Q: Hi, great site and thank you for your advice! I am interested in getting into real estate investing soon, and I had a few simple questions. I live in North Jersey and our real estate market is calming down but still strong. What do you feel is the best way for me to start my investing career, buy buying a singe family home and renting it, or doing a rehab project to gain cash? I don’t have that much spare money, but a few thousand dollars can go a long way, especially with all new different loan programs out there for 100% financing. Secondly, which ever route I take I’m going to have to find good deals, where can I look for them? The newspaper has a few but every investor out there will be reading them as well, where do you find your deals, newspaper, foreclosures, agents?
A: In order to figure out the best way for you to start your investing career you need to examine what your goals are. There are many different ways to invest in real estate and they all come with positives and negatives. You must consider if you need to raise cash quickly or slowly and how much hassle you can deal with during the process.
If we look at some of the most common ways to invest:
- Wholesaling – Quick cash, low risk, high hassle
- Rehabbing – Fairly quick cash, medium to high risk, medium to high hassle
- Creative Investing – Slow cash, low to medium risk, medium hassle
- Landlording – very slow cash, low to medium risk, low to high hassle
- Even though owning rentals doesn’t look that good when you consider what I have written above, it can be the most rewarding real estate investing strategy in the long term. Conversely, wholesaling can be a very quick cash generator, but the chunks of cash that you earn are relatively small and getting the deals and selling them to other investors can be A LOT of work.
- Your personal tastes will also come into play with the type of strategy that you work. If you are a “people person” you might like wholesaling or creative investing. On the other hand, if you are rehabbing or buying rentals you do not have to be as much of a “sales” type personality.
You also need to consider your financial situation as well as how good your credit is. There are many different factors to consider and I suggest that you learn a little bit about these different strategies and figure out which one(s) appeal to you the most.
Finding deals is mostly a matter of CONSISTENTLY being in the market and having many different “lines in the water”. I do think that you should take the time to read the classifieds in the paper and to also get new properties sent to your email from the MLS that match your criteria (a local real estate agent can set you up on that). That being said, you should really develop some of your own marketing to get motivated sellers to call you.
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