Search form

(Updated October 2016)

Real estate investing is back in vogue. Today there are more vehicles for investment than ever before, from directly buying a property, to REITs, even to crowdsourcing. Whether you are going the old-fashioned route or want to find out about the latest trends, this updated field guide should offer some insight. Find out how to get started, invest with IRAs, use real estate as a retirement tool, get information on rental homes, buying tax liens, real estate partnerships, and much more in these books and articles. (D. Winchester, Information Specialist)

E - EBSCO articles available for NAR members only. Password can be found on the EBSCO Access Information page.

Why Invest in Real Estate?

This is the best time in history to invest in real estate, (Marketwatch, Aug. 23, 2016).

Americans Sold on Real Estate as Best Long-Term Investment, (Gallup, April 17, 2014)—Real estate returns as the most popular investment, beating out gold and stocks.

Real estate investing attracting younger crowd (Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Apr. 25, 2013)—One of the biggest challenges in today’s market is finding homes to buy.

Snapping up Real Estate (Wall Street Journal, Apr. 19, 2013)—Investing directly in property can be an attractive alternative to low-yielding bonds but isn't for everyone.

Passively Investing in Real Estate is Critical for Retirement (®, Nov. 16, 2011).

Real Estate Investing: How Will it End? (Realty Times, Feb. 24, 2010)—Curveballs and unexpected complications can throw anyone’s investment plans out of whack. Plan for the future before things get out of hand.

Adding Real Estate to Your Portfolio

Boost Your Income by Adding Real Estate to Your Portfolio, (Forbes, Oct. 10, 2016).

Real estate adds diversification, but how should you invest? (CNBC, Oct. 6, 2016).

An investor who owns 4,000 apartments explains why multi-family real estate is the best investment he's made, (Business Insider, Aug. 16, 2016).

Here’s how leading real estate investors are different than the other 95%, (Housing Wire, June 23, 2014)—Where they focus, how they get their money – it’s a different world.

Roof, 4 Walls…& Income (Financial Planning, May 2013)—Real estate investing is not for everyone – but for interested clients, a good planner can make all the difference. E

How to strike it rich: Investing in real estate (Kiplinger, May 2013)—Expert tips on high- and low-risk ways to cash-in on investing in real estate.

First-time real estate investment strategy (Realty Times, Oct. 30, 2012)—With home ownership more tenuous now than in previous years, more and more Americans are living in rental properties, and that means investing in a rental property can be a lucrative venture.

Stress-Free Real Estate (Forbes, Nov. 16, 2011)—By packaging sale-leasebacks together, triple-net lease REITs offer solid ¬income with maximum safety and minimum hassles.

What it Takes to Be a Landlord (Kiplinger, June 2011)— A couple of pros share their hard-nosed approach to buying low and renting high.

Options for Investing in Real Estate

Simple Ways to Invest in Real Estate, (Investopedia, July 1, 2016).

The Pros and Cons of Investing in Real Estate ETFs, (US News & World Report, June 5, 2014)—Should you tap into the real estate market through exchange-traded funds? Here's what you need to know.

Real-Estate Sector Moves Crowdfunding Beyond the Trinkets, (Wall Street Journal, June 11, 2014)—Sites Have Raised More Than $135 Million in Debt and Equity. The newspaper also has a good overview/FAQ to the concept of crowdfunding real estate.

The Investors Guide to REITs, (National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts, 2014)—An introduction to investing in Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs).

More US investors spanning the globe for real estate (MSN Money, Apr. 26, 2013)—U.S. investors are rediscovering their appetite for foreign real estate. Attracted by potentially higher returns, they are putting more money into overseas funds that invest in offices, malls and apartment complexes than they have in six years.

eBooks & Other Resources

The following eBooks and digital audiobooks (among many others—search 'investing' and you will find over 80 titles) are available to NAR members:

40 Days to Success in Real Estate Investing (Kindle, Adobe eReader)

The ABC's of Real Estate Investing (Overdrive Audiobook)

After the Fall, (Kindle, Adobe eReader)

All About Investing (Adobe eReader)

