The Five Best and Five Worst Cities for Airbnb Investing

Real estate is all about location, location, location – and the same is true for AirBnb rentals. According to a new study, there are five markets that top the list on location, and five that are much weaker than all others. So what are the best five – and worst five – markets for AirBnb investing?

Best Five Markets

These markets were selected based on a number of factors including rates, occupancy, competition from hotels, and a number of other factors.

  • Palm Springs, California. This market benefits from some huge events, such as Coachella and Stagecoach music festivals. Warm weather year-round is a huge attraction, particularly in winter months.
  •  Lahaina, Hawaii. Located on the island of Maui, this location has fantastic weather, coupled with a small number of hotel options that are all extremely expensive.
  •  Davenport, Florida. Warm weather and a close proximity to Winter Haven and Lakeland make this a good spot.
  •  Bend, Oregon. This town is known as the “gateway to outdoor sports” due to its location on two major rivers in a fantastic scenic setting.
  •  Nashville, Tennessee. This city is currently ranked #1 in the U.S. for bachelorette parties, as well as the center of country western music.

Five Worst Markets

These markets came in last based on the same criteria.

  • Miami Beach, Florida. While there is huge demand for this location, there’s also huge competition from both AirBnbs and hotels. There’s also the risk of hurricanes.
  • Venice, California. This is a very in-demand market, but the properties are incredibly expensive so it’s just very hard to make any money here.
  • Berkeley, California. Once again, the problem is not demand, but the inability to find a property that can produce a profit based on extremely high home prices.
  •  Oakland, California. Same issue as in Berkeley – a whole lot of demand but virtually nothing that can be bought at a low enough price to ever turn a profit.
  •  Houston, Texas. Simply too much competition here. Houston has no zoning laws, and the market is awash in hotels and AirBnb properties. Although real estate prices are low, so is occupancy.


There are many factors at play in making money with an AirBnb property. Not only do you need lots of demand, but you also need to have lesser competition and lower real estate costs to make profitably a sure thing. This list not only gives you some location tips, but demonstrates the angles required to succeed in this sector.

By Frank Rolfe

Frank Rolfe has been a commercial real estate investor for almost three decades, and currently holds nearly $1 billion of properties in 25 states. His books and courses on commercial property acquisitions and management are among the top-selling in the industry.