What Does Pro Forma Mean In Real Estate? (TOP 5 Tips)

But for the rest of us, pro forma means “as a matter of form” or “for the sake of form.” In real estate, investors use a pro forma to determine what the income, expenses, potential revenue, and net operating income of a property should be or could be.


What is a pro forma real estate?

In real estate, pro forma is a document that helps investors evaluate a property’s potential profit. A real estate pro forma report details a property’s projected net operating income (NOI) and cash flow projections using its current and potential rental income and operating expenses.

What is the purpose of a pro forma?

Pro forma, a Latin term meaning “as a matter of form,” is applied to the process of presenting financial projections for a specific time period in a standardized format. Businesses use pro forma statements for decision-making in planning and control, and for external reporting to owners, investors, and creditors.

What is a pro forma example?

Think of it this way: A pro forma statement is a prediction, and a budget is a plan. For example: Your income this year is $37,000. According to your pro forma annual income statement, it will be $44,000 next year.

What is pro forma cost?

A pro forma — Latin for “as a matter of form” — budget is a predicted budget based on unusual circumstances or possible changes to your company’s structure, revenues, profits or expenses. A pro forma operating budget can help your company prepare for changes such as mergers, investments, loans or acquisitions.

What is pro forma vs actual?

A pro forma financial statement is one based on certain assumptions and projections (as opposed to the typical financial statement based on actual past transactions).

What does pro forma mean finance?

A pro forma financial statement leverages hypothetical data or assumptions about future values to project performance over a period that hasn’t yet occurred. In the online course Financial Accounting, pro forma financial statements are defined as “ financial statements forecasted for future periods.

What are three benefits of creating a pro forma?

Pro forma statements allow management to:

  • Identify the assumptions about the financial and operating characteristics that generate the scenarios.
  • Develop the various sales and budget (revenue and expense) projections.
  • Assemble the results in profit and loss projections.
  • Translate this data into cash-flow projections.

What does pro forma mean in law?

pro forma. 1) prep. Latin for ” as a matter of form,” the phrase refers to court rulings merely intended to facilitate the legal process (to move matters along).

What is a business pro forma?

In financial accounting, pro forma refers to a report of the company’s earnings that excludes unusual or nonrecurring transactions. Excluded expenses could include declining investment values, restructuring costs, and adjustments made on the company’s balance sheet that fix accounting errors from prior years.

What is usually included in the pro forma of the business plan?

An effective business plan has to include at least three important “pro forma” statements (pro forma in this context means projected). The profit or loss, also called income, statement shows sales, cost of sales, operating expenses, interest and taxes.

What’s another word for pro forma?

In this page you can discover 9 synonyms, antonyms, idiomatic expressions, and related words for pro forma, like: as a matter of form, perfunctory, as a formality, for form’s sake, done as a formality, proformas, proforma, perfunctorily and pro-formas.

What is pro forma rental?

Real Estate Pro Forma – Defined This means that it has the market rents, income, vacancy rates, and operating costs that are comparable to other properties with a similar class and age in that market. Often, pro forma rents are calculated based on comparable rentals.

What is pro forma balance sheet?

Definition of pro forma balance sheet 1: a balance sheet containing imaginary accounts or figures for illustrative purposes. 2: a balance sheet that gives retroactive effect to new financing, combination, or other change in the status of a business concern or concerns.

How is pro forma cap calculated?

Pro forma cap rate is a tool for evaluating the return on investment of a property. To calculate a pro forma cap rate, divide yearly net operating income (NOI) by the total acquisition cost (purchase price plus repair expense).

What Is Pro Forma in Real Estate?

Real estate has traditionally been the preferred investment for people seeking to accumulate long-term wealth for their families and future generations. By subscribing to our complete real estate investment guide, you will receive assistance in navigating this asset class. Understanding how to calculate a property’s projected income, often known as the pro forma, is an important component of real estate investing. When evaluating investment prospects, you will almost certainly come across pro forma forecasts.

In this article, you’ll learn what pro forma is in real estate investment, how to calculate it, and when it should be utilized.

What is pro forma in real estate?

Pro forma is a phrase that is commonly used in real estate investing to refer to the predicted revenue potential of an investment property. When a property’s cash flow projection is generated using its future prospective revenue and costs, it may be used to demonstrate how a property could perform if specific modifications were made, such as boosting rents, lowering vacancies, making capital upgrades, and developing or extending the property

How is pro forma calculated?

A pro forma is a forecast of a property’s cash flow or net operating income for the foreseeable future (NOI). Here’s how you can figure it out:

  1. Identify and estimate the possible gross rental revenue from the property
  2. Calculate the rate of vacancy
  3. Make a rough estimate of all anticipated costs
  4. Make a subtraction from the property’s total rental revenue minus the vacancy rate to account for predicted future costs.

Realistic forecasts of income and costs should be used to determine income and expenses. In this lesson, you will learn how to examine and calculate a genuine, fair rental rate for the property based on its location, current condition, or anticipated future condition, while also taking into consideration the typical vacancy rate for your property type in that market. Always keep in mind that while some of the property’s present expenditures will remain essentially the same, it is pretty usual for expenses to either grow or decrease with time.

In some cases, property insurance premiums may be greater than those paid by the present owner, and property taxes may rise at the time of sale or immediately thereafter.

When is pro forma used in real estate?

Commercial real estate (CRE) pro forma is often utilized when an investment property is being offered for sale. It is most commonly used to establish a property’s cap rate before putting it on the market. It may also be used to assist prospective purchasers in determining the probable return on investment of a particular property. An experienced commercial broker will evaluate the present performance of the property and compare it to market standards, identifying areas where the property’s revenue or costs might be improved or lowered, and then putting up a pro forma for the property.

The pro forma forecasts of an experienced investor should be available if the property is being sold without the assistance of a broker; nevertheless, the potential buyer must be able to estimate their own pro forma for the property.

