The best places to get into the real estate game in the US


You’re interested in real estate. Here’s the short version: it’s easy to make a bit of money buying and renting or even buying and selling property, but if you’re going to make it worthwhile compared to other forms of investment, you’re going to have to put in some work. If you want to get rich through it, you’re going to have to work hard, and you’re going to have to be smart. Still reading? Good. Then check out this guide to great investment locations because there are real opportunities out there – you just have to be ready to take them.

Long-term investing

Before we begin, you should think about why you’re investing. Are you hoping to flip a home quickly to make a profit? Are you looking for a place where you can eventually live – for instance, when you retire? Or are you in it for the long haul? Playing a long game is the surest way to make serious money in real estate, but it requires patience and a good understanding of risk. You’ll usually need two or three properties to generate an income from rental. The trick is to balance your finances so that you can take out loans to buy more. For long-term investing or house flipping, you’ll be looking for properties with low entry value that you can fix up over time.

Great places to invest

When you’re looking for investment properties, you need to balance the up-front cost against the amount of work that a property needs to retain or grow its value, house price trends in the neighborhood, local rental values, and the nature of the rental market. The following cities offer great markets for investors in different ways:

Detroit – given the recent history of this city, you won’t be surprised to learn that prices are very low, but things are changing, with employment increasing and more and more people looking to rent. Many properties are still in great shape for the asking price. You won’t get a high rental value from them yet, but in a few years’ time, you should be able to do well.

Dallas – buying property in this city isn’t cheap, but this means that there’s serious demand for rental properties, and it’s growing fast. With the city’s economy in great shape, rental values are high, and there’s serious money to be made here – and if you eventually decide to sell, you’ll have no trouble securing a profit.

Oakland – struggling to shake a bad reputation that it no longer deserves, this city still has low house prices for the region, but its location right next to San Francisco means that there’s a constant demand for rental properties. A high number of young professionals in the area means that there’s a steady supply of reliable tenants with good incomes.

Seattle – increasingly seen as one of America’s most desirable places to live, Seattle is attracting a flood of young families looking for rental homes to stay in for the medium to long term. Entry prices are variable, but it’s comparatively easy to secure steady returns, which, in turn, can make your real estate business more attractive to lenders.

Orlando – as previously unpopular areas of the city start to see serious improvement, this is becoming a great place to invest. There are two main ways to make money – through long-term lets to young families or through very short-term lets to tourists, an approach that requires more effort but can be very lucrative.

Real estate success stories

Proving that anybody can make it in real estate with the right attitude, Ayo Haynes started out with no property-specific training and only a modest investment fund but has made her way right to the top of the business, largely thanks to having an eye for low-priced properties with significant growth potential. Initially working as assistant to a leading broker, she focused on learning her patch of New York really well, and she’s now a top earner.

Trained in Germany and now based in Florida, Axel Preuss-Kuhne rose to real estate success by recognizing the opportunity inherent in the 2010 housing market crash and founding a company that was able to buy up cheap properties. He has since developed a computer-based analytical approach that has enabled him to maintain his edge in a changing market, investing on a large scale and fixing up properties.

Success stories such as these prove that what counts in the real estate market is insight, determination, and a good head for numbers. If you have those things going for you, a future in real estate could well be worth considering.


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