Real Estate Investing For Beginners – What Every New Investor Wishes He’d Been Told Before

As a new real estate investor, when you begin researching information on real estate investing for beginners, you’ll find that there are a lot of gurus and mentors out there looking to sell you high priced information. You’ll also find plenty of chatter-boxes at local real estate investing forums and other watering holes that will share (brag?) all day long about their investing trials and tribulations, especially if they have tenants or rehabs. (Those types of projects tend to be fraught with problems, something that can scare beginner real estate investors off – when maybe it should be attracting them!) You can also find some excellent offline resources at the library, bookstore and your local investor club. Maybe you’ll even find someone who’s out in the trenches on a regular basis and is willing to take you out on the streets to show you some of his properties.What you won’t find as often, especially for free, is a coherent, executable business plan detailing what it takes to get going with real estate investing as a beginner.What you really need is a handbook entitled: Real Estate Investing For Beginners that lays everything out for you A to Z, with what to do at every step along the way.Unfortunately, putting together a super and useful reference like that is time consuming and you have to consider that a) If someone is already making money investing in real estate, her time is valuable, and b) if she’s going to invest her valuable time in putting together a real estate investing guide for beginners, she’s got to have an angle.That’s an excellent thing to keep in mind – everyone in the real estate investing education industry seems to have an angle. They are directly incentivized to make you feel that real estate investing is easy, you can do it, and if you just part with some money, they will give you the handbook with all the answers.BEWARE: If you can’t figure out how they’re getting paid, you’re missing something… Everyone wants to get paid in this business.Well, I hate to tell you… I don’t have that comprehensive handbook for you either.That’s the bad news.The good news is that I can give you some very important words of wisdom that helped me when I was getting started in real estate investing as a beginner. (And I started right out of college without a good job or anything, so don’t think it can’t be done.)Real Estate Investing Observations – What Every Real Estate Investing Beginner Needs To Know:1) You will have to trade time or money to get what you want in real estate. You can’t get something for nothing, so even if you buy an expensive course to get someone else’s experience and shave years off your learning curve, you’ll still HAVE a learning curve. Plus, you’ll need to find leads, and that type of marketing takes (you guessed it) time and/or money.2) Leverage cuts both ways. When the market is going up, leverage can be a great ally in helping you acquire more property with less of your own money. However, when the market is soft or declining, as also happens with real estate market cycles, having a lot of leverage can put you “upside down” on your equity and cash flow – a very risky situation. Protect yourself by “making your money when you buy” and passing up those “skinny” deals.3) It’s all about NEGOTIATING with the motivated sellers. A lot of courses make you believe that if you find the motivated sellers, you can just pluck up the deals like daisies in the orchard. That’s almost true. Whether you’re working in commercial or residential real estate, you’ll get much better deals when you negotiate with a motivated seller. However, the key is that you must NEGOTIATE. You have to make offers that will work for you and engage the sellers in conversation. Very rarely will the buildings be lying these listed for 50 cents on the dollar (if they are, they’ll be snapped up by other investors). You have to find sellers that you think may be motivated and offer them your low cash offer or terms offer in order to see if they’re willing to work with you. Engage them in the conversation by making lots of offers, and NEGOTIATING with the ones that are motivated.4) Figure out your rate of return. Sometimes, when you don’t have a deal, it’s easy to think “any” deal would be good. However, sometimes the best deals are the ones you PASS on – you “make” your money by saving yourself from some expensive mistakes. Don’t waste time on property that doesn’t make sense when you run the numbers. Don’t get emotionally attached just because someone says they’re motivated or willing to work out terms with you. Run the numbers. Always focus on the numbers.5) You get paid for solving problems. This is a business with a lot of problems. Sellers can get very emotional, or have a lot of financial trouble, at the time that you’ll be working with them. That’s stressful for anyone, especially when the transfer of a large asset like a house, apartment building or office/retail center is involved. Realize that you may go through some challenging emotions of your own. That’s natural. If you can hold it together and survive the up-and-down roller coaster, you should do okay.No one says real estate is easy unless they have a course to sell you. It can offer some great returns, but there’s a reason not everyone goes after them. Not every property is a winner and finding and acquiring the winners can be a challenge. However, if you are committed to making your real estate investments work for you, then focus on getting yourself educated and staying in for the long run.