In many cases, the rental rates or costs reported by the seller or broker will be exaggerated or deflated in order to raise the property’s projected income or expense levels.

Pro forma in summary

When purchasing real estate, it is usually a good idea to compute your own pro forma. Pro forma is extremely essential in real estate, as it assists prospective purchasers in determining the potential growth of a property. However, it is and always will be an estimate of future growth. Projections may be wildly inaccurate, and a property that appears to be performing well now may not do so in the future due to a variety of circumstances that are just impossible to foresee in advance.

How to Create an Accurate Pro Forma in Real Estate

Investors in rental property do so for the cash flow that the property’s rent roll will create for them. It is used by both buyers and sellers to forecast the probable internal rate of return (IRR) on a rental property and to obtain the greatest feasible purchasing price for a property. As we proceed through this post, we’ll describe how a pro forma in real estate works, explain how buyers and sellers utilize a pro forma income statement, and go over other important rental property financial indicators that are dependent on having an accurate pro forma cash flow statement prepared.

What Does Pro Forma Mean?

In case you studied Latin in high school, you are already familiar with the term “pro forma.” The phrase pro forma, on the other hand, can be defined as “for the sake of form” or “as a matter of formality.” A pro forma is used by real estate investors to evaluate what the property’s net operating income should or may be based on its revenues, costs, potential revenue, and net operating income. A rental property that has previously been rented out through an online marketplace such as Roofstock has already demonstrated its financial viability, allowing you to make an informed decision.

This means that instead of utilizing an Excel spreadsheet to keep track of rental property revenue, costs, and other deductions, the seller is more likely to be using Statis instead of an Excel spreadsheet to create accurate financial reports such as income statements and net cash flow reports.

Another scenario is that you’re considering investing in a value-added property and want to make sure you can create enough prospective rental revenue by raising the rent to market rates to cover the costs of upgrading and capital expenditures.

Why Pro Forma in Real Estate is Important

GIGO is an abbreviation that stands for “garbage in, garbage out.” As used in computer science, the term “GIGO” alludes to the idea that if input data is incorrect, the resultant output will be pure gibberish. As a result, real estate investors utilize a pro forma to ensure that their financial estimates are as precise as they can be. Among the most crucial pieces of information on the pro forma statement are cash flow estimates and net operating income (NOI). Profit and cash flow are utilized in other important investment property formulae, including ROI (return on investment), cash-on-cash return (also known as cash-on-cash return), and cap rate.

Investors that utilize the erroneous NOI or cash flow figures in their pro formas might wind up overpaying for a property that is underperforming or missing out on a wonderful investment that another investor would have gotten because they used the correct numbers in their pro forma.

How to Create a Pro Forma for Real Estate

Using the following steps, you may build a simple monthly pro forma for real estate: The cost of the property is $150,000.

  • Gross rental revenue is projected to be $1,500
  • Vacancy loss is projected to be $75
  • Effective gross income is projected to be $1,425
  • And repairs are projected to be $75. Other expenditures (utilities, pro rata property tax, insurance, reserves and so on) equal $300
  • Property management fees at 8% equal $120
  • And other expenses (other than utilities) equal $300. The projected monthly cash flow or net operating income (NOI) is $930.

As soon as you have computed the pro forma cash flow or net operating income, the following step is to add in the monthly mortgage payment in order to establish the before-tax cash flow:

  • Net operating income (NOI) = $930
  • Mortgage expenditure debt service (principal and interest alone) = $476
  • Cash flow before taxes = $454 per month

Why BuyersSellers Use a Pro Forma

In order to generate multiple “what if” situations, buyers and sellers employ a pro forma. A pro forma, for example, can be used to anticipate the change in net operating income and property value if the vacancy rate increases from 5 percent to 10 percent when selling a property. Alternatively, if you’re purchasing a value-add property that will require $20,000 in updating costs, you can use a pro forma to estimate how quickly the renovation expense will be repaid if you increase rents by 5 percent, 10 percent, or 15 percent.

You might be interested:  What Does Noi Stand For In Real Estate? (Solved)

Seller’s Pro Forma

When selling a property, sellers might utilize a pro forma to make it appear as though the property is generating as much cash flow and net operating income (NOI) as possible in order to obtain the highest possible price. They accomplish this by preparing a simplified pro forma statement that may omit essential running expenditures such as property management fees or vacancy loss, among other things. However, this does not always imply that the vendor is deceitful because they might be self-managing their rental property in this instance.

Examine two simple pro forma statements for a single-family rental property worth $150,000, with and without an 8 percent property management charge put in, and the impact on net operating income (NOI) resulting from each: Income

  • Potential gross rental revenue = $18,000
  • Vacancy loss at 5% = $900
  • Effective gross income = $17,100
  • Potential net rental income = $18,000
  • Maintenance and repairs at a 5 percent rate equal $900
  • Property management costs at an 8 percent rate equal $1,440. $3,600 in other expenditures (such as utilities and property taxes and insurance, as well as lease fees and reserves)
  • There were $5,940 in total costs, but there was $11,160 in net operating income (NOI).

Cap rate = net operating income / market value = $11,160 net operating income / $150,000 market value Market value equals 0.074 percent (7.4 percent) of the total market value. On the basis of the pro forma above, a distant real estate investor should expect a cap rate of 7.4 percent after deducting the cost of property maintenance. In contrast, if the seller does not include the cost of property management, the net operating income (NOI) would rise by $1,440 to $12,600, with the seller saying that the property has a cap rate of 8.4 percent.

Buyer’s Pro Forma

Let’s say you’re buying the identical home, but there’s a considerable amount of deferred maintenance that the previous owner wasn’t able to complete because of financial constraints. You have been informed by a local contractor that the property need $10,000 in repairs.

