The average American has a number of investment vehicles available to them, but certain investment platforms are only available to larger entities. However, recent changes have made certain types of investments – such as pooled-funds investments – accessible to smaller investors who may not have the type of investment capital to work with compared to larger investment firms.
Under the Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act, which was signed into law by President Obama on April 5, 2012, the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) relaxed the rules about advertising investments. This allowed the trend of crowdfunding to expand dramatically giving real estate investors more opportunities for pooled-funds investing.
The JOBS Act was created to encourage the funding of small businesses in the US by relaxing many of the securities regulations in the country. It was signed into law by President Barack Obama in 2012 after being passed with bipartisan support.
What Is Pooled-Funds Investing?
A pooled investment fund takes in money from a group of investors to use to acquire real estate for larger amounts than each investor’s money would support. Pooled funds are those that are held in a portfolio from individual investors that are combined to invest in large investments.
Basically, a pooled fund investment in WA, ID, OR, or CO is an investment fund that is raised by pooling smaller investments from several individuals. Everyone involved contributes to the pot, and the funds accumulated can then be invested in larger investments.
Groups like trusts and partnerships make use of pooled funds to invest, and individual investors in the pooled funds investment account are treated as single holders of the account. In turn, this lets them purchase more shares together than they would be able to do on their own. Further, they may be able to take advantage of lower prices.
JOBS Act Helps Smaller Investors Benefit From More Lucrative Investments
Prior to the passage of the JOBS Act, these pooled investment funds were only accessible by large investors through private placements and private real estate investment trusts (REITs).
The minimum investment might be up to $250,000 or more. High-net-worth individual investors and institutions were the only investors capable of the buy-in to gain access to these investments, which usually offered better and more stable returns.
After the JOBS Act came into being, the advertising of these pooled investment funds was possible under the new law. The phenomena of crowdfunding came out of this. Money from many investors creates a larger investment fund managed by a professional team, intending to obtain strong performance results. This presents a great opportunity for much smaller investors who may not have high amounts of capital to have participated before the JOBS Act came into effect.
Better Investment Opportunities For The Smaller Investor
These new investment opportunities allow the smaller investor to participate in a greater diversity of real estate than they could achieve on their own. Moreover, an investor can create a pooled fund to acquire a property with the help of other investors. To use this technique to buy real estate, it is helpful to work with a qualified real estate agent or broker who understands this concept of pooled investment funds.
Examples of Pooled Funds Investing
- Mutual funds – Professional fund managers raise capital from several people and companies and combine this capital into one large fund. The fund is then used to buy and manage a portfolio of investments.
- Exchange traded funds (ETFs) – This is an investment fund that tracks a specific index, such as the NASDAQ or S&P 500. Fund managers then raise capital from different investors and pool it into one big fund to make investments.
- Real estate investment trusts (REITs) – Many investors prefer to focus on real estate when investing, which can be done with pooled funds investing. A REIT is a common pooled investment vehicle and is a real estate firm that pools money raised from investors. The pooled funds are then used to buy real estate with the intent of accumulating a large portfolio of properties. REITs usually focus on one type of property, such as commercial units, industrial buildings, or apartment buildings.REITs typically require a large minimum investment, which is why it is helpful for smaller individual investors to get in on these REITs to take advantage of the larger pool of funds available to invest.
Benefits of Pooled Funds Investing
- More negotiating leverage for smaller investors to get the price they want
- More selection in the types of investment vehicles available
- Professional management of investments
- Ability to make larger-scale investments
- Lower costs of buying and selling shares per invested dollar
- Diversification of investments
Due Diligence Required
Every type of investment requires a certain amount of homework to ensure that your capital is being invested wisely and to mitigate against risk. Not all investment pools succeed in producing decent returns for investors. The SEC is no longer regulating these pooled investments carefully. This means that the challenge of due diligence falls on the individual investor.
Before investing, it pays to conduct exhaustive research about the pooled investment fund, the cost of the fund management fees, the expertise of the fund’s management, and their past investment-performance history. Always remember past results are no guarantee of future performance and never invest any funds that you cannot afford to lose.
The relaxing of SEC regulations in 2012 allowed many opportunities in Portland or Boise for pooled investments to flourish. While there is the possibility of strong returns on investment, there is also some risk. Investors considering a pooled investment fund, such as a crowdfunding deal, should conduct thorough due diligence and get advice from a qualified REALTORS® in the market where the property will be located before making any investment.
Need a Mortgage to Finance an Investment Property Purchase?
If you’re in need of a mortgage or have questions about home loans, Sammamish Mortgage can help. We are a local mortgage firm serving borrowers across Washington, Idaho, Colorado, and Oregon. We have been offering several mortgage programs with flexible qualification criteria since 1992. Please contact us if you have any questions or are ready to apply for a mortgage.