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You may have heard that investing in real estate is a great way to build wealth. However, you just don’t have the funds to buy a home or an investment property.

Cue DiversyFund, Roofstock, Rocket Dollar, Fundrise and Bigger Pockets. With these five services, you can try out investing without risking it all and start to learn about different real estate markets. If you already have a solid emergency fund, make regular retirement account contributions, have paid off your debt and still have money left over, then real estate investing through these services could be an excellent way to gain financial security.

Even real estate moguls had to start somewhere. Whether it was their first dollar in an investment fund or their first investment property, they recognized the long-understood value of owning real property. With any of these services, you may be on your way to joining the same path to real estate investment success.

DiversyFund

DiversyFund is a real estate investment platform where investors can choose to invest in specific funds or real estate investment trusts (REITs). For example, there’s the DiversyFund Growth REIT, which invests in large apartment buildings.

DiversyFund Growth REIT

The DiversyFund Growth REIT is available to any U.S. investor, not just accredited investors, with a $500 minimum investment. DiversyFund makes money as a property manager and doesn’t charge any additional fund management fees for the Growth REIT.

DiversyFund investors are co-owners on the large apartment complexes and make money from the appreciation of properties, partially aided by renovations, and the cash generated by renters. According to DiversyFund, you should plan on investing for at least five years if you put money into the DiversyFund Growth REIT. There are no quick, on-demand withdrawals.

The DiversyFund Growth REIT isn’t a forever fund. At the end of the roughly five-year period, all assets are sold and the funds are divided up among investors, ideally for a nice profit. You can choose to keep the payout or roll it over into another DiversyFund investment.

Learn more and get started at DiversyFund or read our full DiversyFund review.

Roofstock

If you would rather buy entire properties than invest through a fund, Roofstock could be a good fit for you. Roofstock offers a few ways to invest in real estate, including listings of vetted properties to buy with a specific focus on investing.

Roofstock’s listings work kind of like Zillow, but with a specific data set for investors. Those include views of estimated cap rates, gross yields, rents and neighborhood quality. The Roofstock buying process includes everything from arranging financing to putting a property manager in place. It makes getting started in property investment with up to four units simple and straightforward.

Roofstock One Plan

For a completely hands-off approach, Roofstock offers the Roofstock One investment option. With Roofstock One, you can invest in a share of a property that is fully managed by Roofstock. There are fees for this service, so be sure to read more about the costs before investing.

Learn more and get started at Roofstock.

Rocket Dollar

If you want to own real estate while enjoying the tax advantages of a retirement account, you should know about Rocket Dollar. Rocket Dollar offers a unique Self-Directed IRA where you can buy and sell assets that you can’t buy in a traditional brokerage account, including real estate and any other asset allowed by the IRS.

The Rocket Dollar Self-Direct IRA comes in two flavors: Core and Gold.

Rocket Dollar Core Plan

Core costs $360 to get started and then $15 per month. It includes your own LLC, the entity your IRA owns that allows you to buy and sell real estate in your retirement account.

Rocket Dollar Gold Plan

The Gold account, which costs $600 to start and $30 per month, comes with additional support and features. There is a Self-Directed Solo 401(k) available as well if you own your own business.

Before Rocket Dollar, buying non-traditional assets with a retirement account was extremely challenging and often very expensive. While Rocket Dollar isn’t free, it does make owning real estate in an IRA or Solo 401(k) very straightforward.

Learn more and get started at Rocket Dollar.

Fundrise

Fundrise is a fund-based real estate investment platform that offers multiple funds and investment options depending on your preferences. Core plans require a minimum $1,000 investment and divide investments between several funds with a focus on supplemental income, long-term growth or a balance of the two.

With a $10,000 minimum, you can open an advanced account that allows you to make investments in specific Fundrise funds. Those with a six-figure balance get a Premium account and added access to the Fundrise investment team. You don’t need to be an accredited investor to invest with Fundrise.

Fees start at 0.15%, which is competitive with many low-cost index funds. But instead of buying a basket of stocks, you’ll be buying into a diverse mix of properties with a goal of earning back a solid return on your investment.

Bonus: BiggerPockets

It doesn’t matter if you are doing your initial research to start investing in real estate or you are a seasoned pro with decades of experience under your belt. There’s always an opportunity to learn more and level up your real estate investing skills.

BiggerPockets is a blog, podcast, forum, publisher and network of real estate investors with a primary goal of helping you learn more and make more from investing in real estate.

You can join and learn at BiggerPockets for free. Premium accounts are available for $19 to $99 per month for pros, but newbies will do just fine with a free account. If you plan to invest directly in investment properties, rather than through funds, BiggerPockets is an essential asset.

Real Estate Is a Great Path to Long Term and Generational Wealth

Money comes and money goes, but people who build a portfolio of real estate investments often create an asset that carries them into retirement and beyond. Real estate is an excellent generational wealth tool, as it gives you the ability to gift your kids or grandkids a lifetime income.

ER

Eric Rosenberg

Eric Rosenberg is a finance, travel, and technology writer in Ventura, California. He is a former bank manager and corporate finance and accounting professional who left his day job in 2016 to take his online side hustle full-time. He has in depth experience writing about banking, credit cards, investing, business, and other financial topics. When away from the keyboard, Eric enjoys exploring the world and spending time with his wife and little girls. You can connect with him at Personal Profitability or EricRosenberg.com.