March 2023 Sevier County, Tennessee Real Estate Market Update

Homes

Average price saw a 33% jump from last year at $926,103, compared to $693,727 in March of 2023.

There were 30 homes that sold during the month of March at over $1 Million. This is a sizeable lift from the 10 homes sold over $1 Million in February and 12 homes sold over $1 Million in January.

Days on market saw a yet another sizeable reduction to 46 days, down from 64 days on the market in February. This is a 15% reduction when compared to March of 2023 at 54 days on the market.

Price per square foot saw another bump during march at $386, up from $373 in February.

 

 

Lots/Land

 

The average price for land/lots during saw a dip to $86,410 when compared to February at $102,283. This is a 39% reduction when compared to March of 2023, when the average price of land/lots was $141,814.

Lots that sold in March spent an average of 247 days on the market, which is a 52% increase when compared to March of 2023 at 163 days on the market.

 

3 Amenities to Maximize Your Short Term Rental Income

In this blog post, we’re diving deep into three amenities that can help you maximize your rental income: pools, gyms, and hot tubs.

AirDNA provides a few stats related to the availability of these amenities 

  • Pools are found in 44% of luxury properties, versus 25% of budget properties.
  • Hot tubs are featured in about 33% of luxury listings, while only 5% of budget properties include them.
  • Gyms appear in approximately 24% of luxury properties, compared to 16% in budget listings.

 

 

Pools 

There are so many different ways you can provide pool access for your short term rental – resort pool, inground outdoor pool, above ground outdoor pool, stock tank pool, swim spa, or inground indoor pool, and probably many more creative ideas we haven’t listed. 

Most often we see these three types of pools at short term rentals in the Smokes 

  • Resort access 
  • Inground indoor 
  • Swim spa 

Why a pool at your short term rental?

Providing a way for your renters to create memories with the group they are traveling with without leaving your property is a huge benefit! 

Not only is this a benefit to your guest, but can be a benefit to you as a property owner through increased desirability and the ability for higher nightly rates. 

 

Maintenance considerations for the pool at your short term rental

You’ll want to consider ongoing maintenance when deciding if a pool is right for you as a short term property owner, such as 

  • Regular cleaning and chemical treatment.
  • Safety measures (fencing, pool rules, etc.).
  • Potential liability concerns and insurance coverage.

“Specifically, luxury listings with pools see a Revenue Per Available Rental (RevPAR) increase of around 38% compared to those without pools.”

 

Hot tubs 

Your guests have most likely packed their schedules full of fun things to do while they are in town, whether that be a full day out on the town or hiking in the Smokies. 

Providing a way for them to wind down and relax after a long day is such a benefit! 

Not only does a hot tub provide a relaxing experience for your guests, it can also be a benefit to you as property owner by complementing your outdoor space and allowing you to command a premium nightly rate. 

You’ll want to consider ongoing maintenance when deciding if a hot tub is right for you as a short term property owner such as regular cleaning, chemical treatment. As well as, potential liability concerns and required insurance coverage. 

“With a reported RevPAR increase of around 33% for luxury properties with hot tubs.”

 

Gyms 

Maintaining your health is extremely important – what a benefit to provide the ability to do so without having to take additional time out of their well deserved vacations to find the opportunity to do so. 

Adding a gym, whether big or small, to your vacation rental allows you to meet the needs of health conscious individuals conveniently

You’ll want to consider potential liability concerns and required insurance coverage when deciding if adding a gym to your short term rental property is advantageous for you. 

“While the inclusion of pools and hot tubs offers the largest RevPAR and occupancy boosts for higher-tier properties, the inclusion of gyms actually benefits lower-tier properties more. They experience a larger boost in RevPAR and occupancy rates.”

 

*It’s important to note that the information provided in this blog post is for general informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. While we have made every effort to provide accurate and up-to-date information, we cannot guarantee the accuracy or completeness of the information provided. 

 

The Evolution of Short-Term Rentals: A Guide for Potential Property Owners

The vacation rental landscape is rapidly evolving. Today’s travelers demand reliability, comfort, and personalized touches that traditional hotels often struggle to provide. 

By embracing this shift savvy short term rental property owners can set apart their properties and capitalize on a rapidly growing market segment. 

This blog post explores the changing landscape and strategies to position your short-term rental for success!

 

The Changing Landscape of Vacation Rentals

The vacation rental landscape has undergone a number of changes in the rental years. 

Travelers have new expectations. They are looking for reliability, comfort, and personalized touches. Each of these things make short term rentals an attractive option! 

