What’s the Best and Highest Use of $20 Million in Real Estate Investing?

Each week, we post a new question to the Best Ever Show Community on Facebook. The Best Ever Show Community is a place where real estate entrepreneurs of all stripes and sizes can come together to interact with each other, me, and the guests featured on my podcast with the purpose of everyone helping each other reach the next level in their businesses and their lives.


What better way to add value than to ask you, the community, for your Best Ever advice on a variety of different real estate topics. This week, the question was someone is handing you $20 million in property for FREE. Which asset class would you choose?


This week’s question was a little different. We conducted a survey in addition to asking for written responses to the question, particularly for those who selected “Other.” The breakdown of the answers were as follows:


  • Multifamily: 58
  • Self-Storage: 15
  • Commercial offices, retail centers, etc.: 11
  • Other: 5
  • Mobile Home Parks: 4
  • Single Family: 2
  • Urban Mixed Use: 2


Mitchell Drimmer is one of the 15 people who selected self-storage, mainly because he has purchased multifamily in the past and is not a fan. He admitted that multifamily may perhaps have a higher cap rate but are nothing but problems day in and day out, especially in “value neighborhoods.” Mitchell hasn’t purchased self-storage in the past. But as an outsider, he says self-storage is seems like a business with almost no clients, no hard luck stories from residents, no evictions, no complaints about certain maintenance issues and very little code enforcement issues. Done properly, at the right price and in a good location, Mitchell believes self-storage is a great business model.


Ryan Gibson also selected self-storage for similar reasons – it is an asset class with the lowest “resting heart beat” (no tenants, little maintenance, minimal employees). But additionally, he picked self-storage because it has the most automation and the highest returns.


Brandon Moryl was one of only two people who selected their $20 million to be in the form of single family homes. And in particular, luxury homes. According to him, that part of the real estate market has yet to fully recover, meaning there is the potential for a lot of growth. Additionally, there is less competition in the high-end SFR space compared to your typical $75,000 fixer upper. He also said, “with the stock market killing it and the overall economy rocking, combined with programs like 5% jumbo [loans], that’s is where I would be.” Finally, and maybe most importantly, he says it’s sexy owning million-dollar homes. Indeed!


The investors who selected “other” offered more creative or niche investment strategies.


Danny Randazzo went with a diversified approach. Chibuzor Nnaji Jr. concurred. Danny would look for a deal in each asset class and invest in a few of the most attractive opportunities. “It could be one deal requiring $20 million or it could be a deal in each. Share the love!”


Deren Huang, with the support of Michael Nerby, would invest in NNN, or triple net leases. According to Wikipedia, a triple net lease is a lease agreement on a property where the tenant or lessee agree to pay all real estate taxes, building insurance and maintenance (the three “nets”) on the property in addition to any normal fee that are expected under the agreement (rent, utilities, etc.). He said NNN is the true passive investment.


The last two individuals left the real estate market entirely – at least in part.


Lane Kawaoka selected two answers. He would invest in multifamily because it “it’s the sweet spot in terms of the sharp ratio risk reward matrix. Not too hot, not too cold…just what the baby bear likes.” However, he would consider accepting the entire $20 million amount in the form of a savings bond and just live off the interest.


Finally, Diogo Marques would forgo real estate altogether and purchase solid, stable companies that he could see operating in 10 years’ time with a 10% to 15% net profit margin annually.


COMMENT BELOW: Someone is handing you $20 million in property for FREE. Which asset class would you choose?


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The Secret to Eliminating Competitors in a Hot Real Estate Market

How do you approach finding, underwriting and acquiring real estate deals when there’s so much competition in your market, niche, etc. that you cannot find a deal at a price that will meet your investment return goals? This was the exact situation that my apartment syndication business faced in mid-2017. We had a lot of leads coming in that met our investment criteria, but the competition was such that the purchase price kept creeping higher and higher until the deal was projected to achieve returns below that of our passive investors goals.


So, what did we do? Like any effective entrepreneur, we went into problem solving mode. More specifically, we reassessed our investment criteria.


Our standard investment criteria for initially screening deals is:


  • Was it built in the 1980s?
  • Are there 150 or more units?
  • Is it in or near a major city?
  • Is there an opportunity to add value?


If we cannot answer yes to these four questions, the deal would automatically be eliminated from contention. Normally, we didn’t have much of an issue finding and purchasing properties that met this criterion. However, as of late, we have. In particular, we had a challenge finding solid investments built around 1980, mostly due a high level of competition. So, we took a step back and began reviewing properties that were built much later. And as a result, we purchased an apartment community built in the 2000s for the first time.


We typically look at properties built around 1980 because we are value-add investors. Generally, anything built earlier than 1980 would be to distressed to fit into our value-add business model. Conversely, anything built later than the 1980s wouldn’t have enough value-add opportunities to meet our investment goals. Or so we thought.


After reviewing all the potential deals in our pipeline, regardless of age, we realized that these newer deals – the ones built between 1995 and 2005 – were actually projecting returns similar to those of the 1980s apartment communities. Generally, since they are newer buildings, the opportunity to add value was lower, but that was offset by the reduction of certain expenses, like ongoing maintenance, management issues, vacancy rates, resident turnover and overall risk.


I think the reason why, in our current market, 1980s properties have comparable returns to 1990s and 2000s properties is because value-add apartment investors are conditioned to make the former property type a priority. Most wouldn’t even look at communities built in the late 1990s or early 2000s because they think the numbers won’t work as well because there will be less opportunity to add-value. However, we were able to apply our value-add investing knowledge to a property built in the 2000s and create a business plan that would enable us to achieve the desired returns of our passive investors. Whereas most investors pursuing deals in this age range aren’t looking at them through the value-add lens, we were able to identify areas that could be improved that the other, non-value-added investors had missed. In other words, we leveraged our unique skillset (understanding how to recognize opportunities to add-value) to defeat the competition and be awarded the deal.


So, if you are having trouble finding deals that achieve your desired returns, reassess your acquisition criteria. Start looking at deals that fall outside your criteria and see if you can project similar returns. You may end up discovering what we did, which will lower your risk in the deal since it is newer and comes with lower risks and ongoing expenses.


All that being said, our priority is still properties built in 1980. And we’ve only purchased one apartment community outside that range. So, we’re keeping our eyes out for our initial criteria but also now acknowledge that sometimes it makes sense to upgrade, especially when everyone else is looking at the same types of deals as us.


What techniques have you applied to your real estate business that enabled you to navigate a competitive market and find deals that meet your investment goals?



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3 Investing Secrets from a Nation’s Top Broker

As you complete more and more deals, you will begin to accumulate the insider secrets of what it takes to be a successful investor. Once you’ve eclipsed a billion-dollars’ worth of deals, then those secrets are worth billions too!


Karen Briscoe, a Principal of the Huckaby Briscoe Conroy Group, is an individual full of billion dollar secrets. Her group has sold over 1,000 homes valued over $1 billion. It’s also been named to the Wall Street Journal Top Realtor Team list. Karen condensed these secrets into a published book – Real Estate Success in 5 Minutes a Day: Secrets of a Top Agent Revealed. In our recent conversation, she provided the top three secrets to her success and how you can apply them to your investing business.


Secret #1 – Invest in the up-and-coming markets


Karen’s first secret can be explained through the lyrics of a Frank Sinatra song. “One of the top tips that applies to investors in particular is what I call ‘New York, New York’, the song by Frank Sinatra with the chorus ‘If you can make it there, you can make it anywhere’,” she said. “If you look at the fundamentals of a certain market and you find that investors are being successful in that market, then you want to go to the next market [over], or like Wayne Gretzky says, ‘Go to where the puck is going’ – if you want to go where the market is going, then find the markets that have similar fundamentals but are on the edge, or soon to be the next place where everybody wants to be, because that’s where the best values are.”


This “New York, New York” strategy is followed by corporate giants like Starbucks and McDonalds. They search for the fundamentals and trends that hallmark an emerging market, set up their locations there and wait for the market to surge.


The fundamentals Karen says to looks at are the rental pool, jobs, schools and metro access. Or, for a hack, she said, “you could just apply the Starbucks effect, the Frappuccino effect that is talked about – how there has been found that there’s a halo effect around Starbucks. So, you could maybe go to that next ring around it and look in that area for what is upcoming neighborhoods that could be trending into better values over time.”


For a comprehensive guide for evaluating and selecting a target market, click here.


Secret #2 – Start a meetup group


Karen’s second secret, and my favorite, is to host a meetup or seminar. They type of individuals you’ll invite will depend on your business model and investment niche. As a broker, Karen said, “we’ve done investor seminars in conjunction with local lenders and other professionals like CPAs and financial advisors, because they too have a pool of clients who want to have real estate as part of their portfolio.”


There are many ways to structure a meetup group, and I wrote a piece for Forbes outlining a few successful methods. The main way Karen differentiates her meetup from her competitors is that hers is invite-only. She said, “I know that there are many agents that have done seminars that they open up, but we keep it invitation-only, and then that way these professionals are inviting their clients and offering a value-add service for their clients who have an interest in real estate.”


Secret #3 – Take Immediate Action


Karen’s final secret, which is also her Best Ever advice, is to start now. “There’s a Chinese proverb that the best time to plan a tree was 20 years ago, and the second best time is now,” she said. “I would say the same thing about real estate investing. I think the best time to invest in real estate was 20 years ago, and the next best time is now. I think many people become paralyzed with it, and I’m not discounting the fact that it has a lot of logistics associated with it, but the idea is just find yourself a real estate professional that you trust, find a lender that can work with you on getting financing that you can structure that works for you, and do it.”




Karen Briscoe, a billion-dollar broker, has three secrets to her success. They are:


  • Investing in the up-and-coming markets
  • Hosting an invite-only meetup group
  • Taking immediate action


Apply these secrets to your investment, which may require creativity on your part, and replicate her massive success.


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Three Ways To Thrive In A Trump Real Estate Market

This post was originally featured on Forbes Real Estate Council on Forbes.com.


If you’re a real estate investor and been keeping up with current events, chances are you’ve asked yourself this question: “How will Trump’s presidency affect the market?”


Since Donald Trump has made millions as a real estate entrepreneur, common sense says he will likely implement policies to strengthen the real estate industry. At the very least, he wouldn’t make a decision to undermine it. He wouldn’t hurt his own bottom line, right?


But with the current political climate as it is, it’s difficult to predict what Trump will do. If you’ve tuned in to any of the major news networks since the beginning of the 2016 presidential campaign, one of the most consistent things you’ve seen from Trump is … well, inconsistency.



I don’t know what will happen over the next four to eight years, and I don’t think anyone does —Trump included. I am not a politician, nor a political strategist. But I am a real estate entrepreneur. And the good news from a real estate perspective is that Trump’s actions shouldn’t matter.


Ultimately, as investors, we can’t make decisions based off of who the president is or who controls the House or the Senate. While Donald Trump’s inauguration and the ensuing tweetstorm are causing some Americans to celebrate and others to mourn, there are three simple principals that real estate investors must follow to thrive in the current market of uncertainty — tried and true methods that work in any market, at any time in the market cycle.


1. Don’t buy for appreciation.


Natural appreciation is a simple concept. It’s an increase in the value of an asset over time. From 2012 to 2016, for example, real estate prices in the U.S. as a whole increased by 13%, according to Zillow. If you purchased a property for $1 million in 2012 and sat on it, making no improvements, the property would have been worth $1.13 million in 2016.


Sounds like a good investment strategy, right?


Not necessarily.


It’s important to make a distinction between natural appreciation and forced appreciation. Forced appreciation involves making improvements to the asset that either decreases expenses or increases incomes, which in turn, increases the overall property value. Unlike forced appreciation, natural appreciation is completely outside of your control. Say you purchased the same property in the example above for $1 million in 2008. Four years later, the property value would have decreased by $229,000.


Many investors, past and present, buy for natural appreciation, and it is a gamble. Eventually, they all get burned—unless they’re extremely lucky. Buying for natural appreciation is like thinking you’ll get rich at a casino by playing roulette and only betting on black. Maybe you can double up a few times, but sooner or later the ball lands on red or — even worse — double zero green, and you lose it all.


That’s why I never buy for natural appreciation. Instead, I always buy for cash flow. When you buy for cash flow (and as long as you have a large supply of renters), you don’t care what the market is doing. In fact, if the market takes a dip, the demand for rentals will likely increase. When real home prices dropped 23% from 2008 to 2012, the number of renter-occupied housing units increased by 8%.


 2. Don’t over-leverage.


Leverage is one of the main benefits of investing in real estate.


Let’s say you have $100,000 to invest. If you decide to invest all of your money in Apple stock, you would control $100,000 worth of stock. On the other hand, if you wanted to invest all of your money in real estate, you could spend $100,000 on a down payment at 80% LTV (loan-to-value) and control $500,000 in real estate. If you’re a creative investor, you could use that $100,000 to control an even larger value of real estate. That’s the power of leverage.


But there’s also a catch.


The less money you put in the deal — or more specifically, the less equity you have in a deal — the more over-leveraged you are. Consequently, the higher your mortgage payment will be. In a hot market, over-leveraging may seem like a brilliant idea, but what happens when property values start to drop?


According to Zillow, from 2008 to 2012, real property prices in the U.S. dropped by over 20%. If you purchased a property in 2008 with less than 20% equity and wanted to sell in 2012, you would have lost a decent chunk of change.


My advice? Always have 20% equity in a property at a minimum. Avoid the tempting 0% down loans at all costs. Doing so (in tandem with committing to not buy for appreciation) will allow you to continue covering your mortgage payments in the event of a downturn.


3. Don’t get forced to sell.


When you’re forced to sell, you lose money.


The main reasons people are forced to sell or return properties to the bank are that they speculated and bought for appreciation, or got caught up in a hot market and were over-leveraged.


Another reason you would be forced to sell is if you have a balloon payment on a loan. This is typical for commercial real estate but not residential. The problem investors have is when they have a balloon payment come due during a downturn in the market.


A way to mitigate that risk is to be aware of when your balloon payment is due and plan years ahead of time for what type of exit strategy you are going to pursue.


Some common exit strategies are:


  • Selling the property
  • Refinancing into another loan
  • Paying off the balloon payment


By sticking to the three principles above, I’ve personally accumulated over $170 million in real estate assets over the past four years, and at the same time, I’ve helped countless of my investors generate passive income streams. Regardless of what President Trump does or doesn’t do over the next four or eight years, if you stick to these principles and invest in income-producing real estate, your investment portfolio will not just survive. It will thrive.


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Friday Facts – Best Real Estate Investing Advice Ever Lightning Round Q&A

Learn this week’s Best Ever guest’s best ever books, real estate deals, ways to give back and biggest mistakes


Kim Ades from JF999: World Class Author, Coach, and Thought Leader Sheds Light on Why the Successful RE Pros are Succeeding


Best Ever BookAsk and It is Given by Esther and Jerry Hicks


Best Ever Deal Kim has Done – “This house, the house I live in.”


“I was supposed to buy it, and then it got pulled out from under us and we ended up buying it afterwards at a lower price than out original offer.”


“It was a matter of maybe a month or so. A month or so later, with a new agent, things had changed and we found a bit of a loophole that allowed us to get us a lower price.”


“The loophole was the size of our balcony. Our balcony is oversized, and apparently because it’s oversized, it had to be ripped down, so we asked them to pay for the tear down theoretically, and they took that amount off the top of the price.”


Best Ever Way Kim Likes to Give Back – “Coaching, It’s just what I do.”


Biggest Mistake Kim Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Not knowing the tax law


“I mentioned to you that I used to own property when I was young, with my first husband (I’m remarried now). One of the things that happened to us is we owned a company together, and as our marriage unfolded, I ended up selling my shares. I didn’t know much about tax law or anything like that, and I made a huge error in the way that I sold my company, and a couple of years after the sale I ended up getting a call from our government (CRA) letting me know that I owed them $300,000 in taxes… So not quite the real estate story you wanted, but still, definitely an investment that kind of blew up on me, and it was a scary time. But luckily, I had the money, so I just paid it off and right after that I just really scaled back. I stopped going to get my hair done at the hairdresser’s, I learned to color it myself. I just took care of things a little bit differently and stopped living very frivolously, and just kind of scaled back until I recalibrated and kind of felt more comfortable again, but it took me a couple of good years until I got back on my feet after that.”


“There’s a way that you sell your company where you get a $500,000 tax exemption from the sale of a company, and I didn’t sell it that way, so I didn’t get that benefit, so all of it was taxable. I didn’t know, and because I didn’t pay that on that amount for a few years after that, not only did I incur a tax bill, I also incurred a bill on the money that wasn’t paid.”


“[My recommendation is to] speak to an accountant, and even a tax lawyer would be really helpful. Don’t just sell your shares… Understand what you’re getting into and make sure you’re taking the right steps from a legal standpoint and understand what the tax implications are. Taxes are a big deal.


Read Kim’s Best Ever advice: The One Characteristic Differentiating a Real Estate Pro and a Real Estate Rookie

Ricky Beliveau from JF1001: A Hidden Wealthy Niche that Involves a Fine Tuned Team


Best Ever BookHow I Built This (a podcast, not a book)


Best Ever Deal Ricky has Done – First rental property purchase


“The first building I ever purchased. I currently own it today – it’s my largest rental property. My purchase price was $930,00 and reappraised for $2.2 million.”


“I used FHA Owner Occupant, and in Massachusetts at the time the max one you could get was $816,000 for FHA, and then actually using the paper that I wrote I went to my mother, who had just inherited some money, and I asked her if she would invest in the property with me. So she gifted me $160,000 to get me started on that first property.”


“It’s a three-family property. When I purchased it, it was a nine-bed, three-bath; I lived in one of the units and I got my hands dirty and renovated it and turned it into a 12-bed, six-bath.”


“I was able to really drive up the rents and drive up the value. And also, I bought it at the perfect time. Boston in 2010 had really plateaued. From 2007 to 2010 it had almost been dead even, and then right in 2010 is when the market started to explode, and it hasn’t stopped since.”


Best Ever Way Ricky Likes to Give Back – Mentoring college students


“Right now, I’m a member of the Venture Mentoring Network at Northeastern. What that is is it’s startups and college students who have ideas and they’re trying to start their businesses. Right now, I’m mentoring a bunch of college students, trying to help them get their businesses going.”


Biggest Mistake Ricky Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Self-managing


“Thinking back, one mistake I made from the start was that I tried to self-manage my rental portfolio. I think that you can’t really deliver the high level of service that these tenants need when you’re doing it on your own, at least from my standpoint. I quickly realized that it was a mistake that I was trying to do that on my own, and I was able to correct that by hiring a management company to take over that for me.”


Click here to listen to my full interview with Ricky and learn about the hidden wealthy niche – condo conversions

Matt Wood and Mike O’Connor from JF1002: A Unique Way to Pay Investors Using a Property’s Cash Flow


Best Ever BookRich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki


Best Ever Deal Matt and Mike have Done – “Our 32-unit deal. We picked it up for $640,000 and it just got appraised for $1.35 million. It brings in roughly $18,000/month.”


Best Ever Way Matt and Mike Like to Give Back – “We’re pretty involved in our church and we like to get involved with the service aspects there. We do different habitat type builds and stuff like that, so it’s just getting your hands dirty and getting involved.”


Biggest Mistake Matt and Mike Have Made So Far In Real Estate – Rushed a Rehab


“I would say on 16-unit deal … We basically rehabbed all 16 units; some of them were floor-to-ceiling molds, a good majority of them were. We — I’m not going to say we cut corners, but we rushed the job in some areas, both with our repairs and with our tenant placement to get the thing up and running quicker than we needed to, and I would say that that probably cost us about six months of being at full stabilization, just because tenants were having to be evicted, repairs that we made weren’t holding up… So really going back and actually doing that right the first time would have saved us a lot of time and a lot of money.”


Click here to listen to my full interview with Matt and Mike and learn a unique way to pay your investor’s their preferred return

Joel Owens from JF1003: What the Big Box Companies Look for When They Lease Commercial Real Estate


Best Ever BookInvesting in Retail Properties by Gary Rappaport


Best Ever Deal Joel has Done – $410,000 commission from BiggerPockets


“On the brokering side, I have a client that contacted me off of BiggerPockets a couple years ago; he’s one of my higher end clients, and he bought two pieces of properties for about 22 million dollars, and I made about $410,000 in commission on that one.


Best Ever Way Joel Likes to Give Back – BiggerPockets forums


“I’m a moderator in Bigger Pockets, I’ve known Josh since he started the site a long time ago; we’ve got over 730,000 members now, and I’ve got about 12,000 posts on there, and I usually go on there … I don’t have time to help everybody individually because I’m working with my clients and my own investments, developing deals for myself, but if I can put something on there and then it can stay on there 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and thousands and thousands of people can read it… So I’ll usually try to answer questions or put information on there that people find useful.”



Biggest Mistake Joel Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Purchasing Multifamily from Fraudulent Owner


“There was one deal one time, it was a multifamily building that I bought, it was around 20 units, and it was an owner-financed deal. It was showing that the tenants were all paying, but the owner actually took a home equity line of credit out for their personal property, and they were putting that into the units. Only two were supposed to be vacant, 18 were supposed to be occupied, and you looked through the business bank statements and it was showing that 18 of them were paying, but found out post-closing that half that money was coming from the home equity line of credit. They were taking that and putting it in like they were collecting those rents from those tenants.”


“That is considered fraudulent, but an attorney told me that basically I could take him to court and we could spend a year, a year-and-a-half of my life on it, and even if I win and collected a judgement, I’d still have to chase him for the money. I lost about $15,000 on that and spent a lot of my time, effort and energy on it. But it was a good learning experience, and I just learned from that that the residential space – I hate dealing with those types of tenants every day; it’s just not my cup of tea. I just like retail, national tenants backed by thousands of stores; it’s more passive, I can be traveling, I can do whatever and I’m not worried about bigger headaches, residential landlord laws being changed more in favor of the tenants. When you get into business landlord law, it’s a lot more favorable to the landlord.”


What would Joel have done differently? – “I’m trying to figure out if someone’s doing something fraudulent. I think I should have looked at the records more; it was many years ago, I was just getting started, and you get excited when someone’s willing to owner-finance something. I should have looked at the purchase price I was paying more, and I should have conducted more tenant interviews, and I should have looked at these files that they presented with the leases and really saw what wasn’t there that should have been there as far as the quality of tenant and the income levels, and everything else… There were probably more red flags, but at that time I wasn’t as seasoned an investor, and so it goes back to it, again — if I had had someone looking at that asset for me that had that deeper level of experience, maybe I would have never gotten into that property in the first place, because they would have known to look for things that I didn’t know to look for at that time.”


“It’s the same principle with retail – if someone’s willing to buy something, they need to use somebody or go through someone that has that level of experience that sees a hundred things, versus the three things they might be looking at.”


Click here to listen to the full interview with Joel and learn how to lease property to large commercial tenants



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The One Characteristic Differentiating a Real Estate Pro and a Real Estate Rookie


What makes one real estate professional better than another real estate professional. For investors, this may be the most important questions we can answer.


Kim Ade, who is the President and founder of Frame of Mind Coaching and was recognized as one of North America’s Top 50 most influential women in real estate, has built a career around answering that question. She began investing in real estate, attending conference and events, and coaching investors in order to learn what drives the best real estate professionals.


