Airbnb customers are finding temporary lodging in West Texas and the Hill Country and helping to drive up the popularity of real estate in these areas. According to Airbnb, five rural counties in Texas have brought in over $1 million in earnings from August 2017 to July 2018. Equally impressive was the growth rate in the 177 rural county Airbnb's in Texas, which saw an increase of 93 percent. That's double the growth rate in urban counties.
Gillespie County has the highest income generation. The 230 Airbnb's in the county hosted 50,000 visitors during a yearlong period. Gillespie, which is just an hour and a half away from Austin and San Antonio, offers various attractions like the Enchanted Rock State Natural Area, so it's understandable that visitors would be flocking to the county.
The second and third most popular rural counties on Airbnb in Texas were Brewster and Presidio Counties respectively. These counties hosted 28,700 visitors at their 190 active Airbnb locations. Brewster is home to one of the most popular parks in Texas, Big Bend National Park. Airbnb locations in the area were priced below $100 up to $350 per night.
The popularity of Airbnb in Texas rural counties could make a real estate purchase in these areas a little bit more attractive because homeowners could have the opportunity to generate side income to offset the costs of owning their homes. According to the Texas Land Commissioner, Airbnb has brought economic opportunity to rural communities in Texas. "I am grateful for Airbnb's commitment to bringing economic opportunity to rural Texas in a new and innovative way," he said.
Before you buy an "Airbnb investment property," you might want to investigate the legal issues that could come into play. By speaking with a Texas real estate attorney, you can learn about important matters that could pertain to your real estate investment.