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Top reasons to invest in Marco Island real estate


Florida Sunrise

Marco Island is a sun-drenched jewel offering some of the best beach destinations in Florida. Together with Naples and the Everglades, this barrier island is a virtual tourist magnet that has brought in more than a quarter of a million visitors from within and outside the Sunshine State and earnings of almost $350 million in February 2023 alone. 

Its universal appeal among tourists is already solid evidence that investing in real estate in Marco Island is a great idea. Let’s get acquainted with Marco Island more, as well as the reasons why exploring its investment potential matters and the ways how you can best make your money grow here. 


Marco Island

Located on the southwestern part of Florida’s Gulf Coast, Marco Island is a medium-sized coastal city with approximately 16,000 residents. It’s the largest of the islands that comprise Florida’s Ten Thousand Islands.

Spanning a mere 24 square miles and smaller than Naples, its neighbor to the north, Marco Island still offers a lot of pleasant surprises to visitors and locals alike.

Marco Island’s beaches are renowned for their utter beauty, as well as the many outdoor activities one could engage in here, from picking up the loveliest shells by the shore to fishing, birdwatching, and exploring the natural wonder of the mangrove-covered areas. 

Make no mistake, though: Marco Island isn’t just all about coastal beauty. It also has its share of modern conveniences, including oceanfront hotels, world-class restaurants, golf courses, marinas, and a downtown area with retail options from outfitters to shopping malls. It is, after all, the most developed island in the Ten Thousand Islands region. That’s why both tourists and locals are never too far from creature comforts as they have everything they need on Marco Island.


Let’s check all the things that make Marco Island, FL one of Southwest Florida’s top-ranking tourist attractions. 

The beaches and everything that comes with them 

With a shoreline that extends from the Gulf of Mexico to Cape Romano, one cannot pass the opportunity of enjoying Marco Island’s stunning beaches. Some of the beaches you shouldn’t miss are:

  • TIGERTAIL BEACH. This top-rated beach destination is ideal for coastal relaxation and light outdoor activities such as shell collecting and birdwatching. There’s also a kiosk where you can rent kayaks and canoes to explore the saltwater lagoon nearby.
  • SAND DOLLAR ISLAND/SPIT. Who would’ve thought that this idyllic patch of white coastline was actually born from natural disasters? From the 70s to the 90s, this was a sandbar completely surrounded by water and literally covered in sand dollars; hence, its name. But with visiting hurricanes and erosion, sand accumulated between the island and the mainland, virtually creating a natural bridge between the two. Today, it’s called Sand Dollar Spit and remains a favorite tourist attraction. Check it out on Google Maps (use the satellite layer) with the keyword, “Big Marco Pass”. 
  • SOUTH MARCO BEACH ACCESS. If you’re looking for something a little more private, visit South Marco Beach Access – an area less frequented by tourists and perhaps the purest among the Marco Island beaches. Lined with stunning Sabal palms and luxury hotels, this place will give you that quintessential Florida vibe. You might catch a glimpse of manatees, dolphins, and different shorebird species if you get lucky.
  • KEEWAYDIN ISLAND. If you want to try something different, consider heading out to this 8-mile-long island. It’s a remote shore accessible only via ferry service. Bring the canine members of your family when you come to visit – the beach here is pet-friendly!

The bounty of nature

Marco Island is not just famous for its beaches – it’s also known for its green spaces and its proximity to the Everglades, described as the largest subtropical wilderness in the whole country. After exploring the island’s beaches, these nature parks are worth checking out. 

  • BRIGGS BOARDWALK AND NATURE CENTER. This nature center features indoor and outdoor exhibits that allow you to take a closer look at Southwest Florida’s diverse ecosystem. One of its main attractions is the half-mile-long boardwalk trail that passes through five distinct habitats and preserved island mangroves. The primary trail loops through scenic vistas and Florida wildlife, making it a main stop for tourists and hikers. The nature center also offers electric boat tours where you can have a fun and informative 45-minute cruise along the beautiful Gordon River.
  • ROOKERY BAY NATIONAL ESTUARINE RESEARCH RESERVE. This reserve features 110,000 acres of mangrove forest and protected waters. You can kayak through the mangrove tunnels or explore the area aboard a powered skiff. Since the area is huge, it’s best to take a guided tour so you can make the most out of your visit.
  • EVERGLADES NATIONAL PARK. Don’t miss the opportunity to witness up close the unique flora and fauna that comprise the thriving ecosystem of this official World Heritage Site. Park management has available guided tours for visitors, as well as educational programs for students going on field trips to the area. 

