Want to find the best investment property for sale in your housing market?
Investing in real estate properties has been, and remains to be, one of the best ways to achieve financial independence. However, while anyone can become a real estate investor, not any property works for real estate investment. For example, you might find a house for sale for a really cheap price, but price alone doesn’t translate into a good deal. Instead, the best investment property is one that has the potential for cash flow and capital growth. But, how can a real estate investor find such properties for sale?
Related: Top 6 Characteristics of Profitable Investment Properties
#1 Finding Investment Properties Through Agents
If you aren’t familiar with the real estate market, acquiring an agent can be an effective way to search for an investment property for sale. You can speak to a real estate agent who is specialized in the town or neighborhood where you want to invest in real estate and inquire about potential property investment opportunities. A good agent will know the best places to buy a rental property, which allows them to quickly narrow down the options that apply to you and provide additional real estate investment advice.
If you’re interested in rehabbing properties, then including a real estate agent in your team is also a great way to find the best investment property. Specifically, you want to find an agent who is specialized in REO properties (Real Estate Owned) – properties that are held by a lender as the result of a defaulted loan. Many lenders align themselves with real estate agents that specialize in selling these types of properties.
Typically, a real estate agent will assist property investors in:
- Finding an investment property for sale that best meets your criteria and needs
- Providing an accurate estimation of the property’s worth
- Submitting and negotiating the offer to the seller/seller’s agent on your behalf
- Having the contract and other documents ready and reviewed
Overall, working with an agent is the most traditional way for beginner property investors to find houses for sale – no matter what your investment strategy is. Keep in mind, however, that in order for a real estate agent to do his/her job correctly, you need to be clear about what you’re looking for. So, inform your agent about what type of property you want to invest in, your budget for buying a property, your investment goals, etc.
Related: The Best Ways to Find a Real Estate Agent
#2 Finding Investment Property for Sale Online
If you want to find the best investment property on your own, there are websites where real estate investors can conduct a property search for potential investment properties. For example, Auction.com is great for house flippers as it focuses exclusively on the sale of real estate owned and foreclosed properties. If you’re looking for houses for sale that you can buy and rent out (whether traditionally or as a short-term rental) for cash flow, then Mashvisor is the best website for you.
Mashvisor provides you with a number of tools that allow you to customize your property search and analyze different neighborhoods and investment properties on the housing market. With the Heatmap Tool, you can enter the city where you want to be investing in real estate and see which area has rental properties for sale that match your criteria – whether it’s the listing price, cash on cash return, or Airbnb occupancy rate.
Furthermore, our Investment Property Calculator allows the real estate investor to analyze the property and estimate the potential return on investment. So, you can see the cash on cash return, cap rate, rental income, and cash flow of any investment properties for sale in the US housing market. You’ll also get access to real estate comps with readily-calculated data to easily compare and find the best rental property for your investment.
Want to find the best investment property for sale even quicker? Use Mashvisor’s Property Finder Tool. Simply set your criteria (including the city, property type, budget, rental strategy, and the number of bedrooms and bathrooms). Then, you’ll have in front of you a list of the best properties that meet your preferences AND have the highest ROI in the location.
To give these investment tools a try, start out your 14-day free trial with Mashvisor now!
#3 Finding Investment Property by Networking
Networking is a great way for a real estate investor to find investment property for sale that the general public may not be aware of. Since it’s not known to everyone, you may be able to buy this property at a lower price point. Useful groups to network with include:
- Personal Investor Network: This is the database of other property investors that you have either been accumulating over the time that you have been investing in real estate, or it is the database that you should start to keep from this point forward. It could include other landlords who own rental properties in the same neighborhood as you or a colleague who happens to also be a real estate investor.
- Investment Clubs/Forums: These have become relatively common in the last several years. They’re useful because there is often an email list where members share information about rental properties for sale. They also provide education and networking opportunities that could be useful when searching for the best investment property. If you don’t belong to any, it might be a good idea to join one.
- Personal Acquaintances: People in the real estate industry are not the only ones who can introduce you to a great investment opportunity. Friends, family, and professional contacts, such as attorneys, can be great resources to find a rental property for sale. They may be going through a financial hardship themselves (like a short sale or foreclosure), have acquaintances of their own who are, or saw a property for sale.
#4 Finding Investment Properties for Sale at Auctions
Real estate auctions are good places for finding houses for sale at discount prices (typically foreclosed homes). However, these are a good way to find investment properties for real estate investors who have the ability to pay cash for the investment property. There are several types of auctions, including:
- Online Auctions: on sites such as Auction.com.
- Sheriff Sale Auctions: These are usually conducted in your county’s city hall, hall of records, courthouse, or even at the Sheriff’s office.
- Private Auction Companies: These are typically contracted by lenders to sell large numbers of properties at one time. They are generally well-advertised and conducted at a local hotel or conference center.
Most auction lists are published several weeks in advance before the sales. By reviewing these lists, a real estate investor will have the opportunity to scope out the best investment property prior to the sale date. However, while you can see the property, you may not inspect it or request an appraisal before closing.
Buying an investment property at an auction also has the risk of getting carried away with bidding wars. In addition, most auctioneers will require you to put 10% of the purchase price down at the time of a winning bid. If you do not settle within 30 days of the auction, you lose your deposit. Nonetheless, auctions can be a great place to find profitable investment property for sale.
Related: Buying a Foreclosed Home at House Auctions: What Real Estate Investors Should Know
The Bottom Line
There are many different ways that real estate investors can find rental properties for sale in any housing market. However, only by using a variety of resources will you give yourself the greatest chance of finding the best investment property and the right deal for you. What are you waiting for? Click here to start looking for and analyzing the best investment properties in your city and neighborhood of choice using Mashvisor’s tools!