In our recent conversation, Kim provided the insights she discovered by studying the top performing real estate and business professionals.


If I were to ask you, “what do you think makes for a top performing real estate investor?” Are they good at building rapport? Closing deals? Identifying different options available on both the buyer and seller side? Something else?


According to Kim’s studies, while all these skills are important, they are not critical. What’s really critical is if a person has a high degree of emotional resilience.


Kim said, “As a real estate professional, if you lose a deal, what do you do when that happens? And even as an investor, what do you do when you lose a deal? What do you do when a deal goes south? What do you do when you’re actually losing money on a deal? What do you do? How do you bounce back from that?”


The professional who has the ability to bounce back with the greater speed and agility, meaning they have high emotional resilience, is much more likely to succeed.



Calculating Emotional Resilience


To determine a real estate professional’s or your own level of emotional resilience, analyze failures. It’s easy to remain resilient when things are going according to plan. But it’s the losses that allow us to determine someone’s ability to not only move on as opposed to wallowing in a defeat, but to also take a bad situation and turn it into an advantage.


For example, Kim said, “Years ago, we used to own this software company, and we went to our first ever trade show and FedEx didn’t deliver our booth. We were a little bit upset, because it was our first trade show, so how do you show up to a trade show and have a booth with no actual booth? There was nothing there, so what we did is we went to Walgreens in the states and we bought a board and some markers and some tape and we made a sign; the sign says ‘FedEx didn’t deliver our booth, so now we’re forced to give you 50% off just to attract your attention.’ Man, there were line-ups at that booth…”


Kim didn’t allow this failure to emotionally trigger her. Nor did she remain calm, chalk the tradeshow up as a loss, pack up what little materials she had, and go home. Instead, she went into brainstorming mode and was able to turn a potential devastating situation into a positive and profitable one. What would you have done?


Kim said, “you have to move on, and the faster you move on, the better. I will also say that if you can do something with your experience, turn it into a positive somehow, then not only are you just moving on, you’re leveraging it. You’re winning from it. You’re not just losing and learning a tough lesson. You’re actually winning.”


The idea is that no matter what, there is always a silver lining. But many people aren’t used to looking for it. Most people just assume a silver lining or opportunity doesn’t exist. But from Kim’s experience, and my personal experience, that just isn’t true.


How do you look at things in this silver lining and always seeking out the opportunity way?


When Kim teaches people to make this mindset shift, she said “number one is we look at their history. There’s a philosophy and the philosophy is this – we always look for evidence to support our beliefs… One of the things we do is we help someone look backwards and we say, ‘look at all the things that have happened and let’s look at how they showed up.’ We’ll start to show people that they have been involved in a huge number of opportunities over time, but they never thought of it quite that way.”


The other thing, Kim said, is looking “at how so many awesome things happen to you all the time, every single day, that we just take for granted. Like this morning – did you have a hot shower? You probably did, and you don’t kind of stop and take notice. Or if you go into a building and you go up in the elevator, do you know how much planning went into that elevator or you, how many people were involved in creating the building, creating the structure that allowed you to get into that elevator that day? We don’t think of getting into an elevator as an opportunity, but it’s pretty massive.”


It’s about going from a limited mindset to an abundance mindset. We don’t live in a zero-sum world. There are infinite numbers of opportunities, but if you’re stuck in a limited frame of mind, you just don’t see them.


Make the shift!


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Happy Memorial Day! The Best Ever Advice from 5 Military Veterans

In honor of Memorial Day, here are 5 pieces of best ever advice from five military veterans I’ve interviewed on my show.

Mark Allen from JF930: Recession-Proof? Why You MUST Diversify Your Assets


Mark served in the US Army as a Field Artillery Office where he led troops in Operation Enduring Freedom.


Mark is a brokers and real estate investor who focuses on single-family rental portfolios around the country and multifamily in Texas and Oklahoma.


Mark’s Best Ever Advice?


“Diversification. It’s what I push now to multifamily owners if I have a single-family portfolio listing.”


“My dad put all of his eggs into one basket in 2004 through 2006 and ended up getting caught with his pants down with several loans on the books. That was a lesson I learned from him and luckily I didn’t have to learn from myself.”



Bill Allen from JF905: Flying Planes, Flipping Houses, and Hiring the Right People


Bill is an active duty Navy pilot and actually fell into real estate investing due to his constant military moves.


In 2016, Bill flipped 13 houses and wholesaled 54 deals while still working full-time.


Bill’s Best Ever Advice?


“To take really fast action and implement. I’m an implementer. I got this idea in January of last year and I just ran with it. The reason I think I was successful is because I took action and implemented it and did the things that other people won’t do.”


“It’s a little bit risky. If it doesn’t work out and I say, ‘Hey, I didn’t have my mind made up that I would continue and quit,’ I could have lost $20,000, but I went in knowing that.”


“I don’t think there’s a lot of risk to it. If you take action – risk is that you’re afraid to fail and then you fail and then you quit. If you just don’t quit – you’re going to fail. Just accept it and don’t do the same thing again.”



Jimmy and Bob Vreeland from JF872: How to SCALE a Private Money Raising Empire and JF786: Over 100 Properties Acquired in 12 MONTHS from LEASE OPTION Masters


Jimmy and Bob are graduated of the United States Military Academy at West Point and the Air Force Academy respectively,


They currently have over 100 properties in their portfolio under lease option.


Jimmy and Bob’s Best Ever Advice? Click here to learn how to acquire over 100 properties in 24 months utilizing the lease-option strategy.



Shawn Petree from JF464: How He Bought Two 12-plexes with NONE of His Own Money


Shawn Petree was in the military, on the construction side, for 10 years in both the Army and the Air Force.


Since he began investing in 1997, he has closed over 350 transactions on all types of properties.


Shawn’s Best Ever Advice?


“Always have an exit strategy.”


“When you get a house, you need to know what you are going to do with it. Most people go into fix-and-flips thinking they are going to fix and flip it and sometimes the market will change on you and you can’t sell something if there is a downturn. The lesson I’ve learned over time is to find a property, flip a property first, if you can’t flip it, fix it and fill it.”



Scott Lewis from JF965: Why He SOLD All He Had, Went to War, then Returns to Develop Land and Syndicate BIG Deals


Scott served as an active duty Infantry Office in the US Army where he deployed as an Infantry Platoon Leader in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.


Scott co-founded Spartan Investment Group, which completed 4 projects totaling $2.5M with an average ROI of 36% in 24 months.


Scott’s Best Ever Advice?


“The best advice is broken down into two categories. One is just starting out, and if you’re just starting out, take some time to learn yourself before you start. There’s some personality assessments out there… DISC and Myers-Briggs are two that are out there. I really recommend you go out and you figure out what type of personality you are. Then once you figure out what type of personality, build your tribe around your weaknesses.”


“Myself, I’m a DISC D, that means I’m a driver – I just want to get stuff done, I don’t really pay attention to details. So I went out and I found a partner who is very into details and he’s very detail-oriented. The two of us, plus a couple other members of our team kind of really round that out.”


“Once you figure out your team, then start with an education period. Just figure out what asset class you want to focus on, and then go. For those of us that have been out there and have been in the trenches, constantly challenge your assumptions and operating models.”


“We recommend a devil’s advocate. The Israeli Mossad, which is their version of the CIA, they call that the 10th man. This person is just the person on the team that disagrees with everything that’s going on. What that does is it ensures that groupthink doesn’t cause you to make a bad decision.”



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Friday Facts – Best Real Estate Investing Advice Ever Lightning Round Q&A

Learn this week’s Best Ever guest’s best ever books, real estate deals, ways to give back and biggest mistakes


Joel Sherlock from JF993: How to Build a Fund and Buy BIG Deals in Many Markets


Best Ever BookThe Saint, the Surfer, and the CEO by Robin Sharma


Best Ever Deal Joel has Done – “I would say that the first time I ever sold my renovation and bought my next flip. I thought I was a genius.”


Best Ever Way Joel Likes to Give Back – Charity work


“I sit on the board of a children’s charity in Vancouver. We have medical needs disabilities children’s camps. It’s call the Zajac Ranch. Amazing work. I love to be involved in that. Love giving back.”


Biggest Mistake Joel Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Rushed Due Diligence


“Not enough due diligence. Blinded by excitement.”


“Taking pressure from … another agent on the other side. On the surface, it’s like, ‘Hey that’s a great deal. Well you need to make your mind up quick because we have a bunch of other people looking at it. We just ripped through the due diligence really fast and it was a big house. There was a lot of value to it. It was a flip that we did. Luckily, we got our money back, but it was just a far larger project than we initially thought and a traditional due diligence period would have found that.”


Click here for the full interview and learn how to build a buying fund of over $2 million


Kevin Carroll from JF994: Investing with Your Mastermind Network, Leveraging REALTORS, and a Road Trip with Contractors


Best Ever BookRich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki


Best Ever Deal Kevin has Done – “Double landed a piece of land here in Idaho. Made an $80,000 commission check. That was pretty nice.”


Double landed means Kevin “represented the buyer and the seller.”


Best Ever Way Kevin Likes to Give Back – Educating others


“By writing the book [A Journey to Financial Independence] and doing podcasts like this, I really hope to show people, your listeners and people out there that this is an amazing industry that we’re in, and I think that we all have a responsibility to figure out a way to become what I like to call a “one hundred percenter”, so have your passive investments – have them pay more to you every month than you need to live. I want to teach people how to do that so that they don’t have to work anymore.”


Biggest Mistake Kevin Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Overestimating the sales price and rehab budgets


“Usually, when we make mistakes we overestimate what we can sell it for; we think we’ll sell it for 200k and it really sells for 180k. And we underestimate what the repairs are going to be – that’s probably the easiest thing to get away from you. If you have a $30,000 budget and you spend 50k – that’s obviously a problem. But it’s very easy to do, so that’s probably the hardest thing, to stay in budget.”


Click here for Kevin’s full interview and learn how to increase your business through a mastermind group and leveraging other realtors

Leonard Spoto from JF995: Defer Your Taxes with the 1031 Exchange!


Best Ever BookOlivia the Pig by Ian Falconer (reading it to his daughter!)


Best Ever Way Leonard Likes to Give Back – Donating to Charity


“We donate to a couple of really good causes that are near and dear to our heart. Hydrocephalus Foundation is one of them, and the Ronald McDonald Fund.”


Biggest Mistake Leonard Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Ineffective communication


“Not effectively communicating. You think everybody is on the same page, and this just happened to me the other day, where you think everybody is on the same page, but they’re not… So aligning everybody’s goals and making sure everybody understands the goals and making sure that you understand what you think your partners are going to be doing.”


Click here for the full interview to learn how to defer capital gains taxes

Dawn Rickagaugh from JF996: How to Buy, Hold, and Sell Seller Financed NOTES


Best Ever BookCourse in Miracles by Helen Schucman


Best Ever Deal Dawn has Done – “Buying a non-performing diverse note that was in second position for $10,000 and nine months later getting $80,000 when it paid off.”


Best Ever Way Dawn Likes to Give Back – Homes for the less fortunate and educating other investors


“Creating homes for families who are shut out of the system. They don’t have all cash, they can’t get a bank loan, but they still need stability for our communities and they need a home for the family. So that owner carry thing that I help make happen in my own backyard – that makes me feel good.”


“Also sharing information, so people get inspired to do this in their own communities and create those financial solutions just one moment pop to another.”


Biggest Mistake Dawn Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Unfounded trust


“Trusting a title company to do the right paperwork, to do it right, and then finding out they didn’t, and then I just want to hit myself.”


To mitigate the risk, “I read things. I take responsibility for all the documentation and paperwork, the due diligence. I kind of read stuff; just sort of reading things.”


Click here for the full interview and learn how to invest in notes via seller financing



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That all helps a lot in ranking the show and would be greatly appreciated. And if you have any comments or questions, leave a comment below. Or comment what is your best ever book, personal growth experience, deal, way to give back, or biggest mistake?


Friday Facts – Best Real Estate Investing Advice Ever Lightning Round Q&A

Learn this week’s Best Ever guest’s best ever books, real estate deals, ways to give back and biggest mistakes


Quincy Long from JF986: How and Why You Would Leverage Other People’s IRA and Cash


Best Ever BookRich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki


Best Ever Deal Quincy has Done – Turning Down a $2.5 Million Offer and Pursuit of a $10 Million Sale


“Well, I hope the best deal I’ve ever done is participated in a different real estate transaction, where we bought 196 acres on Maui for $900,000 cash from a bankruptcy estate, which we got a 2,5 million dollar offer before we closed on the property, and turned it down because we think we may be able to sell if for maybe 10 million or more. So that isn’t completed yet, but I believe it’s going be one of my biggest investments with the dollar return for effort hour.”


“[Our projected hold period is] Up to five years for that kind of property. We’re going to market it to the ultra-wealthy. There’s a lot of Chinese and other Asians that visit Hawaii, so that’s the target. There’s some movie stars and what not that have property in the same area, but it’s also a good property for eco-tourism. Just fantastic waterfalls and caves… Probably for the holding period we’ll do some eco-tourism to pay the costs of the property until we can find the correct ultra-wealthy buyer that can write a check between 10-20 million dollars. That’s the plan at this point.”


“[To find potential buyers], we’re at the end of this month or in the month of April sending a professional film crew out to document and film the property, because it’s kind of a rugged piece of property, you can imagine that of course. And then there are sites that are catering to the ultra-wealthy type properties, the trophy properties, if you will. So there’ll be a large internet marketing campaign specifically to target the ultra-wealthy individuals that might be able to afford such a property.”



Best Ever Way Quincy Likes to Give Back – Helping Others Decrease Their Taxes Owed


“What I do every day… Somebody asked me a question recently – if I was rich enough to retire, what would I do? I said I’d educate people about self-directed IRAs, of course, because I actually enjoy doing that and I think it’s important. I’ve just finished my estimated taxes before I’m going to Europe – tomorrow, actually – for three weeks… And I’ve finished my estimated taxes and looked at the dollar amount that I’m going to have to pay as an estimate, and I just got sick to my stomach and I thought “I need to do everything I can…” I’m all for paying your taxes that you owe, but no more than that. I don’t want people to be a tax donator, as I call them. When you do a deal that you could do tax-free, you’re a tax donator, and I just have a real problem with that, because I don’t think the government uses the money as wisely as I would if I had that money.”


“So again, I believe in paying my share of taxes, but not a single dollar more. I believe in that so much in fact, that teaching other people how to avoid paying taxes by using the government’s own rules that they laid out for us is almost like a mission to me. So that’s what I like to do to help people – teach them how to get out of paying taxes using the government’s own rules and following those rules.”


Biggest Mistake Quincy Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Failing to Perform Due Diligence on a Borrower


“Oh, that’s easy… I’ve made lots of mistakes. And yes, I’ve been very successful, but anybody that tells you that they’ve never made a mistake has either never done a deal or they’re lying. I would have to say, again, because I do a lot of note deals, my biggest mistake was doing a deal where I did plenty of due diligence on the property, but not enough due diligence on the person that was borrowing the money in that case. I always make the strong suggestion that anything you’re doing, you do due diligence on the deal itself, but most importantly you do due diligence on the people.”


“I failed to do that, frankly… So I had a great and perfectly valid hard money loan out of my account from the perspective of the property, and we ended up foreclosing on it and it’s been a great rental, and we’re getting ready to sell it after a couple of years of renting it. But four days after the buy borrowed my $200,000, he turned around and went to a different title company and borrowed another $215,000 on a property worth about 270k. Then he also sold it at a third title company ten days later for — I don’t remember the number, but he took a $45,000 down payment… And I found out later he had partners at the foreclosure sale where he bought the property for $100,000, so he took like half a million dollars from people on a property that he had a net of $100,000 in. Basically, after all of this broke and I ended up foreclosing on the property and did due diligence on the individual, I found pretty strong evidence that he’s a crook.”


“Had I known that, of course I would not have made the deal in the first place. I think that’s my biggest mistake and my biggest learn – you have to do due diligence both ways: people involved, as well as the property or the deal itself. And that’s true for real estate, it’s true for notes, it’s true for private types of investments like limited partnerships, stuff like that as well.”


Click here to listen to my full interview with Quincy to learn how to use other people’s money to invest in deals.


Marina Sud from JF987: How Her Attorney Scored her BIG CASH by Noticing this Minor Detail


Best Ever BookHarry Potter by J.K. Rowling


Best Ever Deal Marina has Done – $60,000 profit on a Hoarder’s Home


Best Ever Way Marina Likes to Give Back – “Donate with every closing to animal shelters and breast cancer research.”


Biggest Mistake Marina Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Counting Eggs Before They Hatch


“Just thinking that it’s all done before you’re closed… Counting the money in your pocket when there’s none.”


“[My lesson learned is to] just kind of relax and breather and just let it go. It happens when it happens.”


Click her to listen to my full interview with Marina to learn how to build the best real estate team.


Jack Petrick from JF988: Why FREE Advice Could be the Most EXPENSIVE Advice


Best Ever BookRich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki


Best Ever Deal Jack has Done – Ten Homes for $4,000 to $5,000 Each


“A lot of them. Really, honestly, the last ten houses I’ve picked up for like 4k and 5k each, I would say they were pretty much the best deals I’ve ever got.”


Best Ever Way Jack Likes to Give Back – Educating and Mentoring Other Investors


“Teaching knowledge. I have so many people that I’ve mentored and I’ve provided my playbook, my handbook on how to do this, where it took me 15 years of mistakes to get to those points. My brother right now has done a second house, a total rehab in two months, and right on budget… I just love being able to mentor and provide those services to others, and be able to help people have a better lifestyle.”


Biggest Mistake Jack Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Saving Money to Lose Money


“Bending over to pick up nickels when dollars go over your head… Meaning trying to save money, but in the end you’re really hemorrhaging out more money than you’re saving by trying to do work yourself, by trying to bring in your own crew to do all the work at $10/hour labor versus getting professional tradesmen in. That’s a mistake. Hire the right people to do the job and get it done right, because in the long run it’s gonna cost you less money and you’ll have a better quality of like and experience. Pay for it when you need to.”


Click here for a summary of Jack’s Best Ever advice: Why Free Advice Can Be the Most Expensive Advice for Real Estate Investors


John Roy from JF989: How to Save Paradise and Put Up a Parking Lot…and Garages for BIG MONEY


Best Ever BookThe Fish That Ate the Whale by Rich Cohen


Best Ever Deal John has Done – Over $10 million Profit on Turnkey Parking Garage


“Downtown Cincinnati. We took an old mall, we converted into a parking garage. Purchased it for $14.5 million approximately, and when I said “we purchased it”, we helped that real estate group buy it. Now potentially worth $25-28 million, two years later.”


“It was already done. It was turnkey.”


Best Ever Way John Likes to Give Back – Educating Others on Parking Garage Investing


“I like to volunteer my expertise in parking. Like I said, it’s a difficult field to get into, but I will always take calls and give people advice. They’re free to call me on my cell phone and I’ll walk them through a process, I have no problem doing that.”


Biggest Mistake John Has Made So Far In Real Estate – “Partnering up with a developer where you contribute the land and they don’t contribute enough equity themselves. We will never do that again.”


Click here to listen to my full interview with John to learn all the ins and outs of parking garage investing



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That all helps a lot in ranking the show and would be greatly appreciated. And if you have any comments or questions, leave a comment below. Or comment what is your best ever book, personal growth experience, deal, way to give back, or biggest mistake?


Why Free Advice Can Be the Most Expensive Advice for Real Estate Investors


You just finished reading Rich Dad, Poor Dad, attended your first real estate seminar, or had some other introduction into real estate investing. You are extremely excited for the potential of achieving financial independence or growing your own business empire with real estate. And you want to scream it from the rooftops.


The next time you see your family or friends, you bring up your new aspirations and what do they say? “Investing in real estate? That’s risky!” and “Ew. Why would you want to be a landlord and clean toilets?” and “my uncle invested in real estate and lost everything when the market crashed. I’d avoid real estate like the plague” and on and on.


Can you relate to this experience?


Since these people should know us the most, are closest to us, and love us dearly, how much weight should we give to their advice and criticism?


The answer like most things in life is it depends.


Jack Petrick, who has been a full-time investor for 15 years, faced this dilemma when he first started, and continues to face it to this day. In our recent conversation, he explained how this “free advice” can end up being the most expensive advice you receive.


Jack’s Best Ever advice is that free advice is expensive advice. “There’s a lot of people that have opinions on what we do,” Jack said.  “There’s just a lot of naysayers that don’t have necessarily the experience to be able to provide an input or opinion in your life if this is what you want to do.”


The most expensive free advice that I can think of would be to not invest in real estate at all! Another example would be passing up on an extremely lucrative deal because you were talked out of it by your mother.


Maybe free advice isn’t the best term. There are a lot of free resources (podcasts, webinars, YouTube videos, etc.) that offer sound real estate advice. I think “unfounded advice” rings truer. If you were to have a health issue, for example, you wouldn’t ask a family or a friend for medical advice (unless they were a doctor, nurse, etc.). You would ask a professional who has experience diagnosing and treating medical issues. The same logic should apply to real estate investing, and business in general, as well.


Personally, some of the worst investment advice I’ve gotten is from family members, who should know me the best. Fortunately, I didn’t act on that advice, and that’s how I’ve gotten to where I am at today. However, I did take some advice from them on other things and it has helped me out. We’ve got to be able to distinguish between the good and the bad when it comes to the advice provided by those with minimal to no real estate experience, and especially if they are loved ones since there’s emotions involved.


When asking for real estate investment advice, Jack says, “I would just really vet out the experience of those people that are providing that advice.” To add to that, I would say to find out how much experience they have in the niche you want to pursue. It’s important to get advice from people who have done what you are currently doing, and even better, are still currently in that niche.


For example, if you want to raise money from private investors and buying large multifamily buildings, you will likely receive better advice from a multifamily syndicator with hundreds of transactions compared to a fix-and-flipper, a syndicator with no deals, or your uncle Bob.


Additionally, certain advice may be good or bad depending on what stage of the process you are in. You can get the same advice, but it can be either good or bad depending on where you’re at in your business cycle. In the beginning stages of your career, for example, you can afford to have a more aggressive business plan. But 20 years later, when you are approaching retirement, you will likely have a more conservative approach.  Also, if you are a brand-new investor who is single, you can likely take more risks compared to the brand-new investor who is married with four children.


Overall, when actively asking for and passively receiving advice, it’s important to pay attention to who is giving that advice and understanding if they have the expertise to back it up.



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How to Double Your Rental Income with Furnished Rentals


In 2016, furnished rentals collected $3.2 billion per month in rents across the United States.


I bet that piqued your curiosity! Peaked


For example, there are 100,000 to 200,000 traveling nurses per year in the United States. They work for 6 to 12 months on a contract basis before picking up and moving to another part of the county. That’s 100,000 to 200,000 candidates for a furnished rental, and it’s just one example.


Kimberly Smith has been involved in the furnished rental business for over 20 years, way before popular businesses like AirBnB were founded. In our recent conversation, she gave us an inside look at how to run a successful furnished rental business. This business model is relevant to a single-family investor, an investor with a 1000-unit apartment building, and everyone in-between.


How to Find Tenants?


Marketing for tenants for a short-term, furnished rental is different than finding a standard renter.


One way to find tenants is through old-fashioned relationship building. The idea is to find a large corporation or institution to tap into. For example, you could reach out to a nearby university’s student housing department, a hospital’s housing coordinator, or a corporation’s human resources manager and ask if they are in need of short-term housing.