Based on the rent comparables, you project that you will be able to increase the rent by 20% once the home has been completely refurbished. It is possible to calculate how long it should take to pay for repairs based on an increase in net operating income by creating a pro forma:

  • Rental revenue potential = $18,000 plus 20% = $21,600
  • Vacancy loss at 5% = $1,080
  • Effective gross income = $20,520
  • In this case, repairs at 5 percent equal $1,080 (minus the one-time remodeling charge)
  • Property management fees at 8 percent equal $1,728
  • And other costs. $4,532 in other expenditures (including but not limited to utilities, property taxes, insurance, lease fee, and reserves)
  • The total amount spent was $7,128. Profit (NOI) = $13,392 new profit minus $11,160 old profit = $2,232 greater profit.

According to the aforementioned pro forma, it will take about 4 12 years to recoup the refurbishment costs through an increase in net operating income. However, in fact, it will take less time since you anticipate being able to increase your rent by 6 percent every year. This will save you time and money. Using a fairly simple pro forma, we can determine how the increase in net operating income will alter if the rent is raised each year:

  • NOI in Year 1 is $2,232 (net difference between NOI before and after remodeling)
  • In Year 2, it is $2,366
  • In Year 3, it is $2,508
  • In Year 4, it is $2,658
  • And in Year 5, it is $235 a month.

In accordance with the aforesaid pro forma for the change in net operating income (NOI), which takes into account an annual rent rise, the remodeling expenditures of $10,000 would be recouped in 4 years and 1 month.

Why an Accurate Pro Forma is Important

Numerous financial performance criteria for rental properties, such as the cap rate, cash-on-cash return, and ROI (return on investment), are dependent on accurately estimating net operating income and cash flow. To illustrate, consider the following scenario: an investor purchases a $150,000 property for 25 percent of its market value ($37,500) with a monthly mortgage payment of $454 (principal and interest), earning an annual net operating income (NOI) of $11,160. The investor makes a 25 percent ($37,500) down payment with a monthly mortgage payment of $454 (principal and interest) and earns an annual net operating income (NOI) of $11,160.

  • Cap rate equals net operating income divided by market value
  • $11,160 net operating income divided by $150,000 market value equals 7.4 percent pro forma.

In this case, the cap rate is equal to the difference between the net operating income and the market value.

  • Generally speaking, cash-on-cash return is before-tax income divided by total cash invested
  • $5,448 before-tax income divided by $37,500 total cash invested (down payment) equals 14.5 percent pro forma.

To calculate the pro forma return on investment (ROI), we’ll assume that the property will be owned for a period of five years. 3 Return on Investment Zillow estimates that the value of a property in the United States has climbed by around 32 percent over the previous five years. In accordance with this historical average, we project that the residence will have a market worth of $198,000 when it is finally sold:

  • Pretax Cash Flow (before taxes) = $5,448 x 5 years = $27,240
  • Gain on Sale (after taxes): $198,000 – $150,000 = $48,000
  • Cost of Investment (before taxes): $37,500 down payment

Using the information shown above, the pro forma return on investment for the five-year holding period will be:

  • The return on investment is calculated as (Gain on Investment – Cost of Investment) / Cost of investment. For example, if the gain on investment is $27,240 before tax cash flow plus $48,000 gain on sale, the return on investment is $75,240. The ROI is calculated as ($75,240 – $37,500) / $37,500, which is 14.94 percent ROI pro forma and annualized.

Final Thoughts on Pro Formas

Investment property owners and developers utilize pre-investment pro forma calculations to determine what their net operating income (NOI) and cash flow from a property should and could be. The accuracy of a pro forma is crucial since numerous rental property financial measures such as the cap rate, cash-on-cash return, and ROI (return on investment) are all dependent on the accuracy of the pro forma. Making a mistake while filling out a pro forma might result in overpaying for a property that underperforms or missing out on a fantastic opportunity to acquire a rental property.

Pro Forma Real Estate: Everything You Need to Know

Summary:In this article, you will learn about pro forma real estate definitions, what should be included in a pro forma, how to recognize and avoid misleading pro formas, and why investors should consider using our REAL PropertyTM Pro Formas to more effectively compare properties and estimate returns on investments.


In the real estate industry, a pro forma is a crucial document that sellers should be familiar with and comprehend. In some cases, having the most exact estimates of costs on your pro forma might be the difference between having negative and positive cash flow.

A thoroughly prepared pro forma is a vital tool for any real estate investor who is planning to purchase a piece of land or building. Making use of the appropriate pro forma will help you to compare investment properties and avoid making a poor investment decision in the process.

What is a Pro Forma in Real Estate?

A pro forma is a Latin phrase that translates as “for the sake of form.” In the realm of investment, it refers to a way of calculating financial outcomes that emphasizes either present or predicted data, depending on the situation. In the real estate industry, a property’s pro forma is essentially its cash flow predictions. These forecasts will aid in determining the projected monthly cash flow of the home, as well as costs such as taxes and the estimated return on investment.

What a Pro Forma Should Include

Several significant factors must be included in a buyer’s pro forma, the most crucial of which are as follows: Repairs, vacancy loss, property management, and other miscellaneous expenses are included in the four categories.

