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Changed Summer Rental Market On Post-Sandy Jersey Shore

SPRING LAKE, N.J. (CBSNewYork) -- It may be winter, but this is the time when many rent their summer vacation homes.

As CBS 2's Alice Gainer reported, those looking to rent at the Jersey Shore will face some challenges post-Superstorm Sandy.

With less than 100 days now until Memorial Day weekend, crews have been busy rebuilding the boardwalk up and down the Jersey Shore – in communities such as Spring Lake and Pleasant Point Beach.

And on Tuesday night, the Point Pleasant Beach City Council repealed an ordinance to allow bars once again to close at 2 a.m. instead of midnight, meaning more money for hard-hit businesses.

But the rental business doesn't seem to need too much help.

"What I do see is more activity a little earlier," said Denise Collaro of D'Amico & McConnell Realtors. "Maybe because people who love the shore are concerned that maybe they won't have quite a selection."

And considering what Superstorm Sandy did to the shoreline, that is a valid concern.

While a lot of homeowners have already made the necessary repairs to be rented, other areas of the Jersey Shore will not be able to.

One realtor said its rentals in Mantoloking were wiped out, and in Long Beach Island, a realtor said it was down 20 percent of the homes it normally rents.

Collaro said that might be the reason why places such as Spring Lake and Sea Girt are seeing an influx.

"We might have an overflow of Mantaloking, Bayhead -- towns that really won't be able to accommodate what they're used to," she said.

In Bayhead, realtors said they are down about 30 to 40 percent of their normal inventory, because some homeowners are opting to stay and help rebuild. They said, though, that some of their homes might not be repaired right now, they will be by the summer.

"Don't be discouraged," said Shawn Clayton of Clayton & Clayton realtors. "You could go between now and the summertime and you might be able to get a better deal."

Realtors also have been telling owners that now is the time to crank up prices.

But the realtors said so far, prices are unchanged for rentals. They said a lot of homeowners have not yet begun repairs, because they are waiting on insurance money.

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