One of the best parts about investing in real estate is that anyone can do it – but that doesn’t mean that everyone can do it. It is one of the few professions that you don’t need a license for, and it can offer true time freedom in that you can create your own schedule. However, for many investors, especially those just starting out – it may not offer steady enough cash flow to be able to quit your regular job until the business has enough income coming in (if at all). Does that mean you can’t do it part time? NO! At FortuneBuilders, many of our most successful students started on a part time basis. However, before you start investing in your spare time, or before making the jump to full time real estate investor – here are some things you should consider.
We can’t deny it. Being involved in the business full-time does give you a decided advantage – assuming you use your time wisely. When we started first began investing in real estate way back in the early 2000’s, I was bartending in New York City, and Than was still working heavily in his Mexican restaurant. However, it wasn’t until we made the jump to full time that our business at CT Homes really started to grow. The ability to handle incoming leads, see new listings as soon as they come on the market and send an offer without having to worry about an employer looking over your shoulder undoubtedly makes growing the business easier. That doesn’t mean it can’t be done part time – today, you can outsource most of these tasks strategically with technology. It’s also important to note that if you aren’t used to managing your time outside of work and are still struggling with productivity on your down time, working full-time in the investing business may not be the best way to go until you develop more discipline.
Regardless of who you are and where you work, you need a constant stream of income. Deciding to invest full-time just because you don’t like your current hours doesn’t make a lot of sense. Working full-time doesn’t guarantee that you will make full-time money, and although you don’t need a ton of money to invest in real estate – there are costs associated with marketing and networking. No marketing and no networking usually equals no deals. And even if you get a handful of good leads – acquisitions, negotiations, and escrow usually takes at least a month or two. This is eight weeks or so that you are not bringing income in and are either living off savings or credit cards. Then if you are intending to rehab, you need to account for the rehab potentially taking up to a year or more if you run into any “stucks” in the renovation process. If you’re questioning going full time, we suggest that It is only after you have established yourself in the business and there is a real financial benefit of your working full-time that you should make the move. Taking a leap of faith may work for one out of 100 investors, but for the other 99 – they are better served staying with their part-time jobs until profits permit a move. It is only when you find you are
A part-time investor is defined as someone who hold a regulars job in which they work at least 30 hours a week. Depending on your income, outsourcing services now can make it incredibly simple to hire help for cheap or implement technology to bare the brunt of the hourly work. Between text messages and iPhones, you may be able to communicate just as well as a full-time investor. Where you will suffer as a part time investor is if you can only use them during strict breaks or after your shift is over. The undeniable benefit of investing part-time is that you still have a full-time salary coming in. This can make some of your decisions a little easier, knowing that you have a cushion to fall back on. You may also have a retirement account that you are contributing to, in addition to any benefits your company provides. These are both real factors in making the decision to break away from your company. Having time to work on new deals during the day is nice, but not necessarily at the cost of paying your own health insurance and leaving you with little retirement income.
Even though most of your education and networking can be done on nights and weekends, many “wanna-be” part-time investors aren’t willing to make that sacrifice. If you do have a full-time job, you will need to find the time to network and learn the business. Building a real estate business is not rocket science – but it does take time and consistent work. If you do not dedicate the time to putting in offers so you have deals coming in, your business won’t get very far. This means attending real estate investment meetings in the evenings after a long day at work. It can also mean meeting realtors and looking at properties on the weekend. It also means putting in hours of due diligence, following up with potential leads, and negotiations with both home owners, realtors, and potentially banking institutions. A good rule of thumb is you need to put at least 15 hours of work in a week to growing your business. That can be on nights and weekends, but the more time you are able to put in on a consistent weekly basis – the faster your business will grow.
This certainly won’t be easy all of the time, but if it means giving up your favorite show once a week or missing the first half of a football game on the weekend – we can promise, the rewards are worth it. Choosing to invest in real estate and growing CT Homes has been absolutely life changing for myself, Than, JD, and our partner Konrad. It has allowed us to improve our lives, our family’s lives, our communities, and give employment to hundreds of people through our rehabs. Now through FortuneBuilders, it also allows us to empower thousands of students all over the country to improve their lives through real estate investing. However, none of this would have been achieved if it wasn’t for hours and hours of hard work. Again I must stress – anyone can do real estate, but not everyone can. It takes dedication, education, and perseverance.