How I Learned to Invest in Real Estate

By: Melissa Etezadi, HappyNest PR and Content Manager

Like many novice investors, I was told at a young age the only way to save money for retirement was to invest in your 401(k), open an IRA, and of course, invest in the stock market. Growing up, I remember watching my dad emotionally react to the twists and turns of the Dow. His mood would fluctuate as the market would swing from high to low. We knew as kids if the numbers on the tv screen were red, it probably wasn’t a good day to ask for spending money.

 

It wasn’t until I graduated college with over $100,000 in student loan debt, and a mediocre first paying job, that I realized I needed to find new ways to diversify my portfolio and grow my nest egg. The real question, though, how? I decided to take to the internet – it’s here where I learned about investing in real estate.

 

So, what makes real estate worth investing in? Unlike traditional investments such as stocks and bonds, real estate is not tied to the stock market’s volatility and fluctuations. Real estate is a tangible asset, so it relies on the economics of a local market instead. There have been many situations where the stock market has been in a downturn, while real estate investments’ value was on the rise.

 

I learned that real estate is a less liquid asset, so it takes longer to convert to cash. This is one of the main reasons many financial experts stress the need for a balanced portfolio of real estate, stocks, and bonds. In the finance world, it’s called diversification.

 

My investment journey was slow – I did not invest in some fantastic stock that turned into millions overnight or purchase a $5M CVS Pharmacy or apartment building. I researched the subject and visited popular sites such as www.reit.comwww.investopedia.comwww.daveramsey.com, and www.myhappynest.com to help learn the terminology.

 

After exploring all my options, I decided to buy shares of REITs as they seemed to be the best way to gain exposure to real estate investing without having property management duties or fronting a large sum of money. I learned that REITS are a long-term investment and traditionally pay 3, 4, or even 5% dividends, helping me double my investment over time. My goal is to continue growing my wealth by maintaining a healthy portfolio of diversified investments so my children won’t have to see me go through the stress my father did.

Investing In Real Estate For the First Time

Whether you love your career and are looking for a secondary source of income or are thinking about changing careers and looking for financial stability, investing can help you achieve both.

Investing may sound scary, but it can be a lucrative, stress-free, and even fun activity for you and your family when done correctly. We’re not suggesting to throw your life savings in the stock market. That is a terrible idea. Instead, take an educated approach by researching investing options and consider investing in real estate to diversify your portfolio.

For the last 20 years, real estate has outperformed the stock market approximately 2-to-1. As long as you have a little money to invest, you can start making some tremendous financial improvements. Here is how to start:

Research the best apps for real estate investors

People have been investing in real estate long before apps were ever a thing. Now, there are plenty of apps for real estate investors that are easy and fun to use! Many people are too intimidated to start investing in real estate because they think they’ll have to shell out tens of thousands of dollars to do so. That couldn’t be farther from the truth. In fact, with as little as $10, you can start your investing journey! Sure, the more money you put in, the more you’ll get out — but starting with a small percentage of your disposable income and some quality apps for real estate investors can undoubtedly help break you into this lucrative industry.

After you’ve downloaded an app and tossed some money in, you’ll be invested in real estate. Then you can set weekly or monthly recurring investments to grow your account value, and your real estate investing nest egg will begin to grow.

Get your finances in order

Again, you don’t need $50,000 to start investing in real estate. But you do need some extra cash on hand, so you’re not risking too much on these ventures. Though investing in real estate has plenty of upsides, it’s still a fallible market. So you need to tread carefully and make sure you have plenty of cash in case of an emergency.

Research everything and start small

Finally, no matter how much you know about investing in real estate, you should always be trying to learn more. Do as much research as you can and make sure you’re comfortable with the real estate before you start putting money into this sector. Also, make sure you’re starting with smaller projects. You can — and should — invest in commercial real estate, but don’t search for gigantic properties right off the bat.

If you’re excited about breaking into this sector and want to invest in real estate, make sure you’re doing plenty of research, saving money, considering top investing apps, and working alongside a trusted investment company to answer all your questions.