Advice on renting out your Austrian holiday investment property.
Thinking of renting out your property?
Many purchasers try to cover some of their annual costs by renting out their properties. If you do this on a serious basis you will be eligible for income tax on the rental earned depending on where you are domiciled for tax. You will also have to charge your guests the tourist tax and pass it on to the Gemeinde.
In some areas (such as Zell am See) the local authorities are clamping down on the letting out of apartments. Essentially, people have bought apartments in residential blocks and then let them to rowdy tourists. The other permanent residents are not amused and so things are currently under review.
You need to ensure that the property that you buy can legally be rented out if that is your plan.
Most, if not all, holiday apartments in Austria are privately owned and run. There are only a limited number of letting agencies who are able to operate the whole thing for you.
Some of the larger blocks of holiday apartments in some villages have caretakers who will, in fact, be happy to help you service a flat after guests have been and deal with lettings, but they will expect their palms to be greased in the appropriate manner. We know several holiday developments where this works very well. This is probably the most practical approach but you will usually have to set this up yourself.
Own rental property in the Salzkammergut?
If you buy, or have bought in the Salzkammergut region, we can recommend a reliable local business who will handle the lettings for you. Please ask.
How much can you charge?
The best way to get an idea of how much you can charge for your property is to see what others in the area are charging. A good source of information are the regional brochures from the local Tourist Office. These list all the apartments in the area that are available to rent. This will give you a benchmark for what you will be able to charge by way of rental.
How many weeks will you be able to rent out for?
Please do not ask us how many weeks you can let it, as we sell property and don't really rent it, and we are in no position to advise. That said the average occupancy rate is about 22 weeks per year.
Some of our customers have been very successful in renting out their properties. The key to their success is good advertising and following up enquiries as they come in. Many have created websites. The real growth market here is eastern Europe and increasing numbers of visitors now come from Czech Republic, Hungary, Slovenia, Poland, Russia, Slovakia, and Croatia.
You would do well to create a website in those languages, as well as English and German, however much you might wince at the idea!
Need a website but no idea where to start?
At Euroburo we are able to create and host websites.
Our websites are simple and affordable, and they work.
If you would like to know more about setting up a website for your property, please contact us.
What is tourist tax?
All villages raise revenue by imposing a tourist tax. If you buy a property in Austria and are registered as permanently resident then the tax is not payable. If you have a 'holiday' property then you will receive an annual bill for "Tourist Tax". This varies from village to village but is likely to be around 200 Euros per annum.
Hotels, Pensions, Gasthofs and holiday flats all charge tourist tax to all guests and the 70 cents/ 1 Euro (approx) per person per night is included in their tariff and they then pass it on to the Gemeinde on a regular basis. That is the law and you are obliged to do the same. Maybe by charging you a flat rate to you as the owner, knowing that you will let guests use it anyway, they have covered themselves whatever happens. You need to be aware of this though.
Guests dining in the garden