Have your team of advisers? Check!
Have the money ready to go? Check!
Know your exit strategy? Check!
But where in the heck are the do you find the perfect property for your next real estate deal?
There are literally 100’s of things you can be doing right now to get that next deal to come across your desk.
However, if you try to do 100’s of things right now, all at once, you probably will get overwhelmed and give up. So let’s narrow this down to some of the top ways you can find a really great deal, right now.
#1: Realtors. Go to your team of advisers and find 2 or 3 Realtors who know the area you want to work and find out exactly how they work and how they can get you access to the deals on MLS. Ideally you want an agent who will do two things. First you want an agent that will set up an automatic search of the MLS for you and send you new listings that meet your criteria as they list and who will also have the time to take you to view the listings you want to see. Second you want an agent who knows exactly what you want and who will call you when that best deal comes across their desk.
Sadly the ideal agent is probably not out there unless you are their only client. Because they want to make money, they will probably be working with other buyers and sellers and will not always be able to drop everything to take you out to see that brand new listing. So consider becoming your own agent or if you have a partner, have one of the partners become an agent.
As a Realtor I have worked with several investor buyers and let me give you some tips here.
If you sign up for an automated email, watch for the deals to come across. Give your agent feedback so they can refine the search. If you are getting too many deals that just don’t fit, narrow your parameters and if you are not getting enough deals, widen the parameters. Plus giving the agent feedback helps them learn exactly what you are looking for and keeps you at the top of the pile.
You have heard the squeaky wheel gets the oil . . . or something like that? Anyway, when you are always checking in and giving the agent feedback, you stay on top of the desk and the agent remembers you are looking for a deal. Just don’t be the pesky buyer that calls ever day asking if they have found anything, the annoying buyer usually gets pushed to the bottom of the pile.
Now that you have the #1 access to properties for sale, it’s time to get busy and find the 2nd best supplier of good deals.
#2: Wholesalers. Again hit up your team of advisers and the local real estate investment group and find the top wholesalers in your area. These are the guys and gals who go out and do most of the 100’s of things to find deals. They do it every day and they have houses for sale. Many times you can just sign up on their website to get the emails of their properties for sale as they come available, which is all well and good. But did you know that most wholesalers sell the best houses before that email blast ever goes out.
You may have heard a few wholesalers you know say they have a list of buyers and also a list of preferred buyers. The really good deals go out to that list of preferred buyers a few days in advance and then, if none of the preferred buyers steps forward to buy, only then does the deal go out to everyone.
So how can you get on that preferred list? First, go to the wholesaler’s website and sign up as a buyer and be specific in your criteria. And be sure to define cities and states. Especially here in the Kansas City Market – if you are looking for Kansas City Properties on the Missouri side, don’t just enter Kansas City or you might get Kansas City Kansas properties. Second, after you have signed up and the wholesaler has your contact information, call or email them to follow up and give them a bit more information about your ideal property. Third, follow up about once a month to see if they have anything available . . . again that squeaky wheel thing.
And the best thing you can do to be on the preferred buyer’s list is to buy a property. Once you have purchased a property, you move up on the list of buyers.
So we have looked at the two best ways for deals to find you, but there are a few more of the 100’s of things you should spend a bit of time getting set up and systematized so you get more deals. Yes, I know you only need 1 good deal right now, but did you know that on average, out of 1000 houses sent to you through the above means only 100 might even be a deal and out of that 100, only 10 will you probably write an offer on and out of that 10, you should get your 1 deal.
If only 1 deal a year is all you need, then you are all set. If you have not found that 1 deal yet or you want more than 1 deal a year, then you need roll up your sleeves and try your hand at marketing for deals.
Here in our office our Website is our Number One hands down way we get lead and deals. It beats the MLS and other wholesalers mainly because we work hard at making this our number one way to find deals. So if you are just starting out you might thing that a website would not work for you and it might not, right away, but all the things we are going to list below all generate leads and drive traffic back to your website. So you can start today doing anyone one of the things we will mention below and it will generate leads for you.
#3: Have a Website: The ideal website will have 4 things. A main home page where people can find out what you do, buy houses. A sign up page where they can tell you about their house for sale. An about us page that talks about you as a real person, more on this in a minute. A blog page where you can share information that is helpful to motivated sellers and packed with key words.
Your about us page shows that you are a real person and while a guru might want to sell you a templated website that is a part of their main website and sell you leads, I have spoken with many sellers who have been on the other sites, yet decided to call our office first and when we asked them why, the answer was always because we looked like a real person who was local that they could call up and talk to. The other sites looked like big 1-800 number companies and not real people.
Your Blog page allows you to write articles about problems that motivated sellers are facing and pack that article with key words about the problem, the area you work and words like sell fast for cash, sell fast, sell your house now . . . you get the idea.
#4: Post ads on Craigslist. Now you might think, I don’t have the website yet . . I have to do that first. YOU DON’T. The website is something you want to get as soon as you can, however, don’t wait until you have a website to start posting craigslist ads. Just start posting them, consistently over and over and over. Not sure what to say, go to google and search for “Sell My House Fast” and “Craigslist” and you will get a ton of other ads, not to copy, but to use as ideas for your own ads.
#5: Create at least 1 Social Media Page – ideally more. I really like Facebook, Twitter and Google Plus, where I can join in groups and become a part the community and from time to time interject posts that share the latest house you just purchased or how you helped someone solve a problem. Take the time to set up your profile on these pages to show, again that you are a real person, and be sure to include links to your website, your dedicated phone number and email where they can call you about selling a house. And remember, don’t just set it and forget it, take the time to interact with it, maybe watch a few YouTube Videos or attend a few webinars on Social Media Marketing so you get started right from the beginning.
#6: Solve Problems. I try to take one topic a month that is a key issue to motivated sellers, and write a blog post or record a video that I can then post on my blog or on my social media pages or both as well as turn into ads for Craigslist. So you might create 3 articles or videos or combo and post over the month. Topics like selling an estate, facing foreclosure, what to do in a tax sale situation, how to get your house cleaned out, tips on selling a house in general.
#7: Direct Mail Marketing. I have to honestly say, we do direct mail marketing, but we don’t do a lot. We mail key addresses of houses we have driven by and really want to talk to the seller, after maybe knocking on the door or leaving a business card on the door. We also buy lists of motivated sellers and send letters to them. But again, we don’t do this a lot as it’s a total pain and tough to do yourself – not that it’s hard, but it’s really time consuming. You can also use a service, but keep in mind that if 10 people buy list from the same service and send the same mail piece, who is going to get called back, the 10 with the exact same computer generated letter or one from me that is different? I don’t know but they do call, maybe not when the get the letter, but usually after they get a couple of letters from us and usually 6 months to several years later.
So there you have it folks, the marketing plan for KCInvest.com – at least to find motivated sellers. Note that Kim Tucker, the marketing manager of KCInvest will be speaking at the August 11th MAREI Meeting. She will be narrowing those 100 houses that come across your desk to a more manageable number so you can then decide if you should actually get out of your chair and go look at the deal.