Let’s be honest:

Sometimes it feels like there are TOO MANY property investment books that we need to read to keep up with the latest trends or figure out how to grow our business. 

The good news is… most of them aren’t worth reading! 

We’ve done the hard work for you, and not only sorted the good from the bad, but also broken them down into specific categories so you can find exactly what to read next based on what you’re looking to learn about. 

AND: 

As well as the our recommendations on the best property investment books, we’re also sharing our favourite books on wider business subjects that we all need to know about as investors as well. 

Subjects like branding, finance, negotiation and productivity. 

So let’s jump in. You can check out the whole list, or use the content list below to jump to the section you’re interested in. 

While you’re here, if there’s any books you think are missing we’d love to hear about it in the comments. 

The top 5 books that every property investor should read

TL;DR?

If you’re short of time or just getting started, these are the best overall books that we think every property investor should read. 

And don’t just take our word for it. We asked thousands of investors what their favourite books were to ensure this list was as balanced as possible! 

If one of them’s missing from your collection, make sure you add it to your reading list pronto. 

Rich Dad Poor Dad: What the Rich Teach Their Kids About Money That the Poor and Middle Class Do Not!

Robert Kiyosaki

This is literally the godfather of property education books, covering some basic but eye-opening lessons about the difference between assets and liabilities; why you’ll never get rich working for someone else; and the value of learning a little about a lot (and learning from the best – keep an eye out for his time spent with Xerox). 

Whilst it won’t actually teach you much about the specifics of property investing, it’s no coincidence that hundreds of our podcast guests give it credit for starting their drive towards a life of financial freedom, or that it is consistently one of the most popular books on Amazon across every category (including fiction). 

You MUST read this book if you haven’t already.

The Complete Guide to Property Investment

Rob Dix

The book is an absolute must for anyone that is new into property. Given that we are new, it was a brilliant overview of the key concepts that you need to understand in order to be successful with buy-to-let investing. 

Naturally, the world of property is complicated and when you are new it can seem quite overwhelming. This acts as a handy starting-point to nail the basics, but we still refer to it regularly as well! 

The language that Rob uses is simple and easy to understand and everything is tackled in bite size chunks that whet your appetite to keep reading. We don’t think that the book is designed to be a one-stop shop that you will read and become 100% knowledgeable (Well, also, who is 100% knowledgeable?!) but it’s a great read that gives you an overview of the bigger picture and will help you decide which subjects you want to explore in more detail. 

Overall, the book has certainly propelled our property journey and allowed us to understand the fundamentals of some complex concepts.

Review submitted by: @samedoorproperties

Property Magic: How to Buy Property Using Other People’s Time, Money and Experience

Simon Zutshi

If you’re interested in investing in property, this book is a great read! It has lots of tips regardless of your situation – whether you have the cash to get started, no cash but plenty of time, or neither, this book can help. It talks through a lot of different strategies, so you’ll find it useful no matter what your circumstances are.

One of the key themes is the 5 Golden Rules for property investment:

  1. Buy from a motivated Seller – the best deals will be from those with a property related problem.
  2. Positive Cashflow – make sure you have monthly positive cashflow after all expenses.
  3. Only invest in an area of good rental demand – always make sure there’s good demand in the area you invest.
  4. Make sure you have a cash buffer – more important now than ever, it is key to have a cash buffer after a deal to allow for unexpected expenses, or unpredictable events.
  5. Buy for the long term.

It’s not just for beginners, it’s good to re-read every now and then too. I like that the book is constantly updated (now in its 6th edition) so it remains relevant. 

Review submitted by: @komoproperties

The E-Myth Revisited: Why Most Small Businesses Don’t Work and What to Do About It

Michael E. Gerber

Understanding the property market simply isn’t enough to become a successful property investor.  If you want to create financial freedom beyond a contribution to your pension pot, you need to treat your investing as a business.

The problem for many is that by the time we realise this, it’s when we’ve already created another job for ourselves to replace the one we were trying so hard to escape from. 

Michael E. Gerber coined the idea of ‘working on your business, rather than in it’, and having an understanding of his principles from day 1 will help you shape a business that works for you rather than the other way around.

It’s not property specific, but the lessons are applicable to any small business, and whilst you’ll benefit from reading this in the early days, it’s not too late to make some improvements if you already have an established portfolio.

Renovating for Profit

Michael Holmes

This is another fantastic read, and whilst there is some overlap in the content of Renovating for Profit and Housebuilder’s Bible (see further down the list), this one takes a more detailed look at the financial side of property investing, rather than targeting more of a self-build market.

