Stock Market at All Time Highs – Only Third in Best Investment Survey

January 18, 2017

I’ve been around for quite a while now, always preaching the benefits of real estate investment for control of your own life and financial future. I’ve done well, my students have done well, and real estate investing is certainly high profile these days.
Dean Graziosi

Is Lease Purchase a Good Investment Strategy?

January 1, 2017

Dean Graziosi

Is Lease Purchase a Good Investment Strategy?

December 24, 2016

Dean Graziosi

Real Estate #1 Choice for Investment

November 28, 2016

According to a survey from bankrate.com, Americans’ number one choice for investing is real estate. Though they’re overall still concerned about jobs and the economy, the survey respondents mostly feel good about their personal finances.
Dean Graziosi

Wholesaling: The Real Estate Investment Niche for Everyone

November 26, 2016

Three or four TV and cable networks are wowing viewers with successful real estate “fix and flip” shows. After all, it’s exciting to see an entrepreneurial person or couple successfully buying, rehabbing and selling homes for hefty profits. There’s adventure in the negotiations, working with temperamental contractors and selecting finishes and fixtures. It’s a great business
Dean Graziosi

Why Real Estate Could Be a Better Investment than Stocks – Ya Think!

November 24, 2016

I’m not trying to push anyone into real estate who is afraid of it or not suited for a landlord’s duties. But, there definitely are reasons for real estate as a diversification strategy.
Dean Graziosi

5 Tips for a Low Stress First Rental Property Investment

November 12, 2016

Sure, doing anything for the first time can be a little stressful. And, it’s definitely a major investment to buy your first rental home. But, you really can make it happen without going into stress overload.
Dean Graziosi

Stock Market at All Time Highs – Only Third in Best Investment Survey

July 29, 2016

Dean Graziosi

5 Tips for a Low Stress First Rental Property Investment

October 29, 2015
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You don’t have to be the investor in the photo. Sure, doing anything for the first time can be a little stressful. And, it’s definitely a major investment to buy your first rental home. But, you really can make it happen without going into stress overload. Here are my top 5 tips to enjoy a successful and low stress first rental property investment.

Tip #1: Advice is OK, but Do Your Own Research

Take courses, read investment books, go to a seminar, or any other learning process that helps you to gain confidence to make decisions. I suggest that any books, courses or seminars be about how to select locations, value properties and evaluate the rental market. Your success will be based on your due diligence and most of all buying right in the right area.

Your first rental property investment is best done in your area of residence, where you know what’s going on economically. You want to know that the economy will support today’s decision into the future, as this isn’t a short term strategy. Understand who the major employers are, what drives people to move in or move away, and if things look good into the near future.

Tip #2: Don’t Just Rely on Real Estate Agents

Sure, now and then you can work with a real estate agent who handles foreclosures and get a good deal. Remember though that these will be “listed” foreclosures on the MLS, Multiple Listing Service. You and all of your competitor investors have access to the same information, so competition will likely drive up your cost of acquisition.

If you do your own marketing and locate motivated sellers, you have a greater chance of negotiation a good deal. Another approach is to work with an experienced real estate wholesaler. They are investors too, but they are experts and finding great deals that they can flip to rental property buyers at a below-market value price. Just check their references out and be sure they do know what they’re doing.

Tip #3: Know What Will Rent and for How Much

Check with property managers who handle single family homes. Go to the classifieds and check out what homes similar to the one you’re considering are renting for. Are the owners offering incentives like free months? This is usually a sign of a soft rental market or heavy competition, so you may want to try another neighborhood or property type.

Call on ads, drive around, talk to landlords as if you’re a tenant. The most important thing for you to know before the next tip is what you can reasonably and conservatively expect for rental income and low vacancy.

Tip #4: Get the Right Financing & Cash Flow

You need to know all of your costs, including estimating repairs and other maintenance costs. But, the mortgage is going to be your largest cash outlay, so it is your most important cost consideration. You’ll need to put 20% down or more in most cases. For a rental unit you may also pay a slightly higher mortgage interest rate. A great credit history helps in this regard.