All About Real Estate Investing (Adobe eReader)

The All-New Real Estate Foreclosure, Short-Selling, Underwater, Property Auction, Positive Cash Flow Book (Kindle, Adobe eReader)

The Beginner's Guide to Real Estate Investing (Adobe eReader)

Buy, Rent, and Sell: How to Profit by Investing in Residential Real Estate (Adobe eReader)

The Complete Guide to Real Estate Finance for Investment Properties (Kindle, Adobe eReader)

The Ultimate Real Estate Investing Handbook (Adobe eReader)

The Complete Idiot's Guide to Real Estate Investing Basics (Kindle, Adobe eReader)

The Everything Real Estate Investing Book (Kindle, Adobe eReader)

Getting Started in Real Estate Investing (Adobe eReader)

How a Second Home Can Be Your Best Investment (Adobe eReader)

The Insider's Guide to Tax-Free Real Estate Investments (Adobe eReader)

Insider Secrets to Financing Your Real Estate Investments (Adobe eReader)

Investing in Real Estate (Adobe EPUB)

Make Money in Short-Sale Foreclosures (Kindle, Adobe eReader)

Real Estate Investing for Dummies® (Kindle, Adobe eReader)

Real Estate Investing for the Utterly Confused (Adobe eReader)

Trump University Real Estate 101: Building Wealth with Real Estate Investments (Kindle, Adobe eReader)

The Wall Street Journal Complete Real-Estate Investing Guidebook (Kindle, Adobe eReader)

Books, Videos, Research Reports & More

The resources below are available for loan through Information Services. Up to three books, tapes, CDs and/or DVDs can be borrowed for 30 days from the Library for a nominal fee of $10. Call Information Services at 800-874-6500 for assistance.

Commercial real estate investing: a creative guide to successfully making money (Chicago: John Wiley & Sons, 2008). HG 4521 D34

Trump University real estate 101: building wealth with real estate investments (Chicago: John Wiley & Sons, 2006). HG 4521 El2t

Commercial real estate investing: 12 easy steps to getting started (Chicago: John Wiley & Sons, 2005). HG 4521 C91c

Real Estate Investing Made Simple: A Commonsense Approach to Building Wealth (New York: American Management Association, 2005). HG 4521 C23

Successful real estate investing (Hoboken, NJ: Wiley Publishing, 2004). HG 4521 Sh3s

Goldmining in foreclosed properties (New York: John Wiley & Sons, 2003). HG 4521 Ac4

Investing in real estate (New York: John Wiley & Sons, 2003). HG 4521 M22i

Investment analysis for real estate decisions (Chicago: Dearborn Financial, 2003). HG 4521 G81 Ed. 5

IRA wealth: revolutionary IRA strategies for real estate investment (Garden City, NY: Square One Publishers, 2003). HG 4521 R36

Real estate investing from A to Z (New York: McGraw Hill, 2003). HG 4521 P68

Real estate investment trusts: Structure, performance, and investment opportunities (New York: Oxford University Press, 2003). HG 5095 C48

Real estate investor's deskbook (Boston: West Group, 2002). HG 4521 Ar6re Ed. 3

Essentials of real estate investment (Chicago: Real Estate Education Company, 2001). HG 4521 Si7 Ed. 6

Real wealth by investing in real estate (Paramus, NJ: Prentice-Hall, 2001). HG 4521 R59

Rental houses for the successful small investor (Boulder, CO: Gemstone House Publishing, 1999). HD 1394 T36

Field Guides & More

These field guides and other resources in the Virtual Library may also be of interest:

Field Guide to 1031 Exchanges

Field Guide to REALTOR® Income

Field Guide to Vacation Homes

Information Services Blog

Have an Idea for a New Field Guide?

Click here to send us your suggestions.

The inclusion of links on this field guide does not imply endorsement by the National Association of REALTORS®. NAR makes no representations about whether the content of any external sites which may be linked in this field guide complies with state or federal laws or regulations or with applicable NAR policies. These links are provided for your convenience only and you rely on them at your own risk.