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For investors motivated by the old school of thinking, long-term rentals are the ticket to wealth—accumulated however incrementally, and often over a stretch of years.

According to Avery Carl, there’s an alternative—an accessible approach with larger, lucrative returns for the taking.

“Investing in Airbnb properties is really a game changer and a life changer for a lot of people,” Carl explains. “With the older school of investing—buying a long-term rental—if you have $25K, you might be making $500 a month. If you take that $25K and buy a short-term, you’re looking at $1,500-$2,000 a month. That’s an entire second income.”

Affiliated with eXp Realty, Carl is the leader of The Short Term Shop, focused on helping investors navigate the new school of thought, which is self-managed and short-term. As leader of the team, Carl draws from her expertise and firsthand insights—she and her husband invest in and manage properties—connecting investors with listings and her network of professionals, from HVAC to landscapers.

“You can 100 percent do this yourself,” she says. “I help my clients get over the hump of thinking the old way, which is ‘I have to use a property manager.'”

Active in the Great Smoky Mountains of Tennessee, as well as the Florida Panhandle, Carl is driven to succeed. She closed $25 million her first year, and in 2018, Greater Nashville Realtors® named her Rookie of the Year.

Now, with two buyer’s agents and a transaction coordinator, she’s gearing up for growth, with additional markets in her sightline. Here, she discusses her journey, and the changes in the investment market.

Suzanne De Vita: How did you get involved in real estate, and your niche, specifically?
Avery Carl: I was working in the music business in Nashville. My husband and I started investing in real estate buying rental properties in 2016, and once we decided we were going to keep going with that—and it wasn’t just going to be one or two properties—I went ahead and got my license so that I could do our own deals. We were investing in Nashville, and prices got really high, so we started buying Airbnb-able cabins in the Smoky Mountains. I did over 100 deals last year on properties that can be on Airbnb, and I’m on track to hit 150 this year.

SD: In the age of Airbnb, how are you helping investors leverage their opportunities?
AC: Most agents in markets with Airbnb properties either work for a local or national property manager, or are closely tied in and have a partnership with one. I’m the opposite. There are a few [property management companies] that I would recommend, but you can 100 percent do this yourself. With a phone, you can do it from anywhere. I help my clients get over the hump of thinking the old way, which is “I have to use a property manager.” I’ve got the network of people that they need—cleaners, handymen, HVAC guys—so that they can make those calls, handle their own bookings on the major booking platforms, etc.

SD: You’ve built your business on referrals. How are you promoting your team?
AC: Up until very recently, all of my business has been referral-based. Now that I’m ramping up to other markets, I’m having to [market my team more]. I really am pushing the anti-property manager, disruption of the old way of doing vacation rentals vibe. I’m active on social media—Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, etc. Investing in vacation rentals, we’re still in the very early adopter phase. All of the old-school investors that have been investing in real estate for decades, they’re not really interested in this…it’s almost a millennial version of real estate investing. I would say quite a few of my clients are millennials, and I push that with my branding, too.

SD: You’re in growth mode. What are your goals for your team this year?
AC: I would like to grow [our] Smoky Mountains [presence] by another 30 percent over the next year, if I can. I would like to get at least 20 closings for my Panama City agent by the end of the year, and then I’d like to move into one more market by the end of the year—somewhere where the most traffic is, where the best place to invest is. As of right now, we’re still very much in the small growth, new team phase.

Suzanne De Vita is RISMedia’s online news editor. Email her your real estate news ideas at sdevita@rismedia.com.