AgentMarkets & Economy

Memphis a magnet for real estate investors

Unique factors help single-family purchases pencil out

I got to know the city of Memphis, Tenn., fairly well over the few weeks I spent there doing research for my novel, "The Death of Johnny Ace." The life of my fictional protagonist was based on a real person, R&B singer Johnny Ace, who died tragically just as his career began to peak in 1954. At the time of my story, Memphis was famous for, and would continue to be for another decade, its music scene. Don't forget, Elvis Presley first recorded here, and Graceland is still a big tourist attraction. Memphis is no longer famous for it music, unless in an historical or nostalgic sense. You can still visit Beale Street, but Sun Studio and Stax Records are now only museums. Instead, Memphis, more prosaically, is known as a distribution center, and Federal Express is the main attraction. With its five rail lines, port on the Mississippi River and central location, finished goods are shipped into Memphis to be distributed to retail locations across America -- or, in t...