Airbnb Market Data - AirDNA

24 Replies

Hello BP world! I am looking to expand my VR business out of our home state of Colorado in search of greener pastures. One of the most powerful tools on the market is the AirDNA "Market Minder" that allows you to analyze Airbnb revenue data vs. rental and ownership rates to find the best buy and lease deals for the purposes of renting them back out on the STR market. The cost for nationwide access is $500/mo. If anyone is interested in this product, or already has access and willing to share insight for $$ please let me know or PM. Would also be happy to use this thread to discuss this tool in more depth and hear how folks have been using it successfully to find the best places for Airbnb and short term rental investment. Thanks!

Have you looked at Mashvisor?  I think 500 is really steep. Mashvisor is running a 50% off promo with 30 d free trial. 

@Tyler Work , great news!  Can't wait to hear about your adventure into greener pastures!  AirDNA is extremely comprehensive and robust platform as well as Mashvisor.  You could also check out Everbooked as well as for market and comps reports at $100/month.  They have a 30 day money back guarantee as well.  

In my humble opinion, all these platforms have great insights but I also remind everyone that they are only pulling AirBNB data, and you should not forget the VRBO/HomeAway contingency of data that is not included when evaluating your markets.  Just to help firm up any decisions.  Unfortunately there is no open data for that so it's a lot of scanning listings in target areas for now but every little bit of info helps! 

Best of luck to you!


Homeaway now has alot of analytical tools built in and Homeaway does not charge to use them.

I looked at a demo of what AirDNA offers before Homeaway came out with these new tools and didn't see anything that I can't get for free by looking at competing STR properties on Homeaway and Airbnb.

I keep a spreadsheet of competing properties that are similar and close to me to look at their occupancy rates and prices to make sure I stay competitive. The popular ones I see what amenities they offer to see if there is anything I need to change to stay competitive. As my calendar fills up I can increase prices for remaining dates.

It is also important to know your market and price appropriately for high demand events and holidays.

Homeaway shows a chart of when there is an increase in activity for certian dates.

It is really that easy. I don't know why anyone would want to pay for information that is readily available.

@Karen Chenaille @Jon Crosby Thank you both!  I have heard of Mashvisor but for some reason thought it was only for the purposes of traditional RE investing, I will definitely check them out.  I could see the $500 being worth it for 1 month if I went in on it with a few other folks but I agree it is likely not worth it for one individual.

Agree with you completely on the lack of VRBO data Jon - however, in markets like Denver Airbnb accounts for almost 100% of bookings so the other data doesn't provide much.  I would love to see a breakdown of which markets get what percentage from which rental platform.  I know that a lot of vacation markets get most of their revenue from VRBO. 

I've been scouring AirDNA data for months now, as I get ready to buy my first AirBNB in Gatlinburg. What I found is the "Investment Explorer" is great for looking at what individual properties are doing (Investment Explorer is FREE for Tennessee!).  "Market Minder" is good to see how well a city is doing -- in particular using the "Top properties" section to try and copy what the top properties are doing. What I really want from it though, is a nationwide list of cities ranked "A". What good is subscribing to, say, the Seattle market, only to find out it's rated "C-"?  I reached out to AirDNA and they offered a list of all "A" rated cities plus the top 100 cities with best RevPAR for $750 (or $250/mo with 6-mo minimum). That's too rich for me but I would be interested in pooling with a few other people.

@Tim Schroeder  This is the best report I've found to what I think you're looking for.  I'd also be willing to go in on that report and can probably find a few others who would be interested as well.   Also - congrats and good luck on your first property! 

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@Tyler Work One thing I'm struggling with is whether to buy several properties in the Gatlinburg/Pigeon Forge area and benefit from one support team (realtor/cleaner/handyman) or diversify to another area so as to not have all eggs in one basket. But the Pigeon Forge numbers are just irresistible. For example one on my shortlist is a $430k purchase with documented income last year of $80k. Expense estimates (of $27k plus $20k debt service yields $33k net income, which is a 33% COC ROI. I have not found better numbers anywhere. Caveat here is this is assuming self-management on AirBNB or VRBO which is time-consuming. But for those numbers, I am happy to do it. 3-4 of these and I can quit my humdrum day job and do this instead. But I am nervous about having too many vacation rentals in one small area (also worried a bit about another possible housing bubble burst, but that is another discussion...)

@Tyler Work I'm a bit leery of articles like that article. They don't give any indication how their math works. They give "Estimated Rental Income" without explaining whether that includes cost basis, they don't say whether that's average or median, and how they come to these numbers. It's so very, very general. I guess what it DOES do though, is say to people, "Hey, go look here, it's potentially a good city to invest in". Maybe buy an AirDNA report on the top 5 on that list, and start asking around. Good as a tool to compare one city against another, but not put any faith the numbers themselves. Thanks for sharing it. I was pleased to see my top two areas (Pigeon Forge and Palm Springs) in the Top 6.

@Tim Schroeder I'm with you on the Rented articles.  High lack of backup on how they came up with their data but it tells me that at least one human being thought about this and put a report together on a halfway reputable site.  If someone has better data I would love to see it!

Regarding spreading out your risk I understand your concern about having to find new support staff every time you move into a new area, that takes time and lots of it.  However, most people I see investing nationally (not just where they live) are spreading out their portfolio.  I think the benefits are to hedge your risk against seasonality, regulation, market downturns, and other outside factors.  What happens when Gatlinburg outlaws Airbnb altogether and you've spent your life savings investing in that one area?  If the market is seasonal like Denver, you are earning huge returns in the summer and barely breaking even in the winter, I would rather be earning cash all year by investing in markets that have opposite or no seasonality.  If you feel confident you've found the unicorn and there is very little risk for increased regulation, go for it, no reason to reinvent the wheel.  

