Beginning Your Vacation Rental Portfolio

Vacation Rental Properties are today what timeshares were in the 90s, except by investing in them you are actually building wealth instead of letting someone else build their own.

If you want to benefit from the many advantages of owning a vacation rental, it is important to consider 3 important things. 

Location

When you choose to purchase a vacation rental it is important to consider where you are purchasing and if it is a desirable area. Ask yourself what would draw individuals to this area?

Another consideration are local laws and regulations. Some cities and towns do not allow for short term rentals, while others are more vacation rental friendly.

According to AirDNA the average annual revenue potential is located  in small cities or rural areas. What draws people to these cities? Usually these areas are connected to more touristy areas.

Take Slidell, LA, it is located 40 minutes outside the New Orleans French Quarter and has a 62% occupancy with an annual revenue of $69K.

When you begin to assess a location for its appeal of visiting versus living, you will begin to recognize the best places to investigate as potential investment opportunities.

Other locations that you should consider beyond coastal towns are mountain and lake towns.

Seasonality

An important aspect of any short-term rental is the number of days you will be able to rent it. If you are being realistic, most areas do not have 100% occupancy and are lucky to have 80%.

In fact, the average time that vacation rentals are occupied is a total of 12 weeks throughout the peak season.

When you are investigating potential vacation rental properties evaluate the ability to prolong that season, and make it appealing throughout the year to visit. 

A way to enhance the appeal of your property if it is primarily a summer rental location is to highlight the charm of the nearby town during the fall and winter months as well.

What quaint community events and attractions do they boast? You have to market for each of the seasons to help increase the appeal of your rental. 

Furnishings

Different from your typical rental property, a short term rental has to be furnished and also include many basic living accommodations.

Since people like to feel the comfort of home with a little bit of the lux treatment, it is recommended that you hire an interior decorator to help you with this task.

The furnishings should be durable and beautiful. In fact, most people expect furnishing for your short-term rental to cost you between $30k-$50k. 

Apart from the basic furnishing you will also need bedding that can withstand the many items of washing after having guests. You will also need a fully equipped kitchen.

If your property is located near the beach, provide beach towels separate from bath towels, and even consider some beach toys and chairs to make their stay more comfortable. 

Another important aspect to consider about your rental is the importance of an added local and personal touch, remember your rental is ultimately a reflection of a beautiful vacation, and you are the host, not the landlord.

Ultimately you should investigate potential property management companies to help run and operate your property efficiently. This is especially helpful if you do not live close to your property. 

Conclusion

There are many advantages and disadvantages of owning a short-term/vacation rental. It is important to investigate the earning potential of each location and market to ascertain if it is right for you.

These properties are very different from the care and management of long-term rental properties, but can also be just as lucrative.

Remember, if you choose to make the investment, you are helping to make many memories, not only for you but hundreds, if not thousands of other people as well. 

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