Becoming a Commercial Real Estate Broker

The Commercial Real Estate Industry touches virtually every aspect of business in the United States and most of the free world. Very few companies can grow without acquiring more land or additional office space, patients can’t use the services of a hospital unless it’s constructed and consumers can’t shop at a Walmart without the development of Real Property.Commercial Real Estate encompasses all aspects of sales, leasing, management, investment in or improvement of retail property, investment property, farmland, businesses, industries, medical facilities and dozens of other types of property. Our job in the industry is to assist in the lease, management or sales of property, and to advise our clients of their best courses of action when deciding how to invest in or improve real property or a commercial asset.You will work directly with industry leaders, community leaders, government officials, lawyers, zoning officers, accountants, mortgage companies, banks, title companies, appraisers, utility companies and everyone in between to put together sales or develop property to its full potential for a client. While you can’t make decisions for our clients, you can assist them in making better informed decisions, and you can help our clients to understand what the highest and best use may be for a particular property, or what type of investment vehicle might be best for your client.You will work with property owners who may want to sell a property, lease a property, have a property managed or determine what use might be better for the property than the current use. You will work with users of properties to find the best location for their business or investment, to determine if it’s better for the user to lease a property or purchase and to understand the tax implications of their decisions. Additionally, You will work with investors to determine which real estate venture might be their best investment to meet their particular goals and needs.Commercial real estate agents and brokers work with individuals, investors, organizations and corporations to develop property to its highest potential. Their careers include many specializations. Some commercial associates specialize in particular types of property, such as office property, develop-able farmland or even amusement parks. Other commercial associates specialize in particular forms of consulting work for Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs), insurance companies or utility companies. Still others work in specialized areas such as resort management or assist government agencies with the redevelopment of industrial sites or reclamation of land.Commercial Real Estate is an exciting and rewarding field of study and can lead to dozens of different career opportunities. Whether someone is starting their first small business, developing a parcel of land, or considering an investment in real estate rather than an investment in a mutual fund or money market, the understanding of commercial real estate is fundamental to their decisions.To begin your career in this sector of the industry you’ll need to understand exactly what you’re selling, how it is priced, how it is financed and what legal documents must be used to convey the sale or lease. In other words, what are the responsibilities of a commercial real estate broker. Let’s take a look at the key elements necessary to be successful in commercial real estate.You will need to examine the diverse forms that commercial property takes and the important terms used by those in the field to explain and understand a type of property. Next you will need to explore the different methods of determining value in the eyes of property users, investors, real estate professionals and appraisers. You will also need to learn how commercial real estate can be financed and how it may be leased. There is also a need to perform an examination of the legal documents including listing contracts, sales agreements and lease contracts.Your responsibilities as a commercial real estate professional include:For Sellers or Property Owners:
Hold or Sell Analysis – Analyze the market to determine what course of action is best for a property owner. Is it better to hold onto the property longer, or would an owner be better suited selling the commercial property? This analysis may include projections of cash flows, and determination of internal rate of return.
Property Management – Assist the owner by leasing and / or managing the day to day situations that arise in any real estate investment. Management may include suggestions of how to create more value in the property. 3 story multi-tenant Office Building with central common atrium.
Property Leasing – Finding tenants for a property owner’s commercial real estate. This may include advice on creating a niche for the property, or ways to attract more solid long term tenants.
Property Sale or Marketing – Determining the best course of action in order to maximize the sales price on a property and find the best possible buyer.
For Buyers, Tenants or Investors:
Investment Analysis – Provide an investor or buyer with comparisons of various properties or types of property and their cash flows or investment returns in order to determine what situation may be best for the investor or buyer.
Site Selection – Assist the investor or buyer with locating a site that meets the client’s needs. Assist with demographic data to support the client’s business or investment goals. An agent may also be required to assist with determining the site’s suitability based on zoning regulations, environmental conditions and financing considerations.
Cash Flow Analysis / Return on Investment – What kind of return can an investor expect on a particular real estate investment? Agents provide projections of potential future income and analysis of potential return on the property.
For both Sellers / Owners and Buyers / Investors:
Property or Business Valuations – Any property owner wants to know what their property is worth to a buyer and what the highest sales price or lease price is possible in the current market. Buyers or Investors want to know what a fair price may be for the same property or business, and will want to know what the best investment may be at this point in time.
Feasibility Studies – Conduct a market study with the help of Real Estate Appraisers and engineers to determine the highest and best use of a property, or forecast a project’s likelihood of success.
Exchange Opportunities – Tax-deferral benefits may make it worthwhile to exchange the property, or use a 1031 deferred exchange.
Commercial Real Estate Professionals can be rewarded for their quality work and adherence to ethical standards. Learning the fundamental methods and tools used are critical to the success of both the professional and their clients.

