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How to Get an Education In Real Estate Investing

By - 2007

One way to get an education in real estate investing is to simply start investing. You are probably glad you didn't try that approach in the last few years. What can you do to get educated without risking anything? Here is a quick guide.

Read Real Estate Investing Books

Start by reading anything and everything you can get your hands on. Some of the books may be out of date, but you still will learn something from them. You don't have to spend any money to do this. You can read the books available at your local public library, and then start on the books in any bookstore that allows you to sit and read for hours.

As you read more you'll start to get an idea about what kind of investing you want to do. There are dozens of ways to make money with real estate (including investing time and money into a site like this where you can just write about it all). You'll naturally be suited to some types and not others, both due to your talents and your situation. You can begin to tailor your education in real estate investing.

Look Around You

As you read and study what others have done, also start to look around at what is available where you live. Pick up real estate guides and browse newspaper ads. When you see a property that is for sale write down the address and look it up on online to see what the seller is asking.

It is important that you get educated as to prices in your area if you are serious about investing. Take notes so you can compare properties that come and go. This will train you to spot a bargain.

Play with the Numbers

You should look not just at the prices of properties around you, but also play with the numbers to get used to how to arrive at a decision that makes sense for you. Find out what it costs to close a deal in your area, and what taxes and insurance run as well. If you are hoping to fix and flip houses, see what it costs to make typical repairs and improvements, so you can put it all on paper and see if there is profit potential in a given home. If you are going to invest in rentals, look at what rental rates are in your area, and see which properties might produce positive cash flow after every expense. Buy an amortization book and carry it with you so you can see what your payment would be as you look at a house or apartment building. You have to know how to run the numbers, so practice, practice, practice.

Learn From Others

If there is an inexpensive real estate investing club near you, join it and start mingling with whoever seems to be making the most money. Alternately, spend time with members who are working in the areas you hope to invest in. Write down people's names and phone numbers if possible. You can make a lot of great contacts in a club full of active investors.

Find a real estate agent that invests, and talk to him about what you hope to do. Ask him what you will need to be prepared and what opportunities are most likely. When the time comes, have him or her show you a few properties.

Take Action

Of course at some point your education in real estate investing will have to include hands-on experience. If you are not sure you want to do it alone you might consider having a partner for your first investment. That can be tricky, so be careful. Look for someone who has more experience than you, and has some success stories. Make sure everything is spelled out on paper before agreeing to anything, and have an attorney review your agreement. If it doesn't feel right, back out before the first offer is made, and at least you will have added to your education.

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Houses Under Fifty Thousand | Education In Real Estate Investing