Gross Income Multiplier

Updated on April 4, 2024
Article byWallstreetmojo Team
Edited byWallstreetmojo Team
Reviewed byDheeraj Vaidya, CFA, FRM

What Is A Gross Income Multiplier?

A gross income multiplier appraises the property’s value, like commercial real estate, apartments for rent, shopping centers, etc. For example, one may calculate the current value of the investment/property to its gross annual income earned.

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To determine whether a property is sold at a good deal and per its current market conditions based on its annualized income, the gross income multiplier can be easily applied without incurring much cost and spending more time. Hence, this concept’s common use and easy application are beneficial.

Key Takeaways

  • A gross income multiplier estimates the property’s value, such as commercial real estate, apartments for rent, shopping centers, etc. 
  • One may calculate the investment/property’s current value to its gross annual income.
  • The gross income multiplier concept has been used since selling real estate property. Therefore, since 1740 it has been used when Thomas Miles displayed income multiplier variations.
  • It is a market-derived concept. Therefore, it has many meanings that do not alter personal judgments since it is an objective concept against other subjective ideas.

Gross Income Multiplier 

The gross income multiplier is a metric that is commonly used in the financial market, especially real estate and valuation of business. It helps in establishing a relationship between the gross income earned from a property or investment and its market value. The investors can easily and quickly find out the value of the property and make important financial decisions, which may be a commercial or rental property.

It is essential to note that the concept of effective gross income multiplier has been used since the era when real estate property was sold. Hence, it has been used since 1740, when Thomas Miles showed income multiplier variations. Richard Radcliff states that if the concept of gross income multiplier is used properly, one can also use it to determine the property’s market value by filling up details in the formula and taking the current market value of the property variable.

It is a market-derived concept. Hence, it gains many meanings as it is a market-derived concept that does not change with personal judgments. It is an objective concept against other subjective ideas.

Thus, effective gross income multiplier gives the investor a rough idea about the time period required to get back a profitable return on the property, where the calculation is made based on the gross income from it. But it does not account for any other expenses related to the asset, including tax payments, maintenance costs, etc. This proves that it is a very simple form of calculation and method of return estimation and should always be used along with other metrics for better judgment.

A lower value of the property is desirable due to the fact that it shows the income is more than the value of the property. A higher value of the multiplier will indicate that the property is overvalued which the investors tend to avoid. Therefore the method helps in quick assessment for comprehensive analysis along with other important factors.

Formula

Gross Income Multiplier Formula = Current Value of the Property / Gross Annual Income of the Property

Gross-Income-Multiplier

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Hence, the gross income multiplier is the ratio of the current value and annualized income of a property or investment required to be sold off.

Thus, one can say that it is the property’s fair market value.

Example

Let us understand the concept of potential gross income multiplier with the help of a suitable example.

Suppose Mr. X has a house property in a specific location. As per the market conditions and similar properties in the neighboring area, the property’s value is $7 million. Further, he rented it out to its tenants, generating an annualized rental income of $1 million. Calculate the gross income multiplier of Mr. X.

Solution:

The calculation of gross income multiplier: –

gross income multiplier example 1
  • = $7 million   / $1 million
  •  = 7 times

Advantages

The following are various advantages of gross income multiplier method which include: –

Disadvantages

The different limitations and drawbacks include the following: –

  • One of the most significant disadvantages of the gross income multiplier is that it does not consider expenses and other related costs while calculating the income multiplier. Hence, costs like license, a fee of utilization, maintenance taxes, etc.
  • The vacancy is not considered an essential part of a house property under the gross income multiplier. Thus, the final multiplier answer may be irrelevant.
  • One can only use it for comparison purposes with other properties; thus, it is a very strong concept in relative terms. However, it does not gain much importance in absolute terms.
  • This concept is usually used in real estate properties, rental properties, and investments. However, it does not gain much importance in other fields like buildings. Thus, it has a very limited applicability.
  • A property may have good income sources but the vacancy rate may be high. This is an indication that the income may be good till it has the income sources and may thus appear to be a profitable investment, but if it remains vacant for long time period during the year, it will struggle to maintain a consistent income. However, this factor is not considered in the calculation.
  • A good investment is also the result of proper management and effective utilization of various income sources. So, a real estate property may have a low gross income multiplier but due to low maintenance, it may not remain profitable in the long run.
  • The value of a property will not only depends on the annual income but also on the property condition, the location, the possibility of income growth in the years to come and the demand for it in the market. These factors are not considered during the calculation apart from gross annual income.
  • It is necessary to understand the advantages and disadvantages of the concept in detail so that investors can implement the same in proper or suitable projects and real estate property while making purchases or investments in the same depending on the income they can expect to earn over a period of time.

It is necessary to understand the advantages and disadvantages of the gross income multiplier in real estate in detail so that investors can implement the same in proper or suitable projects and real estate property while making purchases or investments in the same depending on the income they can expect to earn over a period of time.

Gross Income Multiplier Vs Gross Rent Multiplier

Both the above are two different financial concept or metric that are widely used in valuation of real estate investments and finds the relation between the market value and asset income. But they emphasize on different aspects of the income earned. Let us find the differences.

  • The main focus of the former is on all types of income generated form the asset, which may be rent, parking, or any other sources. But the main focus of the latter is only the income that comes from rental source.
  • The process of calculation of the former is market value divided by the gross total income earned annually but the process of calculation of the latter is market value divided by the gross annual income from rent.
  • A lower value of the gross income multiplier in real estate indicates that the income is more than the market value, which means the property is undervalued. A lower value of the latter indicates that the rental income is more than the market value. However, both are desirable situations from the investor’s point of view.

Thus, we learn about the differences of both concepts in detail. However, both has its own limitations, which should be considered while using them. The method should also be used along with other metrics for better results and a comprehensive analysis.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How to Calculate Effective Gross Income Multiplier?

The Effective Gross Income Multiplier sets a relationship between the Effective Gross Income and the Value or Price. The Effective Gross Income Multiplier formula = Sale price ÷ Effective Gross Income. The effective gross monthly income multiplier considers the monthly income instead of the annual income.

When to use gross income multiplier?

The gross income multiplier is broadly used in the real estate industry. For example, investors and real estate professionals can use it to determine whether a property’s asking price is a good deal—just like the price-to-earnings (P/E) ratio can be used to value companies in the stock market.

Can the Gross Income Multiplier (GIM) be used for all properties? 

This multiplier is commonly used for income-producing properties, such as rental properties, commercial buildings, or multi-unit residential properties. It may not be suitable for properties that do not generate rental income, such as owner-occupied residential properties.

What is Effective Gross Income Multiplier?

To get an Effective Gross Income Multiplier (EffGIM) for each comparable property, one must estimate each property’s anticipated potential gross income. Then, determine each property’s expected adequate gross income and divide the sale price by the anticipated good gross income.

This article is a guide to what is Gross Income Multiplier. We explain formula, differences with gross rent multiplier, example, advantages & disadvantages. You may learn more about accounting from the following articles: –