  1. Repairs. It is reasonable to anticipate to have to set aside money every month for repairs and maintenance, even if the home you are purchasing has been recently remodeled. Typically, putting aside 5 percent of the rent each month will be sufficient to meet any essential expenditures. For older properties, on the other hand, purchasers may wish to include in vacancy loss that exceeds 5 percent of the total purchase price. In most cases, this is the most expensive line item on your pro forma sheet. Prospective renters should examine the duration of their lease and the amount of time their property is likely to be empty during the interim period between tenants. Also, once a tenant vacates the premises, there will be a period of time during which cleaning, painting, and repairs will be carried out in preparation for the arrival of the next tenant
  2. This is referred to as Property Management (PM). When a buyer plans to manage the property themselves, this section of the pro forma is frequently left blank. This paragraph should be included even if you intend to manage your own property since you will want to be reimbursed for your time and any expenditures that may be incurred. Even if you do not intend to get any remuneration for managing the property, it is still vital to include since the financial worth of the property is determined by the total of all associated expenditures. If you intend to hire a property manager, you should expect to pay between 8 percent and 10 percent of the total cost of the property. This line on the pro forma can be utilized for any additional expenditure that may come up in the future. We prefer to incorporate predicted insurance costs in our calculations. Taxes, legal fees, advertising charges, and any other expenses that are not deductible might be included in this category.

How to Recognize and Avoid Misleading Pro Formas

When dealing with turn-key firms, real estate agents, brokers, and sellers, it is extremely usual to see multiple distinct versions of their pro formas. Certain elements are extremely basic, while other elements are complicated and confounding. Occasionally, a pro forma will reveal the truth, but this is extremely rare. As a result, buyers should be aware of this and proceed with utmost caution when examining a seller’s pro forma. The best procedure is to obtain a pro forma that meets your requirements and employ it rather than the seller’s.

Misleading Pro Forma Examples

The following is an example of a too simplistic pro forma taken from the website of a turn-key property provider: Purchase price, gross yearly rent, monthly cash flow, and appreciation are all factors to consider. This specific pro forma makes the unrealistic assumption that there would be no costs at all, which is just not true. Cash flow returns also take into account capital gain or loss, which no one can foresee with certainty. Another example of a deceptive pro forma is one that is too complicated and difficult to understand.

  • Despite the fact that this pro forma contains maintenance and vacancy, it does not include any real costs in these categories.
  • It also includes principal decrease as part of the internal rate of return.
  • The data would appear drastically different, and investors would be unable to evaluate homes in the same manner.
  • Following that, we’ll talk about the differences between what a seller’s pro forma may look like and what a buyer’s pro forma should look like.

Seller’s Pro Forma vs. Buyer’s Pro Forma

If you are familiar with pro formas in any way, it should be obvious that the seller’s estimated costs will look substantially different from the buyer’s projected expenses. The seller wants to sell the property, thus their objective is to make the pro forma appear as cash-flowing as feasible in order to sell the property.

Many important costs may be omitted off the pro forma, just as we saw with the extremely simplistic pro forma we mentioned before. This is why it is critical for a buyer to have their own pro forma in order to make accurate estimates and forecasts about spending and cash flow.

Pro Forma vs. Actual Rents and Expenses

The value of residential homes is determined based on comparable transactions, which are sales of similar properties in the same neighborhood. Because it provides a solid indication of how much a property may be valued, this information is beneficial to purchasers. Keeping in mind that no two properties are alike, comparable sales can offer an indication of the value of a property, but they cannot be relied on to accurately estimate it. The most important lesson to take away from this is that purchasers should not rely their financing decisions on the pro forma, especially if the sellers are involved.

Keep in mind that a pro forma is merely your best estimate of future expenditures.

Pro Forma Rents

Ensure that, while evaluating the seller’s pro forma, the expected rentals are based on real rental rates. Consider the following scenario: you are looking at a multi-unit rental property where the seller offers rentals at $1,500 per month, per unit. Buyers should consider the actual average rent of each unit, rather than the potential rent that the units may command. To achieve this, you’ll need to compare the rentals of each unit and figure out what the average is. This figure will be far more accurate, and it should be included in your pro forma under the heading “Projected Rent.”

Pro Forma Expenses

Sellers will not be able to make up for the amount of money they have spent on property expenditures. However, they frequently attempt to keep spending under control for several months or even a year before putting the house on the market. In this method, they may make a justification for listing the property with a smaller number of expenditures, so making the property look more lucrative than it is in reality. In order to gain a more realistic picture of the property’s costs, it’s essential to look at a detailed month-by-month breakdown for at least the last 12 months, and ideally for the last two years.

You may also compare it to other similar properties you own, or you can use specific rules of thumb, such as the 50 percent rule, to determine its value.

Whatever you decide, DO NOT make the mistake of assuming that the seller’s pro forma is a fair representation of costs against future cash flow.

What is a REAL Pro Forma™?

Selling income property can be a creative business, and sellers may be quite inventive in how they calculate returns on their investments. After all, when their returns appear to be larger than those of their competitors, they may sell far more.

Learn how to recognize deceptive pro formas and avoid making a poor investing decision. RealWealth is establishing the standard by defining the REAL Property Pro FormaTM, which will allow investors to more accurately predict returns and compare properties in a more straightforward manner.

Projected Rent

No one can guarantee market rates, which is why we use the term “Projected Rent” in our REAL pro forma. Seasonal and economic variables influence the amount of money available. Investors should constantly run their figures with the assumption that rents might grow or drop by 5%.

You might be interested:  What Is Skip Tracing Real Estate? (Solved)

Projected Taxes

We use the term “Projected Taxes” because properties are occasionally evaluated after acquisition, and tax amounts might move either up or down depending on the situation.

Projected Insurance

We use the term “Projected Insurance” since investors might obtain varying insurance quotations depending on their credit history, the location of their homes, and the number of properties they have.

Property Management Fees 8%

Property Management (PM) fees can range from 8 percent to 10 percent of monthly rents, although a normal cost is between 8 and 10 percent of monthly rates.

Projected Maintenance 5%

We set aside 5% of our total reserves for planned maintenance and vacancy reserves. Obviously, if the property is ancient, in a low-income neighborhood, or has not yet been rebuilt, this figure should be greater. A walk-through of the property will provide the buyer with a better understanding of the upkeep and repair charges that will be incurred. This should be considered as part of your due diligence process when making a real estate investment.

