The inner city of Detroit is a real estate market that is largely unknown to and/or avoided by many real estate investors. Most investors seek to avoid/minimize risk, for various reasons such as past reputation, horror stories of $1 house purchases bought sight unseen, headline news, and other unique urban challenges many investors by default avoid the Detroit area entirely assuming it’s much easier, less risky, and more rewarding to invest elsewhere. With the large amount of inventory and high amount of non-traditional sales many online tools may generate values for homes in the area that can be at times very skewed and inaccurate which can obscure opportunities in the market if one doesn't know where to look.
One key to investing in Detroit is to understand and know the neighborhoods where you are investing. The City of Detroit has a land mass big enough to fit San Francisco, Boston, and the New York borough of Manhattan within. Detroit in the 1940-1950's was the 4th largest city in the US. In 2000 it was still the 10th largest city in the US. During the recent real estate market decline & bankruptcy of some American automakers, between the period of 2000-2010 the population of Detroit further declined another 25%. The City of Detroit has a very unique opportunity to re-plan itself due to the large population decline and available land mass. Note: While the inner center of Detroit has declined the surrounding metro area has always continued to grow.
In 2012, it appears the City of Detroit has fallen to the 18th largest city in America with a population down to around 701,475. While Detroit now has a population reflective of its 1910-1920 years, its infrastructure is setup for a city 2 to 3 times its current size. Today the auto manufacturing companies are doing well and the City of Detroit has taken a tough step to declare bankruptcy which is the largest municipal filing in U.S. history with an estimated debt between $18-$20 billion. There are numerous revitalization efforts currently taking place in the city and now through bankruptcy the city has taken even further action to reverse its decline and set itself up to better provide essential services and a better quality of life for its residents. Many areas in downtown Detroit where significant investments have been made are seeing a significant population increase.
Seattle metro area is home to several large companies such as
Microsoft, Boeing, Amazon, Costco and Starbucks. Back
in 2008 Seattle planned to increase its population by 60% adding 350,000
people by the year 2040. Even with no planning the city estimated it
will grow by a minimum of 200,000 by 2040.
While there was a downturn in the market the last few years growth in Seattle continues and the house prices are recovering from a general nationwide decline. In 2013, information shows the Seattle (King County) area population continues to grow. Available housing inventory in Seattle, WA remains low and the home buyer market is competitive.