Kimberly said when she searches for potential tenants, “I would do old-fashioned request proposals with major corporations, and they would say, ‘Okay, I need 103 one-bedrooms for 6-months. Can you get them all ready for me?’”


Fortunately, with the advent of the Internet, finding tenants is much easier than the old-school cold-calling of the past. There are distribution portals online you can leverage. Example of these distribution portals, Kimberly said, “You’ve got HomeSuite, you’ve got AirBnB, you’ve got Booking.com, you’ve got HomeAway. All these guys are just starting to think, ‘How do we best service the needs of the business traveler?’ So in the short run, you want to be in all those places.”


Another great resource is a creation of Kimberly’s called Corporate Housing By Owner. “For the last 8 years, Corporate Housing By Owner has created an annual report,” Kimberly said. “You can get it on Amazon.com or you can register for free at CorporateHousingByOwner.com and you can download it for free. And it will tell you – we asked hundreds of people across the country, ‘How do you market your furnished rentals and where do you get your best results from?’ We have 8 years of data in that report and [you should] start by just reading the details.”


Who Manages the Furnished Units?

When comparing management of unfurnished vs. furnished rentals, Kimberly provided an analogy of a tortoise and a hare. “In unfurnished property management, you are the tortoise – you are renting a property for a year, and if your kitchen has a leak, you report it and they come out in the next week and they’re going to fix it for you.” For furnished rentals, Kimberly said, “If I’m there for 30, 60, 90 days and there’s something wrong, I need you to deal with that [right away].”


Therefore, the furnished property manager is going to have a level of involvement that far exceeds that of the standard, unfurnished property manager. As a result, you are going to pay a premium. Kimberly said, “for corporate housing, an Avenue West managed corporate housing brokerage (Kimberly’s company) would charge between 25%-35%, depending on the market. If it’s a corporation, it’s paying rents via credit card. Avenue West is incurring that expense, and not passing that on to the owner. They’re doing all the key arrivals. They are doing whatever background checks are necessary. They’re doing all of that service for that corporate tenant. They have extensive software to do the invoicing and such that’s necessary as part of that whole thing. And they’re building relationships. [The owner is] working with a management company that doesn’t say, ‘Oh, I hope to find you a corporate housing rental.’ [They’re] dealing with an Avenue West company who’s been around for 18 years, developing these relationships, that says, ‘Hey, these are the corporations that work with me every day.’”


Most unfurnished property managers do not understand corporate housing. Therefore, Kimberly recommends finding a property management company, like Avenue West, that specializes in furnished rentals. “I would be a little wary in just handing a furnished rental that you’re expecting to get a business client into an unfurnished property management because they don’t really understand how to find that right tenant.”


How Much Money do Furnished Rentals Make?


To determine the rates you can charge for furnished/corporate rentals, Kimberly said, “You want to look at the extent of stays in your neighborhood. You want to look at the hotel rates in your neighborhood. You may even be able to find exact corporate housing rates in your neighborhood.”


According to Kimberly, the average daily rate for a one-bedroom corporate housing rental was $150 in 2016. However, this varies from market to market, so in some markets it will be higher and in others, lower. Kimberly said, “You have to understand your individual market and figure out where you fit. And you can purchase something called Corporate Housing Industry Report, which this year is a 206-page document that goes through all major metropolitan state areas and looks at … the average rent that was collected last year on a studio, on a one-bedroom [and] on a two-bedroom.”


For example, Kimberly said in Arizona, an unfurnished, one-bed unit will rent for $750 a month, but the same unit furnished will rent for $2,500. Whereas in other locations, like San Francisco in 2016, an unfurnished unit rents for more than a furnished rental. It is very market dependent. Kimberly’s recommendation is to look at the Corporate Housing Industry report to see if corporate housing is an effective business model in your area.


For a personal example, I currently own a four-bed single-family property in Dallas, TX. It currently rents of $1,200 a month. Kimberly said if I furnished the unit and offered it as a corporate rental, I could get $4,100 a month in rent. Knocking off the 35% management fee, that’s $2,665 a month, which is more than double the rent I am charging now!




Furnished, corporate rentals are a $3.2 billion a month industry and is relevant to investors in all niches.


To find tenants for furnished rentals, build relationships with local corporations, hospitals, and universities, or post a listing to any number of distribution portals like AirBnB.


To manage the furnished rentals, hire a property management company who specializes in corporate rentals. However, expect to pay 25% to 35% in management fees.


Depending on your market, the increase in cash flow from converting an unfurnished unit into a furnished unit will more than cover the increase in management and other expenses. However, before pursuing furnished rentals, determine the rental demand in your area.


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Friday Facts – Best Real Estate Investing Advice Ever Lightning Round Q&A

Learn this week’s Best Ever guest’s best ever books, real estate deals, ways to give back and biggest mistakes


Todd Tresidder from JF979: Why He Went Through FIVE Property Managers in FOUR Years


Best Ever BookThe War of Art by Steven Pressfield


Best Ever Deal Todd has Done – $800 Tax Lien


“Tax lien deal. I got a perfectly rentable house – it’s not a great value; it was probably worth 60-80k, and I think I was into it for about $800 in back taxes. That was obviously the best deal ever.”


Best Ever Way Todd Likes to Give Back – Educating Other Investors


“Through education, the business I’m doing. I love sharing my knowledge and sharing it at cost-efficient price points so people get more value than they pay for. I love the difference it makes in people’s lives. There’s not a week that goes by that somebody doesn’t write an e-mail telling me how I changed their lives.”


Biggest Mistake Todd Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Out-of-town investing


“Buying out of town, hands down. I did 9 things out of 10 right, and I did that one wrong (i.e. going through 5 property managers in 4 years). I was warned, I’d read it, but I just thought that there’s got to be a way to find an honest property manager. Luckily, I did find one [soon] enough to turn it around and sell it, but basically buying out of town is just so inefficient… It’s really hard.”


Click here to listen to Todd’s full interview and see how he overcame multiple corrupt property managers

Whitney Nicely from JF980: How She Became the MILLENNIAL MILLIONAIRE NEXT DOOR


Best Ever BookShoemaker of Dreams: the Autobiography of Salvatore Ferragamo


Best Ever Deal Whitney has Done – $9,000 profit on a $3,000 house


“I had a house… It was a three-bedroom, two-bath, and the backside of it had caught on fire a number of years ago, and I had it under contract for a lease option for $6,000 with $100 and $200/month paid off whenever it was I paid off $6,000, so 5-6 years at $200/month.”


“I sold it on a lease option for $12,000, with $5,000 down and $300/month. So I bought it for $6,000, I sold it for $12,000. This morning I was talking to my seller and he was like, ‘Well, what if we didn’t do the lease option? How much would you give me just to cash it out?’ and I said, ‘I could give you 3k,’ and he said ‘Okay, fine.’ So now I bought the house, people gave me 5k, I’m giving it to my seller, and I get to keep 2k, and now I’m cash-flowing $300/month on a $7,000 balance.”


Best Ever Way Whitney Likes to Give Back – Tithing and sponsorship


“I tithe to my church and I sponsor the youth groups trips – mission trips, fun trips, whatever.”


Biggest Mistake Whitney Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Winging it on her first investment


“I paid $20,000 for one of my first houses with cash, my life savings, and we get to the closing table, the seller shook my hand and he said ‘Thank goodness you bought this, because no other investor in town offered me this much money.’”


“That’s how new I was when I started and how clueless I was — I didn’t realize it didn’t have a central heating air unit; it didn’t have heat and air when I bought it. It also had old wiring – we had to redo that, and it was on a hill, and a part of the hill had given way, and the foundation was screwed up and we couldn’t do anything to it until we put three sides of the foundation back on, to the tune of about $10,000, and my brother’s sweat equity.”


Lesson Learned: “Don’t wing it… For crying out loud, when you’re putting offers in on houses, have a formula. I like to use ARV x 70% – Repairs… That’s the most cash I can give you. And probably on that house – I was probably in that formula, but I hadn’t planned on putting $50,000 of my own money into the house just to be able to rent it. Get a plan, find somebody to help you, [and] don’t just wing it. And those watch those TV shows, oh my gosh…!”


Click to read Whitney’s Best Ever Advice: How the Millennial Millionaire Next Door Finds Endless Streams of Deals


Mauricio Umansky from JF981: How He Controls 17% of the LA Market Share and Became #1


Best Ever BookDelivering Happiness by Toni Hsieh


Best Ever Deal Mauricio has Done – Selling the Playboy Mansion!


“I have two favorite deals. Number one was selling the Playboy Mansion – absolutely fantastic, the first deal to hit one hundred million dollars in Los Angeles. Number two is an investment I made in Malibu on a property that I just sold for 70 million dollars.”


“I received the listing of the Playboy Mansion by coming up with an amazing listing presentation and a full marketing plan, and all of my ads already done when I went in for the presentations. So I didn’t leave anything to chance. I already had the whole marketing campaign laid out as if I already had the listing.”


Best Ever Way Mauricio Likes to Give Back – Mistakes lead to opportunities


“I make mistakes all day long. I think that it’s not a question of what mistakes you make, it’s a question about mistakes lead to different opportunities and how you resolve mistakes.”


Biggest Mistake Mauricio Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Charity and homes for the needy


“We give back two different ways. On a personal note, I give back really to the Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles. I spent the first six years of my life in the Children’s Hospital, and thanks to them I got cured. And the second thing that we do as a company is we have a hundred percent participation in give-back homes. We build homes for the needy, and we love it.”


Click here to watch Mauricio’s full interview

Bruce Norris from JF982: When to Be AGGRESSIVE from an Investor of Over 2,000 DEALS


Best Ever BookThink and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill


Best Ever Deal Bruce has Done – Understanding when do something, along with how to


“I don’t know how to develop building lots. I don’t know how to look at a hill and say, ‘Gosh, we could carve that up,’ but there’s a project that I bought in 2002, close to Lancaster, somebody had paid three million dollars to create the lots; I paid $270,000 at 90% discount. They knew how to create the lots; I knew when to buy them. I would rather know when to, than how to, any day.”


“We built [on the lots]. We waited until 2004 to start the 93-house track. We were in kind of a remote area called Rosemont. At the end of our project, our land cost was 1% of our sale price. We sold them for $280,000.”



Best Ever Way Bruce Likes to Give Back


“I like our charity event, where we give back every year to the Children’s Hospital and Make-a-Wish.”


Biggest Mistake Bruce Has Made So Far In Real Estate


“In 1989 I bought seven custom home lots, because everything I touched at that time was working really well, and I still own those homes about two and a half years later, at a cost of $2,100/month. I made the payments, got myself out of it, but it taught me to understand that the ‘When to…’ part of it was really important.”


“The last house I closed in that cycle was I wrote a personal check for 62k to close the last one.”


“I was very happy to see that go. Here’s the good news about that – a lot of people had downturns in the last cycle… I stuck with it; I had a partner who left the country, so I had to finish the houses out of pocket. A lot of the partners couldn’t come up with any money at all, so I paid it all, even though the loans were in their name. What was great about that experience is that I had a $21,000/month extra overhead literally hit me in a 30-day period and went on for a long time… But because I decided to solve it, I had to learn to make 21k extra a month. In our industry you can do that. But after everybody was paid off, I still had the skill level to earn the money. That was actually the biggest reward.”


Click here to listen to Bruce’s full interview



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Friday Facts – Best Real Estate Investing Advice Ever Lightning Round Q&A

Learn this week’s Best Ever guest’s best ever books, real estate deals, ways to give back and biggest mistakes


Tony Javier from JF972: How to Flip Over 100 Homes a Year in OTHER MARKETS


Best Ever Book7 Habits of Highly Successful People by Stephen Covey


Best Ever Deal Tony has Done – Quick Flip and a $40,000 Wholesale Deal


“There’s two of them. One of them was a deal we made over 100k last year. it was a really quick flip. And actually, the best one we ever did was a wholesale deal – we bought it for 25k, cleaned it up, put it back on the market and sold it for 65k. We made 40k on a wholesale deal. There was only a $65,000 sale price.”


Best Ever Way Tony Likes to Give Back – Advice to New Investors


“I have a lot of people reach out to me that see my Facebook and my TV and stuff and say, ‘Hey, how do I get started?’ I used to blow those people off, and now, as long as I have the time and I can fit them in my schedule, I give people advice… Because the one thing — like I said, when I first got into it I was doing things on my own, so if I can have a quick conversation with someone and either help them avoid a mistake or help them to get started that much quicker, I don’t mind lending that little bit of advice based on my 16 years of experience.”


Biggest Mistake Tony Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Working with Awful Contractors


“I bought a property; I could have wholesaled it quickly and made 20k. Instead, I let my ego get a hold of me and said, ‘You know what? I can make 50k on this deal.’ Again, in Tampa, Florida. I had three bad contractors, ended up spending twice as much money on the project, ended up selling for $40,000 less than we anticipated, and ended up losing $65,000 on that deal.”


“It’s only one of four or five properties I’ve ever lost money on, and it was a huge learning lesson. I basically wrote a $65,000 check for a big learning lesson.”


Click here for Tony’s Best Ever advice: How to Successfully Market for Real Estate Leads with TV Commercials

Clay Malcolm from JF973: How to Make a Pot of Gold with Tax Advantages


Best Ever BookSpectrum of Consciousness by Ken Wilber


Best Ever Way Clay Likes to Give Back – Audiobooks for the Blind


“My favorite way is I have been involved with a company that reads textbooks onto tape, so that blind students can use those textbooks in their studies. I always thought that was cool.”


Biggest Mistake Clay Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Lack of Empowerment to take Action


“I would say not empowering myself to make a move… And I’ll go back to 2008 – I hadn’t practiced moving funds into different investments, and it stalled me. It was an interesting thing, it’s part of my psychology that if I haven’t done it before, it seems bigger than it would be, and if I had been more agile and thinking and been empowered already to make financial moves, I think I could have mitigated some of my losses. It didn’t work, but that was the lesson, for sure.”

Listen to Clay’s Full Interview about Self-Directed IRA Tax Advantages Here

Scott Carson from JF974: Take Notes about NOTES and Debt


Best Ever BookOutwitting the Devil by Napoleon Hill


Best Ever Deal Scott has Done – $12 Million in Notes for $1 Million


“I’ll say probably the biggest deal we’ve done individually – we bought a portfolio of 200+ assets that were worth about 12 million that we picked up for just over a million bucks. It’s been great, we’ve been modifying those loans, we had some that we foreclosed on, but it’s been a really growing period, going from buying one-off loans to small pools… That’s been one of our largest pools so far of assets that we’ve bought.”


What’s the number one risk in deals like that?


“The number one risk is not knowing our property values or checking taxes. There’s three things with notes that you’ve always got to double check. You’ve got to make sure your property values are accurate – and that doesn’t mean going by Zillow photos; that means literally having somebody drive by the property.”


“We made a mistake early on in our business where we trusted a realtor to drive by. She took great photos of three sides of the property, but she missed the big, gaping hole on the other side… So using realtors, making sure that we tell them, ‘Hey, please look at all sides.’ We want to make sure it’s a Blazing Saddles house. That’s the biggest thing, knowing your values.”


“Second thing is double-checking taxes. You’ve always got to double-check the taxes owed, and you want to make sure that the borrowers’ name on the note matches up with who’s on the county records. If it’s a different name, that property was probably going to tax sale and your note is now worthless.”


“And third thing is checking title. That’s pulling a title report, or as we call it, an O&E report – Ownership and Encumbrance Report is kind of a watered down title report that just shows us what the condition of the lien history is and if there’s anything else on title that might be blocking our ability to foreclose.”


“Those three things are the biggest things. Having your vendors in place is also critical. If you buy a lot of notes, you want to make sure you have your systems down, because you don’t want to sit around for 6-12 months figuring things out while your fruit is rotting on the vine”


Best Ever Way Scott Likes to Give Back – Charitable Donations and Free Educational Courses


“We have a big, big passion for two sets of individuals: we work a lot with young kids, we always like to donate to Toys For Tots at the end of the year, along with different children’s charities. We do a lot with a Fresh Start out in San Diego where they go out and perform surgeries for children with face deformities, and we also have a big passion for helping past and present military and first responders. We love working with those guys, whether it’s Wounded Warriors or other charities that help out with our past and present military.”


“We provide education classes for free to those guys, and just really love helping those out because they’ve done a big job in helping us have the freedoms that we have today.”


Biggest Mistake Scott Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Incorrect Expectations for Project Timelines


“I think probably a couple of those would be with our Chicago deals. We bought stuff and we foreclosed on stuff in Chicago before, around Chicago, Illinois… I would probably have talked to my attorneys a little bit more that were handling that foreclosure process and what they expected the timeframes to be, and double that timeframe. If they said six months, plan on a year; if they said a year, plan on two years.”


“We’re still going to come out making our money back and giving our investors a good return on their money, but some of the things that have happened up there have been outside of our control and outside of our trainees’ control. It’s just kind of ridiculous.”


Listen to Scott’s Full Interview About Buying Notes Here


Mark Kenney from JF975: Hotels and Multifamily Investing on a PASSIVE LEVEL


Best Ever BookRich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki


Best Ever Deal Mark has Done – Passing Two-Year Projection in Under a Year


“The one we closed on September 2016 in North Dallas. We already raised rents twice, already passed our year two projections, and it’s only been since September. That one I think is going to really be our best deal ever.”


Best Ever Way Mark Likes to Give Back – Providing Educational Opportunities and Supporting for the Disadvantaged


“We help educate people. We actually do some events here and there as well, and starting to do more of that. Anything we know, we’ll share; we don’t hold anything back, we don’t have any hidden agendas.”


“And then outside of real estate, we have a big passion for orphanages. My wife and I both support orphanages in Africa.”


“We also had a big passion and support people of sex traffic industry.”


Biggest Mistake Mark Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Misplaced Trust


“It’s really looking at the deal before the operator, maybe trusting the operator a little too much and not having an operator on the hotel example that really was experienced. Looking back on it, I would not have invested in it, the reason being that they didn’t have anyone else that had skin in the game with them. They had a so-called mentor that later we found out really was not a mentor and unfortunately has a lot of litigation against him.”


“But anyway, having somebody that’s side by side with the operator, with the lead, has done it before, has been there and can help them would probably be the biggest thing. Look for that first and foremost, and then look at the deal and see how it looks.”


Listen to Mark’s Full Interview About Passive Hotel and Multifamily Investing Here



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Friday Facts – Best Real Estate Investing Advice Ever Lightning Round Q&A

Learn this week’s Best Ever guest’s best ever books, real estate deals, ways to give back and biggest mistakes


Scott Lewis from JF965: Why He SOLD All He Had, Went to War, then Returned to Develop Land and Syndicate BIG Deals


Best Ever Book – “It’s Your Ship” by Michael Abrashoff


Best Ever Deal Scott has Done – Million Dollar Profit on DC Condo Conversion


“[My best deal] was the condo conversion. We’ve been working on that — our plans went in in June 2016, and we actually split those plans into foundation plans and building plans, so that we could go ahead and get started with all the underpinning and foundation work that we needed to do, while the set of building plans was running its course through the normal application process.”


“We got a pretty sweet deal on that. We worked on it for about 18 months, trying to track down the owner, and just a random, fortuitous meeting at a corner bakery with an attorney to talk about another project, he referenced having a client with a property on L Street, and we immediately knew who it was. We had talked to the owner a couple of times and she had told us that she had an attorney and we didn’t think that it was even remotely possible, but it turned out it did. The financials are pretty good, we’re going to be all-in at a million and out at 2.6 million.”


“We’re actually taking a single-family and we’re digging out underneath it and we’re adding a floor and a half, so when we’re done we’ll have four two-bedroom, two-bath condos. Three of them will be about 1,000 square feet, and the third one will be about 1,300 to 1,400 square feet.”


Best Ever Way Scott Likes to Give Back – “Mentoring and Education.”


Biggest Mistake Scott Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Missing out a Multimillion Dollar Profit on Church


“We had the opportunity to buy a church that was right behind where my partner and I lived when we were in DC, and at the time they needed two million bucks to make the deal work, and we were pretty novice and had no idea about raising money, and we’ve been able to raise two million dollars in like two hours over the last couple months… So that deal, the guy that bought it is building 36 units there that will probably have a sales price of probably 22 million dollars for that deal. We could have had it, but we didn’t know how to raise money.”


Aaron Hendon from JF966: How to Find a REALTOR to Sell Your Next Rehabbed Property ABOVE Asking Price


Best Ever Book – “The Undoing Project” by Michael Lewis


Best Ever Deal Aaron has Done (As a Realtor) – Helping Friends Close a Deal


“I have very good friends that I got to write an offer for… I’ve actually done this twice now with friends, but one where we went and saw the house – it was the second house they saw – we walked in, they loved it, there was already an inspection done. I called the realtor and I said ‘Hey, my clients really love this place. Do you have an offer?’ They said, ‘Yeah, well we’ve just sent our counter-offer back to them but it’s not signed yet.’ I said, ‘Okay, well if I wrote you an offer at this price, could it bump the one you have?’ They said, ‘Yes, it could…’”


“So we sat down at a coffee house, we wrote up that offer, got it to them, they rescinded their counter-offer and accepted our offer. So while that’s clearly some other realtor’s least-favorite deal, that was my favorite. I loved being able to do that.”


Best Ever Way Aaron Likes to Give Back – Volunteering


“I do work with a company called Landmark Worldwide. It’s a company that’s committed to transformational leadership and transformational educational in the world, and I’ve been participating and leading programs with them for about 20 years. It’s a volunteer process for me, but man, to watch people step beyond who they know themselves to be and into a world where they become leaders in their own life… There’s just nothing like that.”


Biggest Mistake Aaron Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Failing to Conduct a Final Walkthrough with a Client


“There was [a deal] last year where I had this great client, I totally loved them – and they did love me, up until this – and the deal was sort of closed way too quickly. It was out of protocol; the whole thing was out of protocol. They were using Bank of America, which if I could make sure that none of your investors ever use the big banks, it would make me thrilled and happy.”


“So they were using a big bank, and I knew it, it was a problem all the way through the deal. The deal finally got approved and was ready to close on a Friday, and my client e-mailed me and said, ‘Can I please, please, please, please get in there this weekend? Can we close today?’ and I said ‘Yes,’ and I should have said, ‘Well, we really do need to do a walkthrough, which could postpone the close until Monday… But we should do a walkthrough. How do you want to do it?’ – and I didn’t say that, I just said yes.”


“We went ahead and closed, and then we did the walkthrough and the seller had left just a ton of stuff all over the house, and while I paid for the cleaner, I got it all cleaned up, my client was just heartbroken. They had gotten a house that was just so poorly maintained, and it all could have been avoided had I done the walkthrough, had I done what I know to do. They won’t use me again, it was a tough deal to put together, but I didn’t do what I know to do at the end, and it was just a shame. It was really disappointing.”


Related: Aaron’s Best Ever Advice – How to Find a “Commission-Free” Real Estate Agent


Susan Eilya from JF967: Why You Should Use Your REALTOR to Manage Your Rehabs


Best Ever Book – “Chase the Lion” by Mark Batterson


Best Ever Deal Susan has Done – Two Identical Properties Closing this Month


“[Two deals] that I’m going to close … on this month. On one I received two offers that went over the list price, and the second-place guy felt like he lost out, but instead I was able to come to him and tell him I have an identical property that I was going list that next week.”


