Personal Development

The Least Discussed Reason Wannabe Investors Don’t Take Action (& How to Overcome It!)

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I’ve never fully understood the obsession with figuring out why other people fail to take action when it comes to real estate investing.

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It seems like a lot of people genuinely look for justification not to start. 

“If Jimmy didn’t start because he had no money, and I have no money, then I’m justified in not starting yet.”

This is entirely the wrong mentality! Why not focus your energy on figuring out why successful people DID take action?

Regardless, I’m going to tell you the real reason some who are interested in investing never take action. It’s something that isn’t discussed very often.

But first, here are some of the most stereotypical excuses.

Why Some Wannabes Never Take Action: The Typical Responses

Don’t get me wrong. All of these excuses are pretty understandable—yet unfortunate.

Let’s briefly discuss each.


Fear is a beast. And taking the plunge into real estate isn’t easy. 

That being said, everybody experienced the feeling of fear when they bought their first property. It may not have been crippling, but it was there. Anyone who tells you they weren’t at least a little scared is probably not being completely honest with you.

This is why it’s important to make decisions based on numbers and bounce the analysis off experienced investors. Don’t bring your emotions into the deal at all.

Emotions are dangerous—leave them out of investing.

Nervous businessman peeking over desk

Lack of Experience

This excuse drives me nuts!

NOBODY had experience before they took action—you gain experience BY taking action!

If this is your excuse, either quit or work under somebody for free to gain the experience you so crave.

This is a silly excuse to me. Just take action!

Related: A Beginner’s Guide to Finding a Real Estate Mentor

No Money

This is an understandable excuse and probably the most common.

I have been investing since 2015. To date, I have never paid more than 6 percent down on a real estate transaction.

Leverage is wonderful. It is risky but wonderful. I house hacked my first duplex for less money than most of my cars have cost. 

Theoretically, you could sell your car and buy a house. 

You can overcome the “no money” issue by utilizing FHA loans, VA loans (if qualified), seller financing, purchasing subject to the existing mortgage, partnering, other people’s money, hard money lenders, etc.

My point is this: While having no money is scary, if you have knowledge and time, you can invest in real estate!

male showing empty pockets implying moneyless

Not Enough Time


Set your priorities, and either make REI a priority or find someone with time and provide money/knowledge!

This is a cop-out excuse. 

I purchased a property while spending six weeks on a remote island and only having access to the internet through my cell phone a couple of times. 

Figure it out.

Why Some Wannabes Never Take Action: The Least Discussed Reason

We have ruled out the most common excuses. And yes, they are just excuses.

Now let’s talk about the least discussed reason some wannabes fail to take action (and how to avoid it).

You’re LAZY!

That’s it.

The number one reason some people fail to take action is the amount of work required.

This excuse is behind the time, fear, and experience excuses. You know it’s going to take a lot of time and energy to make this happen. You’re afraid because it takes a lot of work, and you don’t fully understand what to expect. You don’t have experience because you haven’t done it yet.

In the military, there is a common phrase we use in combat: “Complacency kills.” 

Although the meaning is a little different when applied to real estate, the message is the same. It’s not the one morning you sleep in or the one day you get nothing done that hurts you. It’s not the hassle you avoided today or the excuse you used today in order to procrastinate.

However, if you ALWAYS avoid hassle, procrastinate, and sleep in, you will never succeed.

Sloth is one of the seven deadly sins. If you want to succeed as a real estate investor, or in life in general, you need to kill the urge to be complacent—before it kills you!

Related: Getting Started In Any New Real Estate Business

Start Investing NOW: Here’s How


The first step to conquering the excuse of laziness is to sit down and set goals. 

You need to long-, medium-, and short-term goals. These goals should be similar to a five-year plan, yearly goals, monthly goals, and weekly goals. 

Think of the cartoons you watched as a kid where a rider would tie a carrot to the end of a long pole and dangle it in front of a stubborn horse/mule in order to motivate them to move forward.

Goals are the carrot you dangle in front of yourself.

No matter how driven you are (or aren’t), there will be days when you lack the motivation to do any work. At these times, it is important to have a carrot (goals) to chase in order to stay on track!

Pensive young entrepreneur looking at laptop screen and drinking coffee at table in cafe


Some of you may have noticed I didn’t say you need daily goals. You may have even been bothered by this and decided to tune out (haha). 

The reason I didn’t mention daily goals is that, while they serve a purpose, I prefer to think in terms of the “most important next step.” This is sometimes called M.I.N.S.

M.I.N.S. should be determined every night before you go to sleep. This will ensure you knock out the most important next step toward your weekly goal(s) first thing the next morning.

If you can knock out the most important next step toward your goal every morning, it will snowball into accomplishing your goals quickly!

The key is determining what this step is the night prior, and then doing it first thing the next morning!


Most of the actions you take to achieve your goals will not be fun or easy.

It’s easy to find “busy work” to use as a distraction. This busy work is more fun and often easier than accomplishing the most important next step would be.

Since we are all human (I think), it’s safe to assume that you will have days, weeks, months, or even years when you fail to do the difficult task(s) that need to get done.

This is human nature and a hard habit to break. And this is why accountability is crucial to your success as an investor. 

You need to find some people who are on the same path as you, as well as a few who are farther down that path, and get together to grow and hold each other accountable!