Projected Vacancy Rate 5%

Often, sellers may leave out maintenance and vacancy reserves from their pro formas since they are not considered genuine costs by lenders. They are only estimations of probable repairs and vacancies that the investor should factor into his or her financial planning for the future. Experienced investors always include these figures in their financial projections. Some experienced investors additionally include other line items like as re-lease fees, accountancy fees, and make-ready charges in their budgets.

Projected Cash Flow

As soon as you have a clearer understanding of what your expected REAL net cash flow will be, divide that figure by the amount of money you invested in the transaction. This figure will represent your predicted cash flow from the property you’re purchasing.

Calculating Projected Returns Using a Pro Forma

Let’s step through the process of calculating our predicted returns using the pro forma real estate template provided above. Consider the following scenario: you paid $77,000 in cash for the home, which included closing expenses. The net cash flow of $610 per month would total $7,320 per year if calculated on an annualized basis. To calculate the cash on cash return, divide the estimated yearly net cash flow by the amount of money that was initially invested: $7,320 divided by $77,000 equals.09, or a 9 percent return on investment.

If you were to finance the house with a 20 percent down payment and 5 percent interest, your cash outlay would be $17,000 (which includes the down payment and closing expenses), and your monthly mortgage payment would be $322.

Reduce the $610 monthly cash flow by $322, and your net cash flow with borrowing will be $288 per month, or $3,456 yearly, as shown in the table. $3,456 divided by $17,000 equals.20, or a 20% return on investment.

Add Additional Expenses to Your Pro Forma as Necessary

If you want to have a better understanding of your entire return, real estate investors might opt to include tax deductions, possible appreciation, and loan payoff in their calculations. However, in order to genuinely compare one REAL turn key property to another, the basic REAL pro forma outlined above should be used instead.


Hopefully, after reading this post, you have gained a better understanding of the concept of pro forma real estate, how to recognize a deceptive pro forma, how to correctly estimate costs, and which pro forma is best for you. Take use of our basic, easy-to-understand pro forma worksheet when you are assessing and comparing various real estate investments. This will help you make better predictions on returns and prevent making a disastrous investment. Please join the Network by clicking on the link below if you would like a copy of our Actual Estate Pro Forma excel template, which can be used to assist determine real returns on your investments.

Bonus: Free Pro Forma Spreadsheet Download

To get the Excel template, please click here. Enjoy! Please keep in mind that this spreadsheet will assist you in analyzing and interpreting your financial goals as well as various investment alternatives. The information is based on the information you provided and is an estimate. Despite the fact that the calculations are based on credible sources, it is recommended that all information be independently confirmed. There are no promises or fiduciary obligations between the developer of the spreadsheet and the user of the spreadsheet.

A dangerous endeavor, investing does not guarantee future outcomes, and present or historical performance does not imply future results.


$1.1 Billion

RealWealth ®Members have acquired a total of $1 billion in assets.


Webinars that are free and educational are being produced.

RealWealth Foundation

We provide charitable contributions equal to 10% of all income generated from real estate transactions. There has been a total of $589,917 dollars raised thus far. Real Wealth Network, LLC is an educational organization that is not engaged in the business of real estate brokerage. Consult with professional third-party appraisers and inspectors to determine the worth and condition of any property you plan to acquire before making an offer. Do not wire payments directly to a seller; instead, employ the services of professional title and escrow organizations to complete the transaction.

RealWealth ® does not give legal, tax, accounting, or other professional advice to its customers or clients.

Nothing contained on this website or in this email is intended to create a contract or a legally binding legal obligation. 2020 Real Wealth Network, LLC owns the intellectual property rights to the material on this website.

What is a Pro Forma in Real Estate? 10 Things (2021) You Must Know

A real estate pro forma is a report that compiles current or predicted revenue and expense data in order to project the net operational income and cash flow of a property over a specified time period. It’s a vital part of the equation for real estate investors, but it may be difficult to grasp if you don’t know what you’re looking at while you’re searching. With the help of this post, we’ll try to explain what a pro forma is in the most straightforward way possible. Continue reading to find out more!

1.What is a pro forma in real estate?

Pro forma is a Latin phrase that literally translates as “for the sake of form.” Specifically, it refers to a process of computing financial outcomes in order to examine either present or predicted financial data in the investment industry. The pro forma of a property is simply a set of cash flow estimates for the property. These predictions establish the project’s anticipated monthly income as well as its anticipated monthly costs, which include taxes and the project’s estimated return on investment.

2.What should a pro forma include?

There are two critical components of a pro forma that you should take into consideration. Here’s a breakdown of what each one is. Assumptions: Because a pro forma is a forecast of future cash flows, you will need to make some assumptions in order to guide your forecasting. Among these assumptions include (but are not limited to) the following:

  1. Rent per unit or rent per square foot that is expected
  2. Design assumptions (number of units or square footage of the building)
  3. Expense assumptions (management fees, insurance, taxes, miscellaneous fees, repair reserves)
  4. Construction assumptions (number of units or building square footage)
  5. Predictions about financing
  6. Inflation
  7. Over time, the cost of construction has increased. Each month, capital expenditures are paid for out of reserve funds.

Project Cash Flow: After that, you will utilize all of your assumptions to create a projection of the project’s cash flow. The gross revenue, total costs, and net operating income will all be considered in the study. Typically, the pro forma will be valid until the end of the year in which the investor or developer expects to sell the real estate.

3. Why is a real estate pro forma important?

When an investor, developer, or lender examines the net operating income (NOI) and cash flow estimates from a real estate project, they may perform investment calculations such as the cap rate, cash on cash return, and return on investment (ROI) for the project (return on investment). These calculations enable the developer or investor to examine the project’s income to risk profile in order to decide whether or not the project is financially feasible. Inaccurate NOI and cash flow projections in a pro forma can substantially impair your other financial KPIs and result in bad investment decisions, which can be disastrous.

