|Finding Motivated Sellers: Luck or Hard Work?
Did you just hear about the investor in your local RE club that closed on a deal netting them
$15,000 and they didn't even have to lay a hand on the property? Or what about the person that just
bought that rental house on the same block for 30-50% less that what you paid for yours? Are you at
the point scratching your head and thinking they're just lucky? Or probably that's all they do and
just don't have a life outside of real estate....right?
Somewhere in between total luck and absolute sell-out hours chasing deals is where you should
be in finding truly motivated sellers, or rather having them finding you. It's a weird coincidence that
the smarter I work, the luckier I get finding great deals. Did you catch that? It's not always about
how many hours you put into real estate and how hard you work at your marketing program that produces the
best results which is finding great deals that puts money in your pocket and that's what real estate
investing is all about.
Let me share with you some simple principles in marketing for the independent real estate
investor. You may already be in tune with some of these but let's all take a pulse-check here and
make sure we're on the right track.
1) What Are You Hunting?
I'm asking what types of properties and real estate opportunities are you seeking? The more
narrow your focus and marketing efforts can become to a target group, the greater success you will
experience. If you are seeking wholesale opportunities then you will not gain very much success putting
out "I Buy House/Lease Option" bandit signs next to established neighborhoods. In addition
you will not gain a favorable response direct mailing to pre-foreclosure prospects if the primary weapon
in your arsenal is cash-only deals with hard money lenders that don't go above 70% LTV.
The marketing medium you use and the message you accompany with it that hits the right
target market turns sellers into motivated sellers. There simply is no generic marketing message and
medium that is a "one-size fits all" approach in real estate.
2) Just How Much Money Can You Spend?
Now, we're talking about something that hits home real fast when it's about coming out of
pocket with hard earned money in the "hope" that it will come back to you in the form of truly
motivated sellers. If you're first starting out in real estate investing then it's imperative that you
have a short-term budget to work within so that you're not forgetting about paying for all the other
necessities in life: food, shelter clothing! You simply DO NOT have to have a large marketing budget
to be effective to grow your RE business. One §.34 postcard netted me §8,400, so it's all
about hitting your target market as explained in #1. However, be realistic about what monetary
constraints you have and how to incrementally build your marketing program as you experience more and
3) Track Your Results!
Oh, we miss the boat on this one so much. When you are incorporating bandit signs, direct
mail, flyer campaigns, etc... it can start to get confusing where and if your success rate justifies
the marketing mediums you are using. Tracking your responses and closures of deals is necessary so that
you can identify areas that need to be tweaked or worked on. Most importantly though when you find out
that great mailing list is really working or the flyers in a particular neighborhood is getting tremendous
feedback....then go in for the kill! I mean when you are measuring success and can track it effectively
it allows you in full financial confidence to justify increase in marketing expenditures for areas that
are producing the results desired.
Take a quick check of your marketing program and tune it up if needed so you too can,
"Find All The Motivated Sellers You
Scott Rister is an author and "real world" investor just like yourself.
Scott started investing in real estate over seven years ago for the sole reason so many do which
is to supplement income and eventually replace the corporate job. After learning first hand what
"down-sizing" in the corporate world means, Scott focused more intently on shifting from
emphasis from buying techniques to finding truly motivated sellers. In less than a year Scott has been
involved with over 60 real estate transactions that ended up with a check with his name on it. You can
learn more about his program at
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