investing in low-income neighborhoods

7 Tips For Investing In Low-Income Neighborhoods

Investing in low-income neighborhoods, has quite a few benefits, however, it should be noted that investing in these areas require a specific set of skills and tolerance.

Some benefits of investing in low-income areas are

  • Higher ROI
  • Lower investment
  • Easier to pay off mortgages
  • Easier to expand your rental business

Although there are countless benefits to investing in low-income areas, without the right knowledge, you can end up in a bad position.

Low-income doesn’t necessarily mean that the neighborhoods are not

Here are some tips that can help you as a low-income real estate investor!

Know the difference between a low-income neighborhood and a war zone.investing in low-income neighborhhods

You would be surprised how many informed people lump both of these into the same category.

War zones are areas with heavy drug trafficking, drug addicts, and gun violence. You don’t want to have to deal with calls from tenants that need you to come replace a window that was shot out during a neighborhood feud.

Don’t get me wrong you can make money in war zone areas, as well but it can sometimes come with more headache.

Low-income areas are just that. A lot of the residents, fall into the category of low-income. Just like any class, there are both good and bad people, the areas are generally safe.

Some advice I give investors is to drive through the neighborhood at night. Ask yourself…

  • What’s the vibe like?
  • Do you feel the need to lock your doors?
  • Would you walk down the street at night?
  • Do you hear gun shots?

This is the best way to tell what kind of area you are dealing with.



Buy properties in up and coming areas

It’s common for areas to change over time, neighborhoods can incline and decline, try to buy rental properties in areas that are showing signs of growth. Newly built grocery stores, and shopping centers are good signs of growth.

When you buy into up and coming neighborhoods, the value of your homes can rise considerably.

On the other hand, try to avoid areas that appear to be on the decline. If there is a steady increase in the amount of abandoned homes and businesses,  the area might be deteriorating which will cause your property to lose value, and eventually you to lose money.

Look for the diamond in the rough.

Low-income families are the same as everyone else. They want a home that’s visually appealing, and structurally sound.

Investing in low-income real estate does not mean buying outdated shacks, and becoming a slum lord.

Try to buy houses that are either visually appealing, or are distressed but are sold at a hefty discount. I prefer to buy distressed homes at discount prices because I hate going over someone else’s work. When I buy a distressed property, I have a clean slate to work with,  which enables me to have a beautifully updated house, for under market cost.

You can often find a better deal buying a distressed property, but make sure you know how to calculate renovation cost.

Find good tenants

*HINT! This is the most important part of ensuring success when investing in low-income neighborhoods.

You need to know how to find good tenants. As I mentioned earlier there are both good and bad people in every class. Dealing with low-income housing is no different. You need to pick a tenant with a proven track record of consistency.

Good tenants pay rent on time, maintain the property, and build your income.

Bad tenants give you headaches and cost you money. You only have one chance to pick so get it right the first time.

Avoid prospective tenants that:

  • Have an unverifiable rental history
  • Have been employed less than 2 years
  • Have credit scores under 600
  • Have ANY evictions
  • Have long criminal records

In other words, SCREEN, SCREEN, and then SCREEN the heck out anyone you may want to consider as a prospective tenant to live in your rental property. For a detailed guide on how to find a good tenant click here.

Rent your house section 8

What is section 8?
Section 8 is a government funded program, that covers either a portion or the full amount of rent, and in some cases, utilities, for low-income citizens that apply for the program.

I like section 8, as it’s evolved since its early days. My payment is wired to account monthly every month without delay.

There is a lot of contradicting information as to whether section 8 is good route for your investment. I rented my townhouse to a section 8 tenant and have had 0 problems. I attribute this to knowing how to find a good tenant. But my section 8 tenant is actually the easiest tenant to deal with.

Contrary to popular belief, section 8 people can be a pleasure. The program has a no nonsense policy for drugs and general nonsense. And because the section 8 program can be difficult to get in, most people that are on the program don’t want to lose their free or heavily discounted housing, so they tend generally try to maintain it.

Maintain your properties!

Investing in low-income neighborhoods doesn’t mean be a slumlord, so the same landlord commandments apply. Keep your properties maintained, If a tenant calls with a leak or anything that requires attention, take care of it immediately.

