Rental properties of one to four units are both a good choice for many of today's investors, and a good area of specialization for many of today's real estate professionals.
Why rental properties? For one thing, a growing number of people will seek out new places to live, and an increasingly attractive choice will be renting. In fact, vacancy rates have already begun to ease. A recent study cited by The Wall Street Journal reported that apartment rents rose in the first quarter of 2010 after five straight quarters of declines.
In the past, investors bought rental properties based on the reasonable expectation that their market value would rise along with rents, and that they could take advantage of tax benefitsl.
In addition to tax advantages, investors have been able to realize a positive cash flow early in the process. In fact, in many markets, it may be possible to structure transactions that provide an immediate positive cash flow. This is not always the case, of course, and investors will benefit greatly from professional guidance.
For investers who like a hands on experience, operating rental properties can prove to be a satisfying experience. The more work the investor is willing to do for himself or herself, from painting interior walls when tenants move on, to handling the books, the higher the profits will be