How to Make Money in Real Estate: 7 Proven Strategies for Beginners

Real estate is one of the most lucrative and rewarding investments you can make. It can generate passive income, build equity, appreciate in value, and provide tax benefits.

However, it is not a get-rich-quick scheme. It requires knowledge, planning, strategy, and patience.

If you are a beginner who wants to learn how to make money in real estate, you might be overwhelmed by the different options and methods available. How do you choose the best one for your goals, budget, and risk tolerance?

In this article, we will explore seven proven strategies for making money in real estate, along with their pros and cons, and some tips on how to get started.

By the end of this article, you will have a better idea of how to make money in real estate and what steps to take next.

1. Buy and Hold

Buy and hold is the most common and traditional way of making money in real estate. It involves buying a property and holding it for a long period of time, while renting it out to tenants or living in it yourself.

The main sources of income from this strategy are rental income and capital appreciation.


  • Rental income can cover your mortgage payments, expenses, and generate cash flow.
  • Capital appreciation can increase your net worth and equity over time, especially in a rising market.
  • Tax benefits such as depreciation, mortgage interest deduction, and capital gains exclusion can lower your taxable income and increase your profits.
  • Leverage allows you to use other people’s money (such as banks or lenders) to buy a property with a small down payment, and multiply your returns.


  • Maintenance, repairs, vacancies, and tenant issues can eat into your cash flow and profits.
  • Market fluctuations can affect your property value and rental demand, and expose you to the risk of losing money or going underwater on your mortgage.
  • Illiquidity means that you cannot easily sell your property and access your equity, especially in a down market or a remote location.
  • Management can be time-consuming and stressful, unless you hire a professional property manager, which will reduce your cash flow.


  • Do your homework and research the market, the neighborhood, the property, and the numbers before buying a property.
  • Buy below market value and add value to your property through renovations, upgrades, or improvements.
  • Screen your tenants carefully and treat them well to reduce vacancies, turnover, and disputes.
  • Diversify your portfolio and invest in different types of properties, locations, and markets to reduce your risk and increase your returns.

2. Fix and Flip

Fix and flip is a popular and exciting way of making money in real estate. It involves buying a property that needs repairs or improvements, fixing it up, and selling it for a higher price.

The main source of income from this strategy is capital appreciation.


  • High returns can be achieved in a short period of time, depending on the market conditions and the quality of your work.
  • Creativity and satisfaction can be derived from transforming a rundown property into a beautiful and valuable one.
  • Control and flexibility allow you to choose your own projects, timelines, and exit strategies.


  • High risk and uncertainty can result from unexpected costs, delays, market changes, or legal issues, which can wipe out your profits or cause you to lose money.
  • High investment and expenses require you to have a lot of cash or access to financing, as well as pay for the purchase, renovation, holding, and selling costs of the property.
  • High competition and saturation can make it hard to find good deals, especially in hot markets where many investors are looking for the same opportunities.
  • High taxes and fees can reduce your profits, as you will have to pay income tax, capital gains tax, and realtor commissions on your sales.


  • Find a mentor or partner who has experience and expertise in fixing and flipping properties, and learn from them.
  • Build a team of reliable and reputable contractors, agents, lenders, and other professionals who can help you with your projects.
  • Analyze your deals carefully and conservatively, and factor in all the costs, risks, and potential profits before buying a property.
  • Sell your properties quickly and efficiently, and reinvest your profits into your next project.

3. Wholesale

Wholesale is a fast and easy way of making money in real estate without owning any property.

It involves finding a motivated seller who wants to sell their property below market value, and assigning the contract to a buyer who is willing to pay more for it.

The main source of income from this strategy is theassignment fee.


  • Low risk and investment require you to have little or no money or credit, as you are not buying or holding any property, but simply acting as a middleman between the seller and the buyer.
  • Fast and easy income can be generated in a matter of days or weeks, as you are not involved in the closing or the transaction, but only in the marketing and negotiation of the deal.
  • Scalability and volume allow you to do multiple deals at the same time, and increase your income potential.


  • Low profit margins can limit your earnings, as you are only making a small percentage of the difference between the seller’s price and the buyer’s price.
  • Legal and ethical issues can arise from the lack of transparency, disclosure, or licensing in your dealings with the seller and the buyer, and expose you to lawsuits or complaints.
  • Dependence and competition can affect your business, as you are relying on finding motivated sellers and buyers, and competing with other wholesalers and investors for the same deals.


