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The Best Way To Invest $100K For Income

Where is one risk-free place you can guarantee you’ll always find money, cash flow, and high returns?

The dictionary. But if you’re looking for a more pragmatic way to grow your wealth, you’ll need to conduct some research and employ strategic thinking to get the ball rolling. Making smart investment decisions demands tactics, due diligence, and adequate planning.

Safely investing your 100k for maximum returns requires you to consider some salient questions, including what kind of market offers the best investment opportunities for your goals? Which markets match your risk tolerance?

Here at Pinto Capital Investments, we are here to help answer the tough questions and help you make the right decision for you and your family based on your risk tolerance and financial goals. We have carried out intensive research and uncovered the best ways you can invest your $100k for income. We’ve included their varying degrees of risk and opportunity so you can make a sound and informed choice for yourself.

Before We Dive In…

We mentioned strategic thinking and sufficient planning, right? Well, it is probably a safe bet to assume that you haven’t landed on this article because you plan to blindly throw your money at the first shiny object that presents itself to you.

Frankly, it’s a better start than many. It is prudent to start by asking some rudimentary questions to establish a foundation from which you can start investing wisely and achieve the outcomes you want.

What Are Your Financial And Personal Goals?

If you’re investing to make income, it’s not that difficult – the most basic savings accounts will offer a small amount of interest, then you start earning straight away. But if you’re investing to make lots of income, we have to dig a little deeper.

How much money do you want to make? Are you interested in cash flow to supplement or even replace your day job, capital appreciation to build long term, generational wealth, or both? Keeping a specific goal in mind to work steadily towards will help determine the best way to invest $100k for income and encourage you to stay on track throughout your journey.

What Is Your Investment Term?

Your investment strategy – and to some degree risk tolerance – will be influenced by the term you want to invest your money. Determine a date you’d like to liquidate or finalize your investment, then create a series of milestones moving backward from that point.

Here’s how investment terms are usually segregated:

  • Short term: Assets held for less than one year
  • Mid-term: Investments held between one and ten years
  • Long-term: Investments held for 10+ years

There are investment strategies that operate well over the long term and those that perform better in the short term. Consider it this way: a 60-year-old and a 20-year-old both investing for their retirement will have completely different investment terms. The former may be five years, while the latter could be up to 50 years. It’s highly unlikely both investors would obtain optimal returns on their investment by executing the same strategy. As you consider the best way to invest $100k for income, think about how long your money will be tied up.

What Is Your Risk Tolerance?

Your risk tolerance is determined by how well you can absorb the financial loss in your investment versus how much you stand to gain. How much risk an investor is willing to undertake is entirely dependent on the person investing. For instance, would you be willing to risk losing 15% of your investment in a situation where you equally stand to gain 15%? How about 50%?

The adage ‘high risk, high reward’ is rather adept as generally, viable high-risk investments carry opportunities to produce high returns too. Similarly, low-risk investments tend to generate lower returns and focus instead on capital preservation. Most investment vehicles ebb and flow over time, so if your investment term is long (say 20+ years), you may be able to withstand a temporary loss in a higher-risk investment by averaging out your returns with better gains over the long term.

Don’t be shy about contacting financial advisors who can create a risk profile for you and let you know your approximate risk tolerance.

Are You An Active Or Passive Investor?

When you picture yourself as a successful $100k investor, are you busily running errands, making phone calls, and staring at intricate graphs all day, or are you sipping cocktails somewhere off the Galapagos Islands?

In other words, how much continued time and energy do you want to put into making your investment successful? Some people like to get their hands dirty and retain full control of operations (active investing), while others want to create cash flow on the side and hear nothing more of it (passive investing). This article will point to active and passive strategies so you can pick an approach that works well with your lifestyle.

Investment Housekeeping

While potentially investing in a housekeeping business may be one way to invest $100,000 for income, that’s not what we’re talking about here. Zooming into your present reality, you either have $100k you want to invest or expect to have $100k soon. There is one thing every smart investor must do to ensure the long-term success of their projects: get their finances in order.

This small phrase will mean different things to different people, but here are two suggestions we guarantee will improve your financial environment so your investments thrive.

Clear High-Interest Debt

Any high-interest debt obligation you own is costing you money. While your investment earns extra income, high-interest debt will be sucking the life out of those gains. Even if you can’t clear debt all in one go, try and reduce it to something manageable. Generally, a slightly lower investment amount and reduced costly debt will serve you better over the long term than the other way around.

High-interest debt may be anything from student loan debt, personal loans, credit card debt, and a range of other colorful, costly burdens.

