How to Build an Extraordinary Real Estate Business in a Sea of Ordinary
Take a look around. What do you see? Everywhere you look you see “ordinary”.
If you look down the road a little bit, there is a very focused buy and hold landlord who only buys 3 bedroom brick ranches in one particular zip code. He never varies from this buying formula. Then there is the rehabber that has a buying criteria so stringent that he throws away most of the “opportunities” other wholesalers and investors send his way; after all, they just don’t fit his criteria. They are too small, too big, not in the right area, they don’t have a basement, and on and on. In other words, they are not perfect.
But if you walk down the block a little further you will stumble on “extraordinary”. Extraordinary is the guy that figures out what to do with all the leads everyone else doesn’t have time for. After all, “they just aren’t right for their business”.
Making Lemonade out of Lemons
Extraordinary has built a reputation around the neighborhood as being one savvy real estate investor. He is the “go-to guy” if you have a property other investors don’t want. He is also the guy that is quietly building a fortune off of leads other investors are throwing away because they just don’t fit neatly into their plan.
Extraordinary started out as a rehabber. That was his primary business. When he stumbled on a lead that was a good deal but it wasn’t really quite good enough for a rehab project, he ran the numbers and determined that it would make a great rental with good cash flow if he just “spruced it up a bit”. So that’s what he did. He put a couple of coats of paint on the cabinets, found some new but rather inexpensive hardware and found a counter top for the kitchen in the closeout bin. Before you knew it, he had a nice looking rental and that was the beginning of his buy and hold business.
It wasn’t too long after that someone brought him a deal that was in an area that was just too far away from where he was located. But extraordinary had learned that there are always multiple options for a property. You just have to dig deep and look for them.
Anyone Can Be a Detective
After getting some comps from a Realtor in this nearby city, he determined that this house was actually a great wholesale deal for someone in that area. So he set out to find a real estate investor to sell the deal to. Since he didn’t know anyone in that area, he paid for access to their tax assessor’s site. It was about $30 for a month, but he knew he could probably find a buyer for this property by spending some time on this site. And, that’s just what he did.
That night he pulled up the property address, and started looking at the property owners for about 3 blocks in each direction. It took him less than an hour to come up with a half dozen names of people that owned multiple properties in that area. That told him that they were “buy and hold” real estate investors. With just a little more detective work he was able to find a phone number for all but one of those people. Then next morning he simply started making calls. Before the end of the day, he had a buyer for the property.
Extraordinary had taken the unwanted lead from ordinary and made a big chunk of cash.
The Choice Is Yours
The one thing I have come to know is that it doesn’t take a whole lot more work to go from “ordinary to extraordinary” and it can have a huge impact on your bottom line. What it does take is a simple decision; you just have to decide that you won’t settle for anything less than extraordinary.
I challenge you to look at your own business and find ways to stand out in your market; to become extraordinary. What can you do differently or better than everyone else?
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Photo: Joi Ito