season that Rented Inc. and Weiss Analytics named the top vacation rental market in the U.S. based on the highest return on investment. Our market along the Florida Emerald Coast is so unique because the majority of our resort inventory is short-term rental focused (i.e., one- to seven-night stays) and has a consistent peak season between Memorial Day and Labor Day, as well as an exceptional shoulder season that allows these properties to gen- erate income almost year-round. In closing, always take your time when identifying the right mar- ket for your investment property. Once you have identified a property, conduct your due diligence, keep location/amenities at the fore, and partner with a respected, experi - enced management team and you are on your way to sourcing a top income-producing property in a vacation destination. •

to use the property for your personal use is also something to consider as time spent occupying the property cuts away at the income- producing potential of the property. LOCATIONANDAMENITIES My experience over the years has proven that renters are willing to pay a premium to be in a desirable area—in short, location is king. Rent - ers appreciate convenience, whether it is proximity to local attractions, shopping, or dining. Purchasing a property in a desirable area rich with built-in or nearby amenities tends to allow the investor to charge a higher price for the property, which means a greater return for the investor, even relative to the increased price paid to secure the property in the ideal location. Layout of the home is also very important. For example, even though many of the properties we sell are located on one of the most beautiful white sand beach -

es in the world, many of my clients visit during the hot summer months, making a large, private, resort-style pool a key amenity. Other sought-af- ter items include full ensuite bath - rooms for every bedroom allowing ample privacy and the ability to accommodate a family comfortably. PROFESSIONAL PROPERTY MANAGEMENT Finally, my last tip for sourcing a great vacation rental property is find - ing a well-established home that has already been thoroughly reviewed and managed by a professional man- agement firm. Having an excellent guest experience is of the utmost importance. Sourcing a property that already has great management in place allows for a prospective buy - er to step into immediate success with a company that has a proven process. For example, the Florida Panhandle offers a diverse array of inventory with an incredible rental

Jonathan Spears is founder of Spears Group with Scenic Sotheby’s International Realty and has developed an extensive knowledge of the

Northwest Florida real estate market. He has closed over $700 million in sales, and for the second consecutive year was named the youngest member of “The Thousand Top Real Estate Professionals,” as published in The Wall Street Journal, inking him in the top one-half of one percent of the more than 1.3 million REALTORS® nationwide by individual sales volume. Jonathan graduated from Florida State University at 19 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration.

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