A common way to do this is through mastermind groups. A mastermind group is comprised of people who have lofty goals for life and are determined to achieve these goals. They meet regularly, whether in person or on conference calls, and talk through their struggles, successes, and so on in order to help each other progress.

These mastermind groups are great for helping you grow and holding you accountable to achieve more!

Mans Hand Reaching For Red Ladder Leading To A Blue Sky


Real estate investing isn’t easy at first (most things aren’t).

Imagine REI as a large flywheel, and every step you take gets it to move just a little bit faster. As the flywheel speeds up, it takes less and less effort to keep it moving.

This is the power of systems!

Every time you complete a task, remember how you did it. If you complete that task a second time, create a system for streamlining the process. The simpler you can make tasks in real estate, the easier it becomes to buy homes!

For example, one of my favorite systems to date is my Google Drive folder for lenders. Every time I have applied for a loan, I needed to provide the previous two years’ tax returns, W-2s, bank statements, photo IDs, verifiable income, etc.

I created a folder titled “Lender Documents” in Google Drive that has all of this information in it, separated by tax year.

Now, when I apply for a loan, I simply email a link to this folder to my lender and wait for them to tell me if they need any more documentation (which is minimal, if any)!

Talk about streamlining the lending process.

Don’t forget to create systems as you journey down the path of real estate investing. It will make your life so much easier!

Use Laziness to Your Advantage

Lazy people will often find the easiest way to accomplish a task. Use this mentality to succeed as a real estate investor—without losing all of your hair.

Real estate investing isn’t easy, but it is extremely rewarding.

Embrace your laziness, and use the safeguards above to continually attack your goals.

Take the time to put in a lot of work now. You will be happy that you did!

Have you stutter-stepped instead of starting? What’s holding you back? How will you overcome it?

Leave a comment below!


David Pere has been active in the U.S. Marine Corps since 2008. He got his start as a real estate investor in 2015 and since then has bought and sold over 50 rental units, partnered on multiple fix...
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    Elsie S.
    Replied 7 months ago
    This is just what i needed to hear, thank you
    John Ulrick Rental Property Investor from Wahiawa, HI
    Replied 7 months ago
    Thanks David. I love the M.I.N.S. and the Lender Docs Folder idea. So easy, but I’ve never thought of that.
    Jim Froehlich Investor from Wolfeboro, New Hampshire
    Replied 7 months ago
    Great article David! You are value-adding content machine!
    Frank Longo Investor from Uncasville, Connecticut
    Replied 7 months ago
    Well said.
    Wave Taylor from Baltimore, MD
    Replied 7 months ago
    Great stuff. I see a lot of these things in me. I really need to stop being afraid and jump in and make it happen.
    Scott Travis
    Replied 7 months ago
    I love advice that isn’t sugar-coated. Might be a bitter pill, but those are the ones that do the most good. I understand how the game is played from poking around bigger pockets for a couple months. I’m dying to pull the trigger on a first deal. The remaining roadblock is no cash reserves for when Murphy inevitably shows up, in the form of a blown water heater, fridge, croaked septic system, or prolonged vacancy. Laziness isn’t an issue, but fear of getting caught with my financial pants down sure is. Thoughts?
    David Pere Rental Property Investor from Oceanside, CA
    Replied 6 months ago
    Scott, I understand this fear for sure. Do you have a 401k? Banks count 401k money as reserves, and it could serve as cash reserves in a worst-case scenario. Sure, this isn’t ideal, but if you’re confident in the deal this could work well. You could also ask the seller for a credit of say $5,000/10,000 at closing, depending on the situation with the property this could work to your advantage. Maybe you have some items around the house you could sell in order to build a cash reserve?
    Scott Travis
    Replied 6 months ago
    First, thank you for your service and thank you for the reply. I don’t have a 401k, but I may have 5-10k equity I can pull out of my house. I will know exactly once the refi goes through. I have a few things I have sold and a few more that will be sold once I get them working and running correctly. They arent worth much, might end up with another 3-5k out of that. I have a side hustle doing handyman work for a small chain of retail stores as well as a full time trucking job. I am also involved with helping my wife with her start-up business which is too new to provide a paycheck just yet so we are living on what I can scratch together. The way I see it with limited time and capital, I have one shot at this so I can’t afford a mistake. My first choice would be a BRRRR or a straight flip. Wholesaling isn’t out of the question, but I don’t see much potential in the local market I can operate in. Seems like I need to partner up if this is going to happen, but so far I haven’t found anyone willing to take the risk on a newbie with no track record. I like the angle of asking for a credit, I hadn’t thought of that. Am I missing something else, or is it time to say damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead? That seems to be the overarching theme to a lot of what I am reading on BP, but on the other hand I’ve lost my arse a couple times already by not looking where I leaped. I really appreciate your input.
    David Pere Rental Property Investor from Oceanside, CA
    Replied 6 months ago
    I don’t know if I would say damn the torpedos hahaha. Taking action is absolutely necessary, but if you don’t have cash reserves you need to be at least a little cautious. Now, you could look for seller-financed deals in order to avoid paying a large amount down on a rental, or partner with some other investors. Ultimately, if you’re working hard to save capital I would focus on learning as much as humanly possible and networking with local investors. Offer your time to help them…deals require time, knowledge, and capital…if you don’t have capital, the other two pieces can suffice while somebody else brings the capital.