Real estate is a results oriented business. There are many things you can do to help you achieve your goals, but unless you are proactive, you will have a hard time realizing anything – let alone profits. It can be easy at times to fool yourself into thinking you are working hard or making progress, but sooner or later you will be judged on your actual results. You may have a handful of deals in your pipeline, but how many are you actually going to close? It is not enough to be busy and keep yourself occupied. As an investor reliant on yourself to generate income, you need to get results to make money.
It takes a certain mentality and personality to be successful when working for yourself. As a self-employed investor, what you put in is what you get out. This pertains to every aspect of your business, from marketing to closing deals. Simply mailing out some letters and waiting for the phone to ring is not the goal, getting deals is. If you do everything in your business to get real results instead of just making an effort, you will get a lot more out of it.
In regards to marketing, it is easy to think you are doing everything in your power to be successful. If you mail to an old list or don’t put in the time to write a quality letter, you can expect poor results. It is far better to take a list of less than 100 and execute your letter to a “T” than it is to mail a large list only once. Marketing is something that has to be done repeatedly, and with conviction. Most contacts aren’t obtained until the fourth attempt. Mailing even the best list just once will have little results. Anyone can find the names of distressed sellers, write up a letter and throw a stamp on it. However, if you really want to get deals, you need to spend time and possibly even money to get fresh leads and commit to sending it half a dozen times. If you are marketing without conviction, you could be waiting a very long time for your phone to ring.
The same can be said about networking. It is a good first step to join a real estate investment club or a local networking group, but you need to be proactive. Simply showing up and sitting in the back without talking to anyone is a waste of time. This isn’t college, where you get credit for showing up. Every investment club meeting is an opportunity to meet people in your area that are actually doing deals. If you are going to spend the money to join the club and the time to drive to the meetings, you might as well get everything out of them that you can. Show up early with business cards in hand and be prepared to meet people. You never know what contact you will make or what you will learn. If you really want to grow your network, you need to get out there and really get after it. Anything else is a waste of time and money.
It is also important to recognize that your goal is to actually close deals. Having deals in your pipeline is great, but you eventually need to push them towards closing. This means setting firm dates and getting firm answers from your sellers. If you are working with lenders on short sales, take the appropriate amount of time. However, sooner or later you need to draw a line in the sand and either have them accept your offer or you need to move on to the next deal. The same case can be made with wholesales and rehabs. The best investors recognize where to best allocate their time and which leads will bear fruit. Do something with your deals every day to either get them to closing or move on from them.
There is really not that much that separates you from the next investor, other than your determination to actually accomplish daily tasks and achieve goals. If you come up short, you need to understand why, as to prevent it from happening again. If a mailing is unsuccessful, get to the bottom of the cause and make changes to fix it. If you want to grow your network, take real steps to make it happen instead of writing down things you want to do. The real estate business affords you the freedom and flexibility to get out of it what you put in.