Where can i find information on the local rental market in a given area. Not just average rents but info that would tell me whether the area is a good place for a rental property.
There's website that have heat indexes (Zillow, Trulia, etc) on crime. You could also do research on school districts (i.e. who has the best). Also if you gravitate more towards areas with higher ownership rates of property, that can usually serve as a good indicator of quality school district and crime.
You also want to look at population growth.
The MLS can help with all of this info as well.
I am not sure if there is such a thing. If that information is important to you, you should go to the area where you want to invest, walk, talk, drive around. Use your skills as an observer.
Wherever you invest - there are always someone who will rent from you. You may not want to go where there are gangs.
I started out over 40 years ago buying junkers in marginal neighborhoods - I did well - while other investors were more particular - I just wanted to get into the business and start building my portfolio - it worked - today I have reach beyond my wildest dreams with expensive house, junkers and commercial properties.
It's a great business when you understand that real estate, real properties and real income is not about brick and mortar but about PEOPLE, their needs and and wants - master the people business and you will master the real estate business.
Order and read this book to get ahead of your competition How to win friends and influence people by Dale Carnegie
I took his course in 1962 and today I am re-reading it - I am sue you will enjoy the book also and will make it a part of your life.
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