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The Importance of Being a Genuine Person In Real Estate

by Engelo Rumora on August 22, 2014 · 11 comments

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Real Estate investing is a numbers game. For anyone that has ever thought about purchasing just one property, all it takes is a few quick calculations and you’ll begin to see the dollar signs $$$.

It’s pretty simple math too. I don’t know anyone that doesn’t enjoy cashing checks each month and really feeling their investments pay off. Just like with any investment vehicle, you need to weigh the risk and the more money you invest the higher the potential return!

People ask me all the time “How do you find such great deals? I also want to buy similar properties.” For this I ask “What are you looking to achieve and what is your end goal?” I mean, if all you want is a check each month there are many other investment opportunities that can provide just that. So many see Real Estate investing as an easy alternative to other financial products, for anyone who thinks this, I give a word of caution.


Yes, it is simple math. Yes, you can make a lot of money.

Yes, it is the best thing I have ever done in my life and so rewarding AND I have made a lot of money. I emphatically ask: Do you like people? Not just people, but strangers? Are you committed to developing long term relationships? Do you enjoy being fully responsible (well mostly) for the conditions in which another family will be living? Would you get yourself out of bed at 2am to go fix someone else’s broken toilet only to find that they caused the problem and not even get a “Thank you”?

Related: How To Get Rid of Crazy Tenants

I have met so many investors that got into Real Estate only looking at the numbers and completely ignoring the people factor. Folks, people are responsible for making those numbers work. They pay each month so we can feel good about cashing the checks. Many of the great deals I find come from those same investors that didn’t think about building relationships with their tenants and where only focused on the figures. They couldn’t stand the interpersonal aspect side of the business. They provided little communication and where unresponsive to maintenance issues because they just didn’t care about the tenants, only the “return.”

When you have a property and accept a tenant you are assisting those individuals to provide for their basic need; shelter. Now don’t get me wrong, this IS a business and if they stop paying, you need to be firm and find the best solution for all parties. You’ll need to check your emotions at the door for some of the similar heart wrenching personal issues I have dealt with over the years, but even at those times you can only do so much.

In Conclusion

I have learned that the majority of people respect themselves and are prideful of their residence, even if they don’t own it, they pay up every month as long as you keep your end of the bargain. Part of that agreement is being able to communicate with them, at times help them out, and even sparing a few moments to share a laugh.

Related: Motivated Sellers: How To Get Them To Say Yes When Normally They’d Say No

In Real Estate, you’re not required to be friends however, you are rewarded if you’re friendly! Above all, YOU MUST LIKE PEOPLE to build a sound and sustainable investment portfolio. A property is just a building, the people pay the rent.

Are you a people person? Do you focus on building trust and relationships?

I’d like to hear your comments below and thanks for reading!

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{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

Nick Vandekar August 23, 2014 at 5:35 am

Very good post and very true. I find the investors we work with who do best are those you describe.


Engelo Rumora August 23, 2014 at 9:11 am

Hi Nick,

Thanks for your comment.

There are many attributes that make a successful investor. Having people skills is a big one in my opinion.

Have a great day.


Lisa DuFaux August 23, 2014 at 9:12 am

I completely agree. I have some friends with rental property who think I am too “giving” when it comes to my tenants and properties. I just believe it is the right way to deal with people, but in addition, it has the benefit of producing loyalty. While my friends are chasing rent, my happy tenants are texting me to let me know they have sent the payment!


Engelo Rumora August 23, 2014 at 1:06 pm

Hi Lisa,

Thanks for your comment.

We always go above and beyond for every tenant and as you mentioned its great to receive those texts that the rent is paid. We even have some tenants that pay us before the 1st :)

Have a great day.


Keith Weinhold August 25, 2014 at 6:18 pm

This is a smart column post, Engelo. Yes, I agree. Real estate investors exist to serve tenants, not exploit them.

Service and profiteering may be done simultaneously.

Personally, my four-fold mission to tenants is to ensure that my Property Manager provides them with housing that is:

– Clean
– Safe
– Affordable
– Functional

If this is provided for my tenants, I am happy. We’re dealing with peoples’ homes here – the physical center of their lives.

In general, I do not add the word “Beautiful” to the list above. Providing “Beautiful” housing amenities and fixtures for my well-kept Class C properties can rapidly erode profitability.

Be ethical, yet don’t be gullible.


Engelo Rumora August 27, 2014 at 7:00 am

Hi Keith,

Thanks for your great comment.

100% agreed.

As you mentioned overcapitalizing on the renovation is not sustainable moving forward and every renovation should cater for the particular area and type of tenants that will be residing there.

Thanks and have a great day.


Chad Carson August 27, 2014 at 8:55 pm

Hey Keith,
I love the distinction and balance between being of service and being gullible. Well said.

I also like your comment about keeping in mind the type of properties you’re fixing. No property should be a slum. but a C-class property doesn’t have to be a fancy place either. If we (real estate investors) could just eliminate the unsafe and unclean part of the equation from rental housing, we would have a much better reputation as a group.


Chad Carson August 27, 2014 at 8:59 pm

Hey Engelo,
Awesome article. Well said.

You explained well that this is not only about doing the right thing by people, but it’s about making sure we as investors are built for this PEOPLE game. It’s all about people.

If you don’t love interacting with people, don’t do any of the active parts of this business – management, wholesaling, real estate agent, working with private lenders, etc. And If you don’t love working with people, you better make a lot of money somewhere else so that you can just be a passive investor with others who do love people.

Thanks for sharing.


Engelo Rumora August 30, 2014 at 10:15 am

Hi Chad,

Thanks for your comment and kind words.

Just to add ti your awesome comment.

People buy people and not products, so its also more profitable to interact and be a people person :)

Thanks and have a great day.


Jamie September 3, 2014 at 3:37 pm

It’s clear that you have to be very determined to be in this line of work! Like you said, sometimes you need to wake up in the middle of the night because someone’s toilet is broken. You just have to be prepared to get your hands dirty because if you are prepared then the bad things that will inevitably happen will not get you down or not have as much of an influence on you.


Engelo Rumora September 26, 2014 at 7:54 am

Hi Jamie,

Thanks for your comment.

“Hope for the best but expect the worst” as the saying goes.

Have a great day.


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