Building Your Power Team: Part 2

Getting your team in order should be your first priority when starting to invest in U.S. real estate. It’s a complicated business to enter into, and the surest way to be prepared for anything is to have the right people by your side. Henry Ford, perhaps one of the world’s most innovative and successful businessmen, said “Always be smart enough to hire people brighter than yourself.” Finding the right people who specialize in the various aspects of the real estate market will reduce your risk and give you the ever-elusive peace of mind.

Last week we discussed some of the members you need to have on your team. Here is the complete list:

Property Experts

One of the most obvious components of your team will be your realtor. They help you figure out what you can afford and they have insights into the local market that you are looking to invest in. Since they are experts on the process, they can suggest payment and financing methods while also providing a valuable professional network that you can leverage.

Your inspector will make sure that the property you are looking at is worth your investment. They check that everything is in working order, including your insulation, ventilation, heating and cooling systems, plumbing and electrical outlets. It’s important to get an inspector to perform an independent review of the property, because they get paid whether the sale goes through or not, so you know they are giving you a straight answer.

The other property expert you want to bring on-board, or at least have an on-going relationship with, is the developer. They organize renovations and re-leasing of buildings, and generally deal with the financing of properties.

Money Experts

When you’re dealing with U.S. real estate investments, it’s a good idea to get someone who specializes in the Canadian AND American side of things. This is especially true for lawyers, because real estate laws vary greatly between the two countries and even between states. Lawyers can help you avoid legal issues, which can pop up quite frequently if you’re not careful. There are often many legal agreements and contracts involved in U.S. real estate investing, and they get more complicated depending on the scope of your investment portfolio. Getting a lawyer’s advice before signing something you don’t quite understand is essential.

Just like with your lawyers, you will need an American and Canadian accountant, because they consult on tax issues pertaining to both countries. Nobody likes dealing with taxes, and an accountant will organize your tax forms and consult on your end-objectives from the investments you are looking to make.

An investment banker is necessary because he knows the local market and will be able to tell you if you are making a sound investment. Another market expert on the team will be the foreign exchange expert. Canadians like investing in U.S. real estate because of the strength of the Canadian dollar, and currency fluctuations can make or break your investments. The foreign exchanges can help you get a great deal on the initial exchange rate.

Stay tuned next week for the final installment of building your power team. In the meantime, be sure to follow us on Twitter and Facebook for daily tips and news on U.S. real estate investing.

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