Investing While Moving to Another State

15 Replies

My wife and I are planning to move to Orlando, Florida at the end of the year. We currently own a 2-unit multifamily home in Providence, Rhode Island. We want to keep this house as a rental property and buy a new property in the greater Orlando area. Currently, we manage the property in RI ourselves but are considering hiring a property manager (or company) to assist us in managing this rental property (e.g., finding renters, maintaining units...etc.).

Here are my questions for everyone:

1) For those who have been in a similar situation or own a property in another state, should we get a property manager or just hire contractors as needed for issues? For those in the Providence area, what person/company do you use and/or recommend for property management?

2) What are some steps that we can take now to get the process started for finding deals in the greater Orlando area? Does anyone have recommendations for real estate agents who specialize in investments/buy and hold properties? We are looking for a 3bed, 2bath home in the Orlando/Winter Park/Oviedo areas that can eventually become a rental property - so any leads would also be appreciated.

@Justin Allison it depends on whether you have a solid team of contractors you can rely on. If you do, you may be able to self manage remotely. If not, I'd recommend a property manager. Essentially you'd be paying for their team, and their ability to be on site if needed, of course.

I know several good property management companies in the area so I hesitate to recommend any specific one here over others. If you can manage it schedule wise, I'd recommend attending a RIREIG meeting before you move (there's one tomorrow night for example), and asking local investors there (including me if you like) who they use. See if you start hearing the same name(s) repeatedly or if a consensus emerges about some companies being good or bad.

I can't really help with the Orlando questions, though you're not the first person I know who's moving (or has recently moved) from Rhode Island to Florida. I can put you in touch with a couple of people who moved to "Florida" if you like but I'm not sure exactly where they are in FL and unlike RI, it's a big state :)

It looks like @Matthew Charron (who moved from RI to FL recently) is in Palm Bay which isn't too far from Orlando, and I know he's a great real estate agent, so he's one possible resource; looks like his email address is on his BP user page.

@Justin Allison Do you plan on living in the property and then converting it over to a rental? What are you looking to spend? I know a great buyers agent. She has helped me purchase my first home here, my first rental, and my current home.  I would not consider her to be an investment-specific realtor but she knows plenty about the Orlando area. Send me a message and I can give you here contact info. If you want more info about Orlando and my experience with a rental here I would be happy to help. When are you looking to make the move?  

@Anthony Thompson Thank you for the helpful insight! We do have some contractors that we like but I wouldn’t say that we have a complete team. So we may end up going the property management route.

I’ve actually been wanting to attend a RIREIA for a while now. I’ll try to make it to the meeting tomorrow. But if I don’t, I’ll reach back out to you for more information about the companies you have in mind.

Yes, any contacts you have of people who have been through this same situation would be great!

If you want to focus on investing instead of managing, I would say hire property management for the property that will be in a different state than you.

@Tyler Gibson Thanks for offering to help! Here are the answers to your questions...

Do you plan on living in the property and then converting it over to a rental? Yes

What are you looking to spend? $150,000 to $200,000 (I put $200,000 because the Oviedo area seems to be on the higher end but may have higher rent rates?)

When are you looking to make the move? We want to be in Florida by December (towards the beginning of the month).

Ok, I’ll PM you for more info about the agent and general advice about investing in the area. Thanks!!!

@Courtney Jones Excellent point! I guess our fear is that we will end up having to manage the property management people. But we’re hoping that if we go that route, we can get a good company that will allow us to focus on investing as you said. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

@Justin Allison , I went the property management route- have for 3 years and have not been disappointed. I love not having to take that"the drain is plugged" phone call. LOL. Wishing you the best. 

@Justin Allison  I'm a realtor in the greater Orlando area - mainly working the area north of downtown Orlando up through northeast quadrant (UCF area, Oviedo, Winter Park, Winter Springs, Lake Mary, Sanford).  About half of my business is working with investors to locate property to fix and rent (only a few looking for flips).  "Deals" are not super prevalent right now in the $175-250k range (in the areas mentioned above) as these have been a hot commodity for the last 3-5 months with multiple offer situations -- especially on move-in ready properties but yes, even on those needing work.  Generally speaking, our local market is just beginning to show signs of evening out in this price point (partly due to conservative appraisals) as we head into the fall but unfortunately, the inventory is slowing as well.  I mention 'conservative appraisals' because most everything "off market" being sent my way is highly overvalued with margins no where near what they're suggesting.  Things are popping up but not being in too much of a hurry will pay off.  Happy to share more insights and assist - please feel free to reach out!

Definitely important to make sure you have a dedicated team in place if you decide to invest in an out of state property that you've set your sights on. Most feel comfortable going the PM route simply because of the fact that everything is taken care of and you're guaranteed to have a person within the locale to take care of situations that may occur; otherwise, there are some tools available to you where you can bring a certain level of automation to that rental management process (ie. automatically syndicating a single listing to 10+ major listing sites, thorough tenant screening with full background checks, digital lease creation, automated online rent collection, and maintenance tracking). If you're looking for a recommendation I'd be happy to share more information. As for the Orlando area, in particular, I'll defer to others' recommendations (no real familiarity with the market). @Justin Allison

@Rob B. Thank you for the info! We have a bit more time to decide than we initially thought but we are still going back and forth on whether we want a PM. I’m glad we have more time to do research and vet potential providers. Any recommendations you have would be greatly appreciated!

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