Hey! From NY, Interested in PA (or maybe NJ?)

21 Replies

Hey everyone! I'm Joseph Ranola, Police Officer, Real Estate Agent and aspiring Real Estate Investor from Staten Island, NY. I've been here for a little while but have never made an introduction, and I'm still extremely new at all this anyway. I'm interested in buying rental properties (single family or a multi-family on the lower end of the price scale) in PA, most likely Philadelphia, Reading and Lehigh Valley- although I'm very open to other areas as I'm still trying to figure out if those are good to begin with. Would love to connect with a fellow realtor in a great area and start looking at stuff, I want to get my feet wet ASAP! It's myself, my brother and best friend and we don't have that much between us but we're looking to be creative and get our first property and grow from there. Whether you're a realtor that can help us find properties, an investor that wants to work together to get us started in return for whatever we can possibly do for you, or even someone active whom we can help and follow around to learn some stuff firsthand, please reach out! Thanks guys!

@Joseph Ranola Welcome to BP! Philly and its suburbs have some opportunities... you'll have to figure out what's important to you (what types of properties, price point, how to finance (salary/traditional?), then you can get laser focused and turn this into a reality. It will also help you to scale. Let me know if I can help answer any of your questions or if you would like to talk.

@Dave Godfrey Thanks for reaching out! Philly and it’s suburbs sounds good to me, I’m only an hour and ten minutes away. As far as what we’re looking for, a single or multi family residential home around $100k (a little more or less is fine) with traditional financing. All 3 of us have great jobs and great credit so securing a mortgage shouldn’t be a problem. Like it’s always said on the podcast and forums, I don’t need this first deal to be a homerun, I just need it for the main purpose of getting in the trenches and getting experience for the next 100 deals! A little cash flow would be great too :) Let me know if this sounds good and if you think we can get moving! 

Originally posted by @Joseph Ranola :

@Dave Godfrey Thanks for reaching out! Philly and it’s suburbs sounds good to me, I’m only an hour and ten minutes away. As far as what we’re looking for, a single or multi family residential home around $100k (a little more or less is fine) with traditional financing. All 3 of us have great jobs and great credit so securing a mortgage shouldn’t be a problem. Like it’s always said on the podcast and forums, I don’t need this first deal to be a homerun, I just need it for the main purpose of getting in the trenches and getting experience for the next 100 deals! A little cash flow would be great too :) Let me know if this sounds good and if you think we can get moving! 

 I don't know about 100K for a MF, if only in a high risk zone. You also need to figure out the areas you want to invest. 

@Lana Lee

Yes I'm fine with a SFH as well, I'm just trying to start small. Philadelphia has been looking good to me, it's a great city and I go often so for REI to work there too that's pretty cool to me. In the Lehigh Valley area Bethlehem is very interesting to me as well. The problem is there's so many little towns and cities that when I'm looking at some properties in Bethlehem, one will pop up in a neighboring little town so it makes me think okay, I wouldn't mind this area either let me look it up. So many places, but those two are my favorites.

Hi @Joseph Ranola !

Welcome to the biggerpockets community! I’ve a newbie as well. My husband and I are looking for our first house hack duplex in NY/NJ. So far he biggerpockets “The Book on Rental Property Investing” has been really helpful. Also using online income maps and the census website helps you analyze which area is best to rent in based on owner occupancy ratio, population growth, income, etc.

Best of luck in your journey!

Mélida

Hi @Joseph Ranola - you might want to take a look at Newburgh, NY. I think there might be some properties available fitting your requirements, and it’s not too far from Staten Island. 

The Capital District, where I primarily operate, also has property fitting your requirements, but that’s a real hike from NYC.

@Michael Gansberg

I’m very impressed with your accolades and just put your book in my Amazon shopping cart. If someone like you is saying to look up there then it definitely deserves some thought! If you’d like to discuss this further, feel free to shoot me a message or let me know and I’ll send you one. I’m sure you have a whole operation going on but if you have room somewhere to guide a couple of rookies in your area in return for however we can assist you or even jumping in our deal as well, everything is on the table on my end! 

@Joseph Ranola - I hope you enjoy the book, I enjoyed writing it. I think you'll find something useful in the area regarding finding management, it's probably the most valuable sentence or two in the book. 

I'd be happy to function as broker on any acquisition you're considering, but my management is swamped right now- we have more work than we can handle as far out as we can see. Roofs, front fascias, a replacement of a three story porch for rear egress, foundation work, 5 apartment turnovers(2 of which are intensive) - oh, and that's just what I remember of August while sitting at a Starbucks, by the way! I'm going to be selling off the more management intensive stuff in the coming months and replacing it with more chill stuff, because life is too short, you know what I mean?

As a younger investor, I fought for high cap rates(and by #[email protected]#, I earned 'em.) Now, in my dotage(I'm 44;) I look at the portfolio and can clearly see that the theoretically lower cap rate properties have been substantial outperformers over the years on the metric of cash flow- so I'm pruning the challenging(and capturing the principal appreciation, *wink wink*) to replace it with the chill. 

MG

@Joseph Ranola , Welcome to BP! There is plenty of opportunities in and around Philadelphia. I'm familiar with the market and I'm active in the investing community. Feel free to reach out and I'll see if there is any way that I can help you guys out!

Hello @Joseph Ranola , have you considered the Harrisburg/Central PA area?  It's a cheaper entry point than Philly suburbs, and there are still great areas that cash flow well and will appreciate.  In fact Cumberland County is and has been the fastest growing county in the state of PA for some time.  Harrisburg is also the capital so you will always have those state jobs to help keep the local economy stabilized.  Depending on traffic I can make it to New York City in 2-3 hrs.

@Joseph Ranola - What exactly are you looking for?  I'm not a wholesaler, but I network with other investors and brokers from real estate meetups or just by going out there and walking through properties.  Also, check out Craigslist and apps like Realtor/Trulia too just to get a feel for prices in the market.

@Travis Wylie Sounds good, I’ll check a bunch of stuff out today. Keep me in mind if you ever see anything at a lower price point that would be a prime buy for a new investor! If you know if any meet ups in the area I’d love to come too. Thanks! 

@Joseph Ranola   There are 3 really good meetups.  You can download the meetup app and search real estate for Harrisburg area.  The meetups are CARPOA, Central PA Investors, and LIMG (Landlords, Investors, Mastermind group).  All are great and that is just in the Harrisburg area.  There is also a good one in York, one in Lebanon, and one in Lancaster.  @Chad Gallagher runs some of these meetups and is a wealth of knowledge himself.

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