New investor from CA looking for GA multi-family advice

20 Replies

Hey BP!

I am a newbie from Southern California and am interested in purchasing real estate in Georgia since the prices here are too steep and I would be flying out to GA several times a year anyway to visit family. Ideally, I would like to acquire multi-family near Atlanta and was hoping to get some input from local investors. I have done some preliminary research into potential areas primarily in North Atlanta, and it seems to be dominated by large apartment complexes. Is there a market for smaller multi-family buildings or should I shift my focus to single family? Thanks in advance and I look forward to connecting with the BP community!

Heya! I live in SoCal too and I grew up in Atlanta and also my investment properties are there. For the most part, you aren't going to find residential MFRs that will cash flow, and you also aren't going to find a ton of cash flow in northern Atlanta. Over the years that investors have been eating up cash flow there, it's mostly been SFRs I-20 (both directions) and south. Not to say there's nothing on the north side, but it's much fewer and farther between. And when Atlanta was in it's heyday for cash flow, MFRs weren't where it was. 

Not trying to be a total buzzkill, but I'd definitely look at various areas as well as SFRs...if for no other reason than to compare the options. But if you don't find cash flow with the MFRs or on the north side, know it's not you...

Do you have any counties or communities in mind in north Atlanta?

Hi @Amy Park the first steps is to determine a price point and the return range you are looking for on your investment. The multi family in Atlanta is mainly intown and out east in Gwinnett county. There are patches sprinkled throughout but it varies neighborhood to neighborhood. You also have to watch out for the properties that are Zoned SFR but being marketed at a MFR through an owner conversion. Let me know if you have specific questions!

@Amy Park I have five in Atlanta and would like to learn what you are seeing there. A lot of 1960 properties is what I’m seeing these day to get the 1% rent to value ratios.

@Amy Park you will have a hard time finding MF's that cash flow in North Atlanta. IMO SFR is they way to go in Atlanta right now, you can find in-town properties that cash flow and have a chance for appreciation. If your risk tolerance can not handle in-town investing, the northern suburbs provide good school districts and you should be able to cash flow with the right deal, although I doubt you will see much appreciation.

@Ali Boone hello neighbor (sort of since we know how far it takes to get to Venice from OC!) Thank you for your input, not a buzzkill at all! I am glad to now it wasn't just me and will definitely consider SFRs. 

@Justen Ashcraft I am considering Cobb, Gwinett and Fulton counties. My in-laws live in Johns Creek and Hoschton, so I am starting to look around those areas and closer to Atlanta.

@Ryan Johnston Thank you for the advice! I would love to connect and may reach out with any questions!

@Lane Kawaoka I was looking in North Atlanta and finding mostly large apartment developments. This was just a preliminary search and I don’t have have any brokers out there yet or anything. I see that you’re OOS too, glad to see since I know OOS investing is such a polarizing topic on here.  

@Rush Wall Thank you for the input! I will definitely have to look into SFRs. 

Originally posted by @Amy Park :

Hey BP!

I am a newbie from Southern California and am interested in purchasing real estate in Georgia since the prices here are too steep and I would be flying out to GA several times a year anyway to visit family. Ideally, I would like to acquire multi-family near Atlanta and was hoping to get some input from local investors. I have done some preliminary research into potential areas primarily in North Atlanta, and it seems to be dominated by large apartment complexes. Is there a market for smaller multi-family buildings or should I shift my focus to single family? Thanks in advance and I look forward to connecting with the BP community!

 Only been to Atlanta once and don't know jack about exact locations. I would find it absurd there are no multi opps there. There are multi opps in LA today and Atlanta is growing at double to triple the LA pace. 

Good luck with your search! 

I would look into SFRs in Forsyth county as well.

Cobb County probably holds the most potential for cash flow. There are cash flowing opportunities in Fulton but they may be in neighborhoods where a hands off approach wouldnt work. Also I'd hire a local you trust as a go between for your subcontractors and suppliers. A lot of unethical contractors will hear you are from California and charge you double their usual rate.

@Amy Park If you're investing specifically for cash flow there are better markets than ATL right now but the economic fundamentals of ATL are so solid that if you are factoring appreciation speculation it does seem to have the ability to do big things when comparing it to the other strong cash flow markets in the midwest which are less likely to benefit from appreciation.

I operate in Both Cincinnati Ohio and Atlanta Georgia And the cash flow is much better in Cincinnati.  

I run a BP meetup in ATL on the last Tuesday of each month. If you're in town sourcing markets and deals you should swing by. It is a great place to meet brokers, wholesalers, contractors, and other professionals active in the market. 

I see you mentioned SFRS in Cobb. You should talk to @Terry Burger , @Julie Kern , @Vincent Crane &@Brandon Comer All who come to the meet up are doing some wholesaling in these areas. @Artem Rost  & @Mike O'Connor   are agent's who has helped others in the group by their investment properties. 

Just wanted to say hi.  Also a newbie in So Cal looking to do OOS investing.  I'm currently focused on Cleveland and Pittsburgh due to familiarity and family ties.  

My team specializes in investment purchases in Atlanta and surrounding cities. We would be glad to help you on your search and run a market analysis for you when the need arises. Our office line is (404) 564- 9657.

Hahaha, right? It can be like traveling to another country just to get to another county! 

You bet. Feel free to run any stuff by me as you go along. Atlanta is definitely my jam for knowledge, being from there and having investing there. I don't always know neighborhood-by-neighborhood anymore just because I don't do anything there anymore, but general areas and opportunities I'm still pretty up on.

Thanks @Jered Sturm for your input and referrals! Will definitely reach out. Also, I would love to go to a meet up, will definitely try to schedule a trip out there to make one of them soon.

@Julie Kern and @Mathias Bekele - sending a connection request! 

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