How to Find the Perfect 55+ Rental Home

by Susan Quilty on December 13, 2010

    Many online sources are available to help snowbirds find the perfect winter retreat.

Many online sources are available to help snowbirds find the perfect winter retreat.

Each winter, snowbird retirees flock to warmer climates. There they will bask in the sun and put thoughts of snowstorms and heavy coats out of their minds. But before they can make their seasonal migration, these snowbirds first have to secure a home for the winter.

For snowbirds who do not own a second home, vacation rentals are a common way to spend the winter in a sunny southern locale. Yet, first-time snowbirds and those looking for a rental home in a new area may not know where to find out about extended stay homes, especially if they are hoping to find a rental home within a 55+ community.

Rental homes that are located in 55+ communities are often rented out by their owners, instead of being handled through real estate agents or other institutions. As such, most owners are looking for long-term renters, and would prefer to have the same people stay in their home through the whole season. Renters who like a house may come back to it year after year, but others prefer to try out different locations each year. Fortunately, there are a few resources available online to help snowbirds track down rental homes.

VRBO.com — VRBO (Vacation Rentals By Owner) is designed for anyone who wants to rent a vacation home. You can browse by location and check availability for your travel dates. Although the site does not give you an option to search specifically for 55+ communities, those who are search engine savvy will find that advanced search operators may help narrow the prospects. For example, going to Google.com and typing [ site:vrbo.com “55+ community” ] will bring back listings on vrbo.com which include the phrase “55+ community.”

SnowbirdCondo.com — This rental home website is designed specifically with snowbirds in mind. Featuring rental homes in the southern United States, South America and nearby islands, Snowbird Condo helps renters find several types of homes including condos, villas, townhomes and single-family homes. You can even sort by the number of bedrooms, number of bathrooms, or the property’s pet policy.

SnowbirdHelper.com — As a site created for snowbirds, Snowbird Helper includes a lot of information for winter travelers, including its own listing of rental homes in popular snowbird markets. The main list is arranged by state (or country for international listings) and each rental has its own link to a web ad with more information.

Many snowbirds also find great rental opportunities through word of mouth. By getting to know other snowbirds, you can share your experiences, learn from each other and tap into a great resource for finding future rental recommendations.

{ 64 comments… read them below or add one }

Joan Zuzick October 18, 2011 at 11:56 am

we are looking for rental for 3months. I like the villages, or near myrtle beach, sc, on water view or golf. would like 55+ area with ammenities. Open to suggestions.

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Fred Rawlins April 24, 2012 at 5:51 pm

i am so exasperated. for several months i have been researching home rentals in 55 + communities. it is difficult!! I want to rent a home that is approximately 2,000sf for a year or more. It is my intent to relocate from the Texas area to Maryland. I do want to purchase a home in a retirement community, but i feel it is best that i rent for a year or more until i decide exactly where and within which community i want to reside.

Can you help me with my efforts?

Thanks for any and all help.
Fred Rawlins

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Goldie January 19, 2013 at 10:22 am

@Fred…I share your frustration! The rentals I have found are month to month and cost a lot of $$$…:(

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Jim May 15, 2012 at 5:00 pm

We are looking for 2 homes in a 55 plus community. One for Jan-Feb, 2013 and one for Feb. 2013 (for friends). We have been looking and not finding any help. You would think that communities would like people to come in and try their community which eventually could lead to buying there but it seems there no chance of that.
Any help would be appreciated.

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Salti August 3, 2012 at 10:54 am

I have two town homes in Gulf Shores, AL, that are fully furnished, just across from the beach, covered parking, nice retirement place for the winter, with likewise neighbors. Lots to do, or just relax. email me if interested.

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DandSwelter March 10, 2013 at 5:46 pm

looking for a 1 bedroom apt. or what ever to rent for 5 0r 6 month this winter 2013. We are from Wisconsin and want something furnished. Also a good price If you can help us we would appreciate it. This is our first time at this, Thank you.

