Considering a fix and flip in Hampton Roads? Before you buy any property, it’s important to fully understand the region - get to know the people, the economy, the housing market, and anything else that might affect your bottom line.
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In that spirit, here’s some important information about the Hampton Roads area in Virginia that should help you put together and execute the business plan for your next fix and flip.
The Greater Hampton Roads Region
Hampton Roads is a metropolitan region in Southeast Virginia and Northeastern North Carolina. The region includes Norfolk, Newport News, and Virginia Beach, three vibrant and fast-growing cities that provide the region with abundant opportunities for real estate investment.
These three cities are situated around a body of water (also called Hampton Roads) that empties into the Chesapeake Bay, and the surrounding area is full of protected natural lands. In other words, lots of beachfront property, and no shortage of areas for walking, hiking, and generally enjoying nature.
Hampton Roads’ Economy is Growing, Fast
One of the reasons Hampton Roads is a promising neighborhood for real estate investment is its vibrant economy - it’s expected to add as many as 30,000 jobs by 2020. A large number of colleges and universities produce highly-skilled workers, and growth in sectors like healthcare and tourism have lead to higher consumer confidence and an unemployment rate of under 4%.
The region receives a large amount of support from federal sources, and is home to a number of US military facilities - in fact, it’s home to nearly one-fourth of the nation’s active-duty military personnel. This is great news for flippers, as active military and veterans have access to financing through Veterans Association loans, meaning strong demand from financially secure buyers in the area.
The federal government’s support extends beyond military, though - Hampton Roads is also home to NASA’s Langley Research Center and Jefferson Labs. Its harbor is among the most productive in the country, which draws additional economic support from the Departments of Transportation and Commerce as well.
All-in-all, Hampton Roads’ strong economy offers good prospects to real estate investors looking to turn a healthy profit in the region.
Real Estate Market in Hampton Roads
The limit to Hampton Roads’ real estate market isn’t demand - there is (and, because of the military presence, probably always will be) a high demand for real estate. But developers, flippers, and other investors haven’t been able to keep up with demand - along with falling inventory, this has led to a shortage in quality properties on the market. As a result, many homes close at or above list price.
Median housing prices in Newport News, Norfolk, and Virginia Beach clock in at about $172,000, $205,000, and $265,000, respectively. If you’re looking for deals for your next fix and flip, Norfolk and Newport News are home to more up-and-coming areas than the highly developed Virginia Beach, and will probably provide better prospects for the scrupulous investor.
As far as education goes, Virginia Beach and Hampton are home to excellent public school systems, while Norfolk and Newport News are good-but-not-great. The region does, however, have some of the state’s best private schools, including Norfolk Academy, Hampton Roads Academy, and Cape Henry Collegiate School.
There are more than a few up-and-coming neighborhoods in the region for those who know where to look. Burton Station has a median home price ~$100,000 lower than Virginia Beach, and is strategically located for students, government employees, and frequent travelers alike. Brooks Crossing in Newport News is also undergoing a transition, receiving investment in office space that promises to build jobs and bring in a wealthier population of skilled STEM workers.
Whatever you’re looking for in a neighborhood for your next fix and flip, Hampton Roads offers a healthy mix of developed and up-and-coming areas that could be perfect for nearly any buyer.
The Bottom Line
Overall, Hampton Roads is an aesthetically beautiful region with a growing economy and strong housing market that’s ripe for investment. If you’re thinking about investing in real estate but don’t yet know where to start, check out our free ebook, Building Your Real Estate Empire: Borrower Basics 101.