Boost Your Retirement Income with Real Estate Investing

PMulti-Family vs. Single-Family Rentals as Income

For those of you who are retired, you already know that cash flow is among the most important ingredients of a comfortable retirement. With a volatile stock market and drastically low CD rates, investing in real estate offers inflation-beating returns is crucial to have your money outlast your lifetime.


Solutions for Retirement Income

Unlike a dozen articles about the retirement saving crisis in the U.S., let us focus on real estate and how adding real estate to your retirement portfolio could help you achieve long-term financial freedom.

A majority of retirement plans do not offer real estate investments, but the self directed Solo 401k is an exception. It allows investing in a wide variety of assets not only limited to real estate but tax liens, tax deeds, precious metals, private lending, and pretty much any type of qualified investments.

What’s more, the process to add real estate to your Solo 401k is exactly the same as any other real estate transaction!


How can you add real estate to a self-directed Solo 401(k) retirement plan?

  • Establish a self-directed Solo 401k plan.
  • Roll over your existing 401k or IRA funds to the plan.
  • Find a property that satisfies your investment criteria.
  • Purchase the property with your Solo 401(k) retirement funds.
  • The retirement plan will hold the title of the property.
  • Pay closing costs and every other expense from the Solo 401k retirement plan only.
  • Make sure that any income generated by the property comes directly into the Solo 401k retirement fund.

If you’re just starting out as a real estate investor, you need to understand the correct property type for your retirement portfolio. Let’s get started with two of the most popular investment property types.


Choose a Rental Property Type for Investing

You probably have read a dozen stories about real estate investing. How someone made it big with single-family homes or commercial properties? How your colleague is crushing it with a vacation rental in Las Vegas? It could be really confusing for a beginner investor to choose a property type for investing.


Here is the truth. It is possible to achieve real estate success with any type of property. What is even bigger is that any strategy may work for you, and there is no hard and fast rule that you have to follow a particular strategy to be a successful realtor.


Classic Single-Family Home Vs Multifamily Units Comparison

This is the first question you will come across, so let’s take a sneak peek into each of these property types.


Single- Family Rentals (SFRs):

  • Easy maintenance: If you own one or two SFRs, managing them could be easier, as you can pretty much handle the repairs yourself. Your tenant would be responsible for taking care of the yard and utility bills, etc.
  • Higher rents & lower vacancies: It changes from one area to another, but depending upon your neighborhood, you can charge higher rents against multifamily units. Further, the vacancy rates are usually lower than the latter.
  • Large pool of potential customers: This is among the biggest advantages of owning SFRs. They are easier to sell and you can always find a buyer for your rental property.
  • Decent price appreciation: SFRs appreciate at a decent rate, and even with conservative figures, most of the markets will appreciate at 2%. Make sure to look at your local appreciation rate for a better understanding.
  • Risk of losing entire cash flow during vacancy: If your single-family rental happens to be vacant, you lose the entire cash flow along with the liability pay maintenance costs, insurance, mortgage. A single-family home, if vacant for more than a month, could derail your positive cash flow for several months.
  • Difficult to manage multiple SFRs: Managing one or two SFRs is comfortable, but how about managing 10 SFRs spread throughout the city. That takes the game to another level, where all you can do is to hire a property manager for that.
  • Economies of scale not applicable: Starting with the fact that you have to manage multiple roofs, SFRs don’t qualify for economies of scale. In case of multifamily, you might be able to get per unit discount but that doesn’t happen with SFRs.


