Let me try. I think schools makes sense when you are looking at for your primary residence. You want the best neighborhood since that’s where you will be walking around. But for investment property, “A” neighborhood like these are already expensive hence you get less ROI. On the other end, you got “D” neighborhood aka warzone. You are not even safe to go and collect rent. And tenants willing to live there might be some you might need to evict them time to time. But cash flow might be really good if you can make it work. So that leaves “B” and “C”. That’s where I want to be. I want to be in those with “B-” or “C+” to hope that “C+” will turn into “B+” in 5 - 10 years and meanwhile you are making a decent cash flow out of it. I don’t think schools or schools demographic can give me that information, data is not that much different among schools and things could be different from block to block. That’s where I need local experts who really know the area. I could drive for dollar, but I don’t really have times or want to take that risk that I might end up in some streets that I shouldn’t be.
Having a trustworthy local expert helps a lot. You can also do some homework looking at the crime map. Obviously stay away from places where gun violence is rampant. I really only bought two houses in B/C neighborhoods. Both times I feel comfortable to have my family live in there. I guess that’s my threshold. I need to feel safe enough I don’t mind my whole family moving in.
One trick I use is to look at people’s cars. If you see lots of Lexus and Mercedes no worry then. If you see 5 or 6 junkers parking on overgrown front lawns then maybe do a bit more research. In fact that’s one trick my coworker taught me. Stay away from neighborhood with more than 3 or 4 cars per house.
Based on my experience looking in Oakland none of the schools are good - especially when you get to middle/high school - and the neighborhoods that are most popular / seem to be appreciating a lot aren’t in the even OK school areas either - I think it’s more based on proximity to BART, overall neighborhood vibe (restaurants, etc.)
As our fearless Master Manch would respond, there are no stupid questions. All questions by members of this forum are legit, unless you are asking about Tela Tubbies.
You are not missing anything. Some investors like to “stick” to areas where schools are already established and good. Examples would be like Cupertino or Palo Alto, where the public schools are top notch, however, the drawback of course is that the housing prices tend to follow along in step. Others like to hunt in those diamond in the rough areas where yes the current state of the schools may not be as great (at all) but may be rising. Those investors are “betting” that over time that the corresponding lower housing prices there will rise along with the school ratings. The example I have used before would be Fremont where you have a lot of young professionals moving in to those more affordable, non prime neighborhoods (non Mission San Jose) and over time of course hopefully they will help raise those scores due in part to their participation and interest in their kid’s education. Tiger moms would apply here. And that was what my actual tenant told me, that they understood my home does not feed to the prime schools but they weren’t concerned yet (young kids) and they felt they could impact the schools positively going forward. You are correct that no one can honestly predict exactly what will happen but keep in mind that this is only one variable. There are other variables to consider as well to help you make an educated decision on whether to buy or not. One thing for sure, there are fewer and fewer really cheap areas around here (immediate Bay Area) so chances are that those areas will probably not remain that way for long (unless, again, some real issues that can not be changed for example a house right next to the freeway or a housing project).
Follow the Asians. Anywhere they start moving in large numbers the schools improve.
Thank you for the tips. I look at gardens in the neighborhood.
I used to buy based purely on schools, even for rentals. So I have mostly Class A houses in my portfolio. Then I realized many people optimize commute time, not schools. Since then I pay more attention to Bart stations and such.
For Oakland I am monitoring the area bordering San Leandro. @sfdragonboy posted a newspaper article about the area east of 98th. Rent seems to be good and price subdued. Another area I like is the Union City and Newark area. But that’s a purely appreciation play. Cashflow is at best neutral.
I have long liked Daly City. I actually want to move there myself but my wife kiboshed the idea. With SF price going thru the roof it doesn’t take Einstein to figure out DC price will go up as well.
Come on, OB1, cars don’t tell much at all to me. My big bro drove a POS before and parked it in his drive up driveway of his Saratoga home as a medal of honor and to thumb his nose at his snotty neighbors. Even you yourself revealed (I believe) that you drove a Honda. Remember, people can easily lease cars and quite frankly it tends to be the folks who DON’T have money that tend to value nice cars, nice sneakers, etc.
Millionaires driving Honda’s are a minority, OK? That’s why people write books about them. I decided to buy a SF property mostly because of the neighbors’ fancy cars.
Who doesn’t like nice cars. The real issue is just that they are not reliable. That’s why smart people, even if they have some money to play with, don’t go for Jags for example. Believe me, I learned my lesson with a SL. My neighbor had a very nice, beautiful special edition M5 (I believe V10?) but got rid of it due to the constant downtime more so than anything else. Last night, another guy left a note on my ultra cool (imho) CRX Si to see if I want to sell it. That means more to me than some cookie cutter Lexus or BMW that everyone and their mother has.
I remember dating after college. Women that age wanted to know what a guy drove. They didn’t really care where he lived as long as it wasn’t with parents. It was clearly a broken filtering mechanism for measuring a guy’s success.
I hve owned fancy cars, now I just want reliable cars. .I have become my dad…he said they are just a wagon with an engine…They are just for your ego after basic transportation is met…
Not to get into trouble with our sig others (females), but I have told my nephews that they need to step up their games in today’s competitive work and courtship world. Women are not going to care one bit what you drive but they will care about what your career aspirations are and frankly how capable you are in being a good provider to them. You could be Brad Pitt’s twin brother but if you are flipping burgers no real good woman will want you for a long term relationship. Hey, just keeping it real here. Don’t report me to Uncle Manch…
Men are (sometimes) not stupid. They want things that can get themselves laid. I am sure fancy cars help in that regard. Whether that’s “long term” relationship or not, I don’t know. But maybe these guys are not that into long terms to begin with…
Women look for 4Cs:
[quote=“hanera, post:36, topic:286, full:true”]
Women look for 4Cs:
CareerCarCredit CardCash and dont forget Condo
Many women just want a cute bad boy…Don’t need any of those things if you just want to get laid…
Uh, those were not the 4C’s that came to mind when deciding on that lil rock… cash maybe… how much cash i have to fork over…
In Singapore condo is replaced by Penthouse or Landed.