Rentals, rentals everywhere and not a tenant to be found

John Devitt

Rentals, rentals everywhere and not a tenant to be found.

Welcome to spring time in Revelstoke.  Potholes are being filled with snowmelt, the buds are blooming on the trees and so are the vacancy listings at any number of properties throughout Revelstoke.  This is the time of year when the transitory labourers move on, and the town is left with an abundance of empty rooms.

This sort of thing is endemic to all ski resort communities.  Rentals go up in the winter as people from all over the world flock to the resort to experience epic snow and legendary times.  Then, once said resort closes up shop for another winter, the community is faced with a mass exodus as the dreaded shoulder season hits.  Just as the snow dries up, so do the jobs, and it can be a struggle for both renter and “rentee.”

Checking out the Stoke List over the past 2 weeks, one can easily see this.  Dozens of advertisements are popping up, both from individuals and private companies, all boasting plenty of great rooms at great prices.  One interesting thing about these ads is the dates at which these properties come available.  One would think they would be mainly for the first of a month, however some are advertising April 12th (or thereabouts) availabilities.  This struck me as odd, until I realized that the closing date for the Revelstoke Mountain Resort had recently been moved up to April 8th.  Are some of these new rentals simply winter vacation properties that are looking for permanent summer tenants, at least until mid November when they will be moved out for the more lucrative vacationers?  While this may be true, some of these ads clearly state “Hey we’re not working anymore and breaking our lease by leaving early.  Want to move in and help us out?”  Let the mass exodus begin!

Well, let me be the first to invite some of you to stick around this summer.  If I didn’t invite you then you know why, but don’t worry.  By tomorrow morning, someone will start a new rumour about someone else and yours will soon be forgotten in 12-16 months.  Don’t let the vocal minority of those saying “Good riddance!  Gitch yerself outta hurr!” scare you off.  Summertime is one of the best times to be in Revelstoke.  The weather is great, there are even more events going on if you can believe that, and most of those are outdoors!  The recreation opportunities increase with climbing, biking, boating, dirt biking, fishing and more all within 5 minutes of town.  People seem to be out and about on the streets more, smiling more often and enjoying the sunshine.  Let’s face it; summer is when a ton of good stuff happens.

Those who stick around after the snow melts are always rewarded by really experiencing Revelstoke.  Many people I have spoken to talk about how they came for a winter and fell in love with the place so they stayed for the summer as well.  They met more people in Revelstoke, and learned to truly love the community and all we have to offer.  It might be surprising to learn that there is more than just epic snow in Revelstoke.  One perk about sticking around for the summer is finding a sweet place to live for the winter at “summer rent” prices and making the connections for a great long-term job.  Everyone dreams of living here in a mountain paradise, so why not make it a reality instead of just being a tourist here for 5 or 6 months?

Six quick steps to becoming a summer resident of Revelstoke:

  1. Get yourself a townie/cruiser bike or a long board for summer travel.
  2. Find out the City bylaws about backyard burning so you don’t get screwed when hosting a summer bonfire.
  3. Join the baseball, soccer or rugby league.
  4. Post the Arts Council’s Summer Street Fest schedule to your refrigerator so you know all the free bands playing in Grizzly Plaza.
  5. Participate in weekly Pedal and Pint nights
  6. Buy seeds to plant a vegetable garden.

Bonus points to becoming a summer resident of Revelstoke:

  • Carry baggies to hand out to the new spring/summer dog owners who forget to clean up after their fresh pups.
  • Get new sunglasses to sport on the patios while drinking Mt. Begbie brews.
  • Get a fishing pole for use everywhere.
  • Buy a park pass or make a friend to share with.
  • Prepare your liver for the many beer gardens that sprout with any given event in town.