One of the more common excuses among investors is that there are no deals available. The reality is that there are deals everywhere if you know where to look. Perhaps even more importantly, is a willingness to put in the work. Sending out a few direct mail letters or handing out your business card at investing meetings isn’t really looking for deals. There are potential opportunities every time you are in the car, at a child’s sporting event or going to a family wedding. Like most things, the situation is what you make of it. What you will find is that there are many opportunities that you may have never even considered, if you only take the time to look.
The best investors are those that can see the positive in every situation. They are also always looking for deals. As an investor, you may be in your car more than you are at an office. Take this time to find deals and get to know your local markets. A property with overgrown grass and shrubs could be a sign of a distressed property owner or a bank owned property yet to hit the market. The same can be said about any property that looks like work has been started and not finished. The owner may have run out of money and wants to get out of the project. If you are willing to track down the owner and find their contact information, you will have a leg up on your competition. You may be able to get a deal that you drove past almost every day.
There are many networking opportunities that you need to be willing to go after. It is easy to fool yourself into thinking that you are networking if you show up to meetings and shake some hands. The goal isn’t to get out of the house or the office for a few hours, but rather to make real contacts that can turn into relationships. You must followup with anyone you meet. There are many realtors, attorneys and fellow investors who are looking for someone to work with. This can, and should, be you with a little work and basic follow up skills.
There is a whole generation that does not read newspapers and gets their news and information online. The internet can be a valuable source, but a local newspaper will give you the real feel of an area. As an investor, you can use your newspaper to find deals. There are many foreclosure or preforeclosure lists and countless listings for rents by landlords that really don’t want to own the property. By doing nothing else but calling the property listings for rent, you should be able to find an owner or two that has thought about selling in the past few months. This is a lead that you can cultivate and in time could turn into a real deal. Your local newspaper will also have property listings and most have a substantial weekend edition filled with open houses and plenty of realtor contacts. If you reach out to these realtors, mortgage brokers or attorneys, you will be put on their radars and begin the start of a prospective relationship.
It is pretty easy to get lost for hours on social media. You get redirected to a website or start reading an article and the next thing you know you have wasted half your day. Instead of using social media to kill time you should use it as an opportunity to get business. If you see a realtor listing for a new flip you can ask to reach out to the seller who may be someone you are able to work with. If you see a mortgage broker you can ask them about any new investor programs that can open the door for new deals. Within your friend network you most likely come across a post or two a deal that is dedicated to the real estate business. Instead of quickly passing through these take the time to contact them. You never know who is looking for an investor unless you reach out to them.
Finally, if you are in a rut and looking for leads, you should go back to your closed file database. On every deal that closes, there are multiple contacts that you need to reach out to. Between realtors, attorneys, lenders and sellers there can be up to a half dozen potential business contacts on any given deal. If the deals have closed a while ago, a quick email to say hello could get the phone to ring. If the deal just closed, reach out and ask to go to a lunch or just a quick cup of coffee. These people know you and have already worked with you. Instead of breaking the ice talking about how you would work together, you have a track record and should use it to your advantage. Instead of spending time and money on leads, start with your existing database and everyone you are working with, or have worked with in the past.
There are numerous ways to get deals and opportunities to make a new contact if you willing to do the work. One phone call could open the door to someone who changes your business. Opportunities may not be right in front of you, but they are there if you really look.