I own rental properties in Durham, Chapel Hill and Carrboro. If I were buying now, between these 3 locations I would buy in Durham. Morrisville, Brier Creek, Cary, are all very popular though Durham is the hot city right now. It is best to look at rental properties as a long-term investment strategy because it isn't easy to get a quick return. One of the other things I do and advise is to improve the property so that you create more equity and higher rents.
I'm always happy to discuss this because I love real estate investment. I've made mistakes, done well, and a whole range in between.
Vivian, aka CrazyViv