Michael Holmes has a wealth of experience from his own investment portfolio, his two decades as a property market journalist, and, I’m sure, some help from his interior designer wife. He not only talks about what you can do to a property, but more importantly, what you should do.

We often walk into a potential property deal and decide within minutes that it would look good with new french doors, or perhaps is suitable for a loft conversion, and we then run the risk of proceeding with what is possible rather than what is most profitable.

This book explores which areas of development add the most value, which offer the best return on investment, and which may look nice in pictures but add no real value to the end product. It’s an essential read for anyone who cares about the capital side of their investments as well as the cash flow, which should be every one of us!

Book Title

Author

This is a post I’ve been wanting to write for a while. I’m an avid reader and audio-book listener, and I ask every guest on the podcast what book has inspired them and contributed most to their success – my attempt to compile a list of the top books for property investors.

I get an awful lot of repeat recommendations from my guests, and that’s surely testament to the fact that certain books grasp our attention and resonate with our mindsets more than others.

The funny thing is though, I don’t necessarily agree nor get excited about a lot of these books that crop up week in, week out. I’ve read a lot of them, enjoyed most of them, but there are (in my humble opinion) other books which deliver more actionable ideas and more original insights.

So think of this more like an alternative list, once you’ve exhausted Secrets of the Millionaire Mind, Think & Grow Rich, and The One Thing.

top books for property investors
Some of my ‘alternative’ books for property investors.

You’ll notice the following list doesn’t contain many property specific books. There are a few reasons for that.  Firstly, a lot of the books on specific investing strategies come under the repeat recommendations, so don’t need covered here again. Secondly, and perhaps more importantly, I think a lot of the skills required in running a property business are the same skills required in running any business, so I tend to focus my education more on the areas of attracting customers (investors and tenants in my case), negotiation, time management etc.

In no particular order, here are my own favourite books for property investors, once you’ve exhausted the classics…

Money: Master The Game – Tony Robbins

Possibly the most recent book on my list, this will quickly become a classic in overall financial planning. It covers some property specific topics and shares some fascinating insights into things like the benefits of mortgage overpayments, which has ultimately changed my view on leverage and interest only mortgages.

The main focus of the book however extolls the virtues of a mixed financial portfolio, and goes into great detail about different investment options based on interviews with some of the best financial experts in the world. There’s definitely a bit of an American slant on some of the advice given, but for anyone who aspires to achieve more than a job as a full time landlord, this book is a solid education in how we can look to diversify our investment income and protect our net worth.

Tony makes a potentially dry subject extremely engaging and will open your eyes to the importance of an investment strategy beyond property. View this book on Amazon.

Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion – Robert Cialdini

I first came across this book whilst studying a negotiation class at university, and have gone back to revisit it many times since. I don’t think it’s any coincidence that the author is a professor of both social psychology and marketing, showing how closely connected these two fields are, and the importance of understanding human behaviour if we want to understand how to market effectively to our customers.

That connection between psychology and marketing isn’t the main appeal of this book though. It’s a great combination of theory and case studies that explore why people say yes, how we can increase the likelihood of people saying yes to us, and how we can understand when people are deploying the same tactics against us.

When you think of the value that getting more ‘yeses’ would create for you, whether that’s from vendors, estate agents, investors, contractors or any number of requests you make on a daily basis as a property investor, you can start to see the value that this book can bring to your investing success. View this book on Amazon.

Getting Things Done – David Allen

We all have the same number of hours in the day. What sets the successful apart from the rest of us is the ability to get more done in that same amount of time.  Whilst I believe we should work hard AS WELL AS smart if we want to achieve real success, putting in the extra hours is wasted if it’s not deployed against the right tasks.

David Allen’s book on productivity and time management starts with a seemingly simple task – ‘download’ everything that you need to get done onto a list. Projects, tasks, professional items, personal items, random errands, major goals and 2 minute quick wins. This step alone is enough to help you sleep better at night and give you an immediate sense of control over your workload, but it’s only the first step.

The rest of the book goes on to sort, process and prioritise your life, giving you a work flow for dealing with your existing work load and how to fit in the multitude of new tasks that crop up on a daily basis. If you feel there’s any room for improvement in your personal productivity, this is the help you need. View this book on Amazon.

