As a 20+ year veteran in the real estate lending industry, I’ve noticed a glaring difference in the number of female investors versus male investors. It’s not for lack of desire or lack of knowledge that women remain on the sidelines, but rather it’s a confidence issue. Women are more afraid of losing money, more afraid of making bad investment decisions and simply not knowing how to get started.
Networking Groups for Women Investing in Real Estate
The best way to get started is to join networking groups such as a local Real Estate Investing Association (REIA) or a Meetup.com group dedicated to real estate investing.
REIA is more formal in structure, but it offers a wealth of information and a national platform of resources such as educational offerings and details about legislation that could impact real estate investors. Furthermore, each local chapter has a diversified membership with brokers, lenders, contractors, and most importantly, other investors, who can provide invaluable insight that can help you invest smartly.
Meetup.com groups are typically small (5-20 members) and meet irregularly. It may take some additional time to find the right fit for your ultimate investing strategy, but the smaller size may prove easier to navigate. Whichever route you choose, starting your networking base is essential to long-term success in the industry.
Finding Capital to Begin Investing in Real Estate
While joining a networking group and/or a real estate investment group is a great place to start, finding capital to purchase property can stymie even the most diligent investor. Since the credit crunch, many women who are interested in becoming real estate investors hesitate because they are nervous about money – specifically, not having enough money to be able to invest in real estate. Several years ago, investors used to be able to acquire properties very easily with little or no money down. Equity requirements have since changed, but so have the ways that equity can be obtained.
Sources such as crowdfunding have emerged to help raise equity, but it should be noted that crowdfunding is highly regulated and requires using licensed broker-dealers or a funding portal registered by the SEC. Crowdfunding allows both investors and entrepreneurs to interact in ways that foster the business relationship very differently than in the past. Because crowdfunding is gender anonymous, it requires social media savvy, non-traditional marketing strategies and superior communication skills. The ability to connect investors to entrepreneurs, across a dynamic platform using social media and marketing strategies, has all the makings of a second glass ceiling broken.
Don’t be afraid to jump in and start learning whether real estate investing is the right industry for you. Just be sure to have a solid plan in place, access to industry education and a stacked network of professionals to help guide you to success.
Corevest provides real estate business line of credit loans to investors with stabilized single family home rental portfolios, as well as lines of credit for acquisitions, fix and flip portfolio strategies and to refinance existing properties.