GUEST POST by – Soren Godbersen , Chief Growth Officer at EquityMultiple

Real Estate Private Credit — a Timely Strategy for Your SDIRA Dollars

Investing in real estate private credit through a self-directed IRA can be a lucrative and strategic approach for enhancing portfolio diversification and achieving attractive risk-adjusted returns. This investment strategy aligns with the current financial climate, where traditional banking institutions have reduced their lending activities, creating a vacuum for private lenders​​​​. Below, we explore the benefits of investing in real estate private credit and outline potential strategies for maximizing returns through a self-directed IRA.

Understanding Real Estate Private Credit

Real estate private credit involves lending capital to real estate investors or developers, typically secured by real estate assets. This asset class includes various types of debt investments, such as bridge loans, mezzanine financing, and preferred equity.

The main advantage of private credit is its ability to offer higher yields compared to traditional fixed-income investments due to the illiquidity premium and complexity of the underlying assets. As Howard Marks posted in late 2023, investors today can get equity-like returns from investments in credit. This certainly applies to investments in real estate private credit. This seems likely to hold for some time, as the Fed’s recent remarks suggest a “higher for longer” interest rate environment.

Benefits of Real Estate Private Credit

  1. Attractive Yields: Private credit investments often provide higher yields compared to public market bonds. As traditional banks pull back on lending, private credit fills the gap, offering opportunities for higher returns​​.
  2. Portfolio Diversification: Real estate private credit adds a layer of diversification to an investment portfolio, reducing reliance on equity markets and traditional fixed-income securities. This diversification helps in managing risk, especially in volatile market conditions​​.
  3. Capital Preservation: Given that private credit investments are typically secured by real estate assets, there is an added layer of security and capital preservation. In case of borrower default, the underlying property can be sold to recover the investment​​.
  4. Predictable Cash Flows: Private credit investments provide regular income through interest payments, making them suitable for investors seeking steady cash flow. This is particularly beneficial for retirees or those looking to supplement their income​​.
  5. Inflation Hedge: Real estate assets generally appreciate over time, and rental incomes tend to rise with inflation. Thus, private credit investments backed by real estate can act as a hedge against inflation​​.

Strategies for Investing in Real Estate Private Credit via a Self-Directed IRA

  1. Due Diligence: Conduct thorough due diligence on potential investments. Assess the creditworthiness of the borrower, the quality of the underlying real estate asset, and the terms of the loan. Engaging with experienced fund managers or platforms specializing in real estate private credit can mitigate risks​​.
  2. Diversification Across Property Types and Geographies: Spread investments across different types of properties (e.g., residential, commercial, industrial) and geographical locations. This diversification can protect against localized market downturns and sector-specific risks​​.
  3. Focus on Short to Medium-Term Loans: Short to medium-term loans (2-5 years) provide a balance between liquidity and yield. These loans allow investors to adjust their strategies based on changing market conditions and take advantage of new opportunities as they arise​​​​.
  4. Utilize Professional Management: Investing through funds or platforms managed by professionals with expertise in real estate credit can enhance returns and reduce risks. These managers have the resources and experience to source, underwrite, and manage loans effectively​​.
  5. Stay Informed on Market Trends: Keep abreast of market trends and economic indicators that affect real estate and credit markets. Understanding macroeconomic factors, such as interest rate movements and regional real estate trends, can help in making informed investment decisions​​.
  6. Tax Advantages of a Self-Directed IRA: Investing in real estate private credit through a self-directed IRA offers significant tax advantages. Income and gains generated within the IRA are tax-deferred (traditional IRA) or tax-free (Roth IRA), enhancing the overall return on investment​​.

Implementing the Strategy

To implement this strategy effectively, start by opening a self-directed IRA with a custodian like uDirect IRA Services. This will provide the flexibility to invest in real estate private credit and other alternative assets.

Next, consider your liquidity needs, risk tolerance, and investing time horizon. Riskier types of private credit — such as mezzanine or subordinate debt — may offer more attractive target returns while senior debt and/or private credit fund structures may offer more downside protection. In almost any case, diversifying your allocation to real estate private credit as much as possible will serve you best.

Collaborate with platforms such as EquityMultiple to identify and invest in high-quality real estate credit opportunities.


Investing in real estate private credit via a self-directed IRA can be a powerful strategy for accredited investors seeking higher yields, portfolio diversification, and capital preservation. By conducting due diligence, diversifying investments, focusing on manageable loan terms, and leveraging professional management, investors can optimize their returns while benefiting from the tax advantages of a self-directed IRA. As the landscape of private credit continues to evolve, staying informed and adaptable will be key to maximizing investment outcomes in this promising asset class.

uDirect IRA Services, LLC is not a fiduciary and does not render tax, legal, accounting, investment, or other professional advice. If tax, legal, accounting, investment, or other similar expert assistance is required, the services of a competent professional should be sought. We do not endorse any particular investments. Rather we offer educational information so you can make an informed investment decision.  Contact uDirect IRA Services at for answers to all your SDIRA questions.  Get started with your own self-directed account by clicking HERE.