7 Places to Buy Property for Big Profits in the Next Decade

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Laredo, Texas
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As home prices continue to soar in markets across the country, investors may be seeing dollar signs. Anyone who purchased a property prior to the COVID-19 pandemic has probably seen its value appreciate significantly in recent years. In fact, owner-occupied housing wealth increased $9 trillion between the first quarter of 2020 and the first quarter of 2022.

If you missed out on getting into the real estate market prior to the pandemic, it’s not too late to buy property now to maximize your profits in 10 years. The key is to look for areas where prices are still relatively affordable but expected to grow in the future.

“The one thing that’s difficult about real estate investments is that information is vague,” says Dominic DeRose, managing director of Cresset Real Estate Partners, where he is focused on investments in Qualified Opportunity Zones, the industrial sector and logistics.

While there is no crystal ball and no guarantee of gains, the following markets might be good options for real estate investors looking to buy and hold properties over the next decade.

Gatlinburg, Tennessee

Gatlinburg, Tennessee
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When talking about rental properties, the first things to come to mind may be single family homes, duplexes and the like. However, those are far from the only investment options.

“The asset class I’ve been most excited about is short-term rentals,” says Chuckie Reddy, partner and head of growth investments with QED Investors, a venture capital firm. “This is the new wave of what people want to do,” he tells Money Talks News.

Platforms such as Airbnb and Vrbo make it easy to market properties while resources such as AirDNA provide research tools that allow investors to evaluate which regions are best for short-term rentals. Reddy says the key is to look for markets that aren’t already saturated.

Gatlinburg, Tennessee, might be one market to investigate. According to AirDNA, Gatlinburg scores 96 out of 100 when it comes to how the market is performing for short-term rentals. The mountain town attracts visitors year-round for skiing, rafting, hiking and a variety of local attractions. Properties in Gatlinburg earn median revenue of $69,000 per year, AirDNA says.

Savannah, Georgia

Savannah, Georgia
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Real estate investors also shouldn’t overlook types of property that aren’t residential. DeRose says coastal ports are areas that could see demand increase in coming years, and he points to Savannah, Georgia, as one example.

“It’s a hugely growing port for container ships,” DeRose tells Money Talks News. That fact may spur the need for additional industrial facilities. “Building warehouses makes a lot of sense,” he says.

In addition to being a busy port town, Savannah is looking to add manufacturing jobs in 2024 with some expecting employment in the sector to jump 10%. Companies such as Hyundai and Gulfstream are expanding their facilities, which may, in turn, drive up demand for employee housing and fuel growth in rental prices.

Laredo, Texas

Laredo, Texas
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When it comes to investing in real estate, Nelya Calev has this advice: “Look for states that are landlord friendly.” The real estate broker and investor says Texas is one of those states.

While landlords will pay property tax in Texas, they don’t have to contend with rent controls or potentially onerous eviction policies.

“What we look for is population growth and future population growth,” DeRose says. “The Sunbelt is generally a good place for growth.”

Laredo, in particular, in primed to see significant growth during the next decade. The Port of Laredo was the busiest port in the U.S. in 2023 with more than $300 billion worth of goods passing through it. Investors looking to cash in on this growing area may want to look into the Neighborhood Empowerment Zone, a program that offers incentives for development.

Huntsville, Alabama

Huntsville Alabama cityscape skyline
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Huntsville, Alabama, has seen tremendous growth in recent years, and that is expected to continue in 2024 with high demand for single-family housing. There has been growth throughout the city, and Calev says what often happens in growing cities is that hedge funds will swoop in and scoop up properties.

Her advice to individual investors is to look outside of large growing metros. She may consider communities as far as 45 minutes outside the downtown with the understanding that many workers may live there and commute.

“As long as jobs and economic growth is there, you’re pretty safe,” Calev tells Money Talks News. She personally scouts out locations before making an investment. “Restaurants are the best places to get intel,” she shares. Servers and bartenders are often happy to chat about topics such as the hot local neighborhoods and economic health of an area.

Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota

Minneapolis Minnesota
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Minnesota hasn’t seen the same boom and bust cycle as some hot metros, such as Phoenix, and that can make it appealing to investors.

“Everything is a little less volatile,” says Mark Mason, team leader of The Mason Team at Re/Max Professionals in Cottage Grove, Minnesota, and a real estate investor himself. “To me, that buys a sense of security.”

In the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul, the fastest growing suburbs are Lakeville, Woodbury and Bloomington, according to Mason. While not everyone agrees, he sees the potential for profits by purchasing office space in desirable locations.

“You make all your money when you buy (property),” Mason tells Money Talks News. Many office buildings are selling for bargain prices thanks to the move to remote work during the pandemic. However, as businesses return to traditional work environments, investments in office space may pay off.

Salt Lake City, Utah

Salt Lake City, Utah
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An aging population and a desire to minimize taxes: “These are the driving forces that are going to create growth in the next six to 10 years,” says Ed Fernandez, president and CEO of 1031 Crowdfunding, a real estate investing platform.

While Utah is only moderately tax-friendly for retirees, according to finance site SmartAsset, it is expected to see its aging population double by 2060. That makes Salt Lake City a prime spot to consider for investments in senior living communities.

Of course, the need for additional assisted living and memory care units isn’t just limited to Utah. Demand will likely grow in metros across the nation. In addition to Salt Lake City, 1031 Crowdfunding is focused on opportunities in Houston, Denver, Miami and Palm Beach, Florida.

“These are areas we are looking to take advantage of tax friendly and business friendly [policies],” Fernandez tells Money Talks News.

Los Angeles

Houses in a gated neighborhood in Los Angeles, Caifornia
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The pricey City of Angels may seem like an unlikely place to find real estate bargains, but an analysis by StorageCafe, a storage space marketplace, found Los Angeles offers the best deals on fixer upper properties.

“Purchasing a fixer-upper remains a viable option for many cash-strapped buyers looking to secure a property in a prime location,” writes Mirela Mohan, StorageCafe real estate editor, in emailed comments. “While turnkey homes (in Los Angeles) are priced at around $1.9 million, a fixer-upper typically asks for around $1 million.”

Even at that reduced price, investing in Los Angeles won’t be for everyone. However, for those who want to own investment property in the nation’s second largest city, now might be the time to buy. StorageCafe reports 26% of active home listings in Los Angeles are currently fixer uppers.

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