All Posts in Tag

luxury real estate

How To Get Any Homeowner On The Phone For $10

Get Any Homeowner On The Phone

It’s a dirty little secret in the wholesale biz that sometimes homeowners are hard to get in touch with. So many times you see a property you want to purchase, and even if by some stroke of luck you find out who the homeowner is, getting them to pick up the phone or return a letter can be next to impossible.

For $10, there’s a way you can get virtually anyone to pick up that phone. You come across looking a little bit like the guy from all the Saw movies, but trust – this is a move that will definitely get a homeowner’s attention and having you securing your sale. Here’s how to do it:

Hit the Thrift Shop

It seems like everyone on the planet has a high-tech smartphone of some kind, right? That’s a good thing – now, thanks to the popularity of the iPhone, you can find a simple flip phone in your local thrift store for as little as $5. Snatch a few of these up the next time you see them – if your thrift store has half-off sales, that would be a perfect time to buy. Next, activate these phones with pay-as-you-go plans. With a pre-paid minutes card you can get at any grocery store, load up your phone with some minutes and charge the battery.

Think Inside the Box

Go to your post office and get a small, flat-rate envelope or box. These retail for a fixed price (hence the term “flat-rate”) and usually won’t run you any more than $5 for a small sized envelope.

When you mail your phone, be sure to get something called the tracking number. The tracking number prints on your receipt and tells you where your package is and whether ..

Sunny & 74 Degrees in San Diego – Life Can Be A Beach!

Courtesy of Danette Dils with Windermere Homes & Estates

While most of the U.S.A. is shivering by the fire trying to stay warm, we in Southern California’s beach cities are golfing, playing tennis and gardening. It’s sunny, warm and gorgeous! I want to take the opportunity to suggest that you consider owning beach property in one of San Diego North County’s idyllic coastal communities.

There is a unique and special quality to a life that is lived by the ocean. Sea breezes, sunny days mixed with gray day marine layers, long walks on sandy beaches at sunset – these soothe the senses and uplift the soul. And San Diego North County is an exceptional piece of paradise. The beach communities that make up San Diego North County are a jewel in California’s coastline and offer their inhabitants and visitors wonderful and exciting lifestyles and events. The captivating coastal communities of Del Mar, Solana Beach, Encinitas, Carlsbad and Oceanside are located just a few miles north of San Diego and just a short drive up the coast is Orange County and Los Angeles. Exceptional weather – how about an average of 72-74 degrees year round! Winter and desert sports are just a short drive away. Imagine this – surf and sun on the beach one day and then drive to Big Bear for snow skiing the next day. And off-road with your ATV in the desert the next day. Lots of fun options – all with a beach oasis to retreat to at the end of the day and your activities.

Beach property as an investment is ..

How to Find Investors For Your Real Estate Deals

How to Find Investors

I’ve been writing about buying apartment buildings with money from private individuals. In a response to my last article “The # 1 Secret to Raising Money to Invest in Apartment Buildings” another BiggerPockets member asked “how do you find local investors that are interested in discussing deals?”.

Great question, let’s talk about it!

For several years before getting involved with investing in apartment buildings, I was renovating houses, fixing them up and reselling them. To finance these “rehabs”, I raised the money from friends and family. The minimum investment was $25,000 and paid I them 12% to 15% simple interest, guaranteed by the house. The title companies took care of the promissory note and recording the deed. As I was eyeing commercial real estate, I polled my existing investors to see which ones were interested in buy-and-hold commercial real estate.

I was disappointed to find that only a few of my existing investors were interested. However, I found that people I knew were able to refer me to people who were interested.

The lesson here is not that you should start small first (with rehabbing houses, for example) before moving into commercial real estate. Rather, the lesson is that you should leverage your existing sphere of influence to achieve what you’re looking for – in this case, to raise money for apartment buildings or doing flips.

In short, the lesson (which was also confirmed in a recent Podcast with Mike Simmons, ) is to talk to everyone you know.

But how?

It’s surprising who your family, friends, neighbors and co-workers know. Never discount anyone – tell everyone you know what you want to do and you will be surprised at what will happen. If someone refers you to ..

Tips for Marketing to Motivated Sellers

Marketing to Motivated Sellers

I have considered myself to be a pretty good marketer for 20+ years. I can actually remember the time when all marketing was done face to face, by using direct mail or with ads in places like TV, radio, and newspaper (before the internet).That was the way marketing was done. It was all about repetition and building relationships through the principle of “know, like and trust”.

Where marketing is concerned today, some things haven’t changed all that much. The person that has managed to establish that “know, like, and trust relationship” with motivated sellers will be the one to nail down the property just about every time.

There will always be those sellers motivated solely by money. Those folks will pick the newbie with the higher offer over the investor that they know has the experience to help them. Money is their only concern.

Many times those will be the deals that never close because the newbie investor simply made an offer that was too high. Let’s face it; when you are new, it usually shows by your lack of confidence, nervousness or maybe your inability to look the seller in the eyes and make that really uncomfortable low offer. But there are always motivated sellers that will overlook those things and sign on the dotted line just because of the higher offer.

Working with distressed sellers is a “one and done” process in most cases. There won’t be any repeat business. You may occasionally run across a seller that has multiple properties they want to sell at the same time, but most of my business with motivated sellers of distressed properties involves just one house.

What Happens When that Deal Tanks?

When that inexperienced investor finds that they can’t find a wholesale buyer or possibly even ..

