Real Estate Investing Basics

The 4 Most Common Roadblocks to Investing in Real Estate

Expertise: Real Estate Investing Basics, Personal Development, Landlording & Rental Properties, Real Estate News & Commentary, Business Management, Flipping Houses, Real Estate Deal Analysis & Advice, Personal Finance, Real Estate Marketing
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Let’s talk about the most common roadblocks when it comes to investing in real estate.

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Throughout my investment journey, I’ve always hit one of these roadblocks—and then I’ve hit it again and again. It’s just been a never-ending cycle. To be honest with you, to this day, I still don’t feel that I’ve hit that snowball effect where everything is just running smoothly. So, I’m not necessarily going to go into the solutions of all of these roadblocks. I’m just going to share some of them with you.

This blog is more suited for some of the inexperienced investors who are looking to get started in real estate—or even the investors who have started and bought a few properties, and they’re at the beginning of their journey. Ultimately, there are always going to be things that are going to set you back and make you adjust or change direction. But as long as you keep pushing forward, you will eventually get bigger and better, and you will succeed.

So, don’t let these roadblocks bring you down, because there is no such thing as giving up. You have to keep going and moving forward. 

Common Roadblocks to Investing in Real Estate

1. Needing Money

Look, the first one that I came across when I first got started in my investment journey is I had a deal but I didn’t have the money. I was very good at finding a lot of properties and negotiating hard, but I had limited amounts of capital. Therefore, I couldn’t buy the properties. And being the non-believer I am when it comes to leverage, I missed out on a lot of opportunities.

But rightly so. I didn’t want to use leverage I wanted to use my money. That was my belief and my stance. 

2. Not Finding Deals

Then, later on, I flipped a few properties and made a bit of money. I was busy project managing. I was working with investors. And all of a sudden, I have all this money and no deals. I kind of slowed down all my acquisition efforts, yellow letter campaigns, prospecting on Facebook, and looking at the MLS and auction websites.

Once again, as an entrepreneur and business owner, you’re wearing so many hats and there are so many fires, you’re going from one fire to the other. 

3. Not Having Buyers

Another roadblock I have stumbled across many times, especially in the turnkey industry (because I own a turnkey company), is we would have a renovated and tenanted property and no buyers. So, that was another big problem, because now you’re sitting on inventory. And if you sit on inventory for too long, everything is at a standstill.

In a turnkey business, it all starts with the sale. You sell a property, you get revenue. Then, the people can get paid to do the property management, because we have in-house property management, and it funnels downward. Sales, guys, are the livelihood to every single business. Don’t forget that.

Related: 6 Powerful Words That Entirely Changed My Outlook on Success

It doesn’t matter how many mistakes you make in other departments. If you are selling and selling well, you can absorb those losses. You need the sales so you can cover whatever you need to cover, make good on your promise to investors, and fix the problems that are going on within your business. 

I was once told to drive revenue and keep costs at an absolute minimum. That’s the most important thing for a business when it’s in its infancy stage. No thousand-dollar office desks, OK? 


4. Missing the Operations

To repeat everything, I had the deals and no money, then I had the money and didn’t have the deals, and then I had the inventory and didn’t have any buyers. Where I find myself now is I have the money, I’ve got the deals, I’ve got the buyers. I’ve got the finished product (as in the inventory), but I’m missing the operations.

So, that’s another key element to your success is to make sure that you have the operations in check. That you have systems, processes, manuals ready and in place. If you’re looking at building a business, all of these things have to be in order. The people that you are employing need to know what they need to do, because if they don’t know what they’re doing, it can end up being an absolute disaster. 

Of course, we’re actually talking about growing a business here, but I think it’ll be the same case for a lot of you investors out there. Even if you’re looking to fix and flip three to five properties every year, that still takes an operation.

And I do believe that you will still need some sort of process in place for doing certain things. It could be acquisitions or sending out yellow letters. Do you really want to be doing all the work or would you rather outsource that? I know a lot of wholesalers who send a lot of yellow letter campaigns with a lot of virtual assistants. That systemized that process for them.

Related: The Ultimate Guide to Adding Systems & Outsourcing to Work Less in Real Estate

Yes, even something like acquisitions can be systemized, so you don’t have to do the work yourself. That can also apply to project management, rehabs, keeping your contractors accountable, etc. Keep in mind, all of these things need to have checks and balances, too. 

Ultimately, that’s kind of the icing on the cake in a negative way—the operational side of things. I think that’s the hardest thing to master and takes the longest to master. But there are stages in your investment cycle where you will hit any one of these points multiple times. Sometimes to this day, we still hit a certain one.

I’ll give you an example, we just had a frenzy of investors over the last few weeks and sold out of every property. Now, we’re kind of lacking inventory again. Therefore, we need to acquire more properties to meet the demand.

Look, it’s just the cycle of real estate. 

I am personally looking forward to hitting the snowball effect, as I like to call it. This is where it’s just rolling down that hill and getting bigger and bigger, because if you aren’t growing you are dying. Movement is life; stillness is death.

What are some roadblocks that you have come across in your real estate endeavors? What are some roadblocks you’re afraid you may encounter?

Share in the comment section below.

Engelo Rumora, a.k.a."the Real Estate Dingo," quit school at the age of 14 and played professional soccer at the age of 18. From there, he began to invest in real estate. He now owns real estate al...
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    Wenda Kennedy JD from Nikiski, Alaska
    Replied 10 months ago
    I hate to tell you this -- I started my RE career in 1976 and I've never hit that "snowball" effect. I'm still looking for it. People talk to me about 4 hour work weeks and being gone for months or years without their world falling apart. I've never found that place. Yes, I retired from my real estate career to be a full-time RE investor. But, I'm still working hard and making things happen every day.
    Engelo Rumora Specialist from Toledo, OH
    Replied 10 months ago
    Thanks Wenda, I don't believe in the 4hr work week when it comes to scaling a business. You can have it "steady" while working 4hrs but not growing IMO. It would take some really good people and incentives to grow it without the founders full presence. Keep the dream alive and much success
    Patsy Searcy
    Replied 10 months ago
    I am trying to get started. I have my first property in site and am working on the money problem. I am ready to forge ahead and get started. I know it's now or never. If I don't jump in and get my feet wet, I might never take the plunge. I am as ready as I will ever be for my first time. Thank you for articles like this one. They are helping me to keep my eye on the goal and pay attention to the details of every aspect so I hopefully don't get burned.