The owners of the Oakwood Inn Bed and Breakfast in Raleigh announced plans to close their business this June.
In a letter to neighbors and friends, owner Doris Jurkiewicz said the “impact of AirBnBs
” and the city’s “slow approach to handling any regulations” are the reasons for their decision to close the last traditional bed and breakfast business in Raleigh. Jurkiewicz said she and her husband have been unable to get the mortgage on the house at 411 N. Bloodworth refinanced, or to take out a commercial loan; they will remain in the house as residents.
In January, Jurkiewicz told the INDY she estimates that she’s lost 35 to 40 percent of her business over the last few years; rooms at the Oakwood Inn go for $139-$189 a night. An AirBnB room in Raleigh can go for as little as $40 a night.
Jurkiewicz and her husband have run the Oakwood Inn since September of 2001 (though the inn has been owned and run by various people for more than thirty years.) They have explored selling the business in the past however; in a May 2013 email to neighbors and friends, Jurkiewicz announced that she had decided to sell. Negotiations with a buyer apparently fell through.
“This was an extremely difficult decision to make, especially for me since this has been my job, my passion, my way of life for the past 14 years,” Jurkiewicz wrote. “The increase in unregulated, unfair competition has taken a toll on the Bed and Breakfast industry not only in Raleigh but throughout the country.”
There are more than 400 residences listed for rent in the Triangle area on the AirBnB website. AirBnB and other short-term online rental services are currently being evaluated
in the city’s Law and Public Safety Committee.