Is Airbnb in Northeast or Southeast DC Worth It?

4 Replies

Hello all,

I’m looking to buy a condo in DC. I travel for work during the week and was thinking of renting the spare room out while I’m gone. With my budget and criteria I have more options in northeast and southeast DC. If anyone has any experience with hosting Airbnb in these areas please highlight your experience thus far. If one of your rentals are in northeast or southeast, is the demand ok for those units? Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

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@Minnie Barnes I have one in the NE. It’s a 4-plex with one unit being Airbnb and the rest are long term tenant. Occupancy is good if priced right. It’s no longer passive but you can double up on rents. So it might be worth it if you have the bandwidth to support. We get mostly families and international visitors. No major issues so far. I would also open up the Airbnb to your current tenants and make sure they are on board. It’s worked out well especially if they have guest but don’t have room to house them. Also I think dc plans to ban Airbnb so you need to be owner occupy if you do want to do it legally. PM if you want more info. Good luck!

@Minnie Barnes short term rentals in DC are going to have the highest demand in the middle of the city, near the museums, monuments, other tourist attractions, and large business offices. If you are looking in more remote parts of the city in NE or SE, a long-term lease via house-hacking is definitely the better strategy in my opinion. Beginning in October, there will be more restrictions on airbnb. Namely, you can only do it for (i believe) up to 90 days each year and it must be your primary residence. The city is likely also going to roll out more regulations on business licenses/permits.

My advice: purchase something in an area of the city you would be happy living in, and where the greatest potential for appreciation exists. You'll find better opportunities for cashflow (and future appreciation 5-10 years out) in neighborhoods like Deanwood, Marshall Heights, and Anacostia, however these neighborhoods are still in transition so I don't think the demand (and income) from AirBnb would be as great as something like DuPont or Logan circle.

If you have any further questions feel free to PM me. I have lived in the DC area my entire life and currently own two properties in the city (one in Northeast DC on other side of anacostia river and one in Northwest quadrant).