Egypt Sherrod knows how to make money in real estate.
“I grew up knowing that real estate was the foundation of wealth,” says the host of HGTV’s Property Virgins and author of Keep Calm…It’s Just Real Estate. “I came from a family of real estate brokers, so I don’t need to tell you what holidays were like, [and] what the conversation was.”
With two decades of experience, Sherrod shares her real estate success secrets:
1. First, You Have to Be in It to Win It
Sherrod says she knows many people, especially blacks, may have been scared away from home ownership.
“‘The American Dream,’ I think, for a lot of people has started to disappear. They [have] lost faith. But, what we have to know is that everything that goes up will come down—but it’ll also go back up again.”
She says you can still make money in real estate, and that home ownership is still one of the best ways to build long-term wealth. So, get off the sidelines and get in the game!
“What we were taught early on was that real estate is the foundation of wealth. Real estate is what built middle-class America—that’s what built our 401(k)s, and that’s what set us up for retirement. It was: you go to school, you get a good job, you get married, you buy a house,” she says.
2. When You Have Extra Money, Put It in Property
Are you making significant money for the first time? Sherrod says that for her, real estate was the answer to her ability to hold on to more of her money.
“I got my real estate license when I was 24 or 25. I flipped my first property when I got my first big paycheck in radio, when I moved to New York City from Baltimore. You know, when I first started making money and realized, ‘I have to do something with my money, and make my money work for me’—my first default was real estate.”
“So, I bought investment property in Newark, New Jersey, and flipped those babies. Honestly, it was fun. It’s a rush. That’s what flipping properties was like for me,” she says.
3. Take a Long-Term Approach
Flipping houses isn’t for everyone. Sometimes, it makes more sense to hold on to a property. If you’re looking for a more traditional approach to make money in real estate, consider becoming a landlord.
“Every property you buy, don’t sell it. If you hold on to your property, rent it out, and keep raising the rent. As long as you’re paying your bills, you could go and find something else [to invest in] now—and, that’s the way to do it. Hold on to it. Use it as your retirement plan. Let someone else pay off your mortgage.”