NEW member/first post! Investing strategies while living in CHINA

3 Replies

Greetings and Happy New Year, BP!

Just stumbled onto the podcast and forum and thought I'd throw out my first post as I'm beginning to read How to Invest in Real Estate: The Ultimate Beginner's Guide to Getting Started, as well as working through general knowledge and terminology in the industry.

I'm a 29-year old strength and conditioning coach working in China with the NBA for the past two years, focusing on youth and pro level basketball development. With coaching not being the most stable field, and with China's cost of living being low enough to really bolster my savings, I've been very interested in learning how I can create some reliable passive income through real estate. My initial worries (albeit before I've really read the wealth of books available yet) are with being able to stay in-tune with local US markets, and with eventually managing from overseas. 

I'm originally from the DC/Maryland area, but lived in Southern California for almost 10 years, before then moving to northern Colorado for two years. My stepmom used to be a real estate agent in Colorado, so I tend to be most comfortable with that area, but would be open to other areas if I'm confident in the market and the deals.

Obviously I'll be continuing to read and learn more as I go along, but any initial tips would be more than welcome. If not, I'm also happy to just say hi and begin meeting people in the BP community!

Cheers,

Kyle Moschkin

@Kyle Moschkin You may be part of a relatively small group here on BP, but I'm fairly sure I've seen a few other posts similar to yours (US citizen living in China or other places with lower cost of living). Maybe set up some key word alerts to help you track down those threads and see what others are doing. I'm almost positive I've seen another post from someone in China not too long ago - you could maybe even have your own tiny REI meet up lol

As for your options, you're going to need something pretty passive, since you obviously can't be on the ground to supervise renovations or manage tenants. You still have several options, depending on if you want to invest directly in individual properties or be a bit more removed:

  • Full-service turnkey investment:
    • Should be mostly passive after you do your due diligence and pick a provider, but don't skimp on your homework
    • You choose which props to purchase, but have no control over tenanting choices, some say in large maintenance expenses
    • Avg cost for solid B/B+ prop in Birmingham (and some other markets but this is the one I have data for, since it's my market) is about $100k per door; you'll pay market price for a tenant-ready, fully rehabbed property
  • Partnering with someone who does the on-the-ground stuff while you provide capital

    • Can be passive if your partner really knows their stuff, but more likely you'd be fairly involved with the choices made
    • More control since you call the shots with your partner
    • You can pick which markets and price points you're interested in
    • Potential for higher returns (ie buying distressed and then forcing equity through renovation) if your partner is experienced and can execute consistently
  • Investing in a syndicate

    • Many investors pool funds to invest in much bigger projects like commercial space or large MFRs, or in larger portfolios
    • Very passive, investors are not responsible for project vetting or management, but you have no control
    • May have higher bar for entry, some syndicates require large investments and you'll need to have liquid cash on hand
  • Buying shares in a REIT

    • Like an ETF but comprised of real estate investments
    • Very passive, but no control over which assets are held in the fund
    • Highly liquid, easy to buy and trade, lower bar for entry

Everything is a trade-off between passivity and control, time and money. You don't really have the option to be super hands-on (which can yield higher returns for folks that do the DIY thing really well, Option 2 is the only one that could allow you to take advantage of forced equity), so your options are somewhat limited. Your main decision will be between passivity and control.

If any of the few options I mentioned above are appealing (and there are others, TICs, DSTs, etc), I'd say set up some keyword alerts to help you learn more and connect with folks who are pursuing the same kind of investments. If you have any questions about turnkey or the Birmingham market, feel free to shoot me a PM any time.

Good luck!

Originally posted by @Kyle Moschkin :

Greetings and Happy New Year, BP!

Just stumbled onto the podcast and forum and thought I'd throw out my first post as I'm beginning to read How to Invest in Real Estate: The Ultimate Beginner's Guide to Getting Started, as well as working through general knowledge and terminology in the industry.

I'm a 29-year old strength and conditioning coach working in China with the NBA for the past two years, focusing on youth and pro level basketball development. With coaching not being the most stable field, and with China's cost of living being low enough to really bolster my savings, I've been very interested in learning how I can create some reliable passive income through real estate. My initial worries (albeit before I've really read the wealth of books available yet) are with being able to stay in-tune with local US markets, and with eventually managing from overseas. 

I'm originally from the DC/Maryland area, but lived in Southern California for almost 10 years, before then moving to northern Colorado for two years. My stepmom used to be a real estate agent in Colorado, so I tend to be most comfortable with that area, but would be open to other areas if I'm confident in the market and the deals.

Obviously I'll be continuing to read and learn more as I go along, but any initial tips would be more than welcome. If not, I'm also happy to just say hi and begin meeting people in the BP community!

Cheers,

Kyle Moschkin

 Welcome to the site Kyle. Being so far away 3rd party management is gonna be a must for you. You are definitely a prime candidate for a turnkey investment strategy.

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