Keep Some Savings For a Rainy Day

piggy bank

That’s right, we’re talking about creating an emergency fund. If there’s anything the global pandemic has taught us, it’s that you never know when you might lose your job and desperately need reserves to pull you through hardship.

Save yourself the strife of navigating out of tight spots by ensuring you have a little cash put away for emergencies like an unexpected car repair, natural disaster, lost job or medical expense. Your emergency fund should cover your family’s living expenses like housing, bills, food, and transport, for anywhere between a few weeks to a few months.

So now we’ve got the prep work out of the way, let’s jump into some solid investment strategies to get your earning income off your $100k!

Real Estate

Investors love real estate, that’s why it’s first on the list. Real estate assets have consistently and historically been the highest return and safest investment vehicles. While markets swing and shift occasionally, they don’t carry the same volatility as the stock market. Plus, investing in real estate is so dynamic you’re sure to find a method that suits your goals, term, risk tolerance, and activity level.

Here are a few more reasons why we love real estate investing:

  • Cash FlowEveryone needs a safe place to live, but not everyone can afford to purchase a house. Because of this, the rental market exists, providing real estate investors with the opportunity to create additional cash flow from their investment via rental yield.
  • Capital Appreciation – Real estate assets tend to increase in value over time. This is how the $20k house your grandparents purchased in their 20s is now worth $350k. As you pay off a mortgage, you gain equity or ownership in the real estate asset, which (as a general rule) increases in value over the long term. Getting more money for free could not be more conceptually simple.
  • Diversification – Real estate is not correlated to the stock markets, meaning that when your stocks, mutual funds, or savings account investments take a hit, your capital tied up in real estate will not be affected in the same way. Diversifying your investment portfolio helps protect you from overall risk by owning a real, physical asset.
  • Tax Benefits – Real estate can offer tax advantages in multiple ways. Your rental income gets taxed differently from your regular earnings, plus real estate depreciates (loses paper value over time from wear and tear) which, in many cases, you can claim back from the tax man.

So let’s look at a few ways to invest in real estate and earn that side income!

Real Estate Syndication

Real estate syndication is a relatively modern investment mechanism. As an individual investor, you pool your capital together with other investors. The money then gets professionally invested (by a sponsor or professional partner) into the construction, development, or management of an income-producing commercial real estate or multifamily investment.

Commercial and multifamily syndication offers investors the opportunity to invest in a highly-profitable asset class most individuals don’t have the financial muscle to enter into on their own. It’s a great investment in the mid to long-term as your money tends to be illiquid during the venture.

Syndication is a passive method of investing (unless you’re sponsoring the deal yourself), which doesn’t require any knowledge, skills, or experience to get started. If the idea of earning regular quarterly or monthly dividends, accessing tax benefits, and experiencing capital appreciation without lifting a finger sounds like your ideal investment opportunity, get in touch with Pinto Capital Investments. We’re an experienced private investment firm dedicated to investing in highly profitable commercial property with partners just like you.

Invest in a Rental Property

Hitting the rental property market is another effective way to invest $100,000 for income. While it’s unlikely you will purchase an investment property in this market outright in cash, $100k may be sufficient to cover a modest down-payment plus a small cash injection to ensure the property is suitable for renting out to tenants.

Rental property investments are active since the scope of a landlord’s responsibilities is broad and varied. For a start, you’ll need to find a well-structured and tidy home in a prime location to make it more enticing to renters. The property may or may not be in need of renovations before you can place tenants, which is extra time and money upfront. Then you must solicit tenants, create lease contracts, and manage the maintenance and repairs of the property. It’s possible to hire a third-party property management company if you prefer a hands-off role, though this will cut into your profit margin.

To purchase a rental property, most investors need to seek financing. Ideally, the rental yield will cover monthly mortgage payments, leaving some to spare that you can enjoy as monthly income. Typically rental property investments are best suited for the mid to long-term, considering the time it takes to clear mortgage debt and the long-term advantages of tax deductions and appreciation.

However, there are significant risks involved. First, the investor needs to be able to qualify for a mortgage or seek low-interest personal finance options. If the property is vacant, you will be left paying for your investment for the vacancy period. Additionally, while local gentrification can make properties and neighborhoods more appealing and, in turn, higher value, the opposite is also true. If the area you buy in is neglected or degenerates over the long term, the value of your property risks decreasing.

Real Estate Investment Trust

Real estate investment trusts, also known as REITs, are another passive investment vehicle that offers diversification benefits to your portfolio. Similar to syndication, REITs offer investors the opportunity to invest in real estate asset class without owning the actual property. Instead, individuals own shares in a trust that operates and manages a collection of income-producing real estate properties (equity REITS) or mortgages (debt REITs).

