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How to calculate the profitability of a real estate investment

21 March, 2024by balize
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Real estate investments have long been a popular option for wealth growth. However, before diving into the world of real estate, it's crucial to understand how to calculate the profitability of a real estate investment. In this article, we explain ROI or Return on Investment in the real estate context, how it's calculated, the factors that influence profitability, what is considered a high return, and the most profitable types of real estate investments.

What is ROI or Return on investment?

Return on Investment (ROI) is an essential metric for evaluating how much money we make or lose on an investment in relation to the initial capital invested. In the context of real estate investments, ROI provides us with an effective way to measure the profitability of a property over time.

How ROI is Calculated

The calculation of ROI is relatively straightforward. The basic formula is:

ROI = (Earnings - Costs) / Costs × 100

This calculation provides the ROI as a percentage. The higher the percentage, the greater the profitability of the investment.

Practical Examples of ROI Calculation

Let's say you invest 100,000 euros in a property and after a year, you earn 10,000 euros in rental income and the property generates 5,000 euros in expenses. The calculation would be as follows:

ROI = (10,000 - 5,000) / 100,000 × 100 = 5%

This means that your real estate investment generated an ROI of 5% in the first year.

Factors Influencing the Profitability of a Real Estate Investment

The profitability of a real estate investment is influenced by several key factors, and understanding them is essential for making informed financial decisions.

Property Location

The location of a property is one of the most critical factors affecting its profitability. Locations in high-demand areas tend to be more profitable because they are more likely to attract tenants and experience an increase in value over time. Proximity to schools, shopping centers, public transportation, and other services is attractive to tenants and can increase the property's value. On the other hand, investing in areas with sustained economic growth tends to be more profitable, as the demand for housing tends to increase.

Property Type

The type of property you choose has a significant impact on profitability. Single-family homes may be easier to manage but tend to generate less income than multifamily properties, which offer the advantage of obtaining multiple rentals but require more complex management. As for commercial real estate, they often have long-term lease contracts and are much more profitable, but such properties usually require a considerable initial investment.

Supply and Demand

The relationship between supply and demand in the local real estate market is a crucial factor. In growing markets where demand exceeds supply, prices are likely to rise, which can increase the profitability of the investment. Conversely, in saturated markets, where there is a large supply and little demand, prices may stagnate or decrease, negatively affecting profitability.

Acquisition and Maintenance Costs

The costs associated with acquiring and maintaining a property are another factor influencing profitability. These expenses include initial costs (purchase expenses, commissions, transfer taxes, financing costs, etc.), maintenance expenses (repairs, community fees, taxes, management fees, etc.), and renovation or refurbishment costs, which, however, can increase the property's value.


Tax aspects also impact profitability. Local tax rates can vary and affect the financial burden of the owner. Some real estate investments may offer tax benefits, such as mortgage interest deductions or depreciation, which can improve profitability. Local regulations can affect the costs and profitability of a property, such as short-term rental restrictions in certain areas.

We provide all this information at balize, thanks to our Investments team, which is responsible for locating the most attractive projects with the best profitability to offer them in the form of a tokenized real estate project with an investment starting from 10,000€.

What Profitability is Considered High in a Real Estate Investment?

The profitability considered "high" varies according to the market and associated risks. In general, an ROI above 8% is considered high, but in growing markets, higher returns can be found. According to the Bank of Spain, an investment with a net return between 4% and 7% can be considered attractive. According to data from the same institution, the gross rental yield in Spain was 3.5% in 2022, although these figures are global and depend largely on the geographical location of the property.

Types of Real Estate Investments with Higher Profitability

Some types of real estate investments tend to be more profitable than others. These include multifamily properties, investment in commercial real estate, and properties in emerging markets.

Multifamily Properties

Multifamily properties, such as apartment buildings or housing complexes, are an excellent choice for investors seeking consistent passive income. These properties often yield a higher return than single-family homes due to the possibility of having multiple rental units. Additional tenants can increase monthly income and help cover operating and maintenance costs.

Furthermore, multifamily properties are often more management-efficient. Centralized management can facilitate maintenance and problem-solving, which in turn can improve profitability. However, it's important to conduct thorough research before investing in multifamily properties, as effective management and maintenance are crucial for success.

Investment in Commercial Real Estate

Investments in commercial real estate involve purchasing properties intended for business use, such as retail spaces, offices, warehouses, and shopping centers. These properties typically offer an attractive ROI due to long-term lease agreements with commercial tenants. Tenants are usually established businesses seeking strategic locations, ensuring steady income.

In addition, in commercial real estate, it's common for tenants to bear a significant part of the operating and maintenance costs, which eases the financial burden on the owner. However, investing in commercial real estate may require substantial initial capital and specialized knowledge to properly assess opportunities and risks.

Properties in Emerging Markets

Emerging markets often present attractive real estate investment opportunities due to potential demand growth. In these markets, the demand for residential and commercial properties can exceed supply, leading to an increase in property values and significant ROI.

However, investing in emerging markets also involves risks. The economic and political stability of the region, as well as the infrastructure and real estate laws, can vary considerably. It's essential to conduct thorough research and consider portfolio diversification to mitigate the risks associated with these investments.

While these types of real estate investments are usually more profitable, it's important to emphasize that profitability depends on multiple factors, including location, management, and economic conditions. Before investing in any type of property, it's essential to perform a comprehensive analysis and consider your short and long-term financial goals. Portfolio diversification can also be a smart strategy to reduce risks and maximize returns in the competitive world of real estate investment.

To make informed, safe, and efficient real estate investments, we have created a blockchain-based real estate investment platform at balize. By tokenizing real estate projects, we manage to increase investment accessibility and minimize risk. You can register on the platform and start investing from 10,000€ in projects previously validated by our specialists.


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