@Tyler Work - is this a monthly fee? I might be interested! Let me know how many people you find here. 

@Tyler Work you ever been to Gatlinburg? If they outlaw vacation rentals the entire local economy would crash.

Remember, there’s a difference between an “Airbnb” (your cousins hammock in his back yard) and a Vacation Rental. People have been doing vacation rentals in Gatlinburg for decades. Long before Airbnb came around. In fact most folks in Gatlinburg still don’t use us. 90% of them use a PM that charges 40% because no one wants to self manage. The advertise with and VRBO. They don’t use Airbnb because they can’t charge the extra 12.75% tax to the guests.

If you’re “airbnbing” in Denver how many of your neighbors are also airbnbing? In Gatlinburg you can guarantee all of your neighbors, with very few exceptions, are renting per night just like you are.

People have been renting homes on the beach since the beach existed. Long before Denver existed. I’ll trade you two nights in my hut to impress your cave woman in exchange for half a Buffalo.

Airbnb gets outlawed because people abuse it and nightly rent apartments that they have a lease on by undercutting hotels and providing a kitchen. That apartment has 20 neighbors that live there and don’t want people puking and leaving the next day.

Eventually the wold will catch up to “Airbnb” and realize it’s just an app. Not a type of property.

There’s a reason people don’t throw the term “vrbo” around at Christmas dinner. “Oh we stayed in a VRBO on the beach in tulum last month it was so fabulous” Marketing. That little pink app on your phone makes you cool.

I’ll admit Airbnb is a far superior platform in almost every aspect. But it also has a habit of ruffling the wrong feathers. Such as hotel owners. And they deserve to be ruffled.

Airbnb also needs to figure out their tax situation. Pronto. State sales tax is due on all over night rentals. Your cousin with the hammock doesn’t pay his sales tax. The guy next door with his legal property is paying sales tax and using VRBO. Airbnb will get bit over this in the near future. And they already have, for millions, in many markets.

In my opinion the sooner they get their act together with paying taxes the longer it will last. If they keep trying to hide from it it’s only a matter of time before a more legit service that plays ball with the tax man comes along.

Again. The cabin in Gatlinburg will always find a renter.

I hear you, But Gatlinburg/PF has a 10 month high season, and almost EVERYTHING is STR and has been for a very long time. I can't imagine how they could outlaw STR without losing tourism dollars that supports the area. They could always add some modest tax and regulation but I don't see an aggressive effort to outlaw it outright. Seems to me to be very different than, say, Nashville with it's hotel industry. I called the city hall in Sevierville and Gatlinburg and there are no rules or plans at the moment to regulate. But, don't forget, I am new at this.

Originally posted by @Craig Curelop :

@Tyler Work - is this a monthly fee? I might be interested! Let me know how many people you find here. 

 It is.  Plan was to buy it for a month, use the hell out of it, then cancel.  

And as far as AirDNA don’t waste your time. Search other properties in your market and see what they’re renting for and how often, and do your own math. Send other hosts in your market a message. Message 200 of them. Eventually you’ll ask the right question to the right person.

Not everyone has what it takes to run a successful vacation rental.

Anyone can sponsor a race car. Doesn’t mean you should drive it.

@Tim Schroeder , before you purchase anything in Gatlinburg, it would be a good idea to fly out and actually put your own eyeballs on the property. They had a HUGE fire in November 2016 and a lot of homes were destroyed or damaged. It would be worth the plane trip out there to make sure you're not buying a disaster.

I know. I'm going in January to look around. Thanks.

@Mindy Jensen  @Tim Schroeder  I have the entire market memorized you can give me an address and I’ve already been inside. And Im not even the realtor in the family. As per the latest podcast and book launch you can buy properties out of state without looking at them. You just need the right people on your team. 

@Lucas Carl You do know that I'm coming to see your wife (the realtor in the family) in a couple weeks, don't you?  PM me your phone number. Avery is taking good care of me but it would still be nice to talk to you about a few things. Tim.

I did not know that but I’m totally relieved knowing you’re in such good hands in our market. 

@Tyler Work in California.  What are you going to do when some local people (who you are their competition) find out about your property and try to sabotage your efforts?  I know you can't drive by the place twice a day, but they could.  They could drive by and throw out some Johnson grass seeds, or cockleburr seeds, or dog poo into your front yard of the rental.  They might even do something simple like throwing t.p. over the house and trees.  You might get water balloons filled with RoundUp or Pramitol thrown in your lawn. Paintball guns can leave a mess too.  They could do any of the above and then call to code enforcement department about a violation. Maybe none of this will happen, but don't let the thought of it happening discourage you. 

@Tyler Work ,

I’m interested in pooling funds for a one month run at glory. Please let me know what’s the plan of action.

I would be interested as well.  I have used the AirDNA Market Minder report for a few specific zip codes, which they charge $15 per zip code for a one-off report.  I found it pretty useful as each report shows both annual and monthly income for 4 of the closest comparable properties and I had specific zip codes I was targeting, and I got lucky in that my property was previously used as an AirBNB so i could see exact numbers. But unfortunately you have to pay up to get the more macro level reports trying to find the best markets to target. 

I also found it helpful to ask for comps from both local property managers and national property managers (Vacasa, Turnkey, etc.) with a presence in my target area, which provides a more complete picture since they're using all the booking sites rather than just one.  

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