Here are three simple guidelines that must be followed if you plan to succeed at real estate investing. It’s not everything, of course, but at the very least, you must be willing to commit to these things if you want to become a successful real estate investor.
Shall we get started?
Acknowledge the Basics
Real estate investing involves acquisition, holding, and sale of rights in real property with the expectation of using cash inflows for potential future cash outflows and thereby generating a favorable rate of return on that investment.
More advantageous then stock investments (which usually require more investor equity) real estate investments offer the advantage to leverage a real estate property heavily. In other words, with an investment in real estate, you can use other people’s money to magnify your rate of return and control a much larger investment than would be possible otherwise. Moreover, with rental property, you can virtually use other people’s money to pay off your loan.
But aside from leverage, real estate investing provides other benefits to investors such as yields from annual after-tax cash flows, equity buildup through appreciation of the asset, and cash flow after tax upon sale. Plus, non-monetary returns such as pride of ownership, the security that you control ownership, and portfolio diversification.
Of course, capital is required, there are risks associated with investing in real estate, and real estate investment property can be management-intensive. Nonetheless, real estate investing is a source of wealth, and that should be enough motivation for us to want to get better at it.
Understand the Elements of Return
Real estate is not purchased, held, or sold on emotion. Real estate investing is not a love affair; it’s about a return on investment. As such, prudent real estate investors always consider these four basic elements of return to determine the potential benefits of purchasing, holding on to, or selling an income property investment.
- Cash Flow – The amount of money that comes in from rents and other income less what goes out for operating expenses and debt service (loan payment) determines a property’s cash flow. Furthermore, real estate investing is all about the investment property’s cash flow. You’re purchasing a rental property’s income stream, so be sure that the numbers you rely on later to calculate cash flow are truthful and correct.
- Appreciation – This is the growth in value of a property over time, or future selling price minus original purchase price. The fundamental truth to understand about appreciation, however, is that real estate investors buy the income stream of investment property. It stands to reason, therefore, that the more income you can sell, the more you can expect your property to be worth. In other words, make a determination about the likelihood of an increase in income and throw it into your decision-making.
- Loan Amortization – This means a periodic reduction of the loan over time leading to increased equity. Because lenders evaluate rental property based on income stream, when buying multifamily property, present lenders with clear and concise cash flow reports. Properties with income and expenses represented accurately to the lender increase the chances the investor will obtain a favorable financing.
- Tax Shelter – This signifies a legal way to use real estate investment property to reduce annual or ultimate income taxes. No one-size-fits-all, though, and the prudent real estate investor should check with a tax expert to be sure what the current tax laws are for the investor in any particular year.
Do Your Homework
- Form the correct attitude. Dispel the thought that investing in rental properties is like buying a home and develop the attitude that real estate investing is business. Look beyond curb appeal, exciting amenities, and desirable floor plans unless they contribute to the income. Focus on the numbers. “Only women are beautiful,” an investor once told me. “What are the numbers?”
- Develop a real estate investment goal with meaningful objectives. Have a plan with stated goals that best frames your investment strategy; it’s one of the most important elements of successful investing. What do you want to achieve? By when do you want to achieve it? How much cash are you willing to invest comfortably, and what rate of return are you hoping to generate?
- Research your market. Understanding as much as possible about the conditions of the real estate market surrounding the rental property you want to purchase is a necessary and prudent approach to real estate investing. Learn about property values, rents, and occupancy rates in your local area. You can turn to a qualified real estate professional or speak with the county tax assessor.
- Learn the terms and returns and how to compute them. Get familiar with the nuances of real estate investing and learn the terms, formulas, and calculations. There are sites online that provide free information.
- Consider investing in real estate investment software. Having the ability to create your own rental property analysis gives you more control about how the cash flow numbers are presented and a better understanding about a property’s profitability. There are software providers online.
- Create a relationship with a real estate professional that knows the local real estate market and understands rental property. It won’t advance your investment objectives to spend time with an agent unless that person knows about investment property and is adequately prepared to help you correctly procure it. Work with a real estate investment specialist.
There you have it. As concise an insight into real estate investing as I could provide without boring you to death. Just take them to heart with a dash of common sense and you’ll do just fine. Here’s to your investing success.
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/1303880
I consider why you should start real estate investing now rather than later and then follow it up with a few suggestions to help you get started.
The proverbial saying “time is money” is true in real estate investing. Due to a phenomenon known as compounding, money grows faster and faster as time goes by. So the sooner you put your money to work in a real estate investment, over time the more money you will accumulate.
Say, for example, that you start investing $1,000 a year into real estate for the next forty years. At a 9% annual rate of return, your $40,000 cash investment (thanks to compounding) will grow to over $369,000. Whereas, if you wait ten years before you make that investment, that same amount only grows to about $150,000.
In the same way, the longer you wait to get started real estate investing, the less time you have to combine the factors of time and compounding interest, and hence (assuming all things equal) the less wealth you can expect to accumulate as a result.
Say your goal is to retire at age sixty-five. Because of compounding, you stand a far better chance of achieving more wealth by retirement if you start investing at age twenty-five rather then at thirty-five, or forty-five, and so on.
How to Get Started Real Estate Investing?
Develop a plan – How much can you invest comfortably? Are you expecting cash flow or merely looking to make your money when the property is resold? How long do you plan to own the property? What amount of your own effort can you afford to contribute? What amount of wealth do you plan to accumulate, and by when?
Acquaint yourself with the local rental market – Read the local newspapers and see what types of income property have the highest demand for tenants. If there are tons of classifieds seeking apartment tenants, perhaps retail space is more in demand, and vice versa. In other words, learn what product would be best for you to invest in.
Acquaint yourself with the rates of return – At the very least understand the difference between cash and cash return, return on equity, and cap rate. Whereas cash on cash might show what your cash investment might achieve in one year, and return on equity over future years, cap rate helps you choose a property at a fair market value.
Invest in real estate investment software – It is never a good idea to rely on someone else’s numbers. It’s your money. Always run your own numbers on potential investment opportunities. Having the ability to create your own rental property analysis gives you more control about how the cash flow numbers are presented and a better understanding about a property’s profitability.
Create a relationship with a real estate professional that knows the local real estate market and understands rental property. A qualified real estate professional acquainted with your market can be a real plus. It will not advance your investment objectives to spend time with the agent of the year unless that person knows about investment property and is adequately prepared to help you correctly procure it.
Avoid buying into real estate investing “trade secrets”. Tons of real estate investing gurus out there repackage and sell the exact same material as the next guru. The sizzle in the business of real estate investing, however, is about owning a piece of ground that, if unduly researched and purchased sensibly by impartial numbers, with careful management, will likely be more valuable tomorrow than it is today.
How Much Do You Need to Get Started?
There’s no set amount to start real estate investing. You could start out very small and then as you begin to earn more, start contributing more. Start perhaps with 2% of your income and then add a percentage point more each year to your contribution.
The important thing is to start real estate investing now, while “time is on your side” and you can in fact take advantage of a favorable real estate market and compounding interest over the passage of time to achieve your retirement goal.
Here’s to your real estate investing success.
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/2093268
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