REITs get publicly traded on the stock exchange, which means two things: first, they are vulnerable to the same volatility as stocks, and second, it’s relatively simple to open an account with a broker and purchase offerings. Unlike physical real estate assets, REITs are highly liquid. Real estate investment trusts are obliged by law to distribute 90% of their profits to investors to retain their status as an investment trust which inhibits their potential for growth over the long term compared with other investment vehicles. Additionally, unlike many other real estate investments, REIT investors pay regular income taxes on their dividends, meaning they do not receive additional tax benefits from real estate.

If you’re looking for high returns, this option does have the potential to deliver. Though, as we mentioned earlier, this comes hand in hand with an increased risk factor. As a passive investment strategy, investors have little control over their investment returns or performance. For the most competitive returns, it’s advisable to get into REITs over the long term.

Taxable Investments

House Investment

Taxable investments can be a popular place to invest $100k for income. They come in a variety of investment vehicles with varying degrees of risk, return potential, and involvement, such as stocks, mutual funds, and exchange-traded funds.

Investors pay tax on their money when they invest, meaning that once you withdraw funds, you’re not required to pay tax on the principal. Capital gains taxes and earnings are considered taxable income. Here are a few ways you can get started.


When you invest in stocks, you purchase ownership shares in a particular company. Generally, those who trade stocks seek up-and-coming corporate unicorns such as Apple or Google, whose share value will spike with increased corporate activity.

Unfortunately, it’s not always easy to predict who will succeed and who will flop in the early stages of a company’s lifecycle. Stock investors need to be adept at equity and technical analysis and well versed in the companies they have selected to invest in. Stock market investing is time-consuming if you’re learning because you will have to actively manage your portfolio of stocks on your own to get the best results.

The stock market has the potential for high returns and carries significant risk. Extreme volatility is not unheard of (even up to 20% in a short time frame), so the most important consideration here is whether an investor has the time and knowledge to invest wisely and the risk tolerance to sustain potential losses. Due to market volatility, the investment term for stocks tends to be long-term to allow recovery from market fluctuations.

To get started, an investor must perform intensive research on the markets and companies they are interested in, open up an online brokerage account, and purchase the stocks of their choice.

Mutual Funds

Mutual funds pool investor money to purchase packages of securities such as stocks, bonds, or a combination of the two. The mutual fund’s portfolio gets actively managed by a professional fund manager who decides which blend of securities goes in the fund. This professional input makes mutual funds a nice in-between for investors interested in stocks who don’t have the time to research individual companies. Accordingly, some actively managed funds come with high fees for profile management.

Mutual funds invest in a collection of different companies, and as a result, they carry instant diversification benefits, contributing to a reduction in the overall risk of your portfolio. Mutual funds are less risky than investing in individual stocks, however, they all carry some degree of risk depending on the particulars of each fund.

You can invest via an online platform or via an intermediary broker. It’s relatively simple to set up an account and select which fund or combination of funds to invest in. This investment is considered liquid since you can sell your shares and receive your money in days. Typically though, investors get the most out of mutual fund investments over the long term.

Exchange-Traded Funds

Exchange-traded funds (ETFs) are similar to mutual funds, though they get traded freely on the stock market. Investors can select from funds relating to an economic sector (such as tech or healthcare), certain types of companies, or securities such as bonds.

Unlike mutual funds, ETFs get passively managed, and prices can fluctuate throughout the day. Due to the passive nature of the strategy, ETF investments commonly (but not always) carry lower fees than mutual funds.

If you’re looking for a short-term investment, ETFs may be more effective than mutual funds or stocks. However, they tend to perform better over the long term. Similar to mutuals and stocks, simply open a brokerage account, select your ETF investment, then you’re ready to invest!

Open a Savings Account

For any number of reasons, an investor may need to store their money somewhere safe rather than investing directly and immediately. Opening a savings account is highly liquid if you know when you’ll need to access it in the future, and it’s also one of the safest investments available. The catch is that your short and long-term returns are among the lowest. In some cases, the interest you earn won’t even keep up with inflation. This strategy is more effective at preserving your capital than making income.

High Yield Savings Account

High-yield savings accounts are much more profitable than a normal savings account, so they’re a great place to let your money rest until you’re ready to invest in more lucrative ventures.

Typically the fees for a savings account are minimal, and you can easily manage your money with an online account. Many high-yield savings accounts are Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) insured, meaning that if the bank goes out of business, the FDIC will recover your money up to $250k per depositor.

Certain high-yield accounts require you to sign your money up for a set period of time, while others make your cash more easily accessible. It’s common for banks and credit unions to impose withdrawal limits and fees. This is a great place to store your money if you’re not yet sure where to invest, however, high-yield savings accounts are not the most efficient way to invest $100k for income over the long term.

