The Smokies are generally known for Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge, Wears Valley, and Sevierville. All of these locations are very similar in regard to profitability. So, here’s what you do: you find a real estate agent to help you out, secure your financing, and start looking at the vast amount of properties available. But here’s the catch – you might not know much about the area. Your Realtor needs to cover you on that, but just to cover your bases, here’s a tip: look for properties that are <25 minutes from Pigeon Forge Parkway, Downtown Gatlinburg, or an entrance to the National Park. That way, you’ll be close to all the fun attractions families love, which is super important for attracting guests to the rental market.
Another thing to consider is the accessibility to your property. Nobody wants to deal with tricky, hard-to-drive roads all the time. Take 4WD out of the equation. So, before you commit, either take a drive to the property yourself or have your Realtor do it. This way, you can make sure the road is in good shape and won’t give you any trouble. But remember, there is a good chance certain accessibility cons can be negotiated in your contract. If a property checks all the boxes but you’re worried about the road, talk to your Realtor about possible solutions – know your options. To go along with this, always have your Realtor verify the zoning codes with each property. Certain restrictions apply and can limit the use of a property. Use this cheat sheet as a good reference in the meantime!