In the not so distant past, real estate was a man’s world. Men handled the buying and selling of property, acted as the lenders, agents, contractors, and took on virtually every other role in the process, while women took a backseat. Today, women are at the helm just as much, if not more. The female investors I know and work with are smart, determined, and highly successful at what they’re doing. Still, it’s not always easy working in an industry that was male-dominated for so many years. I talked with some of the women investors I know, and they have some advice for other women who are interested in running their own real estate investment business.
Surround yourself with the right people.
Success in this industry is largely tied to who you know. As a new investor, and especially as a woman investor, it’s important to connect with people you trust and who can offer solid advice when you need it. Start by attending seminars or other networking events where you can meet other investors, real estate agents, and others in the industry, and swap contact info with the people you meet. The goal is to build a team of reliable contacts from different backgrounds and who can help you in all facets of investing.
Find some great female role models.
While you’re networking, focus specifically on finding a woman role model or two. Having someone to look up to and be inspired by will help keep you motivated and on track. Plus, just hearing another woman’s perspective on something is exactly what you need sometimes, or so I’ve been told. If you don’t meet in anyone in person who fits the bill, don’t sweat it. There are lots of female role models in the industry who have websites, blogs, or podcasts that you can follow – perfect for learning more about your chosen profession and deriving a bit of encouragement when you need it!
Stay safe when looking at or showing properties.
Safety first, ladies. I hate that I even have to include this, but after talking with my women investor pals, it is something that should be mentioned. When you’re out looking at new potential investments, or even showing a home that you’re trying to sell, make sure you are being safe about it. For example, I would not recommend going by yourself to an abandoned home in a shady area. Not that I doubt you could take care of yourself, but because it’s just plain common sense safety. It also doesn’t hurt to make sure someone knows where/when you’ll be out when you’re scouting new properties or meeting new contacts.
Turnkey investing offers an option that eliminates a lot of the legwork that comes with investing, so it’s great for beginners – men or women. Using this strategy, all you need to do is connect with a reputable turnkey provider who can then walk you through the entire investment process. They should have a large inventory of rehabbed, tenanted, cashflowing properties, as well as options for property management. Narrow down the options to properties you think would be a good fit, then run the numbers to make sure it’s a smart choice. Once you buy the property, you’ll enjoy immediate income and the convenience and comfort of knowing that it’s being taken care of by a property manager.
In my experience, women make some of the best investors. They’re smart, savvy, and, in general, are less inclined to make rash decisions. But when you’re a brand new player in this game, whether you’re a man or a woman, it can be overwhelming and even intimidating at times. As a woman investor, there will also likely be times where you feel like you’re in a “good ol’ boys” situation (again, this is what I’ve heard), which can make things even tougher when you’re just starting out. Take the advice above, and don’t ever forget to always be yourself and listen to your intuition. Sounds cliche, but it’s so true in this business.