The idea for Thirdhome was born when founder and CEO Wade Shealy, a developer and expert in the luxury real estate business for more than 25 years, noticed many of his clients would buy homes then want to sell them a few years later. Others were hesitant to purchase and vacation in the same place year after year, he says.
So Shealy launched Thirdhome in 2010 with a small collection of houses from second homeowners, giving them value back on their investments. Many of the homes on Thirdhome are exclusive, meaning owners don't offer their homes on other booking sites, like Airbnb.
Opening up Thirdhome to the public could be a lucrative play for Shealy. Revenue in the US vacation rental market continues to rise every year, hitting $18.9 million this year and expected to show an annual growth rate of 6.6 percent, just over $23 million by 2022. Vacation rentals across the world is a $100-billion dollar industry.
And VRMB, an industry vacation rental resource, reports that vacation rentals will topple the hotel industry by 2020. The average number of Airbnb units alone double year upon year, whereas hotel supply increase by 1 percent. Goldman Sachs conducted a survey indicating once people switch to Airbnb, they don't go back to hotels.
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