Are Nothing Down Real Estate Deals Risky?

Nothing Down Deals Risky

How many times have you heard – Buying Real Estate with Nothing Down is risky? Let us examine the risk factor in nothing down deals:

Few Words About Insurance

I often write about the duality – the proverbial ying & yang that exists in life. Well, let me tell you – nothing is more of a duality than the concept insurance. I’ve never met an investor who likes insurance or likes paying the bill for that insurance, and yet everyone does. Now, how is that…?

Let us understand the premise behind insurance. In most basic terms, the function of insurance is to protect you from a catastrophic loss – a loss of such magnitude that expense associated with it would send you into bankruptcy. For instance, you don’t need auto insurance most of the time, but on a day when you have an accident you really do because you’ve caused $200,000 worth of damage and have no means with which to pay up. Same goes for health insurance, fire insurance, flood insurance, etc.

So – all that we are doing by purchasing any given insurance policy is we are transferring the risk of an over-seized expense some time in future away from ourselves and onto an insurer. The more the actuarial risk of such an event, the more we can expect to pay in premiums. That’s the name of the game – transfer the risk…

It seems to me that real estate is no different from any other circumstance in life in that if we can, as much as we can, it is desirable to transfer the risk of a future loss away from ourselves. Let’s agree to define the ultimate loss in real estate as ..

Flipping Houses: The Ultimate Step by Step Guide

Post image for Flipping Houses: The Ultimate Step by Step Guide

I have an extraordinary hatred for puzzles.

Now, you are probably thinking “that’s a strange thing to have a hatred toward.”

Well who asked you? I can explain…

Where was I?

Oh yeah – puzzles. Ugh.

You know the kind – where you open the box and there are 1000 little pieces staring up at you with hatred.

Where do I start? The corners? Then what? Do I really have to try 999 pieces to see what’s going to fit best with that corner piece? Why is this piece purple? Does this piece look “dirty” to you? I don’t like this … I’m going to take a nap.

Whether you like puzzles or not, there is one simple task that nearly every person does before beginning… they look at the box.

That’s right- the big photo on the front of the box that shows what the final puzzle should look like when it’s completed. If you are like me, you probably lean the box up against something so you can see the “whole picture” the whole time while you work.

You might be wondering why I’m talking about puzzle pieces in an article about flipping houses. Here’s the truth: flipping houses is often like a puzzle, and it helps to see the whole picture.

Ah… see what I’m getting at?

The internet is full of “puzzle pieces” about flipping houses.

  • ARV
  • Staging
  • Hard Money
  • Contractors

These are all pieces to the house flipping puzzle – and very important pieces at that. However, if you are new to house flipping, these little nuggets of information can look just like those 1000 little puzzle pieces on the table. It can be overwhelming.

I don’t want you to look at flipping houses with hatred, the way I look at puzzles.

So consider this post to be “the box cover.” This post is designed to be the whole picture, so ..

Home Mortgages: What is the Latest?

Courtesy of The Dawn Thomas Team

We have another great article from Gino Blefari, the Founder and President of Intero Real Estate. This one is entitled, Keeping Mortgages Accessible. Most people know that access to mortgages became infinitely harder after the crash as it was the result of many borrowers getting way more then they could pay. Now that we’re moving out of it and the market is on the upswing, what’s happening with mortgages? If you’re thinking about buying a home, reach out to The Dawn Thomas Team today.

“Access to mortgages has been a hot-button issue ever since the days of the housing boom. Back then, the issue essentially was loose underwriting that swayed so far in one direction that we ended up with a slew of borrowers who were in over their heads.

Then, as the housing recession set in and regulators started coming down on lenders, we saw a reverse in the opposite direction. For many months, lending became so tight that a lot of people no longer qualified to borrow money for a home.

A couple of interesting news items cropped up this past week on this story thread:

1.) Federal officials came out and said they will delay any reduction in the maximum size of mortgage loans eligible for backing by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac until next spring at the earliest.

This is significant because it enables more borrowers to qualify for loans that tend to have better terms. Loans within the limits (called “conventional”) typically carry slightly lower interest rates and easier qualification standards than so-called “jumbo” loans that are above the limits. It can be ..

Quit Making New Year’s Resolutions

Quit Making New Year's Resolutions

Sit back and watch the show. That is what I do every year about this time.

You see, while successful people are just going about their daily routine, a bunch of other people come out of the woodwork and create these “New Year’s resolutions”. Then for the next few weeks or months they are gung-ho, 100% focused on achieving these resolutions. At some point they fizzle out, give up, stop and go back to how things were the previous year. But don’t worry, there will be a new year next year and they can repeat the process.

Does this sound like you? Someone you know? Did you feel offended while reading that previous paragraph? If so, maybe it is time for you to STOP making New Year’s resolutions and start being successful.

The Problems With New Year’s Resolutions

They Get Made on a Whim

When people make resolutions for the new year, they typically make them close to the new year and it is based on whatever they are thinking at that time. After people fatten up on holiday meals, or look at their bank account/credit card statement, it is no wonder that some of the most popular resolutions revolve around losing weight or making/saving more money. These resolutions are not tied to long and short term goals.

They Are Not Part of the Larger Context

Speaking or goals, it is important to derive our actions from our goals so that the actions will drive us towards achieving our goals. When resolutions are made without looking at the larger goals, they may not align and therefore not work towards achieving the bigger goals.

They Are Often Vague

As mentioned, top resolutions are often “lose ..