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The Top 20 Best Places to Invest in Real Estate in America

4.2 out of 5 stars 5 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0984558308
ISBN-10: 0984558306
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Benda is Associate Director of the International Center for Migration, Ethnicity, and Citizenship at the graduate faculty, New School for Social Research, New York.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 244 pages
  • Publisher: PortReal, LLC (March 30, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0984558306
  • ISBN-13: 978-0984558308
  • Product Dimensions: 11 x 0.5 x 8.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #7,564,110 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

By R. Merwin on May 19, 2010
Format: Paperback
I found this book helpful for evaluating real estate as investment potential. There is so much uncertainty in the stock market that investing in real estate is a more reliable stategy - at least you have your assets invested in something tangible that can create REAL cash flow and generate a better rate of return than "dividends" or "interest". This book helps to understand the factors influencing area economics. Although the book has a specific top 20 and worst 20, the business model that was used can be applied to any area.

I have been working as a realtor for the past 7 years and prior to that, a real estate developer for 20 years. This is a good tool to share with investors to help them analyze the economics of investing in real estate. This is truly a "buyer's" market now.
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Format: Paperback
When you are ready for some real analysis to determine where you should be putting real estate investment dollars, this is the place to begin. With this book, Mr. Benda has put a huge amount of analysis in one place to help answer some fundamental questions, such as which markets are good for investment and which ones should be avoided. From a practical perspective, this saves a lot of time and could help avoid some costly errors.

The charts are clear and information rich. The commentary provides a useful primer on the market.

This book is a good investment whether you are interested in learning how to think analytically about real estate, just dabbling in the market, or ready to make some investments.
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Format: Paperback
Anyone interested in allocating capital to real estate can benefit from the information contained in this book. Fund managers, wealth advisors, self-directed investors, developers, and loan officers can each find useful data points to help boost risk-adjusted returns via improved market selection.

For each market covered, the book touches on the components of total return and risk that any prudent investor would incorporate into their analysis. First, current pricing of each market is analyzed in terms of rents vs. home pricing (i.e. current yield) and this metric ('affordability') is placed into context via a ranking against the largest 379 cities in the country. Second, appreciation in home values is forecasted based on historical data and reversion to the mean analysis. For those interested in fundamental drivers of appreciation, rather than reversion to the mean, the book lists each market's inventory (supply) and employment/population (demand) statistics. Third, historical volatility is shown to provide a proxy for each market's riskiness vis-a-vis the national median and the S&P 500.

The only caveat I have with respect to the market profiles pertains to the pricing/affordability metrics whereby the calculations are based upon an assumed vacancy rate of 8.25% for all markets. I believe this convention likely creates a bias in the affordability rankings in favor of those markets with greater than average vacancy, which may or may not be helpful to the extent markets tend to revert to normalized (lower) vacancy levels over the next few years. Overall, the amount of relevant information provided is a bargain at the reasonable price of $15.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As a realtor, I was already familiar with PortReal, the publisher of this book, and have utilized its investment rating service in the past. While PortReal offers indepth ratings for all 379 real estate markets in the U.S., this book focuses on the top 20 markets to invest and 20 markets not to invest. In addition to the valuable perspectives on investing and real estate offered at the beginning of the book, it also provides indepth economic profiles of each of the 40 markets covered, along with proprietary forecasts for each market that have been validated to be over 65% accurate in predicting price changes. Whether you are looking to make investments in residential real estate anywhere in the U.S., or simply want to become better informed about real estate investing during these turbulent times, this book is an essential resource.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The book itself was fine, but the vast majority of the book consists of charts and graphs which were unreadable on my Kindle. The print was too small and not expandable, the contrast was too light and could not be read in large part and the tables were too small. I am trying to buy a hard copy of the book, but the Kindle copy was not usable
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