Young professionals represent a super desirable demographic for real estate investors. Unlike students, who can be loud, disruptive, flakey, and hard on your rental property, young professionals can offer a lot to landlords. Young professionals pay their rent on time, are relatively low maintenance, are attracted to amenities and the location of your rental unit – not necessarily the square footage – and are willing to pay top dollar for those amenities.
If you’re interested in targeting this demographic, you’ll need to choose the location of your rental property carefully. After all, you won’t find a lot of young professionals in rural areas or bedroom communities. You’ll need to focus on urban areas to rent to young professionals.
Orlando is a popular urban area for investors, with a population of 284,000. The city is home to a rich tapestry of eclectic and funky neighborhoods and has a thriving art and entertainment scene, with plenty of jobs for those coveted young professionals. So if you’re interested in renting to young professionals in Orlando, here are the neighborhoods where you should focus.
1. Baldwin Park
- Median listing home price: $685,000
- Average price per square foot: $324
- Walkscore: 55
- Household median income: $98,750
- Average rental income: $2,029/month
Baldwin Park is a cozy neighborhood located in northeast Orlando. Originally home to the Naval Training Center, Baldwin Park has since been rehabbed into a thriving community with plenty of green spaces, palm-lined streets, cafes, restaurants, and bars centered around two lakes.
Suppose you’re interested in purchasing a rental property for young professionals in Orlando. In that case, the cost for properties may be relatively high, but the average rent and median household incomes are also high. High property costs and incomes indicate that you could easily attract high-quality tenants while charging enough rent to cover the higher acquisition costs.
While Baldwin Park has a significantly higher median listing price than the other neighborhoods we’ve reviewed, the household median income is also the highest. That means if you have the funds to secure property in this neighborhood, you’ll be able to target high-income individuals who will pay their rent on time and treat your property with care.
2. Park Lake/Highland
- Median listing home price: $399,000
- Average price per square foot: $234
- Walkscore: 84
- Household median income: $64,211
- Average rental income: $2,150/month
Park Lake/Highland is a vibrant neighborhood in central Orlando that is home to the iconic micro-neighborhood of Little Saigon, along with well-known, restaurant-laden streets like North Mills Avenue and Virginia Drive. From a residential perspective, Park Lake/Highland has a mix of tree-lined residential streets and denser multi-unit zones. These aspects combine to make Park Lake/Highland a highly desirable location for young professionals.
Homes in Park Lake/Highland are moderately priced, with a median listing price of $399,000. The median rental income is $2,150/month, and Park Lake/Highland residents earn an above-average income of $64,211.
There’s something for everyone in Park Lake/Highland, and you’ll be able to secure a moderately priced property while still charging one of the highest rents of the neighborhoods on this list.
- Median listed home price: $349,500
- Average price per square foot: $330
- Walkscore: 69
- Household median income: $66,350
- Average rental income: $1,820/month
The central hub of Orlando, the downtown district, is home to high-rise office towers and historic municipal buildings. It’s where the bulk of business is conducted in Orlando, and high-achieving young professionals who can afford to live close to work, choose to make the downtown neighborhood their home.
If you’re considering a property in the downtown neighborhood of Orlando, you can choose between single-family homes or multi-unit residential properties. The average price per square foot is $330, and the average rent is reasonable at $1,820/month.
The Downtown district has the highest concentration of condos and multi-family units, and the proximity to businesses ensures this neighborhood will have a built-in tenant base for years to come.
4. South Eola
- Median listed home price: $532,400
- Average price per square foot: $334
- Walkscore: 91
- Household median income: $87,870
- Average rental income: $1,649/month
Located centrally and popular with young professionals, South Eola is an exceptionally walkable neighborhood with the iconic Lake Eola at its center. You’ll find modern condos, single-family homes, and the famous Sunday Orlando Farmer’s market in this neighborhood. You’ll also find more affluent tenants, as the average annual income in this neighborhood is $87,870.
From an investment perspective, the median listed home price in this area is a little higher, but the price per square foot is still a reasonable $334, suggesting those more expensive homes are on the larger side. You can still find affordable rental properties in multi-unit residential buildings.
South Eola is one of our top picks due to its mix of property types and high average income. With these options, you should be able to choose an investment property that works for you and have your pick of high-income tenants.
5. East Central Park
- Median listed home price: $444,000
- Average price per square foot: $282
- Walkscore: 73
- Household median income: $52,343
- Average rental income: $1,100/month
East Central Park is a well-known neighborhood in Orlando for its dense suburban vibe and proximity to the famous Milk District. The area is great for young professionals looking for space to raise their dogs while maintaining a good walk score of 73.
There are plenty of rentals in East Central Park, but choosing your property is important, as the average rent for a 1-bedroom is $1,100, which is lower than other neighborhoods we’ve reviewed.
East Central Park is one of the more affordable neighborhoods on this list, with a price per square foot under $300. Lower purchase prices could be helpful for new investors, and the reasonable rents mean you’ll still receive a good ROI for your property.
Orlando has many fun things to do, along with a wealth of arts and culture, a unique foodie scene, and an unemployment rate of just 2.7% in May 2022, signifying a bustling job market. The median age of residents of Orlando is 33.9 years, which is lower than Miami and Tampa, proving that young professionals are flocking to Orlando. Orlando is also an excellent place for singles, and it was ranked as the second best city for singles, according to a WalletHub study.
Orlando is full of desirable neighborhoods, but there are some areas that you could avoid if you want to ensure your investment property is easily rentable and not subject to vandalism. Some neighborhoods to avoid include Mercy Drive, which has a higher-than-average crime rate and a lower-than-average income for its residents. Malibu Groves may also be worth avoiding. Malibu Groves residents have a 1 in 12 chance of being a victim of a crime. Wherever you buy property, we recommend researching crime statistics for your due diligence.
If safety is your number one concern, consider neighborhoods that have a low number of violent crimes per capita. You’ll find these neighborhoods are a little further from the city core and may not be the areas we’ve named as best for young professionals. That said, the safest parts of Orlando include Eagles Nest Park, Wedgewood Groves, and Lake Nona Estates. Most of these neighborhoods are at least a few miles away from downtown Orlando and are family oriented and quiet.