I'm looking into investing in a property that I'd end up renting out. Is one state better to do this than another? Or city?

Some states are easier for som...

Some states are easier for some things (Texas for instance has more landlord friendly laws than California for example) but there are sometime drawbacks to that (Texas has extremely high property taxes). In general, I think you want to be in a city that is growing, has a good job base that will drive increased rents and leasing traffic, and that is somewhat landlord friendly from a legal perspective (easier evictions, less proof needed to turn down a potential renter etc).

James is dead on. Look at job ...

James is dead on. Look at job growth as well as the cities growth rate over 10 years. Who are the top employers? Is the business dying? Growing? I'll use Austin / Round Rock as an example. Dell is by far the #1 employer followed by univ of Texas, the state and your next tier is whole foods, AMD, Freescale. Properties near Dell (round rock) have been flat while prices near the Austin startups/ and stable govt / university jobs are up significantly. Yes there are other factors to consider but be wise about where the job growth is and sustainability of the industry. For a negative example look at detroit or Philly. Both are loosing jobs and prop values are getting smashed

Early lesson from my father . ...

Early lesson from my father . . . universities and governments rarely if ever cut payroll. He invested successfully in Raleigh, Albany, Harrisburg. Reinforces the Austin TX thought. Speculators chase the ups and downs. Investors crave stable steady growth. Know your niche. Either can work, but few can do both well.

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