Do you want to invest in real estate? The first thing you need to understand is that there’s a lot of work to be done – from browsing hundreds of new real estate listings in Montreal, to choosing an agent and eventually signing the contract. Owning a rental property is a tough business and there are challenges that await you in every step. Here are some helpful tips you can consider:
Search on your own.
Although you’re likely going to hire an agent, you should begin by searching for potential property investments on your own. In doing so, you can take an objective approach in evaluating all the neighborhoods and properties you’re interested in.
Choose a property that is close to where you live.
This is especially true if you plan on managing the property yourself. If you’re going to get a property management firm, then proximity to your home is not really a major requirement.
Select a neighborhood carefully.
Remember that the quality of your chosen neighborhood will have an influence on the type of tenants you will attract. It will also affect how often you will deal with vacancies.
For example, if you buy a rental property near a university, then your most likely tenants are students and you’re possibly going to have vacancies during summer.
Understand property taxes.
Property taxes can impact how much you’ll earn from your property, but high property taxes are not always a bad thing. If, for example, the property you’re eyeing is in a very good neighborhood, then it may be worth the risk.
Pick a property that is close to decent schools.
Most renters who are couples or families prefer living close to a school. Take note that the reputation of the school is just as important.
Compare crime rates.
Don’t pick a property in a neighborhood with a high crime rate. You may find a dirt-cheap property for sale but who wants to live close to a criminal activity hotspot? Checking with local authorities should give you an idea which areas to avoid.
Check if there is a growing employment opportunity in the area.
Naturally, buying a condo in downtown Montreal is going to be very expensive. So, if your budget is limited, then your best recourse would be to scout for areas close to the city with great potential for employment growth.
Amenities also matter.
Are there parks in the area? Is it easily accessible by public transportation? What about restaurants and theaters? Ask these questions during your hunt.
Look at other listings in the area.
Finally, check if there are a significantly high number of listings for the neighborhood. Although, at times, the reason for the surge in listings is that most developments are recent, it could also mean the neighborhood has “gone bad.”
Every city has good and bad neighborhoods, and every neighborhood has good and bad properties. Your job is to pick a good property in a good neighborhood, so that you can have a healthy start in real estate investing.