Building Your Real Estate Portfolio Budget

Any successful commercial real estate owner will tell you a real estate portfolio budget is absolutely essential for scaling your investments. Not only does a budget help you understand how much you make and spend each month, it can help you plan improvements to your properties to increase revenue in the future. It can also reveal when you are ready to make your next property investment.

If you’re just starting to build your real estate portfolio budget or your current budget needs an update, here are a few tips from the commercial real estate professionals at Clarity Commercial.

Establish Your Portfolio’s Goals

Your budget is about more than numbers. It’s a vehicle to help you achieve your goals. Before you create your portfolio budget, consider what your 1-year, 3-year, and 5-year goals are. Do you want to increase revenue by 15 percent? Complete a major renovation? Purchase a new property? Whatever your goals are, you want to build your budget to meet them.

Start with Your Expenses

Take some time to gather and list all of the expenses associated with your properties, then include them in your real estate portfolio budget. Include maintenance, repairs, management, legal, staff, utilities, mortgages, and insurance costs. Don’t forget to calculate your vacancy costs as expenses, either. Vacant spaces cost you money each month and filling them should be your top priority.

Then Establish Your Revenue Targets

Once you have a grasp on your monthly expenses, you will have an idea of the amount of revenue you must bring in each month to break even or make a profit. If your current portfolio is covering your expenses, great! What else could you do to maximize revenue? If your current portfolio does not cover your expenses, work with a property management company to work out a plan for getting back into the black.

Put Your Profit to Work

If your portfolio is making a profit each month, think about how you want to reinvest that profit back into your portfolio. Are there capital improvements you need to make to your existing properties to attract future tenants? Perhaps there is a property you’d like to add to your portfolio. Your budget can help you forecast these future expenses and manage your profit so you’ll have the funds to achieve your goals.

If creating a budget for your real estate portfolio sounds intimidating, get in touch with Clarity Commercial. We’re experts in commercial real estate budgeting and forecasting. We can help you get a grasp on your expenses and revenue and plan for future investments. Contact us to learn how we can help you.

Building a Realistic Budget Projection for Your Commercial Properties

A Note on COVID-19

The Clarity Commercial team is watching the COVID-19 pandemic closely and is following all guidelines from the CDC and the State of Minnesota. Our team is stepping up hand hygiene and practicing social distancing to help slow down the spread of the virus and ensure we are healthy and able to serve you and your properties through the pandemic.

You have a portfolio of properties, but do you have a sense of the income you generate from these properties over the course of a month or a year? How about your expenses? If an unforeseen expense pops up at your property, can your budget handle it? A budget projection answers all of these questions and helps you maintain a healthy and successful commercial property portfolio.

How Budget Projections Help You Manage Your Commercial Properties

Creating a budget projection for your portfolio of properties will help you work toward your financial goals. Most property owners have a sense of the revenue their properties bring in as well as the monthly cost to manage those properties. A budget projection puts concrete numbers to every income stream and expense over a 12-month period. Not only does this give you a more accurate understanding of the health of your portfolio, it provides milestones for you to hit as you work toward your financial goals.

Budget projections help you anticipate and mitigate problems that may arise later in the year. You can use the data from current and past months to manage loss of income or extra expenses down the road. Your budget projection may help you identify the best time to complete a building improvement or step up your marketing.

Use a Current Year or Rolling 12-Month Budget Projection

Budget projections should cover a 12-month period. Some property owners choose to project over a calendar or fiscal year (January to December or July to June, for example), while others choose to use a rolling 12-month model. Use your leasing calendar to decide which model will work best for you. Whatever model you choose, update the data monthly so you have a clear idea of the health of your portfolio and your projections stay accurate and realistic.

Include a Cash Forecast

A cash forecast is one element of a budget projection. Rather than income, a cash forecast projects your portfolio’s cash flow. Cash forecasts are extremely helpful in budgeting for maintenance, improvements, and unforeseen expenses. Some property owners break down cash forecasts weekly rather than monthly for an accurate look at cash flow for a particular month.

Consider Adding a 3- to 5-Year Outlook

While budget projections are most useful if they look at 12-month period, it can be helpful to use your budget projections to forecast a three- to five-year outlook. While you can’t predict the future, you can take an educated guess at your portfolio’s outlook based on past performance, market trends, and the strength of the economy. Thinking three to five years ahead can help you plan strategically and develop long-term financial goals for your portfolio.

Budget projections are an essential part of managing a successful commercial property portfolio. Clarity Commercial can help you put together a projection that helps you understand your revenue streams, expenses, and make a plan for future growth.

For help creating a budget projection for your portfolio, contact Clarity Commercial today.