Don’t get caught unprepared by ignoring these important factors to investing in Indiana.
Deciding where to invest is often one of the first decisions a real estate investor makes. As the old saying goes, “location, location, location.” Finding the type of real estate, determining your financial model, and then putting together a plan to execute all typically come after choosing a location. That being said, there are infinite ways to invest in real estate—so choose the path that fits you best.
You can also expect to get tripped up by new experiences, rules you didn’t know (but should have), and unexpected expenses. In this article, we’ll cover three things every real estate investor should know about investing in Indiana: 1. Where to Invest, 2. What rental property insurance is needed, and 3. Helpful resources for Landlords and Real Estate Investors.
1. What are Indiana’s Largest and Fastest Growing Cities?
Indiana is a quintessential part of the midwest. While the state has a few cities, it’s not known for its major metropolitan centers like neighboring Illinois is with Chicago. Nonetheless, here are the largest cities, by population, in Indiana according to the 2020 estimates with growth rates from the 2010 Census:
- Indianapolis: 877,903, up 7%
- Fort Wayne: 272,398, up 7.3%
- Evansville: 118,407, up .8%
- South Bend: 101,868, up .6%
- Carmel: 101,643, up 28.35%
Noticing there’s quite a difference in the growth of cities across Indiana, you may want to prioritize your investment strategy based on the current growth patterns in these cities. Ordered below are Indiana’s five fastest growing cities from the 2010 Census to 2020 estimates.
- West Lafayette: 51,605, up 74.3%
- Westfield: 46,145, up 54.4%
- Carmel: 101,643, up 28.3%
- Kokomo: 58,243, up 28.1%
- Noblesville: 65,835, up 26.68%
While the size and growth rate of a city can be significant factors in your investment decision making, be sure to look at other relevant indicators of a healthy market such as industry diversity, average household incomes, infrastructure, and even the political environment can all play a role in your ability to be successful.
2. What Insurance is Needed for Rental Properties?
Like other states, before you acquire insurance on your rental properties, you should be aware of some risks you’ll want to protect yourself against.
Weather is one of the most important insurance considerations. While you may not need to be concerned about hurricanes, earthquakes, or large wildfires, Indiana still possesses its own weather-related risks. Natural disasters common in Indiana include tornadoes, flooding, and even landslides—mostly in the state’s southern portion.
Insurance premiums often consider weather as a significant factor, and other factors include the property’s age and condition, the property’s size, and the property’s location. You can use this risk evaluation tool from Obie to get a sense of what may directly impact the insurance premium of your current properties and properties you’re considering purchasing. Obie specializes in providing real estate investors with landlord insurance, so their expertise on the subject is second to none in the industry.
When shopping for the right insurance policy, there are a few bullet points you’ll want to remember:
- Be sure you have a landlord insurance policy and not a standard homeowners policy
- Be aware of the risk of natural disasters and how that may impact your premium
- Compare quotes or work with a broker who will help you do this
- The cheapest quote on the market may not fully protect your investment—be sure to inquire about actual coverages from your broker
Finding a local broker in the area or working with an industry-leading insurtech like Obie will be your best step forward. Obie is a preferred partner of Baselane because of the level of service and proprietary technology they provide to investors.
3. Helpful Resources for Indiana Landlords and Renters
There’s no shortage of links and websites covering real estate investing topics. However, when you need to get straight to the rules and regulations—whether for you or a renter—you’ll want to be sure to consult directly with the sources of that information. Here are a few websites you may find helpful later down the line:
- Indiana Housing & Community Development Authority: to better understand and to help inform renters of their rights by law, this website provides forms, documents, and assistance to renters. This site should be viewed as an informative resource for both renters and owners, as it will help you govern what you should and should not do as an investor.
You may also find the state HUD page helpful. Indiana General Assembly – starting with Article 31, you can use this website to stay well informed of the exact letter of the law when it comes to real estate in Indiana. This will keep you in the know, so you’re not caught off guard or find yourself in a legal battle. Hopefully, by keeping up to date on current laws, you’ll successfully avoid any potential situation.
As a real estate investor, moving into a new location is a great way to expand your business and increase revenue. Indiana is a great place to start looking for investment properties; just do your research and due diligence before you buy.
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