When comparing stand alone vacation homes to traditional hotel stays, the advantages are clear.

 

The ability to have a local experience 

Some guests are looking to live like a local, to explore the off the beaten path things to do, to experience the community vibes.

 

Unique accommodations 

Some guests need a space that fits their unique situations, and some guests are just looking for a way to have a different experience. 

 

Options for extended stays

Some guests are looking for the ability to have an extended experience. 

Maybe they are working in the area on a short term assignment, or maybe they are living a more nomadic lifestyle, which is more prevalent post pandemic. 

Or they might be looking to decide if they’d like to move to the area and want to have a chance to immerse themselves into the community to decide if it’s the right move for them. 

 

What Short-Term Rentals Offer Now

As a potential property owner, tapping into some of the examples below can elevate your rental’s appeal and profitability.

 

Full Service Hospitality 

There are many ways that you can elevate guest experience through full service hospitality.

  • Regular maid service – Could you provide an additional clean during their stay?
  • Curated guest experiences – How can you partner with local establishments to provide an elevated experience for your guest? 
  • Special touches – How could you provide a way for your guest to feel special while they are in house?

 

Personalization 

There are tons of ways to make your short term rental property feel personal!

 

The ability to bring their furry friends along 

The Great Smoky Mountains is a sanctuary for families, couples, and adventure seekers. For many of these visitors, a vacation isn’t complete without their furry friends. 

Offering a pet-friendly rental not only widens your target audience but also adds an emotional touch to your property – it signifies that you care about the entire family. 

After all, pets are family too!

 

Adoption of technology 

By adopting technology you can make your processes easier and simpler – and who does love a seamless experience?

  • In what ways could you make your check in/out process simpler?
  • In what ways might you use technology to ensure your home stays in tip top shape?
  • In what ways might you use technology to ensure your rental is the most comfortable it could be? 

 

Advantages of Short-Term Rentals

Beyond the financial benefits, short-term rentals offer a sense of ownership and creativity that traditional investments may lack. 

In a competitive rental landscape highlighting your properties unique features is an excellent way to stand out and create a sense of belonging for guests who are seeking a local experience. 

The ability to create a personalized and memorable stay for guests sets short-term rentals apart!

 

As the landscape of vacation rentals continues to shift, property owners and managers who embrace innovation have an advantage over traditional hotel stays. 

Set your short term rental property apart by curating an experience – whether that’s in-home personalization, policies that allow for a vast number of situations (pets and extended stays to name a few), processes that are convenient, or local experiences. 

 

February 2024 Sevier County Real Estate Market Statistics

Average price saw a slight bump to $689,422 during February, compared to January at $685,047.

Days on market saw a sizeable reduction to 64 days on the market in February, compared to January at 84 days on the market.

Price per square foot saw a bit of a bump during February at $373, compared to $361 during January.

 

Interesting to note, during February 2 of the 3 condos sold within less than 10 days. Both of these are located on the Parkway, one in Pigeon Forge and one in Gatlinburg.

 

The average price for land/lots during February was $102,283, which is a bit lower than we saw during February of last year at $120,758.

Lots that sold in February spent an average of 92 days on the market, which is a pretty large reduction compared to January at 146 days on the market.

A Shift in Seasons: Potential Opportunities as Easter Arrives Early in 2024

In January, various factors dampened the demand for short-term rentals across the United States. 

 

A notably cold spell, characterized as an “Arctic air mass” by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, ushered in record low temperatures nationwide,while we endured a relatively severe flu, COVID, and RSV season

 

Which led to total booked nights seeing minimal growth at just 1.3% compared to the same period last year, failing to reach the pre-pandemic occupancy levels witnessed in late 2023.

 

Historically, February stands as the lowest month for listings. This year saw a significant drop of 73,000 listings, a departure from the typical January figures, however this decline aligns with the anticipated reduction characteristic of February. 

 

AirDNA reports Key U.S. STR Performance Metrics for January 2024

  • Revenue per available room (RevPAR) declined 6.6% year-over-year (YOY) to $133.80
  • Available listings were 1.54 million, up 10.5% YOY
  • Total demand (nights) rose 1.3% YOY
  • Occupancy was 7.0% lower YOY at 43.2%
  • Average daily rates (ADRs) increased 0.5% YOY to $309.63
  • Nights booked decreased 2.7% YOY

 

“January produced the first negative YOY change in new bookings (-2.7%) in 21 months. Some of this can be attributed to the strong performance in bookings in January 2023, which stands as the highest monthly bookings recorded in the last 34 months. On the other hand, the growth in demand for January was just 1.3%, which is considerably lower than December’s 4.1% or November’s 7.4% growth rate.”

