Top 6 Tips for Buying Your First Rental Property

Reveal your property’s rental profitability

Buy this property and list it on Airbnb.

1. 🤔 Evaluate the location and comparable listings

The location of your property is critical for attracting guests and ensuring long term success of your Airbnb business. Proximity to a high GDP urban area or locations with a big tourism industry are safe bets. The closest answer to “how much can this property make?” is in real comparable listings that are already on the market. Averaging these out can give you a good idea of how much you can charge as a nightly rate, and what percentage of the time your property will be occupied.

2. 🏖️ Understand short term rental property value

Airbnb guests have different requirements than long term tenants. When people are on vacation, they’re looking for novelty and entertainment so they can get out of their normal routine and have fun. Look for a property with at least a few of these: pool, hot tub, games, beach, tourist destinations, views, and novel architecture. If a property you find doesnt have most of those, consider factoring it into a renovation budget. It will add costs, but significantly enhance the appeal of your listing and justify higher nightly rates.

3. 👨‍💻 Calculate the profitability

If positive cash flow is essential for the viability of your rental property, ensure that your rental income exceeds your monthly expenses, providing you with a steady income stream and financial buffer. Factor in costs like property management, maintenance, utilities, furniture, repairs, taxes, renovations, and insurance to get a realistic picture of your ongoing expenses.

Remember to factor in the standard amenities that every Airbnb should have: Free fast Wi-Fi, kitchen, parking, bedding, heating and cooling, washer and dryer, workspace, furniture and decor. If your listing is missing any of these, that will have to be factored into the initial investment budget.

4. 🏦 Get your finances in order and choose a mortgage

Unless you’re buying in cash, you’ll need to meet a few criteria to get a mortgage. Good credit score, stable income, down payment, debt-to-income ratio, and proof of assets. The type of mortgage you choose can affect your long-term profitability. Consider factors such as fixed vs. adjustable rates, loan terms, and repayment flexibility to ensure your mortgage aligns with your investment strategy. Consult with a financial advisor or use online mortgage calculators to understand your options better.

5. 🚧 Know legal obligations

Understanding your legal obligations as an Airbnb host is crucial to avoid costly legal issues. Familiarize yourself with local short term rental laws and regulations, and property codes to ensure compliance. Obtain necessary permits and consider liability insurance to protect yourself from potential legal disputes. Common issues include zoning laws, occupancy limits, and tax obligations.

6. 📑 Prepare to be a host / landlord

Being a host involves more than just collecting rental income. Be prepared to handle tenant issues, property maintenance, and administrative tasks. If you want less involvement and can afford it, consider hiring a property management company to assist you. Effective guest communication, handling reviews professionally, and maintaining a routine maintenance schedule are key to successful hosting. Property management companies can handle these aspects, providing you with more free time and peace of mind.

Reveal your property’s rental profitability

Buy this property and list it on Airbnb.