Anyone begin their real estate journey in their late 40s?

190 Replies

Originally posted by @Jai Reddy :

@Sue K.

I wish I could meet you and just talk. Your views about people and children and legacy align with what I’ve observed since I was a child. In another post somewhere, you said ‘people change because situations around them change’. Likewise, performing the ‘due diligence’ around one’s estate so kids and relatives don’t quarrel has been my goal as well after seeing my parents’ siblings others grow distant from each other because of handed down properties without even all the paperwork in one place.

 Because of my age and experience now, I think it's safer to expect that everything will change and to not have any expectations - other than to expect that everything will change LOL and not in a good way.  It's just safer to start out expecting that when you die, all heirs will not be getting along and to write your will and trust accordingly.  If they all happen to be getting along, then they will all happily enjoy what you've left them.  But, if what you leave them relies on them getting along in any way, shape or form, odds really are that that will end up badly.

And I don't think you need to think of that as sad or bad.  Just think of it in terms of people change.  People's needs and relationships change.  And, if you don't put them into a position where they might have to agree - which means they might disagree - you'll actually be sparing them a lot of stress.

I think it's actually much kinder to do things this way.  And, if you care - of course, if you're dead, it's their problem, right? - then it's best to also create a video that shows you are sane when you made the video, that it makes sense that you made the choices you did, etc.  I know someone whose will was contested and they lost and were told that if the decedent had made a video explaining their choices, it would have made all the difference.  Just having it in writing wasn't enough.

It's just awful when heirs fight.  So much of the estate is lost by legal fees and court fees - even if it's just because there isn't a will and everyone is getting along.  Then, if everyone starts fighting, there are even more legal fees (meaning lawyers) and court fees.  Everyone can end up with nothing or so much less than they could have.  But, does that cause everyone to get along?  Unfortunately, not usually.

Originally posted by @Patrick Froehlich :

I am would like to start investing in real estate but am in my late 40s. Anyone investors on BiggerPockets start that late in life? Any suggestions? Thanks in advance.


I bought my first investment property during the great financial crisis in 2008 because it was like buying 20 dollar bills for 10 bucks. I was 53 years old. I now have 90 single family homes with no leverage. I'm now 65 and supposed to be retired but I have purchased 7 more homes so far this year.

I have invested in stocks, bonds, gold, silver and cd's. In my opinion nothing beats real estate. Nothing, and it's never too late to start. 

Hello Patrick, yes and I started in my 50's!! Wow, the greatest question, suggestions. Educate, educate and more education on what you want to accomplish. My biggest hurdle was my mindset, I would definitely start their. 

Some great books that will help are: No brainer, "Rich Dad Poor Dad" changed my life and how I think about money now,"The Miracle Morning", having a routine in the morning was the best thing for me. 

In addition to that, become familiar with "The Infinite Banking Concept" and the book "Becoming your own banker" by R. Nelson Nash.  Of course all the BiggerPocket's books and tools that they offer. 

Keep me posted on your adventures!!

P.S. Age has nothing to do with Wealth!!

Kent Kiess

Yes in fact I am just getting started at 44. I live and plan to invest in San Antonio, although I am learning about other markets as well.  I am really excited to start this new chapter and it’s great to be studying alongside my kids. 

@Patrick Froehlich

I got in at 42. It’s about taking action. The sooner the better but any age is better than never. I looked at real estate for many years but didn’t take the proper action until I was in my 40s. I’m not crushing it yet but I know I’m heading in the right direction.

Jump in! Enjoy the adventure!!! Even if don’t make millions you’ll be better than if you never tried.

@Patrick Froehlich I started in my 50’s.

I’m curious why you posted the question. It’d be helpful if you elaborated on your concerns.

As some here said, if one's time horizon is short then REI isn't a good choice due to low liquidity, granularity, and transaction cost / effort. The rule of thumb I've heard is 5 years and I assume your investment horizon is longer.

After that, the numbers work great versus alternative investment choices. Since my goal was financial security in retirement via passive income, my target was to purchase properties with a 4% cap rate. I picked this to match the 4% rule for retirement, but in this case I never have to draw down the capital which removes the risk of running out of money, plus the capital appreciates, plus cash flow is indexed to inflation. I've arrived at a balanced portfolio of stocks, bonds, and REI which combined provide me with a good combination of growth and stability.

The one difference I see in when you start is that generally one needs to consider risk management for a lessening time horizon. That's true of all investing but liquidity, granularity, and volatility require more strategy to mitigate in REI.

@Patrick Froehlich

My wife and I talked about RE investing and over analyzed it for ten years. We bought our first rental four years ago and our first flip 18 months ago. I am 51 and we have done three flips in that 18 months. We did not quit our day jobs. My wife was a substitute teacher and I am a lumber wholesaler. She has since stopped working at the school (just before COVID-19), but I still sell lumber. We do most of the work on our properties, our sons (12 & 14) also work with us. We spend more time together than before and consider ourselves fortunate to be able to. We are also fortunate that I can continue to sell lumber while we work on the properties.

My advise is to make the move, you will not regret it, but you might regret not doing it should sooner!!

Plenty of folks here on BP that would be most happy to offer tips, present company included!!!

Happy 4th of July!!!!

Great post! Wife and I are in our 40's and have some capital we are looking to deploy, we both have worked stressful jobs and looking to do something for ourselves now. Corporate America is miserable these days and i'd much rather be out working for myself. 

So glad to see this question, for all of us that have a bad habit of  watching the retirement clock :)  My wife and I jumped in when I was 46 and like many of course have wondered 'why didn't I do this sooner?'   

But it has really helped us to shift the mindset from that depressing hindsight view of 'wow, where would we be if we had only started this 20 years ago?'    to the forward thinking vision of 'Wow!, where will we be in 20 years, if we keep this train moving?'   We currently have single family homes in our portfolio and are looking forward to stepping into multifamily this year as well as adding new construction units to our existing properties. 

In a short time we  have learned much, especially here on BP, met so many new and wonderful people from mortgage brokers, private lenders, gracious sellers offering to carry notes and a variety of fabulous tenants.  It is a journey we would recommend to anyone in their 40s. 

@Patrick Froehlich

I started at age 61 with a friend. Buy and hold. I just turned 64. We have 32 SFR's and 5 under contract. We are each drawing 5000/m. The advantage we had being older was more money to start. Because of our ages I am trying to get to 10,000 a month as quick as I can then 15,000 to sublime to retirement income. Once you build a network of agents and bankers it's easy. Now my kids want into the game and that brings me great pleasure. I start real estate school in 2 weeks. Not looking to sell houses but network brokers for deals. We have property management in place, I work at my pace play golf 3 days a week and poker 2. my goal is to leave each of my 4 children 25 houses at my death.

Not to say anything but I survived serious cancer in 2012 a major car accident in 2017 where I spent 60 days in the hospital and 90’days in rehab then a triple bypass in 2018. I feel great and enjoy every day.

Plenty of people seem to start in their 40s, probably for a few reasons.  Many start to have extra income then due to job growth.  They also get to where they are 1/2 way to retirement and realize they need to build some wealth.  These days to perhaps people see the lifetime employment with one legacy company may not be a reality, so decide they need a backup plan.

I don't know how old they were when they started, but I regularly meet with some gentlemen who are 70 and up that are fairly active investors.   There are two guys I just found out about, one in their 80s and one was in their 90s that I had wanted to meet up with this year.   I just had some projects I wanted to finish first.  Now just learned the one in his 90s passed away.   It shocked me this guy was doing some long distance investing and very active.