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Making a Plan

For each goal, write down what actions you can take that will bring you closer to that goal. Make sure they are not ALL research! The key word here is action. Some examples of action-oriented steps are:

  • I will approach one property owner a week, offer him a cup of coffee, and ask him if he’d consider selling and if so, for what price?
  • I will lower my living expenses and save the difference by changing my living situation (e.g. caretaking or property manager position, smaller apartment or house, living with roommates or parents).
  • I will print 1000 “I buy houses” fliers with my contact number on them and post/distribute 100 fliers per week.
  • Get more ideas at: Starting Out Small in Real Estate

At this point, that fear might start creeping up on you again, and you may feel overwhelmed. Don’t allow yourself to get discouraged, and don’t let your fear convince you to bring down your goals. Even Confucius, who was not a real estate investor, was certainly onto something when he said “When it is obvious that the goals cannot be reached, don't adjust the goals, adjust the action steps.”

Define opportunities that meet your goals. Since waiting for the “perfect” situation to come along is extremely subjective (not to mention unrealistic), imagine some scenarios that would meet your goals, so that you recognize good opportunities when you see them, and feel confident in making an offer. Take out a piece of paper or open a new document and start writing: “I am looking for a…” followed by “I will make an offer if…”

  • Fixer-upper house in the Fleetwood neighborhood that has been on the market for several months already and that I can fix up for less than $25,000. I will make an offer if I can make a down payment of $12,000.
  • Apartment house in the downtown area that is selling for approximately $600,000 and generates $6,000 a month in rent money. I will make an offer if there is a reliable property manager living on the premises and the tenants rarely miss payments.

Consider as many different variables as you can. This is where your research will come in handy, because being aware of your options will give you more flexibility and opportunities for creativity. Some additional factors you might want to define are:

  • How long the property has been on the market
  • Comparables on surrounding properties
  • What the local neighborhood is like (zoning laws, schools, job market, city plans, neighborhood covenants)
  • Be willing to make concessions if a price can’t be reached (landscaping, no interest for a first year, a new car, or whatever else you can offer—get creative!) 

Learn more at The Art of Negotiating

Once you begin to understand the real estate market (you’re familiar with the terms, trends, what to look for) you’ll know what you’re dealing with when an opportunity comes your way.

Read more about: Key Research Factors. Keep up with the industry by regularly visiting our site, newspapers, and real estate blogs, and know under which conditions you’ll ACT.

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