 

 

What’s that mean for the Gatlinburg/Pigeon Forge area?

 

Our area was one of the 25 markets that saw an increase in demand. 

“Even though demand saw a downturn, the growth in average daily rate (ADR), or the average rental income per paid occupied room in a given period, improved in January compared to December. “

 

This year Easter falls in March, instead of April, so we may see an early influx of Spring Breakers. 

 

The tourism board provides the school breaks for the surrounding areas! 

The majority of the school systems listed on this document will be out during the weeks of 3/25 and 4/1. 

You can use this to see if your short term rental is seeing a shift based on the shift in holidays. 


Sevier County, Tennessee Real Estate Market Report for January 2024

Homes in Sevier County, Tennessee

Average price saw the highest price saw a large drop from $794,087 in December 2023 to $685,047 in January 2024, which is close

Days on market 82 days in January 2024, which is on the higher end of the range that we saw during 2023 of 55 days to 83 days. 

Price per square foot saw a decrease to $361 from $378 in December 2023. 

Land in Sevier County, Tennessee

The average price for land/lots in January 2024 was $266,503 which was a sizable increase from January 2023 at $158,542.

Lots that sold in January 2024 spend an average of 146 days on the market, which was an 11% increase over days on market in January 2023 at 132 days. 

The Smoky Mountains STR Market: Opportunities in 2024

The Smoky Mountains Short term rental Market Opportunities in 2024

As we move into 2024, let’s take a peek at national trends that might shape the short term rental market.

Things like interest rates, inflation, and travel trends. 

 

Macroeconomic Factors Influencing the STR Market

 

Inman.com provides an interesting take on  2023’s occupancy rates.

“In 2023, the short-term rental space was defined by its ups and downs, with the supply of available nights increasing 12.6 percent year over year, compared to a more subdued 6.5 percent annual growth in demand, according to AirDNA’s 2023 U.S. Market Review.

Last year also marked the end of the incredibly high occupancy rates hosts and investors have enjoyed since 2021. Occupancy dipped 5.8 percent year over year to 49.9 percent —  below pre-pandemic levels — as supply increased considerably. The increase in supply also brought average daily rates down 2.4 percent to $311.09.”

 

We can’t overlook that the Federal Reserve’s rate adjustments impacted both property prices and how much people spent on vacations, which had an impact on occupancy rates. 

While travel trends might have more folks opting for staycations, or exploring new areas. 

 

The Smoky Mountains Market: A Case Study in Resilience

The Smoky Mountains have always been a gem for vacation rentals, and 2023 was no exception. 

Despite the economic ups and downs, this region proved resilient. Its natural beauty and diversity of attractions kept it high on the list for travelers! 

This stability is key for investors. It means that, even in uncertain times, the Smoky Mountains remain a solid bet. 

The Great Smoky Mountains National Park has seen over 10 Million visitors each year since 2015. There has been a 37% increase in visitation over the last decade.

 

Tennessee ranks 11th in the nation for travel spending, the highest rank ever and the fastest-growing state in the top 40 since 2018.”

 

Smoky Mountains STR Market: Opportunities in 2024

As 2024 unfolds, the vacation rental market is gearing up for what looks like an eventful year. 

“Based on early data, 2024 is already looking to be a promising year for vacation rentals. Demand in January is 8 percent higher than it was at the same point in 2022, and demand for the succeeding months is already between 13 and 21 percent higher for every month through June, reflecting the improved economic outlook for 2024 versus the start of 2023 when fears of a recession hung over many consumers.”

 

The general economic outlook for 2024 seems more stable and positive compared to the start of 2023. This shift plays a crucial role in shaping consumer confidence and travel spending. With more people likely to plan vacations and trips, popular destinations like the Smoky Mountains stand to benefit significantly.

 

The Smoky Mountains region stands out as a promising area for investment in 2024. With its proven track record of resilience and its ongoing appeal to tourists, the area is equipped to capitalize on the positive trends forecasted for 2024.

 

Navigating the Shifts: Predictions for 2024 Housing Marketing

2023 has been a trying time in the housing market. In this post, we’ll explore the things that shaped the housing market in 2023 and take a look at the forecasts for the real estate market in 2024. 

 

Factors Behind the 2023 Housing Market Slowdown

The real estate market in 2023 was affected by rising home prices, increased mortgage rates, and low inventory. 

The spike in mortgage rates, which surged beyond 8% for the first time in over two decades, became a barrier for many potential homebuyers. 