Get a firm handle on all of your costs, then see what your mortgage payment with taxes and insurance escrowed will be. Let’s use an example of a $ 150,000 home with a $ 32,500 down payment and closing costs. If you can manage to clear even $ 250/month over cash out of pocket, your return on the actual cash invested is going to be around 9%.

Tip #5: Lock in Equity at the Closing Table

NEVER buy at retail market value. If you can’t get the home at a 10-20% discount to its current market value, don’t do the deal. You want to leave the closing table with that equity as either future profit or a cushion should you have to sell before your initially planned liquidation date.

If you’re going to work with a wholesaler who you may meet at a local investment club, be clear that you’ll want to see their valuation calcs and you’ll check them with your own. You give them your requirement. If it’s 15% below market value, then they will know what they have to deliver.

You’re in control here, and you don’t have to make a deal until you know it’s going to be a great investment.
Dean Graziosi

Why Real Estate Could Be a Better Investment than Stocks – Ya Think!

September 10, 2015
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Before my added “Ya Think” emphasis, the title is the same as a title of an article this week over at Money,USNews.com. It’s not surprising to see an article like this now, as the China situation took the Dow Jones down in a dramatic way over the course of a week or so. If you want some historical perspective, there are some dates and Dow plunges historically:

• August 24, 2015: -588.47
• August 21, 2015: -530.94
• August 8, 2011: -634.76
• Six more 600 points or larger drops since 2000.

Yes, if you just bought and held for 15 years, you would have done well in stocks. Unfortunately, many people can’t simply drop a major chunk of change into stocks and just let it ride for that long. And, depending on when you buy, having to sell after a drop like these can be devastating to your savings and retirement.

So, that said, I’m not saying dump all of your stocks and buy real estate … particularly not now. However, the next time your stock broker advises you to “diversify,” don’t just do it with stocks. Let’s look at some of the points referenced in the linked article.

Actually, the article wasn’t really that positive about the advantages of investing in real estate. Things like the ease of placing stock trades and low cost of transactions were mentioned. Property taxes were mentioned as a negative, and they are to a point. The article’s title really wasn’t in my opinion supported very strongly by the content. So, let’s take a look at some differences between stocks and real estate as an investment asset class.

Inflation Hedge

Stocks are susceptible to inflation risk. Your return is whatever it is, including dividends. When inflation gets rowdy, it can take away major chunks of your investment gains in stocks. That’s not to say that real estate is inflation proof, but there are some logical reasons why it may be better.

Let’s think about what inflation really is. It is an increase in the cost of goods and services. So, what do you expect to happen to home prices when wood, tile, wiring, plumbing and other materials and labor costs increase? If it costs more to build, usually within a reasonable period of time it will cost more to buy. Your owned property value can actually increase during inflationary periods.

Interest Rate Increases

When interest rates rise, stocks and definitely bonds usually suffer. It costs companies more to borrow to expand and finance operations, so their profits are reduced. Bonds carry a fixed rate of return, so their value drops when interest rates increase.

If you own rental real estate with a fixed mortgage rate, interest rate increases don’t really bother you. In fact, they can help. If mortgage rates rise, more people must rent than buy. Rental demand increases and rents rise.

Taxes

Sure, you must pay property taxes if you own real estate. However, if you’re doing your job, you factor those into your purchase of rental property and the positive cash flow you project to receive. Sure, they can go up, but you may be able to offset that with rent increases.

One major difference is in using the IRS 1031 Exchange rule for growing your real estate portfolio. While the stock market investor will pay capital gains taxes in the year they sell a stock at a profit, real estate investors get a major break. Using this IRS rule, you can sell and roll the profits into another investment and forego paying capital gains. It’s complicated and the rules are strict, so an accountant needs to be involved.

I’m not trying to push anyone into real estate who is afraid of it or not suited for a landlord’s duties. But, there definitely are reasons for real estate as a diversification strategy.
Dean Graziosi

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