Delightful dinners with a view 

Marco Island is home to several luxury resorts and hotels with in-house restaurants for the full Marco Island foodie experience, you must try their homegrown seafood dives, dining spots, and watering holes. Looking for the best grouper sandwich in the area? Head on to Leebe Fish. For fresh seafood and du jour menu options with live blues music playing in the background, visit the east side of the island and look for the Little Bar Restaurant.

Other local restaurants to try include:


Marco High View

The overall housing market climate

Latest (February 2023) figures from Marco Island’s official Realtor page,, show a total of 61 properties (homes, condos, and lots) sold. This is 27% lower than the previous year’s 84 properties. Among the three property types, single-family homes got the most attention among buyers with 29 units getting sold at a median price of $1.6 million. It also took longer for homes to stay on the market before getting sold this February, averaging 50 days from last year’s 47 days. All these reveal relatively slower market activity but still-attractive home prices.’s take on the real estate market climate of Marco Island doesn’t stray far from figures as it also showed a median selling price going past the $1-million benchmark and a longer period of staying in the market before getting bought year-on-year. However, Marco Island remains a strong seller’s market where multiple offers and bidding wars are still to be expected. The larger estates here can fetch a price of $16 million.

The most popular architectural styles among real estate on Marco Island are largely influenced by their waterfront location, so all of them sport a breezy beach vibe. These styles are:

  • Coastal Contemporary. Airy and minimalist, this contemporary design is a trend among homeowners here. 
  • Southern Farmhouse. Employs wooden elements in its design for a rustic vibe but with a Southern touch, using columns and shutters.
  • West Indies. The perfect home design for island living as this is commonly found among homes in Barbados and the Cayman Islands.

The Marco Island rental market

Mid-March data from states that two-bedroom units are the most popular rentals in the area, with an average rent price of $4,450 – up by 41% year-on-year. You can still find affordable options here, the cheapest of which is a one-bedroom rental priced at less than $2,000. Meanwhile, a four-bedroom waterfront rental that comes complete with a swimming pool, lanai, and private dock is the most expensive, priced at $25,000.  

Note also that you stand to earn more from renting your property overnight but this will also mean having to keep up with the maintenance and cleaning requirements due to the fast turnover of tenants – a feat that is possible if you have a property manager seeing to the premises. A quick search on Airbnb shows that Marco Island properties for rent are listed at around $400/night on average. This can go lower or higher depending on your property’s amenities, as well as its proximity to the beach and other places for recreation. 


By virtue of its fantastic location and geography, real estate in Marco Island tends to be among the most expensive in the state. However, with the primary industry here being tourism, a good number of these properties have been developed to accommodate the massive surge of visitors. To illustrate, the most popular types of accommodations for tourists are vacation rentals – usually single-family homes that are rented out – followed by personal condos or second homes used during peak travel seasons as rentals. Given that investing in these types will be more substantial than purchasing a regular single-family home, the rewards that come and the hefty returns on your investment, in the long run, are worth the more nuanced preparation.

Let’s look at the reasons why you should choose a Marco Island property for your next real estate investment.

  1. Marco Island is seeing a steady increase in demand for vacation rentals.

    Thousands of people from all over the country and beyond head over to Marco Island and its neighbors, Naples and the Everglades, to enjoy a luxurious vacation. February 2023 data from Florida’s Convention & Visitors Bureau shows a year-to-date total of 519,900 tourists who came to these three areas.

    Tourism has become stronger than ever before, thanks to remote and hybrid work options and people’s newfound appreciation for travel since the pandemic – so much so that despite the looming economic downturn, 31% of consistent international travelers surveyed say they are willing to spend more on travel this year than they did in 2022.

    Marco Island is the perfect place for people looking for both relaxation and experiential travel — which is why it has become a hotspot for vacationers from all over the world. This presents a great real estate investment opportunity in the form of vacation rentals. This is pointed out by figures in the Convention & Visitors Bureau February 2023 report which recorded an average daily lodging rate of $406.22 for the Naples-Marco Island-Everglades trifecta – an increase from the previous month’s $335.50.

  2. Marco Island is a desirable place to settle down or to own a family vacation home.

    Whether you’re here to live or invest, Marco Island is the perfect spot for your real estate goals. The beach setting and the laid-back vibe offer a contrast to the breakneck pace of city life and the gripping cold in other states. Plus, the island has its own share of top-rated schools.

    But Marco Island doesn’t stop with that. There are opportunities for recreation and socialization, given the presence of luxury resorts, famous hotels, high-end shops, great dining options, and world-class golf courses. The good news is that even with these modern community amenities, Marco Island’s local government has policies in place that ensure the protection of the community’s way of life and the island’s natural beauty.

