What first made you interested in real estate syndications? It may seem like a trick question, but there is normally one answer we hear from new investors. “To make money.” When a new investor is considering investing in a real estate syndication, the two questions we get asked are, “How much could I make if I invest $100,000 with you?” and “How we mitigate risk and protect your investment?”
Making money is one of the biggest motivators for investing in real estate, and we love a good return! However, returns are actually not the most important aspect we focus on when evaluating potential deals.
Passive income and double-digit returns are pretty exciting, but what we really focus on is actually more boring than taxes and K-1s.
We focus on capital preservation first and foremost. This means we make sure the deal has multiple plans, which will help protect investor capital loss. That’s our number one priority throughout the lifecycle of every deal.
WHY IT’S IMPORTANT TO TALK ABOUT CAPITAL PRESERVATION
Capital preservation is in no way the most exciting part of investing in real estate syndications, but it is one of the most critical pieces.
It’s easy to just focus on all of the exciting stuff like cash flow returns, potential earnings, and brightly colored marketing packages. Still, when an unexpected situation arises, you’ll be thankful (for this article and) for a sponsor team that gives capital preservation the attention it deserves.
Capital preservation is all about mitigating risk, and you never want to lose money!
No matter what you invest in or who you invest with, you should know what to ask and what to look for so you can invest confidently with a team that holds your best interest.
5 CAPITAL PRESERVATIONS PILLARS
At the core of every investment in which we participate, capital preservation is our number one priority. 5 building blocks make up our capital preservation strategy.
#1 – RAISE MONEY TO COVER CAPITAL EXPENDITURES UPFRONT
Imagine the avalanche of problems that can accumulate when capital expenditures (like renovations) must be funded purely by cash flow. In this case, cash-on-cash returns, which vary based on occupancy and maintenance costs, would have to fund sudden HVAC repairs instead of unit renovations according to the business plan. In this case, the business plan falls behind schedule, units aren’t ready as planned, and vacancy persists.
Instead, we ensure the funds for capital expenditures are set aside upfront. As an example, if we need $2 million for the down payment and $1 million for renovations, we will raise $3 million upfront. This means we have $1 million cash for renovations and won’t have to rely on monthly cash-on-cash returns.
#2 – PURCHASE CASH-FLOWING PROPERTIES
One great option to preserve capital is to purchase properties that produce cash flow immediately, even before improvements. If units don’t fill as planned or the business plan isn’t going smoothly, just holding the property would still allow positive cash flow.
#3 – STRESS TEST EVERY INVESTMENT
Performing a sensitivity analysis of the business plan prior to investing allows us to see if the investment can weather the worst conditions. What if vacancy rose to 15% and what would happen if the exit cap rate was higher than expected?
Properties look wonderful when they’re featured in fancy marketing brochures with attractive proformas (i.e., projected budgets), but stress testing those numbers helps us take a look at how the performance of the investment may adjust based on potential variability in variables.
#4 – HAVE MULTIPLE EXIT STRATEGIES IN PLACE
In any disaster or emergency, you want to have several ways out. In case of a fire, you want a door and window. The same goes for real estate syndications.
Even if the plan is to hold the property for five years, no one really knows what the market conditions will be at that 5-year mark. So, it’s important to account for contingency plans in case you need to hold the property longer and the possibility of preparing the property for different types of end buyers (private investors, institutional buyers, etc.).
#5 – PUT TOGETHER AN EXPERIENCED TEAM THAT VALUES CAPITAL PRESERVATION
Possibly the most critical pillar of all is to have a team that values capital preservation. This includes both the sponsor and operator team(s) and the property management team. All of these people should be passionate about their role and display a strong track record of success.
The more experience they have in successfully navigating tough situations, the better and more likely they will be able to protect investor capital.
CAPITAL PRESERVATION = PEACE OF MIND
Capital preservation is not exciting, but it is one of the most critical building blocks when developing a solid deal. It allows the investors to have peace of mind and know the sponsor/operator team is always working on their behalf to preserve investor capital.
The five capital preservation pillars used in real estate syndication deals we do include:
- Raise money to cover capital expenditures upfront
- Purchase cash-flowing properties
- Stress test every investment
- Have multiple exit strategies in place
- Put together an experienced team that values capital preservation
Since we use the same five pillars for every deal we take on, we minimize risk as much as possible and make sure every decision about the property protects investor money (your money) first and foremost.
Best Investment Risk Management Strategies
Understanding the strategies that can help you minimize financial risks and achieve financial freedom. Every investment comes with both risk and return. To limit your losses and increase your profits, we offer you expert-level techniques to help you reduce risks and attain higher returns.
- Educate yourself about the assets under consideration and the different types of investments.
- Check your current financial situation and the amount of cash in your bank account.
- Analyze historical data and current and future market trends.
- Only invest in assets that align with your financial goals and that you understand.
Asset allocation strategy is a method of measuring the proportion of your investments in your portfolio. It helps you achieve your financial goals by allowing you to invest in different asset classes such as bonds, stocks, cash, and other investments. Using this approach, you can also consider your tax situation, time horizon, and risk tolerance.
Rebalancing Portfolio Volatility
One way to protect your investment and reduce risk is by rebalancing your portfolio’s volatility. It involves keeping a portion of your account in cash and adjusting the percentage of your stocks and bonds.
If you’re concerned about market volatility, investing in lower-duration bonds can help to mitigate risk in your investment portfolio. Although bonds are not entirely risk-free, lower-duration bonds can play a defensive role in your investment strategy. When interest rates fall, bond prices tend to increase and vice versa.
Another way to rebalance your portfolio’s volatility is by reducing your stocks. If the stock market is too risky, consider investing more in bonds and focusing on long-term investments.