Southern Cali is definitely your best bet! We don't have hurricanes, swampy sticky weather, and we have the real Disneyland....what else can you ask for? Oh yah, we also have great deals on investment properties pretty much all throughout the area.
The "Inland Empire" which is situated between Los Angeles and Orange County (Disneyland area) is ripe with great buys! The types of houses and neighborhoods range from brand new developments to quaint established neighborhoods to multi-units and more.
My company, Renttoday.us is a property management firm that works exclusively with investors. We manage thousands of rental properties in the area and are extremely familiar with what areas are good, bad, and just so so. We can also give you complimentary rental analysis' and our sister company, FixD Construction handles all of the rehabilitation and maintenance.
I encourage you to check out our website at http://www.renttoday.us to see the types of houses investors are buying and what types of rents you can anticipate. You can also download lots of useful information about rental homes and property management.
There are tremendous opportunities in southwest Florida today that realize buyers being able to make purchases at fraction of the costs of 3 years ago. We recently sold a 2001 constructed home, 3/2/2, 1,600 sf, in move in condition for $59,500. This very same home sold in 2001 for over $200,000.
We have worked with a number of Canadian buyers recently and found a possible solution to the financing piece to be making financial arrangements in your home country and transferring the money to the US for the closing. This type of arrangement can have all of the earmarks of a cash transaction and can minimize the cash deposit and interest rates impact if financed in the US.
Some of the best opportunities are in North Port, Port Charlotte, Punta Gorda areas.
Good luck with your search.
Susan & Bill Eckler
Michael Saunders & company
1) SoCal will probably start much higher than 150k, but it might be worth looking into. Find someone familiar with that market, as I am in Georgia, not California, and can only tell you what my associates in SoCal are saying; get it from the horse's mouth.
2) There's no such thing as "minimum down payment." What you put down will depend on many factors, such as: a) the buyer's prerogative b) your credit picture c) the property d) the bank's prerogative.
3) Form relationships with REALTORS in the areas of interest and they will be able to guide you better, once they have more details of your situation.
4) Mortgage rate is a question for lenders (ask many, not just a few), not real estate agents. Avoid agents who attempt to speak outside their area of expertise!
5) Same goes for taxes; consult tax professionals
6) Property management companies: look for referrals. You need to be very cautious about the management company you choose. Some charge too much. Some do too little for you. Some charge too much AND do too little for you. The only way to know is to have experience with them. If you want to save yourself heartache and personal experience foibles, ask others! Get referrals and investigate thoroughly!
7) no matter what you do, you need to be cautious and knowledgeable; it's not easy and it's not safe, but it can be profitable if you're willing to put in the effort and proceed prudently!
Diane Wheatley, Broker