Residential Vs. Commercial Property Investments

Making decisions on investment between commercial and residential property is not easy and cannot be done right away. Both have their pros and cons. The selection of an investment is based on the tolerance of risk, objectives, time, and liquid capital.
Technical variations
  • Residential property is generally 1-4 unit rentals and single-family residences like duplexes, condos, quadruplexes, etc. While a commercial real estate is 5 or over units like industrial, office, multifamily, retail, hotel and other special buildings. The tenant types are individuals and families for a residential property, whereas business seekers for a commercial real estate.
  • A commercial property awards its investors to a bigger range of potential investments, while residential property provides its investors a more focused role in the real estate.


Higher returns-Cash flow is attractive and fetching here. More tenants and bigger businesses offer higher returns here. It is very good for a person inviting a diverse portfolio. The returns or cash flow is not as big for residential properties by Malik Ali Riaz.

Tenants- Since the tenants are generally corporations, businesses, and organizations, they are supported by a larger company. Hence, they are qualified to keep the property intact and respectfully. In residential real estate, single families or groups of individuals are tenants who may or may not be qualified and respectful to your property.

Net lease- Triple net lease managed all expenses of property directly, and hence it is easier and trustworthy to maintain costs here. The lease is different for residential properties, and maintenance costs are more on the buyer.

Longer lease- There are terms for long lease like 5-10 years, unlike residential properties that range from 6-12 months. This also means vacancy time and rates are lower with commercial properties. It also means cash flow and reliability. However, there is more legality involved in commercial real estate.

Convenient in value of increase- Residential properties are comparable, but the commercial is more on the revenue generation. With good tenants, there is a value in increase at a quicker rate in commercial real estate as compared to residential properties.

Entry costs- Investment costs are lesser for a residential property as compared to a commercial property. Though a loan can be procured as a newbie as well, the down payment is large enough for an average person.

Lowered tenant turnover- For single families, tenant turnover need not be dealt with frequently. Finding tenants is harder for commercial properties than in residential properties.

Laws- Rules are more lenient and small-scaled in residential real estate than in commercial investments.

Renter pool- There are more potential buyers and tenants for the residential property than a commercial property as it is more for an organization or a business.

Economy- A residential property is also not that impacted by the ups and downs of the market. However, commercial rental can significantly impact a declining economy.

To choose between residential and commercial real estate investments is a tough choice and also based on your needs. Both of them come with a set of advantages and disadvantages. Both investments can achieve your freedom goals to finances by tax benefits and cash returns. Ali Riaz Malik is the chief executive officer of the famous Bahria Town.

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