Today’s topic is where to buy investment property in the Contra Costa area. People ask me this quite a bit, and they are usually surprised at how I answer.

Most people who are looking to buy investment property are an open book, especially if they are not very experienced as real estate investors. They want to be told what to do. Usually, I ask several questions to find out exactly what they are looking for and why they want to invest in a rental home. In most cases, the investors want the same things; they want maximum appreciation on the property, they want positive cash flow and of course they want the nicest home on the block. These are all good goals, and you can achieve them with your rental property as long as you invest in the right areas.

When my investors ask me where to buy, I tell them honestly what I would do if I was buying a rental property. The first thing I do is recommend staying away from Walnut Creek. It’s a great area, but you are not going to be able to buy a home for less than $500,000 or $600,000. Depending on how much money you put down and what the terms of your mortgage happen to be, it’s going to be very difficult to get any cash flow from that property as a rental. However, if you go a little bit further to the east, to an area such as Pittsburg, you can probably buy two homes for the same price as you would get one home in Walnut Hill. Why buy one home when you can get two for the price of one? Rents in this area are lower, but not bad for a standard three bedroom, two bath home. It’s a good part of the county and you’ll have two properties appreciating in value and bringing in rent every month.

I always enjoy working with people who start their search in one area and then take my advice to consider other areas. It’s fun and the investors are always happy with the properties they end up owning. I have a saying that I always share with real estate investors: don’t wait to buy real estate; buy real estate and wait.

If you have any questions or you need help choosing an investment property, please contact us at Stokley Properties.