If you have a lot of patience and a little money, one of the best ways to accumulate wealth is to buy real estate as an investment. I say lots of patience because you’ll have to spend some time finding and renovating small apartments, and you’ll have to deal with tenants, which is probably never fun.

I think it’s a great idea. You could certainly do this in Boston – think buying a very small studio in the Back Bay, or a one or two bedroom in Medford, or Melrose, or Somerville.

The investor: Richard Villegas, 30, is a lawyer in Washington, D.C., who has invested in real estate for five years. He owns 12 one-bedroom or studio apartment units in Washington D.C. and the Virginia suburbs of Washington, including the one described here. In October, he left his law career to invest full-time in real estate and also secured his real-estate agent’s license.

The strategy: Mr. Villegas says he seeks small condos and apartments located near prominent Washington DC-area Metro stops where he says he can ask high rents. He primarily buys and holds property, but he does occasionally purchase and fix up homes for quick resale, as he plans to do with this unit. When he finds a fixer-upper, he typically asks sellers to let him begin renovations before closing, he says. This allows him to complete renovations within two to four weeks, before closing is complete, and market the property as soon as the sale goes through. While this approach has its financial risks, especially if a deal doesn’t close, sellers are usually amenable, he says.

Complete article: D.C.-Area Landlord’s Bets Ride On Metro-Stop Properties – by Jane Hodges, The Wall Street Journal

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Updated: January 2018

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