Best Areas in Northern CA for Multi-Families and Vacation Rentals

5 Replies

I'm going to be exploring northern California over the next few weeks with an eye toward finding a small multi-family buy and hold. My idea would be to use at least one of the apartments as a vacation rental. What do I need to look out for with short term/vacation rental regulations in CA? I had been thinking I would look in the Sacramento area, but I'm open to other suggestions. Where would I be most likely to find a cash flowing property that would also have a good vacation or short-term rental market? I'd like it to be in a somewhat urban area as I live in very rural New England and would want to use the rental myself on occasion for a change of scene!

Hi @Wendy Forbes ,

In Sacramento, I don't think vacation rental is necessarily your best bet. You rarely hear someone say "hey let's go on vacation in Sacramento!" Because it is the state capital and experiencing private sector growth as well, however, you might have some luck using it as a medium term furnished rental that targets white collar professionals. Maybe they are in town for a conference. Maybe they are in town for three months to secure some government contract. Maybe there is a six month consultancy regarding the merger of two companies. That sort of thing.

Good news for you is these medium term white collar professionals are less likely to trash the place, compared to if you did market the unit as a vacation rental.

Hey @Wendy Forbes

I'm a local real estate agent in Sacramento. For a short term or executive/corporate rental I would highly recommend buying in the downtown Sacramento area. Downtown is the most "urban" part of town and is where most everything is located like the state capital/ government jobs and nightlife etc. 

It may be difficult to cash flow there however because property values are higher... what is your model? Criteria? 

Feel free to send me a message and perhaps I can help you on your search.

@Wendy Forbes

Tahoe comes to mind first thing for me for a vacation rental. You will need to do your own research to see if there is any cashflow. South Lake Tahoe, Tahoe City, even Truckee would be really great for vacation rentals. There are some nice towns closer to Sacramento that might offer some more reasonable prices, possibly cashflow and some vacation potential. I really like Auburn, beautiful town and area on hwy 80 in the foothills of the Sierra Mountains. They say "above the fog and below the snow".  

There are lots of really nice mountain towns up and down the Sierra. 

Thanks to all of you. This is very helpful information. I'll let you know if I find something!

For vacation rentals ,  I would look at Tahoe and cities by the coast like Carmel.  

For short term rentals,  I'd look into areas near major hospitals.  I work at one and always hear about medical students/temp.nurses needing housing.  

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