“I was generally more excited for the second buy than he probably was, but I loved knowing that I could help him out, help veterans out and also put a deal under contract in zero days.”


Best Ever Way Susan Likes to Give Back – Tithing and Day-to-Day Giving Back


“I feel like a lot of times we wait until something happens before we can give back; I don’t need to wait until my career has hit a certain number or mark to give back. We can give back daily, which is what I do, whether it’s helping someone learn this business and make a little extra on the side, or whether it’s me tithing to support my friend in the Congo who’s taking care of the much less fortunate… I’m grateful I can do something to help.”


“I give back every day by doing what I do, which is why I love this business – I create jobs, I make homes beautiful, again… They were once beautiful and I’m making them beautiful again and I help new owners create beautiful communities.”


Biggest Mistake Susan Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Sooner, Rather than Later


“Well, the biggest mistake I was thinking would just be not to start sooner, but I can’t really focus on that because I’m here now, and I’m making the best of it. But if there’s a mistake… There’s always hurdles in this business, you just have to adjust to them. I guess for me maybe just this one deal – I took the owner’s report for the sewer, instead of doing my own sewer scope, and then I had to kind of change it.”


“After the whole project was done, the new buyers did a sewer scope and there was a crack, and I had to spend another $10,000 to fix it and change it. Maybe that one… I mean, there were still profits in the deal, and that’s 10k out of my pocket; my investors made every dime that they were promised… But maybe just not getting that sewer scope done sooner.”

David Parnes and James Harris from JF968: Million Dollar Listing Stars Began Broke Knocking on Doors


Best Ever Book – “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory”


Best Ever Deal David and James have Done – “The Hustler Building on Sunset Boulevard”


Best Ever Way David and James Like to Give Back – Animals and Homes for Families in Need


David: “I like to donate to animals, that’s where my heart lies. Because I don’t have kids at the moment, I have a lot of dogs, so for me it’s animals… And we also do give-back homes; we actually help families in need build houses, which is with an incredible organization that the agency is very strongly associated with.”


Biggest Mistake David and James Have Made So Far In Real Estate – Spending Too Much on a Website


James: “Our website – we spent an absolute fortune on creating our website, and then the reality of the world, we really didn’t need to go all out. But you learn from your mistakes. We were trying to launch our business and brand our business, and we probably spent $60,000 on a website, which in hindsight was a mistake. But you learn from your mistakes.”


Click Here to watch the full interview with James and David



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commission free

How to Find a “Commission-Free” Real Estate Agent

What if you could have all the advantages of a real estate agent without paying a commission fee?


Aaron Hendon, who is a 5-Star Realtor with Keller-Williams Greater Seattle, says you can! In our recent conversation, he explained how to find a realtor that can sell your property above asking price in order to cover the agent commission.


Best Ever Advice?


Aaron’s Best Real Estate Investing Advice Ever is “get a good realtor partner.”


“Don’t go cheap when it comes time to find the professional that’s going to sell that home,” he said. “A good realtor, and if you interview a realtor well, he should be able to get you more money at sale than doing it yourself or doing it with a discount broker.”


You may be thinking, well Joe, of course I want to find a great realtor, but I’d still have to pay the 3% commission right? Technically, the answer is yes. However, there is a caveat.


Aaron said, “You can absolutely find realtors whose list-price-to-sell price ratio is high enough to cover their commission.”


What is the List-Price-to-Sale-Price Ratio?


The list-price-to-sale price ratio calculates how much an agent sells a property for compared to the list price. For example, if a realtor’s ratio is 100%, then on average, they sell properties at 100% of the list price. If it’s 95%, they sell properties 5% below list price. And if it’s 105%, then they sell properties 5% over the list price.


Let’s say, for example, you are listing a property for $100,000. If you don’t want to pay the commission (3% of $100,000 is $3,000), then you want to find a realtor with a list-price-to-sale-price ratio that results in a sale high enough to cover the commission. For the $100,000 list price, if you’re agent has a ratio of 104% (and the market average is 100%), then they will likely be able to sell your property for $104,000, take a 3% commission of $3120, and you are left with over $100,000!


How to Find Out an Agent’s List-Price-to-Sale-Price Ratio?


Finding out an agent’s ratio is simple: you just ask. However, Aaron said, “there’ll be people that get insulted, there’ll be people that find you arrogant” for asking the question. Even better! No better way to screen out an agent than for them to get angry at you for asking about their credentials.


“What a great way to vet who you work with, because how dare anyone be insulted?” Aaron said. “They’re about to take 2%, 2% of your commission and they’re going to get insulted.”


Are you worried about an agent lying about their ratio? Instead of asking, what is your list-price-to-sale-price ratio, instead ask them to show you the listings they’ve sold in the last 12 months, which will accomplish the same thing. “It will show the list price, the sale price, and the days on market,” Aaron said. “If should all be right there for you.”


What’s a Good List-Price-to-Sale-Price ratio?


Your goal should be to find an agent who has a ratio that is higher than the market average. The key phrase is market average. research yourself and find out what the market is like.”


For example, Aaron said, “In Seattle, it’s a super hot market. It’s insane. Multiple multiples over asking price. Two days on market, six, seven, eight, ten offers. It’s crazy. [However], it’s not like that everywhere. Our team does 105% of asking price on average, where the local market altogether is 100% of asking price… It’s not like that in Tallahassee, but you should find out what it is like in Tallahassee. Find out what the over market in Tallahassee is like so that when you compare realtors, you’re comparing them against your market average, not some national average, but you, where you’re selling.”


Ask three, four, or five real estate agents for their 12-month sales history, compare the ratios, and move forward with the top agents. At that point, Aaron said, “after you’ve gotten their actual performance, then you could ask the questions, ‘Okay, do I like hanging out with this person? Does this person fill me with confidence? Do they make sense? Do they have integrity? Is this someone I want to do business with?’”


In other words, use the ratio to screen out underperforming agents, and then ask follow up questions to select the agent that is the best fit.




The list-price-to-sale-price ratio is a calculation of how much more or less an agent sells a property for, on average, compared to the list price. If you don’t want to pay an agent commission, then you must find an agent who has a ratio high enough to cover the commission percentage.


To find out an agent’s ratio, either ask them what’s your list-price-to-sale-price ratio, or if you are worried they will be dishonest, ask them to provide you with their last 12-month sales history.


A good or bad ratio depends on the market average, not the national average.


Ask 3 to 5 agents for their ratio, compare, and move forward in the interview process with the agents with the highest ratios.



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Friday Facts – Best Real Estate Investing Advice Ever Lightning Round Q&A

Learn this week’s Best Ever guest’s best ever books, real estate deals, ways to give back and biggest mistakes


Doug Larson from JF958: Why Your Vacations are LAME if You’re Not ADVENTURE Flipping


Best Ever BookThe Progress Paradox by Gregg Easterbrook


Best Ever Deal Doug has Done – $150,000 Profit on an Adventure Flip


“I think 2011 I was down in San Diego and I was working on one of those adventure flips I mentioned, and a real estate agent up here in Utah called me and said, ‘Hey, I’ve got this deal… It’s a land deal, I would totally buy it, but I’m a little capped out on cash right now, and they need cash and a quick close. Income property, $50,000; it just dropped from $100,000’ and I said, ‘Send me the info.’ They sent it, I ended up buying it for 38k. A little bit of legwork, I found out some of its issues.”


“Long story short, I got all those things cleared up, I was all in for about $40,000. I sold it a year and a half later for $190,000, so a pretty good flip.”


Best Ever Way Doug Likes to Give Back – Adoption and Active in the Church


“My wife and I have adopted three times. Three awesome kids, and we give a lot of time and energy to them.”


“We’re also pretty active in church, in helping and teaching adults and youth, so… It pretty much takes up all our time.”


Biggest Mistake Doug Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Thinking the Music Would Never Stop (Until 2008 Happened)


“[My] biggest mistake was believing the hype of 2002-2006 and that things were always going to go up. I think we all knew the music would stop somewhere, but just not how fast and how hard it was going to drop. I would say one particular deal – in buying into that hype – I invested in a condo … and the wheels fell off during construction. I could either lose $25,000 earnest money, or just go all in. I went all in, and I lost close to $90,000.”


What does Doug do differently now?


“Well, I wouldn’t buy that, that’s for sure. It really is all about the numbers and good, solid fundamentals. Make sure you’ve got cash flow, make sure you’ve got a plan A, plan B, plan C. Plan A – if it’s going to be a flip, that’s great. If that doesn’t work, can you rent it? Can you lease-option it? Do you want to live in it, maybe? What is your plan B? Plan C is if I really had to get out of this thing really fast, with my lowest price, am I going to lose my shorts? What are the other options? Can I wholesale it to somebody else? What are the other things?”


“Have that all mapped out before you begin. If you know the fundamentals, it should tell you what to do.”


Click here for a summary of Doug’s Best Ever advice: How to Invest in Real Estate on Vacation with Adventure Flipping

Stephanie Weeks from JF959: How Your Mortgage Lender Thinks


Best Ever BookThe Go Giver by Bob Burg


Best Ever Way Stephanie Likes to Give Back – Donating to Charity for the Deaf


“My heart is really with the deaf community, so I serve on the board at the local Deaf Action Center, and I try to give money for every loan that I close to that center. That’s one of the things. I do several things, but that’s really where my heart truly is.”


Click here for a summary of Stephanie’s Best Ever advice: Top 3 Questions to Ask When Interviewing a Mortgage Lender

Tom Postilio and Mickey Conlon from JF960: “Real Estate Brokers to the Stars” Share $2 BILLION in NY Sales


Best Ever Book


Tom: The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald


Mickey: If You Don’t Have Big Breasts, Put Ribbons on Your Pigtails by Barbara Corcoran


Best Ever Deal Tom and Mickey Have Done – Raising the Price from $8.5 million to $12 million on Townhouse


Tom: “We sold a townhouse on the upper West Side for another celebrity client, and it was a situation where we went in and we were the second broker… They had it priced at eight-and-a-half; they lowered the price, they were finally ready to move on. We went in, we wanted the listing, we raised the price to twelve million, because it’s not often where you go in and you say, ‘This is underpriced. This is being approached from the wrong angle.’ We went in, we raised the price to twelve, and we wound up closing at eleven million dollars, and that was a record-breaking deal at the time on the Upper West Side.”


Mickey: “One of the cornerstones of our business is comps. People go by numbers, so when you run what sold in the last six months or the last year of comparable properties, people come up with the price – dollar per square foot, based on the quality of the space, the block, the renovation… And at that moment, when we looked at those numbers we realized ‘There’s a gap here. This house is far better than anything in the eight-and-a-half-million-dollar range, or the nine-million-dollar range.’ So we broadened the search, and we saw an opportunity not in that neighborhood, but in other neighborhoods; the lines blur very quickly… And we thought, ‘We can do this. We can really get away with this,’ and we had half the brokers on the Upper West Side calling us, telling us we were insane. But there were a few [of our] colleagues who came through that house and they said, ‘You nailed it, you’re exactly right. I’m bringing my people back.’ And they did, they brought rounds of buyers back over and over, because they believed in the pricing.”


“Certainly after that, the closing price was posted… Those same people were calling us, ‘How did you do that? What did you do? Was there something included with the sale? Was there extra furniture?’ No, we saw an opportunity in the market, we believed the market could bear that, and it did. That forever changed the benchmark in that neighborhood for pricing the townhouses.”


Best Ever Way Tom and Mickey Like to Give Back – Charitable Donations Tied Into Deal


Tom: “We write checks to a bunch of different charities, but really our preference on this kind of thing is to be very hands-on and create events that we will host ourselves. We’ll bring in VIP clients to have an experience and to raise money for some charities that we support.”


Mickey: “New York City real estate in particular is known for these glittering soirées designed to market properties, and what we like to do… Where a seller has an organization that they believe in and they’d like to support, we try to find the tie-in with the property to raise money for that cause. Because people are more inclined to turn out if they feel there’s some good to be done. So it’s great for our marketing efforts, but more importantly than that, it’s great exposure for those organizations.”


Click here to watch the full interview with Tom and Mickey

Danny Randazzo from JF961: House HACKING Bay Area to a $1MM Commercial Building


Best Ever BookMistakes Millionaires Make by Harry Clark


Best Ever Deal Danny has Done – $585,000 Profit on First House Hack


“The best ever deal that I’ve done was that first primary residence purchase that really created the equity nest egg. I bought a three-three condo in the Bay Area for about $775,000, rented out two of the bedrooms, which covered all but about $400 in living expense for me. I then sold the property about a little over two years later with tax-free gains in 2006 for $585,000 in profit, and with those proceeds my fiancée and I started building our real estate empire.”


Best Ever Way Danny Likes to Give Back – Random Acts of Kindness


“The best ever way I like to give back is through what I like to think of as random acts of kindness. The other week I was traveling through the airport and there was this lady who was just struggling with holding her child, trying to put her stroller and all of her luggage down the plane, down the jet bridge and get on board in a reasonable time fashion to keep everybody else happy, and nobody was helping her. So I pulled off to the side of the line, helped her get her stroller, put away, helped her get her kid on board, and then notice that she was seated in the row behind me. I happened to be in first class, so she was in the middle seat and there were two larger gentlemen to both sides of her and she was very uncomfortable in her seat, so I gave up my seat in first class for her to be comfortable with her child, and for her kid to have some space on that flight.”


“So random acts of kindness, buying people cups of coffee when they least expect it, and just making people smile on a daily basis.”


Biggest Mistake Danny Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Forgetting to Include all Expenses in Initial Money Raise


“The second deal that I did was a $960,000 commercial property. It was four office professional spaces and I syndicated that deal and raised about $200,000, which was just enough money to close the deal and make some improvements to the property.”


“The mistake I made was forgetting to include startup funds for marketing and office professional furniture that we needed for that deal to be successful. So I had to go back to my investors and get more money from them, which wasn’t a problem… However, the investors only wanted to put additional funds in based on the equity share that we had agreed to, so I had to come out of my own pocket to cover my equity position in that property, which in hindsight, if I would have included those startup costs upfront, it wouldn’t have been a big deal to the overall return on investment for the investor, and I would have kept a little bit more money in my pocket.”



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Friday Facts – Best Real Estate Investing Advice Ever Lightning Round Q&A

Learn this week’s Best Ever guest’s best ever books, personal growth experiences, real estate deals, ways to give back and biggest mistakes.


Brian Elwood from JF944: How to Get to 75 Rehabs a Year and 10 Employees


Best Ever BookFour-Hour Work Week by Tim Ferriss
Best Ever Personal Growth Experience – Overcoming the Shiny Object Syndrome


“One of my biggest personality flaws is that I have shiny objects syndrome really bad, the visionary type, and if I see new ideas coming across my plate, [I’m] all over the place… Every time you scroll Facebook there’s a new piece of software that’s supposed to connect to your business, or something. For the first four years we were in business we changed our direction a lot. ‘Well, let’s focus on this. Oh, you know what? Let’s change. Let’s invest in this other market. That didn’t work out… Let’s try to do new construction. Oh, that didn’t work out.’”


What did Brian Learn? “I learned over time that you never get anywhere if you keep changing direction, so now what we do is we develop a vision for the next year and we stick to it. One year is about all I can commit to, because I still have issues… But once that yearly vision is in place, we don’t sway from it. We can make tweaks to it, but that’s what we do the whole year, even if great ideas come up and try to make us change course, and we get a lot more results from being focused.”


Best Ever Deal Brian has Done – $35,000 rental sold for $225,000


“We bought a house for $35,000 and it was in an area where new construction and things were maybe 10 to 15 streets away at that point; the area was still pretty rough, but the growth was spreading towards it, and we held it as a rental for about three years, and then sold it not too long ago for $225,000.”


“So we bought it for $35,000, sold it for $225,000. The house was on two lots, and each lot was good for two houses, so four houses total, and it sold for land value.”


“Buying on the fringes of areas that are gentrifying I think is the easiest money you can make.”


Best Ever Way Brian Likes to Give Back – Perfect Day Crew and Charitable Donations Through Kiva


“I’d say two things… One is that inside of our company culture we have … what we call our Perfect Day Crew where we meet quarterly and everyone goes over what their perfect day is and what’s holding them back, and we all give them feedback and advice. In between those quarterly meetings we are assigned an accountability partner. They hold their partner accountable to doing these things that they set out to do, to move them more towards living their ideal life. So I help not only our team members to do that, but friends and family as well.”


“Another thing I’ll say is that I really like to donate to Kiva… It’s a nonprofit. Some guy in San Francisco started it, and it’s micro-loans for people in third world countries that need money for things like water filters and building toilets, and stuff, and they actually pay you back. They have like a 90-something percent repayment rate. An $800 loan can buy a clean water filter for an entire village of people, and they collectively can pay you back in a year or so, and they even pay I think a little bit of an interest.”


“I like to throw a few hundred bucks a week to my Kiva account, and there’s always money coming back when I’m getting repaid, and I just keep pushing it back and it kind of creates a snowball.”


“I really like the idea of the money getting paid back. There’s something about that, because then I can just keep redeploying it. I think Kiva is a great organization, and I tell people about that a lot.”


Biggest Mistake Brian Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Not Doing Thorough Due Diligence


“Probably not doing enough due diligence, not getting a professional home inspection on the deal, and then overlooking major foundation issues that cost us $20,000. Basically, taking the deal from being profitable to just barely breaking even. So not doing thorough due diligence I’d say would be the biggest mistake.”


What safeguards has Brian implemented to avoid making this mistake in the future?


Well, we do a home inspection every time now. We have a contractor go out there and give us an estimate. We have a member from our team that we call the renovation manager go meet the contractor. Then we get a professional home inspection and a termite inspection on every single deal. We also have photos and videos uploaded to Google Drive that we can check out. That’s about all the due diligence I need to be comfortable. That’s our current system now.”


Click here for Brian’s Best Ever advice on how to get to 75 rehabs a year and 10 employees from your couch

Bill Bronchick and Bobby Dahlstrom from JF945: How to Make Real Estate Your Business Instead of a Hobby


Best Ever BookThink and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill


Best Ever Deal They have Done – $180,000 Half a Duplex sold for $263,000


Bobby – “Bill and I were partners on a duplex in Washington Park which went against the grain of some of our typical deals. It worked our really well, we bought half a duplex.”


Bill – “Right, we bought half a duplex for a 100k, put 80k into it, sold it for 263k in eight days, cash.”


“The buyer was easy, because it’s Washington Park, the most desirable neighborhood in Denver… So that wasn’t hard. We put it on the MLS and we had it sold in a minute.”


“We found the seller’s property was vacant for eight years, and it was a disaster. 1,200 square-foot, half a duplex, we put 80k in it – that’s a lot of work for a little half a duplex.”


Bobby – “That’s right. We purchased it from another investor who… Really, they were new, and it would have been a little too much for them to take on. As I recall, Bill felt bad a little bit that we made so much and he paid for a vacation for her, in addition to the money we had already agreed upon for the purchase.”


Bill – “And just one other thing I just wanted to mention with that deal… This deal in particular – it was a wholesale from another investor to us, and then we sold it retail, so it was kind of back-to-back. It was half a duplex, so there was another side to it, and the other side looked terrible… So we had to actually fix up both sides in front, so it matched, otherwise it would have looked like the monsters with [one half good and one half bad.”


Biggest Mistake They Have Made So Far In Real Estate – Renovated a Property They Didn’t Own and Selling a Property Too Quickly


Bobby – “Well, if I stick with deals with Bill, it might be the time that he verbally told me we had one ready to go, and I got a crew in there over the weekend and then found out that we actually didn’t have the deal signed. We had already done all kinds of demolition and emptied the place out, took out some walls, that kind of thing. But it worked out… We luckily didn’t lose anything too valuable of the owner’s, and we worked it out.”


Bill – “If we’re talking about the one in Baker district, my biggest mistake was selling it to Bobby for a quick 10k cash, and then he fixed it up and made the lion’s share of profit. I was greedy. I was looking for a new car and he flashed cash in my face, so I sold it in two days after I had it, to Bob.”


Click here for Bobby and Bill’s Best Ever advice, which are 5 ways to make real estate your business instead of a hobby.


Sean Conlon from JF946: Learn the Secrets that took CNBC TV Star Sean Conlon From Assistant Janitor to Real Estate Mogul


Best Ever BookCity of Thieves by David Benioff


Best Ever Personal Growth Experience – Death of Father


“It’s my saddest and it’s also the best ever… My father dying at 56 in 2000. He was the reason I did everything I did.”


What did Sean Learn? “It taught me that we’re here for a nanosecond, so try and enjoy your life also.”


Best Ever Deal Sean has Done – Backing Out of a Multimillion Dollar High-Rise Development Deal


“The best ever deal I’ve done are the two deals I didn’t do in 2007. I was going to build two high-rises. I had everything lined up, the hundred million dollars in financing, and for some reason I didn’t do them. I’m not going to say I saw it coming, because I got dinged in a way, but those two – I’m like “This is too much. It scares me. I’m not smart enough to do it.” They were the best deal I ever didn’t do.”


Best Ever Way Sean Likes to Give Back – Bought Dad a Car, Wildlife Foundation, And Fix-and-Flip Advice Through His TV Show


“I obviously was very good to my father; the first cool thing I ever did was buy him a Mercedes for Christmas, because when we were young he used to bring us up and look in the dealership window and point out that that was for some rich guy… So on Christmas when I was about 25, 26 we went up there and I bought it from the one that was sitting in the window.”


“I have a Wildlife Foundation, and while this might sound slightly self-promotional, I think The Deeds: Chicago – I give back knowledge I’ve learned to people all over the country, which is great. But my Wildlife Foundation is my passion, animals.”


Biggest Mistake Sean Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Taking a Sociopath at His Word


“A mistake I made on a particular deal is — there’s an expression I use quite regularly, “Trust, but verify.” I was told the zoning was such, and the guy told me it with such a sense of belief, I forgot the fact [that he] might have been a sociopath, so I bought something that was not zoned appropriately. Yikes! I thought I could put 25 units on it, and they could put four or five.”


John Hyre from JF947: You’ll Lose MILLIONS If You Don’t Understand These Tax Principals


Best Ever BookGrit by Angela Duckworth


Best Ever Deal John has Done – Low-Income, Cash Flowing Rental Property in Columbus, OH


“A wholesaler brought me a low-income rental here in Columbus… It’s not a war zone, but it’s not a beautiful area either… But this was a great deal.”


“It was 15k. I think he made 5k on it. The lady had been in there for 12 years, the rent is 620/month; it needs about 10k to rehab, but not today. I’ve had this thing now for almost a year, and we’re now getting ready to replace the roof with about how half of my net cash flow.”


“It’s been a great property. The only real quirk with the property is the tenant has been there so long, she’s hard to train. I have a property manager, because when you have something in an IRA or 401k you don’t want to run it yourself; there are tax problems with that. You really need to have an outside manager.”


“For her, the manager needs to show up on the third Thursday of the month, and text her on the third Wednesday of the month. She gets her government check the third Wednesday. You have 24 hours, and she will pay you in cash. If you wait 48 hours, that money will be gone. So you have to show up and pick it up from her. She’s incapable of writing a check. That’s the only real quirk. But if you do the numbers, it’s a sweet deal, and it’s perfect in my 401k. I don’t pay tax on it, I’ll continue to reinvest the money.”


