Types of Investment Properties
homes are a popular way for investors to supplement their income. An investor who purchases a residential property and rents it out to tenants can collect monthly rents. These can be single-family homes, condominiums, apartments, townhomes, or other types of residential structures.
Commercial: Income-generating properties don't always have to be residential. Some investors—especially corporations—purchase commercial properties that are used specifically for business purposes. Maintenance and improvements to these properties can be higher, but these costs can be offset by bigger returns. That's because these leases for these properties often command higher rents. These buildings may be commercially-owned apartment buildings or retail store locations.
Mixed-Use: A mixed-use property can be used simultaneously for both commercial and residential purposes. For instance, a building may have a retail storefront on the main floor such as a convenience store, bar, or restaurant, while the upper portion of the structure houses residential units.
If an investor collects rent from an investment property, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) requires him to report the rent as income, but the agency also allows him to subtract relevant expenses from this amount. For example, if a landlord collects $100,000 in rent over the course of a year but pays $20,000 in repairs, lawn maintenance, and related expenses, he reports the difference of $80,000 as self-employment income.
If an individual sells an investment property for more than the original purchase price, he has a capital gain, which must be reported to the IRS. As of 2020, capital gains on assets that are held for at least one year are considered long-term gains and taxed at 15%, except for those who are married and filing jointly and have taxable income exceeding $496,600 or single and have income exceeding $441,450. In these cases, the rate is 20%.
In contrast, if a taxpayer sells his primary residence, he only has to report capital gains in excess of $250,000 if he files individually and $500,000 if he is married and filing jointly. The capital gain on an investment property is its selling price minus its purchase price minus any major improvements.
To illustrate, imagine an investor buys a property for $100,000 and spends $20,000 installing new plumbing. A few years later, he sells the property for $200,000. After subtracting his initial investment and capital repairs, his gain is $80,000.