  • Educate yourself and follow the laws and regulations of your state and local area regarding wholesaling and real estate transactions.
  • Build a network of buyers and sellers, and market yourself as a problem solver who can help them achieve their goals.
  • Find motivated sellers who are facing financial or personal distress, such as foreclosure, divorce, inheritance, or relocation, and offer them a quick and easy solution.
  • Find cash buyers who are looking for good deals, such as flippers, landlords, or rehabbers, and offer them a discounted property.


BRRRR stands for Buy, Rehab, Rent, Refinance, Repeat. It is a powerful and advanced way of making money in real estate.

It involves buying a property that needs repairs or improvements, fixing it up, renting it out, refinancing it to pull out your equity, and repeating the process with another property.

The main sources of income from this strategy are rental income, capital appreciation, and equity.


  • Infinite returns can be achieved by recycling your money and using other people’s money (such as banks or lenders) to fund your deals, and creating a snowball effect of wealth and cash flow.
  • Forced appreciation can be created by adding value to your property through renovations, upgrades, or improvements, and increasing its market value and rental income.
  • Tax benefits such as depreciation, mortgage interest deduction, and cash-out refinance can lower your taxable income and increase your profits.
  • Leverage and growth allow you to use your equity and cash flow to buy more properties and expand your portfolio.


  • Complexity and difficulty require you to have a lot of knowledge, experience, and skills in real estate investing, financing, and management, as well as a lot of time and effort to execute this strategy successfully.
  • Risk and liability can result from overleveraging, refinancing, or managing multiple properties, and expose you to the possibility of losing money or facing legal issues.
  • Cash flow and liquidity can be affected by the high debt service, expenses, and vacancies of your properties, and limit your ability to access your equity or sell your properties.


  • Start small and simple, and work your way up to bigger and more complex deals, as you gain more confidence and competence in this strategy.
  • Find a lender who is familiar and comfortable with the BRRRR strategy, and can offer you favourable terms and rates for your refinancing.
  • Hire a property manager who can handle the day-to-day operations and maintenance of your properties, and free up your time and energy for finding and analysing new deals.
  • Monitor your cash flow and equity, and adjust your strategy accordingly, to optimize your returns and minimize your risks.

5. House Hacking

House hacking is a smart and creative way of making money in real estate while living for free or cheap.

It involves buying a property that has multiple units or rooms, living in one of them, and renting out the rest to tenants or guests. The main sources of income from this strategy are rental income and capital appreciation.


  • Low cost and high return can be achieved by using your primary residence as an investment property, and having your tenants or guests pay for your mortgage, expenses, and lifestyle.
  • Learning and experience can be gained by becoming a landlord or a host, and learning the ropes of real estate investing and management, without taking too much risk or responsibility.
  • Lifestyle and flexibility can be enjoyed by choosing a property that suits your needs and preferences, and having the option to move out or sell your property when you want to.


  • Privacy and comfort can be compromised by sharing your space and amenities with your tenants or guests, and dealing with their issues or complaints.
  • Regulations and restrictions can limit your options and profits, as you will have to comply with the zoning, licensing, and tax rules of your area and property type, and deal with the homeowners association or the landlord if you are renting.
  • Commitment and opportunity cost can affect your future plans and goals, as you will have to live in your property for a certain period of time to avoid capital gains tax, and miss out on other investment opportunities.


  • Choose a property that has a high rental demand and a low vacancy rate, such as a duplex, a triplex, a fourplex, or a single-family home with extra bedrooms or a basement.
  • Use an FHA loan or a VA loan to buy your property with a low down payment and a low interest rate, and take advantage of the owner-occupancy requirement.
  • Screen your tenants or guests carefully and set clear rules and expectations, and respect their privacy and rights.
  • Live below your means and save your extra income, and use it to pay off your mortgage faster or buy another property.

6. Airbnb

Airbnb is a modern and trendy way of making money in real estate by leveraging the sharing economy. It involves renting out your property or a part of it to short-term guests who are looking for a place to stay.

The main source of income from this strategy is rental income.


