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Roofstock review

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Invest in single-family properties that are already generating rental income.

Roofstock is an online marketplace that allows users to invest in single-family rental properties. The occupied properties are vetted according to strict criteria, removing the work involved in finding, buying and managing a rental property yourself. However, it requires a lot of capital and you may find a wider selection working with a broker.

$20,000

Minimum deposit to open

Details

Intro or bonus offerRoofstock offers a 30-day money back guarantee. Plus, if you purchase a vacant home, Roofstock will pay rent equal to 90% of market value for up to 12 months. Terms and conditions apply
Minimum deposit to open$20,000
Available asset typesReal estate

What is Roofstock?

Roofstock is a fairly new company that launched in 2015. It was the first online marketplace designed exclusively for investments in single-family rental properties and has since generated over $1 billion in completed transactions.

How does Roofstock work?

Here’s how Roofstock works:

  1. Profile. Create an investor profile or speak with an adviser to develop a strategy.
  2. Search. Browse through a selection of pre-screened, exclusive listings or set up custom filters to browse properties that meet your standards.
  3. Analyze. View details, pictures, lease and tenant information and use calculators and other tools to determine if a property is right for you.
  4. Buy. You can negotiate or make an offer for free. You’ll only pay the 0.5% marketplace fee or $500 when your offer is accepted and collect 2.5% from the seller as a commission.
  5. Close. Roofstock‘s transaction team will walk you through closing, lending, escrow, insurance and property management. Closing generally takes 15 days if you pay cash or 30 if you’re financing.
  6. Earn. Whether you use your own property manager or one of Roofstock’s, you’ll start collecting rental income as soon as you close. Plus, you’ll get continued support from Roofstock.

What is Roofstock One?

Roofstock One is a separate platform where users can invest in shares of rental houses. It has much lower capital requirements and allows investors to earn passive income without the responsibilities of ownership. But it’s only available to accredited investors.

Who is Roofstock best for?

Just like any other real estate investment, Roofstock requires a substantial amount of upfront capital, making it best for:

  • Experienced investors. This service is a better fit for experienced investors who want to diversify their portfolio.
  • Long-term investors. Real estate is an illiquid investment that’s best suited for investors who want to earn passive income over the course of many years.
  • Hands-on investors. Unlike stocks, bonds and other investments, rental properties require work, even if you have a property manager. Roofstock is best for investors who have the time and money to maintain rental properties.

What are the benefits of Roofstock?

You don’t have to be an accredited investor to take advantage of Roofstock’s perks:

  • Screening process. Instead of spending time researching for the right house, properties are thoroughly screened and listings are extremely detailed.
  • Low fees. Once your offer is accepted, you’ll only pay a 0.5% marketplace fee of the contract price or $500, whichever is higher.
  • Hassle-free. Most properties are already occupied by paying tenants, so there’s no legal work and you can insure and finance your home directly through the website.
  • Guarantees. Roofstockoffers a 30-day money back guarantee if you’re not satisfied with your purchase as long as it meets its terms and conditions. Plus, if you purchase a vacant home, Roofstock will pay rent equal to 90% of market value for up to 12 months.

What to watch out for

Despite its strengths, there are a few things you should consider before opening an account with Roofstock:

  • Large upfront capital. You’ll need to invest at least $20,000 if you’re financing a property or $55,000 if you’re paying in cash.
  • Few markets. Roofstock only has properties in 21 states — some states have markets in multiple cities and others may only have a market in one.
  • Lengthy onboarding for sellers. Sellers go through a longer onboarding and verification process to ensure their property is a good fit.
  • Online only. While Roofstock has accessible customer service and one physical office, you can’t visit a traditional broker or agent to do business in person.
  • Guarantee conditions. You’ll need to meet the following requirements to take advantage of the money back and rent guarantees:
      • Money back: To relist your property you must meet Roofstock certification standards and you’ll need to maintain the property until it sells.
      • Rent: You must work with an eligible preferred property manager and payments will begin 45 days after your property is rent-ready.
  • Limited selection. Since listings are exclusive to Roofstock, there’s a smaller selection than you’d find when working with a broker/agent or MLS.

Compare with other real estate investing platforms

Name Product Minimum deposit to open Available asset types Annual fee
$1,000
Real estate
2%
stREITwise is an online real estate investing company that combines innovative technology and new federal regulations.
$1,000
Real estate
0.25%

1%
PeerStreet is a marketplace that provides access to high-quality real estate loan investments, but you have to be an accredited investor.
$500
Real estate
0.85%
Invest in commercial and residential REITs with as little as $500, but watch out for hidden costs.
$5,000
Real estate
1%
Invest directly in commercial real estate through this crowdfunding platform. ut you’ll pay variable fees depending on the investment type.

Compare up to 4 providers

How do I sign up?

Get started online in four simple steps:

  1. Visit Roofstock’s website and click Sign up.
  2. Fill out your personal information and click Sign up or sign up with Google or Facebook.
  3. Build your investor profile or Skip to build it later.
  4. Review your profile and then scroll down and click View All Properties to start your search.

Required information

During your application, you’ll need to provide the following information:

  • First and last name
  • Phone number and email
  • Investment and financial information

Roofstock reviews and complaints

The company isn’t listed on the Better Business Bureau or Trustpilot but the few customer reviews online are overwhelmingly positive. While there are some negative reviews regarding transaction issues, Roofstock quickly clarified and resolved the problems.

How do I contact Roofstock customer service?

There are three ways to get in touch with customer service:

  • Live chat: Use the feature on the website to schedule an appointment.
  • Phone: Call 800-466-4116.
  • Email: support@roofstock.com

I’m ready to start using Roofstock. Now what?

Now that you’ve signed up, here’s how you can get the most out of the platform:

  • Set up your profile. Fill out your investor profile to create an investment strategy that aligns with your financial situation and goals.
  • Investor checklist. Go through the investor checklist to ensure you’re ready to start investing.
  • Set up filters and alerts. Create filters and watch lists to find ideal properties.
  • Speak with a Roofstock adviser. Set up a phone call or live chat to discuss your investment strategy or ask questions.
  • Start investing. Make an offer or buy a property.
  • Roofstock property manager. While you’re free to manage properties yourself or hire a third party, Roofstock has certified property managers that can take care of everything.

Bottom line

Roofstock connects buyers and sellers of rental properties to make real estate investing more transparent. Properties go through a strict screening process and most are already occupied by reliable tenants so that you can start generating income sooner.

However, it operates entirely online, which might not be ideal for some users considering the $20,000 minimum investment. Not sure if it’s right for you? Compare other investment options to find one that is.

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