Investors are the key to the housing recovery, said RE/MAX CEO Margaret Kelly during her keynote speech earlier this month in New Orleans.
But more than that, investors stand to gain a lot in this economy. The circumstances surrounding the housing market are so ideal that if you don’t act, you’ll regret it later, she said.
“You will never have conditions like this again,” she said.
During her outline of the nation’s economic and housing outlook, Kelly emphasized that plentiful housing inventory, in addition to rock-bottom interest rates and reasonable prices, make it a buyer’s market. And of those buyers, investors are the ones who have the real potential to help rebound the economy.
Reasons to Rent
Kelly specified that it’s a great time for investors to buy properties and rent them out, creating a regular income from the property until conditions return to a seller’s market.
Gradually decreasing homeownership rates, an increase in immigration and other economic factors are indicators that the demand for rental property is strong. In that vein, conditions aren’t ideal for immediately flipping properties, she added.
Kelly acknowledged that it’s not possible to make a blanket observation about whether housing prices are ideal for selling because it’s truly a local matter. It can vary from neighborhood to neighborhood, so don’t rely on national trends to tell you if it’s a good time to buy or sell, she said.
The Distressed Market
Considering all the foreclosures that are in the pipeline in the form of shadow inventory, investors who rent properties are not only getting their pick of the deals, they’re also helping the victims of those foreclosures find shelter, Kelly said.
One of the best ways to figure out how to navigate the local housing market – especially when distressed properties are involved – is to with a real estate agent, she added, suggesting that investors take the time to find the agent that’s right for them by interviewing several agents from different companies.
Property agents can be beneficial as well – especially for property owners who have never been in the landlord role, Kelly said.
That due diligence can go a long way for the investor.
“Even though there are a lot of challenges,” Kelly said, “The opportunities so outweigh those.”