If you're brand new to real estate investing, here are a few things that you can do that will help put you on your way to financial success.
First, it's worthwhile to make yourself a real estate investor business plan. Just like any other business, you need a business plan.
Next, do your homework as to mortgage rates and the various terms that are available through lending institutions. Again, your real estate agent can be quite helpful, since part of their job description is to keep up on that sort of thing. A difference of even a couple percent points on a mortgage or contract can add up to significant profits for you down the line.
Do your best to get yourself prequalified for financing before you begin your search. This can be very helpful if it's important to move quickly on a particular piece of property that may get snapped up by someone else if you do not act fast. It can also provide you with a psychological bargaining chip, to let the seller know that you're serious about buying the property.
It may seem to go without saying, but you need to have a clear idea of what type of property you want. If you're not comfortable being a landlord, for instance, you certainly do not want to start snapping up every rental house that comes your way. You might do better to buy fixer homes, do the repairs, and flip them.
With your goals clear in your mind, go look at properties – lots of them, so you'll become a knowledgeable consumer. It's like shopping for any other commodity. You have to know a great buy when you see one, and then be ready to act. Keep lots of notes while you're looking at properties, because you'll tend to get confused after you've seen a number of possibilities. Work out a rating system, stay focused, take notes, and be ready to snap up a property that offers great income potential.
Make offers based on inspections. This is important, and gives you an easy out if something about the property is not what you thought it was at first. You want to know every problem, so you can calculate how addressing that problem will affect your bottom line.
If you start out with a professional attitude, using a real estate investor business plan, you'll be well on your way to achieving success as a real estate investor.