I currently reside in NJ and am looking to start REI. I have a rough timeline where my girlfriend and I plan on moving out to San Francisco (for personal reasons) and searching for jobs out there within 6-8 months.
Does it make sense to purchase a property here for buy-and-hold? By the time I found something, closed on it, did repairs, and got renters in there, I would only have a couple months of self-managing before I have to leave in the hands of property managers. I've heard for beginners it's important to self-manage since you need to keep expenses low and it's a valuable educational opportunity.
It depends if your okay with long distant properties. I know I personally wouldn't want to do it, but at the same time, I would want rental property more than a couple hours away. Being as your moving to San Francisco which is a very expensive place to live, you could consider saving up as much as you can before you get out there and try purchasing a multi-unit property to house hack it. (Look up house hack on BP if your not sure what that is.)
Thanks @Colin Smith , that's sort of my thinking for now. If we did up getting jobs in SF, we would almost certainly live out over in the East Bay, either Berkeley/Oakland/etc. I've looked a lot at properties out there and there's virtually nothing that we would be able to afford. Even areas further east (Walnut Creek, San Ramon, etc), median home prices are $800K.
I'm most likely going to have to either suck it up and use a property manager, or just wait until I'm out in the Bay Area and try investing in markets like Sacramento.
many bay area people are buying in Sacramento because of the lower price points. I don't know how a new person can buy a rental house in the bay area because of the sharp run up of prices there the last three years. If you ever have questions about the Sacramento market , you can ask me.
I say go for it and get a property in NJ area - a place you already know. You don't know what future holds and you will be an investing in area you understand.
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