Dennis August 18, 2013 at 1:19 pm

Please send information; availability. rates, amenities

Trish beales January 30, 2014 at 3:11 pm

Please send info. Available this March?

Linda A. June 6, 2012 at 1:48 pm

I am considering renting my home in Harrisburg so that I can rent a 55+ home in Delaware or one of the carolinas. I would like to try before I buy! Any suggestions?

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Chris & Sheila July 24, 2012 at 1:03 am

We are looking into rental options in or surrounding the Charlotte NC area while we consider relocating.

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bill March 4, 2013 at 8:40 pm

Looking for a three month rental in Boynton Beach, Delray Beach or Boca Raton, FL. 55+ gated community with clubhouse.

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Anita March 6, 2013 at 10:37 pm

Looking for a long term single family home, condo, or townhouse rental 55+ with an attached garage 2+ bdrms, 1.5+ bthrms, Western Chicago Suburbs. ie., Oak Brook/ Lombard/ Villa Park/ Clarendon Hills/ Oak Park. Beginning June 2013.

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samantha.dahlstrom March 8, 2013 at 10:12 am

Anita, if you contact one of our partner agents in the chicagoland area – Gina Ness or Jacie Goodman – they can help you in your home search.

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KF Mediate March 13, 2013 at 6:11 pm

Professional Female seeks long-term condo/townhouse rental in the Los Angeles area – 55+ Community is fine too – please email or call 310-281-1989 and leave message.
Thank you
thechameleonsco@yahoo.com

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MIKE April 16, 2013 at 4:29 pm

Looking for 3 month rental southern calf. in San Climenta,Laguna Beach area. Condo or small apt. From Jan. to march.Lower price range,furnished. My lives in Alisa Veajo. Would be a great area to escape coldest part of Colo. winter

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Barb April 21, 2013 at 5:04 am

Snowbird looking for affordable pet friendly rental on Fl. Gulf inDestin/Panama City Beach area for three months next winter.

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richard April 25, 2013 at 6:59 pm

My wife and I and our little shih-tzu are looking for a winter rental in florida in a 55+ community. Like others have said we’re having a hard time finding one within our price range of $1000-1200/month. Most of the ones we’ve found are huge and we only need at least one King bed but would like an extra bedroom if possible. Eventually, we want to purchase a place but want to check out different areas to see where we like best. Any info would be appreciated. We’re interested in staying 10/01/13 to 3/31/14. Would consider staying a couple of months in one area then moving to another so we can check all of our options. Thanks so much….Rich, Mary Ann and Sammy

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Ed and Eileen January 4, 2014 at 12:11 pm

Hello, saw your posting and was wondering how it worked out for you as we are in the same search.

Appreciate any advice you can throw our way.

Thanks,
Ed
Columbia, Maryland

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Gwen July 11, 2013 at 12:27 pm

I am interested in renting an apartment, or condo on the Altantic Ocean in the state of Florida for the winter months. I would appreciate any help in finding a nice and safe place.
Thank you

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Gwen July 11, 2013 at 12:31 pm

The information is correct. Thank you again

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Donna July 15, 2013 at 4:36 pm

I was wondering if there are any rentals available at Four Seasons in Hemet. I was there over the weekend and thought I saw a for rent sign on one of the properties but, did not have time to look into it.

Thank you for your time.
Donna

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Linda L March 29, 2014 at 9:32 am

Donna, did you hear back? We are also looking….thanks! We are looking at Murrietta also. Hopefully we will find a home there temporarily until we decide to buy.

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Len July 20, 2013 at 3:25 am

My good wife and I are starting our search for 55+ Active communities…one or 2 bedrooms from 15 Dec, 2015 to 01May,2014….furnished…in Southern California.
Non smokers, no pets….author.

