If you’re looking to invest, data shows that mountain and beach towns are performing best. Demand growth is particularly strong in the following locations:
- Gatlinburg/Pigeon Forge, Tennessee
- Gulf Shores/Mobile, Alabama
- Myrtle Beach and Hilton Head, South Carolina
- Santa Rosa/Rosemary Beach, Florida
- Panama City, Florida
In Gatlinburg, demand was actually up 69% in April, and Hilton Head is already 80% occupied for June.
The only areas not seeing short-term rental demand grow are the large, urban ones. In New York and Boston, for example, demand is down 74% compared to 2019’s numbers. Washington, D.C., has also seen a steep drop since the pandemic.
The bottom line
As Jamie Lane, VP of research at AirDNA, put it, “The search for new hosts is heating up.” If you’re looking to seize on the growing demand for short-term rentals, make sure to choose your market carefully, and stay in tune with STR travel trends. Post-pandemic travel looks a bit different than it has in years past, so you’ll want to be sure your property falls in line.
Finally, be ready to put some time and money in. It’s a hot market out there, and unless you’re willing to make a cash offer, expect some serious competition when buying a new property -- especially one in a vacation town.