4. When is a pro forma used in real estate?

When an investment property is being offered for sale in commercial real estate, a pro forma is typically utilized to document the transaction. Developers who wish to raise funds for a development project can also employ pro formas, which allow a lender to determine whether or not the project is financially viable before approving funding. When a pro forma is employed in the sale of commercial real estate, it is frequently used to establish a property’s cap rate in order to properly price the property.

A commercial broker will evaluate the present performance of your property and compare it to market standards if you decide to sell your property through a business brokerage.

If you are not selling your home through a broker, an experienced real estate analyst or consultant should be able to assist you in putting up a pro forma for the transaction.

In order for the property to function according to the provider pro forma, the buyer must ensure that the rental rates and costs supplied by the seller or broker are not exaggerated or deflated in order to raise the property’s forecasts.

This is something to bear in mind when you consider what would be the best investment to make.

5.How do you create a real estate pro forma?

Are you a real estate investor who wants to construct your own real estate business plan? Here’s what you’ll require. Income: 1. Projected gross revenue– The total rental income that the property would produce if it were fully leased at all times. 2. Projected net income– The total rental income that the property would generate if it were fully leased at all times. 2. Vacancy allowance or loss– This refers to the amount of rental income that is lost between tenant turns for a given period of time.

  1. Additionally, once a tenant vacates the premises, there will be a period of time during which cleaning, painting, and repairs will need to be completed before a new renter can be accommodated.
  2. Other sources of income, such as late fees, coin-operated laundry, and so on.
  3. Expenses related to operations 1.
  4. Typically, setting aside 5 percent of the rent each month will be sufficient to meet any essential costs.
  5. 2.
  6. Remember to include this even if you want to manage your own property because you’ll want to compensate yourself for your time and related expenditures while doing so.
  7. If you intend to hire a property manager, the normal fee will be between 8 and 10% of the total monthly rent collected.
  8. Mortgage payment– If the property is leveraged, the mortgage payment will include monthly debt service payments as well (principal and interest payments).
  9. Other expenditures– This category covers regular costs like as taxes and insurance (if they are not included in the mortgage payment) as well as one-time fees such as leasing, legal, and marketing charges.
  10. Total expenses– This is the sum of all of the expenses, including repairs, property management fees, and any additional costs.
  11. 1.

6. What’s an example?

Let’s take the categories listed above and put them into action to demonstrate what a typical pro forma for a single-family rental property looks like when yearly revenue and costs are taken into consideration.

Some of the revenue and cost categories are dependent on a percentage of gross income, which is shown in the table below. Income:

  1. Gross income is projected to be $12,000
  2. Vacancy loss at 5% (of gross income) is $600
  3. Effective gross income is $11,400
  4. Net income is projected to be $12,000
  1. Expenditures total $3,960, with repairs accounting for 5 percent (of gross revenue) and property management accounting for 8 percent (of gross income) respectively. Other expenses total $2,400 (i.e. property taxes, insurance, and leasing charge)
  2. Total expenses equal $3,960.

Profit after tax is a measure of net operating income.

  1. Net operational income is $7,440
  2. Mortgage expenditure is $5,112 (principal and interest alone)
  3. Before-tax cash flow is $2,328
  4. And after-tax cash flow is $2,328.

This is only a projection of cash flow for one year. Although the pro forma will make estimates about future years based on assumptions about revenue and spending growth, it will also make projections about the current year (see below). See footnote 1 for further information. Are you looking for other examples? In this post, we’ve included some additional instances. Continue reading to find out more!

7. What’s the difference between actual and pro forma?

According to particular assumptions or “what if” scenarios, a pro forma statement depicts the performance of a property and how it might, should, or would perform in the future. Real-world financial performance of a rental property is represented by the term “actual.”

8. What four things should you watch out for?

Concerned about whether or not you’re looking at a skewed pro forma document? The chances are that if a pro forma appears to be too good to be true, it most likely is. Here are four things to look out for in a real estate pro forma that you should avoid. The vacancy rate is understated: Instead of calculating the vacancy rate as a percentage of gross revenue, investigate the market to see what the genuine vacancy rate is in your location. Vacancy rates are calculated as a percentage of gross income.

In a competitive market, on the other hand, this may not be the case.

In certain pro formas, lump-sum expenditures are oversimplified, and instead of presenting each expense as a dollar number, they combine all expenses into a single line item.

9. How do you recognize and avoid misleading pro formas in real estate?

It is usual for real estate agents, brokers, and sellers to use somewhat different versions of the same pro forma. These will range from intricate and perplexing to extremely basic in their presentation and execution. When examining a seller’s pro forma, proceed with caution because it may include inaccuracies. It is preferable practice to find a pro forma that meets your requirements and employ it (rather than the seller’s) instead. An example of a too simplistic pro forma may be found on the website of a turn-key property supplier that we happened to stumble onto.

It should be noted that this specific pro forma made the assumption that there would be no costs at all, which is just absurd.

You might be interested:  What Is Rsf In Real Estate?

On the other end of the scale is a pro forma that may be overly unclear and complex for your needs and goals.

Sometimes this level of intricacy is required by a lender, while other times it is entirely unnecessary.

So, what is the reason for the existence of deceptive pro formas in the real estate industry? Sellers may include extraneous information in their pro forma in order to either mislead purchasers or make their investment property appear more profitable than it actually is, depending on their goals.

10. What does a pro forma look like for a development project.

Consider the following scenario with a fictional home development.

