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The 10 Best Cities to Invest in Real Estate—Ranked!

Foreign investors continue their infatuation with the American real estate market. Even though there was a slight drop in foreign investors over the last year, it wasn’t because of a lack of interest.

Inventory is tight, which drives up demand, and prices. Some investors found it hard to find the right property.

There are many investors interested in American real estate, but not all of them are successful. Some don’t do their homework and others don’t know the best city to invest in real estate.

They just assume that they have a good property based on a city’s reputation alone. That’s not enough to build wealth in real estate.

There’s a lot to uncover when you’re looking for the best places to invest in real estate. Don’t fret because this article has you covered.

Keep reading to learn the top 10 best places to invest in real estate.

1. Charlotte, NC

Charlotte is one of the best places to invest in thanks to the business-friendly environment. It’s actually one of the top financial cities, right behind New York.

It’s easy to start a business there, which contributes to economic diversity. It doesn’t rely on a single industry, which means that the economy has a greater chance of stability, even when the economy goes south.

For real estate investors, property values are affordable but increasing. They’re not increasing so much that you’ll get priced out of the market, either.

Roughly half of the population in Charlotte are renters, which means that you’ll be able to make a nice rental property investment there.

2. Raleigh/Durham, NC

The Raleigh/Durham area of North Carolina is thought of as a college town. There are 10 big-name colleges there, including NC State, Duke, and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

The area is also known for the Research Triangle, where there are 7,000 companies in science, tech, health, and manufacturing.

It has a lot of similar advantages that Charlotte has for investors. This area was one of the few in the entire country that did well even during the 2008 economic crisis.

Home values climbed steadily, but the area is still very affordable with a high quality of life.

3. Las Vegas, NV

There’s so much more to Las Vegas than the casino industry. Yes, the gaming and tourism industries play critical roles in the local economy, but there is a lot happening under the surface.

The business environment in Nevada is very friendly. It’s one of the best places to start a new business, which attracts some high-paying jobs to the area. The health and tech industries are among the fastest-growing in the area.

What makes Las Vegas one of the best cities to invest in real estate is that home values continue to rise. It’s definitely a booming market.

You do need to be aware that the local market took a huge hit in 2008. The economy looks more stable since then, but you should consider that before investing.

On the positive side, the number of renters in the city continues to increase. It’ll be easier to fill your properties with good tenants.

4. Orlando, FL

Did you know that Florida is one of the top places for foreign investments? About 22% of foreign purchases are in Florida. It’s no wonder when you look at the quality of life and low cost of living there.

Orlando offers all real estate investors a lot because of its proximity to Walt Disney World. You can rent properties to tourists, but you can go for long-term rentals as well.

Most of the population rents, property is still inexpensive, and home values are rising consistently. More people are moving into the area for jobs outside of the tourism industry.

5. Miami, FL

If you’re an experienced investor and you want to upgrade your portfolio, it’s time to explore luxury real estate investments.

High-end real estate in places like Manhattan and Miami offer investors a higher level of renters. They’re more reliable and you’ll have less turnover.

Luxury real estate is a great way to continue to build wealth. Miami real estate is in demand and the luxury market continues to grow.

Even the condo market appreciates in Miami! Check out sites like for luxury properties.

6. Atlanta, GA

If you’re interested in fixer-uppers, this is a great market for you. That’s not just because the TV show makes it look easy.

Atlanta has many homes that you can get for a minimal cost. Rehab them and resell them for a nice profit.

Atlanta makes this list because of steady employment and population growth. There are several Fortune 500 companies in the area.

Atlanta also has a high percentage of renters, so if you want to buy a rental property, this is a great market to do that as well.

7. Columbus, OH

Many investors don’t think about cities in the Rust Belt for investments, but Columbus is an exception.

For starters, landlord-tenant laws are more favorable to landlords than to renters. The median price of a home is $232,000. It’s still affordable for many investors, though the competition is fierce in this market.

The area has a lower cost of living compared to other cities in the area. Combine that with a low unemployment rate, and this is a desirable city.

8. San Antonio, TX

There are a couple of factors that make San Antonio one of the best cities to invest in. The first is that the economy is stable and has been for a long time.

The second is that it’s a seller’s market. That drives many people to rent as opposed to buy. That increases rental values in the city.

If you can buy a property with cash and are willing to pay above the asking price, you can land a coveted investment property.

The city has a younger and professional population than the average city in the U.S. That means stable rental income for years.

9. Austin, TX

Drive a little bit to the north, and you’ll run into Austin. The city gave tax breaks to companies like Tesla, Apple, and Samsung to set up offices there. Austin attracted artists and creatives, making it a vibrant city.

There’s always something to do in the city and the cost of living there is low. All of these things increased the population over the last several years.

Home prices rose about $100,000 in just six months there. It’s going to continue to rise, so if you’re planning on investing there, do it now.

10. Spokane, WA

Way on the eastern side of Washington, close to the Idaho border is Spokane. It’s an overlooked area, but it’s full of promise.

The area is home to many industries, from mining to biotech. Real estate is still affordable, but that may change soon. As Seattle and Portland become unaffordable, people flock to Spokane.

Real estate is still affordable there for now. Grab an affordable property now before you miss your chance.

Criteria for Evaluating the Best City to Invest in Real Estate

What makes a good real estate investment? It depends on your goals.

For real estate investors who want to capitalize on the rental market, you’ll look at a certain set of criteria. You want to see a strong, diverse economy. Population growth and a high rent vs. own percentage are essential factors as well.

Of course, an affordable price and the ability to earn regular rental income are essential.

Let’s say that you prefer to list your property as a short-term rental. That changes the criteria completely. You’re going to depend on a strong tourism sector for income.

You’ll have to look at a city’s short-term rental regulations. This is important because many cities are regulating Airbnb rentals. They want to make these rentals more equitable with hotels, so they’ll add taxes on.

Some cities have a complete ban on these types of vacation rentals, too.

You’ll want to look at a city’s hotel occupancy rate, as this is a good indicator of your ability to rent a property. You’ll also need to calculate your vacation rental income to ensure profitability.

Be sure to take into account the offseason, when you’ll see a drop in income.

Ready to Invest in Real Estate?

There’s no doubt that this is a great time for real estate investors. The market is hot, and you could easily pay too much for a property with little return.

It’s important to know which are the best cities are to invest in real estate. The ones listed in this article are among the best ones.

Which is the best city to invest in real estate? It depends on your real estate goals. Apply the right criteria to make sure you’ll make money from your investments.

For more great real estate tips, be sure to check out the other articles on this site.