5 All-Too-Common Excuses That Keep Investors From Succeeding

by | BiggerPockets.com

There is absolutely no doubt that excuses swarm our daily lives. Trust me, I am extremely well versed in the fact that success does not come without hard work and long hours. After all, who would not jump on the success bandwagon if it were a free ride?

Success requires some serious dedication, motivation, and commitment because there is absolutely no easy way to get there (sorry to crush your hopes). This thing called success is a long term goal, not a short term gain. So what kind of excuses do many investors fall prey to and how do you overcome them? Read on.

5 All-Too-Common Excuses Holding You Back From Real Estate Success

“I am not the right age.”

It simply does not matter what your age is; after all, age is just a number. Young people make it big, and more mature people find success as well. Age does not limit your abilities — there is no correlation whatsoever. So what are you waiting for? Time is precious, so do not hesitate anymore. Start immediately!


“I can make it work — despite the numbers.”

There is no doubt that you want to accomplish great things. However, keep in mind that accomplishing them cannot be forced. For example, if there is a deal that is obviously not going to go anywhere, do not give yourself an excuse to give into a bad deal by manipulating the numbers to benefit you.

After all, if the numbers originally are not in your favor and the deal will only bring in negative cash flow, then you should avoid the deal like the plague. Sure, it is great to be determined and driven, but having a stubborn mindset can be just as harmful as it is beneficial to you.

Related: 6 Ridiculous Excuses That Are Holding You Back From Real Estate Success

“I’m waiting for the right time.”

It is so common for real estate investors to wait around sitting on the sidelines and blame it on the age old excuse: “I am just waiting for the right time.” Unfortunately, waiting for the “right time” will most likely cost you a great deal, and before you know it, all that you have is a whole lot of losses in opportunity. Instead, what you should do is to remain active and keep a keen eye out for deals. They often go as fast as they come, so if you just stay in the background and simply wait without doing anything, it is unlikely you will be able to catch it before it flies off.

“I am not good enough.”

I am sure that many of us have flipped through a Forbes or Times magazine or even simply read some inspirational articles on Business Insider or Inc. about ultra successful people in the industry. We think the world of them and believe that it is impossible to be like them.

However, the truth is, the majority of those people actually started out with absolutely nothing, and everything that they have achieved was completely due to their own actions. Here is food for thought the next time you find yourself giving this excuse: “We are all self-made, but only the successful will admit it.”


Related: Confessions of a Hesitant Investor: How I Let Go of Excuses, Took a Chance & Started Buying Property

“Success (or money) will not bring me happiness.”

This is the ultimate excuse for anyone who has given up on their dream of achieving wealth. Anyone who does not have the cash would not have the necessary experience to tell you whether or not having money will or won’t make you happy. It is a psychological reflex that if you cannot have what you really wanted, you become defensive and try convincing yourself that you never really wanted it in the first place. While you may find that money in and of itself does not bring happiness, it certainly has the ability to provide freedom from stress, a 9 to 5 job that makes you miserable, and more.

Overall, what I hope you take away from this is the importance of saying no to excuses as an investor. These terrible things have the horrible power to consume your life and take control over what path you will take. As a real estate investor, one of the main perks is being your own boss, so do not fall prey to being the employee of Mr. Excuse and be your own person. Stay true to your dedication, motivation, and determination in order to find long term success in your field.

What common excuses have YOU heard in the real estate world?

Leave your comments below!

About Author

Sterling White

With just under a decade of experience in the real estate industry, Sterling currently manages over $10MM in capital, which is deployed across a $26MM real estate portfolio made up of multifamily apartments and single-family homes. Through the company he co-founded, Holdfolio, he owns just under 400 units. Sterling was featured on the BiggerPockets Podcast and has been contributing content to BiggerPockets since 2014, with over 200 posts on topics ranging from single-family investing and apartment investing to wholesaling and scaling a business.


  1. joe moore

    Hanging around with people who are negative nellies or peole too caught up in with keeping up with the Joneses can keep one from getting started down the road to becoming a successful real estate investor. Of course if the Joneses are successful real estate investors and they get to know them better, if might prove a good thing to keep up with them. In short, choose your associates carefully.

  2. Donald Cooley

    How about not having the money? That’s what I told myself when I was contemplating following this path. We had short sale our previous home and can’t qualify for a mortgage for another 4 months. But, researching, and listening to BP podcasts, and reading forums I discovered there are many ways to get started. Our first deal we put 8k down and seller financed it. It currently cash flows 300 per month after expenses. We are in the process of getting our second deal moving with a line of credit and seller financing again. Anything is possible if you say how can I do it instead of there’s no way to do it!
    Great article Sterling!

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