Buy low, sell high. That is the basic investment principle of any market. Real Estate, Stocks, anything you invest in, that is the rule. The question is how do you know you are at the low point and when will the downturn reverse itself? Of course there is no way to know for sure, but when it comes to the Real Estate market there are some basic indicators you can watch that will give you the opportunity to make an educated decision.
•· Is it a buyer's market or a seller's market? No question here, the sellers are anxious, and there are fantastic deals to be had.
•· Is financing available? The lenders are not giving money away "no questions asked" like they have in the past, but if you have a reasonable credit score, and your income versus your debts are not out of whack, it is easy to get a loan.
•· What are interest rates like? They are as good as we have ever seen.
•· From an investor standpoint how is the return? Rental rates are strong, occupancy rates are good. Short term appreciation is a concern, but look at the history of the local real estate market over any 3 year period and you see strong appreciation numbers.
•· Should I purchase a condo for my college age student or, rent? If you have a child living in your property it is usually the best case scenario possible. They can help find tenants, they can help keep an eye on the condition of the property, and usually save you considerable money over rent.
So when thinking about how to invest your hard earned money over the next few years, keep real estate in mind. You will be glad you did.