Almost every day, people are asking me where in southwest Florida I would invest. My answer is always that it depends on what you’re looking for. For example, you can be looking for a single family home when your goal is actually to get some appreciation out of the property. You will of course hope to break even or even get a bit of cash flow out of the property, but basically what you want to do is capitalize on the appreciation since you will hold onto the property for at least five years.
Remember that the value of a single family home is based on the desire of people to live there. That can be a renter or an owner. However, if you are interested less in appreciation and more in cash flow, the best model for you is a multi-family unit, such as a duplex or a triplex. This is because the value of the property is based on its ability to generate rent. So, first you have to decide if you want to focus on appreciation or cash flow. Once you know that, we can help you find the right investment property.
You also have to decide how much money you want to invest. You can buy something on the lower end of the market or at the higher end. If you have a little extra to invest, you can consider buying a few properties at the low end or middle of the market instead of just one property at the high end. It depends on your particular investment strategy.
Another thing to consider is the way your appreciation or cash flow will depend on the market itself. There are several different marketplaces, even just in Lee County. For instance, in Fort Myers, the market is generally more stable than in other parts of the county such as Cape Coral. In 2007 and 2008, when we had a major re-adjustment in property values, Fort Myers properties decreased about 10 percent each year. However, in other places, the loss was between 25 and 40 percent year in and year out. That is a major change in a property’s value. So, the market itself may impact where you choose to invest.
Finally, you have to think about what you want in an individual home. You might look at the age of the property, whether it has a wood frame, runs on a septic system, and other details. Most people give a property manager a call before contacting a sales agent. We will give you a free rental analysis, which tells you what we think you can get in rental income, how sound your investment strategy is and the overall rentability of the property you may be looking at.
If we can help you with a rental analysis or anything else, please don’t hesitate to contact us at Realty Services Property Management. We look forward to working with you.