“This is a cash flow property. I could sell it right now in this market for probably 30-35. Maybe if I had a California or a foreign investor maybe 40. It’s funny, I tell my California investors “Be careful, don’t tell people you’re from California, because if they hear that, they charge you more, and you pay.” But no, I’m going to hold that for the cash flow. I am cash flowing about 5k/year on that property, which if you figure I had 15 in it, that’s great.”


“For the first four years I’m going to reinvest about 2,500/year into updating the property. For example, the roof really needs [to be] replaced. It’s still functional, it’s not leaking, but I can tell it’s going to go, and I’d rather just deal with it now. Plus, keep her in there. If she’s been in there 12 years, le’s make the place a little nicer. It’s a swell return.”


Best Ever Way John Likes to Give Back – Coaching Debate Skills to Kids and Charitable Donations


“Two things: volunteering as a debate coach. I coach kids debate; I teach verbal violence, and it’s just fun to see the light come on and the confidence in their eyes.”


“Second, there’s a school here in Columbus, St. Charles School For Boys that we like to give to. I plan ultimately on funding a scholarship; they’re a wonderful school, they change lives.”


Biggest Mistake John Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Bad Partnership due to Lack of Due Diligence


“Partners. I’ve almost never bought a bad deal, but I’ve gotten involved with bad partners, I didn’t do my due diligence. In one case I didn’t do the due diligence on the spouse, and it turns out that she was two scoops full of crazy, and it caused a lot of problems, big time. It cost me way more money than they property ever could have.”


How does John Qualify Partners now? “I don’t partner anymore. I don’t have the need to do so, and for now I don’t.”


“If I were to qualify them, I suppose I would do more due diligence, asking around, looking at history, ask for credit record… This one would have been pretty hard to spot. In hindsight, the only way I could have spotted her condition was talk to enough people who dealt with her, because what’s funny is after the feces hit the rotating blade device, a number of people came up and said, “Oh yeah, she’s nuts!” I just wish I would have talked to those people, but it’s the only way I think I could have discovered it, because she was kind of like high-functional crazy. It’s not like I came home and there’s a rabbit’s head boiling on a pot of water on the stove… You really had to dig to figure her out.”



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Friday Facts – Best Real Estate Investing Advice Ever Lightning Round Q&A

Learn this week’s Best Ever guest’s best ever books, real estate deals, ways to give back and biggest mistakes


Travis Daggett from JF937: Why Picking the RIGHT Partnership is Key in Wholesaling


Best Ever Book – Visioneering by Andy Stanley


Best Ever Deal Travis has Done – Six-figures profit on a short-sale deal


“[It was a] really desirable area near Eugene. It took over a year to finish it, to close on it.”


“As soon as we looked at it, even online [and] looked at comps and stuff, we knew that it was a great area, great property. We really wanted to have it. Even before we looked at it, we said, ‘If we can get this anywhere near $300,000, it’s a deal.’ So we met with the sellers, they were very cooperative – he was actually a parent attorney, so he knew a little bit about the legal process.”


“It took a long time, a lot of handholding – I don’t mean that in a condescending way. Just walking him through the process and negotiating with the banks, meeting the agent there, dealing with all kinds of liens that popped up with credit cards, and just going through that whole process.”


“We ended up buying it for $244,000 I think, so just right out of the gate we had probably $50,000 in equity, and then it was a light rehab. Of course, over the years, from when we started to when we finished, that area went through the roof even in property values. It probably went up double digits, so we ended up with over a hundred thousand dollars in equity when we ended up closing on it, finished rehabbing and then appraised.”


Best Ever Way Travis Likes to Give Back – Donating to Charity


“I think it’s just the lifestyle. It’s really [about having a] plan. All of us can give emotionally when we see the kid on TV with the belly sticking out, but I think giving is really a lifestyle, so it’s planned. We plan that we’re going to give a certain amount. We’re not just surprised at the end of the year when we do our taxes.”


Biggest Mistake Travis Has Made So Far In Real Estate – The deal that kept getting worse and worse


“Bought at auction, so of course it’s done [since we] paid cash. Trusted a partner who … was outside of his area of expertise as well. Then we made it worse by over-rehabbing it by about double. Then we made it worse still by selling with seller financing – not that that’s a bad strategy in general, but just delaying our misery. And then [we] ended up taking the loss I think two years after we bought it.”


“We should have just swallowed the poison a couple of years earlier and taken a loss.”


Sunny Burns from JF938: Ultimate Beginner’s Guide to Buying Property Number One


Best Ever Book – Outwitting the Devil by Napoleon Hill


Best Ever Personal Growth Experience – Investing in First Deal


“I’m going to have to say it was buying the quadplex. It’s been about a year and a half now since we bought it. We had to do so much work to it. We really took ownership of it and we really did a great job, I feel.”


“Our tenants really love their units. We do a good job maintaining that tenant/landlord relationship with them. So just this whole experience of stepping towards financial freedom – this experience has been great for the both of us, as a family.”


Best Ever Way Sunny Likes to Give Back – Mentoring


“My wife [and I] are assisting young adult pastors at our local church, so we give back that way.”


“Recently, I’ve been getting very much into mentoring people through breaking habits from pornography – that’s recently what I’ve bee diving into.”


Biggest Mistake Sunny Has Made So Far In Real Estate


“Doing all [the rehab] work ourselves. We had a lot of holding costs. It was completely vacant when we bought it, so it took us like three months to do all that work. Honestly, I think we could have probably saved some money if we had hired some contractors to help us out, because I’m working full-time and my wife was actually on maternity leave with a baby, so it’s hard for her to do a lot of things.”


“If we had hired contractors, yes, we would have had to pay them a lot of money, but we were also paying the mortgage, the taxes, the insurance – all of that without having any tenants to helps us out. That was kind of painful.”


“If I were to do it again, I’d definitely do some of the work, but I’d hire a lot of it out as well.”


Here is a summary of Sunny’s Best Ever advice: Guide to House Hacking Your First Investment Property


Matt Garabedian from JF939: He Netted OVER $1 MM WHOLESALING Last Year


Best Ever Book – Secrets of The Millionaire Mind by T. Harv Eker


Best Ever Deal Matt has Done – Subject-to Million Dollar Flip


“The best ever deal I did was a 17-unit apartment complex. I did the deal subject-to. The scenario was the owner was an absentee landlord. They were underwater, and they were basically on their way to losing the property. I was able to structure the deal subject-to the existing loan, and it was one of those deals where everything lined up perfectly.”


“The mortgage balance was 50% below market, the interest rate was excellent, and they were motivated. They were over 120-days delinquent, and I was able to provide a win/win scenario by making their mortgage current, making their taxes current, and then giving them some cash to do the deal.”


“It worked out that we acquired the property for just under $560,000. Total cash out of pocket was $25,000 and total rehab was about $100,000. After about 14-months, we sold the property for just over a million dollars.”


Best Ever Way Matt Likes to Give Back – Setting his family up for success


“I love to give back to my family. I grew up in a middle-class family. My parents did the most that they could do for us, but we certainly were never in a position to get ahead or to invest in real estate or to put money away. It was kind of paycheck-to-paycheck deal. My mom is the hardest-working person I’ve ever met. She’s worked every day of her life and never complained about it once, so last summer I called her up – it was actually on the 4th of July, and my mom always drove kind of like a beater, it you will.”


“She had this Ford Taurus and it was always breaking down on her. I never liked the fact that it was just like an unreliable car for her, and I’ve got two little boys, so I wanted her to have something that she could take the grandchildren around and take them out or whatever they wanted to do. So I just called her up and I said, ‘Hey, I’m going to come pick you up’ and I drove her over to the Honda dealership in town and I said, ‘Mom, I just want to let you know that I appreciate everything you did for me and I want to buy you a car. Whatever you want, please pick it out.’”


“For me, it was a blessing to be able to do that for my mom because a that point her whole face lit up. She couldn’t fathom the idea of being able to go and pick out any car and not have to worry about the price or the payment. That for me was just a total enjoyable experience. So my big why in this business is to take care of my family and set up a generational opportunity for my kids. That for me is why we can get up everyday and do this business.”


Biggest Mistake Matt Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Not understanding the value he brought to the table


“To be honest with you, I’ve never lost money on a deal, thank goodness. I thought about this questions, and I think the biggest mistake I’ve made earlier in my career was not understanding my value that I was bringing. I would tend to give away a lot in the deal just to please the other person or improve my worth to others.”


“I think now as I have gotten more entrenched in my business and learned more of the value that I bring, I’m a little bit more apt to negotiation and make it a two-way street, if you will. I try to provide value at all times to my clients, but I never want to give away too much.”


Here is a summary of Matt’s Best Ever advice: How to Net Over $1 Million a Year Wholesaling Real Estate

Steve O’Brien from JF940: Why VALUE-ADD Multifamily Properties ROCK!


Best Ever Book – Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell


Best Ever Deal Steve has Done – Distressed “single-family” property


“Definitely the deal we did in suburban Atlanta. It was actually a duplex community, and the property was being run more like a single-family neighborhood than a multifamily property. It was in big distress, so we came in and purchased the property all cash, because it was a mess, so it wasn’t financeable.”


“To give an example, it was in such bad condition after the foreclosure that there were residents who instead of reporting a termite infestation, [they] would just put posters up over the holes in the wall, and wouldn’t even report it because they didn’t think anybody would fix anything. So we really had to sell the vision on that one of what we could turn it into [and] the transformation we could make.”


“We were able to do it. Four years later, it’s worth about three times what we paid for it. And we were able to finance out all of our capital, and it’s been a great deal. We basically turned it form a single-family neighborhood into a multifamily property.”


Biggest Mistake Steve Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Buying in 2006


“It’s actually on my own personal house. I bought a house at the absolute worst time in 2006. I always laugh about it because I’m a real estate person and I still bought a house in 2006, at the absolute worst time. Just going back and thinking about it, it’s funny. I think we all ignored a lot of the signs that some of this stuff didn’t make sense and we all paid the price. But hopefully, we came out the other side better for it.”



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Friday Facts – Best Real Estate Investing Advice Ever Lightning Round Q&A

Learn this week’s Best Ever guest’s best ever books, real estate deals, ways to give back and biggest mistakes



Mark Allen from JF930: Recession-Proof? Why You MUST Diversify Your Assets


Best Ever BookNever Eat Alone by Keith Ferrazzi


Best Ever Deal Mark Has Done – Subject-to to flip


“I’d probably say the first deal that I did when I got to Dallas. I did a lot of direct mail marketing and got a seller that was interested in selling but the numbers didn’t work out. The only way I was able to work it out was to take the property subject-to the existing mortgage for $118,000.”


“I paid the seller $2,000, took over the mortgage at $118,000 balance, put $12,000 into the foundation and plumbing, and sold the home to the tenants 6 months later for $175,000. I guess I made nearly $50,000 with maybe $14,000 out of pocket, plus closing costs, so let’s say $16,000. Maybe wasn’t the highest net deal but I like the creative aspect.”


Best Ever Way Mark Likes to Give Back – Charity and T-shirts to the Homeless


“I used to host a charity series called Dance for Charity. We throw a big event, bring in a big electronic DJ and sell tickets and give 100% of the proceeds to a specific charity.”


“I’ve created We Buy Homes t-shirts, with your logo and your number and give those out to homeless people at like major intersections, under a bridge. Not only are you giving to the needy, but you’re getting your business out there.”


Biggest Mistake Mark Has Made So Far in Real Estate – Incorrect Comps for a Flip


“I think it was when I first started getting into flipping, it was like my first real flip here in Dallas, and the thing that I don’t like about residential real estate is it’s so subjective and I hated figuring out the values of homes because of that.”


“The first flip I ever did backed into a three-lane road and I knew that one block over, the homes would sell in the mid $400,000, but they were interior lots. This home that backed to the busy road ended up selling in the mid $300,000. I said ‘well hey this home is going to sell in the mid $400,000,’ so my numbers were all skewed. I ended up selling the home for the highest price per sq. ft. on that road that was backed to the busy road, but the $75,000 in profit that I originally thought didn’t happen. I ended up with like $600.”


“Always check for where things like busy roads, water towers, power lines, because those things are going to affect the value of the property.”



Neva Williamson from JF931: Being Fired, She LEARNED the REI Ropes QUICKLY!


Best Ever Book – Book of Proverbs in the Bible


Best Ever Way Neva Likes to Give Back – Real Estate Investing YouTube Channel


“Lately, what I’ve been doing, because … my email is over flooded, so what I started doing was I started a YouTube channel, “Time for Investing.” I’ve been really posting videos and answering questions and really helping people out, and now I get people commenting or emailing ‘hey I’ve been watching your videos and it helped me. I just closed on a deal.’ So that’s what I’ve been doing to really give back. Just to offer what I learned and how I wholesale and buy rental properties and things like that. I think that’s a great way for me to give back at this point.”


Biggest Mistake Neva Has Made so Far in Real Estate – Not Getting the Closing Documents Before Closing


“When you get your HUD-1 before closing on any house. Now I ask them if they can give me the HUD-1 or the closing documents the day before so I can really go through it because I’ve had times where they have calculated my wholesale fee and those types of things incorrectly, and then they wire incorrect amounts.”


“At the closing, what I’ve learned, the settlement companies, once they’ve wired those funds out, those funds are gone, so if they wire too much money to the seller of the property, you’re kind of stuck and you have to go to the seller to get your money back. You’re going to be at the mercy of them because now they sent them too much money.”


“The biggest mistake is not catching that those numbers are incorrect before the funds are wired. You really can’t trust the settlement company to make sure that those numbers are correct.”



Clayton Morris from JF932: FOX News Anchor Invests in Real Estate


Best Ever BookThe Four Spiritual Laws of Prosperity by Edwene Gaines


Best Ever Deal Clayton has Done – $43,000 Double-Close Wholesale Deal


“It was a wholesaling deal in New Jersey. It proves every point of real estate – systems work, follow-up works. I had done a mailing in New Jersey where I live, and I found a property in a very affluent neighborhood. These houses were being kind of torn down or built out from $400,000 and being sold for $900,000. And I managed to do a mailing, I got these people, stuck to my guns on price, I sent them a purchase agreement when no one else did, and a month or two months later they followed up with ‘Is your offer still good? We’re exhausted from going around in circles, we’ll take your offer.’”


“I got it, and it ended up being a wholesale deal. It ended being a $43,000 assignment. Or, actually, I double-closed that one. So a $43,000 double-close. That was a big moment for me. That was my second wholesale deal I ever did.”


Best Ever Way Clayton Likes to Give Back – 30 minute, Free Consulting Calls


“I’ll spend 30 minutes on the phone with investors, and they have no money — I don’t care, I want to help people take action. I’ve been blessed with a broadcasting career, so one of the ways that I like to give back is to just share as much as I can… Share everything, be as transparent, open as a book.”


“I’ll jump on the phone with people, talk for 30 minutes, they’ll tell me about their financial goals, they’re struggling with this, and I’ll kind of just help them over that hurdle. I sort of try to be a mentor to as many people as I can.”


“I try to go in inner cities to help with that financial education, because we’re not taught this stuff. We were never taught this is the way to build wealth. We’re taught, ‘Go get a job,’ and we we’re taught, ‘This is how you balance a checkbook,’ but we’re not talking about real wealth building in this country. So I try to give back in that way to the best of my ability anytime I’m asked. Any speech, going to a public library in the inner city – anything like that is what I love to do.”


Biggest Mistake Clayton Has Made so Far in Real Estate – Dragging Out a Wholesale Deal


“There’s been a bunch, but one sticking out to me is dragging out a deal for too long and making promises that I couldn’t keep to the seller. This would happen to be on a wholesaling deal. At the end of the day, I lost my deposit – I wasn’t going fight that, of course – and the dragging out of the deal, and thinking that at the last moment I could just bail on the contract.”


“People’s lives are involved in this, right? They’re planning on moving, they’re planning on packing up their stuff, and I thought for sure that I could sell this house; I thought for sure that I could buy this; I could do something with it. But it ended up being a disaster – [there was] a sewer condition with the property.”


“I thought for sure that this house would sell, [and that] we could do a great deal. It ended up dragging on and on. She’s packing up, ready to move to Pennsylvania, and I just have to tell her I can’t do it. It was just heartbreaking.”


“Now I pull the Band-Aid off real fast. Right away, as soon as I can. Not waiting that long, 40 days, before I have to make a decision like that.”



Andrew Holmes from JF933: Your FORMULA to Buy 5 Rentals in 2 Years and Payoff in 7!


Best Ever BookRich Dad Poor Dad


Best Ever Deal Andres has Done – Drive For Dollars


“Bought it for $12,000, and we keep it, and it’s worth over $150,000.”


“Actually I got while driving for dollars”


“I was driving around, I saw a really bad driveway, windows were all messed up; it looked like a house that clearly was distressed, so I called the owner and he said, “Well, it’s going to auction, and I want nothing to do with the property.” We approached the owner and we paid him $2,000, paid off the $10,000 mortgage and that was the end of the story.”


Best Ever Way Andrew Likes to Give Back – Shares Everything He Knows


“I think the best ever way I like to give back is share what we know, because the more that I share, the more openly information is shared, the more we get to grow.”


“A lot of times people hold this belief, ‘Why would you share so openly?’ I’ve always laughed, that every time I share, I get back so many more folds, because people give back in ways they don’t even know. The best way of learning is to teach others to do it.”


Biggest Mistake Andrew Has Made so Far in Real Estate – Greed


“Getting greedy and not trusting your gut instinct when it says no. It doesn’t matter how good it sounds, pass.”


Click here for a summary of Andrew’s Best Ever Advice: Formula to Buy 5 Rental Properties in 2 Years and Payoff in 7


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Friday Facts – Best Real Estate Investing Advice Ever Lightning Round Q&A

Learn this week’s Best Ever guest’s best ever books, real estate deals, ways to give back and biggest mistakes


Himanshu Jain from JF923: How He Started with a Condo and a 20-Unit Apartment Complex


Best Ever BookThe Millionaire Real Estate Investor by Gary Keller
Best Ever Deal Himanshu has Done – Wholesale Deal Bought at 40% Market Value


“I think [my best deal was when I] bought a townhome from a wholesaler. I paid almost 40% of the [market] value.”


“I had hardly anything to do on it. They were looking to close quick and I was able to move pretty quick on that [because I could pay] in cash.”


“I paid around $45,000 [and sold it] for $110,000.”


Biggest Mistake Himanshu Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Not Looking at HOA Documents before Purchasing a Condo as a Rental


“Condominiums are managed and run by the homeowner’s association, so you can run into a lot of issues if you’re investing in a [condo building] that has a very small number of units. The homeowner’s association is too picky about things. In my case, I invested in a property in the Naperville area (suburb of Chicago), which is a condo that we bought in 2013. It was a nice property.”


“When we bought it, I bought it through the auction process and we tried to rent it out, but we were told we couldn’t rent it out.”


“Later on, last year … I reached out to the association because they were allowing other people to rent, so I asked, ‘can I rent it out?’ and they said yes. It was a verbal communication that happened and once I rented it out and once the tenant moved in, they came back with all these written letter saying, ‘you cannot rent it out. The rentals are only allowed for 1 or 2 units in the property,’ which were rented already at the time.”


“This time, because I was in a dire situation because the tenant had already moved in, what I did is I went out and looked at the association documents. Fortunately, I found that they had not registered all the amendments with the county, so they did not have the right to stop me from leasing it out. I had to hire an attorney and then we were able to address that and they had to let me lease it out.”


“The lesson learned is look at the association documents and see what is there. Don’t take it at face value of whatever the associations says because many times, these associations, I think, are on a power trip. They really do not follow the rules themselves, but they expect everybody else to follow them. I would have been better off if I had looked into this situation before because I could have leased it out a long time back and I wouldn’t have been holding it unnecessarily.”


Michael Flight from JF924: SHOPPING CENTER Investing and Why Ugly is GOOD!


Best Ever BookThe Yes-I-can Guide to Mastering Real Estate by Mark Bruce Rosin
Best Ever Deal Michael has Done – Ground Lease with Meijer


“Doing a ground lease with Meijer. It took 8 years to put together, but it worked out great for the community. It was actually Meijer’s first ground lease ever. They had typically bought their own property in the past before that.”


“All in, it was probably somewhere in the $18 million range and the property is probably a $42 million dollar property now if it was sold.”


Click here to learn how Michael did this deal!


Best Ever Way Michael Likes to Give Back – Real Estate for Ministries


“I’m compelled by my faith in Christ to do things for other people. I utilize the talents I received from God by doing real estate for several ministries, one of which is Chicago Hope Academy in the city. All of their students are below average income levels and they’ve put together strategies for flipping houses to generate cash for the high school. I serve on their real estate board and hook them up with banks to give them lines of credit. Last year, I think they actually … raised $650,000 for the high school by flipping houses.”


Biggest Mistake Michael Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Investing in a Corrupted Town


“On the single-family fix-and-flips, we had a property that was in a bad town, and this is one of my biggest [pieces of] advice, [which] is always check what type of town it is, because if the town’s corrupt and the town has high taxes and the town has all kinds of problems, no matter how good of a deal it seems, just run away from it with your hair on fire.”


“The deal that we had was a single-family. We also got out front of the contractors. He said he was doing the work and we didn’t check on it. I paid him because he was my partner’s brother. We ended up losing $40,000 on that deal, but like I say, the town also sunk us too.”


Tim Emery from JF925: TOP Reasons to Start an REI Club and How a Mountain Man Turns to Investing


Best Ever BookCentennial by James Michener


Best Ever Deal Jeremy has Done – Owner-Financing Rental


“I have a rental property that is an owner carry. I got the owners to take a second [mortgage] on it to cover a little bit of the mortgage and fix up. That has now [been] rented for 3 years to a group that will take care of everything, and more than likely, that group will be in the home for a long time.”


“It’s one of my kids college funds.”

Cory Binsfield from JF926: Don’t Listen to Dave Ramsey and Buy 10 Duplexes in 10 Years


Best Ever BookWheelbarrow Profits by Gino Barbaro


Best Ever Deal Jeremy has Done – 10-Year Process to Buy a 11-unit


“The deal I just did. What happened there was it was a property I’ve been trying to buy for 10 years. I’ve been bugging this trust department at this bank. Sure enough, out of the blue, the guy called me in September and says, ‘hey still want to buy this property?’ It was an 11-unit. I said sure, let’s do it.”


“That one had a couple warts on it – needed a foundation and some tuck pointing – but so far, it’s turning out to be an incredible deal.”


Best Ever Way Jeremy Likes to Give Back – BiggerPockets and Blogging


“I go onto BiggerPockets and go into the forums and give advice there, as well as I’m toying with this new blog and just basically throwing it out there – my journey as a real estate investor and offering tips to people.”


Biggest Mistake Jeremy Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Not Having Two Lenders


“I’ve made so many [mistakes], it’s amazing.”


“I was doing this deal and the deal almost went south because the bank got cold feet. What I would advise people to do is whenever you’re looking at a deal, always have two lenders in the pipeline competing on that deal.”


“When I almost lost that deal, it would have been the first deal I ever lost. It would have ruined my reputation in this town by not being able to follow through on a deal.”



