Owning vs Renting a Vacation Rental

8 Replies

Hi all. I’m really interested in starting an airbnb in San Antonio (an area that I like to visit for fun and is not too far from where I live in Houston). I will stay in the property every couple of months for a weekend or so but then would rent it out on airbnb when I’m not at the property. I’ve been going back and forth between whether I want to wait until I have the funds to purchase a property for this purpose vs obtaining a lease and subletting that property when I am not in town (with landlord permission of course). Interested in your thoughts

If you get someone to sublet to you and then you build a successful VRBO or Airbnb what's to stop the owner from raising your rates at lease renewal or not renewing your lease and doing the same thing your doing?

Originally posted by @John Underwood :

If you get someone to sublet to you and then you build a successful VRBO or Airbnb what's to stop the owner from raising your rates at lease renewal or not renewing your lease and doing the same thing your doing?

That's part of why I am going back and forth. Hopefully a year from now the funds will be in place for me to purchase a SFH

Everyone is different, but I rest easier knowing everything is in place before I move forward. I'd wait until you have the money set so that you don't have extra moving parts. Delayed gratification isn't fun, but it's smart.

Well.. when I wanted to start an Airbnb in January 2017 I didn’t have enough for a down payment on a house in a Boston. I started with renting one apartment in Boston and then Airbnb’ing it. Fast forward to now, I have 9 Airbnb rentals and I had enough money to put down on a 2 family in May of this year (not Airbnb). Airbnb has been extremely profitable for me and the landlords all know I airbnb the apartments. They raised it $100 each apartment after the year lease was up. It didn’t effect me at all, but I’m in Boston where the Airbnb business is extremely profitable. The issue is, if I bought in Boston, and then decided to Airbnb, I wouldn’t be able to do that come August 2019 because of the new laws. So honestly, it all depends. I’m extremely happy with the path I chose.

Just curious how you go about having the discussion with the landlords about using it for air bnb? Every lease I have ever seen has a clause that prohibits subleasing, and it seems like that is a situation whwere the landlord would be at risk, so how do you get them to agree to that?

I'm an Airbnb host, I have 4 that I own, rehabbing 3 more than will be airbnbs as well, after that I don't plan to buy more, just rent and make it an Airbnb, when you talk to the owner you have to explain the benefits of letting you do Airbnb (house continually kept up and clean, great airbnb reviews with solid house rules, I plan to offer to fix any minor issues so he's totally hands off unless it's a big issue with the house).

@Carla Gordon I do rental arbitrage but I base it up on the market I'm in. If I'm in a buyers market I'm going to hold my money to buy but if I'm in a sellers market I would go forth with the rental arbitrage. Be sure to save your funds from arbitraging and buy property when your market is a buyer's market. I'm a few hours from San Antonio and I'm not familiar with the market there but I know Dallas is a sellers market so it's a great place to arbitrage.