Project Revenues
Number of Units 50
Average Sale Per Unit $400,000
Gross Sales $20,000,000
Less Commissions, Fees -$800,000
Net Project Revenues $19,200,000
Project Costs
Land Acquisition $2,575,000
Planning, DesignApprovals $600,000
SiteBuilding Construction $12,175,000
Amenities, Off-Site Costs $100,000
ManagementOverhead $1,760,500
Total Project Costs $17,210,500
Net Cash Flow Before Financing $1,989,500
Financing Interest $1,102,400
Net Cash Flow to Developer $887,100
Cash Investment $1,020,600
Total Cash-on-Cash Return 86.9%
Annualized Cash-on-Cash Return 19.9%
Internal Rate of Return 22.4%

In order to determine how much income will be earned, a developer must do a market study and provide recommendations on acceptable rentals, levies, and sales prices. This is where the developer’s knowledge and expertise will be useful. They will rely on their understanding of market rent or what comparable developments have sold for in order to make their decisions. Ultimately, they may decide to address this question by doing a more extensive market analysis or by penciling in the numbers that are already being utilized at another neighboring project.

  • In this situation, it is possible that the residences will fetch base prices in the range of $400,000 to $500,000.
  • Commissions and fees are being reduced: Expenses associated with the sale of properties can have a negative impact on gross sales revenues.
  • Charges like as legal fees, closing costs, and other “transactional” expenses should be removed from gross revenues as well.
  • To get at this figure, all you have to do is remove the Less Commissions and Fees from the Gross Sales.

Final thoughts

A pro forma is one of the most important documents in the process of purchasing a real estate investment. Prior to making a financial commitment to a transaction, you should carefully review this document to confirm that it is accurate. A pro forma can be deceptive at times, so be sure to study the tiny print to assess whether or not essential assumptions are both acceptable and backed by facts. Make sure to compute your own pro forma if you are considering making a real estate acquisition. It is beneficial to prospective purchasers because it allows them to see how a home may expand in the future.

The stock market is unpredictable, and forecasts can be far off the mark. Do you have any queries for us right now? Please share your thoughts in the comments section.

Additional Resources

If you are seeking for inexpensive land to purchase, you may find it on our Listings page. Before you acquire property, be sure to review the Gokce Land Due Diligence Program to ensure that it meets your needs. If you are wanting to sell land, please see our article on How to Sell Your Land for more information.

Would you like to receive an email with our latest blog/properties every Thursday?

Now is the time to subscribe. I hope you have found this content to be interesting. If you are interested in purchasing or selling land, you should look into the following: Disclaimer: We are not attorneys, accountants, or financial advisors, and the information contained in this article is provided solely for informative reasons. Our own research and experience have informed this post, and while we strive to keep it accurate and up to date, it is possible that some inaccuracies have occurred.

  1. Erika is a former Director of Affordable Housing for the City of New York who has transitioned into a full-time land investor.
  2. She graduated with honors from the University of Southern California with a Bachelor of Architecture and with a Master of Urban Policy from Columbia University before establishing Gokce Capital.
  3. Erika presently resides in the New York Metropolitan area with her husband, daughter, and cat.
  4. She is originally from Chicago and still considers herself to be a midwesterner at heart, despite her current location.
  5. ), Erika has a lot of interests.
  6. Erika’s most recent blog entries (see all)

The Real Estate Pro Forma: What Every Investor Should Know

The most recent update was made on October 29, 2019. For real estate investors, a pro forma is a report that compiles current or predicted revenue and expense data in order to project the net operating income and cash flow of a property in order to maximize profits. Everything you need to know about a real estate pro forma will be covered in this post, which will be written in straightforward English.

Why is a Real Estate Pro Forma Important?

In order for investors to be successful, it is vital that their pro forma be as precise as feasible. This is due to the fact that the net operating income (NOI) and cash flow predictions from a real estate pro forma are utilized in other investment property calculations such as cap rate, cash-on-cash return, and return on investment (ROI) (return on investment). A pro forma with an incorrect net operating income and cash flow might have a negative impact on the other financial measures and lead to a bad investment choice if the numbers are incorrect.

The Roofstock Marketplace has pro formas embedded into every property featured on the Marketplace, so you don’t have to dig out your Excel spreadsheet every time you want to make a purchase.

How to Create a Real Estate Pro Forma

The following are the components that investors who like to develop their own real estate pro forma will require:


  • Projected gross revenue is the total amount of rental income that the property would earn if it were completely rented out all of the time. An allowance or loss for vacancy is the rental revenue that is lost between tenant turns because of typical wear and tear, as well as the time it takes to perform repairs and then lease the property again. Other sources of income include late fines and coin-operated laundry. Effective gross income is calculated as the sum of anticipated gross income + other income less vacancy allowance.

Operating expenses

  • In order to pay future maintenance needs and capital renovations, even if the property is brand new, investors should designate (or set aside) a percentage of their monthly gross income in a reserve account to meet these costs. Property management: This expenditure should always be included, even if the property will be maintained by the investor, because the investor should be reimbursed for the time spent managing the property on their own. if the property is leveraged, the mortgage payment will cover the principal as well as interest, taxes, and insurance
  • Other expenses: they include recurrent expenditures like as taxes and insurance (if they are not included in the mortgage payment), as well as one-time fees such as leasing, legal, and marketing charges. Total expenditures consist of the sum of all repairs, property management fees, and all other expenses incurred.

Net operating income

  • After removing all operating expenditures from effective gross income, net operating income (also known as “before tax cash flow” or “before tax cash flow”) may be determined.

Example of a Real Estate Proforma

In this section, we will examine a typical pro forma for a single-family rental property, which will be based on yearly revenue and costs. Remember that some of the revenue and cost categories are calculated as a percentage of gross income, such as the following: Income

  • Gross income is expected to be $12,000
  • Vacancy loss is expected to be $600 at a 5 percent occupancy rate.
  • 5 percent = $600
  • 8 percent = $1,960
  • Other expenditures = $2,400 (such as property taxes, insurance, and leasing charge)
  • 5 percent = $1,400

Profit after tax is a measure of net operating income.

