Investing in Your Vacation Rental Purchase: The Value of Thoughtful Design and High-End Features

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By: Brad Greiner, CEO of Open Air Homes and OpenAiRE Brokerage

August 8, 2023

The Real Estate Market is Changing 

The real estate market, particularly for vacation rentals, is constantly evolving. Today, with vacation rental platforms like Airbnb and Vrbo becoming mainstream, guests’ expectations are increasing. A recent article by Dan Latu in Business Insider, highlights a growing trend – mid-range, outdated vacation rentals are struggling to stay booked. 

According to Airbnb and Vrbo hosts, “It’s a listing stuck in the mediocre middle, and it’s not getting booked — even during the most competitive summer for hosts in the past three years.” These properties, often decorated with dated furniture and offering minimal amenities, have failed to attract guests despite being reasonably priced. 

Jamie Lane, AirDNA’s chief economist, suggests that this trend is here to stay. He stated, “As short-term rentals get more and more mainstream, there’s going to be higher expectations that go along with it.”

Success in the Vacation Rental Market

On the other hand, luxury properties with updated, stylish interiors and comprehensive amenities continue to experience strong bookings. Their clientele is often less affected by economic uncertainty, leading to consistent demand. 

A host in Phoenix observed that guests are often looking for a vacation stay that “jumps off the page.” In other words, they’re seeking properties that offer something beyond their everyday living arrangements. This is an important insight for anyone considering investing in vacation rentals. 

Making the Right Choices with OpenAiRE and Open Air Homes

At OpenAiRE, our agents understand these industry trends. We work closely with our sister company, Open Air Homes, which has been operating in the vacation rental industry for a decade. Our shared expertise ensures that our clients are equipped to make the right choices when investing in a vacation property. 

Desert Owl Ranch by Open Air Homes

When considering a second home as an investment, it’s crucial to ensure that the property will have high market demand. This doesn’t necessarily mean breaking the bank to purchase a high-end luxury home. But it does suggest that investing in outdated, mid-tier properties might lead to difficulties in attracting bookings.

As the Business Insider article rightly suggests, outdated interiors and mediocre amenities simply won’t cut it. To quote Jamie Lane, “You can’t keep the 30-year-old grandma furniture in place, rent it out, and expect to get good occupancy levels.”

Working with OpenAiRE and Open Air Homes, our clients can navigate this shifting landscape with confidence. Our teams collaborate during the decision-making process, leveraging the insights of Open Air Homes’ ten years of experience in high-end vacation rentals to guide our clients’ property investments. This expertise helps ensure that the properties our clients invest in meet the current market’s high demand. 

In conclusion, the vacation rental market is becoming more discerning, and properties need to stand out. Thoughtful design, modern aesthetics, and comprehensive amenities have become key in securing bookings. At OpenAiRE, we guide our clients to make informed decisions, avoiding the pitfalls of the mediocre middle and ensuring their investment properties truly stand out.

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