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Friday Facts – Best Real Estate Investing Advice Ever Lightning Round Q&A

Learn this week’s Best Ever guest’s best ever books, real estate deals, ways to give back and biggest mistakes


Jeremy Jones from JF916: High End House Hacking in Seattle!


Best Ever Book – Autobiography of a Yogi


Best Ever Deal Jeremy has Done – Foreclosed 5-plex


“A 5-plex [I purchased] at the foreclosure auction in Snohomish County [in Seattle]. Bought it for $288,000, put $85,000 of renovation and costume into it, and it appraised for $500,000 six months later and cash flows really well.”


Best Ever Way Jeremy Likes to Give Back – Provide Real Estate Advice to Others


“The way I like to give back the most is by giving others my understanding of their needs if they ask me ‘oh you’re in real estate, can you help me figure out where I should refinance or sell my house?’ or ‘can you help me figure out how to buy my first rental?’ [I] talk to other people and share the path that I’ve taken to obtain passive income and see the lights go on in them.”


“Also, [I] give that advice and help without any desire to gain personally from it, just as a desire to help. I find that being very gratifying.”


Biggest Mistake Jeremy Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Taking on Projects that are Too Unique


“For me, [my biggest mistake] was doing a flip project on a home that was too unique. When we went to sell it, there weren’t enough comps to validate the offer and we got stuck having to go back and forth between a couple different buyers. By the time our holding costs had added up, I lost a few thousand dollars. It was a lakefront home. The most beautiful home I had done as a flip, but the only one that lost a little bit of money.”


“I’ll caveat this mistake to say that I would probably do it again if I went back and that mistakes are good opportunities for learning. If you do enough deals, sometimes you’ll have one that doesn’t go ideally, but it can be valuable. You might get something out of it that really does help you, so it becomes a win.”



Related: Jeremy’s Best Ever Advice How a Yogi Finds Seller Financing Deals



Nick Baldo from JF917: How He Rehabbed and Refinanced an 8+ Unit Quickly!


Best Ever Book – The Alchemist


Best Ever Deal Nick has Done – First Rental Property


“I had just moved back from New York to the Buffalo area. I was in New York City working as a consultant. I moved back to the Buffalo area and the natural thing to do was I moved back in with my parents. Within a month, I was like ‘alright, we’ve got to figure something out here.’ I had to move out.”


“My business partner was in a similar situation as well. We said ‘well why don’t we do the house hacking idea? Why don’t we buy a duplex, live in it, and that’ll get us out of our parent’s houses?’ So we actually found a 3-unit, financed it personally [using] a FHA loan, lived in the middle of the three units – middle being the median, not the highest rent and not the lowest rent [unit].”


“The reason I’ll call it my best deal because financially it does fine, but it unveiled to me how much I wanted to do rental properties. Without buying that deal, maybe I would have bought one later. But that turned the light on in my head that it doesn’t just have to be flipping. This rental think can be cool too.”


Best Ever Way Nick Likes to Give Back – Volunteering at a Non-Profit


“I like to take whatever I’ve learned, as far as operations and strategy, and try to be part of some non-profit. Right now, I’m part of something called Sled Hockey Foundation. I’m working with them as they’re getting up and [helping] on the operations of their business – how to set up some of their social media, how to plan events, and how to get the word out about this new foundation. That’s been pretty rewarding for me so far.”


Biggest Mistake Nick Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Ignoring the Little Things


“I can say I made this [mistake] on a few [deals]: ignoring the little things about the property, the qualitative features of the property that certainly impact the value. What I mean by that is having a cloud over your head when you’re doing the analysis that the numbers are working and ignoring things that should matter to you. These can be little things like what’s the parking situation like or what’s next door.”


“I had a struggle with this early in my career. The numbers looked great, the comps looked great, but I ignored the fact that my comp is not as good as I though it was because my property is fill in the blank – doesn’t have a driveway, is one and a half vs. two stories, etc. I ignored those things. While I was a really quantitative guy and I remain to be, I’ve learned pretty quickly that you have to look at some of those qualitative features of your houses and buildings.”


Related: Nick’s Best Ever Advice How to Get an Income Approach Appraisal for a Residential Property


Curt Bidwell from JF918: Section 8 and 87 Units AREN’T SO BAD…Ask This Guy!


Best Ever Book – The Go Giver


Best Ever Deal Curt has Done – 2500% Profit on Hoarder Rental Flip


“I bought a nice 4-bedroom, cedar home, 2.4 acres in the city limits. I had it rented for 13 years. Now, [I’m] doing a rehab. One of the tenants left us a hoarder’s mess. It was a junkyard in the yard. The house was full of literally everything! I have 100 hours cleaning out the basement alone. But we’re cleaning it up, remodeling it, doing a short plat to add 3 additional units. When that’s complete, I should realize about 25 times the investment originally.”


Biggest Mistake Curt Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Investing Out-of-State without Proper Due Diligence


“I bought a house across the country without proper due diligence. I live in Olympia, Washington, just south of Seattle. I bought this [property] in central Florida on the word of a well-intentioned friend. True rents were 25% below expectation. Our property management structure fell through. Of course, the market crashed. I currently have it on the market. It will probably sell for 75% of what I bought it for and I will be happy it’s gone.”


“The lesson is [to] do your own due diligence. Don’t take the word of somebody else.”


Shawn Holsapple from JF919: Why You Must Start Investing NOW and Not Wait


Best Ever Book – Rich Dad, Poor Dad


Best Ever Deal Shawn has Done – Huge Profit on a HUD Property


“A property came on HUD one day. It was listed at $110,000. I offered $63,000 and it was accepted. I made one call to a hedge fund and offered it to them for the listed price of $110,000 and they said ‘yes.’ 25 days later, we closed on it. Did a double closing back to back, used their funds to fund the whole thing and walked away with a good check.”


Biggest Mistake Shawn Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Buying an Occupied Property at Auction


“There was a house we bought [for] $22,000. ARV was about $90,000. It was occupied so I wasn’t able to get in [prior to auction]. Those tend to really be bad and this was the worst one ever.”


“It was a little 1,400 square foot house and I think we pulled 120-yards of trash out of there, which was about $4000 because the hoppers and labor to get it somewhat cleaned up. We had several million fleas to deal with. The expenses just went on and on.”


“Wholesale wise, it was probably worth $25,000 and I was into already well over that – closer to $26,000 just to get it cleaned out. I held onto it for a while and couldn’t get rid of it. [I] ended up selling it to a local buyer and ended up eating a $2800 hit just to get rid of it.”


“When I see an asset listed [for auction] as occupied, I try to put in extra cushion, because that’s how they always end up turning out, but that just wasn’t enough cushion. It was a hoarder and it was a horrible, nasty house.”



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I’d also be VERY grateful if you could rate, review, and subscribe to the Best Ever Show on iTunes by clicking this link: http://bit.ly/2m2XyM1


That all helps a lot in ranking the show and would be greatly appreciated. And if you have any comments or questions, leave a comment below. Or comment what is your best ever book, personal growth experience, deal, way to give back, or biggest mistake?


Friday Facts – Best Real Estate Investing Advice Ever Lightning Round Q&A

Learn this week’s Best Ever guest’s best ever books, real estate deals, ways to give back and biggest mistakes


Sean Cole from JF909: Why He DOESN’T “Cherry Pick” Good Deals


Best Ever Book – A Man in Full by Tom Wolfe and Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap and Others Don’t by Jim Collins


Best Ever Deal Sean has Done – Getting his Master’s Degree at Xavier


“The best deal that I ever did really was getting my Masters at Xavier. It wasn’t for the reason that I think most folks are going to assume – because of the financial education that I got. It was actually because of the people I met. One of the most important people in my business was one of my finance professors there at Xavier. She directly has impacted our ability to do business here. She’s one of our lenders that help us lend money. She’s brought untold number of additional investors to us and really allowed us to jumpstart our business here over the last year. In terms of money that we’ve made here, that investment in my education at Xavier and that relationship has been vitally important.”


Best Ever Way Sean Likes to Give Back – Coaching Children’s Sport Leagues


I have three kids [and] they take a lot of time and I love doing it, but I’ve been a coach for a long time. I coached Lacrosse starting when I was 19 years old, so I coach kids. I really enjoy coaching football and basketball and lacrosse and we do everything we can to sponsor local youth sports teams, whether we’re participating or not. It’s really important to us that kids have a great experience with sports and have the ability to get out and play sports and learn how to be part of a team. It’s so important, I think, for the rest of your life – to learn how to work together towards a common goal.”


Biggest Mistake Sean Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Trying to Grow too Quickly


“Initially, I started rehabbing houses. I went from one at a time to 6 at a time and I financed all 6 using hard money loans. I lost over $100,000 over the course of about 9 months. That was my entire retirement savings and we had to pivot. But I learned a really important lesson about growing smart and not growing too quickly and not changing your business plan in an attempt to get rich quick. Real estate is a long game.”


“[When I pivoted], one, I started saving money again and went small. So after that, when we were going to rehab a house, we rehabbed the house one at a time. I also decided not to do it on my own. So when I rehab a house now, I do it with one of the guys that works here with me. We do it together so we split some of the financial risk. We certainly split the profit but we split the workload too.”


Click here for a summary of Sean’s Best Ever advice: How to Double Close and Become a TRUE Wholesaler


Brooke Kaine and Jared Sleeth from JF910: Why He PASSED on a $17MM Deal, or Was It?


Best Ever Book – The Millionaire Real Estate Investor by Gary Keller



Best Ever Deal Brooke and Jared’s Team has Done – Moving to Baltimore During the Crash


“I would say making the decision, at the depth of the market for us in the building business, which was 2011, to move to Baltimore. We knew that the time to make a move like that … was when everyone else was scared to move. And believe me, I was very frightened to move too. But I knew the time to do it was when everyone else isn’t. Everyone else hunkered down so by the time the market turn, which it did in 2012, we were place.”



Best Ever Way Brooke and Jared’s Team Likes to Give Back – Education and Advice to Others


“I would say we like to give back through education and helping the people that we work with make better deals, make better decisions, and make more money.”


David Dodge from JF911: Wholesaling HIGH VOLUME and How He Bought a $160,000 Home in 4 Days


Best Ever Book – Rich Dad, Poor Dad



Best Ever Deal David has Done – First Two Wholesale Deals


“That would be my first two deals, actually. They were JV deals with another wholesaler in town and we made $12,000 on each of them. It wasn’t the highest paying deal but it was the easiest deal.”

“30% of all the deals we do are either another wholesaler bringing us the deal or them having a buyer for our deals. Partnerships are KEY in the wholesaling business.”


“Why partner with others? “People that have the scarcity mindset are the people that fail in this business because there are millions of houses out there. They are everywhere. You can’t drive 3 minutes without passing 10,000 houses. So if you have a scarcity mindset like ‘oh I don’t want to do business with this guy’ or ‘I can’t share with this guy’ then you’re going to fail. There’s plenty of business out there for everybody. If you can leverage somebody else’s buyer’s list and your marketing efforts, or vice versa, you can leverage their marketing efforts with your buyer’s list, and sell a deal and split it 50/50, that’s how we’re doing 20 deals a month.”


Biggest Mistake David Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Not Getting a Coach/Mentor Sooner


“The biggest mistake that I’ve ever made in real estate investing was just thinking that I knew how to do everything myself and it wasn’t hiring a coach. When I first started doing wholesaling, it probably took me 3 months before I did my first deal. I bought tons of courses. I bought 30 books, I literally bought every book on wholesaling I could find on Amazon. I was addicted to YouTube channels. I spent 3 months and half of it was analysis paralysis, the other half of it was I thought I could learn it on my own.”


“I hired a coach and I did 3 deals my first month and probably 5 my second. I think a lot of it came down to having somebody hold you accountable. [My coach] didn’t really teach me anything that I didn’t already know. However he did organize that information really nice and neat so it was easier to understand. The main thing with having a coach is just having someone hold you accountable to get up everyday and do the things that actually generate revenue.”


Click here for a summary of David’s Best Ever advice: Guide to Automatically Wholesaling Over 20 Deals a Month


Fat Taylor from JF912: How to Buy SIGHT UNSEEN


Best Ever Book – Secrets of the Millionaire Mind


Best Ever Reason Why Fat is in Vietnam


“To experience life with my new wife and grow stronger together with her.”


Best Ever Deal Fat has Done – Personal Residence Almost Doubling in Value


“The condo that I live in because I got it after the market crashed for $180,000 and now 6 years later, it’s worth about $330,000.”



Best Ever Way Fat Likes to Give Back – Sharing Advice and Experiences


“Talking with people 1 on 1 and sharing advice and experiences.”


Biggest Mistake Fat Has Made So Far In Real Estate


“I don’t know if it’s a mistake but that fact that I didn’t know that when you have a three unit, you have to pay to have the grass cut and the snow shoveling done. I wish I would have known that ahead of time. That was a big eye opener.”


Click here for a summary of Fat’s Best Ever advice: 3 Tips for Investing in Real Estate Sight Unseen



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That all helps a lot in ranking the show and would be greatly appreciated. And if you have any comments or questions, leave a comment below. Or tell us what is your best ever book, deal, way to give back, or biggest mistake?


Friday Facts – Best Real Estate Investing Advice Ever Lightning Round Q&A

Learn this week’s Best Ever guest’s best ever books, personal growth experiences and lessons learned, real estate deals, and biggest mistakes


Ben Schwartz from JF867: From Rabbi to Zillow Competitor Helping Landlord Fill Vacancies


Best Ever BookThe 10X Rule: The Only Difference Between Success and Failure


Best Ever Personal Growth Experience and What Ben Learned From It – Getting fired from his first job


What did he learn? “I learned that I can’t know what everybody wants at all times, but I could know what I want at all times. I control my destiny. I can’t let anyone else control my destiny because people are too unpredictable.”


Biggest Mistake Ben Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Not signing contracts, nor setting proper expectations prior to going into business with someone


“I started my business and I didn’t really know what I was doing. I was sort of winging it the whole time. For the most part, I had [good] relationships but then once or twice, I got screwed. I decided it was time to start actually having contracts in place and putting things on paper. But in the beginning, I didn’t actually have any contracts … 90% of the time, they’d pay me. But then the two times that I got screwed, I realized that it’s so important that you have solid contracts and also to make sure to put out expectations ahead of time [for] what each party is going to be doing.”



Andrew Cushman from JF868: How to SNAG Deals from BROKERS and What Questions to Ask


Best Ever BookHow to Win Friends & Influence People


Best Ever Personal Growth Experience and What Andrew Learned From It Purchasing his first apartment, which was a 92-unit on the other side of the county.


“It was 75% vacant. It was out first deal and we needed to raise $1.2 million. I underestimated how challenging it was going to be to raise $1.2 million back in early 2011. I underestimated how tough it would be to manage the rehab on that. A lot of learning experiences came out of that. It did end well. We actually sold it last year profitably, but it was very much a growth and learning experience.”


What did he learn moving forward?


First – “We have a very specific checklist for screening properties based on the strength of the market and demographics. So we check median income. We check crime rates. We check flood maps, and a handful of other things that partially grew out of that.”


Secondly – “For renovations, before we go hard on our deposit once we’re under contract, I have a contractor bid, so it’s not just me. At this point, I can walk through a property and have a pretty good estimate, but on top of that, I have contractors giving me bids so that when we finalize our budget, I know really well what the rehab is going to be.”


Finally – “Also, tracking renovations. On that first deal, I didn’t do a good job tracking it. What I mean is: how much are we spending on each project vs. what we budgeted. Whereas now, I have spreadsheets and every month, the property management company has to send me a spreadsheet with all the capex invoices. They submit that to me and we track that vs. the budget so it’s a very strict and well-controlled process.”


Best Ever Deal Andrew has Done


“In July of 2014, we bought a 122-unit property in the Atlanta area for $2.4 million. We put about $940,000 in renovations into it. And then with soft costs and everything, our total basis was $3.5 million … with about $1.1 million of investor equity. This fall, it appraised for $5.4 million. If you were to deduct 6% for sales cost, if we were to sell it that would leave about $2.5 million in equity. That means all of our investors in 2 years time would see 120% profit and then that’s on top of the distributions you’ve been making for the last 2 years.”


Biggest Mistake Andrew Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Buying a D-class property


“[I] bought a property in an extremely rough area of Fort Worth Texas … We bought it in an area that was far rougher crime wise then we realized … It took more money to renovate because it kept getting destroyed, and it took longer. So, the headaches of doing that just wasn’t worth it and that’s part of what drove us over to B-properties vs. C, and frankly, that one was a D that snuck in.


Learn Andrew’s Best Ever Advice: How to Successfully Familiarize Yourself with an Out-of-State Real Estate Market


Coleman Nelson from JF869: How to Jump into a PARTNERSHIP with NO MONEY


Best Ever BookRich Dad Poor Dad’s Cashflow Quadrant


Best Ever Personal Growth Experience and What Coleman Learned From It – Two-year mission trip


“About 10 years ago, I served a 2-year long mission for my church where I was in Nevada – a year in Las Vegas, a year in Reno. During that time, basically every day I was knocking on doors or talking to people on the streets … about religion and trying to bring people closer to Christ. That’s not a very popular topic to talk about. People don’t like to talk about politics or religion or anything like that


What did he learn? – “It was a good opportunity for me to grow in my ability to relate with others. Before that experience, when I was a kid, I didn’t even want to go in the grocery store because I hated interacting with the cashier. It was pretty bad, but that definitely allowed me to grow … and listen to people, to relate with them, and truly care about the other people.”


Best Ever Deal Coleman has Done


“We bought a house about a year ago: a single family for $62,000, put in $13,000 in work, so $75,000 all in. [We] refinanced it and it appraised at $130,000, so the bank gave us about $91,000. We got … cash in our pockets and kept some of it in the business. It’s a pretty good deal for a couple months of work.”


Biggest Mistake Coleman Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Bad experience with a prospective tenant


“One of my mistakes was just learning how to manage properties. One time I can think of is when I had an applicant apply for one of our properties. Typically, [when] we have them apply, [we] run a background check, we get them to sign the lease, and [then we have them] pay the deposit within 48 hours of that process. But, this one lady was a little flaky. [She] kept … cancelling appointments to meet to get the deposit and then she started hesitating. Two weeks later, she ended up backing out and I’d stopped showing the property to other people, so we I lost half a month of time and a lot of effort. I was something I look back on and shake my head [at] because I was not doing a very good job as a property manager. Fortunately, I haven’t made that mistake again.”


LaShannon White from JF870: How to Go from $3,000 to 80 deals in a SHORT Period


Best Ever BookThink And Grow Rich


Best Ever Personal Growth Experience and What LaShannon Learned From It – Being a single mom


“Never give up. Let me share a little story about that. I’m a single mom and I went through a crazy divorce. Through that storm, I could have [given] up, but every single day, I told myself, ‘I must keep going, I must keep going, I must keep going.’


What did she learn? – “No matter how crazy your life gets, don’t ever give up because there’s always a blessing on the other side of your storm.”


Best Ever Deal LaShannon has Done – A quick $10,0000 profit from a wholesale deal


“This is a transaction that … I’ve made about $10,000 from … recently: a two bedroom, one bath. I got it for $35,000. I sold it for $45,000. That was the best ever deal I’ve done because it happened real quick. I didn’t have to wait a long time. It happened immediately.


Biggest Mistake LaShannon Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Being a one trick pony


“The biggest mistake that I’ve made, honestly, … is focusing on just one area of real estate. I think that in order to just really live your best life ever … you can’t put all your eggs in one basket. You’ve really got to be flexible with your real estate components … There’s so many different facets of real estate. I would say don’t focus in on one area. Get comfortable with that. Find other areas that you like and you’re good at and makes sure that you become a student in that and get a couple of area to focus on just outside of just one.”




In the comment section below, what is your best ever book, personal growth experience, deal, or biggest mistake?


20 Properties That Are Definitely Showing Signs of Distress

Being able to identify distressed properties is one of the most effective ways to find off-market deals and an untapped supply of motivated sellers.


In this post, you will learn the 6 common signs of distress, be provide multiple examples of each, and understand how to identify them when researching your market.



1. Grass

Observing a property’s grass condition is a quick and easy way to identify a distressed property situation. If you come across a property that has tall or dead grass, it may have an absentee homeowner that is motivated to sell.



Image credit: MortgageOrb


Image credit: Romance Bandits


Image Credit: Distressed Property Expert


2. Windows

Finding a property with broken and/or boarded up windows is certainly a sign that the property is vacant. Also, it is likely that a property with broken or boarded up windows will show other signs of distress (grass, vegetation, deferred maintenance, etc.).



Image Credit: Foreclosure Connections



Image Credit: Investopedia


Image Credit: postfastr



3. Overfill of mail or newspapers

The overfill of mail or newspapers are subtle signs of distress. Out of all the signs of distress listed, this is probably the most difficult to spot. It can mean one of two things: the homeowner is on vacation or the property is vacant.



Image Credit: Canaday Group


Image Credit: KE1RI



4. Code enforcement signs

There are many types of code enforcement signs and sometimes they can be difficult to spot. The majority of the time, they are posted on the front door or front window.



Image Credit: Triad City Beat


Image Credit: Triad City Beat


Image Credit: The Ann Arbor News



5. Overgrown vegetation

Overgrown vegetation is similar sign as tall or dead grass, but the property has probably been sitting for a much longer. Properties with overgrown vegetation are impossible to miss.



Image Credit: NRHC


Image Credit: The News-Herald



Image Credit: WPXI News


6. Deferred maintenance

The deferred maintenance referred to here is external, since you obviously won’t be able to easily see inside the property. But if the outside shows signs of wear, the inside is likely equally as bad or even worse.



Image Credit: Realtor.com


Image Credit: Invessa Group


Image Credit: Clearview Homes 360



7. Other but obviously distressed

Here are some properties that have been through a lot. These properties should be avoided at all costs, unless you are interested in knock downs.



Image Credit: Comcate

Image Credit: Buy Investment Property Today


Image Credit: eHow





The 6 most common signs of distress are: 1) tall or dead grass, 2) boarded up or broken windows, 3) overfill of mail and newspapers, 4) code enforcement signs, 5) overgrown vegetation, and 6) deferred maintenance.


Now that you know what to look for, it’s time to put it into practice. Keep an eye out for signs of distress on your way to work, the gym, the grocery store, etc., record some addresses, look up the owner information on the local county’s website, and start sending out letters.

Friday Facts – Best Real Estate Investing Advice Ever Lightning Round Q&A

Learn this week’s Best Ever guest’s best ever books, personal growth experiences and lessons learned, real estate deals, ways to give back and biggest mistakes


Sensei Gilliland from JF860: CREDIT CARDS are OKAY to Use as Leverage If…


Best Ever BookBible


Best Ever Personal Growth Experience and What Sensei Learned From It – The great recession


“It opened up my eyes that I definitely need to get outside my comfort zone [and to] get out there and do different types of deals that I wasn’t doing previously.”


Best Ever Deal Sensei has Done – 80+ unit property purchased from tax lien firm w/ zero money out of his pocket


“I just picked up over 80 units in an apartment complex. [I] bought a tax lien from a tax lien firm for $350,000. I didn’t use any of my own money. I borrowed it from a private moneylender. I promised him $100,000 back within a year’s time…I’m foreclosing on it right now. I’ve got it presold to someone else for $1.5 million.


Best Ever Way Sensei Likes to Give Back – Tithing


“I tithe through my church and that money goes to help planting more churches and helping to feed and clothe children throughout the world.”


