Marketing Machines, Spec Houses, Flipping & Wholesaling | Podcast

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While most investors think of real estate investing as buying an ugly property and making it look good, today we sit down with an investor who runs a highly successful investing business that focuses heavily on investing in new home building, along with wholesaling and flipping as well. Tucker Merrihew, the owner of TTM Development Co in Portland, Oregon, shares a ton of great advice on creating a sustainable and automatic lead funnel, as well as numerous tips on a variety of investing techniques.

Read the transcript for episode 22 with Tucker Merrihew here

In This Show, We Cover

BiggerPockets Podcast _ Real Estate Investing and Wealth Building 9.42.11 AM

  • How a “failed personality test” led to real estate investing
  • The early mistakes that caused major problems for Tucker
  • Do condos make good investments?
  • How to build a marketing machine
  • Direct mail “shock marketing
  • Why knocking down houses might make you money
  • Tucker’s online marketing strategy
  • The financial benefits of spec building
  • Tips for finding and working with great contractors
  • Finding deals when the MLS is too competitive

Listen to The Show on iTunes (Preferred Method!)

Click here to listen on iTunes.

Listen to the Podcast Here

Links from the Show

Every Door Direct Mail
BP Podcast 010 : Flipping Houses 101 with J Scott
Tucker’s Lead Generating Website

Books Mentioned In The Show:

Donald Trump Books
How to Win Friends and Influence People – Dale Carnegie

Tweetable Topics:

“There’s motivation in weird places sometimes.” (Click to Tweet)

“When investing in real estate, you’ve got to have a website.” (Click to Tweet)

“To be successful in real estate investing, you gotta build momentum.” (Click to Tweet)

Get in Touch with Tucker

Tucker’s BiggerPockets Profile
Tucker’s Company Website:
Tucker’s Facebook Page:
Tucker’s “Lead generating direct mail post cards” below:

TTM_George Buys Houses_POSTCARD_7 (2)
Screen Shot 2013-06-12 at 12.43.04 PM

About Author

Thanks for checking out the BiggerPockets Real Estate Investing & Wealth Building Podcast. Hosts Joshua Dorkin & Brandon Turner strive to bring top-notch educational content and interviews to our listeners -- without the non-stop pitch prevalent around the industry. With over 180,000 listeners per show, the BiggerPockets Podcast has become the biggest real estate podcast in the world. But don’t take our word for it. We’re the top-rated and reviewed real estate show on iTunes — check it out, read the reviews on iTunes, and get busy listening and learning!


  1. Alex Antonuk on

    Hi Tucker,
    Thank you for the Podcast. There was a lot of great information you provided. Also, I wanted to let you know that I checked out your website and you have great quality choices in your rehabs. My question is you mentioned you stage all your homes, but your photo gallery only shows decore items, no furniture at all, do you not use furniture to stage your homes? I am asking because the decore and accent pieces help pop the photos, and I prefer to see homes w/o furniture, but most staged homes have furniture as well. So I was just wondering if your type of staging helps you in selling your homes faster vs using furniture as well?

  2. Hey Alex-
    Check out the nicer homes on our “sold projects” page and you will see that we fully stage all of the higher end homes that we have done. I agree that fully staging houses really helps sell them faster and for quite a bit more $$…..especially in the higher end market that we mainly operate in. Also thanks for listening and I’m glad you like the podcast.

  3. Paul Grgurich on

    Another excellent podcast gentleman – Tucker that was really some great information! Its really cool listening to somthing that is so down to earth, you’re a natural. As a nubie sucking up all the information as much as possible its really great to listen to ya’ll! I am more and more excited about getting out there every time I listen to you guys!!

  4. I appreciate these podcasts so much. I often find myself spinning my wheels and not really knowing what to do next. You and your guests help to keep me plugging along. Love it!

  5. Saw Tucker at our local REIA and was impressed with the presentation. High quality much like this podcast. Learned a lot.

    Would have liked to hear a little about the company that has the RE license and how you can be a wholesaler and have a company with an agent. This has been a topic onto itself at BP.

    Fellow Portlander,

  6. @Jeff –
    I’m glad you like both my REI presentation last year and this podcast episode. The way we have the in house real estate company set up is like this: I am part owner of TTM Realty which is a net branch office and DBA (doing business as) under the umbrella of another Real Estate Brokerage company. Also this company is a separate entity from our Real Estate Development company. I then have an agent for TTM Realty that works in our office that lists and sells all of our projects, which gives us complete control of the sales process. We disclose everything to all the sellers we come in contact with, so its been a great system for us, not only for keeping our sales costs down but also being able to control the process with our systems.

  7. Jay Kaltenbach on

    Great podcast and great info from Tucker……I really like the podcasts and listen to them all the time on my way to and from my “day job”. I will continue to listen to them as it helps keep me motivated, as a newbie, to get out there and make real estate investing work.

  8. Melodee Lucido on

    WOW Tucker you are like the Super Investor!! The interview blew my mind to the point that I ALMOST couldn’t relate. BUT I can relate because our path unfolds in front of us as we TAKE ACTION. We don’t always know where we will end up. So I was amused at the magic of your story.

    One thing I was wondering—verrry much—-about is the in house person doing the letters for you. I am entertaining this myself. However, I don’t know the costs involved. I would provide the names and addresses and then they would simply fill it all in and highlight certain phrases in the mailing, stamp and mail.

    Being of the ocd type I am a perfectionist in my mailings and am not totally sold on the automated direct mail systems out there (please don’t take offense my great fellow BPers here that work in that industry). My returns have been very good—even before I totally knew what I was doing. I just have a knack for direct mail.

    Is this something you would like to share here?

    Thank you so much Josh, Brandon and Tucker for another inspiring hour and some giggles : >

    • Melodee –
      Thanks for listening to the podcast episode…..I wouldn’t say I am a super investor, but rather just a guy who gets up everyday and tries to make my business better and more profitable. If you treat your real estate business like a real business you WILL get results and your business will grow right in front of your eyes. The biggest problem I see with people is that they don’t treat it like a full time business, so they loose momentum and fizzle out.

      As for direct mail I would suggest you hire someone for around $10/hour and get them writing yellow letter and hand addressing printed letter envelopes for you ASAP! This action in itself will grow your business much more than you would ever think. The reason is because it forces you to act as a business owner who is working on your business instead of in it doing $10/hour tasks. In addition your volume of direct mail will increased dramatically which in itself will increase your deal flow as long as you can handle processing all the additional leads that come in.

      Just remember you have to constantly push yourself past being comfortable in order to grow…..and good is good enough when it comes to getting direct mail out the door!

  9. Julie Marquez

    I need to know how big George is! You should place him next to a tiny house on your post cards! I am browsing your website, and you have some gorgeous homes in your portfolio. We used to have Street of Dreams in Seattle, but it stopped a while ago. I loved going as a kid.
    Have you done any ADUs? I’ve been looking into them to add value to properties, and I see a lot referenced to Portland and their ADU friend laws. Great podcast, too!

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