  • Net operational income = $7,440
  • Mortgage expenditure = $5,112 (principal and interest alone)
  • Before-tax cash flow = $2,328
  • After-tax cash flow = $2,328

Using a Pro Forma to Calculate Financial Performance

Let’s now take the net operating income (NOI) and before-tax cash flow from the pro forma and apply them to generate three of the most often used rental property performance measures. Suppose the investor financed the property with a market value of $120,000 and a down payment of 25 percent ($30,000) as follows: 1 Cap rate is a percentage of the total.

  • Cap rate equals net operating income divided by market value
  • For example, cap rate equals $7,540 net operating income divided by $120,000 market value equals 6.3 percent pro forma.

2 Cash-on-cash return on investment

  • Cash-on-cash return equals before-tax cash flow / total cash invested
  • Before-tax cash flow equals before-tax cash flow 8.1 percent pro forma cash-on-cash return = $2,428 before-tax cash flow divided by $30,000 total amount invested

3 Return on Investment Consider the following scenario: an investor has a long-term buy-and-hold strategy that lasts five years. According to Zillow, the average home price in the United States has climbed by around 41% over the previous five years. According to this historical average, the market value of the property will be $169,200 at the end of our five-year holding period.

  • Before tax cash flow = $2,428 x 5 years = $12,140
  • Gain on sale = $169,200 – $120,000 = $49,200
  • After tax cash flow = $2,428 x 5 years = $12,140
  • After tax cash flow = $2,428 x 5 years = $12,140 The cost of the investment is equal to the $30,000 initial down payment.

Using the information provided above, the pro forma return on investment for the five-year holding period will be:

  • Return on investment (ROI) is defined as (Gain on investment – Cost of investment) / Cost of investment.
  • Pro forma annualized return on investment is $12,410 in before-tax cash flow plus $49,200 in gain on sale equals $61,610
  • Return on investment equals ($61,610 – $30,000) / $30,000 or 21 percent return on investment.

Difference Between Actual and Pro Forma

Depending on specific assumptions or “what if” scenarios, a pro forma illustrates how a property may, should, or would function in particular situations. Actual financial performance of a rental property, on the other hand, is represented by the term “actual.”

Why do sellers use pro forma statements?

The net operating income of a rental property is a significant factor in determining the value of the property (NOI). Although the square footage of a home and the number of bedrooms and bathrooms are important factors in determining its worth, changing such parameters is tough for a seller to do using a pro forma. A seller’s pro forma may attempt to falsely exaggerate income while simultaneously reducing operating expenditures in order to artificially enhance net operating income (NOI). According to their objectives, they want to attract more buyers by implying that a property may be worth more than it actually is based on its actual performance.

The following is the market worth of the house based on its actual performance:

  • Cap rate equals net operating income divided by market value. NOI divided by cap rate equals market value. $7 percent cap rate multiplied by $10,800 net operating income ($900 per month x 12 months) is $154,286 in market value (rounded).

As a result of an increased NOI of $1,000 per month, the seller considers that the present rent is too low and calculates a pro forma market value for the home based on the following figures:

  • £171,429 pro forma market value from $12,000 net operating income ($1,000 per month x 12 months) / 7 percent cap rate

The seller has boosted the market value of the home by nearly $17,000, or around 11 percent, just by anticipating that the net operating income (NOI) will be higher than it actually is.

When would a buyer use a pro forma?

Buyers that rely on the seller’s pro forma run the risk of overpaying for their purchase. The down payment may also be more than necessary if the buyer funds the purchase, owing to the inflated value of the property. Even if the rise in fair market rent results in an increase in net operating income to $1,000 per month rather than $900 per month, the buyer still faces the risk of having the tenant depart if the rent is raised.

If this occurs, the net operating income (NOI) will decline as a result of vacancy loss, which will in turn lower the market value of the property:

  • $10,000 net operating income ($12,000 pro forma net operating income minus $2,000 from 2-month vacancy loss) multiplied by a 7 percent cap rate equals $142,857 in market value.

As a result of this miscalculation, the buyer overpaid for the home by $29,572 ($172,429 pro forma market value minus $142,857 actual market value), according to the seller. Examine the identical case from another perspective, supposing that the seller has no true understanding of what a reasonable market rent is in his or her area. It’s possible that the owner resides out of state and does not have access to a local property management business, or that the seller is not a seasoned real estate investor.

Assume the seller has listed the property for sale at $154,286 with a monthly net operating income of $900 in a market with a 7 percent cap rate.

Four Things to Watch Out For in a Real Estate Pro Forma

If a pro forma appears to be too good to be true, it almost certainly is. Here are four of the most common “gotchas” that lead to deceptive pro formas in the workplace:

  1. Because the genuine vacancy rate is overstated, it is recommended that you conduct market research to ascertain what the true vacancy rate is in your region rather than estimating vacancy as a proportion of gross revenue. Property appreciation: Multi-year pro formas frequently anticipate that rental revenue will increase at least at the rate of inflation, if not at a higher rate, which may not be the case in a highly competitive market. The absence of some costs, such as rental taxes and HOA fees, might lead to an artificially large cash flow in the pro formas they generate. lump-sum expenditures that are too simplified: instead of describing each expense as a dollar figure, some pro formas aggregate all expenses into one item that is calculated by percentage of gross rental revenue, causing the real cost of operating expenses to be overestimated.

Creating an Accurate Real Estate Pro Forma

In the process of putting together a real estate pro forma, it’s common for real estate investors to get excessively enthusiastic about the assumptions they make. They make the assumption that rents and property prices would continue to rise in perpetuity, while costs will remain constant from year to year. The unfortunate reality is that wishful thinking almost always results in poor investing decisions. Every single-family rental property posted on theRoofstock Investment Property Marketplace includes a pro forma, which is designed to assist single-family rental property investors in making the best decisions possible when purchasing a property.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *