I have been learning about a new side of real estate (new to me).  I have been learning about investment properties.  I have been going out and looking at different properties and exploring different types of properties for investment purposes.  I am learning about the various ways an investor can make money in real estate.

I am learning what would make a good investment (positive cash flow vs. negative cash flow), and what would not make a good investment.  I am learning that investing in real estate is not a game of luck or chance like the game of Monopoly ( my all time favorite game).  Investing in real estate takes real skill.  It takes looking at hundreds of properties before finding the right one to actually invest in.

I have looked at hundreds probably thousands of houses over the last sixteen years of being a licensed real estate agent, but I have never looked at properties through the eyes of an investor.  How that changes things!  I have gone out of my comfort zone in terms of the areas I typically do my MLS searches in, and I am relearning Austin through the eyes of an investor.

I have been speaking to other investors to see if there is a method to follow.  I have learned that there is a method, but no one investor has the same method.  No one buys the same types of properties, same price ranges, same areas.  Some investors concentrate on commercial properties, some duplexes or other multifamily properties (four plexes or apartments), some on single family 3 bedroom 2 bathroom houses.  One investor that I have been following around predominately buys brand new houses in the $150,000-$250,000 range.

One of the very biggest lessons I have learned is that in order to find a good deal it really helps to know some people in the business.  Using a realtor to help you find an investment property can make this process a bit less scary especially if this is your first investment.  As realtors, we see so many properties and we have learned to identify which ones will be good for investors.  Also, realtors know other realtors which helps us find the deals before they ever go on the MLS (Multiple Listing Service).  We often receive phone calls or find out about listings at our sales meetings.  We can then call you right away to see the property before any one else has a chance to view it.

Investors need a crew of people to help them out such as real estate agents, contractors, painters, and electricians.  Real estate agents usually have these people in their back pocket and having a great real estate agent on your side can make investing that much easier for you.

As an investor, you should leave the finding of real estate to the professional realtors and spend your time making more money to invest!

I love real estate and this has truly given me a reason to fall in love all over again.