Top 7 Cities for Airbnb Investment

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Top 7 Cities for Airbnb Investment

Table of Contents

Before starting your Airbnb business, you first need to find the right property to rent. To help budding real estate moguls find the best city to invest in, we conducted a study of the 100 most populated cities in the nation, looking at their average occupancy rates, monthly revenue, cost of living, and several other factors. Curious to see which cities made the cut? Check out our list below to see the best (and worst) cities to invest in an Airbnb property.

Learn more about our methodology here.

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1. Greensboro, North Carolina

The top city to invest in an Airbnb property is Greensboro, North Carolina. With low housing prices and the third-highest monthly Airbnb revenue of all 100 cities studied, Greensboro is a great city to snatch up property and start turning a profit (though make sure to check out how tax collection works in North Carolina). 

But that’s not all the city has to offer. The Gate City has a typical occupancy rate of just shy of 50%. Combined with a $193 average nightly rate and a low cost of living, you can rest easy knowing that your rental property (and wallet) will be pretty full all year around.

Interested in getting started, or already have a rental property in the area and want to make things official? Learn how to start a North Carolina LLC with Incfile today.

Average Airbnb Price By State:

$193

Airbnb Occupancy Rates:

49%

Cost of Living:

83.9

Median Home Price:

$247,739

Best Cities to Visit Ranking:

N/A

Average Monthly Revenue of Airbnbs:

$3,771

2. Nashville, Tennessee

Grab your cowboy boots and get ready to hit the dance hall because Nashville, Tennessee, comes in second place for the best city to invest in Airbnb. Whether you choose to live nearby or you’re looking to invest in a city you’ve never lived in before, Nashville offers plenty of perks worthy of taking advantage of. 

The average Airbnb rakes in just under $4,000 a month, and though the cost of living and housing prices are a little steep, the average revenue and higher-than-normal occupancy rate of 56% means you’re likely to recoup your initial investment quickly. Get started by opening a Tennessee LLC for your business today — but make sure to read up on Nashville’s rules and regulations so you know what you’re getting into.

Average Airbnb Price By State:

$272

Airbnb Occupancy Rates:

56%

Cost of Living:

101.4

Median Home Price:

$455,157

Best Cities to Visit Ranking:

N/A

Average Monthly Revenue of Airbnbs:

$3,911

3. New Orleans, Louisiana

Beignets, jazz, and seafood galore — what’s not to love about New Orleans? NOLA has culture oozing out of its pores, making it a must-visit destination for bachelorette parties, vacations, and everything in between. Take advantage of this famous locale by getting a property of your own and turning it into a beautiful Airbnb that matches the city's flair.

Benefits of investing in The Big Easy include low housing costs, high occupancy rates for rental properties, and a lower-than-average cost of living (perfect for those who want to live where they do business). Protect your personal assets and take your real estate biz to the next level by getting the proper permits and forming a Louisiana LLC with us.

Average Airbnb Price By State:

$201

Airbnb Occupancy Rates:

51%

Cost of Living:

96.3

Median Home Price:

$283,708

Best Cities to Visit Ranking:

N/A

Average Monthly Revenue of Airbnbs:

$2,759

4. Birmingham, Alabama

If you don’t have that much money to invest upfront but still want to get in on the Airbnb game, consider Birmingham, Alabama, for your next LLC venture. With the third-lowest housing costs of all the cities we studied, your bank account can sigh in relief as you begin your entrepreneurial journey. You can expect to rake in around $1,884 a month from your Birmingham Airbnb, though that number depends heavily on your property's condition, location, and several other factors.

Average Airbnb Price By State:

$204

Airbnb Occupancy Rates:

51%

Cost of Living:

74.1

Median Home Price:

$112,284

Best Cities to Visit Ranking:

N/A

Average Monthly Revenue of Airbnbs:

$1,884

5. Buffalo, New York

Coming in at number five for the best cities to invest in Airbnb is Buffalo, New York. And while you might be surprised to learn that Buffalo is one of the country's top 100 tourist destination cities, that’s not the only reason the city is worth investing in.

