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What to consider when buying your first rental property

You have decided it is time to start investing in real estate and search for properties to rent out. It will be a tool for you to earn extra income that can go towards savings or a life event such as retirement. Figuring out where to start can take a great deal of time and research if this is unfamiliar territory.

Here are several things to consider before jumping into property rental.

Location is important.

This may be something you have already considered. However, it truly is an important factor. Properties that are near or with easy access to highways, public transportation and schools are often the most sought after. Be conscious of the opportunities near a potential property as well as the atmosphere and type of people that live there. You may have an idea of who your renter might be while those who live in that neighborhood have different expectations and lifestyles.

Start small.

Ambition can be a useful tool when getting your foot in the door when investing in property. Ambition can also lead to taking on more than you can handle. You may want to start on a smaller scale and slowly build as you learn and become more familiar with being a landlord. Starting with a small list of possible properties and working up from there can help avoid being overwhelmed.

Make sure the property is a good fit.

Making sure a property is right for you is a crucial step. You may find something in a great location but it needs a lot of repair that you do not think you can manage. Saying yes to a property and realizing later you are unable to put in the time and money needed to make it an ideal living space could set you back and get you off to a rough start.

Don't overdo it.

You may find a property that needs some work and you have the time and funds to create a great space. If you are able to do so, you want to avoid going overboard. You might not want to turn the property into a place that is at a higher value than the surrounding homes. If the neighborhood is populated with those who are just out of college or with lower budgets, your property may not have as good of a chance to sell if you need to get rid of the rental property later on. And in the meantime, when you are trying to rent it out, a family just starting out, for example, may not want a rental property in a neighborhood crowded with college students and loud parties.

There are many things to consider and research before making your first rental property purchase. Take your time visiting potential properties and working with those who can help you along the way. Know the location you are buying into and who your rental audience will be. You may have to put in some extra work, but if it goes well, you can earn extra income now and reap the rewards of a great property investment in the future.

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