Big Bear Vacation Rental

62 Replies

I just got back from Big Bear and I noticed that there were realty businesses all over the place and a ton of inventory for sale. Does anyone on here do vacation rentals in Big Bear? Do they cashflow? What are the appreciation prospects? Should I be concerned that it seems that there is an excess of inventory or should I see that as an opportunity?

I am investor located in Los Angeles.  Currently, I invest in out of state buy and hold rental properties.  I have been intrigued by the vacation rental idea for some time now and was wondering if I could get some responses and talk to some people on this.  Would love to connect with vacation rental property managers and investors in Big Bear.

Yep, Big Bear is all I do- now managing 3 properties (I own one looking to buy another) They each over 200 nights a year. I emailed you. 

Updated almost 4 years ago

Now managing 12 cabins and bought a 2nd one for myself as well.

hi Dustin,

I have a property in big bear as well, and have owned another in the past. Would be glad to chat with you about some of the benefits, downfalls, "must-haves", etc if you are interested. 

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I have been looking and researching for 7 months and feel as though I found a good fit finally. Would love to speak with anyone on using Airbnb or vrbo. Plan to use personally and rent when able........just found this resource and wish I had seen it months ago!!

Just updating- I'm now managing 15 cabins- bought another one for myself and looking to buy a 3rd. Things took off! Ha

That's awesome @Mike R. I think we talked before I bought my first Big Bear property, and now I'm on my 4th Big Bear property. Managed 20 for awhile then gave it up to focus on my own. Now I just manage 3 extras. They are really amazing investments. @Sarah Block , happy to answer any questions you have.

We are in escrow in the neighborhood just east of division on rainbow. It's just north of fox farms. I know it's big bear city but I like the easy flat roads and driveways, and proximity to the lake and skiing is less than 5 mins. It's also walking distance to snow play. Property costs are cheaper so hoping even if I rent less I can recoup costs a bit easier and have a decent ROI. This is also a home I plan on using quite a bit, so not purely investment. I want to take some time to make some improvements prior to renting it out but planning on being ready for Memorial Day weekend. We also have room for boat parking , as well as a hot tub and cute outdoor area so hoping that helps.

I will be using Airbnb or vrbo. Is there one you prefer? Or do you use both?

Also how many sets of linens would you suggest I have? Is it best to provide sheets and towels? Do you charge extra for using the hot tub or that’s an included amenity..I have seen both ways

I'm not in the Big Bear market, but @Sarah Block I keep three sets of sheets per bed, and three sets of towels/hand towels/wash cloths in rotation.  

I'm not sure how you'd be able to track who's using the hot tub and who's not, if that were an add-on?  At my rentals hot tub is included.

I list on both AirBNB and VRBO.  I get most of my traffic from AirBNB and prefer their interface, but no reason not to do both; you'll run into people who swear all they get is VRBO, and people who say it's all AirBNB.  I say cover your bases by using both, just make sure to sync your calendars.

Good luck!

Your cleaners will also let you know what they like you to get in terms of towels and comforters and things like that. It just depends where they do the laundry and how much time they need in between renters

hello, joining late to this discussion, in escrow on a place next to arrowhead.  Any tips on renting? Looking on AirBnB, it seems like most of them are vacant / not getting booked. 

What sort of prices are you charging? 

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Originally posted by @Lucas Carl:
@Eric Mcginn wait you’re in escrow on a place that won’t rent? Or did I read that wrong?
Originally posted by @Luke Carl:
@Eric Mcginn wait you’re in escrow on a place that won’t rent? Or did I read that wrong?

I’m in escrow on a beautiful fixer cabin in a neighborhood with houses that are all listed for twice as much. 

It's a vacation home we plan on spending time at. In the future I was considering a little STR action to cover some of the mortgage costs.

I will be doing extensive aesthetic renovations inside and out as well as past due maintenance. I should be able to flip it if we feel like it, or LTR prices in the area would allow for some positive cash flow.  

Got anything to add?  Or just wondering?

Originally posted by @Lucas Carl:
@Eric Mcginn You’re going rehab a property in California from Maine? To use as a vacation home 3500 miles away that makes little to no money? Am I missing something?

Lucas, you have a picture of a women, am missing something? 

Yes, which is why I wouldn’t bother asking except to make a point. 

I’m from Maine, I have a 3 unit there, I have connections that help if needed but I’ve got that **** on auto pilot now using 

I’ve lived in LA the past 6 years (bought Maine rental while living here) 

House prices in LA are minimum half mil, we rent and get a fantastic deal, paying half of what the mortgage on our rented  house would be. We usually go somewhere between santa Barbara, and San Diego for bicycling, beach, wine tasting, paddle boarding etc. 

It’s nice to escape LA, totally different, climates, arrowhead gets snow.  

We have fantastic credit, would have easily qualified for $700k  

We want to utilize our credit in case we decide to change jobs or move. 

Like I said, what we’re buying could be a flip if we want to move fast. But we’d like to enjoy some weekends there for ski trips etc and enjoy it.

When I said Airbnb’s were vacant, I didn’t mean entirely, I mean just looking around the site, wasn’t much more than every other weekend. 

Do you know anything about this? Care to research for me? Zip 92378

Pleasure to meet you Lucas

Big bear would have been a better money maker, but we liked arrowhead area much better after visiting some neighborhoods, plus it’s 40 minutes closer. 

What are your thoughts in purchasing land and constructing  a home by Big bear Lake. Its been a project I've been looking into and feel like it'll be a great investment, the cost is right around my price range & feel its do-able if there's return through renting???

Any thoughts and Feedback?