The Whistler property market can be a complicated arena. Many properties are located in neighbourhoods or buildings that prevent such things as being able to rent the property to visitors on a nightly basis. And some of the properties offered for sale may, at first glance, sound like extraordinarily good value and “underpriced” – that might be because you are looking at an “employee restricted property”. Then there are the hotel condominiums, where you can actually only occupy the property up to a maximum of 56 days a year!
Following is a guide to some of the terms you will encounter as search the Whistler market. To be absolutely sure about any restrictions that might be in place, specific to a particular Whistler property, please contact me directly for clarification.
Phase One Covenant -
Properties with this designation offer owners the most flexibility on how they can use it. Owners have unlimited personal use and they are under no obligation to make the property available for nightly or long-term rental. The option to rent is entirely the owner’s and any rental management company or rent-by-owner rental method (AirBnB as an example) can be utilized.
Phase One properties are primarily located in Whistler Village and on the lower slopes of Blackcomb Mountain.
Phase Two Covenant -
Properties with this designation are often referred to as “hotel condominiums”. Examples would be the Four Seasons, Westin and Pan Pacific hotels. Owners are restricted to using their hotel condominium to a maximum of 56 days a year – 28 days in the winter and 28 days in the summer. Any days that the owner is not occupying are available to the hotel to be rented to guests. Owners share with the hotel the revenues generated by the hotel.
In short, this is a “hassle free” way to enjoy some time each year in Whistler in your own fully owned condominium, while having confidence that the property will be maintained and managed to a very high standard when you are not in Whistler. In tandem, there is an opportunity to generate share some strong rental revenues.
Residential Zoning -
Properties with this designation are primarily single family homes. As the name suggests, if your property is designated “residential”, it cannot be used for commercial activities, which includes nightly or short-term rentals. However, renting on a long-term basis, such as monthly or annually, is permitted.
These Residential properties are of course predominantly within the various Whistler neighbourhoods, such as Brio, Alpine Meadows, Bayshores and Emerald Estates.
Employee Restricted -
Throughout Whistler you will find properties designated as “employee restricted”. This generally means there may be restrictions around who can own the property, who can rent the property, the rental amount that can be charged and the price the property can actually be sold for.
Obviously a particular designation has a great effect on the property’s actual value and may prevent an owner from actually living in the property!