So you’ve decided to start thinking about the future and finally take the leap into property investment. Congratulations! Being a property owner can be incredibly rewarding both personally and financially, but only if you make the right moves. Fortunately, many people have been where you are now, and you can learn from their mistakes to ensure you get the most out of your investment property endeavor. So with that in mind, here are the top mistakes made by first time investment property owners that you should do your best to avoid:
1. Not Treating it As a Business
Make no mistake; investing in property ownership is a business. You therefore need to keep emotions out of your decisions and make smart, analytical moves. This should go without saying throughout the process, from deciding which property to purchase in the first place to filling it with tenants and maintaining it. On that note, it is also a good idea to consider enlisting the help of an experienced property management company.
2. Relying on Appreciation Alone
A lot of people tend to buy property with the expectation that, with time, the property value will go up and they’ll get a big payoff in the end. While property values do tend to increase with time, the truth is that the monetary difference is often not nearly as much as people expect. Additionally, outside, uncontrollable factors like the fluctuating economy and occurrences in the surrounding local community play a huge role in property value. So when you purchase property, you need to not only make sure that there are unique aspects about it contributing to its value but that you are also willing to put in additional work to make sure that happens.
3. Not Doing Enough Research
Many first time investment property owners also unfortunately do not perform adequate research before making the decision to purchase. But just because a place looks good on the surface does not mean it’s automatically a smart investment. It’s important that you do your research into things like the building history and any structural damage / repairs, the surrounding community and any potential crime / economical issues, etc. Doing so will also help prevent you from overpaying on a property.
4. Not Properly Assessing Your Financial Situation
It may seem like a no-brainer, but a lot of people still underestimate the importance of making sure all their finances are in order prior to investment. You need to make sure you at least have enough money for a down payment, much less be able to continue making payments. Even if you can afford the property outright, you need to make sure you have the funds for things like property taxes, repairs and renovations.