Multifamily Units:

  • Higher cash flow/cheaper than SFRs: With multifamily units, your net cash flow is likely to be better, and considering that your price per door/unit is lower than average SFRs, your cash-on-cash return will stay higher.
  • Rents keep coming even if a single unit is vacant: In case of 4-unit multifamily, even if one is vacant, the other three will cash flow, minimizing your vacancy losses. Single-family units do not enjoy that luxury.
  • Limited competition in multifamily market: One of the things you will learn starting out is that multifamily units come with limited competition and the buyer pool is quite limited. You won’t be competing with two dozen other buyers to purchase a multifamily building.
  • Economies of scale favor you: You have to manage a single roof, one compound, one lawn, and one parking lot. You don’t have to run around the city taking care of repairs, and it is easy to save on costs when outsourcing maintenance.
  • Hard to find buyers: The same benefit goes against you while selling the property. You may have a hard time finding a buyer for your property and you can expect longer on-market periods.
  • Comparatively lower appreciation: In generally, multifamily units have somewhat lower appreciation when compared with SFRs. Do understand that every market is different and you may find a different trend in your area.
  • Hard to find financing for 4+ units: If you plan to purchase 4+ unit multifamily property, you need a better credit score and financial resources even to get started with investing.


In a nutshell, you have to consider your individual investing goals and create a mix of each of these property types. After all, the ultimate goal is to create a Solo 401(k) retirement fund that provides comfortably for your golden years and beyond. Call us California Private Money Lenders 707-315-1119 and we can answer some questions for you about real estate investing and private money loans or fill our our contact form or borrowers form and one of our trained private money lending team will be in touch promptly to answer your questions.

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Getting Started with Trust Deed Investing

What is Trust Deed Investing?

At the simplest level, trust deed investing is when an individual lends money to a borrower who is purchasing real estate. The source of this money can be from savings or retirement accounts. The broker finds the borrower who wants the loan, and the private party with the money provides the funding. The broker then arranges for the borrower to sign paperwork to show the world the agreement to borrow money and the terms. The two most important documents in a trust deed investment are the Deed of Trust and the Promissory Note.


What is a Deed of Trust or Trust Deed?

A deed of trust, once signed by the borrower, is recorded at the County Recorder’s office where the collateral is located. The recording of the trust deed “clouds” the title and lets the world know that the debt exists. When a title company researches a property, it is usually looking for trust deeds or evidence of indebtedness. The recorded trust deed is also the trust deed investor’s security; it allows him or her to be paid when the property is sold.


What is a Promissory Note?

The Promissory Note or promise to pay, is signed by the borrower and kept in a safe place by the trust deed investor until the loan is ready to be repaid. This document is not recorded. The Promissory Note shows the details of the loan including interest rate, payment schedule, and terms.


Who Are the Parties in a Trust Deed Document?

There are three parties mentioned in a deed of trust document: the beneficiary, the trustee, and the trustor.

The beneficiary is the lender. Most people are accustomed to seeing banks named as beneficiaries. However, in the private lending world, it’s usually an individual or a retirement fund named as the beneficiary.


The trustor is the borrower. The trustor may be a single person, a trust, an LLC, nonprofit, or a corporation. The borrower, by signing the trust deed and Promissory Note, is agreeing to the terms of repayment and gives permission for the loan to be recorded against the asset.

The trustee is given certain powers in a trust deed. Should the borrower default, the trustee is allowed to follow a simplified foreclosure process in the state of California called a trustee’s sale. This procedure is shorter and less expensive than a judicial foreclosure, a court process uncommon in California.

The trustee sale process allows the trustee to hold a sale of the property after the proper time has elapsed. When the trustee’s sale is conducted, the property can be purchased by what is known as a “third-party bidder,” or it can “revert” to the lender. In other words, at the conclusion of the trustee sale, the ownership of the property is transferred to either the lender or to the winning bidder.

In a trust deed investment, a broker acts as the middleman who brings together the private money source, the beneficiary and the investor borrowing the funds, the trustor. There are important legalities that need to be followed and it is wise to have a real estate broker involved in the process.

The broker arranges all signatures on the promissory note and the deed of trust and then arranges for title insurance and the recording of the deed of trust.

To find out more about Trust Deed Investing as an investor, it helps to speak with a private money lender that has a good understanding of the trust deed process and private money lending. Give us a call at 707-315-1119 or fill out our contact form and one of our our private money lender team members will give you a call promptly to answer your questions.

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