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Bryan & Laurie July 31, 2013 at 5:35 pm

Looking for a long-term (one year lease) apartment, condo, townhouse, or single family home rental (in that order of preference) in nice community offering a pool and fitness room in Delaware. Must have at least 2 bdrms and 2 baths. Beginning September 2013.

We are 65ish married cpl; no pets and don’t smoke. Our home in south FL is being sold end of August.

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Kmouses July 31, 2013 at 9:25 pm

Looking for a warm weather place to rent for a month. Want at least a 2 bedroom 2 bath, no stairs fully furnished. Currently live in Minnesota and want to get away for the winter months. email me only, if you have a home in the New Mexico area or any warm area that is not to costly, retiree’s on a budget

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Barbara September 28, 2013 at 10:47 am

How about posting some mobile home communities which offer rentals?

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Goldie January 31, 2014 at 7:39 pm

Mobile homes or single family. Rentals are in big demand.

Marty and Carolynn Duncan August 16, 2013 at 6:18 pm

We are looking for a rental home in a “55 community” with lots of activities as we love to golf, swim and play cards of all kinds. We have a darling 4 year old shih-Tzu named Kaley Rose who always travels with us. She is, of course, fully trained and loves to be outside in a fenced area. We tend to our rental homes like our own private home. We do not smoke and we love an orderly clean home. We would like a king size bed and twin beds or queen in the guest bedroom. We will be renting for Jan- Mar 31, 2014. Thanks again and looking forward to finding a wonderful cozy home to rent!

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THE DARGAS September 6, 2013 at 8:34 pm

SEARCHING – SEARCHING – SEARCHING FOR A FLORIDA ONE-MONTH RENTAL UNIT (PREFERABLY IN A 55+) FOR EITHER FEBRUARY OR MARCH 2014. FEEL AS THOUGH EVERYTHING IS OVER $2000; AND THAT’S ABOVE OUR BUDGET.
ANYONE HAVE SOME SUGGESTIONS? NORTH PORT – BRADENTON AREA WOULD BE IDEAL. BUT AT THIS POINT, WILL CONSIDER ALL OPTIONS.

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Marsha Fifer January 20, 2014 at 12:40 am

How about Orange Beach Alabama? Beautiful, warm and lovele area for snowbirds!

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Mary Beth Ryan September 22, 2013 at 5:47 pm

My husband and I are looking for a rental property in an over 55 community in Southern Florida. We would like 2 bedrooms and we have a very calm, gentle dog over 45 pounds we want to bring with us. We will care for the home as if it were ours Nd want to stay for theory he of Jan. Feb. and March, 2014. Please contact me as soon as possible.

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Janice and Michael October 10, 2013 at 8:41 am

We are a 55yr old married couple looking for a modest furnished rental property for February 1, 2014 thru February 28, 2014 in Florida anywhere from Kissimmee area and south and west (Tampa, Fort Myers etc). Preferably a 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom with a heated pool close by. In house amenities wanted are cable/sat television (one in livingroom and one in master bedroom) , wifi/ internet, laundry facilities in house or close by. Mobile homes on 55+ parks are fine too. Price range between $1200 and 1800 a month all inclusive. If you have something you think we would be interested in, please email me asap with pictures, prices and contact info.
Thanks!

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Mary Beth Ryan October 16, 2013 at 9:10 pm

My husband and I just retired and want to find a place to rent in a 55+ community in Southern Florida for January, February and March 2014. We have a chocolate lab who is very docile. We want warmth and to play golf among other activities. Please contact me with any offers or suggestions. Thanks.

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Mary Ellen Eddy March 12, 2014 at 4:01 pm

Your post sounds very similar to what I would have posted, right down to the dog. Except he is blond. Wondering if you had any luck finding a place for this year. We have been searching site after site since fall of 2013 for a place for 2015. Any thoughts or suggestions would be helpful. Thanks,

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Barbara October 19, 2013 at 5:21 pm

Still looking for a 3 month rental…..2 bd/2ba…one story with shuttle service and lots of activities.

