Investors who haven’t yet purchased a personal residence may consider buying one that could later be used as a rental property. Lower rates and higher loan-to-value (LTV) financing are available for personal residences, and a potentially large tax exemption is available for those who sell a property they lived in for two of the past five years.This means that an investor could potentially move into a home, live there for two years, rent it out for three years and then sell it with a personal residence tax exemption. The funds gained could then be invested into another property. Another option would be to hold the existing property as a rental. This is an excellent way to get started in real estate investing.Investors who already own a personal residence and prefer not to move can still purchase a rental home with a down payment of $25,000 or less in many markets. Investment properties generally can qualify for around 80 percent financing with rates approximately a point or so higher than those for personal residence mortgages.