ORLANDO, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35) - Looking to make a little extra money this summer? New research out from the University of Central Florida's Rosen College of Hospitality Management shows you might want to consider using your home to get that cash.
Central Florida theme parks and other attractions draw millions of tourist every year. More and more of them are skipping hotels and buying or renting vacation homes.
Dr. Robertico Croes, Associate Dean of Administration & Finance and a professor at Rosen College, said the Orlando-area's smoking economy and the opening of Pandora – The World of Avatar at Walt Disney World Resort's Animal Kingdom park and Universal Orlando's Volcano Bay water park, means a sizzling hot summer.
The school's research shows that buyers are willing to pay an average of $269,000 for a vacation home with a location in close proximity to those new attractions.
"[It] follows a trend, a housing trend in the Central Florida area, that the median prices have been growing very fast lately," said Dr. Croes.
Lemontree Realty's Heather Unger said if you live in the attractions area and you're looking to sell your home, now might be the time.
"We've got the big influx of buyers coming in, and it's a perfect storm," she said. "I think it's something people really need to look at and to consider marketing toward those buyers as well."
Or you might be able to make good money renting your home, Unger added.
"If you're in an HOA community, you need to make sure that you're zoned for short-term rentals, and as long as you are, there are many great sites out there that help with renting it out."
Vacationers pump more than $100 billion into the Central Florida economy and you may have a way to get in on that cash.