So you’ve decided to make your first real estate investment. Congratulations! It’s a big step. In this article, I’ll take you through the process from start to finish.
Hi. I’m Tom, and I’m a Senior Associate on the Investor Services team at RealtyShares.
If you ever have a question about RealtyShares or how to invest in real estate, just give us a call at 1-855-880-6050.
All right. Let’s review everything you’ve done up to this point.
Laying the Foundation
First—and this is probably the most important step—you thought about your personal financial goals, as well as how much risk you feel comfortable taking on.
This will play a big role in determining which investments you may select and how much you should consider allocating to commercial real estate through our platform.
Next you signed up for your free account with RealtyShares.
Need to go back and do some catching up? No problem. You can find some suggestions on how to get started in the other articles linked on this page.
I’ll be here when you’re ready.
Create an Investment Profile
After you’ve signed up for your free account, you’ll create an account profile. These details tell us how and where you’d like to hold your investment.
- For example, if you’d like to invest through an IRA account or a family LLC, this is where you would indicate that.
You’ll also need to provide information about your combined household income and net worth so that we can determine if you are an accredited investor.
At this time, only accredited investors can invest with RealtyShares.
The final step prior to being able to place an investment is linking your bank account. We’ll use it for two things:
1. The first is to fund investments that you decide you’d like to join.
2. The second is to send you cash distributions from your existing investments.
To link a bank account, you’ll need your bank account number and the bank’s routing number.
You can find both of them on one of your checks, along the bottom row. To verify your account, we’ll send you a test deposit of a few pennies.
At this point I’d like to say a few quick words about security.
It’s important to know that when you give us your financial information, we take the security of that information very seriously. We continuously improve our security technology and keep up with industry best practices to make sure that all due precautions are being taken with your information.
You Browse and Invest
Now comes the fun part.
Once you’ve linked your bank account, you can start browsing investments and pick one or more that align with your financial goals.
At RealtyShares, we offer both debt and equity investments across a wide variety of property types and geographic regions.
Maybe you’ll decide to invest in a multifamily apartment complex outside of Dallas. Or maybe a hotel in downtown Philadelphia catches your eye.
We’ve usually got about 10 investments on the platform, with new ones added every week, so there are plenty to choose from.
Once you’ve selected the project that you’d like to invest in, navigate to the website content that describes that offering—what we sometimes refer to as a “deal page.”
Once you’ve reviewed all the information, including the other legal documents attached there, then you’re ready to go. Simply click “invest.”
That will take you to the investment flow. Here, you’ll tell us how much you’d like to invest and which account profile (if you have more than one) you’d like the investment held in. It’s also when we’ll ask you for your social security number, which we need for tax reporting purposes.
Once you’ve reviewed your investment package, you’ll finalize your investment by signing with HelloSign, an electronic e-signing platform.
Once that is completed, you’re done on your end.
Now we’ll conduct a final compliance check on your account. Once that comes back clear and the project is near to closing, we’ll debit your account.
We Take Care of the Rest
You’ve made your first real estate investment. Now you can check the status of your investment on your investor dashboard.
That feature includes up-to-date performance metrics, accrual dates, and scheduled cash distributions.
We’ll also send you quarterly updates on the status of your investment and—assuming the project is performing according to plan—deposit your payments directly into your bank account.
And that’s it!
Yes, it really is that easy. If you’re interested in learning more, I recommend checking out our article on How to Read a Deal Page.
In the meantime, if you’ve got any questions, you can always give us a call. The number is 1-855-880-6050. Happy reading, and I hope to see you soon.
Keep in mind that real estate investments involve risk and are not insured; as such, they run the risk of loss, including the loss of invested capital. Before investing, you should carefully review the offering materials and arrive at a realistic understanding of your own risk profile.