In the real estate world, there always seems to be some new “whiz kid” who started investing at 18 years old and retired with a multi-million dollar portfolio before graduating from college. With that kind of emphasis on the correlation between youth and success, it can be easy to feel as though your ship has sailed and the opportunities to get into the investment game dry up somewhere in your twenties.
But guess what? Whether you’re 25 or 85, it’s NEVER too late to get started investing in real estate. In fact, if you’re thinking about getting involved in real estate, there’s no better time than the present. You’ll never be younger than you are today, and the only reason your age is holding you back from investing is that you’re allowing it to.
Reasons You Might Think It’s Too Late (And Why You’re Wrong)
People have a myriad of reasons for thinking that it’s too late for them to get into real estate investment. Here are some of the more popular reasons people stay away from getting into the real estate game later on in life (and why they’re completely untrue):
Too Many Investors In The Game
People tend to be scared of competition, and first-time investors (especially investors a little higher in years) feel that the market is already too saturated for them to have an impact.
However, that isn’t actually the case. Are there a lot of real estate investors out there? Absolutely. But there are no real estate investors out there like YOU. Every investor brings their own unique skill set and talents to the table, and that’s what can help you stand out from a sea of investors. Yes, many people have invested before, but no one’s ever done it YOUR way.
Not Enough Time to Make Money
A lot of potential investors shy away from getting started because they think that since they don’t have 50 years to wait for their investments to appreciate in value, there’s no money to be made in real estate investment.
However, that idea couldn't be further from the truth. There’s real money to be made in investing, even if you don’t have years to wait for a return on your investment. Will your strategy be different from someone starting to invest at 25? Absolutely. But that doesn’t mean you can’t make just as much – or more – from real estate investment as someone who got started at a younger age. It’s all about making smart investments that align with your financial goals.
The Economy Isn't Right
There’s no denying that we’ve faced a challenging economy in recent years here in the US. Investors, young AND old, have used the struggling economy as an excuse to sit on the sidelines and hold off on getting their feet wet with real estate investment. They think they need to wait for the perfect conditions, and older investors especially feel like they don’t have the time to wait for an economic turnaround.
However, challenging financial times can actually be the BEST time to get involved with real estate investment. Home prices are lower, and you’ll get a quicker return on investment when the economy bounces back (as it inevitably will).
How Your Age Can Work FOR You, Not Against You
Instead of considering your age something that’s holding you back, look at it as an advantage. Here are some clear benefits to getting involved in real estate later in life that your younger counterparts couldn’t replicate if they tried:
People Will Take You More Seriously
There’s a certain level of respect that comes with age, which will work to your advantage when you’re speaking with lenders, contractors, property managers, and other investors. Younger real estate investors are fighting an uphill battle because potential partners have a hard time viewing them as a credible investor. However, older investors have an easier time getting partners to view them as peers and reliable people to do business with.
You Likely Have More Assets and Better Credit
The older you are, the more time you’ve had to get your finances in line. Your savings account, investment portfolio, and other assets are likely far more impressive than those of someone fresh out of college.
And even if your assets aren’t where you’d like them to be, you’ve had years to build up your credit, which means that, as long as you’ve taken care of your bills over the years, it will likely be easier for you to get financing than for someone with a shorter credit history.
You Have Life Experience
You have something incredibly valuable that a young investor doesn’t have – experience. You gain immeasurable value through life experience, making (and learning from) mistakes and working your way through the various trials and tribulations that life throws your way. That kind of experience shapes who you are and how you make decisions, and it can be a huge asset to you as you decide which properties to invest in, how to manage your portfolio, and what the next best move is for your investment goals.
Tips for Getting Started in Real Estate Investing
Now that you know that it’s 100% not too late to become a real estate investor, here are some tips to get started on the path to investing:
Before you buy your first property, it’s essential that you educate yourself. Read everything you can about investing, financing, and your local housing market.
Find a Mentor
One of the most invaluable resources for a new investor, whatever their age, is to have a mentor to help guide them as they start making investments.
Reach out to established investors in your area and ask them out for coffee. Go to local networking events to meet other investors. Start building relationships with people that might be able to help you along your investment path.
Buy a Property
There’s only so much research and talking you can do before the time comes to take action. Educate yourself, talk to other investors, and when an opportunity presents itself that aligns with your ultimate financial goals, take the leap. The only way to get started in real estate investment is to actually start investing.
Whether you’re 25, 45, or 65 years old, if you’re thinking about getting involved in real estate investment, there’s no better day than today.