If you’ve experienced life as a tenant, then you probably have a negative view about being a landlord. After all, who wants to be dealing with bugs and plumbing problems and chasing up rent payments? However, that is only one unglamorous snapshot of the property business.

In fact, investing in real estate can be a lucrative avenue to explore, and if you have dreams of emulating successful entrepreneur Bharat Lall, who has a reputation for rehabilitating commercial properties, then real estate investment can be a great option. The problem for many new investors is where to start. Here are four different ways to get into investing in property.

REIT

REIT stands for Real Estate Investment Trust. A REIT makes it possible for you to invest in this area without having to hold or be responsible for the physical property. REITs are organizations that hold mainly commercial real estate, including offices, retail areas, hotels and apartments, and they can be ideal both for those who are looking for a regular income in retirement and for investors who want to reinvest their earnings.

There is a lot of variety and complexity in the REIT market. Some are traded on exchanges, while others are not publicly listed, and the kind of REIT you opt for will depend on the level of risk you are prepared to accept, as non-traded REITs are difficult to value precisely.

As a rule, it is a good idea for new investors to concentrate on publicly traded REITs, which you can buy via an online broker. All you need to do is set up an online brokerage account, and choose the REIT you are interested in, though it is worth remembering that most REITs will specify a minimum level of investment.

Online property platforms

If you’ve heard about companies such as Prosper and LendingClub, which enable connections between borrowers and lenders, then you will already have some idea about online real…