As a Denver area Realtor, my answer for most problems is to buy a house. As an attorney friend of mine once told me, “When all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.”
More and more people are thinking about buying investment property. The initial desire always seems to be fix and flips. But frankly, if you can’t afford to go after homes well above $200,000, it’s tough to make much money on fix and flips. The cheaper properties are in short supply and, usually, leave little margins on the flip. More expensive properties bring greater reward, but with greater risk and the need for a bigger initial investment.
An alternative to getting into investment properties, particularly at the lower end of the spectrum, is either a fix and hold, or to purchase a home that doesn’t need work but that can be a solid rental. Areas around colleges, hospitals, downtown, the airport, and large business centers can be great areas for rental property. Experienced investors will tell you that accumulating property is a proven and generally reliable to amass wealth. Over the long haul, investment property will usually appreciate, as well as bring in a monthly positive cash flow.
One way to get into purchasing investment property is with a self-directed IRA. With that, you can roll over retirement funds into a managed account that can be used to buy real estate. It’s a tricky way to access money to buy property. It’s not that complicated to do and several area banks can handle managing the account.
But, like with most things, you need to figure out if this is a good fit for you. Being a landlord comes with lots of challenges. Of course, if you don’t mind giving up some profit, you can always turn your rentals over to a property manager. That way, they can answer the phone in the middle of the night when the pipe breaks.
You might want to check out this article about being a landlord.