Three research or news organizations have ranked Memphis real estate at or near the top of major real estate news stories over the past few months with a brand new research paper being released this past week showing Memphis as the #2 market in the country for affordability. The Council for Community and Economic Research (C2ER) gathers data from 309 urban areas to rank them in their Cost of Living Index (COLI) and Memphis has always ranked as one of the most affordable cities to live in as well as raise a family and invest.
Add that piece of news to Bloomberg Businessweek announcement that Memphis has the fastest growing suburb in America and Clear Channel's report that Memphis is expected to be the top appreciating market in the U.S. betwen 2012 and 2014 as well as the fastest appreciating market in the U.S. for the 3rd quarter of 2011 growing at over 8%. Those three pieces of news show that Memphis continues to attract new residents, lower costs of services and is considered as a stable midwestern city set for a prosperous future.
All of this is of course good news for real estate investors who are searching for safe and reliable returns from quality investment cities across the U.S. like Memphis. Buying real estate is, of course, about much more than simply finding cheap properties or cities with low cost of living. We continue to monitor the housing news as well as the jobs forecast and are anxiously awaiting more announcements from international companies as there are rumored to be other major companies looking to move or expand operations in Memphis. When the job numbers make a little more headway and unemployment dips a liitle more, I think you will see a slow rise in rental rates and a slow return to housing starts which could lead to a much more rapid return to normal pricing.
For investors purchasing investment properties in Memphis over the past 2 years and in the next 18-24 months, that will be a tremendous bump in real value. When positive cash flow and steady returns are factored into the value of investing in real estate in Memphis, properties bought in this market will provide one of the greatest aggregated returns on investment in recent history.