Whether you’re just getting started in real estate investment or you’ve been at it a while, you’ve definitely noticed there are plenty of websites out there aimed at real estate investors. Which are the best websites for real estate: the ones that are really worth your time? Consider these six of our favorites.
1. Real Estate Tools
Real Estate Tools is a great place to source apps that actually take a lot of the guesswork out of being a real estate investor, especially if you’re trying to manage multiple properties or properties out of state. Visit the site to find out what the apps can do, sign up for free trials, and take them for a test drive. Most have a free version with useful standard features if you don’t have a lot of properties to take care of.
The Property Fixer app, for instance, is a powerful way for flippers to analyze properties and do their due diligence quickly. It crunches all the numbers for you and allows you to adjust your holding period to see how different times frames will affect profit. Once you’ve chosen your properties, the Construction Cost Estimator lets you create on-site estimates for your projects and generate clear, comprehensive, and professional PDF reports.
Discover the secrets of creating long-term wealth with investment property at JasonHartman.com. Jason Hartman, owner of Platinum Properties Investor Network Inc., helps people achieve the American Dream of financial freedom through the purchase of income property, nationwide. Jason offers a comprehensive system providing real estate investors with education, research, resources, and the technology to deal with all areas of their income property investment needs.
3. Trulia Neighborhoods
Google Earth and Google Street view are great, but sometimes you just want a website that aggregates information about a neighborhood. While Trulia’s main real estate page does have listings, it’s not really the best site for choosing your properties or comparing investments. It’s plagued by outdated and inaccurate listings, and when you’re cutting out the middle man real estate agent, it’s really hard to know what you’re getting into.
Where Trulia can help the serious real estate investor is through Trulia Neighborhoods. Trulia allows you to get a feel for places that might be hundreds of miles away with more than just pie charts of demographics and outdated lists of the best schools. Instead, you get original photos from people who really live there, resident reviews, and insights from the people walking the streets every day. There are thoughts on local culture, information on which are the main streets and which the side streets, and accurate information about nightlife, fitness, grocery access, and other things that will be important to your tenants.
4. This Old House
If you’re a flipper who loves to do all the work yourself, you’ll love This Old House. The site offers insights and even step-by-step instructions on how to do everything from gutters to gardening, fireplace to flooring, landscaping to laundry rooms.
Just choose a category, like “electrical,” and you’ll get an overview of everything you’ll need to take into account, read-through instructions on installation, how-to and DIY tips, and even a section on “inspiration” that can give you ideas for how to get things done better, faster, or cheaper without compromising on quality. Even if you’re not planning on doing all the work yourself, you can get a good idea of what goes into any remodeling project, if you’re interested.
5. Property Tracker
Property Tracker is a web-based tool that gives you incredible power to evaluate potential investment properties and then keep track of them all. The evaluator takes the guesswork out of things by giving you apples-to-apples comparisons of multiple properties. You can see at a glance the first-year performance projections with photos, comparisons of costs and rent, estimates of income and expenses, and projected cash flow, tax savings, and grow equity income.
If you’ve already got some properties, the tracker tool is the perfect way to make sure nothing falls through the cracks. With monthly updates, you’ll know the right time to make key decisions, like when to sell or remove your PMI. The tracker generates detailed reports so you can keep track of leases, vacancies, income, and expenses as well as keep tabs on appreciation trends and depreciation for taxes.
6. Afford Anything
If you’re just getting started with realizing your dream of financial independence, consider Afford Anything. Started by a woman who got bored with her joyless 9-5 job and moved into real estate, it’s an encouraging place to visit. Perhaps the biggest draw of the website is in the way it encourages you to keep on track to reach your goals. In fact, at times, it’s not even focused on real estate as much as on how to improve your life in general by not sitting out on your dreams.
While her approach towards saving and budgeting may not be for everyone, it will definitely resonate with some. When things get to be a bit too discouraging, or when it seems impossible that you’ll ever have what you need to get started in real estate, let Afford Anything give you a boost and get you back on track.
Never Stop Learning
These are just six of the best websites for real estate, and whatever your level of experience, using the power of the information age to educate yourself and find the tools you need to succeed can make the difference between failure and success. Whatever sites you choose, make sure you have a solid business plan, never neglect your due diligence, and keep moving towards your goal.
Photo by Joseph Gruenthal on Unsplash