5 benefits of investing in real estate vs the stock market
By Dharma -

Are you aware of the benefits of investing in real estate? Suppose you have some extra money burning a hole in your pocket, and you want to use it to secure your financial future … ensure a comfortable retirement … maybe build a legacy for your family.

You will probably consider investing in real estate or stocks. Bonds grow too slowly, gold works better as a hedge against disaster, and commodities are all over the place. Investing in real estate and the stock market are the two forking paths down the road to prosperity … or, if badly invested, to ruin.

It’s a big decision. For five key reasons, though, we tilt toward real estate as the best vehicle for new investors. We may seem biased since we run a business in the real estate industry … but there is a reason we built our business in this industry.

Five benefits of investing in real estate

1. Less Volatility

Real estate markets do rise and fall, but on a more gentle, predictable cycle with lots of leading indicators for a buyer’s or seller’s market. It’s positively peaceful compared to the spikes and valleys that stocks can experience, sometimes with little rhyme or reason. Stock values are susceptible to breaking news, rumor, and insider manipulation. Real estate is insulated from most of that.

2. More Control

When you buy a stock, you are buying a small piece of a big company. Since you are probably not the CEO of that company, you have little control over how that company is run. You are probably not even qualified to understand the operational intricacies. Whether the company soars or tanks is very much out of your control.

A real estate investment, even a single rental house, is a business in itself. But compared to Starbucks or Comcast, it’s a small business, with operational details that a single human brain can keep track of, even a relative novice. You can visit the property, review the bills, screen prospective tenants, and overall exercise a lot more control over your investment’s destiny.

3. Cash Flow

The value of a stock increasing is similar to the value of a house increasing. But a quality rental unit also has the advantage of cash flow, the positive difference of the rental income vs. the expenses. Cash flow creates passive income streams and helps offset the illiquid nature of real estate equity. Stocks have cash flow in the form of dividends, but they are usually far less dependable.

4. Tax Advantages

Real estate investments are dynamite when it comes to reducing the investor’s tax liability, often offsetting income that isn’t even related to the investment! This comes in several forms, including:

  • The ability to deduct expenses like mortgage interest and repairs.
  • The ability to deduct a depreciation expense.
  • Rental income and capital gains taxed at lower rates.
  • The ability to defer capital gains liability with a 1031 exchange.
5. Risk Management

The only way to manage your risk with a stock purchase is to put a “stop-loss” trigger on your portfolio, or to buy less-risky stocks to begin with. But less-volatile “blue chip” stocks tend to grow slowly compared to the fliers.

Real estate offers more risk management opportunities, while at the same time offering growth potential that routinely beats inflation. Risk-averse investors could:

  • Buy more insurance.
  • Take on a smaller mortgage.
  • Screen tenants more strictly.
  • Hire a professional manager so fewer mistakes get made.