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Money Matters:
Expected returns and investment experience

This is the fourth and final article Money Matters series by guest columnist Jake Pence. You can read part one What's the best way to invest in your future here, part two on the importance of Liquidity and diversification and part three covering real estate taxation here.

by Jake Pence, Guest Columnist

This is what so many people get caught up in "Expected Returns". In other words, which investment vehicle will make more money.

In reality, this is like comparing apples to oranges. The most convenient way to compare the returns is using the S&P 500 and a Vanguard Real Estate ETF and throwing them up side by side.

If I’m being honest, I think this is a lazy methodology and it is only used because of the convenience. In general, the returns will be comparable, but it will come down to the specific investment opportunity and it is lazy to make blanket statements about returns. Obviously, you need to invest in an asset that will create a return; however, there are other items to consider such as the investing experience, diversification, taxation, risk management, liquidity, and your financial goals.

Finally, something that is often overlooked in any investment is the experience of that investment.

When I say experience, I mean how is your investment going to make you feel, affect your sleep, make a societal impact, and so on. To this point, this article has been fact-driven, but the remainder of this section is 100% my personal opinion and it is absolutely biased towards real estate.

The stock market is great for people who want to put their money into a system to generate a long-term return without having to make many decisions. I worry about people who have all of their money tied up in the stock market and/or retirement accounts that are exclusively invested in the stock market (you can use them to invest in real estate too). The reason being, I don’t trust the decision makers that control these financial markets and I would rather have my money in Main Street real estate than on Wall Street.

Real estate is great for people who want to have more control over their investment, make a societal impact, and generate long-term wealth.

I love being able to create my own business plan, to meet my residents and give them a place to call home, and the proven path to create a generational financial impact. I worry about real estate investors who think that they will be able to get rich quick and think it will be easy money.

News flash … it’s a grind. There are a lot of bad actors in the industry that only care about money, and I think that is short-sighted in that this is long-term game.

In conclusion, the answer to this question should come from within and it should complement your financial goals and individual skill set.

To me, that means I should heavily invest in real estate and opportunistically invest in the stock market. To you, that could mean an entirely different investing strategy.

I encourage you to further your research on both of these topics and seek out reputable investors that have experience with both real estate and/or the stock market. When talking with other investors, make sure that you come into the conversation with an open mind, do your best to leave your biases at the door, and give yourself the chance to create a better financial future.

About the author:
• Jake Pence is the President of Blue Chip Real Estate and a consultant for Fairlawn Capital, Inc.. A 2019 graduate from the Gies College of Business at the University of Illinois, he is a 2016 graduate from St. Joseph-Ogden High School where he was a three-sport athlete for the Spartans. You can view his latest acquisitions and advice on his YouTube channel here.

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