Hey I used to live in your area before I moved up here. So... let me take a swing at your question and see if I can answer it because I think I can compare areas here with the area you are from now.
If you are looking for an investment that's located in a good school district then you want to look at Folsom, El Dorado Hills, Granite Bay, Roseville and Rocklin because they have school districts on par with Cupertino, Saratoga, Sunnyvale and the Palo Alto areas.
The homes in those areas are relatively new so you can avoid some of the maintenance issues you might come up with in the older areas up here.
Rents will vary of course depending on the number of bedrooms and the size of the house you want to invest in.
We do property management in the area as well. In Folsom, we just leased up a 4 bedroom, 3 bath for $2,350, a 2 bedroom + bonus room/ 2 bath condo over looking a nature preserve and golf course for $2,000, a 5 bedroom, 3 bath for $2,300. In Granite Bay we're leasing up a 2 bedroom 2 bath Duplex unit for $1,195.
If you are curious about potential rents of a home you've been scoping out, you can check out the websites at "rentometer.com" and "padmapper.com" which will give you some clues as to the possible rental income.
I don't know if you've been up here to take a peek at homes, but If you haven't, then you owe it to yourself to take a drive up here to get a feel for the area.
Drive by some of the neighborhoods, check out the work centers, the schools, the parks and other amenities the neighborhoods up here offer while you are looking for that perfect investment.
I hope this helps...
In the mean time...? Make it a Great Day...
You can search other California cities from that link as well.
Rents are higher of course in the higher ranked school areas. Prices are higher, too.
Which came first? The higher priced homes, wealthier parents and higher tax base, or the higher ranked schools based on student testing performance. These neighborhood characteristics are highly correlated.
For a 1800 square foot home 3 bedrooms 2 baths in El Dorado Hills, Folsom, or Roseville. I estimate $1750 to $1800 per month for rent. Such an average home would be priced between $300,000 to $350,000. More for a home with a pool and more for larger 4 and 5 bedroom homes.
This is a common question and an important one when considering a home purchase. If you use the internet to research schools you will be pleased at how much you can learn. You will find stats for scores, teacher ratios, curriculum and parent comments. Sacramento and the surrounding areas have some high ranked public schools and some not so highly ranked. With budget cuts, some parents are finding the public schools are not up to their standards and are considering other options such as homeschooling and private schools.
If you are approaching your home search from a school district perspective, I highly recommend you actually visit the schools and sit in on some classes. This is a good way to see if the school is a good fit for your child. I personally found this to be a way to quickly decide whether or not my kids would thrive in a certain learning environment.
This is a great time to buy and you will find that your monthly mortgage can be less or equal to rent. If you are interested in more information about why this is a good time to buy or how to qualify just let me know.
As a rough average, you can figure $1.00 to $1.50 per square foot for market rent in many areas here. A 1500 Sq. ft. home would rent for apprx. $1500. I am a Realtor who helps people buy and sell homes though, not a rent expert.
There are many excellent schools in our area. Here is a link to start your research:
North Natomas and Elk Grove area schools have great reputations. So does Roseville, Rocklin, Folsom.
At my suggested 1500 sq. ft., you can own for what you'll pay for rent. Larger homes could be a better deal if renting. BUT, our market is very busy. Its a great time to buy, and get in while prices are at the bottom. It appears that values are starting to slowly start the upward climb.
Let me know if you need further help, and good luck!