  • High income and occupancy can be achieved by charging a premium rate and attracting a steady stream of guests, especially in a popular or seasonal destination, or during a special event or occasion.
  • Flexibility and convenience allow you to choose when and how often you want to rent out your property, and manage your bookings and communications online or through an app.
  • Hospitality and fun can be enjoyed by meeting and hosting people from different backgrounds and cultures, and sharing your local knowledge and recommendations.


  • Regulations and taxes can vary and change depending on your location and property type, and require you to register, obtain permits, pay fees, and collect and remit taxes.
  • Competition and reviews can affect your performance and reputation, as you will have to compete with other hosts and properties, and deal with the feedback and ratings of your guests.
  • Maintenance and cleaning can be costly and time-consuming, as you will have to keep your property in good condition and provide a comfortable and pleasant experience for your guests.
  • Liability and insurance can expose you to the risk of damage, theft, injury, or legal issues, and require you to have adequate coverage and protection for your property and your guests.


  • Create a professional and attractive listing that showcases your property and its features, amenities, and benefits, and includes high-quality photos and a catchy title and description.
  • Set a competitive and dynamic price that reflects the market demand and supply, and adjusts to the season, day, and time of your bookings.
  • Provide excellent customer service and communication, and respond to your guests’ inquiries, requests, and issues promptly and politely.
  • Go the extra mile and offer some perks and surprises, such as a welcome basket, a guidebook, or a discount coupon, to delight your guests and earn positive reviews and referrals.

7. REITs.

REITs stands for Real Estate Investment Trusts. They are companies that own, operate, or finance income-producing real estate properties, such as office buildings, shopping malls, hotels, or apartments.

They are traded like stocks on the stock market, and pay dividends to their shareholders. The main source of income from this strategy is dividend income.


  • Low barrier and high diversification can be achieved by investing in REITs with a small amount of money and gaining exposure to a variety of real estate sectors, markets, and properties.
  • Passive and stable income can be generated by receiving regular and consistent dividends from the REITs, which are required by law to distribute at least 90% of their taxable income to their shareholders.
  • Liquidity and transparency allow you to buy and sell your REITs easily and quickly, and access their financial and operational information and performance.


  • Low control and growth can limit your potential, as you are not involved in the management or decision-making of the REITs, and depend on their performance and policies.
  • High fees and taxes can reduce your returns, as you will have to pay commissions, expenses, and capital gains tax on your REITs, and cannot benefit from the depreciation or mortgage interest deduction of real estate properties.
  • Volatility and correlation can affect your portfolio, as REITs are subject to the fluctuations and risks of the stock market and the economy, and may not provide the diversification or hedge that you expect.


  • Do your research and analysis, and choose the REITs that match your goals, risk tolerance, and investment strategy, and have a strong track record, a competitive edge, and a sustainable dividend payout.
  • Diversify your portfolio and invest in different types of REITs, such as equity REITs, mortgage REITs, or hybrid REITs, and in different sectors, such as residential, commercial, industrial, or healthcare.
  • Reinvest your dividends and compound your returns, and take advantage of the power of compounding to grow your wealth over time.


Real estate is a great way to make money, but it is not a one-size-fits-all solution. There are many different strategies and methods to choose from, and each one has its own advantages and disadvantages, and requires its own skills and resources.

The best way to make money in real estate depends on your personal goals, preferences, and circumstances. You have to find the one that suits you best, and learn and master it.

However, no matter which strategy you choose, there are some universal principles and tips that can help you succeed in real estate investing, such as:

  • Educate yourself and keep learning about the market, the trends, the opportunities, and the risks of real estate investing, and stay updated and informed.
  • Plan your finances and budget your expenses, and make sure you have enough cash reserves and contingency funds to cover your costs and emergencies.
  • Network and build relationships with other investors, professionals, and mentors, and leverage their knowledge, experience, and connections to help you with your deals.
  • Take action and start small, and don’t let fear or analysis paralysis stop you from taking the first step, and learn from your mistakes and failures.

Real estate investing can be challenging and rewarding, but it can also be fun and fulfilling. If you are passionate and persistent, you can make money in real estate and achieve your financial and personal goals.


  • What is Real Estate and How to Invest in It : A Comprehensive Guide For Beginners
  • How to Start Your Journey in Real Estate Investing: A Beginner’s Guide
  • 5 Simple and Effective Strategies To Invest in Real Estate

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top