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Real Estate Investing: 10 Key Questions to Consider

adult man checking financial information on a smart phone while doing his bookkeeping in his home officeWhen you’re inundated with the stories of successful real estate investors, it may seem like it’s simple to build wealth through real estate investing. It can seem like all you have to do is get a bank loan, buy a house in a decent neighborhood, find a tenant to rent the house, and then live off the rental income from the property. But the truth is that investing in real estate is rarely, if ever, a straightforward process. Many variables must come together for you to be successful. Consequently, many things can go wrong very rapidly. As a result, the real estate investment landscape is riddled with investors who abandoned property investing after only a few years.

According to Upkeep Media, in order to thrive as a real estate investor, you must first understand what you are getting into. Like other assets, owning property comes with several risks. Knowledge is the only way to protect against these threats. The more you know about potential obstacles along the path, the more prepared you will be to deal with them. So, what do you need to know? Start by taking these ten questions into consideration:


1. Do you have your personal finances in order?

There’s a good reason why lenders regard your personal income and amount of debt as a vital part of their criteria when qualifying you for an investment property loan. Having an investment property will have an impact on your finances. How much do you have in savings? How much personal debt are you carrying? Do you have enough disposable income to pay down two mortgages?

2. What are your goals for the investment?

Aerial drone shot shows an upscale suburb with golf course, lake, houses and roof tops.You want to make money from this investment. But how much money do you want to make, and at what level of ownership do you want to make it? Your investing goals decide the ideal real estate investment approach for you. The ambitions of a young college graduate will differ from those of someone older and nearing retirement.

3. How much do you know about properties and investing?

Your level of experience dictates how much assistance you need, how many properties you should purchase to begin, and how quickly you should strive to expand your portfolio. Your experience will also play a factor in determining the ideal property investment approach for you.

4. How much risk can you tolerate?

One example of risk tolerance is the younger investor, who almost always has a bigger appetite for risk, and the older one, who invests more conservatively. As a result, some investors can invest aggressively by employing a high-risk method that provides more significant returns in the shortest amount of time. A less risk-tolerant investor may need to content themselves with more stable investments offering conservative returns.

5. What is your preferred investment strategy?

You might use a long-term (buy-and-hold) approach to investing for cash flow and capital growth. Or you can employ a short-term plan (home flipping) where you buy a property, renovate, and sell it after a short time. These are only two of many real estate investment opportunities. You can also choose an alternative in which you do not directly own any property, such as REITs.

6. What kind of properties should you invest in?

"For sale" and "sold" real estate sign and beautiful new houseThere are residential and commercial properties, and investing in each of these types calls for a distinct set of abilities. There are sub-categories within each category. Instead of spreading your resources thin, it is usually better to focus on a specialty and master it.

7. Should you seek financing or use your own money?

This is not just a matter of money; it is also a matter of risk. What are the risks of investing your own money versus borrowing from a bank? This decision also influences the returns you get on the property. You will earn bigger profits if you employ leverage, but you will also be more protected from market shocks if you use your own money.

8. Where will the property be located?

The location of your property is the most significant influence on the performance of your investment. The neighborhood is more important than the building. A nice house in a bad neighborhood is a horrible deal, but a derelict property in a great neighborhood is a good value. What are your location requirements?

9. Whom do you need on your team?

Businesswomen shaking hands in the officeIt is not an issue of whether you need a team; rather, it is a question of who should be on your team. A real estate investor is only as good as the professionals they surround themselves with. A good team allows you to stand on the shoulders of giants.

10. Who will manage the investment?

It is a misconception to consider a professional property manager’s fee to be a cost. It is an investment that will greatly increase the profitability of your properties and allow you to possess more assets than you can manage. Self-management of your properties limits your options.

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