Well if you are planning to live there for long better to invest now because if it is expensive now than it will not become suddenly cheaper later. When I was living in Barcelona it was cheaper for me to look for a house for sale in Spain and buy it than to rent all the time. It just made much more sense.
Yes. There are many variables to consider and you should consider a SFR to start or LP syndication to start. Learn for a year then decide next steps and goals
@Ethan, try David Greene's 'long distance real estate investing' book to read everything that there is on the topic and make the decision which feels best to you. Now reading it myself btw!
@Ethan Aycock - it depends on your strategy. I live in LA, where cap rates and (cash flow) returns are compressed - which is great for investors who are interested in appreciation (vs cash flow). So if you want a (potential) high payout somewhere in the future, than core markets such as LA/NY/SF etc will be good markets for you. On the other hand, cash flow investors, like me, tend to invest in secondary markets. I invest in FL and TX, where appreciation might not be a s high as in LA, but the cash flow is significant and much higher than in core markets.
@Ethan Aycock A lot depends on your long term plans and goals. Do you plan to reside in the area for a long time? Are you comfortable investing out of state? If not, then you need to educate yourself on the topic. Are you looking to make quick cash or long term residual income? Quick cash may transform into ordinary income taxed at your W-2 rates. If that applies to you, then calculate how much of that quick cash will you actually make?!
Review your answers to the aforementioned questions and research various investment strategies to see which one appeals/works best for your personal situation. Learn in by talking to other experienced investors, reading books and listening to podcasts and make the move.
Best of luck!