This increase not only diminished buying power but also sidelined a portion of the market.

The Federal Reserve’s response to inflation involved a hike in interest rates which further increased the market’s slowdown.

New listings dropped to their lowest level on record – just 5.4 million new listings in 2023, the lowest level on record and a massive 16.4% drop from 2022. 

“The unusual combination of low supply and low demand caused home prices to remain elevated throughout the year, which was bad news for pretty much everyone,” laments Daryl Fairweather, Redfin Senior Chief Economist. “The market was extraordinary; it felt hot, even though very few homes changed hands.”

 

Housing Inventory and Price Trends in 2023

Despite the overall market slowdown, the prices of homes continued on an upward trajectory. This was primarily fueled by the shortage of inventory, a challenge that has been lingering for years.

The supply of homes remained significantly below the levels considered healthy for a balanced market. 

Reports indicated that the housing inventory was about a two-and-a-half-month supply, starkly lower than the ideal six-month supply. 

This scarcity of available homes for sale not only limited options for buyers but also kept the market tilted in favor of sellers. 

 

Predictions for the Housing Market in 2024

The housing market is poised for a period of gradual recovery and adjustment. 

Industry experts predict a few key trends that could shape the real estate landscape in the coming year:

  • Mortgage Rates: After reaching two-decade highs in 2023, mortgage rates are expected to start declining, providing some relief to potential homebuyers. While the rates are anticipated to ease, they are likely to remain within the 6% to 7% range, not low enough to significantly boost the inventory of existing homes​​.
  • Housing Inventory: The inventory of homes for sale is forecasted to see a modest increase. This is partly due to more sellers expected to enter the market, having delayed selling in the past two years. A 30% increase in housing inventory is anticipated, which could help balance the demand-supply dynamics to some extent.
  • Home Prices: Despite the challenges, house prices are projected to continue their upward trend, albeit at a slower rate compared to 2023. The prediction is a national increase of around 2.7% in home prices for 2024​​.
  • Market Recovery: Certain U.S. markets are expected to experience a faster recovery in home sales. This recovery is likely to be influenced by the regional economic conditions and the specific characteristics of local housing markets

“The demand for housing will recover from falling mortgage rates and rising income,” Yun said. “In addition, housing inventory is expected to rise by around 30% as more sellers begin to list after delaying selling over the past two years.”

 

In summary, while the housing market in 2024 may not witness a dramatic turnaround, the expected easing of mortgage rates and a slight improvement in inventory levels hint at a more favorable environment for both buyers and sellers. This anticipated shift could mark the beginning of a new phase in the housing market. While the full impact of these changes remains to be seen, they signal a move towards greater stability and opportunity in the real estate sector.

 

2023 Sevier County Real Estate Market Statistics

Below you will find year end market statistics that compare 2023 to 2022.

 

 

This week we’ll take a look at 2023 year end real estate market statistics for Sevier County, TN

Average Price per Month

Average Days on Market

Average reporting income

 

 

We’ve segmented Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge by property type, condo and single family home, and provided average price, average price per square foot, and average days on market for each.

 

Gatlinburg – Condos

Average price ranged from $240,860 to $446,250.

Average price per square foot ranged from $314 to $414.

Average days on market ranged from 57 to 96.

 

Gatlinburg – Single Family Home

Average price ranged from $495,071 to $1,710,000.

Average price per square foot ranged from $305 to $441.

Average days on market ranged from 50 to 108.

 

Pigeon Forge – Condos

Average price ranged from $317,625 to $424,500.

Average price per square foot ranged from $310 to $408.

Average days on market ranged from 21 to 52.

 

Pigeon Forge – Single Family Homes

Average price ranged from $428,981 to $1,858,901.

Average price per square foot ranged from $317 to $443.

Average days on market ranged from 2 to 105.

December 2023 Sevier County Real Estate Market Update

Homes in Sevier County, Tennessee

Average price saw the highest price we’ve seen all year at $794,087. Days on market held steady at 6571days during the month of December, falling within the range we’ve seen throughout the year from 55 days to 83 days.

Price per square foot saw an decrease to $378. Still landing within the range of $358.72 to $401.65 that we’ve seen this year.

 

 

Land in Sevier County, Tennessee

The average price for land/lots saw an increase to $128,599, which is within the range we’ve seen for most of the year between $73,123 – $161,225, except for the outlier we saw in June at $243,763.

Lots that sold in December spent 267 days on the market. We’re experienced a large range of days on market this year, from 85-292 days.