You have probably seen television shows and advertisements, but what exactly is a real estate investor?
The better question is not what, but who is a real estate investor. Although an investor may represent a corporation, most of the ‘House Buying’ companies you might come across are small businesses owned by a local hard-working entrepreneur. Like any small business owner, they intend to provide for their family and positively contribute to the community in which they live.
What Exactly Do Investors Do?
As you have likely surmised, real estate investors work with the homeowner directly to purchase their property. This direct connection eliminates the need to place your house on the market, make repairs, or hire a real estate agent.
Although there are several different types of real estate investors, which we will discuss shortly, they all tend to offer the homeowner the same incentives: a fast cash offer, an easy escrow, an ‘As-Is’ purchase, and a closing timeline that suits the seller.
How Does It Work?
Every legitimate investor aims to create a win-win situation with the homeowner. For the investor, this most often translates into a reduced purchase price on the property. For the property owner, this could mean:
- Peace of mind of knowing their property is sold,
- Not having to make repairs,
- Being able to avoid caravans of traditional buyers walk through their house,
- Not having to worry about a bank or lender as the reason their property falls out of escrow,
- Not paying 5% to 6% of the house pricing to an agent,
- And, unlike with a traditional sale, the owner can move on the date most convenient for them (be it in a week or a year) without having to worry about the buyer backing out.
Most sellers agree that the slightly higher price they may have gotten for their house on the open market is more than compensated for by the ease and stress-free experience of selling to a professional investor. Not all investors have the same end goal for your property; however, it is worth knowing the differences.
The Two Primary Types of Investor You are Likely to Meet
Fix and Flip… aka Flippers
Thanks to popular home-improvement TV shows, the Flipper is probably the best-known type of investor. These investors, who are often contractors or work closely with one, look for houses that need some TLC or have untapped potential. By remodeling or renovating, Flippers can raise the property’s value and (hopefully) sell for a profit.
Despite what is so often portrayed on television, fixing and flipping a house, as a rule, is stressful rather than glamorous. Even with the most careful planning, construction costs always come in over budget. Issues arise with city permits and inspectors, and the renovation takes far longer than planned due to unforeseen complications. The housing market may dip. And every Flipper’s worst nightmare, the house sells for far less than projected. Meaning that the investor takes a financial loss of thousands to hundreds of thousands of dollars. For these reasons, flipping is a high-risk endeavor that is not for the faint of heart.
The Buy and Hold… aka Rental Owners
Buy and Hold investors, similar to Flippers, often purchase properties in need of renovation. But rather than fixing the property to sell it, these investors renovate the property to turn it into a rental. This is a long-term investment technique since each property requires years of steady rent before the investor makes their money. And, as with trying to fix and flip a home, there is never any guarantee of success.
As any homeowner knows, a house requires constant upkeep and maintenance. Even with proper care, things go wrong. The furnace breaks, the bathtub overflows and damages the flooring and subflooring, the dishwasher stops working, and so on. Such expenses are part of owning property but add in tenants who fail to pay rent and/or intentionally damage the property, and the investor can kiss their revenue goodbye. Nothing is risk-free, and the investor knows this going in.
Finding the Right Investor
95% of real estate investors are local hard-working professionals who will take care of you every step of the way. As with every industry, however, there are going to be a few bad apples. These bad apples typically represent 5% or less of the industry, but you still have to watch out for them. And with so many investors out there, it can be hard to know who to trust.
This is why SolidOffers works exclusively with a trusted network of real estate investors located throughout the country. These investors come with a proven track record and are thoroughly vetted to ensure they are experienced, professional, and the right fit for you. If selling your house through a local investor is an option you have considered, or would like to explore a little further, then reach out, or use the platform provided by SolidOffers, to find a trusted investor in your area.