Buffalo is in the top 50% of Airbnb prices out of all 100 cities studied and is also home to a low cost of living, low housing costs, and decent occupancy rates. And the good news is, there are only a few permits and registration forms you need to complete to get started. So whether you’re looking for a small real estate side hustle or want to start an empire, consider planting your roots in Buffalo.

Average Airbnb Price By State:

$216

Airbnb Occupancy Rates:

49%

Cost of Living:

79.5

Median Home Price:

$210,685

Best Cities to Visit Ranking:

97

Average Monthly Revenue of Airbnbs:

$1,899

6. Memphis, Tennessee

What do you get when you combine the eighth-highest Airbnb price, the fourth-highest occupancy rate, the fourth-lowest cost of living, and the fifth-lowest home price of all the cities we studied? You get a great city to invest in, also known as Memphis, Tennessee.

Though Memphis comes in a bit lower on this list than its neighbor to the east, Nashville, it actually beats the capital city out when it comes to the cost of living and average home price, meaning you can get a lot more bang for your buck in the Home of the Blues.

Average Airbnb Price By State:

$272

Airbnb Occupancy Rates:

56%

Cost of Living:

76

Median Home Price:

$158,139

Best Cities to Visit Ranking:

N/A

Average Monthly Revenue of Airbnbs:

$1,735

7. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Rounding out our list of the best places to invest in a rental property is Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. This eastern city boasts a low cost of living and low real estate prices, in addition to a higher monthly Airbnb revenue than many other cities on this list. And if that alone doesn’t convince you to get a realtor, consider that Pittsburgh is over 264 years old, meaning there are plenty of architectural beauties to swoop up and turn into an elegant place to stay with minimal effort.

Heard enough? Open up shop by forming a Pennsylvania LLC and reading up on Airbnb’s tips for your Pittsburgh real estate business.

Average Airbnb Price By State:

$192

Airbnb Occupancy Rates:

45%

Cost of Living:

87.5

Median Home Price:

$227,928

Best Cities to Visit Ranking:

N/A

Average Monthly Revenue of Airbnbs:

$2,241

Four Cities to Reconsider Investing in an Airbnb

Way before you list your property on Airbnb or even buy property in the first place, it’s crucial to do the proper research. Investing in rental properties in the wrong city can mean the difference between turning a profit and having to sell. Not to mention, you would be on the hook for all those mortgage payments until you start to break even or find the right buyer.

Lucky for you, we’ve already taken a look at some of the most important factors for cities all across the United States. From outrageously expensive home prices to less-than-ideal occupancy rates, we recommend staying away from the following cities when looking to start your real estate business.

City:

Irvine, CA

Fremont, CA

Anchorage, AK

Chesapeake, VA

Average Airbnb Price By State:

$258

$258

$162

$181

Airbnb Occupancy Rates:

53%

53%

39%

45%

Cost of Living:

187.1

227.3

123.5

106.4

Median Home Price:

$1,303,853

$1,490,768

$424,717

$375,665

Best Cities to Visit Ranking:

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

Average Monthly Revenue of Airbnbs:

$919

$1,081

$1,312

$1,066

Whether you plan to make your listing a real estate side hustle or you want to take things to the next level and open several rental properties, Incfile’s got your back. Our team of experts can help you calculate your business taxes, file for foreign qualification, and do anything else your business might need. Contact us today to learn more.

 

Methodology 

To determine the best and worst cities for Airbnb investments, the Incfile team collected a wide range of data (shown below) for the 100 most populated cities in the country. Each data set was weighted based on significance, then the total score for each city was calculated and given a ranking. The cities with the highest scores were given the attribute of best cities to invest in Airbnb.

  • Average Airbnb Price By State (Source: AllTheRooms)
    • Weight: .20
  • Airbnb Occupancy Rates (Source: Medium - AllTheRooms)
    • Weight: .24
  • Cost of Living (Source: bestplaces)
    • Weight: .10
  • Median Home Price (Source: Zillow)
    • Weight: .12
  • Best Cities to Visit (Source: holidify)
    • Weight: 
  • Average Monthly Revenue - October 2022 (Source: AllTheRooms)
    • Weight: .26

This study was conducted in December 2022.

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