Should I buy an investment property now?

I’m wrestling with a decision about whether to take on another potential money making endeavor. With interest rates at all time lows and lots of inventory at exceptional prices (in some parts of the country), I am wracked with indecision. I have been turning these decisions over in my mind ever since we drove across the country and saw beautiful brand new condos for sale in the low $100Ks in the well maintained college town of Provo, Utah. Add to that the weekly emails from a real estate contact filled with screaming bargains in Arizona. And I am rattled with the “should I or shouldn’t I” pursue this possibility?

Background; My Current Obligations

My job/family responsibilities are:

  • Portfolio management job managing all the financial responsibilities and investments of my company. We are in the process of divesting many of our assets and responsibilities are diminishing.
  • College adjunct professor; teach one Investment class two times per week in a local university.
  • Blogger; Work way too many hours for minimal compensation writing and managing Barbara Friedberg Personal Finance.
  • Columnist for Benzinga.com, occasional writer for American Media Marketplace, and other sites.
  • Writer; Writing a book on personal finance which hopefully will be a raging success and bring me boatloads of cash :).
  • Spouse and mom; El Carino just took a new job which is quite demanding and I do a lot of stuff around the house. Jr. Carino is home and in transition as she plans out her next step.
  • Volunteer; Expect to give some community time in our new area.
  • Home; Still putting together and unpacking our new home from our epic cross country move. Need to cook, tidy, and exercise most days.
  • Family financial management; Responsible for all family finances, investments, and decision-making.

Some of these responsibilities yield immediate compensation, some offer delayed compensation, others offer ways to increase monetary net worth, and others offer intrinsic rewards.

How do you measure their individual value?

Google Results

A quick google search, “time v money” turned up 6.3 BILLION results. Obviously, I’m  not the only one thinking about this topic. In fact, it looks like billions of individuals are dealing with these same quandries. Think Simple Now talks about “The Greatest Tragedy Ever; Time versus Money”. In this article I am reminded about the finiteness of time as well as a unique view of indentured/working time versus free time. Although for some of us, the distinction is not as clear. Shatter the Untemplate Lifestyle by Untemplater at Yakezie.com speaks about her decisions to live life on her own terms. Wisebread’s Sarah Winfrey had another article on the Time versus Money issue with some thought provoking questions at the end. Finally, Miss T from Prairie Eco Thrifter wrote about “How to Choose a Life That Benefits the Greater Good” at Yakezie.com. As one who wants to give back more to society, this one struck a chord with me.

What Should I do?

While writing this article, I thought to myself, “I must be absolutely crazy to want to put something else on my plate!”

Something I forgot to mention, I watch television for an hour or two every night with my family and I go to bed relatively early. Realistically, if I take on  something else, I’m going to have to give something up! There are not enough hours in the day to do a decent job with all of my current obligations. And, I don’t want to give anything up. But, it’s not that simple, as I hate to pass up a potential opportunity to grow our family’s wealth.

I’m going back to the old “PROs versus CONS” worksheet to make my decision.


Get a notebook and label it: “(your name) Personal Finance” and keep it by the computer. Use it to keep all of your personal finance goals, thoughts, activities, and plans.

Faced with a big decision?

  1. Get feedback from your family.
  2. Pull out the old paper and pencil and make a Pros vs. Cons chart to help with the decision making process.

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What would you do in my situation? How have you handled these types of time versus money decisions in your own life?

image credit; Marzky


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