There are a few cities in America that are bigger than Los Angeles, but none that feel bigger (unless you have to drive across Texas). There are seemingly a million LAs, and the city is too diverse, too varied, too weird and energetic and boundless to capture. Whitman said he contained multitudes, and that could easily be the city motto. And while that’s exciting for novelists and filmmakers, it can provide a challenge for real estate investors wondering where to put their money.
There are a couple of schools of thought. Some people want to invest in established neighborhoods where they know things will be consistent; others want areas or cities that have struggled, but seem to be up-and-coming (investing in distressed properties and waiting for the market to catch up). And then there are people who want to get into a hot neighborhood: an area that isn’t completely established yet, but has already passed the initial up-and-coming phase.
A hot neighborhood is one that has been on the verge of exploding in value for years and is just now tipping over. This doesn’t necessarily mean that it was run-down before. It just means that, for a multitude of reasons, it is becoming very trendy and home prices are going up. These are good areas to invest in if you’re looking to fix up a home. According to data from Redfin, here are five of the hottest Los Angeles neighborhoods for 2015 and beyond:
Fox Hills, Culver City
Not technically part of Los Angeles, but part of the greater area, Culver City is a quiet and peaceful town best known for its easy access to the highways. This access is helping to make it boom as workers in LA’s booming tech scene migrate to this Westside community. Fox Hills, with its great schools and easy shopping, is becoming the hottest neighborhood in the area. Property is still relatively cheap, but it won’t be cheap for too much longer. Understanding how the LA tech sector impacts housing prices and expectations is the best way to get ahead of the game.
Well-known to all Americans, even if they don’t know it, due to the huge amount of movies and TV shows filmed in this affluent neighborhood, the single-family home atmosphere and stylish architecture of Cheviot Hills is drawing heavily from the newly-rich tech sector. This is a very expensive area, but it is also older, which means that green renovations and smart technology could move these houses from “nostalgically appealing” to “must-have.”
California Heights, Long Beach
In 2012, the historic California Heights neighborhood of Long Beach won both the Physical Revitalization prize and the “Neighborhood of the Year” at the Neighborhood USA Convention. It hasn’t taken very long for the market to catch up. This is a beautiful neighborhood with a lot of pride, whose Neighborhood Association is very active in upkeep and restoration. Every year, it seems to get newer, and delightfully older at the same time. It’s a great area for people who want both charm and convenience, and a great market to get into before it gets overwhelmed.
Maybe the most unexpected name on the list, Leimert Park in south LA was known for a long time as a rough area, but it always had a wellspring of Spanish Colonial Revival style houses, and, more importantly, a deep-rooted culture. Often referred to as the “African-American Greenwich”, Leimert Park is the home of one of the areas most thriving and vibrant arts, music, and literary scenes. It is also becoming a hot real estate ticket, with development expected to bring in new stores, restaurants, and mixed-use buildings. This neighborhood is attracting the young from a variety of scenes, and is a great market to get into as it transforms.
Jefferson, Culver City
Running alongside Jefferson Boulevard west of LA, this tiny neighborhood is booming thanks to easy shopping, peaceful living, and smaller, affordable homes that are ready for renovation. This is an easier market to get into, and one with huge potential for fix-and-flip developers.
Build Your LA Real Estate Dreams with Socotra Capital
LA is too big to even be contained by LA, but the metropolis has dozens of little pockets and hidden gems that the smart real estate investor should understand and be able to use to their advantage. Hot neighborhoods will always be shifting, sometimes seemingly due to whim more than strict economic imperatives, but the same needs – great housing, expert renovations, updated smart and green technology – will stay the same.
A hard money loan from Socotra Capital, California’s leading equity-based hard money lender, can help make these renovations happen. With quick approvals based on equity, not credit scores, you can jump into the hottest neighborhoods in LA to make your real estate dreams a reality. As Walter Sobchack said in the greatest LA movie ever, “If you will it, it is no dream.”
Your real estate assets are your best investments for the future. At Socotra Capital, we’re proud to be the premier direct hard money lender for California real estate. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help.