Overcoming fear - first investment!

5 Replies

Looking for some guidance (and a vote of confidence)...I currently have a VA loan on a 3/2 that appraises for 165K with a loan of 149K (mortgage just under 1100 including P&I, taxes, and insurance). Current rental rates per Rentometer and Zillow show comps of 1300-1400/month. I contacted a VA mortgage company and got a pre-approval for a second tier entitlement, which allows me to utilize the remainder of my 417K entitlement with no money down. I will have to do some work to my current house to make it rentable; however, I estimate these costs to be around 5K. My fear lies in taking on two mortgages. Granted, I hope to rent out the my 3/2; however, in the event that it sits vacant, how do I overcome the fear of taking on two mortgages? Is this sink or swim feeling normal for newbie investors? BTW the new property is a double lot that has a home priced at a single lot rate. Initially, the property was listed in May16' at 329K and its now down to 280K. Looking to offer 250K and negotiate to no more than 264K. Once the other lot is sold, it should pocket us 90K. To me, this makes great sense; but, I'm still nervous about taking that first step.

That feeling is normal.  I feel added 'pressure' after every purchase.  A few months go by and the mortgages get paid and the feeling goes away.  If you are investing in single family homes and you cant afford both mortgages on your income then I would HIGHLY suggest that you have a 6 to 12 month cash buffer for holding costs.  Possibly more.  If a tenant goes in and destroys the place and walks away at this time of the year and you need to pay to fix the place and it will likely stay vacant through the winter, you need to be ready for that.

Hi @Tyler Relph . The fear is perfectly normal. The counter to that fear is having a financial buffer. Make sure you can withstand the cost if it sits vacant for a month or two (or more since it's coming on winter). Just because the VA loan requires $0 down doesn't mean your reserves can be there ;)

Best of luck. The VA loans are amazing and a great way to get started!

@Tyler Relph Welcome to the club! Like anything you've never done before, this is a huge endeavor and it's okay to have those feelings, it's just a form of excitement. Hopefully you did your calculations well, and like the others said, have enough extra money in reserves. It's going to be a great learning experience and hopefully more! 

The fear is normal and justifiable. You are right to be concerned as investing is always high risk. If you want to invest in real estate you must have the mind set going in that worse case scenario you are prepared to lose it all.

Once you accept that fact, and can still move forward, the fear is easy to overcome. If you can not reach that mind set you should not invest.

I appreciate everyone's guidance here. It turns out the extra lot has an easement on it preventing anyone from building or putting fences up. Turns out it was not as good of a deal as I thought. But I'm taking steps! Thanks again!

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