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  • Foto del escritorGonzalo Daniel Bauza

4 Pricey Real Estate Mistakes That Investors Make

Actualizado: 15 abr 2019

Real Estate Mistakes

Real estate can be an incredibly valuable investment—if you know how to do it properly.

Unfortunately, many investors make the same critical mistakes. And those mistakes will directly impact your ROI.

Don’t jump into the market unprepared. Here are four expensive real estate mistakes many inexperienced investors make, and what you should do instead.

4 real estate mistakes that investors make:

1. Lack of Research

Let’s say you’re trying to buy a car.

You wouldn’t just walk to a dealership and buy a car. You would take time to investigate your options. You would compare models, shop around for available deals, ask questions, check out the car yourself. It’s a big investment, after all. You want to make sure you choose the right one.

Why would an investment property be any different?

If anything, the due diligence you conduct on a potential investment property should be even more thorough—at least as thorough as the due diligence you would perform on a house you planned to personally live in.

For example: what can you find out about the neighborhood? What sort of neighborhood is it? Is it a generally stable neighborhood? What kind of businesses are here? Is the neighborhood being gentrified (which would increase your property value)? Is there a student population?

Never mind all the questions you should ask about the property itself.

It will slow the process down, but if you don’t take the time to answer these questions, you could find yourself stranded with a money pit.

2. Not Understanding Debt

Another common and equally critical mistake: not understanding how debt works in real estate investing.

In general, real estate investors use debt for one of two reasons:

To improve potential returns or to expand buying power

Both are worthwhile reasons. Investors get in trouble when they leap into debt blindly, without fully understanding the risks and consequences attached to debt.

A common mistake among amateur investors is taking on expensive debt to buy a dream property only to find that the interest rate on that debt is higher than the investment yield. Congratulations: you’re in a negative cash flow situation.

3. Underestimating Expenses

Investment properties are an amazing way to earn passive income. But many new investors get so excited about the potential profits that they forget a basic fact.

When you invest in a property, you’re a landlord. And that means you’re saddled with a whole host of expenses to keep the property usable and attractive to potential tenants.

This includes things like:

Property taxes

Maintenance costs

Management costs

Ongoing capital expenditures

Marketing expenses

Accounting and bookkeeping fees

Renovation costs

Tenant screening costs

Insurance Emergency expenses

And those are just the built-in expenses. You should also build space into your budget to save for potential vacancies and possible future legal fees.

4. Over- or Under-Renovating

Finally, many new investors make the mistake of over- or under-renovating a property before they attempt to put it on the market.

Regardless of the state of the property or your personal tastes, the property must be renovated to meet the standards of the neighborhood before it can successfully go on the market. This requires a careful eye and an ability to spot the right property.

You can make a great deal of money flipping properties, but you have to know how to tell the difference between a flipper and a money pit. A flipper is a property that wouldn’t sell because of apparent issues but, on closer inspection, has problems that are primarily cosmetic. A money pit is a property that requires high-level renovation, demanding more input than the property may eventually be worth.

Many investors also make the mistake of over-renovating a property. Remember, you don’t need to be better than every property in the area, you just need to cater to the tastes of the local market.

Ready to Jump into Real Estate Investing?

Are you ready to make your money work for you in real estate? If so, we’re ready to help.

We make it easy for you to find great properties with even better returns, whether you’re looking to invest in commercial real estate, apartment buildings, or some other type of property.

Ready to start the conversation? Use our contact page to get in touch.

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