BiggerPockets Podcast 137: How to Use Systems to Scale Your Real Estate Business with Sam Craven

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On this episode of the BiggerPockets Podcast, we want to introduce you to a real estate investor who has figured out the secret to scaling his business: systems. Sam Craven, who was last on the BiggerPockets Podcast back on show 33, shares with us the processes he has implemented that have enabled him to build a team, putting him on track to buy nearly 100 homes this year. You’ll love the humor, the advice, and the examples Sam brings to the show and will walk away with new ideas to scale your own business.

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This Show Sponsored By

We just waRealtySharesnted to give a shout out to our podcast sponsor on today’s show: RealtyShares. RealtyShares is a crowdfunding platform that allows you to invest in professionally managed properties without leaving your living room!

Learn more by visiting!

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A huge thanks as well to our Fire Round sponsor FreshBooks.
FreshBooks customers spend less time on paperwork, freeing up 2 days per month to focus on the work they love. What would you do with that extra time?

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In This Episode We Cover:

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  • Sam’s progress since the last time he was on the show
  • What his business model looks like
  • Why he identifies as a “customer service business
  • The importance of building processes
  • What the people in his company do
  • The vital importance of systemizing your business
  • How to create a “franchise-able” business
  • Why you should start with the end in mind
  • How to use diversified methods in marketing
  • What exactly high equity mailers are
  • How they finance their deals
  • The worst deal Sam’s ever done
  • And SO much more!

Links from the Show

Books Mentioned in this Show

Tweetable Topics:

  • “People call us because they have a problem that they need to be solved.” (Tweet This!)
  • “Anyone who joins our company always have to fill out a goal sheet as well.” (Tweet This!)
  • “One of the joys of growing a business is trying stuff and seeing if it works.” (Tweet This!)

Connect with Sam

Sam’s Camping Photos

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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. Pat Ayres


    You were asking for advice on your House with the bad window trim that is rotting out. You mentioned the homeowner is a friend & he makes molding and trim? Ask him to have a contractor, who buys molding and trim from him, to do the work, for credit for future molding or trim. Or ask that YOU get some credit on molding & trim.


  2. Adrian Smude

    Great podcast! I love the business model of finding a way to help each person that contacts you. This is what I’ve been trying to become! I also love the community sign idea, I’d love to hear an update on how this is working.

  3. Karen A.

    Your dedication to “helping customers” is admirable. As I listened to the podcast, I appreciated hearing repeated references to your company’s commitment to providing excellent customer service. In my opinion, providing customers with excellent customer service is key. Your success demonstrates that it is possible to thrive in the real estate investing arena while maintaining a firm commitment to helping others.

  4. Shane Rupe


    What a phenomenal podcast and business you have established! You are certainly mastering the scalability of your business which will only make your organization more successful. The information you have provided is great and very helpful. I really enjoyed this podcast, thank you!

  5. Meghan Reed

    Great podcast, Sam! I love that you’re passionate not only about scaling your business and making a profit but also about helping the homeowners.

    I’m also suddenly very curious about overlanding. It looks like a bit of a step up from the camping my hubby and I do with our pop-up. Thanks for sharing the awesome pics.

  6. Johnny Kang


    You mentioned you don’t send out yellow letters to high-equity list anymore, due to the competition. Can you share what list you do send these days? (probate, vacant, fire damaged, etc.; and also let me know where you get those leads from? I’ve been using List Source.
    I wholesale properties in NYC, and I’m looking to buy rental properties in smaller cities since I can get a better return on my money. I’ve also found sending yellow letters to high-equity is getting tough. (probably also has to do with the fact that this is a seller’s market as well.) Thanks.


  7. Patrick Roob

    Hey there Sam!

    Great job on this podcast! I absolutely loved your drive to build a business that you can work on, rather than need to work in. I am currently in the process of working to automate a few things myself, when it comes to areas like tenant HVAC or maintenance issues, by setting up google phone numbers which route to subcontractors with pre negotiated rates, what are your thoughts there?


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