With 32 miles of sandy, sun-kissed shoreline, Galveston is a beachy and booming Texas vacation destination. Located just 50 miles from Houston, this charming Southern retreat has historic architecture, loads of outdoor activities, and over 80 festivals annually — drawing in more than 6.5 million visitors last year.
The island’s coastal climate and wide array of family-friendly fun makes it a location worth returning to — which is also why buying a vacation rental property in Galveston is such a hot topic and major opportunity for investors.
To help you understand the value of a Galveston investment property, we created a free, downloadable vacation rental market analysis. Inside you’ll find:
The findings in this analysis are based on Evolve’s Galveston market averages in the last year and provide a general baseline for performance potential. They’re designed to help inform smart buying decisions when investing in the Galveston area.
From deep sea fishing and festival-hopping to relaxing on white sand beaches and shopping downtown, Galveston has a little something for everyone. And though the island does have high and low seasons, the area’s annual temperatures (ranging from the low 60s to the high 80s) keep many properties booked all year long.
The first notable influx of tourists happens in March and April from spring breakers. The island’s true peak season, though, is in the summer — when families take school’s-out vacations and groups of travelers escape for sunny holiday weekends. Demand starts to decline come fall, but snowbirds still migrate south for the winter to warm up in Galveston.
The median home price here currently hovers around $375,000 and has been on a steady increase over the past few years. Though the area continues to grow in popularity, our Real Estate Services (RES) team notes it’s still much more affordable than other coastal vacation destinations (like Northeast or West Coast alternatives). And the Galveston market includes everything from quaint one-bedroom bungalows to sprawling five-bedroom beachfront homes, so potential buyers have a wide range of options.
With high demand for vacation rentals in Galveston and the chance to earn repeat bookings from eager travelers, let’s look a bit more closely at what can make buying vacation rental property in Galveston a successful investment.
Since family reunions and large-group getaways are popular in Galveston, five-bedroom homes bring in the most annual income and see the most nights booked throughout the year. They make up the smallest percentage of available inventory in the area, though — meaning investors might have a trickier time locking one down.
Luckily, good things also come in small packages. One-bedroom properties in Galveston rank second highest for total nights booked and can be much easier to find when you’re ready to buy. They offer the perfect respite for sun-seeking couples, and can get investors in the vacation rental game at lower upfront costs.
For a happy medium, three-bedroom homes also see solid occupancy, strong daily rates, and often accommodate anywhere from six to twelve guests. They too make up a significant portion of available rentals — and Evolve’s top performer in Galveston happens to be a three-bedroom property.
To truly capitalize on a Galveston investment property, our RES team says it’s all about location.
Whether or not the property is beachfront (or offers ocean views) should be top of mind for buyers, since the water is a big draw for travelers. Look for homes along the shoreline or walking distance to the sand (many of which also happen to be larger homes with higher bedroom and bath counts).
Keep proximity to kid-friendly hotspots in mind, too — think Galveston Island Historic Pleasure Pier, Moody Gardens, and Schlitterbahn Waterpark — to make family activities even more accessible to your guests.
With so many families and beachgoers coming to Galveston, it’s important for your property to suit all of their needs. Provide beach supplies like chairs, umbrellas, and family-size towels, and include kid-friendly amenities like boogie boards, shovels, and pails.
Updated outdoor living spaces are also a huge selling point in the area — even more so if your home has a beachfront view. Properties with decks, outdoor pools, gas grills, and hot tubs are heavily-searched by Galveston travelers, meaning any and all of them can help you grab more bookings at higher daily rates.
And while Galveston vacationers love to spend time in the salty air, indoor comfort is also key for handling the heat. Air conditioning is non-negotiable for many groups visiting Galveston, and amenities like an entertainment system or game room can make relaxation time extra chill for families.
Of course, you don’t want to forget about the little things, either. Thoughtful touches like complimentary refreshments or a welcome book outlining the best things to do in Galveston can all help owners collect five-star reviews and, in turn, attract more bookings.
With a booming real estate market and an increasing number of annual visitors, the city of Galveston is not only a growing hub for tourism, but also an incredible opportunity for a vacation rental investment.
For a more in-depth look at the potential of a Galveston investment property, download our free Galveston Vacation Rental Market Analysis today. Inside you’ll find:
With the right intel on your side, buying vacation rental property in Galveston can feel like a stroll down the beach. Use our report to make waves in this market with informed, income-driving investment decisions.