Lakeland FL Homes Can Make Great Investments
This question was posed by someone recently on Trulia, a popular website for people looking for real estate: “Is Lakeland a good area for an investment property? I am looking for a steady monthly rental income.”
My answer is yes. I agree with several property managers and real estate agents who replied to the question by suggesting areas such as south Lakeland and locations in Winter Haven near LEGOLAND.
I would also add Bartow to the list of good investment areas because it’s a small city and many investors tend to forget about it. Lakeland is a hotbed for investors right now, and that has created a seller’s market.
But when it comes to investment properties listed below $100,000, nearly everywhere in Polk County is a hotbed. It is common to receive multiple offers right now for listings in this price range. I recently worked with someone on a short sale property in Winter Haven that received nine offers.
So how do you increase the chances of your offer being accepted over other offers? Hire a real estate agent or an attorney. These professionals can tell you if you’re not offering enough, or if you’re offering too much. They also perform all the necessary due diligence work to make sure the property you’re considering as an investment is a good property. A real estate agent can conduct a comparative market analysis to make sure you don’t overpay.
Don’t buy on the courthouse steps. You might think you’ve bought something for a steal, but there can be hidden fees such as liens that would have been easily identified by an agent or attorney. We have resources and support teams we work with to do title searches.
They say cash is king, and I mostly agree with that statement- unless you have a great working relationship with a bank that can loan you money right away, should you find a great investment opportunity. If multiple offers are the same, but one offer is cash, sometimes the seller will go with the cash offer.
I would be remiss if I didn’t devote a few words to investment properties elsewhere, particularly in the Caribbean. I get questions about this occasionally. The truth is if you can afford the real estate, investing in island property can be a wise move. I recently happened upon a great blog post on the top five places to buy Caribbean real estate. According to this post, they are:
- Trinidad and Tobago
- Dominican Republic
- Roatan/Corn Islands
Let’s say you opt to purchase homes or villas in Curacao or Aruba. These are destinations that people love to visit. For example, Europeans flock to Curacao during the winter. If you own property there, you can negotiate with property management firms on the island to see that it gets rented to visitors while you’re not using it. This is a great way to enable your investment to pay for itself, yet still be available for your own vacation use when you want it.
Regardless of where you buy, I’m a firm believer than if properly researched, real estate is a great investment option. If you would like help locating an investment property in Lakeland, call me. I can help.