If you live in New York City and you're considering purchasing an investment property, then you should consider a location that has lots of college students. In college areas, there will always be a fresh crop of potential tenants, and you don't have to deal with long term problems should they be a nuisance. When they graduate for the year, then your apartment or house is empty again. However, finding opportunities in the New York City area can be tricky. Areas around NYU (The Village) and Columbia (Morningside Heights) are incredibly expensive, so you should broaden your search to areas outside of Manhattan. Here are two options. One is in New York City, and one is close by in New Jersey.
New Brunswick, New Jersey
New Brunswick is home to Rutgers University. This is an enormous school with thousands and thousands of potential renters. There are close to 35 thousand students, and over half of them live off campus.
You should look for multi-family homes in New Brunswick. There are apartment buildings where condos are available, but you should take advantage of the abundance of two family homes. This will maximize the rental possibilities. Many college students like to share a place with a roommate, and a multi-room house is better than a condo.
Another reason to choose the house over the condo is that you won't have to deal with a HOA board restrictions on subletting the unit.
Belmont, The Bronx
Belmont is located in The Bronx. It is sometimes referred to as the "Little Italy" of The Bronx, particularly the areas around Arthur Ave. The area is right across the street from Fordham University. Because of its close proximity to Fordham University, many of the students who wish to live off campus choose the Belmont area.
Belmont is one of the safer areas in the central Bronx. There is an abundance of classical Italian restaurants and grocers. People travel from Long Island, Westchester, and Manhattan to visit the restaurants and Italian bakeries and grocers. It's also very close to The Bronx Zoo and the Botanical Gardens, so lots of people stop by to have lunch or dinner after a visit.
There are two types of homes to look for, single unit apartments and single-family homes. There are new co-op developments in the area. You could purchase a two-bedroom and rent it out to students during the school year. The area is very friendly towards Fordham students because they are seen as a stable rental base and are a huge customer pool for the local businesses, so there is not an issue with subletting apartments. You might also look at one of the older, single-family homes. Many of these are older homes that have three bedrooms, which makes them perfect for students who want to split the rent with friends.
For more information and tips, talk with real estate agencies in the area, such as RE/MAX 1ST CHOICE.