Profit With A Mortgage on Vacation Rentals? Blue Ridge, GA

14 Replies

Hello BP Gurus!

I'm Paul and new to Bigger Pockets. I am a car college (podcast) real estate wily veteran - but a real-life novice with one college property in Athens @ UGA. I am interested in investing in the Blue Ridge, GA area as a growing escape from bustling (and also growing) Atlanta with future appreciation and vacation rental potential.

I'd like to know if anyone here has any experience renting an investment property in Blue Ridge with a mortgage. If so, I'd love to pick your brain on expectations, lending, rental operating expenses, and potential pitfalls. I'd be happy to chat on BP or buy a coffee/lunch for your time!

Thanks in advance!  I'm looking forward to interacting on BP - I've heard tons of good things on various real estate podcasts I listen to!

Regards,

Paul K

Hey Pat 

We recently bought our cabin and we are currently on Airbnb and VRBO!  I’d be glad to share our experience so far and bounce ideas off you if you’re interested.  The calendar is filling up at our cabin but looking for ways to secure more leads!

Are you in the Atlanta area?

Hi Paul,
I live in Orlando but love the Blue Ridge area. Interested in purchasing as an investment but also would use it 1-2 a year. Would need it to at least break even. Ideally cashflow of course.
Pat

Pat,

We just bought in March, but our experience so far has been positive.  We bought near the top of our range after literally years of looking in the bottom of our range.  When I say our "range", it's more about what we thought could be cashflow neutral (top end) to cashflow positive (bottom end).  As the time went by, our preferred cabin checklist kept appreciating in price, so that also pushed our range higher.  All that said, we expect to be approximately cashflow neutral until we get enough ratings and improve our SEO on the rental sites.  I am forecasting 10% returns if we can land in our desired revenue target.  I don't see a scenario where it doesn't at least break even from a cashflow perspective (i.e. before tax advantages).

The market is interesting there - lots of aging homes and lots of new construction.  All different price points.  Depends on what your "checklist" is for your family and as a rental unit.  We had the following "checklist" and hit them all:  long-range views, 3 bedrooms, no loft, game area, paved access, near downtown blue ridge, secluded/private feel, and a hot tub.  These items are all priced into the market and you can add or subtract to come up with your own.  I would definitely suggest making a day of exploring and seeing homes.   I can recommend a realtor if you need one - mine was great and went the distance with us finally getting a purchase after several years looking!  We'd also be glad to host you in our Airbnb while you're up seeing the sights! (subtle enough plug? haha)

I hope this helps - I'd be glad to provide any other info if helpful!

Take care,

Paul

Great information and very much appreciated. I definitely agree that taking a trip up there to view the area is a must. Please let me know who the agent was you worked with as well as your cabin info so we can check it out.
Thank you!
Pat

Look up AJ Petrillo in Blue Ridge.  He's great!

Bigger Pockets won't allow posting contact # or links, so I can't send you the example of my place in Blue Ridge, but if you lookup "A Change In Altitude" on Airbnb or VRBO, you should be able to find it!

All the best,

Paul

Hi Paul,

I found it and gorgeous home and exactly what I would l want! Would you happen to have a proforma I could look at? It would be a projected one of course since your home is new. 

Thank you,

Pat

@Paul Kupfer , @Patrick Hancock , @Aundrea Newbern Would any of you be able to share some insights into this market, given the effects of the pandemic? My husband and I are interested in purchasing our first short term rental property in the next 3-6 months and are researching potential locations. Blue Ridge has a lot of positives for us - we love the area and it's in close proximity to our home, but at the end of the day we want to make sure we're making a wise investment. We would love to talk to other investors in the area for any insight you can provide. Thanks!

Hi Aundrea,

No have not purchased anything yet. Proving difficult to find someone up there who can gather past rental history for certain properties I am interested in. I did receive a breakdown of numbers such as what a house with "x" numbers of bedrooms would rent for up in TN from an agent/property manager up there which was helpful.

Pat 

Originally posted by @Ashley Rollins :

@Paul Kupfer, @Patrick Hancock , @Aundrea Newbern Would any of you be able to share some insights into this market, given the effects of the pandemic? My husband and I are interested in purchasing our first short term rental property in the next 3-6 months and are researching potential locations. Blue Ridge has a lot of positives for us - we love the area and it's in close proximity to our home, but at the end of the day we want to make sure we're making a wise investment. We would love to talk to other investors in the area for any insight you can provide. Thanks!

Hi Ashley - yes, we have been fully booked ever since BR opened back up for STRs in May.  High occupancy % and higher $ rate than 2019 - we're noticing people want to be out of the house and into nature!  :)

I'd be happy to share information about our rental and our experience in BR so far.  We have had the cabin for just over 2 years and lots of good data and experience to show for it.  We do not use a property management company b/c they're very expensive and the time commitment is not much if you setup your "systems".  Honestly we also enjoy knowing what is going on with the property, too.  Here is the link to our property if you're interested in seeing it: 

We're currently looking in the market as well - we'd love to just clone ours!
DM me if you'd like to discuss!

All the best,

Paul