Biggest Mistake Sensei Has Made So Far In Real Estate


“Not buying enough.”



Kolby Kay from JF861: From 9 to 5 Call Center to Multimillion Entrepreneur and Why You MUST Think This Way


Best Ever BookThe Alchemist


Best Ever Way Kolby Likes to Give Back


“Every business I’ve ever started has a component of giving back. The areas that I focus on most are women and children in need or technology for kids. I make it a core competency of every business that we build…whether it’s a percentage or education or actual money.”


Biggest Mistake Kolby Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Listening to others and not following his intuition


“Not listening to my gut. I was going down a route and let other people…guide the decisions that I made and it didn’t turn out in my best interest.”



Ivan Barratt from JF862: Landlord Paying for Utilities? Plus Large Multifamily Acquisitions


Best Ever BookAntifragile: Things That Gain from Disorder


Best Ever Personal Growth Experience and What Ivan Learned From It – Lessons learned from making the decision to purchase an apartment complex too quickly


“One of my early apartments deals, I made every mistake in the book. The one saving grace was that I was a snob about the location of the apartment complex and that location what’s saved me from having to turn the keys in.”


What did he learn? – “You’ve got to look at 150 to 200 deals to find one good apartment deal. If you haven’t looked at that many deals, that’s a big red flag. People get over zealous and just want to get in the game but when you’re going after apartment projects, the profits are amplified and so are the mistakes.”


Best Ever Deal Ivan has Done – 237-unit deal in Indianapolis


“We got it for a great price – less than $50,000 a door – in a market where we should be able to raise rents $100 a door. Our financing came in above expectations so we’ll have a pool of capital – a little over $2 million – to put into new improvements to the property. The way our financing is set up, I can finance $2 million worth of improvements…with only an extra $400,000 of equity”


Best Ever Way Ivan Likes to Give Back – Donating time and providing sponsorships


“Right now, my wife really pushes me to actually give time, which is hard for me to do. But I think it’s critical for people to actually roll their sleeves up and give some time back of their own. Other than that, every so many doors we buy, we’re trying to sponsor more kids through programs that help needy children.”


Biggest Mistake Ivan Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Not starting his own business earlier


“Mistakes are stepping stones, but if I can jump in a time machine, I would go back and tell that young guy to start his own thing much sooner.”



Nick Yarnall from JF863: How to Find $50,000 at the Last Second to Close a Deal


Best Ever BookThe Big Short


Best Ever Personal Growth Experience and What Nick Learned From It


“Figuring out how to run a real estate private equity fund without any money.”


What did he learn? – “Keep showing up every day. I spend every morning for 30 to 60 minutes reading different books… [I make] sure I know what’s going on in the world and [I] take every single meeting that I possibly can, no matter whether I think it’s going to be valuable or not. Just showing face and putting the time in is the most crucial thing for me.”


Best Ever Deal Nick has Done


“[For] one of our three sales in our proof of concept, we hit a 35% IRR on a 4-unit building that everyone told us we were insane for buying. It was a total disaster. It was on market, everybody knew about it, and we just knew we could execute on it and we did.”


Best Ever Way Nick Likes to Give Back – Donating time


“I donate my time…here in Austin to a nonprofit that sends 1000 underprivileged kids to camp every summer for free. That’s where I mainly donate my time right now, but I’, always looking for new ways.”




In the comment section below, what is your best ever book, personal growth experience, deal, way to give back, or biggest mistake?


Friday Facts – Best Real Estate Investing Advice Ever Lightning Round Q&A

Learn this week’s Best Ever guest’s best ever books, real estate deals, ways to give back and biggest mistakes


Kelly Smith from JF853: Only 4 Criteria Matter to this Lender in Getting You Funded


Best Ever Tweet – “Lending is adding immense value after the risk has been mitigated.” – Kelly Smith


Best Ever Book – Rich Dad Poor Dad


Best Ever Deal Kelly has Done


Kelly’s best ever deal is when she helped a young couple clear their debt so that they could start a business and achieve financial freedom (or at least financial stability).


Kelly – “I would have to say it was a client getting back into the business with his new wife in Fort Worth. He was in and out in about 35 days and it was able to help him do 1 to 2 loans a month. He was able to buy a side business and he and his wife are now debt-free. They felt financially secure and they’re taking vacations…I’m just really glad that we were able to help them get through the loan and make it an easy process for them.” – Kelly Smith


Best Ever Way Kelly Likes to Give Back – Fostering puppies!


“I have been dedicating a large chunk of my personal time…since 2007 to animal welfare in and around Austin. I’ve fostered over 100 animals…[It’s] very rewarding to watch an animal that was…unadoptable become someone’s family member. I have puppies that were born in my house back at 2009 and I still get pictures of how cute they are and what a great life they’re living.” – Kelly Smith


Biggest Mistake Kelly Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Not double, triple, or quadruple checking the numbers or getting outside opinions on her first deal


Kelly – “[My biggest mistake was] being over-zealous to get my first deal and not having a second or third or fourth pair of eyes and opinions to tell me what was and was not a good idea.” – Kelly Smith



Tim Landy from JF854: He Increased Rents by ~$700 and Retained the Tenants!


Best Ever Tweet – “It’s better to walk away from a deal than buy a bad deal.” – Tim Landy


Best Ever Book – Think and Grow Rich


Best Ever Deal Tim has Done


“The most fun I’ve had was [on a] development deal that we built two houses on the lot. It was not only a great learning experience – seeing how to navigate through the city and [realizing that] things can always be better – but it was also a nice return on the back end with not a lot of capital invested.” – Tim Landy


Best Ever Way Tim Likes to Give Back – Volunteering and Donating to St. Jude’s


“I am part of the local St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital Board and throwing our big fundraiser at the end of the year. I’m also starting the golf tournament here in Austin and we always donate as much as we can and do what we can for them. But that’s such an amazing organization that anyone that’s unfortunate enough to have to deal with that circumstances with their child being diagnosed with cancer, St. Jude’s ensures that they will never see a bill for any travel or any kind of treatment and they are getting first class treatment as well…That’s such an amazing cause” – Tim Landy


Biggest Mistake Tim Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Picking the wrong partners, and more specifically, not vetting contractors properly


“The biggest mistake I think [is] partnering with the wrong people and not really vetting who you are getting into business with. I’m talking about specific contractors in my experience. I like getting contractor referrals [from] someone else that I know [who] actually uses them and making sure that you know who you’re getting their referral from: is this a credible person? I got into bed with a contractor that cost us a lot of money because we had to pay someone else to come in and undo all of their work. It set us back a lot…but it was a good learning experience and [I know] not to do that again.” – Tim Landy


Brandy Johnson from JF855: Beginner Wholesaler is CRUSHING It with 9 Properties


Best Ever Tweet – “If you don’t take risk, nothing is gained” – Brandy Johnson


Best Ever Book – Rich Dad Poor Dad


Best Ever Deal Brandy has Done


“I would say the property that I contracted last week that I am closing next week…It came to me from ‘If This Then That.’ It’s a website but they also have an app. You can set it up where if ‘this happens’ then ‘that happens.’ So I set it up so it scrubs Craigslist for different keywords and it sends me a notification if somebody makes a post with that keyword…I have a potential profit of $7000.” – Brandy Johnson


Best Ever Way Brandy Likes to Give Back


“I help as many people as I can for free,” which she accomplishes by posting content and answering questions on different real estate related social media sites.


Biggest Mistake Brandy Has Made So Far In Real Estate


“Not double checking and rechecking my numbers…[by using] the comps. [Now], I pull comps form about 20 different sources to make sure I’m on the money.” – Brandy Johnson



Jerryll Noorden from JF856: NASA Scientist Flips Houses to Fund Robot Project


Best Ever Tweet – “Never rely on your profit to pay for your marketing.” – Jerryll Noorden


Best Ever Book – Rich Dad Poor Dad


Best Ever Deal Jerryll has Done


“A few days ago, I bought a house for $70,000 and sold to for $91,000 the next day. That’s a very easy $21,000.” – Jerryll Noorden


Best Ever Way Jerryll Likes to Give Back – Sharing his secrets


“What I do to give back is I help people rank [their websites]. I share my secrets – these secrets actually do work. I see their websites. I analyze them and I tell people what works, what doesn’t work. Some websites are friendly but not conversion friendly, so I give them the tips and we collaborate together. I’ve made a whole bunch of connections that way.” – Jerryll Noorden


Biggest Mistake Jerryll Has Made So Far In Real Estate


“I stopped marketing because I was waiting on a deal to complete. I would never ever do that again.” – Jerryll Noorden




In the comment section below, what is your best ever book, deal, way to give back, or biggest mistake?


Friday Real Estate Investing Facts – Best Ever Lightning Round Q&A

Learn this week’s Best Ever guest’s best ever books, personal growth experiences and lessons learned, real estate deals, ways to give back and biggest mistakes


Jeremy Brandt from JF832: Bidding for SWEET Leads and How He Farms Them


Best Ever Book


The 4-Hour Workweek by Tim Ferriss


Best Ever Personal Growth Experience and What Jeremy Learned From It


“I’ve taken some amazing leadership development classes. I think the number one personal growth thing I’ve learned over the last 10 years is meditation. It really helps calm the mind and focus on what’s important.”


“Sitting in my chair still for one minute or two minutes, focusing on breathing. Nothing mystical or magical about it. It’s purely the chance to slow your mind down, get the cobwebs out so you can really really focus on things. I’ll just do it sitting in my office with the door closed.”


Best Ever Deal Jeremy has Done


“I bought a company in 2007ish called 1-800-CASH-OFFER that we bought and were able to negotiate really favorable terms around the purchase and turn it into a pretty decent company before the real estate market crashed.”


Best Ever Way Jeremy Likes to Give Back


“I love to volunteer in the entrepreneur community so I am very involved in a group called ‘Entrepreneur Organization.’ I volunteer a ton of time with that group. I mentor a lot of up-and-coming entrepreneurs, people who have start-ups, and to me it matches up my passion for business with opportunity to give back to the community and help other people that are going to be creating jobs in the future.”


Biggest Mistake Jeremy Has Made So Far In Real Estate


“Not focusing on the big picture. It’s easy to get down in the details of things and sometimes taking a step back and focusing on the big picture is really important. I mentioned that 1-800-CASH-OFFER company that we bought was a great deal when we bought it but three years later, the real estate market crashed and we lost a ton of money on the deal. And so, that experience taught me a lot more to look into the future. When the real estate market’s hot, it’s great, but I saw dozens of my friends go bankrupt that had millions and millions of dollars the year before…It’s really taught me that in the highs, you have to be cautious and looking forward and preparing for the lows, that evens everything out.”


Click here for a summary of Jeremy’s Best Ever Advice


Ron Sasson from JF833: How Artificial Intelligence is Used to Filter and Delivers HOT Leads


Best Ever Book


Start with Why by Simon Sinek


Best Ever Way Ron Likes to Give Back


“I do work with children. We volunteer at different schools and we work with students who have low start ups and we try to give back [by providing lessons] from our own experience of our own journey and sharing our story.”


Biggest Mistake Ron Has Made So Far In Real Estate


“Definitely choosing the right partners is absolutely critical. More than the resume, it’s got to be an intuitive fit.”


Dan Faller from JF834: Cheap Boise Developments and an Apartment Services AUTHORITY


Best Ever Book


“The most popular book in the world and that’s the Bible. People are surprised when I will tell them that in the Bible, all the keys of success…are there.”


Best Ever Personal Growth Experience and What Dan Learned From It


“As far as growing, I think it’s a daily thing. I just grow daily by my own experiences and I have the opportunity to observe the experiences of a lot of other investors.”


Best Ever Way Dan Likes to Give Back


“We give seminars and we give tradeshows. We do…the tenant screening. We publish a magazine. We have an insurance program here. We have a brokerage division where we help people buy and sell. And we’re giving back in that way to the industry… We also do consulting.”


Biggest Mistake Dan Has Made So Far In Real Estate

“One piece of real estate that I lost money on was down in Texas. I went out of state and there was a financial advisor who’s putting money into it and said it looks like a good deal so I did it. I didn’t even go down there and look at the property. If I had, I wouldn’t have gone into it. I lost a couple hundred thousand off that deal”


“It’s pretty hard to go wrong in real estate, but I did it. I just trusted somebody else who said this is a good deal, rather than examining it myself and putting the numbers together and looking at the neighborhood.”


Max Maxwell from JF835: $10,000 in 2 Days, Using a VA, and How Even New Guys Can Make a KILLING!


Best Ever Book


Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki


Best Ever Personal Growth Experience and What Max Learned From It


“I would say my last deal…was kind of a good growth experience for me. It allowed me to listen more and find the actual problem that I needed to solve for the seller. Don’t become a real estate investor, become a problem solver


Best Ever Deal Max has Done


“I found a probate deal while driving for dollars and I got the house under contract for $40,000. I advertised it for $65,000 and I end up letting it go for $54,000. So I netted $14,000 on that deal in 4 days.”


Best Ever Way Max Likes to Give Back


“I like to empower people. I’m on the Facebook groups a lot and I see a lot of people asking questions that don’t have the knowledge of where I was…6 months ago about wholesaling. I try to let them see the greatness within themselves and that anything they set their mind to, they can do it.”


Biggest Mistake Max Has Made So Far In Real Estate


“On the deal that I said was the Best Deal Ever. I made $14,000 on it and I accepted the first offer, but 4 hours later, I got a full price offer at $65,000. I sold it for $54,000 and I could have got $65,000 so I would say hear more than one offer but don’t take too long to actually take the offer.”


Click here for a summary of Max’s Best Ever Advice


In the comment section below, what is your best ever book, personal growth experience, deal, way to give back, or biggest mistake?


golden rule

The Advantages of Following the Golden Rule During a Down Economy


Currently, and for the past year or two, parts of Canada have been in a recession. However, Alberta native Benjamin Loates, who is a top producing real estate agent, has been able to stay ahead of the curve and not let his business be negatively impacted by these tough times. In our recent conversation, he explained how to successfully approach a down economy in order to keep your business going in the right direction.


Back to the Fundamentals: The Golden Rule


During a down economy, Ben finds it best to revert back to the raw fundamentals that created his initial success. These are the things that he did in the beginning of his career that got him clients and got him referrals. When starting out, Ben took in new clients and treated them like gold. He performed at his absolute best and tried to make each person feel like they were his number one customer.


This strategy, or Golden Rule, works especially well during a down economy, because it keeps his business flowing through client retention and referrals. In general, people want to work with quality human beings. But when business is down, character may be an even more important trait for a real estate professional to have. There is a reason that certain people always do well, whether the economy is good or back. Ben believes that it is because they operate fundamentally in “other-oriented” principles that are unshakable.


Golden Rule’s Manifestation


This mentality manifests itself in two main ways.


First, Ben doesn’t cut corners. One of the biggest cut corners is placing money above the person you are working with. So, Ben does everything he can, within reason, to refrain from putting his own self-interest ahead of clients. He is willing to make sacrifices, both financially and time-wise, to help his clients achieve his or her objective.


Secondly, Ben believes that this mentality, combined with not cutting corners, makes him act smarter and consistently. He prides himself on doing a lot of social media – Instagram and Facebook live – to educate current and potential clients. He also does the groundwork of calling people, networking, joining business groups, etc. Ultimately, Ben says it allows him to “not suck.”



Golden Rule Example


Ben operates from this Golden Rule mindset for every client interaction he has. A great example is when he gave up a portion of his commission to help a client close a deal. Ben and his client were in negotiations on a primary residence and got to the point where the buyer and seller were off by $3,000. Ben contacted the selling agent and stated that if they both gave up $1,500 of commissions, his client would close. After agreeing, he realized that there was a miscommunication. Instead of the $3,000 going to the buyer, it went to the seller. Ben owned the mistake, called his client, and offered to pay the $3,000 out-of-pocket. It turned out that the buyer was absolutely in a crunch and needed the $3,000 to buy the home. Although, Ben’s commission check went from $8,500 to $4,000 in the blink of an eye.


Six days later, Ben went to an annual realtor appreciation event. Much to his surprise, he randomly won a $7,500 all-cash grand prize. Ben attributes this to the power of giving. When you give, everything changes. By operating with the “giving mentality,” you can only increase from that. Ben went from giving away $4,500 to randomly winning $7,500. Is that coincidence or fate?






Top Emerging Real Estate Trends From Tom Ferry, The World’s Number One RE Coach


In the real estate space, there are always emerging trends and changes on the horizon. Tom Ferry, who is the world’s number on real estate coach, partners with different companies and agencies, including Zillow and Bank of America, who specialize in uncovering the latest and greatest movements in the real estate industry. In our recent conversation, he explains the top 3 emerging real estate trends and what you need to do in order to catch the train before it leaves the station!


Trend #1 – We are moving from a “solo entrepreneur” market to a “team market”


Everyone that is productive is gravitating towards the development of a team. As a result, many investors and business professionals in general are going from the “I am the General that has to do everything” mentality, to the “I am going to surround myself with a team of experts” mindset.


Having an experienced team instead of going at it alone has obvious advantages. The main benefit is that a team will out-produce an individual all day, every day. Imagine how unproductive a hospital would be, for example, if the surgeon were responsible for checking you in, measuring your weight, height and blood pressure, and then coming in and saying, “alrighty then, let’s start the surgery!” If that was the case, civilization would probably come to a screeching halt very fast.


As an investor, you need to ask yourself, “am I doing this all by myself or do I have a team?” If you don’t have a team, at the very least, follow up by asking these additional questions:


  • What are the roles that I would want filled?
  • How would I find these people?
  • How would I pay them?
  • How would I structure my new team-oriented business?
  • How will I ensure that these experts will do the things that they need to do?


Tom believes that this is a major trend that is occurring all throughout real estate and that all investors, large and small, must start to contemplate how to incorporate this advice into their business.


Trend #2 – The squeeze of the real estate commission


Another massive change is the overall squeeze of the real estate commission. However, would it shock you to hear that more and more agents that have a measurable degree of separation, in terms of numbers and data to back up their ability to sell a home for more, to sell it in less time, and to do so with a 5-star review on Zillow, are charging 7% as the listing commission? Why? – Because they can!


Everyone else around the country is feeling the squeeze and the compression of commission, so if you are in the commission business, that is a major issue that needs to be addressed. However, similar to the 7% commission agents discussed above, there are methods and systems that you can put in place now in order to ensure that as an agent, you don’t get pushed out of the industry. As an agent, seek out these processes. For other real estate professionals, find the comparable issues in your industry first, and then seek out possible solutions that the competition is neglecting to address.

Trend #3 – Decreasing Speed-to-Lead Rule


About 30 days ago, Zillow completed and published one of the most detailed analyses of the generational behaviors of buyers and sellers – from millennial all the way up to matures – that Tom has ever seen. And if he had to approximate, less than 2% of the professionals in the real estate industry will take the time to read and study the results. The data includes insight into what consumers are thinking and doing, how they are acting, and how much mobile interactivity they have. However, Tom’s biggest takeaway was the data on how important it is that if a consumer clicks on your name on an add, you must respond as soon as possible, literally.


The old speed-to-lead rule – that is, how quickly you respond to a customer after the lead was captured – of less than 5 minutes is really more like 2 minutes and under. According to this study, the difference between contacting a lead in the appropriate modality in 2 minutes verses responding in 10 minutes, 20 minutes, or and hour, is astounding. Out of 100 inquiries, responding in 2 minutes or less results in, on average, 48 appointments. Whereas responding in 10, 20, or 60 minutes results in only 2 appointments out of those same 100 inquiries.


When you start to see that kind of data, you have to say to yourself, “holy @$%&, I have to make some changes, NOW. Tom recommends that everyone read this study from beginning to end, because most likely, you are that investor consumer that Zillow wrote about!

Friday Facts – Best Ever Real Estate Investing Lightning Round Q&A

Learn this week’s Best Ever guest’s best ever books, personal growth experiences and lessons learned, real estate deals, ways to give back and biggest mistakes


Larry Goins from JF811: How to Be Rich and Generous and B.R.A.G. About It


Best Ever BookLessons from the Richest Man Who Ever Lived By Steven K. Scott


Best Ever Personal Growth Experience and What Larry Learned From It – Larry’s best ever personal growth experience came during an interaction with his mentor and renowned motivational speaker Jim Rohn. Larry was complaining about the price of gas, to which Jim Rohn replied, “Larry, the problem is not the price of the gas. The problem is that you can’t afford it.” He has never forgotten that lesson!


Best Ever Deal Larry has Done – Larry’s best ever deal was a wholesale that made him $75,000 in profit. Someone sent him a property, not thinking that they had a deal. However, Larry knew it was a gem. As a result, he got the property under contract for $700,000, with a tiny $500 deposit, and sold it for $775,000, making a quick and easy $75,000 profit.


Best Ever Way Larry Likes to Give Back – Larry, his wife, and his organization love to B.R.A.G. – be rich and generous. They help a lot of different organizations and individuals in the community by not just providing financial contributions, but they volunteer their time as well.


100 years from now, no one is going to care if you flipped 50, 10, 300, or a million houses a year (okay, maybe a million). However, you might have been able to help someone and touch their life, which changed them, their family, and maybe the world, for generations to come.


Biggest Mistake Larry Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Larry’s biggest mistake is entrusting other people without verifying. Therefore, he is now a firm adherent to Ronald Reagan’s “trust but verify” mantra. Larry has had contractors tell him stuff was done and tried to get a draw. He has had acquisitions people tell him, “This house is a great deal. If I had the money, I would buy it myself.” But, you have to remember that, in the words of Larry, “the best fertilizer in a garden are the footsteps of the owner. You have to keep your finger on the pulse of what is going on.”



Phillip Vincent from JF812: 25 WHOLESALE DEALS a Month is Possible Using this Trick


Best Ever BookThe Big Rich by Bryan Burrough


Best Ever Personal Growth Experience and What Phillip Learned From It – Phillip’s best ever personal growth experience came from working under his mentor at his previous company, Faster House. He has never worked at a place that was so well run. He attributed working there as what put him into the position to start his own company, Rematch. Without working for his mentor, he wouldn’t have learned some key lessons, like how to work in a team and how to hire around you. And the biggest thing he learned was that you can be positive and happy while still being successful in business. Many people think that you have to be mean and blunt to be successful, but his mentor taught him that that is simply not the case.


Best Ever Deal Phillip has Done – Phillip recently closed on a deal that made him $300,000 in profit. He purchased the deal from a builder who, in 1968, built a house on 3 lots, with the property being located on the middle lot. Phillip renovated the property and sold it, which allowed him to make back the money he had in the deal. Then, he sold the additional two vacant lots for $170,000 and $130,000, making a profit of $300,000.


Biggest Mistake Phillip Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Phillip has an insatiable drive, so whenever he sees cranes in the sky or new projects going on around town, he feels like he isn’t doing enough. Early on, he didn’t understand that when you say you want to have X amount of rentals, it starts with buying that first rental. It doesn’t happen all at once. Investing is all about taking action, and not just talking about it. No one is going to give you the right time to start building for your future. The biggest mistake Phillip made was delaying in picking up a house per month and slowly building his portfolio.



Krista Testani from JF813: $50k Rehab with a Million Dollar Multifamily Return and Why Who You Know Matters


Best Ever BookThe Go-Giver by Bob Burg


Best Ever Personal Growth Experience and What Krista Learned From It – Krista’s best personal growth experience occurred when she went through a 9-month self-development program called Momentum. It was powerful, in that it focused on the value of giving back, whether it is giving back in a business sense, in your own neighborhood, or in your child’s school community.


