel rooms in St. Paul and the surrounding cities. Convention-goers aren’t going to want to commute through Twin City traffic in order to attend the event.

Some clients of GOP Convention Strategies heading to the Twin Cities for the RNC have expressed interest in staying in private homes, town homes, or condos. They don’t want to stay just anywhere, though. In particular, they are interested in homes at places such as downtown St. Paul, the Cathedral Hill area, and downtown Minneapolis. The convention runs from August 30 through September 5, 2008.

A simple search on craigslist in Minneapolis/St. Paul does reveal several ads from people wishing to rent their homes to dignitaries, delegates, members of the press, CEOs, executives, and others who will attend the convention in September. They range in price from a couple thousand dollars to tens of thousands dollars for various durations around and throughout the event. Googling the right words results in many, many more homes for rent.

The people attending the RNC are most likely not interested in staying at just any home. Many do not travel alone, so they will be seeking homes with multiple rooms. They also probably aren’t going to find a home to rent through Google or craiglist. Think about it. Would you?

If you own a place in St. Paul or downtown Minneapolis that you think might make the cut and you’re willing to rent that place out to strangers, this may be an option you may wish to pursue. This isn’t going to be everyone’s cup of tea, however. If you are considering it, the fact that a private company is offering to make arrangements, deposits, and payments is at least one positive thing going for it.

It’s not going to make you rich to rent out your home to an RNC attendee. It may give the owner of a property some extra cash but there is obviously risk involved. It is allowing strangers into your home for a relatively long time.

As Benjamin Franklin once said, “Fish and houseguests smell after three days.”

Post a Comment