A crucial strategy
When buying any piece of investment property, you need to have your exit strategy in place before you spend your first dollar on that investment. By exit strategy, I mean a marketing plan for unloading your investment – especially when times are bad in any given real estate marketplace, and you need to sell fast. As with all good property investing advice, it’s best to be prepared for the worst.
When flipping a property, the exit strategy is set well before you buy: you’re already thinking of the end user, the speculative purchaser you’ll be selling your property to…In this scenario, you’ll be creating a psychographic picture of your potential buyer, after you’ve made all renovations to the house. This not only helps you define your marketing plan ahead of time, but you’ll be able to figure out your target sales price, and work backwards into your renovations required to please this prospective buyer, as well as determine exactly what renovations are crucial to help you move the house once it’s ready to place on the market.
Psychographic profile of your buyer
Psychographic data includes demographic information – basics such as age, income level, gender, size of family, and even ethnicities. But it also includes psychological quirks and leanings of your prospective buyers. For example, the location you are considering purchasing in will determine a great deal about your potential buyer. Is the school system of paramount importance to them? Are they Democrats, Republicans or Independents? Are they liberal, moderate or conservative thinking? How religious are they? Do local religious institutions need to be extremely close to the investment property you’re acquiring?
Likewise, do they value privacy, and are looking for a more remote property to make them feel at peace. What types of psychological stimuli will appeal to your prospective buyer? Once you’ve begun answering these questions, create a page write-up of what your potential buyer will be like – both demographically and psychologically. Proper property investing advice will show that with this “road map” in place, you’ll be in a much better position to figure out what your target sales price should be. And you’ll then be able to work backwards to come up with your renovation budget.
If you’re looking to acquire a rental property to hold for the long term, cash flow and purchase price are the two most important features that will determine your overall profitability on the property. However, you must also consider your exit strategy in case things go wrong. (And invariably, with some properties, they will go wrong. After all, it only takes one truly horrendous tenant to blow your cash flow to bits…)
Devising the exit strategy
So what exit strategy can you put together before you acquire a long term investment property? When things go wrong, they usually go wrong fast. So, plan ahead for this eventuality. Always make sure you have the best tenants. And always keep checking what current market rents are by constantly researching the rents of your competition. And then make sure you align the rents on each of your units accordingly, as leases come due. Also, never neglect the upkeep and regular maintenance on your property. Ever. In this way, if you need to sell fast, you’ll at least have maximized your rent roll, and kept your property up.
This will help maximize the amount you can obtain for your property when it comes time to sell – whenever that may occur… Even if that time is years before you’d like it to be. In addition, always have a regular Realtor lined up – one you work with exclusively. In this way, if you need to market your property quickly, a brief call to your very own Realtor will produce immediate results – thus shortening the time it takes to get your property on the market.
Keeping the exit strategy current
Whichever exit strategy you create – whether it be for flipping a property, or for longer-held rental units, make sure you stay on top of it, and tweak it regularly. This is especially true for your long-term holdings. Simple property investing advice states that you’ve got to stay on top of market rents, maximizing them at all your units, and keeping up with regular maintenance on all your properties. In this way you’ll always be prepared to place the best product on the market quickly, should the need arise.
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