Kansas City Investors/Locals - Need your Advice!

10 Replies

Hi BiggerPockets members! I’m new to the game and looking at Kansas City as a potential city to purchase property. There are numerous reasonably priced Single and Multi Family homes for under $100k in certain neighborhoods (i.e. Oak Park Northwest/Southwest, Palestine East/West and Oak Park East, Lykins, Manheim Park, Ruskin Heights etc etc).

In looking at a heat map of these neighborhoods, there’s a lot of crime. Since I’m not familiar with the city, I’m wondering how bad these areas are. Are they up in incoming? Are they being gentrified? Is anyone investing here or have any thoughts or advice? Are there any neighborhoods that you would avoid like the plague?

Just thinking out loud - I live in San Francisco. While SF is obviously an affluent City (and I’m in no a way comparing it to KC) - there is crime everywhere. That doesn’t mean people don’t live in these areas, walk around, and live normal existences. An unbelievable amount of gentrification has also happened within the last 8-10 years as well.

With that said, it’s hard to know what a neighborhood is like without living there so I’m hoping to gain some insight from investors or those who live in the Kansas City area. 

Thank you in advance!

So there is a Kansas City Zip Code list posted by @Chris Dawson somewhere here on BP.

The more urban core you go in Jackson County, the more crime, vacant lots and tenants with no money you are going to find. As you radiate out from the core it gets better.

So if the area is $50,000 and down at retail, urban urban core in Kansas City Missouri - east of Troost, south of the River, west of I435 and north of I435 (its a loop around the city)  This is mostly ALL RENTAL not a lot of owner occupants, lots of boarded up houses and lots of vacant lots (except for a few areas that have seen revitalization)

Retail area $50,000 to $100,000 it gets better:  Independence, Raytown, Grandview, Kansas City Missouri west of Troost, east of I435 or south of I435 - this is going to be bread and butter houses that we often see talked about here on BP, but there are going to be worse areas in this and better areas.

Retail area $100k and up - is going to be less cash flow, higher rents, better tenants - this is going to be Johnson County, Eastern Jackson County, some areas of Grandview and some areas of Kansas City Missouri on the fringes.

I can't speak to the north of the river, however, I but if you look at retail comps, it will be a good guideline.

Thanks @Kim Tucker that's very useful. I'm moving to KC in the next month or so and am also looking for places to invest which I've been using @Chris Dawson post to help.. which is this btw

Chris Dawson

Chris Dawson Licensed Broker from Kansas City, KS

posted over 1 year ago

58 votesWho voted?

One of the questions I get asked a lot by investors who want to invest in Kansas City is, "What zip codes are good to invest in?". Any seasoned investor will tell you that this depends on several factors such as: amount of money to invest, type of tenants, level of risk, and investment strategy.

In an effort to help those who are not familiar with Kansas City but are interested or looking into investing in Kansas City, I have put together a very general overview of the zip codes in and around Kansas City, MO. These are all on the Missouri side, not the Kansas side.

Keep in mind, this is a general overview meant to help guide those who are not familiar with Kansas City. There can be good investments in areas I have labeled bad and there could be bad investments in areas that I have labeled good.

Here is the list:

Highest risk, highest crime, highest turnover areas:

64130 – listed in 2009 as the “murder factory” of Kansas City - avoid

64129 - avoid

64128 - avoid

64127 - avoid

64126 – avoid

Historic NE areas:

64124 – both good and bad areas for renting

64123 – both good and bad areas for renting

KC Downtown:

64106 – mostly commercial & condos – great area for rentals and flips

64108 – mostly commercial & condos – great area for rentals and flips


64109 – both good and bad areas for rentals

64110 – both good and bad areas for rentals

Westport/Plaza/Waldo/Brookside area:

64111 – great area for rentals and flips

64112 – great area for rentals and flips

64113 – great area for rentals and flips

64114 – great area for rentals and flips

South KC/Grandview/Raytown area:

64030 – mostly good rental area

64134 – mostly good rental area

64136 – mostly good rental area

64139 – mostly good rental area

64138 – mostly good rental area

Lee’s summit Area:

64081 – great area for rentals and flips

64082 – great area for rentals and flips

Blue Springs Area:

64015 – good area for rentals and flips

64014 – good area for rentals and flips

Independence Area:

64052 – mostly bad rental area

64053 – mostly bad rental area

64055 – mostly good rental area

64050 – mostly good rental area

64056 – mostly good rental area

64057 – mostly good rental area

North of the River Areas:

64116 – mostly good rental area

64117 – mostly good rental area

64118 – good rental area

64119 – good rental area

64151 – great area for rentals and flips

64152 – great area for rentals and flips

64153 – great area for rentals and flips

64154 – great area for rentals and flips

64155 – great area for rentals and flips

64157 – great area for rentals and flips

64158 – great area for rentals and flips

64068 – great area for rentals and flips

I hope this can help some of you new investors and maybe some seasoned investors as well.

I'm on my phone so I'm not sure how to reference lol

Skip the cheap houses go the higher class asset and chase the school districts or popular areas. The cash flow is less, but the quality is better. 

Look at something like a 2/1 in waldo (64114) for like 110-130k and it should hit near 1%. Or go out to the burbs and chase a school districts like Blue Springs (64105) and get like a 3/2 for around the same price.

As with most of the areas in the urban core, these are rough areas and rarely perform well. There just isn't a good tenant pool in these low end areas. They might look good on paper but the reality is much different. I like the suburban areas east of the 435 loop which includes Independence, Raytown, South Kansas City and Grandview. These areas can vary, but in general, you are not going to see any blight or high crime with the exception of a couple of pockets. 

Thank you everyone. This has been extremely helpful!

@Nicole Gambino Highly recommend spending a few days driving these neighborhoods and getting to know areas of KC.

I started my real estate investing career mid 2015 and cureently have 3 rentals in Grandview and one in Independence (64050) and they all have been performing pretty well so far. 

If you are starting out definitely dont look into anything B+ or lower irrespective of how attractive the deal(s) may look on paper.

I would also recommend plugging in the zipcode (for a potential deal) in city-data.com and looking at the ‘median household income’ and a few other staristics along with the crime map on neighborhoodscout.com and trulia

Good luck!

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