Staying Positive as a Real Estate Investor

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Whether you are a brand new investor who has never done a deal or old pro with hundreds of deals under your belt, you need to realize you have absolute control over the single best ingredient for your success.

What is it?


First let me speak to the new investors.

So you have decided that real estate investing is your long term plan to wealth? Now what? What are you doing every day in your business? Are you running around looking for some silver bullet? Are you spending hours in the bookstore, library or on the internet?

How is that working for you? Making any progress? Frustrated Yet?

Now let me talk to the investors that have done a deal or two.

Congratulations you took action and you put some money at risk. How is it working out? Any surprises yet? Are you seconded guessing yourself? Are friends or family calling you crazy? Is financing the next deal just too difficult? Is competition rising and you just can’t find a deal?

How can you keep moving forward with all the chaos and change?

Finally let me speak to the investors that have been in the game for more than five years.
Make any mistakes over the last 5 years? Did you lose or almost lose a property? Do you wish you bought less? Do you wish you sold more? Does the model you were using so successfully five years ago work today?

How can you move forward when you are stuck with a few mistakes made in the past and you just can’t shake them?

Why did I want to talk to each group individually? A Couple of reasons.

First, I wanted the brand new, never done a deal investors to know that the people ahead of them on the real estate acquisition scale have problems, doubts and concerns as well. Said another way there are no magic thresholds of deals where issues simply disappear. You could have done one, ten or fifty deals and still have obstacles to overcome.

Second, I wanted each group to see that while the challenges or questions might be different there is still one variable that holds constant across each group. Your attitude when faced with questions, concerns or obstacles is your best tool.

The attitude of the individual will be the key ingredient to their success. A positive attitude will keep them moving forward and working on making their business stronger and more profitable. While a negative attitude will cause the issue to grow, the business to suffer and in most cases an exit from the business.

I have said it before and I am sure I will say it again. Real Estate Investing is a simple business but not an easy business. Always remember if it were easy everyone would do it.

Now let’s put a little meat on the bone.

1) Hopefully I have made myself clear and you now understand that you control your attitude regardless of how many deals you have done.

2) A positive attitude means you keep moving forward while a negative attitude means you are stuck and potentially moving backwards.

3) Momentum is a powerful force in this business and a positive attitude keys momentum working with you and not against you.

4) Positive Attitude without work and effort is simply a sugar high that will lead to a crash and a quick exit from the business.

5) Understand where you are in the real estate investor progression and simply worry about the next step forward. If you have never done a deal and all you do is think about retirement you will fail regardless of how positive your attitude is. You need to be positive and think about what is required to find and secure your first profitable deal and then the second, and then the third, etc.

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Using the Negative REI Press to Your Advantage

The final thing I want to talk about stay positive is actually how to use all the negative press about real estate investing to your advantage. Like you I read and consume a lot of material and some days it is darn right sad. Real Estate is taking a pounding and very likely will keep on taking a pounding for several more years.

You can either fall victim to it and let the press just beat you down and turn you negative on real estate. Or you can be like me and treat every negative headline as another opportunity to do a deal. I love buying from motivated sellers and nothing creates more motivated sellers than negative press headlines. I actually use the negative press clippings as my fuel to look for the next deal.

If you can be a contrarian an actually use the negative press to turn your attitude increasing positive you will do well in the business.

Be Positive it is a lot more fun than being negative!!!

Good Investing

Photo: Luis Argerich

About Author

Michael Zuber is an active buy-and-hold real estate investor who still has a full-time job. Michael is not an agent or broker, and simply uses the internet and agent relationships to drive his business. He currently averages at least one deal a month and has developed laser focus on his 5 step process.


  1. It’s really hard to stay positive in this harsh economy. However, success requires some attitude as well as a lot of sacrifice. I’m with the saying that “it doesn’t have to be perfect, fine is just enough”. If you are searching for perfection then you have a long run before you can get close to it. Staying positive and moving always forward will guarantee you the success that you always dreamed of.

    M Mark

  2. Hi Mark

    Everyone’s situation is different but from where I sit the difference can boil down to how you see a half full/empty cup of water. I know the economy sucks now, I know lots of people are hurting and I also know that if I can find a way to structure deals to benefit all parties that I can be part of the solution.

    I like to read stories about the families that prospered during the great depression. They watched their leverage as it began or got really lucky and shorted the market. Then they picked up once in a life time deals that literally set their families up for multiple generations

    We will get out of this funk eventually

    Good Investing

    • Mark,

      Sorry this article didn’t hit the mark for you. I wrote it because a business partner of mine was getting down on the business due to all the negative news.

      But as you said buy when everyone else is selling and stay positive.

      Good Investing

  3. As an investor, the more negative the news the better (It sounds crazy, but not when it comes to the money)! Then, that just makes it easier for me to get property ta rock bottom prices, and lets me be the one that spurs new economic growth in the area!

  4. Hi Mike!
    Has Mark U stated, “No meat in this article.
    Summary: buy when RE headlines are bad & keep positive attitude…
    Nothing new.”

    Sometimes we don’t need meat, sometimes a reminder to “eat our veggies” is what we need. 🙂

    Thanks for that reminder, it came at the right time for me!

    As a newbie I keep plowing away, slowly but surely making my way to me first deal. Sometimes it gets frustrating to have found several deals that would be great if only the seller would “co-operate” .

    Attitude is what keeps me going, that and the idea of shaking loose the corporate grunge!


  5. Ronnie Sparrow on

    I currently own four rental properties and looking for more. We are looking at a property now where the seller is offering a Land Contract. What can you tell me about these Land Contracts and what do I need to know. It seems like a good alternative for us seeing that we do not have 25% down payment for a market value property. This is a property in a college town for our son. It is a four bedroom four bath built for college students. We will be paying close to market value. What do you think ?

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