How a Commercial Real Estate Broker Can Help You

Commercial real estate is a booming business; however, whether you are buying or selling commercial real estate, chances are that you are going to need a bit of help. A good real estate broker can be invaluable to you, and they can provide you with a great deal of help that no one else could ever give to you. If you want to have a successful career in the commercial real estate business, then more than likely you will need to work with a commercial real estate broker from time to time. The following are some of the great ways that a commercial real estate broker can be of help to you.Local Land ValuesHaving a commercial real estate broker working with you can be very helpful when it comes to local land values. As an investor, you may not always be investing in commercial real estate that is in your area, and it can be hard to find out what the land values are in the area that you are considering investing in. When you work with a commercial real estate agent, they usually have a good grasp on local land values and can help you make good decisions based upon this information. This saves you having to do a great deal of research on your own to find out the same information.Access to City OfficialsIf you have been working in the commercial real estate field long, you know that there are many times in this line of work when you have to deal with various city officials. At times this can be difficult, since you may not be familiar with them and you may have a hard time finding time to speak with them. When you work with a commercial real estate broker, many times you will find that they already have direct access to the city officials, which can expedite your deals much of the time.Negotiation and Constructing OffersAnother great reason to have a commercial real estate broker is that they can do a great deal of the negotiating for you on a deal. It is usually better to have a broker as a go-between instead of dealing directly with the other person in a deal. A broker can usually more effectively negotiate the terms of a deal. They can also help you to construct offers as well so that you will be able to present a good offer on a piece of commercial property.Exit StrategiesMore than likely there will be some point in time when you will find it imperative that you get out of a commercial real estate deal. This can be hard to do on your own, but when you have a commercial real estate broker to help you, then can help you to come up with a solid exit strategy if you need it. When you get out of a deal, you need to have a great strategy that is totally legal, or you may end up losing a great deal of money. Having the commercial real estate broker there to help you can ensure that you exit the deal in a legal way that will not hurt you as well.Referrals to Other ProfessionalsCommercial real estate brokers can also be of help to you by referring you to other professionals that can be helpful to you as well. This is especially great if you are new to the commercial real estate industry, you have just moved into a new area, or you are investing outside of the area when you live. It can be difficult to find good professionals to work with, such as lawyers, contractors, inspectors, and engineers. When you are dealing with a commercial real estate agent that you trust, they can refer you to other people that you can trust as well. This saves you the hassle of trying to find some of these professionals on your own without anyone’s recommendations to go on, which can be disastrous in some cases.LendersAnother area that a commercial real estate broker can help you with is the financing for your commercial real estate purchase. These broker work with a variety of different lenders from day to day, and if you are looking for financing for your venture, more than likely they can steer you in the right direction. They may even know of some private lenders that may be of some help to you as well.First Grab at Targeted PropertiesHaving a commercial real estate broker can be very beneficial to you because they can also allow you to have first grab at some targeted properties that they know of. No doubt there are times when you find a great property, only to find out that it is already under contract and you spoke too late. If the broker knows what you are looking for, they may be able to pocket the listing so you can have the first chance at it.When you do find a great commercial real estate broker, it is important that you hold onto them. A great broker can be invaluable and can help you out in a variety of ways that will help make you successful in the commercial real estate market. Working together with the same great broker over and over can be mutually beneficial to both of you. They will get the rewards of your business, and you will be able to enjoy the many benefits of working with an excellent commercial real estate broker that you can trust. When you find a good broker, they are definitely worth the money that you will pay out to use them.