Home Buying in Los Angeles>Question Details

Investca, Home Buyer in Los Angeles, CA

I have 750K Cash to invest in real estate in SoCal. Where will I get the best deals/returns in the current market?

Asked by Investca, Los Angeles, CA Fri Apr 20, 2012

I have perfect credit buy have been living outside the US for ten years. Looking to invest for about 5 years. Looking at SFH, Multi, land for building.

Help the community by answering this question:


Addressing your question about which asset class, I would suggest that you target SFH's that will give you a portfolio that will be easier to liquidate in your 5 yr. time frame. If you are looking for a buy deep discounts & hold for cash flow. I would suggest that method over, trying to predict (speculate) on what areas will appreciate in the next 5 years. ( Most investment experts see a very flat market for a while)

If you are patient, the areas that will give you a higher current income, & higher intrinsic value, will be the outer geographic areas 1-2 hour radius of Los Angeles, which have also been the hardest hit. (Inland Empire, Palmdale-Lancaster, Palm Springs, Bakersfield) you will have a greater chance of buying below market value but will probably not see any appreciation in such a short time frame. You may also consider the inner city areas but you must have the right temperament for those areas( older inventory, higher repairs & maintenance, very competitive, & can be hard to manage). By targeting lower median priced areas, you will also have the opportunity to stretch & diversify your capital over many properties & buy newer inventory in better neighborhoods that to purchase higher priced homes that won't cash flow very well even with financing.

If you are looking to flip ( which I discourage, unless you have a high level experienced team behind you & for tax reasons) Stay in the areas with high velocity of transactions (entry level market median price market, in Los Angeles County.

Step 1, Position yourself to lock in as many 30yr fixed low interest loans for your portfolio there are institutional limits regardless of income. Step 2 look at VA foreclosures where you can secure an unlimited number of low interest loans 5% down (as long as you qualify with income) 3. Supplement your acquisitions with Seller-Financed property ( harder to find but well worth it if negotiated properly).

Most of all, work with a professional team who understands investing & are investors themselves. This will cut your learning curve & minimize major mistakes.

Best of luck,

E. San Jose
3 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 20, 2012
There is much stronger rental pricing in LA County & some areas in the Inland Empire vs. Coachella area ( Cathedral City, Palm Desert, Indio etc.)
Flag Wed Apr 25, 2012
I agree with Robert Chomentowski's answer. I would recommend that you make a cash flow play and then receive the upside of any appreciation in 5 years versus buying solely for appreciation. This means apartment buldings!

I have been an investor for over 18 years and currently own a 9-unit building in Santa Monica, CA. I think there are deals to be found anywhere in Southern California...you just need to work with a professional that has a "hyperlocal knowledge" (read "Stand Out With the Right Pro" article in the May 2012 issue of 'Money Magazine'). My firm, Horizon Realty, has just that. We are based in West Hollywood, CA and have numerous remote offices and experts in many neighborhoods and areas from Downtown L.A. to the Pacific Ocean, up to the San Fernando Valley and down to the South Bay. We have been in business for 25 years and would be delighted to assist you.

I currently have 3 pocket listings: a 20-unit apartment bldg. in Hollywood and 2 bldgs. totaling 14 units in Studio City, as well as a the following active listing: a 4-unit bldg. in Toluca Lake. Check out my most recent listing at: http://youtu.be/_aZ7TFaC32M. It's a 3BD/2BA SFH (could rent for $4,500-$5,500/mo.) with a 1BD/1BA townhouse (currently renting for $1,700/mo.). I am also currently in escrow for a 7-unit apartment building in Hollywood for an international buyer and we are scheduled to close by the first week of next month. Please let me know how I can help you find a great investment(s).

By the way, where are you living? Are you originally form Southern California? On boards like this, we sometimes forget to actually find out more information about you, our client. I wish you the best of luck and hope to hear from you soon.

Austin Chen, REALTOR®
Real Estate Investment Specialist
DRE #: 01898306
Office: 323.902.7653
Fax: 323.443.1093
Mobile: 310.948.2629
Email: austinjchen@gmail.com
Website: hrela.com
2 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 20, 2012
By the way, in addition to our brokerage expertise, we also have a property management company (we can manage the property(ies) for you while you are overseas), an off-site escrow company (customer service and responsiveness are paramount), and a property tax reduction division (we'll make sure you are not paying more taxes than you should). Plus, we have numerous strong long-term relationships with property inspectors, mortgage brokers, title reps, and insurance companies. We are as close to a full-service real estate company as you will find.

Have a great day!
Flag Fri Apr 20, 2012
There are some good investment opportunities available.

If you serious i can show you a few very good & secure deals - great properties.