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Jan8c October 25, 2013 at 3:39 pm

I am looking for a rental in an active adult community in Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, or North Carolina. I would prefer a 6 month rental from November to May or so. I am now in Princeton NJ but will need to move soon as I have sold my home. Please contact me if you wish to rent your home or know of someone who can help.

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pat January 3, 2014 at 4:55 pm

Looking for a 55+ rental for January, February & March 2014 in the St Petersburg, Bradenton area. Heated pool, hot tub and club house would be nice.
1 bedroom and 1 bath, fully furnished.

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Linda January 5, 2014 at 7:22 am

My husband and I live in Florida BUT want to go to South Jerseys Haddonfield area (or close by) for July and August. We are both 60, very clean and there are no pets. Thank you!

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Margaret Wilson January 20, 2014 at 6:58 am

Looking to rent a place for three months in a 55 plus community in Bradenton area for next year 2015. Having trouble finding a place. Couldn’t find a place for this winter. Need help. Thanks Margaret Wilson.

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Helen Yurchak January 22, 2014 at 3:31 pm

Looking for 55+ rental community or 2 bedroom apt. Or home for rent in Middlesex County.

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Jeanette Bronger January 27, 2014 at 7:37 pm

My husband and I are looking for a fully furnished rental, either mobile home, condo, or other, for the months of Jan.1, 2015 through March 31, 2015. We have 2 dogs both under 20 pounds and gentle with people They are house broken. We would like to be within 20-30 miles from Port St. Lucie Florida, since our son and his family live there and it would be nice to be relatively close to them. Perhaps we are looking too early but I wanted to get a good start on it. Can anyone help? Jeanette

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roger Bolduc February 8, 2014 at 2:30 pm

we are looking my wife and i full furnshed,either mobile home 55 plus or condo or others our son live in fort myers arond there would be nice nonsmoker no pets janv.to march inclusively 2015 we appreciate your interest

Roger

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samantha.dahlstrom February 10, 2014 at 12:41 pm

Check out vrbo.com and airbnb.com. These two websites have short-term rentals available all over the country!

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roger bolduc February 11, 2014 at 7:22 pm

tank-you

barbara February 10, 2014 at 1:00 am

my husband and I are looking for a rental in an over 55 place for summer 2105 in northern California. We have a retirement budget any help is greatly appreciated
Roan and Barb

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Goldie February 15, 2014 at 6:40 pm

You mean 2015…correct?

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barbara February 10, 2014 at 12:38 pm

please help us in finding a summer rental in over 55 place in northern CA thank you

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Kay Wakaruk February 14, 2014 at 11:43 am

Hi We are looking to rent a condo , townhouse in a gated community over 55 with a clubhouse so we can meet other seniors for activities like cards, potlucks, entertainment etc.

We are looking for a place near Phoenix! We would like to rent for Jan and Feb 2015! We are new at this and would like some help to find a great price and at an affordable price!

Thank you kindly Kay and Alec

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Joe Nelson February 19, 2014 at 1:40 pm

Looking for winter rental Jan thru Mar 2015 55 plus area Man wife in 70s
Florida Gulf shores

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Jacpa February 22, 2014 at 11:10 am

We are looking for a 2 bedroom rental condo with activities in over 55 community with pool and on ocean, no smoking, no pets, in Vero Beach, from 1/1/15 – 4/30/15.

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Lynne Sirner March 3, 2014 at 8:31 pm

We are looking for a 1 bedroom condo (1 or 2 baths) to rent for the month of January 2015. We are over 55 and need to escape from the cold in Chicago. Our first choice would be Delray Beach, Boynton Beach, Boca or any place nearby where the sun shines and the water is beautiful. Please help us locate a place to rent for January, 2015.
Thanks so much.

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Susan Stott March 5, 2014 at 3:45 pm

Looking for a 1 or 2 bedroom rental in Davenport , Orlanda FL area for 2015

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Goldie March 7, 2014 at 4:19 pm

Anyone familiar with Ormond Beach, Florida?

