Location is No Excuse

by | BiggerPockets.com

Excuses are the tools with which persons with no purpose in view build for themselves great monuments of nothing. ~Steven Grayhm, Canadian actor

Pretty strong statement, isn’t it? My brother-in-law mentors high school boys and has them say that quote repeatedly whenever he meets with them. Why? Because excuses are dream killers, faith killers, action killers.

Today I’d like to pick on a frequently used excuse among those who are timid to get off the fence and take action towards real estate investing goals.  I’m picking on this one because I heard it just recently and it ruffled my feathers — the excuse of location.  These excuses come in many forms.

“But my market is too expensive!”
“Nobody is buying in my market!”
“Yeah, that worked for him because of where he is, but that will never work here!”

Yes, I am familiar with the old saying “The three most important things about real estate is location, location, location.” In fact, maybe that’s what you’re saying to yourself and it’s holding you back from taking action. Please stop the madness!  There are successful real estate investors in every area — in the most expensive parts of the U.S. in states like California and New York, in rural areas in the midwest, in ridiculously high foreclosure areas like Florida, California, Nevada, and Arizona, and in stable markets that haven’t been heavily impacted over the past few years.   Regardless of your location, you can do it!  Does it mean that perhaps you’ll have to be open minded to the possible need to expand your area of focus by another 25-100 miles? Maybe, but don’t let those few miles keep you out of the game. Be willing to do what others are not.

If location is your concern,  be sure to check the facts to see if they line up:

  • Ask a realtor for a quick favor and have him or her pull up data in the MLS on recent sales (in your county or area of investing interest) the past 6 months.  Make it even more interesting and pull up cash sales!  My friend Matt Rosen in Hawaii told me how surprised he was to see so many cash buyers on record in his local market for very expensive homes ($400K and up)!  There is a lot of money floating in and out of hands for real estate all over the country.
  • Go to local real estate investor gatherings and talk to experienced investors right there in your local market
  • Call the numbers on  “for rent” signs in the area and talk to the landlords — tell them you’re a new investor in the area and just wanted to get some input on their perspective of what’s going on in the local areas they are investing in, etc. (this is a page out of Nick J.‘s book)

With a little bit of investigative work, you will likely find that your concerns are unfounded.   More importantly however is that you have to rid yourself of excuses and become action and solution oriented. Your attitude will make all the difference when it comes to being successful in real estate (or anything else)!

Photo: LowerDarnley

About Author

Shae Bynes is a real estate investor in Sunny South Florida. On her blog, GoodFaithInvesting.com, she provides helpful tips and an inside look at her real estate investing adventures -- obstacles, failures, & successes!


  1. Great post, Shae!

    There are people making money investing and wholesaling in every single part of the country. Each location will have it’s own challenges, but there are always ways around those challenges if you want to succeed bad enough.

    Love that quote, btw. I may have to hijack it and put it on my Facebook page. 🙂

  2. NOW You’re talking!!!

    I do not have a rental closer than 2 1/2 hours drive (one is 8 hours away) and I manage them all long distance. In this day and age, there really is no reason (excuse) not to pull the trigger. It can be done…
    .-= Clint´s last blog ..Using Excel to Make Decisions =-.

  3. Great post, Shae. It goes well beyond real estate. People become handicapped by excuses in their own mind before even attempting to do something (professionally and personally) and, let’s face it, everything worth doing has the risk of failure.

  4. Shae, excellent post!

    Thanks for the shoutouts also:)

    You are so right. Location is mentioned so much as an excuse. Bottom line is every excuse works, just pick one! Excuses are the reasons why people that dont use them sometimes have little competition. As Ben Franklin says….”He that is good for making excuses is seldom good for anything else”

    As Clint and Steph mentioned, there are ways around obstacles if your able to see the silver lining. Todays transparent virtual world makes it very realistic to do deals many miles away.

    Great Post Shae, keep it up

  5. I have to love a post that begins with a Canadian quote!! 🙂

    But it really is true. I do believe that EVERY market has its own challenges just like it has it’s own opportunities.

    But there is always a strategy that works in your market you just have to be willing to work hard to figure out what works for your area. And be flexible because strategies you can use shift over the cycle.

    It’s work to figure it out and shift when something isn’t working … and that is what the real excuse is that people are using isn’t it?! They say it’s location but really its the effort it takes to succeed.

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