There is no shortcut to making money or getting rich quickly in real estate, but you can slowly and steadily build wealth by investing wisely. You would know that there are many different ways to become rich but real estate is one of the best ways to build wealth. Having said that, making money in real estate takes the right advice, systems, and determination. Investing in real estate stands out as a tried and tested approach to making money but like every other business, it has some risks associated with it.
If done the right way, real estate can be a great source to build wealth if you take the time to educate yourself about the process and the best ways to get great returns. If you have cash (a 20% down payment), it’s much easier to get started in real estate investing. But the truth is many entrepreneurs start their businesses – including real estate investing – with very little money every day. Many of them just get off the ground by dreaming big and putting in a lot of effort.
This article has been written for beginners who want to know how to make money in real estate. Today, there are numerous options for investors to invest in real estate; there is no one-size-fits-all answer. One of the finest ways to diversify your portfolio is to learn how to generate money in real estate. If you have a lot of money, you could, for example, buy an undervalued real estate property, fix it up, and sell it to an investor. You profit from the sale of the property for a considerably higher price than you paid for it after the work is completed.
You can also consider buying a long-term rental property or a second home where you vacation and rent out to others when it’s not in use if you’d rather leverage your investment by using a mortgage to invest in a tenant-ready property. With the right steps, you can increase your wealth, hedge against inflation, and profit from a rising market. There are so many advantages to owning real estate like leverage, appreciation, tax benefits, that just getting a “good deal” can make for a great long-term investment.
We’ll show you how to make money in real estate, and avoid the most common mistakes. The most popular way is to buy an investment property and slowly build up your portfolio. Generally, there are two primary ways to make money from real estate assets — appreciation, which is an increase in property value over a period of time, and rental income collected by renting out the property to tenants. The majority of the money & wealth you build through real estate comes from appreciation but cash flow is important because it helps in reducing your risk.
Buying a rental property that loses money every month in hopes of a future appreciation is a bad investment. The positive cash flow doesn’t only enable you to pay off the property but it also contributes to saving for another down payment to buy your next investment property sooner. The more properties you buy, the more you can save, and the faster you can achieve your money-making goals through real estate investing.
But we shall discuss some more “well-known” ways to make money in real estate which include both active and passive investing. Remember, knowledge is the key to using real estate as a vehicle for wealth building. Smart investors always know what drives markets, how to time market cycles, and whether to invest in a local market or to invest out of state.
10 Ways To Make Money In Real Estate And Get Rich
Investing in real estate can add diversification to your investment portfolio. In this article, our focus will be on how to make money in real estate through different means. Are you excited? There are multiple ways to begin growing your wealth by utilizing real estate. Let’s get started and see how you, too, can become a successful real estate investor.
1. Making Money in Real Estate Through Rental Properties
This is the classic way of making money in real estate and getting rich. In this type of investment, you make money by leveraging long-term buy-and-hold residential rentals. People will always require a place to live. Lords and nobles fought over titles that let them collect rent from those living, farming, and otherwise working the land. A few entrepreneurial types drained swamps and built businesses so that they could make more from the land than they would if they merely leased it out to farmers and ranchers.
We’ve come a long way in the intervening ways, providing many options for those who want to know how to make money in real estate. You may buy land, build a home, and then rent it out. You could find distressed properties, rehabilitate them, and then rent them out. Turnkey properties were purchased by someone else who rehabilitated them before finding a tenant. Regardless of how you acquire the property, it is a buy and holds strategy.
You can own residential, commercial, and industrial real estate property. One of the biggest benefits of owning rental real estate is the steady cash flow it generates. It is the best form of owning investment real estate for earning a passive income. The downside of this approach is that you’re putting all your eggs in relatively few baskets. If there are issues with the apartment complex you own, the rental income from it suffers as people leave or the repair costs eat into your profits.
This strategy is probably the one most likely to let you generate a steady income that is large enough to live off of once you own multiple rental properties. You may be able to utilize this strategy if you cash out money from a retirement account or equity in your home. If you want to know how to get rich in real estate, understand that this is one of the most secure routes to doing so as long as you manage expenses and the properties themselves well. Dallas is a very good real estate market for buying rental properties.
Know the rules for evicting tenants and raising rental rates if you’ll be managing an apartment building. Understand the local building code, community norms for properties in the price range you’ll be buying, and cost-effective upgrades if you’ll be buying and flipping properties.
You can’t afford to lose money turning a middle-class home into the only luxury property on the block. All of this requires the money to buy the properties. We’d recommend saving up or tapping into funds you have to put down the first down payments on single-family homes or small multi-family housing units. This may come from your savings, equity in your primary residence, or a retirement account.
