While investing in real estate may not be easy, it is generally worth the time and effort to learn how to become a savvy real estate investor.
One of the first steps is to LEARN ABOUT REAL ESTATE. Before embarking on any adventure, you’ll need to do your homework. There are numerous books and online resources that will allow you to be well-versed in how the economy and real estate markets function. Learn about national and local trends. You don’t need to have your real estate license to become a successful real estate investor.
Next, you’ll want to DEVELOP YOUR INVESTING GOALS AND STRATEGIES. Determine how much money you have to invest, where you want to be a year from now (short term strategy), 3-5 years from now (medium term strategy) and 5 or more years from now (long term strategy). Is appreciation your goal (i.e. buy low and sell high), or cash flow/income (ie. rental property)? Do you want to fix and flip, or hold for a longer term?
IDENTIFY YOUR TOLERANCE FOR RISK: Generally, there’s a direct correlation between risk and return. Do you want to go with the safer risk (nice property, renters already in place) or the higher risk (fixer upper, etc.)?
Of course, you’ll want to ANALYZE YOUR FINANCES. How much of your own money do you want to spend? How much money do you want to borrow (leverage)? Do you want to get other people in on the investment as co-owners?
WHAT TYPE OF PROPERTY DO YOU WANT TO PURCHASE? Commercial? Condominium/Townhome? Vacant land? Residential? If it’s a rental property, do you plan to hire a property manager or self-manage? Condominiums and Townhomes tend to require less maintenance, as the dues usually pay for that. Vacant land, while usually not providing income, is virtually maintenance free.
SUCCESSFUL REAL ESTATE INVESTORS learn to rely on other people. They won’t hesitate to enlist the aid of other professionals (Realtor, banker, home inspector, accountant, property manager, insurance agent, attorney) in order to ensure that the entire process goes smoothly.
FIND A GOOD REAL ESTATE AGENT that is experienced in the field of investment properties, and the type of property in which you want to invest. Find an agent who can help you shop for ideal investment properties. Interview several different agents before choosing one, and be sure to discuss your goals and investment plan.
Real estate investment is a complicated field, with a lot of money changing hands. If you’d like to expand your investment portfolio, real estate is a popular and successful way to do it.