Money Market Account


A money market account (MMA) is another type of savings account you can easily open at a bank or credit union. Typically an MMA will offer higher interest rates than a savings account, and they tend to offer account holders the benefits of a checking account, including debit cards and check-writing capabilities.

MMAs require a minimum investment amount, which needs to be maintained to a minimum value while the account is active. Should the account value fall short of minimum requirements, your bank may slap on a service fee.

While this can be a great option for earning higher interest than a savings account for a short period while you plan to invest your $100k, this is not an efficient choice for a long-term investment or making income.

Invest In A Business

Many would argue that purchasing an existing business or launching one on your own is a great way to invest $100,000 for income. Depending on how you structure the investment, you could become a silent partner and make passive income, or you could be fully involved, actively managing the whole process, exerting total control over your investment and outcomes.

There are two ways to roll into the entrepreneurial lifestyle: purchase a business that already exists or start your own.

Invest In An Existing Business

Working for someone else, you know how much income you can expect to earn. When you’re an entrepreneur, the sky is the limit! It’s relatively easy to search for businesses for sale that you can then look at investing in.

With $100k, you’ll be able to purchase some existing businesses outright, and in other cases, you’ll be able to become a partner by investing your money into the business. This means you can choose whether you actively manage the business yourself. Alternatively, you could hire a manager to take care of the business and enjoy passive income as the owner.

Buying a business is not a particularly liquid investment, but it will give you a steady stream of cash on the side if it’s managed effectively. You have plenty of space to increase profit by making the business more productive or reducing expenses. Similarly, purchasing a business is more of a mid-long term strategy.

There is a significant amount of risk involved in buying a business. Investors can make a lot, and they also risk losing everything. You’ll want to do solid due diligence on the business before investing and ensure you have the knowledge and skills to manage a business.

Jump Start Your Own Business

Another great way to build income streams from your $100k is to invest in yourself! If you have a passion project or set of skills that can add value to your community, why not start a business of your own? These days it’s becoming increasingly easy to set up an online store or educational platform that could even earn you passive income once you’re set up.

A business can be a time-consuming endeavor that requires savvy and know-how to get going plus continued temporal and energetic investment. Most businesses take about two years to get off the ground, so ensure you have the space available in your schedule to invest in making it worthwhile.

Launching a successful business can be lucrative – there are zero limits to your potential returns. Equally, it carries significant risk, so it’s wise to consult with the experts and have a thorough business plan before you begin. Businesses are usually the most profitable in the mid-long term, and once your money is tied up it’s illiquid for that period. If you’re committed, this can be a highly rewarding and even life-changing experience.

Private Money Lending

Private money lending, or peer-to-peer lending, is another way to invest your money and earn an income. There are two ways to approach it: either you use an established online platform to privately lend money to approved members or lend your money to someone in your close circle. Either way, you receive income in the form of interest.

By opting for an organized online platform, you will have less control over your interest rates and may have to pay platform management fees. The advantage is that you can break your $100k into bite-sized loans to easily diversify your risk.

On the other hand, if you choose to lend to family or friends, you have more flexibility to negotiate terms, such as interest rates and repayment schedules. This can often work out in favor of both parties.

Privately lending money to others is typically a passive and illiquid investment that can often earn you returns between 5-10%. The risk involved is that individuals may not meet interest or repayment requirements, so it pays to perform thorough due diligence on anybody you’re considering lending to.

Final Thoughts

If you’re seeking the best way to invest $100k for income, one thing is abundantly clear: you have no shortage of options to choose from. Fortunately, in modern times we have the freedom to pick the level of engagement, risk, potential return, and length of time we commit our money.

Of course, there is risk involved in any investment so it’s wise to consider diversifying your portfolio as you’re beginning to invest for income. Notably, many working professionals do not have the time in their busy lives to run actively managed investments such as rental properties and businesses.

Pinto Capital Investments is a private investment firm offering busy investors the opportunity to passively invest in highly profitable multifamily and commercial real estate. That way investors can diversify their portfolios and earn lucrative returns in a low-risk, hands-off investment. If you’re looking to invest $100k for income the easy way, get in touch with Pinto Capital Investments today.

Anthony Pinto
Anthony Pinto
Anthony Pinto is the founder and CEO of Pinto Capital Investments (PCI), a real estate investment firm focused on acquiring affordable and workforce multifamily properties and apartment buildings through syndications. Since 2019, PCI has gone full cycle on 2 large apartment complexes (+100 units) with an IRR in excess of 85%.