$3,900 a Night: DC’s Inauguration Rental Insanity Begins

by Nena Perry-Brown

A DC listing asking $1,200 a night for inauguration.

Every four years, the presidential inauguration brings a wave of visitors into DC for the three- to four-day weekend surrounding the swearing-in ceremony. And every four years, DC residents attempt to cash in on this demand by renting their homes out for exorbitant sums.

The country’s new president will not be chosen for three weeks, but a handful of DC rental options have popped up on Craigslist specifically targeting inauguration visitors, with rental rates upwards of $3,900 per night for a three-bedroom plus-den house on Capitol Hill.The two-story corner unit near Eastern Market can accommodate up to eight guests and has three parking spaces. The nightly rental rate during inauguration is only slightly less than what a house like this would rent for on a monthly basis on Capitol Hill.

The owner of a three-bedroom home near North Capitol Street and Q Street asking $1,200 a night informed UrbanTurf that their price point is based on hotel rates for the same timeframe while adjusting upward for the extra bedrooms. They haven’t received any interest yet, but there are still a lot of options available and prospective renters are undoubtedly waiting to see if their candidate wins the race.

This Capitol Hill home is asking $3,900 a night for inauguration weekend.

Most Airbnb hosts haven’t adjusted their rates yet, but a quick search showed a few listings going for anywhere from double to more than 15 times their typical rates. While Airbnb listings for two guests in DC usually rent for an average of $162 per night, the average listing price for January 19th-23rd is already up to $488 a night. Other outlets have also noticed an uptick in listing prices for the inauguration weekend; Airbnb representative Crystal Davis sent UrbanTurf a statement which read, in part, “we project there to be 4x as many guest arrivals in Washington, D.C. during the week of the inauguration compared to the week before”.

A quick glance at hotels via Expedia show that 95 percent of hotel listings are already booked for inauguration weekend, with the remaining options at least four times more expensive than usual. Hotel rooms for two are currently going for $499-$2,160 per night for the weekend starting January 19th.

While plenty of city residents will likely be successful in renting out their rooms, apartments or houses at reasonable rates, those that shoot for the stars likely won’t, if 2008 was any indication. For Obama’s first inauguration, UrbanTurf spoke with a number of DC residents who were hoping to rent out their homes for rates ranging from $1,000 a night to $15,000 for the week. Only one person out of five was successful, a lobbyist who rented his one-bedroom on Massachusetts Avenue and 10th Street NW to a business associate for three nights at $1,000 a night.

UrbanTurf will continue to follow the proliferation of inauguration rentals that hit the market after our new president is chosen on November 8th.

See other articles related to: inauguration rentals, inauguration, hotels, craigslist, airbnb

This article originally published at https://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/inauguration_insanity_begins/11807

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