Not only will this prevent the problem from escalating, it will keep your tenants happy. A happy tenant is one that stays, and as an investor, you always want to aim for longevity.

The longer your tenant stays, the less you have to deal with turnovers and vacancies.

Hire a property manager

If handling the day to day operations of owning a low-income rental property, don’t seem don’t seem like your cup of tea, outsource it! Find a property manager that specializes in these type of area.

This will be helpful to you if you are not comfortable in these types of areas, it helps to have someone on call to take care of any problems that should arise.

Investing in low-income neighborhoods is a good way to build up passive rental income, and a great starting point for first-time investors, because of the low cost. As always, its very important that you do your due diligence before buying a rental property in ANY area.




Do you invest in low-income neighborhoods? What are some tips that help you maintain profitability?

Do you have horror stories from investing in low-income areas?

Let me know in the comments section below

Amazon is hiring

Amazon Seasonal Work From Home Program

In the spirit of side hustles, seasonal work, that you can do from home is rare to come by. For this reason I’m happy to share with you that Amazon is hiring on a seasonal basis.  Amazon is looking for people to help answer customer questions and assist with problem solving issues. Its a great way to stack up your cash for investments, pay off your credit card debt, or just save up for the holidays. Scheduling is very flexible.

Amazon requires that you live in on of the following states to be eligible for its work from home program:

  • Arizona
  • Colorado
  • Deleware
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Kansas
  • Kentucky
  • Michigan
  • Minnesota
  • North Carolina
  • North Dakota
  • Ohio
  • Oregon
  • Pennsylvania
  • South Carolina
  • Tennesee
  • Washington
  • West Virginia
  • Wisconsin
  • Virginia

amazon work from homeBenefits of  Working Seasonally from Home

  • While your friends are shoveling snow and scraping ice from their windshield you can start work in your pajamas with
    a hot cup of cocoa
  • You set your own schedule. Work as much or as little as you like. This means you can work anywhere between 1-30 hours per week. On average most associates work about 12 hours per week.
  • Amazon will pay you $10 an hour




 What Are Amazon Qualifications?

From Amazons officials job description:

The ideal seasonal work from home Amazonian is internet savvy and gas technical aptitude when it comes to online tools and research. You will think outside the box, solve problems, answers questions, and resolve concerns presented by our Amazon customers. Our customers contact us primarily by phone and we hope you can help us deliver customer obsessed results.

Other requirements for Amazons work at home position:

  • High School Diploma or GED.
  • Basic Typing
  • Ability to navigate the internet
  • 1 year in service environment
  • Ability to take any shift sunday through Saturday from 3am to 12 midnight PST. During the holiday season its possible they may ask you to work extra hours.
  • Technology Requirements

    • 64-bit Operating System
    • 10 mbps download and 5 mbps upload speed or faster from a reliable provider(no satellite or wireless internet)
    • Must be directly connected to router/modem via Ethernet cable
    • If you are using a laptop, it must be connected to an external monitor, keyboard, and mouse
    • Windows 8.1, Windows 10, or OSX 10.9, 10.10, 10.11
    • Operating System Auto-Update
    • Windows Defender (If using Windows 8.1 or Windows 10)

    The following programs must be uninstalled to meet the computer requirements:

    • All 3rd Party Anti-virus programs such as McAfee, Norton, AVG, Kaspersky, Avast, Comcast Constant Guard
    • Any other previous work from home software should also be uninstalled
    • Unused versions of Cisco AnyConnect Mobility Client

If you are interested in applying to Amazons work from home program click here. If you want to explore some other side hustles click here.



Have you ever worked for Amazon? Share your experiences below!

Investing in real estate young afford everything

Investing In Real Estate Young

If I could go back in time, to my senior year of high school, with the financial knowledge I have now….I would have retired years ago. It hurts my head to think how uninformed, and uneducated the school system leaves our youth after earning your diploma. All those years chasing grades, learning formulas, and a plethora of other things, yet no talk of rental properties, building passive income, or even the financial basics. Unfortunately, this scenario is all too common. I was in my mid-20s by the time I accidentally started building passive income.