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Carrie March 8, 2014 at 7:30 pm

I’m looking for a rental home approximately $1700 a month 1000 square ft for my mom in Ventura county. Pet friendly. Any suggestions?

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Mary Ellen Eddy March 12, 2014 at 4:07 pm

We are looking for a vacation rental home in Florida/gulf coast for Jan/Feb of 2015. My husband & I have just retired. We have a very docile/friendly blond lab that we would like to have with us. We enjoy golfing when we aren’t relaxing with a book or taking Colby for a walk. 1 bdrm, fully furnished house/townhome is desired. Close to amenities. Reasonable rates for retirees. A home we will treat as our own.

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Linda March 18, 2014 at 1:54 pm

W e want a rental for 3 months Jan,Feb,March 2015 anywhere from Boynton Beach to Pampano Beach. Looking for a condo with pool and club house. We have 1 dog that is 38 lbs. Beagle/Bassett.

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Linda March 18, 2014 at 1:57 pm

We want to rent from Jan, Feb, March 2015.Anywhere from Boynton beach to Pampano Beach Florida. A condo with pool and club house. We have one dog, Beagle/Bassett 38 lbs.

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Linda March 18, 2014 at 6:35 pm

Looking for a Snowbird rental near Boynton, FL. 1 bedroom ok, have 1 cat. Nov-Mar or Dec-Mar. Must be fully furnished, non smoker. Dates open. Over 55 community where there are a lot of younger seniors in the 55-65 age range. Thanks

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Art March 20, 2014 at 5:43 pm

Looking for 2 month rental, Jan.-Feb., 2015, 2 beds, 2 baths, 2 adults, 0 children.
Adult community, Sun City Anthem At Merrill Ranch, Florence, Az.

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Art March 20, 2014 at 5:48 pm

Looking for 2 month rental, Jan.-Feb., 2015, 2 beds, 2 baths, 2 adults, 0 children.
Adult community, Del Webb’s Sun City Anthem At Merrill Ranch, Florence, Az.

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Jean March 29, 2014 at 8:56 pm

I am frustrated! My husband and I have been retired for a while and have traveled quite a bit. We have rented for 2 and 3 months in the winter and are finding it so much more difficult now. We need a nice 1 or 2 bedroom, 1 or 2 bath unit, on the ground floor, kitchen, living room, possibly porch, deck or lanai. We travel with our adopted white samoyed dog, who is very friendly, clean and well behaved. Looking for availability January, February & March of 2015. We are interested in either Gulf Shores area of Alabama, or possibly Green Valley, Arizona for a change of pace. Hope someone can help us out!!

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Debra April 10, 2014 at 6:59 pm

Looking for mobile park rental in 55 plus community for Jan/Feb/Mar/ 2015 in Florida, Gulf coast preferrably near st petersburg. first time renters, newly retired and looking for a great friendly place to be for the upcoming winter……thank you

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Dan April 10, 2014 at 8:29 pm

Help for Snow-birds!!!!! (Bradenton, Florida)
I am looking into purchasing an investment property in Bradenton, Florida.
2 bedroom 2 bath mobile home in 55+ no pet community . Completely furnished and remodeled. Ten minutes to the beach. I am looking for snowbirds who want to rent September thru December 2014. Renting Jan thru April seems to be no problem….If I can lineup 6-8 months of rentals I will purchase this property.
$ 1700 month Jan thru April. $ 1500 month Sep thru Dec + Taxes and Security deposit. Background check also required. Email me if you have any interest.

Dan

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Pat April 11, 2014 at 3:56 pm

Newly retied couple (non-smoke/no pets) looking to get away from the Minn winter for Jan-Mar/Apr 2015. We love the AZ area and are hoping to find a 2bd/2ba snowbird rental there. If anyone has availability, please contact us.
Thanks so much and have a great day!

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