Please call me direct 424-777-9377

Help with Any Real Estate Transaction - Buy or Sell

Call me 424-777-9377 - FREE CONSULTATION!

Should you have any questions - please feel free to call me Toll Free: 1-855-TRUST-55 (1-855-878-7855) ext. 777.

Sergey Fednov

President - Realtor®
- Trust Sale Realty -

Residential & Commercial Real Estate
Toll Free: 1-855-TRUST-55
Toll Free: 1-855-878-7855
Phone: 424-777-9377
Fax: 310-356-4925
- We Hire CA Licensed Real Estate Agents -
Lic# 01896869
2 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 20, 2012
In today real estate market,the better question would be what property would be the better property to invest in. You have ti take into consideration not only location, but what typse of property, i.e., residential, commercial or apartment buildings. Each property is different currently depending why and goals oft the sellers.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Apr 25, 2012

You've received some great responses already regarding your question. I would add that you should find a professional in LA that is experienced in helping you with your purchase. I would also echo what my colleagues have said about appreciation. Your return-on-investment has to make sense upfront. Don't speculate on your return and on potential appreciation.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 20, 2012
Ellis San Jose had a great response, I would re-read that one.

Too add, I would go with the properties that will give you a good cash-on-cash return TODAY and to not bet on appreciation. I think the next 5-10 years there will be a lot of headwinds against appreciation and I would rather have the cash flow TODAY. So sharpen your pencil and run your numbers well.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 20, 2012
I think there will be as many "answers" that are different..as answers that are alike for this question. A good investment is not easy to actually find and purchase. Five years may not be enough time to see an increase on your investment and the recent Real Estate situation should doubly prove that fact.

Since you are living outside the US and you need housing for your family, why not buy a home in an area that has a history of good appreciation. I can think of several neighborhoods that would fit that bill. Remember the better areas with the best schools are in highest demand in any area.

Good Luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 28, 2014
I am a male single parent of 2 and just lost my business.I need to do something asap to bring food to the table for my 12 and 14 year olds. I am just starting a career in realestate and I am already so confused and overwhelmed that my head is spinning. Are there any investors in SouthBay area who can take me on their wings as a mentor or partner? I need assistance!!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 28, 2014
Ikpanja, getting started in real estate is not something that one can count on for reliable income from day one. It takes 1-3 years of hard and diligent work to just scratch the surface of a book of business for most agents. I would recommend that you find a very busy team with high volume. You will make small amounts of money at first, but you will learn on the job. Working with a team will give you some volume to cut your teeth on, with a safety net of more experienced agents who can mentor and supervise you, so that hopefully, you'll not have to learn the ropes the hard way.

Best of luck to you and your family!
Flag Tue Jan 28, 2014
apartment or commercial building in a growing community
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jun 7, 2012
Dear Investca,

In order to assist and advise you accordingly it would be best to have a no obligation
confidential conversation to see how we could best serve your needs. We are an
International Real Estate Company and have a network over 38 Countires including
a base here in California, therefore if I can be of any further assistance my e-mail
is pamela.todd@engelvoelkers.com.

Wishing you every success with your property search.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jun 7, 2012
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jun 7, 2012
Dear Investca,

There are few strategies that you can consider depending on risk tolerance and liquidity needs.
For quick money, buying trustee sale/auction properties will give the highest return in a shortest time. However, the risk is very high.
To make a decent ROI, buy and hold in distressed areas that are adjacent to neighborhoods that have already experienced a signification run-up in prices will most likely give you appreciation potential.
You should also consider tax implications with your capital gains to obtain the true value of your real estate investment.
Look into REO properties that has been sitting in the market for more than 90 days. You might be able to structure a good deal. As an investor, you want to pay no more than 60 cents for a dollar on a property.

Please contact me for a list of pre-foreclosure/auction properties in the area of your interest.

Good luck and wish you prosperity.

Thank you.

Janice DeNuto
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Apr 26, 2012
Jeri Creson, Broker, Studio City, CA
When I invest and flip houses, either on my own, or with an investor partner, I. personally, like the Hollywood Hills, Beverly Hills PO, Encino, Tarzana, Sherman Oaks south of the Blvd. These are communities where a "problem" property that I am in a position to correct for far less than retail can bring huge profits. For example:…one that is non-conforming to the neighborhood, or under utilizes the lot…a house in a very bad condition with a design problem. A really tacky house that has a floor plan that could go sleek and modern…A house that doesn't take proper advantage of an amazing view - or sometimes has a "perceived" problem such as minor slippage that turns out to be $5,000 worth of foundation work, straightening up piers, or correcting a washed out stem wall problem following a leak….not $500,000 worth of geotechnical issues.

