In order to be taken seriously as a real estate investor, I must have experience…
In order to have experience, I must do deals…
In order to do deals, I must be taken seriously…
Hmm. Sounds like a Catch-22, doesn’t it?
Well, fear not, young investor! You don’t need to have $1 billion in real estate or properties all over the world in order to be taken seriously as a real estate investor. As a matter of fact, here are a few easy steps that you can take now in order to build your “street cred” and show people that you mean business.
6 Easy Ways to Be Taken Seriously As a Newbie Investor
1. Dress the Part
My folks always used to tell me that it’s better to be overdressed than underdressed. It was true at my junior prom, and it’s true today.
Make a point to dress professionally whenever you plan on meeting with a bank, a property manager, a contractor, a potential renter, etc. Showing up in a suit (or at the very least some slacks and a button down) will do wonders for their perception of you, as well as your own confidence. Let’s be honest. Do you think a bank is going to hand over $100k to a 27 yr old wearing Old Navy cargo shorts, flip flops, and a cut-off sleeve t-shirt with the logo of an emo band they were in back in high school? Look, your band isn’t going to make it. Sorry. That was a decade ago. Take a trip to Men’s Wearhouse and take advantage of their buy 1 get 3 free deals.
2. Get a Professional Email Address
Simple is effective. Get one that has some combination of your first, middle or last names. This makes it very easy to tell someone over the phone or in person. You also avoid a potentially awkward conversation when you have to explain to a commercial lender how to spell “[email protected]”
Good luck with that.
3. Ask Questions
Are you about to meet with a potential property manager? Are you going to attend a real estate club meeting this week? Are you scheduled to sit down with your real estate lawyer?
If so, take a minute and write out a list of questions before you go. I learned more about the process for getting a loan approved by sitting down with a lender and asking him questions for 10 minutes than I ever could have learned from reading a book. Remember, if you are excited to learn, they will be excited to teach.
As Dale Carnegie said, “Talk to someone about themselves, and they’ll listen for hours.”
4. Practice Property Grammar and Spelling
“UR” instead of “You are” when texting your best friend = socially acceptable.
“UR” instead of “You are” when emailing the lending department at your bank = not socially acceptable.
Also, please don’t write in ALL CAPS. It’s like you’re yelling at the computer.
5. Provide Value
Just because you are new to real estate doesn’t mean you have no value to provide. Here’s a few ways you can do it.
- Say “hi” to other new people in the New Member Introductions Forum
- Congratulate people on their success in the Real Estate Success Stories Forum
- Leave comments on the articles in the BP Real Estate News Blog
- Leave a rating and review for the #AskBP Podcast
- Organize a meet-up through the New Local Real Estate Investing Sub-Forums
- Start your own Member Blog!
6. Be Yourself
If there is one sure-fire way for people to NOT take you seriously, it’s if you act like you already have all of the answers.
The real estate investment community is one of the most supportive and friendly groups in the world. This is primarily due to the fact that it’s a relationship built business, and everyone realizes that their next deal could come from anywhere… even from someone who is brand new.
So don’t claim to have done deals all over the world when you haven’t. Don’t claim to have organized $1 billion in real estate transactions when you haven’t.
Just be yourself! You’re probably pretty good at it.
[We are republishing this article to help out our newer members.]
What have YOU done to grow your credibility as a newbie investor?
Leave a comment, and let’s talk.
Note By BiggerPockets: These are opinions written by the author and do not necessarily represent the opinions of BiggerPockets.