By: Neil Fjellestad & Chris De Marco
Rental ownership has a long history of satisfying the primary investment priorities of personal financial independence: safety of capital, inflation hedge and tax-favored income. Traditionally, if the detailed financial statements of the wealthy are available for review it becomes apparent that long-term income producing real estate assets directly or indirectly contribute substantially to their net worth.
Certainly there are exceptions that get the notoriety. There are the entrepreneurs that hit the jackpot with a new invention, the right innovation at the right time and/or the market control of a needed commodity. Then there are the speculators that successfully capture the benefits of leveraged capital, cheap labor or some windfall in the short-term that cannot be repeated with consistency.
However, forget the outliers and the top one-percent and concentrate on the basics of what has worked for the top twenty-percent. Locally understood and available rental properties purchased carefully one at a time consistently becomes the safest real asset to own. Note that a small share in a national real estate investment trust may seem like a “safe way to get the benefits of real estate ownership” but in fact, this is just another financial asset with the same characteristics and historically similar results as any other stock market investment.