If you read the first part to this series, Creative Financing for Young Real Estate Investment, then you already know how to “get creative,” when it comes to making money appear out of thin air for Real Estate Overhead. In this post I want to talk about valuation, but not Real Estate Valuation – instead I’m going to go into how to evaluate your investment criteria.
I am going to focus strictly on residential real estate for right now (properties with 4 or less units) since that’s what I assume most of you will be looking into. Before you can even think about prospecting for properties you need to prospect for a geography. The best way, traditionally, to do this is to check out market trends for certain cities. Forbes published a good article in September 2007 about The Best Rental markets in the U.S. The idea of investing in a far off city is not a good one, at least not initially… You need to be around to manage and micro-manage your tenant base, as well as the property(s) .
An ideal market is one where single family homes aren’t too expensive ($100k-$180k), assuming for that price you can pick up at least a mild three bedroom. Conversely, you need to make sure that the current area receiving rents supplement more than just the mortgage! I tend to Continue reading
I got my start in Real Estate while running a painting company…. I was 19 years old, fresh out of high school, and dying to make a buck or two. I took a job running my own franchise for an evil corporation preying on college students. I would mention them here but they do not deserve the free publicity. One good thing that came out of working for slime balls was learning how to spot them and how to deal with them, without having to be one yourself.
What does Real Estate have to do with Painting right?
Nothing. I was stressed running 4 paint crews and 18 employees and while I was seeing a tangible return, I decided then that blue-collar work was simply not for me. I started reading about housing, especially since I spent everyday walking in and around houses, up on top of them, and spraying the $#!t out of them with my pressure washer (which incidentally may have done some damage hear and there – no worries->it was too high up to see from the ground)
Learning Sales the “Old Fashioned” Way
I decided after over a year with the evil painting umbrella firm that I wanted look into making investments with steady measurable return. I took a job with Morgan Stanley, learned a bit about securities valuation and bidding on the spread, but mostly how to sell ketchup popsicles to Eskimos in white gloves who weren’t hungry. I took this knowledge, and the reference from Morgan Stanley – and went off to find greener pastures of interest. I ended up at a Commercial Real Estate development firm as an “apprentice.” This word I came to find out is synonymous with Gopher, yes gopher – as in “Nick, Go for this and Go for that.” All of the running around and b!tch work got a little annoying, so what did I do? I did something about it – I started a relationship with my immediate superior (who was also a younger guy, and happened to graduate from the same college I attended). I had him submerge me into financial analysis and modeling; you need to make yourself valuable to a company.
Once I had a concept of what I was doing; managing budgets, materials, capital reserve, and preparing for carry (vacancy) I Continue reading