Delivering Happiness  – Tony Hsieh

One thing that I think us as landlords and property investors are extremely guilty of, is forgetting who our customers are. More often than not, the people putting money in our pockets are our single let tenants, HMO house mates, or serviced accommodation guests. Yet a quick browse through some of the Facebook groups would have you believe our lives would be so much better without them.

Tony Hsieh built his online shoe business into one of the world’s biggest retailers by having customer service at the heart of every company decision, rather than it just being the responsibility of a single department. His call centre staff are rewarded for having long conversations with customers, rather than for how many calls they can get through. Most orders are upgraded to overnight delivery for free, and they offered (and actively encourage) free returns long before many other retailers jumped on this trend.

Every decision they make is based on making their customers happy, and as a result they built a billion dollar company in only 10 years before selling to Amazon.  I’m convinced that a more customer centric approach to your property investing will lead to incalculable rewards, and Tony Hsieh will certainly get your creative customer service ideas flowing. View this book on Amazon.

Setting the Table – Danny Meyer

On a similar vein to Delivering Happiness, Setting the Table is written by another successful entrepreneur who puts customers at the centre of his business. Danny Meyer is a renowned restauranteur with an amazing success record in one of the world’s toughest food markets – New York City.

Like Hsieh, Meyer puts the customer experience (and his employee experience) above all other priorities, and in an extremely crowded market place, he’s been able to set himself apart. There are great lessons throughout the book which can be applied to any industry, as well as real life anecdotes of ‘enlightened hospitality’ in practice – like the story about a spilled glass of wine!

We’re operating in a competitive market place (and yes, I appreciate there’s a housing shortage and everyone needs somewhere to live, but everyone also needs to eat and that doesn’t stop some places thriving whilst others disappear), and we have a choice. We can create another magnolia box and treat our customers as replaceable, or we can create a business and a brand to be proud of. The funny thing is, that extra effort is always rewarded with far great returns than the investment it requires. View this book on Amazon.

Small Giants – Bo Burlingham

My final ‘customer service’ book is the one that first got me excited about this whole area of business. Bo Burlingham explores some of the more interesting businesses in USA – ones that choose to follow their passion rather than profit. That passion could be to create the best quality products, deliver the best service, create the best environment for their employees, or have the biggest impact on their local communities.

I often say during my interviews that the best ideas in the property world come from outside the property world, and as with the previous two suggestions, this book will open your eyes and your mind to an abundance of different approaches you can use to differentiate yourself and your business, rather than making short term, profit focussed decisions.

And again, as with the previous two books, one of the key takeaways from Small Giants is that the companies who take a ‘profit second’ approach often end up with more profits in the long run than those who only care about the bottom line. View this book on Amazon.

Housebuilder’s Bible -Mark Brinkley

I said this was a list of books for property investors, rather than a list of books about property investing, but there are two books (manuals is probably a more appropriate term) that cover property specific topics that I feel we should all have on our book case.

Housebuilder’s Bible edition 1 may be almost as old as me, but with revised editions released every 2 years, this is an always up to date guide on the processes of managing a new build project. It covers (at great length) topics such as material planning, work scheduling, employing contractors, and avoiding the pitfalls that most new build developments face.

And whilst the book’s title suggests it deals with house building (which of course it does), it’s a useful guide to help you through small renovation and development projects as well. View this book on Amazon.

Renovating for Profit – Michael Holmes

This is another fantastic read, and whilst there is some overlap in the content of Renovating for Profit and Housebuilder’s Bible, this takes a more detailed look at the financial side of property investing, rather than targeting more of a self-build market.

Holmes has a wealth of experience from his own investment portfolio, his two decades as a property market journalist, and, I’m sure, some help from his interior designer wife. He not only talks about what you can do to a property, but more importantly, what you should do.

We often walk into a potential property deal and decide within minutes that it would look good with new french doors, or perhaps is suitable for a loft conversion, and we then run the risk of proceeding with what is possible rather than what is most profitable.

This book explores which areas of development add the most value, which offer the best return on investment, and which may look nice in pictures but add no real value to the end product. It’s an essential read for anyone who cares about the capital side of their investments as well as the cash flow, which should be every one of us! View this book on Amazon.

SHARE THIS POST :

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Looking For Something?

How's your time management?

Check the Personal Productivity Masterclass for Property Investors!

Days
Hrs
Mins
Secs

HOW'S YOUR TIME MANAGEMENT?

Check the Personal Productivity Masterclass for Property Investors!

Days
Hours
Minutes
Seconds