Wichita Kansas Investors

25 Replies

All Wichita investors,

I came to the realization that I have not lived in Wichita for nearly 10 years. What changes do you see happening? what are the problem neighborhoods? what is something that is going on in the city that is getting you excited about real estate? Let's get to talking!

- Jimmy

@Jimmy Dang Did you see Fred VanFleet light up the Golden State Warriors last night in the 4th quarter? Wichita is on fire. Downtown has multi million dollar projects underway all year long. We are starting to grow slightly (I think).

On the rough end the Boeing 737s going down has been a big problem, Spirit has been cutting back. Others are stepping up, but we need to get that plane up in the air again. 

Decent development is going on. Call me biased but I’m seeing more violent crime as reported on the news taking place in South Wichita than I am NE, though it seems fairly minimal to me and almost never random. 

Things are going well from my viewpoint, we’re on the up and up. @Jared Viernes do you still have your pulse on the ICT?

Updated over 1 year ago

*VanVleet

@Jimmy Dang  Lawrence Dumont Stadium is getting completely rebuilt. It is supposed to change the walking flow of downtown to support the local bars and restaurants better. Hadn’t heard about the final four but the downtown area did great recently with the round of 32 when KU was in town (large outdoor themed bars/gaming environments). The  new companies we are getting are smaller in size, no big announcements recently that I’ve heard of. Several of the companies we have currently are solidifying their positions here, Cargill built a brand new building downtown and Fidelity Bank has a large building operation underway right now. WSU is making large investments to try to make us more marketable to tech companies.

Downtown seems to be pretty hot, and doesn’t show much sign of slowing down. I think it is also worth noting that the majority of downtown and the Delano area are also in qualified opportunity zones, so those that are looking for deals and have some capital gain to invest in the area for long term may have some tax benefits to go in the area as well. I know there is a map you can find with an online search that will show the area for this. 

Overall, I do think Wichita is improving, and east Wichita still in Sedgwick county but Andover schools are popular, as well as NE Wichita. I also anticipate to see some changes over the long term with the new baseball stadium, the fidelity bank expansion downtown.

Originally posted by @Jimmy Dang :

@William Carpenter its interesting reading the views of an investor and the views of the typical Wichitan. I seen the announcement of the new baseball stadium and I've only seen negative response for the public

I dont live there physically now - have been in Topeka going on 2 yrs now but still have my rentals there and family so am back all the time.  We miss it.  

I always follow the local Wichita news and probably do more so than Topeka's - however I cant say I've seen a lot of negative about the baseball stadium other than how the process went down.  I think people were more concerned over how they started the process and didnt have a team lined up etc -- The LD had to go - was pretty dilapidated - Excited to see what they end up with and think it will be a huge net positive for the city - too bad it couldnt be the Royals AAA affiliate instead of the Marlins but beggars can't be choosers.

If you've been gone 10 yrs now and not certain how often you go back - things really started to change in my mind 5-6 or so years ago.  Lots of positives in my head previously but when the city signed up the Chung guy to complete his report on the "brain drain" that was happening this seemed to get a lot of positive energy going.  IMO anyways - I'm sure other locals may have a different point of view.  Another thing that helped IMO was completing flushing the Minnesota Guys bad energy down the drain and getting their downtown buildings into the hands of developers who would do something with them.  

I still see myself living in the desert Southwest someday but will always have ties to the Wichita area and if stars align a crash pad there when I can purchase a larger apartment complex or have enough doors I can keep one open for myself/family unless we end up moving back which is a possibility.

As someone who didn’t grow up in Wichita and only started living here I think I have a different perspective than a lot of folks who grew up here.  I don’t know if you follow the Chung report, but it has a pretty negative view of negative compared to other comparable cities.  There is a problem with a lot of people educated at WSU moving elsewhere.  That being said i think there is a whole lot of great stuff going on here that gets me pretty excited.

First, the city is actively looking for ways to revitalize, invest, and spur growth in the area.  Wichita State has been building there innovation campus which is bringing WSU into a better position to attract more students, I am excited to see the business school move there.  It also will increase the partnership with the major employers in the area by increasing the connection points with students while they are still in school.  WSU is pushing hard to be the top school in the Midwest and is investing heavily in the future to make that happen, and the city is assisting them in that endeavor.

As an outsider, the first thing I recognized about Wichita was the prevalence of the Wichita flag.  From what I understand this is not something that has existed until fairly recently (6 or so years ago).  This town has more civic pride than any other city if have ever lived in.  I couldn’t tell you at all what any other city flag looks like and I have lived all over the US.  It is nearly impossible to go a couple blocks without seeing the flag or a representation of it somewhere.  The city made sure to make the flag was not copyrighted and that it never will be.  This make every business person able to make representations using it in products, advertising, or on signs and billboards.  The flag is everywhere! To me, being in a community that actively expresses pride for itself is amazing.  I think Wichita is the Texas of cities, the city has done a great job of encouraging civic pride.

As @Jonathan R. stated there is a lot of local businesses investing in Wichita.  I work now for Fidelity Bank and am about to start working on the commercial business side (super excited to learn the banking perspective on commercial!).  As mentioned, Fidelity is building an expansion of the current tower connected to the east of it, they are also working on building a giant several story parking lot just to the southeast.  This parking lot is not going to be the standard gray dark and dreary one you always see though.  It is going to be fully painted, with modern looks and technology, as well as constant light shining the design is literally to look like a shining beacon of light.  It is designed with the expectation that cars may eventually become obsolescent so it’s design can be quickly turned into a building for businesses.  The tower itself is going to be much more than fidelity needs at this time so hey expect to fill it with businesses.

