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Glamping, Campsites, & The Insane RV Park Revenue

RV park investments are probably not the first thing you think of when somebody says “real estate investing.” You’re probably used to single-family homes, duplexes, apartments, or something that has to do with long-term, residential real estate. What if we told you there was a hidden niche in the real estate investing arena, one with less competition, sky-high revenues, and almost unlimited ways to cash flow.

Heather Blankenship has been in the short-term rental investing niche for more than a decade. It was much different back when she got started. On a coast-to-coast road trip, Heather had the idea to buy an RV park. She had no experience, no money, and knew nothing about hospitality operations. She was, quite surprisingly, able to find and buy a $3.2M RV park, which she’s now upgraded into a $15M property.

Don’t get her story wrong, this is not a “fake it till you make it” type scenario. Heather put in years’ worth of long days, longer nights, and enormous effort to make properties just like this one, finally profit. Now, with three kids and a portfolio worth over $30M, Heather has become one of the leading figures in creative short-term rental investing. If you’ve never thought about glamping, camping, or RV park investing, this episode will seriously pique your interest.

This is the BiggerPockets podcast, show 650.

When you’re first starting out and you bought a couple houses on, you put them on Airbnb, or you’ve done something on a small residential scale, you don’t totally grasp what commercial real estate means when it comes to zoning and permitting and regulations, and just how serious they are about all that stuff. You’ve got this mindset of like move forward. And instead of asking for permission, ask for forgiveness. And it really doesn’t work that way.
So when you’re looking into these properties, zoning and permitting is so freaking important. And doing your due diligence. You have to have an answer to that…

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