If you’ve been dreaming of achieving financial freedom and securing a comfortable retirement, you’ve probably already spent some time saving up money, investing in stocks, contributing to your 401(k), and making the most out of a high-paying job.
But it’s getting on the property investing ladder that is still one of the best ways to generate wealth, boost your investment portfolio, and achieve your financial goals that much quicker.
Within the realm of real estate investing and vacation rentals, one of the investments that’s hardly discussed but incredibly profitable is investing in the gorgeous Smoky Mountains. Far from the oversaturated market of beach houses and sprawling urban centers, the Smoky Mountains’ scenic landscape can appeal to local “staycationers” and tourists alike, making for a great vacation rental investment for both first-timers and seasoned real estate investors.
So, let us walk you through the main reasons why purchasing a log cabin in the Smoky Mountains makes for such a profitable investment and how to make the most out of your short-term rental property in this popular location.
Why Choose the Smoky Mountains?
The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is a popular vacation hotspot for visitors from all over the country, receiving as many as over 11 million visitors in 2016 and a whopping 12 million in 2020 (yes, even during the pandemic).
The stunning national park straddles North Carolina and Tennessee, making for an incredibly accessible location, as it isn't a long driving distance from most Eastern US states.
The Great Smoky Mountains offer a wide variety of both family-friendly and outdoor adventure activities, including unparalleled hiking trails, scenic driving and biking tours, waterfall visits, and adventurous water sports.
Thanks to the memorable natural beauty of the mountains and the array of activities available, the Smoky Mountains make for the perfect location for investing in a vacation rental property, especially cozy and picturesque log cabins overseeing the mountains.
The Best Location for Investing in the Smoky Mountains
According to a recent analysis conducted by the short-term rental analytics website AirdDNA, Tennessee’s very own Gatlinburg and Sevierville are two of the best places to invest in vacation rentals in 2021. These two mountainside towns rank in the top five most dependable large market areas in the US, resisting the challenges of the 2020 pandemic and still attracting millions of visitors.
Looking at these statistics and considering that the Smoky Mountains is undoubtedly the top tourist destination in both Sevierville and Gatlinburg, these two are the best places to buy a log cabin to rent out to visitors.
But the appeal of these stunning mountainside towns goes beyond the natural beauty and popularity of the area. Investing in a log cabin in the Smoky Mountains will allow you to make the most out of the property in both spring and summer, thanks to the array of activities available throughout the year, guaranteeing incredibly short vacancy periods throughout.
Not to mention, you can easily turn your rental investment into a gorgeous, rustic vacation home for you and your family, too!
So, Are Log Cabins a Good Investment?
Log homes and cabins certainly have a timeless attraction to them, and they are usually a safe housing style to invest in, seeing as they're often sought after in the real estate vacation market.
While most visitors choose to stay in log cabins to enjoy the rustic atmosphere and immersion in nature they provide, you can easily set your property apart from all the rest by altering it to fit a more modern, streamlined style.
Despite the popularity of the Smoky Mountains area, you’ll be able to find a well-presented, well-maintained cabin on the market there for a lot less than what most urban markets and beach houses ask for.
In terms of the viability of the short-term rental market as a whole, savvy investors shouldn’t think twice before diving into the exciting, highly profitable world of vacation rentals. The industry is one of the fastest-growing real estate markets in the US and abroad, worth an estimated $44.4 million as of 2020 and projected to grow even more as travelers move away from sterile big chain hotels and seek more authentic, homely alternatives for accommodation.
All in all, buying a log cabin in the Smoky Mountains is a great investment option for expanding your real estate portfolio or even investing in your first rental property to start operating a profitable business.
But as with all real estate investments, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t streamline your action plan as much as you can before committing to a purchase!
What to Consider When Buying a Log Cabin
When trying to buy a log cabin to rent out or for occasional use, it’s generally best to make sure it won’t be needing any extensive repairs or upgrades, as the natural materials that are more often used in classic cabins might not be as convenient or cheap to replace as your traditional cement.
It’s best practice to visit the place at least three times before buying to make sure it’s up to your standards, consulting with a repair and maintenance team throughout to assess what minor work might be needed. One major area to consider before buying is the exterior: Sometimes the finish might start flaking, and it’s crucial you ensure that the property has a gutter to shield the house from getting wet, as dampness will lead to rot. On top of that, you might consider waterproofing or staining the wood, and double-check that the gutter’s downspout doesn't drain close to the foundations.
These are issues that are specific to cabins, so you should do your fair share of research beforehand and include all the work your cabin might need to be safe in your tally of potential expenses. Consider how much any minor upgrades and refurbishing might be and cross-reference the total expenses with your worst-case scenario profit calculation. Only then will you be able to know whether a specific cabin will make for a good investment.
Find Your Dream Cabin in the Mountains
No matter where they might be located, log cabins possess timeless beauty and a universally pleasing aesthetic, usually seamlessly built within a natural landscape in order to preserve the local habitat and offer unforgettable views.
As such, owning a cabin in the Smoky Mountains will ensure your rental property will always be in demand, yielding substantial returns and even making for a great holiday home for your retirement. You’ll enjoy nature, fresh air, and all the other incredible benefits that come with living in green spaces!
Still, we know that finding the perfect investment cabin can be an overwhelming and daunting process. That’s why The Short Term Shop offers a foolproof listing page of beautiful log cabins in the Smoky Mountains, including diverse properties in Sevierville and Gatlinburg, designed for making your search for the perfect Smoky Mountains property as easy as it can be. Let’s make your real estate investment dreams come true!