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Jack B.
  • Rental Property Investor
  • Seattle, WA
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Thinking of moving to and investing in Tampa/Clearwater/St. Peter

Jack B.
  • Rental Property Investor
  • Seattle, WA
Posted Apr 18 2016, 08:46

I own a few rentals in Seattle but have been researching Florida for a year as it is more favorable to rental property investing than Seattle. After looking at a few potential states for a new place to move to for more cash flow favorable properties and other personal criteria I am looking for (warm weather, cheaper real estate, no state income tax, no ghetto's, lot's of jobs in my IT speciality, etc.) Florida and these areas specifically came to the top of my list.

So I've been looking at Clearwater, St. Petersburg, Tampa, Kissimmee, etc. Real estate prices look good but are these houses in the ghetto when in the 100-150K range? They don't seem to be when I look at Trulia's Crime Heat map, in that there is less crime there than any of the areas I own property in HERE. MUCH less.

Example of property I'm looking at:

http://www.zillow.com/homedetails/2884-Edenwood-St-Clearwater-FL-33759/47021940_zpid/

Tampa, Florida

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Jack B.
  • Rental Property Investor
  • Seattle, WA
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Jack B.
  • Rental Property Investor
  • Seattle, WA
Replied Jun 5 2016, 06:18
Originally posted by @Adrian Smude:

Jack B. I agree with Lakeland being a great rental market. But make sure you know the area before buying. I've been seeing more and more out of state investors selling for a loss or buying with no possibility of making $$ because the deal looked good on paper.

 Word has it South Lakeland is the good part, but no true ghettos in general in the other areas. Crime seems ok there. My understanding is insurance is cheaper since not coastal and that house prices are low because, again, not coastal. Commutable to jobs in Tampa and Orlando, so it has economic power.

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Paul Winka
  • Rental Property Investor
  • St Louis, MO
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Paul Winka
  • Rental Property Investor
  • St Louis, MO
Replied Jun 5 2016, 17:26
Originally posted by @Patrick L.:
Originally posted by @Don Johnston:

@Jack B.  I lived in the Tampa Bay area (Valrico) for 12+ years.  I tell anyone thinking of moving there to visit in the summer, then decide.  I think it is a great area and if I move there again, I would choose closer to the Gulf...better chance for a breeze and less time it takes to go fishing.

Also, my opinion, choose someone who lives, works and invests in the area to help you out.  I have "driven" around on google maps street view enough to know that you get a real mix of properties within close proximity.  (I have also physically driven the area when I lived there.)

I hope to invest in Florida and then move there (in that order since I have obligations here in San Diego).  I will be getting in touch with someone local.

 No reason to live inland in Florida, all of the negatives without any of the benefits.  The summer is just fine out fishing or at the sandbar on the boat.  

If I lived in California I know I wouldn't be able to afford a backyard like the one I have in St Pete

....

In your opinion it's OK to invest inland, but not live there? I am taking a closer look at Lakeland now, in part because of this thread. Who chooses to live in Lakeland? Is it safer from hurricanes or have a lower overall value because it is inland? 

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Adrian Smude
  • Rental Property Investor
  • Plant City, FL
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Adrian Smude
  • Rental Property Investor
  • Plant City, FL
Replied Jun 5 2016, 18:43

@Paul Winka there are many reasons I like Lakeland for a rental market.  A few are the many different type of jobs, a lot are factories, a lot of growth right now, I4 corridor, it's still possible to find deals, and for me it's close.  

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Benjamin Pekarek
  • Rental Property Investor
  • Asheville, NC
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Benjamin Pekarek
  • Rental Property Investor
  • Asheville, NC
Replied Jun 5 2016, 19:10

Jack,

I live in Sarasota county, but invest in Pinellas, Hillsborough, & Polk/central FL counties.

The cash flow is great, and the prices are fantastic - I'm doing a portfolio right now that is seventeen units, for $500,000. Cash flow as it sits is $7,500/ mo., and the market rents are $13,000. Central Florida is the only place I know to get those kinds of returns without being in the ghetto.