Profile picture for SnowDesert

Best area to invest in Surprise, AZ; Any bad areas to stay away from?

Hi, Im thinking about investing in a house in Surprise so i can lease out.
It's located on Southeast part of Surprise - House located w/in HOA block of

E - N Dysart rd
S - W Waddell rd
W - N Litchfield rd
N - W Greenfield

Since Dysart borders El Mirage. I've heard bad thing about El Mirage.

Is this area too close to there? Is this area far enough from the really bad part of El Mirage that I should be ok investing here?
Will problems in El Mirage spill over to this side of Surprise?
Should I stay away from this part of Surprise?
Would I have problems finding tenants in this part of town, considering the commute to downtown phoenix.
Are there bad areas in Surprise? If so, where is it? Is that in the older section in the triangle between Grand av, Bell rd and El Mirage rd?

Thx.

Thx.

  • January 21 2011 - Surprise
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Answers (9)

Best Answer

Profile picture for Dartagnan78
The best place in Surprise to invest is around the 303 and Bell Rd down to Waddell or Cactus and North to Grand.

Between Bell Rd. and Waddell they are developing the area. They have plans for car dealerships, numerous shops and plazas and a mall they have been planning for a few years. This is where the housing prices have remained the most stable in the area and I assume will rise once more jobs and attractions for spending are continued to be built.

The houses are also a little bigger and nicer and the people tend to make more money and the schools are better.

I used to live in Roseview and I also used to live in Bell West Ranch. My retarded ex fell for the trap of seeing dollar signs and her parents bought one of the "better" houses for her in El Mirage. I told her she was dumb. All I can say is I laughed my a$$ off when she told me she was robbed Christmas day. El Mirage is a crap heap. There are a few "nice" neighborhoods but they are like finding a diamond in a piece of $hit. It's still surrounded by $hit. The schools are also bad and the drugs and crime are more prevalent all around the area as well as packed with illegals. I remember a news story about a jogger being stabbed by an illegal right around Dysart and Grand and a Shoot out between some illegals At El Mirage and Grand for example.

You can literally drive around neighborhoods at 4:30-5AM and hear roosters crowing and see pitbulls and chihuahua strays roaming the streets. I call it the chicken cluckin barrio.

Western Surprise is the place to buy. Or even Waddell.  This area is the yuppy soccer mom type area. There are some average blue collar neighborhoods as well. North west Surprise between Bell and Grand is considered Sun City West it's all Old people and golf clubs. I am not a realtor. So I don't have to be ethical ;)


Also the area around the 303 and Bell is desirable because the 303 they are working on expanding into a larger highway. I used to live out there I know. I used to commute down the 303 to the 10 or cut across the numerous side streets that go east into phoenix.


El Mirage = El No. Stay away from there unless you just want a high turn over of tenants and low class and blue collar tenants who can't afford to live in the nicer areas of Surprise. My personal opinion is that anything east of Litchfield is crap.


I have been told that the idea behind the developing of the area I pointed out is to make basically a Scottsdale type area in the west valley.

It is also one of the only places out in the Phoenix Metro area where you can see development and people actually building stuff.

But... here is the kicker. 10 years from now you will be happy you bought in that area. If you want immediate gratification. Buy in the East Valley and stay away from the west valley all together. It's still "new" out there. The east valley is more heavily populated and more multicultural and has younger student populations around the college who frequently rent ;) Also. FYI most of Mesa is a crap heap too. It's like El Mirage in the East Valley.

Love peace and chicken grease.
  • January 24 2011
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Profile picture for azretirement
SnowDesert,
As an agent for the area, I would suggest you read the Buyers Advisory.  It has websites that can give you information on the issues you are requesting. 
If you send me your email, I will forward one to you!
  • February 21 2012
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Surprise Farms is the best neighbourhood in Surprise for investors. Its newer and very clean, its also not quite so saturated as the rest of the city. Surprise is a great place to live and is very affordable, the problem is it has an over abundance of rentals and can be hard to sustain rental income. Although on the surface it looks like a great investment, be warned the rental competition is very high and can leave to a lower occupancy rate.

Chris Spalding
[contact information deleted by Zillow moderator. Please see our Good Neighbor Policy]
  • February 20 2012
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Suprise in the West Valley is a great area and was established in 1959.  The major draw back is Bell Road which has very heavy traffic during the snow bird season.
  • February 26 2011
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Profile picture for SnowDesert
wow! dartagnan78... what a a comprehensive answer. Thx! you've given me a lot of info.. At the moment, I'm investing on 2 houses in the heart of gilbert, they're a bit pricier, but I do see these properties appreciate in the next 5 years. My strategy is .1) buy fewer more expensive investments or 2) buy more cheaper investments in Surprise, avondale, or goodyear.