We’d recommend against borrowing against your 401K since the money has to be paid back within a few weeks of losing your job or else you have to pay taxes and a penalty on it. You’d almost be better off pulling money out of an IRA. You have more control over the fees and taxes you’d pay. Set aside thousands of dollars in an emergency fund to cover unplanned repair bills, surprise legal fees, and other costs you haven’t properly taken into account.
Then you don’t end up cutting into your cash flow with high-interest hard money loans to pay for the little repairs needed to legally rent out the unit or hit your credit cards to pay contractors. Buy a single property with your cash down payment, a mortgage, and your business plan. Set the goal of renting out the unit for 1 percent of its total value per month.
For example, a 100,000 dollar house should rent for around a thousand dollars a month. Then apply your strategy. Sell the fixer-upper or collect the first few months of rent from your new tenant. Rebuild your emergency fund, since you may need thousands of dollars to fix a broken water heater or hole in the roof. Save up enough money for your next renovation or down payment.
Then seek a mortgage to buy that next property and repeat the pattern. Don’t rush out to buy a bunch of properties. Debt multiplies risk, and you don’t want to end up with a million dollars of outstanding unsecured debt because you tried to manage ten rental properties without any experience as a landlord. Nor can you afford to make a mistake with a property management company. Don’t try to fix and flip several properties at once. Grow slow so that you have the margin to absorb the cost of mistakes.
This is why you should be buying one to three rental properties a year, not the ten some property investment programs recommend. Buy and flip one property at a time, no matter how long that takes, until you have the expertise or expert contractor on your team to handle several such renovations at once. Buy a small apartment building and learn how to manage it or find a good property manager to do the work for you.
Remember that every month results in increased equity in the property, and that’s aside from the income you’re earning. You could dramatically improve the cash flow if you aggressively pay down the outstanding mortgage on a property. For example, you go from earning 300 dollars to 1000 dollars per month per single-family rental home.
What is a property that turns out to need far more work than you expected? What if the apartment building isn’t working out as expected? Sell it, pay off the debt, and then start over with the cash you have leftover. You will eventually be making millions in real estate as you build up your real estate portfolio, and you could see a million-dollar net worth in less than five years.
If you own dozens of rental homes, consider selling them to buy professionally managed multi-family housing. When you’re ready to earn truly passive income, that is one route. Selling the properties to other investors and investing in real estate investment trusts or shares of a property managed by others is another.
2. Interest-Based Income Through Investing in Mortgage Notes
Mortgage notes can be a good real estate investment for people seeking passive income. When you buy a mortgage note, you receive monthly payments that include both interest and principle. It is a steady stream of income like you’d receive from a rental property, but there is no need to maintain the property like a landlord. It is far easier to invest in real estate located around the country because you don’t have to deal with local rules regarding real estate licensing or taxes. The mortgage note spells out the loan duration. You know how long you’ll receive loan payments, and it may be 10 to 30 years.
You may be able to increase the value of the mortgage note by buying from a distressed note holder. For example, you may find a farm or family property sold via owner financing. The person sold their home, but now they have to manage the loan. They may need the money, whether it is to allow them to buy a new home or simply get cash to fund their retirement. In these cases, you might offer 80,000 dollars to buy a 100,000 dollar note. If they accept, you receive the interest and principal on a 100,000 dollar loan but only paid 20,000 dollars for it.
Another class of desperate sellers is the private lender with a slow or non-paying borrower. They’re not getting the income they expected. They may be reluctant to foreclose on a slow-paying family member. Or they may not want the property back. You can buy these notes for far less than their face value. However, you’re going to either need to ramp up collection efforts or foreclose on the property. Only buy notes like this if you have a plan for how to monetize the property, whether you rent it out, sell it to someone else or redevelop the property.
3. Getting Rich By Flipping Real Estate
This is another proven way to make quick money in real estate to get rich. Fix and Flip is a specific form of real estate investing. The investor buys a home, pays for repairs and renovations, and then sells the property for a profit. This type of real estate investing is the subject of numerous reality shows. The reality is that this form of real estate investing is high risk. If you’ve underestimated rehabilitation costs, you could lose money.
If you put too much money into the investment property because you don’t understand your target market and buyer expectations, you’ve probably wiped out your real estate profit margins. Whether there are problems with the selling price, the real estate agent, the neighborhood, or how the property looks, every month the house sits on the market subtracts the property’s carrying costs from your profit margin.
