April 13, 2024


Mad about real estate

Key Points to IRA Real Estate Investing

IRA investing in real estate is becoming increasingly popular.  There is no way to cover all of the ins and outs of IRA real estate investing in a single article of this length, but I can at least give you some of the highlights.

If you’ve heard or read the success stories, you may be “chomping at the bit”, but IRA investing in real estate is not without risks.  So, you need to get some education first.  

Experienced investors have programs that can help.  Of course, advice like that is not free, but if it helps you find good deals and avoid the common mistakes, then it is well worth the cost. 

In order to begin IRA real estate investing, you need a self directed account and an account custodian.  You should choose someone reliable, with years of experience.  They can’t suggest specific deals or anything like that, but they can provide you with some of the education that you need.

For example, the better custodians provide education about prohibited transactions, prohibited investment types and the rules about self-dealing.  If you make a mistake, your account could lose its tax free status.

Once you have selected an account custodian, you need to decide how to fund the account.  If you currently have a traditional account, you should be able to “roll it over”, without penalty, although the bank or brokerage that you are currently using may charge a fee.

This is the best time to consider IRA investing in real estate, because you may have a large amount of un-invested cash.  If you can find a few good deals, you can make big profits quickly.  Or, if you want a consistent flow of income into the account, you may want to consider a rental property.

There are many options to choose from when it comes to IRA real estate investing.  You can buy houses, apartment buildings, raw land, mobile homes, and office buildings or simply finance other people’s homes.  But, there are some things that you must avoid.

You cannot sell your own home to your account.  You cannot use the account to buy property that you plan to live in at some point in the future.  Your sons and daughters cannot rent apartments in buildings that owned by the account.  Your parents could not have an office in a building held within the account.

The list of prohibited transactions is relative long, but not complicated, once you think about it.  IRA investing in real estate or any other vehicle is designed to benefit your future, not your present day wealth.  So, if you benefit from an investment, either directly or indirectly, your account could lose its tax free status. 

One of the primary reasons that experienced investors suggest IRA real estate investing is because of the tax advantages.  If you sell a property for a profit, there are no capital gains taxes.  If the account makes rental income from a property that was purchased with cash from the account, there is no income tax.

So, experienced investors sometimes save as much as 25{ef6a2958fe8e96bc49a2b3c1c7204a1bbdb5dac70ce68e07dc54113a68252ca4} by using their retirement accounts.  That’s only a few of the advantages of IRA investing in real estate.  It’s probably just enough to make you curious.