    The strong demand for homes for sale in Marco Island continues despite talks of the real estate market going on a cooling-off period, so it’s a wise move to consult a dependable local Realtor with an excellent command of the market to help you make a bid and secure your investment as early as you can.

  3. Marco Island’s homes are mostly waterfront properties – that’s prime real estate! 

    Real estate prices go higher as you get closer to the beach. And if you have a beachfront property, you can easily max out the price, given that the property is in pristine condition. After all, who doesn’t love being in the front seat of Marco Island’s beautiful beaches and breathtaking sunsets?


House investmen

Any kind of investment is worthwhile especially if there’s a high chance of handsome returns. This is the kind of opportunity that Marco Island presents. So, let’s take a look at some effective and expert-recommended ways for letting your Marco Island real estate investment grow.

Buy and hold

In this method, an investor buys a property and holds it as a long-term investment instead of “flipping” it and immediately selling it to a new buyer. To put it simply, you buy a home and rent it out.

Simply buying a property and then holding on to it indefinitely is still a buy-and-hold investment. The property’s value increases over time and you also get to enjoy a stable monthly cash flow from the rental income.

Once the property’s value exceeds the money you invested into it, you can either sell it for a profit or keep generating passive income by renting it out.

Buy, Rehab, Rent, Refinance, Repeat (BRRRR)

This approach involves renovating a distressed property, renting it out, and then obtaining a cash-out refinance from it to fund other rental property investments.

Done correctly, this method can provide passive income, a revolving method for purchasing and owning rental property, and enhancing your investment portfolio. The BRRRR method works through the following steps:

  • BUY. Purchase a property that’s priced lower than the average home prices.
  • REHAB. Since this is a cheap purchase, homes you can buy using the BRRRR method are usually distressed properties that require extensive work to make them ready for renters.
  • RENT out the property at the right rental price.
  • REFINANCE. Convert your equity into cash by doing a cash-out refinance on the property. You take out a bigger mortgage, and this cash will be used to complete the final step.
  • REPEAT. Use the funds from your cash-out refinance to buy another distressed property, rehab it, rent it out, and refinance that property.

Fix and flip

This method refers to purchasing properties at a lower price – usually ones that need repairs or renovations – fixing them up, and then selling them quickly for a profit. 

For most real estate lenders, selling a fix-and-flip property “quickly” means within 12 months or less. However, if selling the property takes more than 12 months, don’t worry. Many real estate lenders can still accommodate projects that require a longer loan term.

To be successful in using the fix-and-flip method, you need to check the amount of time it takes for properties to sell in the area. On average, homes in Marco Island remain for less than two months on the market before getting sold, which is well within the 12-month time frame. The key here is to liquidate your rehabbed house before you’re required to shell out money to maintain it.


Marco Island’s natural beauty and tropical climate are just some of the reasons why people would choose to stay and relocate here in a heartbeat. While these can definitely add to your property’s marketability and earning potential, there are still a lot of factors at play that will determine your success in investing in a Marco Island real estate property.

Here are some things to consider when buying your next investment home in Marco Island.

  • Safe and convenient location. Choose a property located in an area with easy access to essentials such as reputable schools, transportation, as well as shopping and dining establishments. It should also be in a safe neighborhood with a low crime rate and minimal risk of accidents and hazards.
  • Proximity to local attractions. In February 2023, Naples, Marco Island, and the Everglades recorded a total of 262,600 visitors. This area of the Sunshine State attracts thousands of tourists every month, so even though you’ll have to invest a tidy sum at first, it’s best to choose houses or rental units near local attractions as well as areas for rest and recreation.
  • Overall condition of the property. The property should be in good working condition and should have great curb appeal, requiring little to no repairs and renovation as much as possible. Otherwise, you’ll have to spend money on costly improvements. Shelling out more money means you might have to wait longer before you can get a return on your investment.
  • House type. Single-family homes remain the most popular vacation rental accommodation type for tourists. Also, if you want your guests to take in the beauty of Marco Island even from inside the house, a multi-story one will give them a better vantage point for getting a panoramic view of the island. Moreover, an open floor concept will help not only with mobility within the house but also for allowing better ventilation, given the humidity Florida’s climate is known for.


Starting your real estate investment journey in Marco Island can be daunting. But with a reliable team like The Lanners Group, you work with experts who will help you find the investment property that fits your budget and financial goals.

Jack Lanners, our leader, has more than 22 years of experience in the industry. He is also a licensed and insured property manager. So when you work with us, you don’t only have an agent who’ll help you find the perfect home to suit your needs; you also have a manager who’ll help you take care of your rental property and maximize returns on your investment.

Contact us today at 239.253.5446 or send us an email here to schedule a consultation.

Let’s work together to turn your real estate investment goals into reality. We can’t wait to serve you!

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