If you try to do the repairs yourself to save money, the theoretical savings on labor costs are offset by the delays in getting the property to market. If you’re not already a skilled building contractor, there is a risk that DIY repairs don’t meet code or potential buyers’ expectations. Then you may lose everything on the deal because you have to pay for someone else to redo what you thought was done. The ideal fix and flip is a property that only needs cosmetic repairs, but these are truly rare.
4. Making Money Through Real Estate Investment Trusts
Real Estate Investment Trusts or REITs allow you to invest in real estate without having to buy and manage a property. REITs may be invested in mortgages, properties, or a mix of both. You can diversify your holdings in real estate by buying REITS invested in particular market niches. Because REITs are publicly listed, you can buy and sell shares on the open market, making your money more liquid and allowing you to diversify your investments. One of the benefits of REITs is their non-correlation with other types of equities.
This means that the value of REITs depends on the real estate market, not the stock market. REITs are available in publicly traded and non-traded forms. The Securities and Exchange Commission recommends against non-traded REITs due to their high fees, the challenge of liquidating them, and the risk they may become worthless. Publicly traded REITs are as liquid as stocks and bonds. REITs stand out for their regular payment of dividends, something that a decreasing share of stocks offers anymore. Clearly, this also shows a way to make money in real estate and get rich.
5. Making Money Through Real Estate ETFs and Mutual Funds
You can buy exchange-traded funds (ETFs) and mutual funds that are broadly diversified or targeted to a particular sector. And you can buy ETFs and mutual funds that are themselves invested in real estate. For example, it is possible to buy ETFs that invest in real estate stocks such as publicly-traded home builders. Some ETFs invest in REITs, as well. There are mutual funds that invest in real estate developers and property management firms. Both investments are handled by a fund manager (ETFs are passively managed, and mutual funds are actively managed).
ETFs are less expensive than mutual funds, and you can trade them like stocks at any time during market hours. The benefits of investing in ETFs and mutual funds include high liquidity and low costs. Forget cashing out your 401K or 403B plan to buy rental real estate, since this strategy allows you to invest in real estate within tax-advantaged retirement accounts. You don’t need a lot of money upfront to start investing this way. Conversely, you may not receive dividends. You may not receive any returns until you sell the appreciated shares.
6. Using Private Lending To Making Money in Real Estate
Hard money lenders loan money to those utilizing the fix and flip strategy. They may lend money to those buying a property to renovate and then rent out; the property investor, in this case, would secure a traditional mortgage after they have an attractive property bank will now consider as collateral. Acting as a bank to property buyers yields a higher rate of return than you’d see if you left money sitting in the bank. You have to do your due diligence since mistakes could mean you don’t have a valid lien against the property.
For those not yet ready to invest a large sum into a single project, crowdfunding is an option. You can loan money to someone who wants to buy a rental property or secure a down payment on their own home. In either case, the loans are high-risk and illiquid. Another issue is that hard money lending of more than modest means that SEC rules apply. If you don’t meet the income and net worth requirements set by the SEC, you may not be allowed to loan money to real estate investors unless it is in token amounts through a crowdsourcing site.
7. Increase In Wealth Through Real Estate Appreciation
When the value of a property increases, we call this “appreciation.” While appreciation is not always guaranteed but historically real estate prices have appreciated over the long term. So, again, appreciation alone is not likely going to make you a millionaire but real estate has always increased in the US, averaging 3% per year over the past century. For example, if you purchased a property for $250,000 2 years ago, and today that property is worth $350,000, the appreciation made you $100,000 richer or in other words, your assets grew by $100,000.
Another type of appreciation that can come into play is known as “forced appreciation,” the concept of increasing the value by physically upgrading the property through renovation. Any form of appreciation makes you money in real estate and you become richer. Click on the link to find out how investing in Kansas City real estate can help you gain wealth.
8. Opting For 1031 Exchange in Real Estate
As a real estate investor, you can use this tax code called 1031 Exchange to sell an investment real estate and use the profit to buy a new one that is of equal or greater value. In this way, you can defer paying taxes until that next property is sold or you can opt for another 1031 Exchange. When you choose to sell your property, you are required to pay taxes for your capital gains. With the help of section 1031 of the Internal Revenue Code, you are permitted to postpone paying taxes when you reinvest those gains in another property. IRS considers that you are exchanging your old property for another real estate property.