These are areas where deals can be had on the right property, and good, quality construction can be achieved (when you know a good crew), resulting in outstanding profits. The values for a very desirable house…a "prestigious" house…a well done, move in ready house, or sometimes, a house that accommodates a family trying to get into certain schools will always hold it's value and offer appreciation opportunities in these neighborhoods. Can you imagine a time when Beverly Hills will go out of fashion? There are greater risks in these neighborhoods, of course, as your initial investment is larger - you'll be picking up a "deal" for well over $500,000 - and it is absolutely necessary to keep your construction costs under control, but that same investment - in the right situation can gain ridiculous appreciation in a short period of time. Many amateur investors make mistakes here, though… the "cache" of the location often will bring inflated bids for construction that are completely unnecessary - because contractors in LA know this: depending on the locale, more often than not, the sheer ego of the owner will allow you to overcharge, and they'll pay it, if only for bragging rights. You can't go "cheap" on construction here - it HAS to be quality, but it doesn't HAVE to be expensive…it just has to feel expensive.

I regularly see kitchens that cost $200,000 that I could have duplicated almost identically for $35,000,,, bathrooms that cost $20,000 that could easily pull off the same design appeal, and offer similar product quality for $8000. The profit is in the construction know how…an eye for good design…and the ability to spot an opportunity. I love to do these projects, and am always open to investment partners who have some time to manage, while I direct, and we both share in the profits.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Apr 26, 2012
Are you looking for long term investment or short term investment?
Are you willing to take a lot of risk little or no risk?
Do you have other objectives like living in the real estate you purchase or is this strictly an investment?
Call me for free consultation
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Apr 25, 2012
Investca, there are many good suggestions from other agents here. I just would like to emphasize that the ideal property to invest in would be: 1. the property in the better locations with the highest rent. 2. Hence income property in the greater Los Angeles area, specifically near the beach or on the beach would make sense, Playa Del Rey, Marina Del Rey, Venice and El Segundo to name a few.
Southern California Beach communities are a magnet for tenants from all over the world and they command a higher lease per square foot than many of the other communities.

Should you need help. Feel free to reach out to me for direct advice at homes@endrebarath.com or call me cell 310.486.1002.

Endre Barath,Jr.
Beverly Hills-Coldwell Banker- S
Web Reference: http://www.endrebarath.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Apr 25, 2012
Great locations, unfortunately, they will rarely cash flow because of the premium prices.
Flag Wed Apr 25, 2012
Location is very important, along with other factors. You must decide as why you are looking for land only. Inj the next five years, inflation will propably occur, which brings the value up. However, if you buy property that wil bring you income, as well, it will help you to not only maintain the property, but perhaps make a profit yearly. I believe in todays market one must look at many more factors than just sitting on property for the next five years. If you do so, ask yourself what else can make your property aid you in the investment factor.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Apr 25, 2012
In today real estate market,the better question would be what property would be the better property to invest in. You have ti take into consideration not only location, but what typse of property, i.e., residential, commercial or apartment buildings. Each property is different currently depending why and goals oft the sellers.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Apr 25, 2012
In today real estate market,the better question would be what property would be the better property to invest in. You have ti take into consideration not only location, but what typse of property, i.e., residential, commercial or apartment buildings. Each property is different currently depending why and goals oft the sellers.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Apr 25, 2012
Have you considered a HOMEPATH property? http://www.homepath.com The best part of a HOMEPATH home is you can put as little as 10% down (as an investor), AND there is NO mortgage insurance.

Kinecta Federal Credit Union (a not-for-profit direct lender) is one of few HOMEPATH lenders in the country, with a presence in California.

Hope this helps!

Rene Joseph De Blanco
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 24, 2012
Dear Investca,

The best deals/returns for the next 5 years will be in an area that has held it's value in the recent housing crisis. Location, location, location stands true. Los Angeles' Westside markets including Santa Monica, Brentwood, Mar Vista, Venice, Culver City and Marina del Rey have held values very well. Due to proximity to the beach, schools, and walking areas your best investment would be an area that offers these to potential tenants, and maintain your property value.

Hope this is helpful for you. If you need our services in any of the areas I mentioned, we're here for you.


0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 24, 2012
Depending on your experience and time and effort you are willing to devote to the looking process; rehab, construction, multi-familty, SFR, management, any can be profitable but experience will dictate the outcome. You need to make money going in if you plan on making money on your exit. Are you able to make quick decisions on offers(highly competitive market with plenty of all cash buyers), leverage(if any), unless you have considerable patience and deep pockets building in Los Angeles is very stressful, if you are looking at a land bank, beware, most of the builders buying land are experienced and make their money going in as well. Know your strengths, have your priorities in order and you will make the right decisions. There are knowledgeable brokers but there are more internet experts who know nothing about about real estate, find a good broker and concentrate your buying efforts with that choice. There is always Portugal, plenty of good deals near the water.
Don Kamlager/Broker
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 24, 2012
There are areas in Califoirnia that have brand new homes for under $150 K. These are not in Los Angeles but are only about an hour away. Please feel free to give me a call if you are interested. 714-357-5066
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Apr 21, 2012
are you intrested in los angeles county, price range , roi, arv?

