As some of you know, I was helping Canadian Real Estate Magazine research Hamilton, Ontario for this January’s article about investing in Hamilton. They also asked that I contrbute what I believe are the top five tips for the Hamilton Investor and here they are (note: I’ve made some edits to the original write up to reflect the current market):
- Buy positive cash flow investment properties near major transportation improvements, e.g.: Within 800 meters (a 10 minute walk) of a planned light rail transit or Go station, or a short driving distance to an on/off ramp for the Lincoln Alexander Parkway or the Red Hill Valley Parkway
- For the Rent to Own investment strategy, look for properties around 250k or less on the Hamilton Mountain. You can then rent them for around $1650/month.
- For student rentals, investigate the areas around Mohawk College for better cash flow opportunities than the areas around McMaster University. If you do invest in student rentals, check on them regularly. Students don’t like to shovel snow and mow lawns so consider hiring a landscaping company. It’s worth it to maintain the outside of your student rental so you don’t upset the neighbours and give them a reason to call the by-law officers.
- If you are investing in downtown Hamilton, West Hamilton: south of King St and West of James St is the more desirable area but difficult to cashflow. There are some great pockets that are in transition in central, East Hamilton, James North, West Harbour but be prepared for a tougher tenant profile. Look for renovated homes, especially updated electrical or be prepared to spend to fix it up to attract quality tenants.
- Focus on nice homes in nice neighbourhoods that will attract nice tenants. The biggest mistake novices make is that they buy cheap properties in rougher areas of town (they are cheap for a reason…). They run into tenant issues and wonder why they ever decided to invest. Get yourself a quality REALTOR who invests, understands investors, knows how to market rentals and will support you through the process so you don’t make the same novice mistakes.
And yes, tip #5 is a bit self serving but I’m stating a fact. Everyone on your team should be an investor – most importantly the one finding you investments properties. If you are looking for that someone to fill that spot on your team please feel free to contact me.
Till Next Time – “You can’t fly with the eagles if you hang with the turkies” -Andrew Palhetas
Real Estate Investment Adviser
p: 416-848-6293 x 211
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