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List: Posted: 04/04/11
Real estate investing can be extremely profitable, but it’s not a guaranteed route toward easy money. Before you get into it, you should make sure that you’re not doing it because you’re simply after a way to make huge amounts of money from little work.
While the real estate market is often described as having crashed recently, in reality, it simply returned to realistic prices after a huge bubble. Investing in real estate without having a good idea of what you’re doing, as many people recently found out, can be ruinous for your finances.
Real estate investing requires that you be realistic and start small if you're a beginner. For example, if you buy 5 acres of swamp land because you’ve heard a rumor that a major big-box store wants to locate there, you’re gambling, you’re not investing. Investing in real estate to make large profits means doing your research, not relying on tip-offs or gossip, no matter how trustworthy you believe the source is.
If you want to buy commercial real estate as an investment, for instance, you’ll probably do better to invest in existing developments than to hope that one patch of land or another will become incredibly valuable due to its location.
Real estate investing also means learning about development. Some investors just start putting money into development projects without really thinking about what they’re doing. Again, this is gambling, not investing.
When you have an opportunity to get in on a real estate investment, make sure you study how well houses are selling in the area and who is buying them. This can help you determine if an investment is going to take off or if it’s going to crash soon after ground is broken on the project.
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