Krista learned the value of giving back and the importance of taking that responsibility seriously, which is by far the most important thing that she has ever taken away from any personal development experience.


Best Ever Deal Krista has Done – Krista’s best ever deal was her first syndication deal – a 40-unit C-class property located in Atlanta, GA. Since it was her first syndication, she decided to joint venture with a student she met in a real estate program she was enrolled in. Her partner, who new the market very well, was responsible for the lion’s share of the capital raising.


They purchased the property for $1.6 million. The plan was to hold for 5 to 7 years, put in $100,000 in rehabs over that 5 to 7 year period, provide the investors with a 7% to 8% return per year, and upon closing, the investors would receive a piece of the equity gained – 12% to 13%. However, 2 years into the plan, the market was hot, so they decided to test the market and listed it for sale. The received an offer from another local investor and sold the property for $2.6 million. They only ended up putting in $50,000 in rehabs – cosmetic upgrades, including new paint and carpet in the hallways, landscaping, and the installation of a new security system. Also, based on the sale, which was 2 years and 4 months into the deal, the returns for the investors was 45% annualized! Not bad for the first syndicated deal!


Biggest Mistake Krista Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Krista has a personality quirk – digging very deep into the details – that are both a blessing and a curse. It allows her to always “cross the T’s and dot the I’s” in her business. However, she sometimes gets lost in the trees and can’t see the forest, or in other words, analysis by paralysis.


Therefore, she has to remind herself to step back and constantly be aware of the analysis paralysis syndrome, because she knows, from experience, that it can halt her business and stop her in her tracks.



Slava Menn from JF814: How He Turned $10,000 into Over $10MM in Real Estate Developments


Best Ever BookUnique Ability by Dan O’Sullivan
Best Ever Personal Growth Experience and What Slava Learned From It – Slava’s biggest personal growth experience came from leaving his venture-backed start-up. He started a company, brought in investors, and truly believed that he was going to take over the world. However, he burnt out and had to call 19 investors and tell them that he couldn’t grow the company anymore.


While the company is still doing well and is in the hands of his co-founder, the lesson Slava learned was that giving people bad news wasn’t nearly as bad as he expected. He put so much stress on himself, in terms of having to give the investors bad news, but he realized that if you were transparent, people would understand. The investors all knew what being “burnt out” meant, and were, much to Slava’s surprise, actually supportive of his decision.


Best Ever Deal Slava has Done – Slava’s best deal, in terms of financial gains, was a basement condo he purchased in Cambridge for $35,000. After $100,000 worth of rehabs, he sold the property for $300,00.


Best Ever Way Slava Likes to Give Back – Slava likes to give back by volunteering in the communities he invests in. Each week, he teaches entrepreneurship to at-risk youth at a local Boston High School.


Biggest Mistake Slava Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Slava’s biggest mistake was his last sales acquisitions hire. The mistake was not taking enough time to vet him. Slava had the new employee do a test project that was only ½ a day. After that, he hired him.


Moving forward, when Slava is hiring someone, he does test projects that are two weeks. That way, any warning signs that he didn’t catch in the 1/2 test project, he can catch in the 2 week “paid interview.



In the comment section below, what is your best ever book, personal growth experience, deal, way to give back, or biggest mistake?


Friday Fast Facts — Real Estate Lightning Round Q&A

Bob Crable from JF804: Ex NFL Jets Player Shares How Lucrative Mobile Home Park Investing Real Is



Best Ever BookThe 7 Habits of Highly Effective People


Best Ever Personal Growth Experience and What Bob Learned From It – From both his real estate investing and professional athletics career, Bob understood the power of putting yourself in the position where there are no limits on what you can do. While this may seem “pie in the sky,” if you are growing everyday and continuously learning new things, you not only become a better business person, but a better person overall as well


Best Ever Deal Bob’s Done – Bob’s best deal ever is a mobile home community in northern Cincinnati that he purchased with his father-in-law. They purchased the deal for $2 million and recently received an offer for $7 million! However, they turned down the offer because Bob’s investors wanted to hang on to the property. The plan is to eventually sell the community and do a 1031 exchange to purchase a similarly valued real estate asset.


Best Ever Way Bob Likes to Give Back – Bob, being the owner of multiple mobile home communities, likes to give back by providing services (tutors, meals, etc.) to the families that live in his properties. There are many people that have the stigma that individuals living in mobile parks are the stereotypical low-income person. Even though they may be low-income economically, they are great people who need help. Therefore, Bob does everything he can to help them from both a financial and service standpoint.


Biggest Mistake Bob Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Bob’s biggest mistake was giving up his real estate license. He was too impatient and got rid of it back in 1983 before going into a non-real estate related business. While he eventually made it back the real estate industry, he regrets giving up on being an agent too soon.



Vinney Chopra from JF805: His SECRET to Finding and Closing 24 OFF-MARKET Multi Million Dollar SYNDICATIONS After Only Having $7 in His Pocket


Best Ever BookThink And Grow Rich


Best Ever Personal Growth Experience and What Vinney Learned From It – Vinney’s biggest real estate learning was the importance of proper due diligence. You have to hire the right inspectors and the right people do conduct due diligence on multifamily, and really anything, like the books, leases, etc. If not, it can result in purchasing bad deals.


Best Ever Deal Vinney’s Done – 22 months ago, Vinney purchased a multifamily property for $8.7 million. The deal was brought to him by a Fannie Mae lender who provided a supplemental loan on the property as well. After increasing the rents, due to improving the parking lot and conducting extensive digital marketing, the property is 100% occupied with a waiting list and is worth $11.5 million. This valuation was Vinney’s 4-year projection, so he reached it in half the time!


Best Ever Way Vinney Likes to Give Back – Vinney is technically retired, but is working more than ever to help as many investors as possible. He accomplishes this by writing books, recording lectures, and providing anyone who asks with all of the information and documents he has accumulated during his real estate career.


Biggest Mistake Vinney Has Made So Far In Real Estate – Vinney’s biggest mistake was having too many partners, 7, for one of his earlier companies. However, he realized that that was way too many people. Him and his partner were doing the majority of the work, while the other 5 partners were just watching and not being very productive – there wasn’t enough for them to do.


Now, Vinney is the CEO of two companies and they both have very lean, yet powerful staffs. Besides having an in-house management and accounting time, the majority of his employees are virtual assistants located all over the globe.




David Greene from JF806: How He Adds $30,000 Equity to a Cheap Home By Doing This One Thing


Best Ever BookThe Richest Man in Babylon


Best Ever Personal Growth Experience and What David Learned From It – David was totally taken advantage of by his first tenant. He learned that he needed to hire people that are better property managers than him and to pay them to do the job.


Best Ever Deal David’s Done – David’s best deal is a 4-plex that makes him $1800 a month in cash flow, with a total investment of $30,000. A real estate agent, who is like a second mom to him, purchased the property at a foreclosure for $130,000. When they went to the property, the owner’s dog attacked the agent! David drove her to the hospital and stayed with her while she received treatment. The agent was so grateful that she sold him the property for $40,000 less than market value. David purchased the property for $250,000 and was able to raise the rents from $800 a unit per month to $950 a unit.


Best Ever Way David Likes to Give Back – The first way David gives back is by speaking at a conference called “One Life Fully Lived,” where he teaches people how to dream, plan, and live their ideal life, as opposed to taking what life gives them and assuming that is all they are ever going to get.


He also belongs to a group called “GoBundance,” which is a national wealth building fraternity. David spends a lot of time mentoring members of this group, who consist of inspiring millionaires.


Biggest Mistake David Has Made So Far In Real Estate – David’s biggest mistake was being way too conservative during the early stages of his investment career. At the time, he didn’t have a family or other bills to worry about, so he wished he had leveraged more and picked up more deals. If he had, David would have a net worth of $1.5-$2 million higher.


His biggest mistake was doubting himself, doubting the numbers, and focusing on what could go wrong, rather than focusing on what could go right.



Cody Hofhine from JF807: How to Make $250,000 PROFIT in Your First Year of Wholesaling


Best Ever Book The Compound Effect


Best Ever Personal Growth Experience and What Cody Learned From It – Cody always wanted to be an entrepreneur, and his first endeavor was starting an insurance company. He only made $19,000 in the first year, so in everyone’s mind, including his own, it was a failure. However, looking back, Cody realizes that it was the best period of his life. During that year, he and his family’s relationships was fortified and made stronger. Instead of going on extravagant dates with his wife, they would hold hands and walk in the park or buy $1 ice cream at a local art event. This made him realize that it wasn’t about money, rather, it was about really enjoying each other’s company.


Best Ever Deal Cody’s Done – Cody’s best ever deal was obtained through a Facebook advertisement. He put it under contract, and since it was already in great shape, he wholetailed it. Cody hire a staging company come to put in some basic furniture, put it back on the MLS, and about 55 days later, it was closed and resulted in a $73,135.35 profit.


Best Ever Way Cody Likes to Give Back – Cody’s loves to give back by hiring younger members of his Utah community to perform miscellaneous tasks (help with marketing, mow his lawn, etc.) and in return, he pays them handsomely so that they can afford to go on boy scout trips, high school prom, mission trips, etc.


Biggest Mistake Cody Has Made So Far In Real Estate – When Cody first started investing, he was focusing on selling himself to sellers and trying to convince them why they should work with him over anyone else. He didn’t listen and try adding value to their lives, which resulted in him losing a deal to someone who actually listened to the seller’s needs. Later down the road, Cody talked to this wholesaler and learned that that deal resulted in a $35,000 profit. Since Cody focused on “me me me” and not “them them them,” he missed out on an opportunity that could have paid him $35,000. Moving forward, he always approaches sellers with a “help others first” mentality.



Myth Busters: Are All Insurance Policies Created Equal?


In my conversation with Shawn Woedl, who is the lead sales generator for one of the nations leading providers of insurance to residential real estate investors, he debunked the myth that all insurance policies are created equally. He also addressed how much money is being lost due to investors believing this myth to be a fact.


As real estate investors, when purchasing a property, one of our main objectives is to attain the highest cash flow possible. Since cash flow is a function of income and expenses, technically, our objective is to decrease expenses and maximize income. While some expenses are truly outside of our sphere of influence, at least to a degree (i.e. property taxes, PITI, etc.), it is important to understand that for insurance expenses, this isn’t the case.


Hopefully, on the front end of a purchase, you are going through several different insurance agents and brokers to obtain different quotes and proposal options to see where you can get the best price. However, it is also important to note that ‘price’ is not the only difference from policy to policy. The policies themselves are actually different as well because not everything is created equally.


For example, let’s say you receive 2 different proposals from 2 insurance brokers. You discover that one policy is 30% more than the other. At this point, you should ask for a “full coverage comparison” in order to determine the differences. According to Shawn’s experiences, that 30% difference may come from a number of areas. However, the most common thing he sees that accounts for the difference is that the actual policies are not the same. One policy is a special form policy and the more inexpensive option is a basic form policy. And non-coincidentally, on average, special form policies are 30% more than basic form policies. Why is that? Obviously, it is because not all insurance policies are created equally.


Difference Between Special and Basic Form Insurance Policies


Special form policies are considered “all-risk” coverage. Unless there are specific exclusions that are listed on your policy, coverage is afforded to you in the event that a loss occurs. Typically, there are 6 standard exclusions for these types of policies:

  1. Mold and Fungus
  2. Wear and Tear
  3. Sewer and Drain Back-up
  4. Earthquake
  5. Flood
  6. Intentional Tenant Damage


On the other hand, basic form policies are different. Besides the same 6 standard exclusions above, basic form comes with a 4 additional exclusions:

  1. Theft Coverage (for items like A/C units, copper piping, owner’s possessions)
  2. Damage from Ice, Sleet, and Snow
  3. Water Damage
  4. Falling Objects


If you are willing to accept these 4 additional exclusions, you can save yourself 30% per year.


Deciding Between Special and Basic Insurance Coverage


When deciding between both policies, Shawn say’s that theft is the major driver. He uses a tool called “Rent Fact” to determine a properties potential for theft. “Rent Facts” scores a property on a scale between 1 and 100 and compares it against other locations in the immediate area and against the national average. The score takes a number of factors into account, including median income, crime rates, vacancy rates, occupancy type, etc.


Shawn say’s that a score of 30 to 40 is considered a strong neighborhood, meaning that the chances for theft are slim. A score in this range reflects a very solid location with low vacancy, good rent, and probably more owner-occupied properties than rentals. Therefore, basic form insurance may be the better option. However, once a properties score falls below 30 to 40, you may want to consider a special form policy, if available, because the chances of theft are a little bit higher.


Overall, Shawn say’s that it is all about risk and what you, as an investor, are comfortable with. However, the truth still remains. Not all insurance policies are the same, and if your property is in a solid neighborhood, you may be able to slash your expenses by 30% by obtaining a different insurance policy that provides less coverage.


Action item: If you do not know what is and isn’t included in your insurance coverage, call your agent and ask for a detail list. Check to see if you are paying for any coverage that is unnecessary and see what steps need to be taken to change to a different, less expensive plan.


How Real Estate Investing is Like Tinder and The 1% Rule

In my conversation with Lane Kawaoka, who is an out-of-state passive real estate investor, he gave a very interesting analogy as to how he decides whether or not to invest in a specific deal. In order to be as objective as possible, he looks at real estate investing like the dating app Tinder!


When presented with a deal, the first factor Lane looks at is the rent-to-value ratio. Using Tinder lingo, if the property has a rent-to-value ratio of 1% or greater, he swipes right, which means it passes the eyeball test and he is willing to take a closer look. However, if the rent-to-income ratio is less than 1%, he swipes left, which means that it isn’t up to his strict investing standards. For example, if he is looking at a property that is listed for $100,000, if the rent is $1000 a month or higher, it passes. If it rents for less than $1000 a month, he swipes left and moves on. Lane estimated that he swipes left on 50-75% of the possible deals he is presented with. For example, people bring him properties that are listed at $250,000 and renting for $1500 a month (0.6% rent-to-value ratio). Even though the $1500 a month in rent is tempting, he would rather stay in his market (Seattle) for that rent-to-value ratio.


If the property passes the rent-to-income Tinder test, then Lane will get advice from his team on the ground, which is his real estate agent and property manager. He will provide them with the property address and they will do a drive by, looking at both the property, but more importantly, the street. Lane has a lot of faith in his people on the ground because he did his homework, due diligence, and cross checked references in order to make sure he found the best of the best. Therefore, if they say that the property and surrounding area looks good, he has the confidence to put in an offer. But just to be safe, Lane always puts in an appraisal and inspection contingency, so if something is very wrong with the property, he can get out of the deal.


But what about running the financials before putting in an offer?


When Lane first started off, he spent hours and hours running the numbers in Excel spreadsheets. He has an engineering background, so he geeks out on that type of work. However, he realized that he was getting too bogged down by the spreadsheets, which resulted in overkill and a disproportionately lower amount of results compared to the amount of time he was spending staring at Excel. Flash-forward to the present, and Lane assumes that he will collect 70% of the rent after expenses, excluding the mortgage payment. For example, if a property rents for $1000 per month, Lane assumes he will collect $700 after expenses. The typical property he purchases has a mortgage of about $500 per month. Subtract that out, and Lane cash flows $200 per month, which hits his magic number.


Why You Should Do Your Due Diligence After Putting a Property Under Contract

Lee Arnold is a season private moneylender who sees over 200 loan applications a day. In my conversation with Lee, I was able to get a lender’s perspective how he believes investors need to be approaching deals to beat out the competition, especially in today’s competitive market.

The best advice Lee would provide to investors, whether you are a fix-and-flipper or buy-and-hold investor, is to do your due diligence quickly and then fine-tune it after getting the property under contract.

Many markets are heating up, with inventory levels being at 15 days or less, yet Lee sees many investors limping into deals where they are coming to the property with their clipboards and their contractors to perform a detailed financial analysis on the property before actually putting it under contract. While they are onsite doing due diligence work, 20 other investors are putting in all cash offers.

“You can’t steal in slow motion” is an adage Lee likes to use in describing this situation. If you find a good deal, you have to move quickly, or else someone will “steal” it from right under your nose. In today’s competitive market, you can no longer “do your due diligence then write an offer.” If you want to have a chance of actually closing on a property, Lee advises that you must “write the offer ‘subject to’ a contractor inspection and obtaining financing.” Get it under contract, then do your detailed due diligence. However, obviously, you don’t want to go out and blindly put properties under contracts either. You want to find a happy medium. Lee believes this happy medium involves looking a two numbers.


  1. What is the property worth?

You need to understand how to quickly look at comparable sales in the market. Make sure that the comps are very close to the subject property you are looking to acquire and do an apple to apples comparison. For example, if the subject property is 1600 sqft with 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms, then compare it to other 1600 sqft homes within a ½ mile radius that have the same number of bedrooms and bathrooms. In doing so, you will be able to realistically determine what the property will be worth because everything you do as an investor is based on the after repair value (ARV).


  1. What can I get the property for?

Once you determine what the property will be worth (ARV), then you can use that to calculate how much money you can pay for the property.

A quick formula that Lee uses in order to determine this number is the following:

70% of the ARV – Repair Costs = Purchase Price 

Based on his experience, he quickly determines the repair costs using a repair factor based off the year the property was built:

  • Built in 2010 – Repair factor = $6 per sqft
  • Built in 2005 – Repair factor = $11 per sqft
  • Built in 2000 – Repari factor = $16 per sqft
  • If the property is in really rough shape – Repair factor = $25 per sqft

All in all, Lee finds that a general rule of thumb when calculating the repair factor is approximately $1 per sqft per year to bring the property up to standard (with a +/- 10% to 15% variance)

For example, if the property is 1000 sqft and was built in 2000, using Lee’s quick calculation, the estimated repair costs would be $16,000 (1000 sqft * $16 per sqft). Let’s say you run the comps and the ARV is $200,000. Using Lee’s formula, then you would submit an offer for $124,000 (0.7 * $200,000 – $16,000).

Lee has found that this formula accounts for closing costs, capital costs, carrying costs, sales costs, and a 15% to 18% profit on that transaction.

Once you have the property under contract, now is the time to perform your detailed due diligence. At this point, (following the example above) get your contractor out to the property to determine if the $16 per sqft repair estimate was too high or too low.

Also, keep in mind that you should look at these two numbers independently from what the property is actually listed for. Too many investors worry about what the seller’s asking price is, when that number really has no bearing on what you, as an investor, needs to be concerned with. Determine what you need to purchase the property for in order to make the profit that you want. If you can’t get this profit at the current list price or the seller is unwilling to negotiate, then you just simply walk away.


4 Benefits When Investing in a Smaller Area

Here are 4 benefits an investor will have when they focus on investing in a smaller target area:


Spend less time on research

By focusing on a smaller area, you will ultimately minimize the amount of time you spend on market research. Obviously, it takes less time to research a 3 square mile area than it does to research a whole city or zip code.


Truly Master the Area

Spreading out your resources to larger target market or to multiple smaller areas will only give you a basic understanding of the market, compared to spending that same amount of time focusing all of your energies on a single, small area. In doing so, you will truly master the area in no time.

Also, due to the decrease in market size, you will be able to increase the frequency of driving for dollars, and you will have the ability to meet with more of the area’s sellers and investors. As a result, you will consistently be up-to-date with the market values and understand the area inside and out.


Have a Better Understanding of the Competition

By concentrating on a single smaller area, along with meeting with the local sellers and investors, you will be able to see when properties are being purchased, when the property goes back on the market, and what it is being sold for. Therefore, you will also be up-to-date on what the competition is doing. It will be much harder to keep track of all of this information if your area is too large or spread out.


Extra Time

When you eliminate all of the time consuming activities from having such a larger target area, you can take all the extra time to become laser focused on other aspects of your business.

Use the extra time to become educated on areas like the fundamentals of real estate and real estate law. Take the time to become the most competent investor by knowing the market values and market rents better than anyone in your area. Or, simply take the extra time to spend with family and friends!


What are some other benefits to having a smaller target market that you can think of?

100% Occupied? Yawn, That Don’t Matta.

I don’t care what the occupancy rate is.

You heard that right, tell me a property is 100% occupied and you won’t get a fist bump.

Cause occupancy don’t much matta.

You and I could fill up the worst of the worst apartment community so it’s 100% occupied. Doesn’t mean the people in there will pay.

We are in the rent collection business and occupancy might give us an indication but it doesn’t tell us how much moola we’re bringing in.

Want that fist bump?

Then tell me what your economic occupancy is. If it’s 95% economic occupancy you’ll get a bump.

Economic occupancy tells us how many people living in the community are paying. Now, that is a direct correlation to the bottom line.

If it’s greater than 95% economic occupancy then I’ll dress up in a mascot uniform of your choice and we’ll do one of these little numbers…

So, next time you’re reviewing a deal go straight to the good stuff and immediately ask about economic occupancy.

When do you know you’re ready?

In sports, coach tells us when we’re ready to enter into the game. In our professional life, our boss tells us when it’s time for us to be promoted and take it to the next level.

But, in real estate, only we can tell ourselves when it’s time to take action.

So, when do what know we’re ready to start?

I’ve identified four things that, if you have them, then you’re ready to get going.

Ready? Here we go.

1. Baseline knowledge

Having baseline knowledge of the real estate fundamentals is essential. You can get started by reading books, listening to podcasts and attending seminars. Speaking to people in the industry and collecting as many insights as possible.

I personally started by reading the book Investing for Dummies and followed that with Rich Dad, Poor Dad – by then, I was hooked on real estate investing being the #1 way to invest a dollar.

2. Support system

This part has two aspects. First, you’ll need a mentor, mastermind group or someone on your side who has been there and done that. There’s zero reason to do it along without the support of someone with experience. So many mistakes will be avoided and you’ll go light years faster than if you didn’t have someone.

There are real estate haters out there and they will tell you you’re crazy for buying property. They’ll say it won’t cash flow, it’s too much of a headache and it’s not worth all the effort. And they are right if you buy it the wrong way. But you won’t do that. You’re going to buy the right way because you have people helping you who have done it the right way.

Second, you’ll want support from those closest to you. You’ll need to get their approval on investing in real estate because it takes time and energy away from your other commitments you might have with them.

3. Inspired or disgusted

I tell people congrats when they have a problem that’s frustrating them. I don’t say that because I enjoy being punched in the face, I say it because I truly mean it. We are at our best when we’re searching for answers and striving for more than what we currently have.

The scariest and most depressing place to be in life is complacent. Or, “just ok”. Because being “just ok” doesn’t take us to action. We just float on by.

When you’re inspired for more or disgusted by your current situation, then you’ll be ready.

4. Knowing your WHY

Why are you going it and how is it going to benefit others? We have an amazing capacity to do more for others than we will ourselves. Once you list out reasons why you want to invest in real estate and how it benefits others then you’ll be ready.

Without those reasons it will be tough to stay the course when the inevitable challenges come up. And there will be many. But, if you know why you’re doing it and how it will benefit others (i.e. the ripple effect) then you’ll have the proper psychological mentality to push through that stuff and overcome with great results.

If you’ve purchased a property, what other things would you say are needed in order to do your first deal?

If you haven’t purchased a property, what’s holding you back?