Moving to Hartford, CT. Buy or rent short-term?

11 Replies | Hartford, Connecticut

Hi all! 

I am moving to Hartford, CT this fall and am currently figuring out what would be the best decision to take for short-term (2-3 years) living. I am a newbie but am interested in investing in my own place, which maybe I can later rent or profit from it. Since there are many experienced investor (hopefully with knowledge of this area), I would like to ask for any advice on locations, things that you wish you would have known, or any suggestions in general are greatly appreciated. Currently, I am looking for properties under 200K and take advantage of the FHA loan.

@Yoribaldis Olivo welcome to the Hartford area. I have a few holdings in the area (SFR and MFR) and started the same way. Feel free to reach out any time. I can share some of my experience with areas. Appreciation and CT is not as heady as other areas of the country, but I think we will improve. Definitely opportunities to be had if you know where to look.

@Rick Santasiere Great! Thank you for the response. As of now, I am mainly looking for places close to work near East Hartford (SFR). I have been also looking into Glastonbury, Manchester, and Vernon but no luck yet finding a place that I would like to live in. From my research as of now, Glastonbury seems like the nicer and safer area but it is also more expensive.

Glastonbury is indeed nice, however, if you don't have kids in school it is not worth the price tag and definitely not the taxes. And, zero cash flow for rentals. People move to Glastonbury for the schools.

Hey @Yoribaldis Olivo , welcome to CT! I work in the Hartford area and am also looking at MFRs. I'm not an investor (yet!), but was raised in CT and despite my efforts to settle somewhere else in the country, my state kept pulling me home.

While I may not have investing experience, I can speak to neighborhoods that are good to live in. Please note I've done some research on these markets (I'm focusing more on the western side of the state), this is just my knowledge/experience as a long-time CT resident. 

You're right about Glastonbury, my grandparents lived there for 50+ years. It's a great town, but I would say an older demographic, more money, more families, more owners/less renters.

Manchester is a great option, especially for young professionals - lots to do, restaurants, bars, walking trails, easy access to Hartford and the suburban towns that host lots of farmers markets and outdoor activities. 

Vernon is also a good town, it's a bit further out so if you're looking for a quick and easy commute, this may not be your best option. Also not sure what the rental market is like out there. 

If you're looking to stay on the eastern side of the city, Manchester is probably your best bet. I have a bunch of friends who have been renting there for years and will likely purchase in the area because they love it. 

Hope this helps. Again, welcome to CT. 

@Sara Kennedy Thanks! Great to hear that. From what I have read and your comments it seems like Manchester is a good spot to take a better look because it is closer to my works and a little more active. 

It definitely did! Gives me a better idea of how someone from the area looks at these places. I will take a closer look to places in Manchester and see if I find a good apartment/home. 

@Yoribaldis Olivo , what do you do that you will only be there for a short time?  

If @Shirley R. is right about Glastonbury, maybe buy the worst house on the best block, and by the time you leave the built up equity will help you succeed in you RE goals, instead of renting.

@Yoribaldis Olivo I'm a huge fan of house hacking. If I were you I'd find a MFR, live with minimal housing expenses then hire a PM when you move out if you don't want to sell it. That's what a friend (and now client) of mine did. He bought a 230K property with 3.5% down 3 years ago, lived in it for a year and a half and then moved. Now I send him a $2,500 check each month. The numbers work :)