Let me know
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 20, 2012
Multi units in SFV and Long Beach are my favorites for the term you are looking for. It is very low priced now; rent is high and going up and value will appreciate . Contact me for more info as I need to know more about you to plan or advice properly.
I work with investors out of the country and understand it very well.
Have a great day!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 20, 2012
A few segments are very competitive, go for the road less traveled. I would be happy to help.
Janey Bishop
Rodeo Realty - The Signature Team
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 20, 2012
Neal Grusky, Agent, Santa Monica, CA HI,
I work with many investors. This is how i got my start. Unlike many other agents out there, I was an investor long before I was an agent, so I know this market well. I encourage my clients to look for investments opportunites in 2-4 multifamily, and entry levels home (200-500k ), this is where the best and quickest rate of return lies. I work with several lenders that have many of these foreclosure opportunites, as well as probate, and trust sales. Feel free to call me or email anytime.
Talk to you soon!

Neal Grusky
DRE# 01890580
Hpremiere Properties
Real Estate and Financing
10940 Wilshire Blvd. Suite 1600,
LA, CA 90024 | Office:
(800) 652-1768
| Fax: (800) 652-7604 http://www.hpremiereproperties.com
0 votes • Comment • Flag • Delete • A moment ago .
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 20, 2012
Real Estates are really a good options to invest in, but there are other options too. The market which is gaining it's popularity day by day and the interest is been drastic regarding the market. Forex is the biggest financial market where trillions of dollars are being traded everyday and this creates business opportunities. So options are in front of people just matter what to select and to go with it.
Web Reference: http://www.gtoptions.com/
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 20, 2012
Hi Investca,

I work with many people that do this and have access to deals all over. Please feel free to contact me at your earliest convenience and I'd be happy to discuss with you this process and what I can do for you.

Andrew Demirchyan
Keller Williams Realty
7920 W Sunset Blvd, #100
Los Angeles CA 90046
P: (818) 919-2018
F: (888) 214-7552
DRE License #01816257
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 20, 2012
If you are looking to make money by flipping, I would say the best money is in flipping homes that will turn into entry level housing. ($300-500k in LA proper) There is an overwealming demand for nice turn key homes in these ranges and plenty of approved and ready buyers. Turn an old dump into a stylish and modernized home for the enthusiastic young buyer and you are good to go. In order to be really profitable though, you need to have a VERY trustworthy contractor who is experienced and knowledgable, and also have a keen eye for how to red model a home within the tastes of the modern young first time buyer. Oh yea, and buying all cash is key. You get the best deals and don't have to pay interest while working on the house.

If you are looking for a property that will make money for the long term you can't go wrong with 2-4 units in a good area. $750k will get you a long way into a positive cash flow situation for sure. If I had that kind of cash I would be doing this. By a nice duplex or triplex and create a nice owners unit and rent the rest. Done right and you can be living off the rental income from your initial investment.

As far as single family homes, you have a substantial amount to put down and could get yourself a 50% loan on a $1mil home and leave $250 to invest in another arena. Your mtg would be only $500k which would put you at around $3000/mo for a $1mil home, which is way less than you can even find a comparable home for rent. I feel this is a smart way to invest in a home because you create an equity rich position from the get go and in doing so you limit the out of pocket monthly by a big amount, also you limit the amount of interest you pay in the long term, thus increasing the strength of your investment over the long term.

Hope that is helpful!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 20, 2012
Are you looking to flip homes, buy as rentals & be a landlord, or purchase multi-family properties? There are 1000's of deals it just depends on what your intentions are.


Brian L. Mitry, SVP
Pacific Coast Properties
10 Universal City Plaza, 20th Floor
Universal City, CA 91608
P: 323.823.7770
F: 323.784.2300
W: http://www.greaterlaluxuryhomes.com
DRE# 01414124
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 20, 2012
My intentions are to make the best ROI. I am willing to do any of the above but I see the low cap rates in LA on Multis, the expensive SFH and wonder where is the best place to invest?
Flag Fri Apr 20, 2012
Hello Investca,

I have several land listings in the Los Angeles area that may work for you. Land is in high demand this year. Contact me for listings that are not yet on the market.

Fernando Lara
(213) 324-2152
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 20, 2012
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