I Think the future of Wichita is pretty bright.

@Jimmy Dang yes, Minnesota guys. A number of years back there was a group that bought some property downtown, were supposed to make some big things happen, and nothing really came from it too much. I think the city also helped out with some of it, and it gave a lot of people a bad taste  obviously, they were from Minnesota  

I think that’s part of why the spaghetti works building sat for so long, plus I think the city was reluctant to help. But with that remodeled, and the new construction in front of it happening, it should bring more life back to that hole. 

I also read the city is helping with one of the buildings that was an old Minnesota guys building on Douglas and broadway and it is going to be completely remodeled. 

There are a few spots downtown I would like to see the city clean up a little, or that we need to see some improvement to. It would help the overall look and feel of the area. 

Glad to see my hometown on the move. I get back once or twice a year and have noticed the change in downtown and around WSU. Having graduated from there I always wondered why the Shockers didn’t build more housing on campus. With the innovation center and the new business school things are looking up (hopefully for the basketball team this year).

 there are a few great old Victorian Homes in the Fairmount area that would make great flips or Airbnb’s if it were safer or at least the perception of crime wasn’t there. 

Delano seems like it would a good buy, but on my annual pilgrimages to Hartman Jack, I drove around this Christmas and didn’t see much housing.

Compared to to Tulsa, OKC and KC how does Wichita stack up from a REI perspective?

@Kevin Polite Tulsa, OKC, and KC have had some more economic growth than Wichita in the past few years.  I don’t think Wichita is all that great a place if you are looking for appreciation, mostly we just get the standard 1-3% per year.

That being said there are definitely some places with a lot of potential.  I absolutely agree with you on the Delano area being a good buy, in fact I just closed on a house there last month.  I hope the Fairmount area will clean up a little more with the innovation campus just north of there and would give it a fair chance with the help of the city.

I think there is a lot of opportunities for traditional purchase cash flow and BRRRR strategies and you can get in at much lower prices than most area. Much much lower.

@Jared Viernes congrats on the house. I invest on the east side however from my point of view (6k miles away), the growth seems stagnant or at least 1%.

Btw big thanks to everyone on this forum! It so nice being able to speak to local investors.

@Jared Viernes thanks man. Spoiled here in Atlanta. I was able to buy my rentals during the downturn in what I had hoped would be up & coming areas and it's paid off. Plus with the growth projected here I gambled on appreciation. I would like to in the next couple of years get a duplex in Wichita and rent one side out and have the other so when I start to visit more

Hello Kevin, 

I came back to Wichita a few years ago. Since then I've started a HML office out here. As stated earlier, the Delano and downtown areas are doing quite well. We saw a shortage in condo space the last couple years even with a large number of old building renovated to support the need. There is also a heavy revamping of the review front which impacts the areas south and north of Delano. I've heard talks of them shutting down McLean since it borders the river so waterfront development can continue. To say nothing of the never ending expansions further east into Andover and west into Goddard. If your focus remains on the rental sector then you're in good shape my friend. I have a number of rental units personally and my vacancies have been surprisingly low over the past year. Take care,

@Jared Viernes @Kevin Polite

Jared's right. Since 2010, the Oklahoma City is the 10th-fastest-growing large metro in the country and has grown twice as fast as the nation. However, appreciation is still around 3%. We're mostly a buy a hold/cash flow focus market right now! 

Originally posted by @Kevin Polite :

Glad to see my hometown on the move. I get back once or twice a year and have noticed the change in downtown and around WSU. Having graduated from there I always wondered why the Shockers didn’t build more housing on campus. With the innovation center and the new business school things are looking up (hopefully for the basketball team this year).

 there are a few great old Victorian Homes in the Fairmount area that would make great flips or Airbnb’s if it were safer or at least the perception of crime wasn’t there. 

Delano seems like it would a good buy, but on my annual pilgrimages to Hartman Jack, I drove around this Christmas and didn’t see much housing.

Compared to to Tulsa, OKC and KC how does Wichita stack up from a REI perspective?

 I just bought my first househack in the Fairmount neighborhood and had similar thoughts on the area. However, at least for the street I'm on, I've felt quite safe with my family and have met some great neighbors and overall felt a positive vibe, although the neighborhood could certainly use some work. It's another area I feel like is on the rise, especially with the innovation campus going up.

Downtown has definitely seen a lot of development/redevelopment in the last several years. One project that I haven't seen mentioned yet is the medical school/culinary school project by Sudha Tokala. She bought four big buildings downtown including the Finney State Office Building and the Broadway Plaza in hopes of creating these schools along with housing for the students and some sort of permanent farmer's market. Even for how much progress downtown has made, it seems on the surface a bit overly optimistic to me, but there seems to be a lot of support for the idea. I'd love to see it work.

Hey Guys,

I am looking to invest in Wichita, KS. according to census that town has minor declining in population last couple of years. Also I believe job growth hasn't been at the rate of KC & OKC. But I heard Amazon is building a warehouse in ICT. I understand it is a decent cash flow market but hopefully someone who is actively in that market can shed some light. Thanks in advance guys!

Market is fairly hot(but inflated) right now. Rentals are going pretty quick and we are buying everything we can. I lost one this morning that someone paid a silly amount over asking for a 4-plex. 

Are there any investors in Wichita or surrounding area's? I'm looking to work directly with investor new to the real estate game and looking to get hands dirty. Feel free to reach out to me and thank you for your time