There are many ways to find a good investment property and, living in a global market, the use of the internet allows you to obtain information from the comfort of your own home. These days you can source investment opportunities through websites that help you seek out profitable opportunities.
We use major real estate websites as one of our main sources of finding opportunities and the great part about it is that we can search for them at our leisure, when it suits us. The amazing thing about the internet is that it’s open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, which means you can locate property at your convenience.
We often expand our search by contacting real estate agents in the areas of interest and provide them with details of the type of opportunity we’re seeking. Building a rapport with the real estate agents frees us up to do other things while they’re busy working to bring us the deals. It’s a great way to save time and fast track your investments. Real estate agents are a wonderful source of information and are keen to assist genuine investors with growing their portfolios.
As the opportunities come up, try to review the property from an investor’s perspective. Don’t worry about whether or not it’s a property you’d like to live in yourself. Think about what tenants would select when searching for a rental property. If you have been a tenant yourself at some point in your life, even better as you would have a firsthand understanding of the sorts of things tenants want.
Consider looking at properties in your own area, as you are most familiar with your local area and this will make the research easier. You will begin to create a mental checklist of the features tenants want, hence your search will become focused and specific. There’s no point buying a two-bedroom apartment if most tenants in your area want to rent a four-bedroom house. Your investment purchase has a greater chance of being rented quickly and continuously should the property reflect what tenants want to rent in that area.
We purchased our first property in our local area. We found it through taking our dogs for their regular walk. It’s amazing how much you see when you walk around looking at houses, compared to driving around or searching the net. Locating properties in your own area (whether you buy or not) gives you a solid foundation to build on. By living in the area you know where the schools are located, the shopping and medical centres are, the hairdresser, video store and even the banks etc. You know what public transport is available and how long it takes to travel from your area to another.
All the information you gather is important, as these are the sorts of things tenants look for when renting. Is your area highly sought after by tenants? If not, why? You want to locate and purchase your investment properties where tenants like to live. This helps to lower your risk of having long vacancies. The longer your tenant stays, the better it is for you as the investor. Should your tenant decide to leave, you want to be able to have a tenant moving in within a week or two.
In summing up, begin by using the internet to locate your target opportunities. If you’re a new investor, focus on your own area as it will assist you to build up a foundation of knowledge. Then, as you gain more knowledge and confidence, replicate your level of knowledge about your area to other areas of interest. It’s important that you have an intimate understanding of the area before you buy. Locate properties that tenants want to rent and establish the level of demand that exists for rental properties in your chosen area, as this will ensure low vacancy rates.
Until next time, happy investing.
Investor and Author of 47 Biggest Mistakes Made By Propety Investors and How to Avoid Them.