Spring Presents Great Time to Start Investing in Real Estate
With the warmth of spring creeping back and the last of the snow melting, there is a renewed energy and positive mood in the air. The return of spring also means an influx of houses, condos, townhomes, and more to the real estate market. Investing in real estate is often a very safe way of investing your hard earned money, either as a first time home buyer, or looking for a second property to rent. Let’s look into each situation as each provides a different type of investment strategy.
Investing in Real Estate as a First Time Home Buyer
You’ve been paying rent for the last couple of years and while you enjoy the house or apartment you are renting; how much return on that money have you seen? Zero, maybe a small increase on your tax refund, all in all not a whole lot. An average basement apartment in Barrie rents out for between $800 to $1100 per month; while an average house rents for $1400 to $1800 per month, plus your own utilities. That’s a lot of money that you’ll never see again.
Typically, when paying rent you are paying down your landlord’s mortgage on the property and covering the cost of the home insurance on the property; and possibly even putting a little extra cash directly into the landlord’s pocket. Seems like a pretty one-sided deal. Why not invest in a home of your own, so you pay down your own mortgage and build equity. That equity can help you do a lot of things, such as providing a down payment on the next house once your family grows out of this one or can help you pay off other debts when you refinance at the end of your term.
A mortgage is often going to be less per month than you would pay in rent, of course that is dependent on purchasing a similar house to what you are renting. Another great reason to look at investing in a home is mortgage rates are still very low, meaning you can get a great rate and be able to pay down the principle of your mortgage even faster.
If you’re worried that your credit score or lack of a down payment may hinder you from being approved for a mortgage there is always options available such as co-signers, rent-to-own, and zero-down mortgages. Don’t give up on the dream of investing in a home before you’ve even explored all of your options.
There’s also the plus of being able to do renovations to the house that will help increase the property value, eventually putting money back in your pocket when you go to sell, but also turn the house into a home while you are living there.
Investing in Real Estate for Renting
You’ve already made the smart move of investing in your home but now want to look at real estate as another investing tool to help you make the most of your money. Purchasing a second property to rent can be a solid investment strategy if done right. The first thing you should consider is location of the property and will renters find this a positive area to be in? The obvious choice to purchase a second property in Barrie is around Georgian College or a property in close proximity to Base Borden. These two areas have high turnover rates due to the nature of being a student or in the military. You might have to put in a bit of extra work renting it out every year or two, but the number of renters looking will be much higher.
Once you’ve found the property, it’s time to establish a rental rate. The goal here whether you choose to rent the entire property or rent out rooms individually is to make sure you charge enough to cover your mortgage and home insurance for the property. It’s also good to look into landlord insurance as added protection. If you do decide to charge more than the mortgage and home insurance to put some quick cash in your pocket, make sure to set some of it into a savings account for when repairs are needed at the property. Don’t forget general repairs are your responsibility to fix as the landlord.
So what’s the value of a second property? Well once you look past your responsibilities as a landlord, you have somebody else paying down your mortgage for you. This means you are growing your equity with someone else’s money, sounds good doesn’t it? The key to investing in a second property is to make sure that you be a great landlord. Renter satisfaction increases if they have a landlord who is responsive and helpful when needed but is not intrusive. Also do your research and make sure your tenants will be respectful of your property while they live there. If your property isn’t taken care of you’re not helping the tenants or yourself in the long run.
Investing in a property to flip and sell is a risky venture and far less stable than investing in a property to rent. There are no guarantees that you will be able to flip the property quickly and you may be stuck holding onto a property you can’t afford. There’s also the high investment level of cash that is needed to improve the property quickly. Even if you plan on renovating yourself it will still be expensive and time consuming.
If you want to start flipping properties, do your research and invest wisely. Never try this method of investing in a property on a whim, it will never end well. With that said if done well you can sometimes, the keyword is sometimes, turn a quick profit from a property.
Quick Recap of Items to Consider When Using Real Estate for Investing
•Carrying a mortgage is often less than what you’ll pay for rent
•Options like rent-to-own, zero down mortgage options can help you achieve home ownership faster
•Find the right location for a second property that will consistently be able to find new renters
•Be a good landlord and you’ll get good renters
•Flipping properties is risky but profitable, only try this after doing your research and making a plan
Sutton Group Incentive Realty