While it helps to have money when your getting started in real estate investing, it is not necessary. There are several creative ways to make money in real estate without using your money.
- Wholesale assignments -- This is where you find properties, usually distressed, to purchase and then sign a contract with the owner to purchase the property with a 30-day close. Then within the 30 days, you find a buyer to assign the contract to before the close.
- Managing Properties -- Manage properties for other people. Since other people own the property, no money is required. This allows you to make money while you learn how to manage properties. Note: In some states, you may have to be licensed to manage properties for other people.
- Owner Financing -- Find a property with an owner who is willing to finance the property to you.
- Lease Purchase (Rent to Own) -- Rent a property from an owner willing to sell to the property at a predetermined price at the end of the lease period. Usually involves paying a little above market rent of which a portion will be held by the owner for a down payment when purchased. If done formally a lawyer would draw up a lease and a purchase agreement, which is binding on both parties.
- Lease Option -- Rent a property from an owner for a period of time and purchase an option to buy the property at a predetermined price at the end of the lease. An option is only binding to the seller the buyer can walk away but loses money paid for the option.
- Partner -- Find someone to partner with you on a property. If you don’t have money, offer your labor. If you find a good property to buy at a good price and agree to do repairs and maybe manage the property, you should be able to easily find someone to partner with you.
- House Hacking -- Buy a small multifamily like a duplex and rent one unit while you live in the other unit. This allows you to make money to pay the mortgage and other expenses, while also learning how to manage a rental property.
- Hard Money Lenders -- Hard money lenders are people who fund investment properties (usually flips and renovations) with short-term high-interest loans. Unlike banks, they will finance a house in need of repairs, based on the after repair value. They can make it possible for you to buy a house, fix it, and sell it without using any of your own cash.