9. Loan Pay Down
When you purchase a rental property with a mortgage, each month you make a payment to the lender. That payment includes two parts: principal and interest. Interest is the profit for the lender, but the principal is the money you are paying down the loan with. Over time, your tenant is essentially paying the loan down for you, helping you build wealth automatically. For example, if you purchased a house five years ago for $100,000 and obtained an $80,000 mortgage (we’ll say it was a 30-year mortgage with a 5 percent fixed rate), today you would owe only $74,000.
Ten years from now, you would owe only $65,000. This means that every year your equity increased. You’d gain value, as long as the property value didn’t drop. And if it made $0 in cash flow or broke even and never climbed in value, still after the mortgage is paid off, you’ll now have a property worth $100,000 or more that you didn’t save for. Your tenant paid it off due to the “loan pay-down.” This can’t happen if you pay all your cash or savings for the property and don’t go for the mortgage options. This is the smartest strategy for making money in real estate to get rich.
10. Refinancing Your Mortgage For Better Cash Flow
You can also opt for refinancing your mortgage. The number one benefit of refinancing your mortgage is to obtain a loan at a lower rate of interest and also to decrease the monthly mortgage payment amount. One of the benefits of refinancing your mortgage is also that refinancing provides the borrower with fresh money at lower interest rates due to which the homeowner can lower his/her monthly payment amount. Another advantage of refinancing your mortgage is that the decrease in the interest rates allows homeowners to replace an existing loan with another with an added benefit of a shorter loan term and no change in the payment amount.
Is Real Estate The Best Way To Make Money or Build Wealth?
While making money in real estate you can minimize the risks and get a high return on your investment but it comes with proper education and experience. You may be fixing and flipping properties. You may be buying fixer-uppers, repairing them, and renting them out. Or you might be buying existing rental properties with tenants, knowing you can improve the cash flow by getting rid of non-paying tenants and adding amenities that allow you to up the rental rates.
It doesn’t matter which strategy you use as long as you pick one and master it. You need to learn a lot of things and also understand the risks involved before buying your first investment property. Location is your priority for a successful real estate investment. It would enhance your chances of selling the property further.
Real estate is one of the best investments available to make a lot of money, assuming you buy properties that have good fundamentals in their favor. It is one of the few businesses where banks are almost eager to loan you money, whereas banks reject roughly half of all business loans. Real estate almost always appreciates at a rate higher than the rate of inflation. Property appreciation rates have averaged 3 to 5 percent annually for the past thirty years.
It takes a dramatic downturn like the Great Depression or the Great Recession of 2007-2012 to hurt property values across the board. Know that real estate is ultimately local, so individual real estate markets can collapse due to lack of demand or dramatic over-building though the national market is steadily growing. One of the points in favor of real estate is that you’re holding a real asset. A company could go bankrupt and wipe out the value of its shares. They could be hit with a massive lawsuit, and the dividends they were paying disappears.
When you own quality real estate, the value won’t go down unless the area as a whole becomes undesirable. As long as you don’t have to sell it in a hurry, you can get your money back. That’s why private mortgage insurance is canceled once you hit 20 percent equity in the property. All of this explains why real estate investing is safer than stock market investing. It is possible to buy real estate for capital gains. Buying condos in the hope of flipping them for a profit is one such case.
Buying land to eventually sell to developers is another. However, real estate offers significant cash flow. You can rent out apartments, condos, single-family houses, and commercial space. This generates monthly cash flow for the owner. The cash flow is offset by tax-deductible expenses like maintenance, property taxes, and insurance. There are a variety of ways to calculate the return on investment for rental real estate. If you use the cap rate equation, a good ROI is 10 percent, while 12 percent is considered excellent.
The cap rate is generally used because the equation is straightforward. (NOI / purchase price x 100 percent). Note that these returns are based on the income you see with every rent check. Appreciation of the property is a capital gain you don’t realize unless you sell the property. When you invest in real estate, you could achieve a million-dollar or greater net worth simply because the properties you own and manage have gone up in value over the years.
Few of us have the cash on hand to buy the property outright. This is why many put a down payment down on a property before repairing it. They may then rent it out or flip it. Renting it out generates steady income that has significant legal protection since you can generally evict non-paying tenants. The cash on cash returns take the mortgage on a property into account, and you can easily see a double-digit ROI using this equation.
Flipping the property or selling it after you’ve purchased it and repaired it will generate a profit. However, this approach is riskier than renting out real estate. You lose money every month you hold the property and pay carrying costs like the mortgage. If you sell the property for less than it is worth, you could lose tens of thousands of dollars. On the other hand, if you buy real estate and rent it out, you’ll get more for the property from investors because it comes with an income stream, the existing tenant.