Commercial Real Estate Investing – Are Apartment Complexes a Safe Bet?

In today’s market, nothing is to be considered a safe bet. Over the last few years the safe bet in residential real estate has turned into a nightmare for many individuals. Well, as we look ahead we will find the same now holds true for many of the commercial investors. Many properties purchased in the last few years will experience balloon payments coming due. The expectation to just refinance the property with few hassles has gone by the wayside.

The problems listed above can happen with any type of commercial property, but some may be more problematic than others. When you consider what type of commercial property to invest in considering the economic climate today, you might find yourself drawn to apartment complexes.

Apartment complexes can be a safer investment today, for example, than a shopping center with no national tenants. The smaller, or mom and pop, businesses are usually the first ones to feel the impact of economic contraction. With that said, let us be realistic. Everyone still needs a place to live. Apartments are not going anywhere! The real question is can you purchase an apartment complex today and have positive cash flow.

Depending on how much money you are willing to put down, you can always make a property cash flow positively. The question to ask yourself is do you really want to put out much cash on an investment that has already failed in eyes of the previous owner. Most investors want to put as little money down as possible and then get commercial mortgage financing.

In the commercial real estate market today, apartment buildings is an area where I am willing to invest and take a risk. Today it is easier to pick up property at distressed level pricing. When considering your offer price today, and in order to make the acquisition as safe as possible, remember to consider that the rents you can charge the tenant are starting to go down. With this said consider this in your offer as well as lowering your vacancy rates as quickly as possible upon purchase.