When a city's population increases 400 percent over the course of four decades, you know there must be something special there. So, just what is it about Bakersfield that makes it one of the fastest growing cities in the state?
Jobs, for starters - it's located in Kern County, California's most prolific oil-producing region. Then, there is the agricultural aspect of Bakersfield's economy - the city is the fourth most productive in the United States. This is, no doubt, due to its premium location in the San Joaquin Valley. Bakersfield also has a robust natural gas and petroleum refining industry and a fair share of food distribution companies.
The biggest draw, however, could be the lower cost of living compared to most California cities of its size. All of this combined draws residents from around the state, especially from Los Angeles, 110 miles southeast of the city.
Surrounded by mountains, Bakersfield enjoys desert-like weather with hot, dry summers and cool, moist winters. Dangerous, blinding tule fog settles over the city from mid-October through March, but for the most part, Bakersfield has more sunny days than most cities in the U.S.
One of the biggest drawbacks to living in Bakersfield is the lousy air quality. This is not a good place to live for those with respiratory problems. The city has been noted by the American Lung Association as being among 22 U.S. cities with "more unhealthy days on average" than the rest of the country. In fact, it came in at number three on a list of most polluted American cities.
For the approximately 350,000 residents of Bakersfield, however, it's tolerable. They enjoy getting outside and many spend their leisure time at one of the city's annual festivals, such as the Scottish Games and Kern County Basque Festival in spring, the Lowrider National in summer, and the Kern County Fair in early autumn. You'll also find them watching drag races at Famoso Raceway or at one of the many family-fun attractions in and around the city.
Q2 2015 Bakersfield Rental Market Update
Bakersfield is currently the worst market in the Western U.S. for rental real estate investment; it was ranked 13th out of 13 Western metropolitan areas in the Q2 2015 Rental Ranking Report. However, it's still a moderately good market for rental real estate investment when compared to the rest of the U.S.; it was ranked 29th last quarter out of the 75 total markets included in the Rental Ranking Report.
Bakersfield suffered from a dismal year-over-year median rental price increase of just 1.17 percent in Q2 2015. This was one of the lowest rental price increases in the country last quarter and a whopping 76 percent less than the national average for that metric. Bakersfield's annual property value appreciation rate in Q2 2015, a modest 4.38 percent, was nonetheless slightly lower than the national average - and even lower when compared to other metros in the Western U.S. Sluggish local job growth, as indicated by Bakersfield's fairly low annual job growth rate of 1.38 percent (32 percent less than the national average during Q2 2015), reinforces the fact that Bakersfield's rental housing market is unlikely to heat up to any significant degree anytime soon.
What data is this Rental Ranking Report based on?
To calculate the statistics found in the Q2 2015 Rental Ranking Report, All Property Management gathered data, including the most recent government housing and jobs data, for 75 metros across the United States. Specifically, we looked at home vacancy, capitalization, home value appreciation and job growth rates, changes in rental prices, and the average number of days properties have been on the market to determine which U.S. metros will give investors the highest returns on rental investments. Click here to learn more about the Rental Ranking metrics.
Should I invest in Bakersfield rental property?
Thinking about renting out a property in Bakersfield? Save time, avoid hassle and maximize your rental income by having a professional property management company operate your rental property for you. Click here to get a free quote from a local property manager or call 877-780-4510 to have the All Property Management staff get quotes for you.
All Property Management specializes in connecting rental property owners with professional property managers in communities across the United States. These property managers help set rental rates, advertise properties, screen and manage tenants, collect rent, manage vendor relationships and ensure compliance with local, state and federal housing regulations. They take the hassle and worry out of managing rental properties - all while maximizing rental property owners' rental incomes.