First of all, not all real estate is a good investment but in general, investing in real estate is almost ALWAYS a good idea. Does that make sense? Specific markets warrant making certain purchases. For example, in the Portland Metro area, the condo market is still a bit saturated. What does this mean? Inventory is abundant. Prices have therefore dropped. Not a wrong time to buy with the thought of holding onto a property when property values have fallen, but you need to start with a good broker that can guide you.
Hard to get good advice on owning a rental property from someone who has never owned rental property or does not sell property that people buy to rent. Working with a broker with flipped homes, if that is the space you want to explore, certainly helps! Above all, you need a broker that understands the market and what pockets are trending. You need someone who follows the area’s statistics and knows where it makes sense to purchase and when—going back to buying a condo as an investment. Many condo associations have rental caps, which means someone can rent out only a certain number of properties in the complex. Your broker needs to know how all of that works and needs to advise you on what properties make sense and which do not!
Before jumping into real estate as your first investment, ensure that you are financially able to do so. You need reserves to cover the costs of repairs if you plan to hold and rent. If you are renovating to sell, make sure you have enough money to cover overages in expenses.
Find someone who is knowledgeable about local and states landlord/tenant laws. Make sure the company that you choose has a good plan in place for tenant screening, regular property inspections, maintenance, and repairs.
Don’t get in over your head with payments and amounts you can’t afford.
Overall, investing can provide the freedom you want and desire, but it all needs to be structured correctly!
Real estate can be a great way to build financial freedom and create retirement income, but it needs to be done right, like anything.