3 Must-Read Commercial Real Estate Investing Books

Key Takeaways

  • Self-education, like reading, is one of the best ways to achieve success and financial freedom as a commercial real estate investor.
  • If you want to achieve a higher percentage of your goals, they should be SMART: Specific, Measurable, Actionable, Realistic, and Time-bound.
  • According to critically acclaimed author Dale Carnegie, there are three fundamental techniques that every entrepreneur should live by: Don’t criticize, condemn, or complain; give honest appreciation; and arouse in the other person an eager want.

Have you ever asked yourself, “should I get started investing in commercial real estate?” CRE investing is not just a great way to take your residential real estate career to the next level, but also a way to set yourself up for future financial freedom. However, making the move will mean taking your self-education efforts to the next level. Luckily, these commercial real estate investing books are ready to help you do just that.

While the technicalities of commercial real estate investing differ greatly from residential, the basic buying and selling concepts are similar. Whether you’re already involved in the real estate industry or you’re completely new to the field, learning more about the benefits of commercial investing will only help you succeed.

Expanding and building upon your education is the key to success for any real estate entrepreneur. I started my career knowing nothing about real estate whatsoever, but I took it upon myself to listen to podcasts, read books, attend seminars, and network relentlessly so that I could stay up to date with the latest trends and technologies, and I recommend you do the same. So if you’re willing to take the challenge, these commercial real estate investing books are a great place to start.

3 Commercial Real Estate Investing Books That Will Change Your Perspective On The Industry

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Whether you spend an hour or two reading first-thing in the morning or have 30 minutes to kill on the treadmill, these commercial real estate investing books should be at the top of your list:

1. ”The Commercial Real Estate Investor’s Handbook: A Step-by-Step Roadmap To Financial Wealth” – Steve Berges

Do you need step-by-step instructions taught by a pro? If so, The Commercial Real Estate Investor’s Handbook should be your next read. Presented in an easy to follow layout, Fisher makes his content relevant for both newbie and seasoned investors, alike. The book jumps right into talking about different types of commercial real estate (i.e. apartments, office building, retail stores, shopping centers, strip malls, industrials sites, etc.), and goes on to explain different career and financing options within the sector. Fisher is concise and straight to the point. He defines exactly what you need to know and makes sure to highlight key concepts along the way.

One of the most helpful aspects of this book (located right in the third chapter) is Fisher’s map for setting SMART real estate goals. If you are unfamiliar with the theory for this method of goal setting, know that SMART is an acronym for Specific, Measurable, Action-oriented, Realistic, and Timely. Fisher explains that investors who set goals using the aforementioned criteria, will be far more likely to achieve those goals.

After completing this publication, you will have a better understanding of budgeting, be more financially literate, and, best of all, be capable of handling whatever commercial real estate issue arises during your first deal. If you’re deciding whether or not commercial real estate investing is right for you and your business, Fisher’s anecdotes will lead you towards the best choice.

2. ”How to Succeed in Commercial Real Estate” – John L. Bowman

Avoid falling into another “get rich quick” scam by reading John Bowman’s How To Succeed In Commercial Real Estate. The book provides a straightforward overview of what it takes to pursue a lucrative career in buying and selling commercial real estate, but Bowman wants people to know that this line of work is not for the faint of heart. While beginner investors are welcome to indulge in this read, the content does get technical. After skimming over the basics, Bowman delves deeper into more intricate strategies for financing, sales, negotiations and contracts. In doing so, he leaves no questions left unanswered.

The heftiest chunks of the book cover both technical and practical knowledge (think laws, regulations, construction, technology, appraisals, environmental issues, leasing vs. selling, etc.), along with a step-by-step guide to running a winning marketing campaign (think cold call strategies, creating a buyers list, building relationships, generating leads, etc.). In my opinion, however, the most valuable portion of the book lies within the chapters that detail the importance of ethics and integrity. Bowman does a superb job defining professionalism and how every entrepreneur should hold themselves in any investment transaction. He discusses the basics of salesmanship and teaches “the fact that salesmanship is not a dirty word—in all aspects of life it helps us succeed.”

The anthology concludes by shedding light on what to do if (and when) you inevitably strike out. Bowman advocates a can-do attitude and finishes saying, “Our successes in commercial real estate, and life for that matter, often are consequences of our beliefs and attitudes. Eliminate self-defeating attitudes and beliefs because they will only hurt you.”

3. ”How To Win Friends And Influence People” -Dale Carnegie

Not directly related to commercial real estate (and nearly a century old), Dale Carnegie’s How To Win Friends And Influence People still remains at the top of our recommendation list for CRE investors – and any other entrepreneur for that matter. If you’re looking for a read that is both entertaining and educational, look no further. Carnegie manages to capture an audience with his informal tone and anecdotal storytelling style all the while teaching readers legitimately useful life and business lessons. You may have to tear yourself away from the business textbook shelves and walk down the “self-help” aisle to find this book, but once you do, you’ll be glad you did.

To let you in on some back story, know that Carnegie started his career not as an author, but as a teacher of public speaking. He lectured at local colleges and YMCAs and eventually gained enough popularity to sell out hotel conference rooms across the world for his renowned public speaking events. After conducting his first 14-week lecture, where he handed out weekly class syllabi, he was immediately approached by a publisher and thus was reborn as an author. So know that when reading Carnegie’s book, you are in the hands of a critically acclaimed professional.

Carnegie’s opening chapter begins bluntly by announcing to readers the 12 specific things they will learn from reading his novel. From increasing your influence, prestige, and ability to get things done to enabling you to win new clients to making you a better speaker and a more entertaining conversationalist, Carnegie covers it all. If you’re looking for a little sneak peak, read on to discover Carnegie’s fundamental techniques for handling (even the worst) people:

  • Don’t criticize, condemn or complain: Carnegie explains that it is human nature to dislike fault. Therefore, if you want to build a relationship with a potential client, business partner (and even friend) it is of utmost importance to avoid criticism. When we attack an opponent, he or she will become defensive and resent his critic, resulting in a lose-lose scenario for both parties.
  • Give honest, sincere appreciation: Honest appreciation brings the best out in people, according to Carnegie. More than flattery, meaningful gratitude is a powerful tool that should not go underutilized.
  • Arouse in the other person an eager want: The goal of any business transaction is for both parties to mutually achieve their objectives, right? This means, we must often surrender our own perspectives in order to adopt those of our competitor (for a brief time, at least.) You can of course clandestinely combine your wants with an opponent’s desires so that he or she is eager to work with you both now and in the future.

Don’t waste another moment doing anything other than reading these commercial real estate investing books if you want to achieve success in the industry.

Have any other book recommendations? Share your favorites in the comments below.

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