I think based on your answer, I will stay in the east valley (gilbert and chandler) to be on the safe side. Buy fewer properties, but in better areas and better tenants.

Thx!
  • January 24 2011
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Profile picture for sunnyview
You should try the city-data forum here. Most people on it are local residents and will be happy to give you their honest opinion about areas, schools and even streets. They are also not bound by any fair housing laws in telling you which areas are shabby or problems.

Agents hands are tied and since you are buying from out of state, you need that street level information. You might also try the local police department and in looking at the % of residents in your target areas that receive food stamps/aid. Get the income numbers for the area, the education level, professional employment sectors and amount of paid for mortgage/rent on average. They can all help paint a picture of the local neighborhood, but agents cannot give you that info legally.
  • January 22 2011
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I agree with Randy - as ethical agents we are bound by Fair Housing laws that prohibit steering. As an investor with a few homes in Surprise, one of which is even in the area you describe, we have no problem finding tenants. However, for any area in Surprise, you must price the monthly rent very aggressively. Surprise is clean, modern, has plenty of infrastructure, and is a vibrant community. However, it is kind of an "island" meaning that the commute, if you work anywhere besides that city or the nearby air force base, you will have a miserable, surface streets drive. Also, much of Surprise's homes were built during the boom. Which means more foreclosures than other areas, driving purchase prices lower, bringing more investors, and hence more competition. For the above reasons, rents must be priced more aggressively to get tenants than some other areas of the Valley. If you're okay with that, Surprise is an excellent city to invest if you are looking for newer homes, in a well-kept community, for a small price. You can still get a nice positive cash flow at today's prices. A $100K 1500 sft single story home built in the late 90's or early '00's should get you about $850-$900/month.  As has already been stated, best advice about the particular neighborhood is check it out personally, and go with your gut instinct. One thing that is more important than the neighborhood itself is another location factor: don't buy anything that backs a major road, or has a huge haystack, farm equipment or barn visible from the back yard (some houses in that neighborhood are very close to an existing agribusiness) - you may have a hard time renting it no matter the price. p.s. be sure you are working with an agent that understands investments as well as the community. Good luck!
  • January 22 2011
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Profile picture for SnowDesert
Unfortunately I'm in PA, and can't just visit the area when a great opportunity comes up. I was down there only 2 wks ago to look at Chandler and Gilbert, also for investment,  and liked the areas a lot, and already put in an offer in the heart of Gilbert.

I started looking at Surprise cause while there, I took a drive to that area I described above. It's a new HOE community just like any other, but unfornately by the time I got there, it was dark, and it seemed a lot farther driving from Gilbert to Surprise, but plotting on google map from downtown Phoenix to Surprise, that's only about 22 miles, which is how far I drive to work everyday. Anyway, the houses there are so attractively low priced that it seems the fairly priced ones are gone fast (One HUD that that I wanted and never made it to the Extended stage; and another Short sale that had 6 offers). From this info, I'm can only deduce that this is a good area w/ potential. But then again, I'm only making assumptions, and looking at Satellite maps and street views to get a feeling of this area. Since I am remote, I'm having my agent take a look at the house and its surroundings, and make a decision based on that. I just needed independent opinions from members of this board for a second opinion. (Yes, I did drive there, but I may have missed something since I'm not familiar w/ the area. I saw a Walmart supercenter, and lots of chain stores.. I thought.. that might be good? Anyway... just wanted more opinions b4 I commit. Thx. 
  • January 21 2011
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SnowDesert, I do admire your spirit and perseverance. However, you don't listen very well.   LOL

Have you not already secured the services and expertise of a Buyer's Agent who can counsel and assist you in your extensive research?   ;-)

Any real estate agent or broker worth their salt will tell you that we are prohibited by federal and state fair housing laws from 'steering' away from or toward specific neighborhoods. And to be honest with you, your question(s) are a fair housing lawsuit waiting to happen for the unsuspecting or inexperienced agent.

My best advice would be that you drive out any and all areas about which you are concerned. Take a look with your own eyes, and then you can make an informed decision.

Have a great weekend!

...randy
  • January 21 2011
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