Anyone can become a successful real estate investor. You don’t need a license or a certificate to get started. There is no class to pass and you don’t need an office to close your first deal. It is not uncommon for new investors to hit the ground running. Closing a few deals may make you feel successful, but it can also be fool’s gold. If you don’t continue to do what brought you success, it will go away as quickly as it came. Building a successful business is only the beginning. How you handle your success will often tell just how long it will last. There are things that you should focus on everyday to help build on your success.
Remember what made you successful: When business picks up, it is easy to forget what brought you success in the first place. You become pulled in a dozen different directions and time becomes limited. Every now and then you need to take a step back and look at your business. Look at where your deals came from and whether they will continue. Make a two minute phone call to the realtor or attorney and thank them for the lead. This may not seem like much, but they will definitely remember it. Look at what you are doing well and where you may need to improve. Closing deals is the end goal but you need to keep your pipeline full. If you don’t focus on what made you successful, you will end up searching for business.
Continue to grow your network: Networking meetings can be boring at times. As productive as some are, they can also be difficult to get through. Even though you may be busy on a current deal, you need to always make time to network. Things may be going great right now, but without new contacts things will eventually level off. This means taking at least one hour every week to focus on building your network. Make phone calls, send emails and visit someone in your network. If you neglect the source of your last six deals, they will start sending their business elsewhere. There are networking opportunities with everything you do. Every deal you close has many people you should network with. It is important to reach out to everyone as soon as your deal closes. If you become lazy with your networking, you will feel it in your business.
Build a strong team: Everyone that you work with is important. Your realtor, attorney, mortgage broker and contractor all play a part in helping find and close deals. When you are focusing on closing deals, it is easy to develop bad habits. Things may be going well so you just look the other way. It is important to look at how you can improve your team. There is an impulse for investors to try to do everything themselves. The best investing businesses are where everyone knows there role. Instead of telling your contractor how you want things done, they should already know. Your realtor should only show you properties that you have a real interest in. If someone on your team is creating more work than they are worth, you need to find someone else. Success can cover up a lot of mistakes, but you need to always build the best team possible.
Can you do things better?: Your latest direct mail campaign may have yielded a few deals but was there money left on the table? There are many areas of your business that you can do better. Even if you can’t do them better there are more efficient ways to do them. Make it a point to find ways to save money or time with everything you do. The money you save can lead to more leads and increased business. By accepting the way you do things, you never know if there is a better way to get things done. Think back on where your business was a year ago. Things you do today, you may have never thought of just twelve months ago. If you aren’t open to change, you may be left behind.
Never be satisfied: You need to strike while the iron is hot. You may only have a brief window for success. This doesn’t mean that you can’t be successful long term, but there may be increased competition for deals. By not taking advantage of as many opportunities as you can, you will be disappointed if business levels off. There are dips in even the most successful businesses. Instead of looking back when things are slow, you should focus on getting new business. Make small goals every week that will grow your business. Closing a deal is great, but that feeling will fade away if you don’t have a fresh one behind it.
Becoming a real estate success means never being satisfied with whatever you have going on in your business. Take the same approach, regardless if you are looking for a deal or have five you are working on. True success means that you have a steady stream of new deals coming in while current ones are closing. The minute you forget what made you successful, your business will begin to suffer. Be proud of your accomplishments, but handle success the right way.