Find me one person under the age of 10 who doesn’t utilize some type of computing device. I’m even hard-pressed to think of one of my 89-year-old Mom’s friends who doesn’t own a smartphone or a tablet. Information technology pervades almost everything imaginable. With double-digit industry growth expected to forge on through 2026, it’s no wonder cities get amped up when Amazon announces that locale as one of the finalists for its “HQ2,” the sister site of the company’s Seattle headquarters.
I got really excited too when the capital of Indiana made the online retailer’s cut. I’ve bought and sold homes as a business in the Hoosier State metropolis for a couple decades now, and so I have to keep a close eye on Indianapolis real estate market trends. The recent buzz about Amazon has only added to an already stable market climate in the Circle City so I can hardly wait to see what the future holds—especially for projected boosts in median rents and home values.
Real Estate Market Trends in Indianapolis Neighborhoods
Indy has treated me and other investors well. When the financial crisis of 2009 struck, home values didn’t suffer as much as those in other areas of the country. Now, with Amazon taking notice of what the city has to offer, Indianapolis is routinely seen as a growing tech hub, joining the ranks of Austin, Nashville, Pittsburgh, and the like. Despite a broadly growing market, it’s still important to focus on the best neighborhoods for real estate investment. Here’s where I’m pursuing the deals right now.
Broad Ripple Village
When the workday ends, people need a place to unwind. Trendy neighborhoods such as Broad Ripple Village appeal to folks who enjoy living within walking distance to restaurants, night spots, and eclectic shops. Walkability especially draws Millennials who want to work and play in the same area. And, the recent influx of technology jobs has been attracting young professionals to this north-central Indianapolis spot.
Developers have taken notice of Broad Ripple’s popularity as well. New construction of multi-unit properties in the neighborhood will provide accommodation for a couple thousand residents. Units command solid rents and, compared to other Midwest markets such as Chicago, that price point seems like a good bargain. In this up-and-coming tech hub with low unemployment and growing demand for housing, I expect rents to grow. That’s why I’m exploring cap rates in one- and two-family dwellings in the village.
Butler-Tarkington, as its name suggests, is the home of Butler University. I like to buy, rehab, and sell homes in areas that surround colleges because I find these places are generally safer than most other locales in big cities. Both city and academic administrators focus much of their efforts on neighborhood safety and recent statistics show Butler-Tarkington improving in that respect.
Flips in university neighborhoods have worked well for me as I find strong demand from academics and professionals who often quickly need to find proximate housing when moving from one job to another. Available homes range from one-family bungalows to spacious three- or four-bedroom properties whose median value is affordable for the typical local salary range. Of course, to optimize my returns, I’m looking for off-market dwellings that can be had for much less than what the median reflects.
Just a bit south of downtown Indianapolis, Fountain Square is one of the city’s seven cultural districts. The neighborhood sits along the Indiana capital’s cultural trail, which features 10 public art projects and a number of galleries and studios converted from industrial spaces. I find talented performers, painters, and sculptors tend to settle and stay in villages that are conducive to their life’s work, so buying and holding homes in this hamlet has presented me with great opportunities. Upstart residents typically look to rent before committing to buy, and frequently my tenants end up making an offer when I market the property.
In Fountain Square, median values have been on the rise. That trend, which has lifted the neighborhood’s median list price, looks positive for the balance of the year as days-on-market have dropped considerably in just the past few months. I plan on adding to my portfolio in this market in light of strong demand coupled with steady increases in average price per square foot. Add in population growth and manageable cost of living, and I’ll continue to bargain hunt in Fountain Square.
How to Find Real Estate Investment Deals in Indianapolis
In big city real estate investing ventures, it takes more than knowing where the market is heading. You need to know how to find the best opportunities too. Early on, I struggled to find home sellers who were motivated. Lead generation became a serious challenge as I carved my career in professional real estate investing. Fortunately, I no longer have difficulty finding leads because I became an independently owned and operated HomeVestors® franchisee. I discovered that the nationally-known “We Buy Ugly Houses®” advertising campaign was one of the best sources available for generating leads for distressed homes to buy, rehab, and rent out or sell. In fact, HomeVestors® franchisees have closed on more than 100,000 houses nationwide since 1996.
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