First investment advice

1 Reply

Thanks for taking the time to read my post, any feedback is appreciated!

Although I'm only 21, I'm blessed to say I have a very, very good job. I make more per hour than my age and have all the benefits in the world, so money isn't an issue thankfully. I'm currently in a lease that has about 7 months left. In this time, I plan on paying off all my debts, saving up some safety money, possibly starting an LLC, and obtaining my real estate license (currently 12 hours into my 75 hour course).

I live in a college town that's perfect for rentals, so I'm thinking on my first purchase, I'll buy a home to rent out to college students (with parent's cosigning of course). The only reason I'm worried about this is because college students seem like they could be a hassle realistically. I'm on a huge partying campus, renting out a newly bought home to 3-4 18 year olds and hoping for the best seems kind of skeptical, especially once move out time comes. I could just see all the problems with them not wanting to pay for the damages, having lawyers involved, etc.

On the other hand, my dad is very big in construction. Done it all, built his own house he lives in now and also told me he could help with my first one. He built his for about $153,000 with the land included. Specs will say the house they have now is worth around $190,000. So my other option is to possibly spec build a home with my dad and put on the market after I get my license. If it happens to not sell, I could afford the monthly payments, I might even move in myself.

My question is, if I were to find the perfect rental home on this college campus, should I purchase that and rent it out or do you think it would be smarter for me to do something a little out of town with my dad and put it up at market value? I know the headaches with each of these decisions, I'm just trying to decide which one will be a better investment.

Sorry to ramble, again, any advice means a lot!

You really are in a great position, probably the best thing you have going for you is that you have a great mindset for your age. 

You need to figure out what your long term strategy is and work in that direction. Do you want to be a landlord. Do you want to be a developer? Something else? 

Having said that, I know what I would do based on your info provided. If you build a new house with your dad you'll have 3 advantages; you can build it to your exact specifications, you'll have minimal maintenance issues and, most importantly, you'll equity right out of the gate. Even in a college town there are more tenants than 18 year old party animals, University employees, grad students, married students and folks who's jobs have nothing to do with the college. They type of folks who would prefer to have a nicer place in a quieter neighborhood.  I would try to get more info on the market for rentals further away from campus. 

If you're ok with having roommates, you could even house hack, live there and rent out 2 or 3 rooms for a while, letting others pay your mortgage while putting your money towards your next investment.