Investing in Upstate New York: A Strategic Approach to Real Estate

Flipping Houses | Posted On: 04.01.24

The real estate market is as diverse and complex as the landscapes it encompasses. In the Fearless Future podcast episode with Glenn and Amber, the hosts explore the nuances of investing in upstate New York’s real estate market and uncover why this often-overlooked region could hold the key to a successful investment strategy.

Key Takeaways:

The Economic Stability of Upstate New York

One of the first themes that Glenn and Amber tackle is the economic resilience of upstate New York. Unlike other parts of the country that experienced dramatic booms and busts, this region maintained a steady economic course, even during the 2008 financial crisis.

“The reason I think it’s such a unique place to invest, one of the big reasons is the economy never took a hit,” Glenn explains, attributing this stability to a strong government employment base. With the totality of state workers reaching approximately 51,000 within the capital district, job security translates into a more predictable real estate market.

Another pillar reinforcing this region’s economic balance is the healthcare sector. Hospitals like Albany Med and St. Peter’s not only act as major employers but also are less affected by economic downturns as “people still get sick, and there’s still insurance money coming in.” A plethora of educational institutions further anchor the local economy, providing a constant influx of students and keeping certain property sectors in demand.

Analyzing the local economy in-depth emphasizes the lesser-known side of real estate: investment strategies can rely on more than just market trends. An area’s employment makeup can significantly safeguard investments from the kind of volatility seen elsewhere.

The Importance of Local Insight in Real Estate

Glenn and Amber also stress the importance of knowing one’s market from within. “Being able to have boots on the ground…and the local information,” Amber notes, is an irreplaceable advantage. They speak from their personal experience of getting started in their local market, citing local contacts and knowledge of subtleties, like the dramatic value shifts from one street to the next, as instrumental in their success.

For those starting in real estate, tapping into this local wisdom could mean the difference between choosing a lucrative project or a financial pitfall. The hosts remind listeners that, while long-distance investing is possible, nothing quite matches the efficacy of being able to personally oversee projects and network within the community to find deals and potential lenders.

Navigating Price Points and Competition

Another valued aspect of the upstate New York market discussed by Glenn and Amber is the accessible price points for investment properties. They reminisce about buying houses for as little as a dollar and regularly acquiring properties that only require cosmetic upgrades due to their “good bones.”

This accessibility allows investors to aim for the high-demand market segment of first-time homebuyers. By providing custom finishes akin to more expensive homes, such as granite countertops and tiling, they can meet a critical market need without competing against heavyweight investors, as the hosts point out that big hedge funds tend to generally avoid the area due to less favorable landlord laws.

Moreover, a large segment of homes in upstate New York are inherited or vacated by an aging population making way for a younger generation. This demographic shift can provide a consistent stream of fixer-upper opportunities for savvy investors willing to do the work.

Throughout this discussion, there’s a clear pattern of looking deeper into the market. The hosts highlight a need not only to understand property purchase prices but also to consider the end buyer and to find niches unserved by larger entities.

Investing in real estate in upstate New York, as elucidated by Glenn and Amber, is a lesson in the importance of grounding one’s strategy in local economic stability, insights, and competition dynamics. These elements reveal a nuanced understanding of what building a real estate portfolio involves – more than just buying and selling property but creating value that resonates with the local populace and stands against the test of market fluctuations.

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