Does anyone invest in wine country vacation homes? It looks like you can make a nice return on places near the russian river going the short term vacation rental route but having a hard time finding ones that would also cash flow as a long term rental.
Look forward to hearing your thoughts
Michael, this is the right scenario where short term rentals can win over long term, and where you might be able to find real estate prices that can lead to cash flow opportunities. However, there are a lot of restrictions on vacation rentals in California wine country. Check on local regulations--that can often be different from one street to the next--before buying. County and city regulations should be easy to locate on websites.
Michael, @Gerard Lester is right, there are a lot of different rules and regulations from market to market. I'm currently doing a research project into the top markets to identify where it might make sense to legally invest in short term rentals.
With that said, STRs work well in high price environments. The additional income helps to justify the higher price paid and can even result in positive cash flows if run well. Keep in mind that your success will be largely on how well you market your property an take care of guests. The trade off with short-term rental is a less "passive" income property.
Best thing to do is get information from those who know.
I know that @Kendrick Walker has owned vacation rentals in the Russian River area. Reach out to him or I can help you connect.
VRBO, AirBnB, and other STR are severely restricted in the wine country - - specifics are with each city, so do your homework before laying down any earnest money.
Here's a link to the Sonoma County Website. Russian River falls under their jurisdiction.