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Getting Started with Real Estate

Getting started is often the biggest challenge for most folks. Therefore, here are 20 plus steps you can start in the next 30 days.

  • Set goals: A simple goal, like buy one rental property in the next 90 days. Now, add some objectives to that goal like: prospect 100 properties, visit 30, negotiate 15, put offers on 10, etc.
  • Understand the principles of a good deal. You must know how to calculate: a cap rate, cash on cash, fair market value, and Gross Rent Multiplier. If you do not know these terms, research them and learn them before you go.
  • Review classified ads. FSBO ads can be good deals. Go take a look at them. Even if it is just to visit homes for sale and get use to talking individuals.
  • Read real estate magazines. Homes for sale. Take a look. Often supermarkets have real estate magazines.
  • Drive through neighborhoods. Some of the best deals are with a 30 minute drive of your existing home. FSBO. A chance to get a good deal.
  • Be organized – be prepared. A good data base. Tracking forms. Files. Excel spreadsheets. All help the cause.
  • Convey a professional image. Business cards, leave behind pieces, a web site, all help give a professional image. Invest a few dollars in the tools to make a good impression.
  • Tell associates, friends and peers. You know 200 folks. Make a list. Let them know you are buying selling real estate. You will be surprised. There are folks that can help you, but also buyers and sellers in your immediate friends and associates.
  • Develop telephone scripts. Build a question sheet for the telephone. Simple questions like: Why are you selling? What is the purchase price? How did you come up with the price? How many sq. ft. etc.
  • Draft a contract or agreement of sale form. A good buyer’s contract is important. Get a good one. Pay for it, or borrow it from another investor.
  • Understand contracts and agreements. There are dozens of contracts. Some of the best are in a program called REIS software. 
  • Call 10 to 20 sellers this week. Get the ball rolling. Even if you do not know how to finish the deal. Just get use to calling folks and asking questions.
  • Recruit a Realtor or agent. They can bring a number of deals. Get them working for you a.s.a.p.
  • Visit the courthouse. An auction at the courthouse. It has investors, and bank representatives, visit with them. They are sources of money and deals.
  • Inspect a property. Get use to look at walls, lawns, under sinks, and figuring out what is involved in an “inspection”. Maybe take a home depot week end class on repairs.
  • Prepare the offer. Write a couple contracts. Just to get use to the forms. Of course if you do an offer with “subject to partner’s approval” you have less risk too.
  • Develop a database of buyers. You need sellers and buyers in your database.
  • Maximize your credit. Prepare your credit cards, loans, and equity loans.
  • Take your banker to lunch. Develop your relationship with lenders.
  • Check out the “money available” classifieds. In many cases, they lend based on real estate. Also, check out “Hard Money”.
  • Build the rest of your team. A team includes: agents to find deals, mortgage brokers to find money, Title Company to close deals, contractor to repair properties, etc. Make sure you build your team.
  • Look in the “For Rent” classifieds. There are a number of properties in the for rent section, that are really for sale. Absentee landlords and existing landlords that want to get rid of properties.
  • Explore advanced real estate strategies. Knowledge is a good thing. Learn various ways to negotiate, contract, buy and sell real estate. Just a few to consider: lease with option to buy, wrap mortgages, land contracts, and seller financing.

Make your getting started list, and get going!

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