Investing in Real Estate – 101

Although it may not seem like the time or place, investing in real estate is one of the best things an investor can do in today’s depressed economy. House prices are lower than ever and interest rates are projected to remain low at least until 2013, so buying up rental and other investments properties now is a no-brainer. More than that, the real estate market in the United States is slowly beginning to recover. There have been a few bumps in the road, to be sure, but buying up properties now when they are priced at their lowest will mean selling them for higher prices in a couple of years, and what investor can shy away from that?

Of course not all investment properties are the same, so investors have to ask themselves what they want to get into. Smalltime investors may consider buying a house that can be converted to a duplex or at least has a basement apartment for tenants. Becoming a landlord during this economic recession may prove to be easier than one might think; then you have the benefit of drawing in a regular monthly income from the rental itself.

Residential housing is the easier route for first-time investors. Investing in commercial real estate or even land brings about more challenging conditions, but it’s not impossible for beginners to learn the ins and outs of this unique investment world. Any beginner should seek out the expertise of experienced investment property realtors that will be great sources of knowledge when looking at properties. If you plan to rent out houses or even apartment complexes, research local landlord and tenant court cases to see what challenges might be lying ahead. You want to know what to expect so you can legally cover all the bases with that first lease.

Location is everything, even with renting. Buying investment properties to fix up and sell later rely on location even more. Pay careful attention to crime rates and school districts in the neighborhood. Having access to public transportation may also be a bonus. Most people want to live close to where they work, so buy a property that is close enough to a major town or city so people will be drawn by the amenities and short commute. Anything too far out will likely carry a much lower rental price. Ambitious real estate investors may consider enlisting the help of local property management firms that handle the rental affairs as far as collecting payments.

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