The biggest reason why real estate investors fail is because they avoid asking themselves tough questions. Regardless if you are just starting out or if you have been in the business for years, the real estate industry is one in which you need to constantly examine where you are, where you are going and how you will get there. The minute you think you have everything down or think you have it all figured out, the business will throw you for a loop. When it does, will you be ready to adapt or will you be one of the many investors looking for a new line of work.
Before you make your first offer, there are literally dozens of questions you should be asking yourself. Do you have enough money, where will you invest, what is your time frame and who are your business partners?. This is just the tip of the iceberg. Once you start with the first question, your answers will lead you to where your business will ultimately end up. Many investors think the business is easy and will look for the shortest path to success instead of the one that is best for them. By asking questions and giving honest answers, you can assess where you are, what you need to improve and what your realistic goals and outcomes will be.
One of the reasons that asking these questions is difficult is because the answers are not always easy. If you were to ask yourself what you would do if your rehab doesn’t sell in 90 days, the answer may scare you. Instead of thinking about the worst case scenario before it happens, they avoid it all together and hope it doesn’t get to that. The same can be said for what you would do if you run out of money on a deal or if your spouse gets laid off from her job. Planning for the worst and thinking about this does not mean you are a negative person. It simply means you are realistic and you are prepared for whatever comes your way. Don’t be afraid of the answers, you need to ask the questions.
In addition to planning and preparation, you should feel comfortable asking questions to everyone on your team. You can find information out from a book or online, but nothing will ever replace real world experience. The more questions you ask, the more you will commit it to memory. When a similar issue happens on a future deal, you will be prepared to act. If you are uncomfortable asking questions to your realtor or attorney, you should really consider finding new partners to work with. These people work for you and will only get paid when your deal closes. Sending a quick text message or email and not getting a response in a reasonable amount of time should not be acceptable. You should know where to draw the line, but if something is concerning you have every right to find out the answer.
Eventually, you will be giving the answers to new investors you meet at meetings or in networking groups. To get to that point, you have to ask questions along the way and in every step of the process. If you are not asking questions, you are doing yourself and your business a disservice.