 

The average person graduates high school and college. After college they have incurred student loan debt so they get an entry level job, they rent while dating, get married then search for the dream house. The couple applies for mortgages, they purchase the dream house at the top of their budget. And the cycle begins. This is the point when you stroll up to the starting line of the rat race.

 

Your living arrangements are your biggest expense, for this reason, I recommend beginning savings for your first house right out of high school. Once you establish stable employment or hone your hustling skills, rather than renting, the best way to start investing in real estate, is to find a local duplex or a cheap single family home. In order to find a good deal, you may have to sacrifice, and consider living in a low-income area. Low income doesn’t necessarily mean dangerous, but do your research. There are benefits to each strategy.

 

The benefit to buying a cheap home is that you can pay it off fast. In my area, I can find a 2 bedroom home in a low income, but safe area around 50k. If you concentrate your income on paying this off, you can own this house in under 3 years. By paying off your primary residence, you have eliminated what is generally everyone else’s biggest expense. You now only have to cover your property taxes and insurance. This means now it’s easy for you to save, what would be rent/payments for your next investment. Imagine how fast you could save up for rental if you didn’t have to pay rent.

 

The benefits of buying a duplex as first investment slightly differ in this strategy. The idea here is to find a well-priced duplex. My criteria is that the duplex cost less than if I was buying 2 separate houses. Using the example above, if the average 2 bedroom was 60k, I would be looking at duplexes with a comparable amount of bedrooms per unit for 110k or under. Once purchased, find a good tenant to rent out one side. Make sure the rent you charge is enough to cover the mortgage as well as your bills. At this point, you have your own place, and your living rent free. Continue to save money as if you did have rent and apply this to the mortgage. If you continue this in a few years, you’re going to have the duplex paid off free and clear. Now when you receive your rent payments, they are mostly profit. You can now save up for a down payment on your next place, then replace your old side of the duplex with a new tenant. The income from having 2 new renters will be profit and you will own real estate.

 

By investing in real estate young, by the time you’ve paid off the property In either strategy, you’ve already aggressively taken a large step towards passive income and getting a clear view of the finish line that is the rat race. Once you move out and have either completely paid off and rented, you are now able to buy more rentals, or at the very least you have an asset generating enough monthly passive income to cover your new mortgage payment. Without having to worry about rent\mortgage payments you can begin a fast paced savings plan, that will allow you to grow your portfolio and subsequently, your rental income . The younger you are when you star investing in real estate, the sooner you can start building up your rental portfolio.



why your house is a liability

Your house is NOT an asset

Chances are you’ve heard someone at some point utter the phrase “your house is your biggest asset”. Seems legit, after all home ownership is the American Dream. But the reality is, your house is a liability, perhaps your biggest, depending on other financial  factors. When you purchase a house to live in you begin to incur inevitable expenses.

What are assets and liabilities

Before we can understand why your house is a liability, we must first learn what both assets and liabilities are. In simple terms(because simple is always better), an asset is something you buy that generates income. Things like rental properties, businesses, royalties, or affiliate  The latter, liabilities are the opposite, things like cars, clothing, electronics, boats and generally anything that cost money to maintain and/or generates expenses. These terms, and the ability to identify such are fundamental on your journey to financial freedom.

Why your house is a liability

Now that we know these terms let’s think about home ownership in all its American glory. You find the house of your dreams. You make an offer, get financing, and everything runs smoothly. Let’s look at the expenses that you are now responsible for. There the mortgage, insurance, taxes, lawn care, and repairs. All of these expenses are taking chunks of your income. In the unfortunate event you lose your job, these things will likely become unsustainable, and the home may likely end up in foreclosure.

How a house can become an asset

On the other end of the spectrum, real estate used as an asset, is one of the best ways to generate passive income . Let’s take the same example from above, however, instead of living in this house, we make it a rental property. There will still be expenses involved such as the mortgage and insurance, but by renting this out for an amount greater than the expenses, a profit margin is created. Now the rent – mortgage, insurance, and taxes = profit. That same house, that was once a liability, is now generating income rather than extracting it. Not only are you now generating a passive income, but you are also paying off the home over time. You can always convert your house to an asset from a liability by moving out and turning it into a rental, the way I did when I accidentally started building passive income. The most important thing to remember is that you always want to own more assets then liabilitie