Can anyone share how you make your first million in Real Estate?

27 Replies

Thanks in advance.

I've read that the goal is you first get 1m worth of Real Estate. After that your goal is 1m of equity in your Real Estate. 

The Millionaire Real Estate Investor by Gary Keller

If you mean, net worth of $1m, I would say slow and steady.  I supposedly hit $1m net on paper this year.  I still drive a beater dressed like a homeless construction painter fixing all my own stuff.   If you mean $1m /yr, that's tougher.  I have an uncle on my dad's side that inherited a couple thousand upscale apt units in Chicago.  He spends his time big game hunting.  The only thing I hunt for is the phantom leaks in ceilings under 2nd floor bathrooms.   

@Sonny Ngo  It's simple.  Start your direct mail campaign today.  Start mailing, close deals, reinvest.....

Most people starting out never start.

By knowing your market, making smart decisions, living below your means, and reinvesting the profits

I am still trying to make that first million. So when I reach there, I will let you know.

You really want the secret?

Learn real estate, learn financing, learn government restrictions and programs, operate legally and ethically, use your knowledge to be creative, contribute to your community with what you do, do what others can't or won't do, then work smart, but work harder. Do that and in time you'll be fine!    :) 

@Sonny Ngo  @Bill Gulley  

  take 2 million in cash

  invest in out of state ghetto properties that promise 30% returns.. hold for 2 years and you will have 1 million ...

@Drew Vukov  

  sometimes this site needs to lighten up... I could not resist that one..

when I lived in the Napa valley  that was the running joke how to make a million in the wine business. invest 2 million and you will soon have 1...

I don't believe in equity. The ''true'' equity is when you need to make a fast sale discounted by 40% then this is the ''true'' equity. I had a lot of equity before 2008 and have less now, but my cash flow is better.

The true wealth is not the equity, the true wealth is the future cash flow that you will be generating discounted at the desired rate of return.

To make 1m net per year, you will need to turn 100 properties per year, and make 20k on each, pay overhead and taxes and you will get 1m.

Or you can buy a distressed apartment building, fix it up, rent it out and refinance at CAP of 6% and pull the cash out. You will not need to pay taxes on refi and you will have your million.

Now, to get 1 million at refi, you will need to get a building which will produce 90k net per year. At 6% CAP the value of the building will be 1.5m.

The bank will refi the loan at 75% LTV and you will get $1,125,000 at closing minus closing cost. Now calculate for how much you need to buy the building and how much you need to spend to get a future value of the building at 1.5M. Next find this building.

By being in the business many years!  Taking my profits from flips and real estate sales and investing them into rentals.  

Originally posted by @Pavel Sakurets :

I don't believe in equity. The ''true'' equity is when you need to make a fast sale discounted by 40% then this is the ''true'' equity. I had a lot of equity before 2008 and have less now, but my cash flow is better.

The true wealth is not the equity, the true wealth is the future cash flow that you will be generating discounted at the desired rate of return.

To make 1m net per year, you will need to turn 100 properties per year, and make 20k on each, pay overhead and taxes and you will get 1m.

Or you can buy a distressed apartment building, fix it up, rent it out and refinance at CAP of 6% and pull the cash out. You will not need to pay taxes on refi and you will have your million.

Now, to get 1 million at refi, you will need to get a building which will produce 90k net per year. At 6% CAP the value of the building will be 1.5m.

The bank will refi the loan at 75% LTV and you will get $1,125,000 at closing minus closing cost. Now calculate for how much you need to buy the building and how much you need to spend to get a future value of the building at 1.5M. Next find this building.

 Thanks.  That's very informative.  I'll be on the lookout for apt buildings from now on so i don't miss an opportunity when it is presented to me.

Originally posted by @Mark Ferguson:

By being in the business many years!  Taking my profits from flips and real estate sales and investing them into rentals.  

 Thanks.  That's certainly a good strategy to become a millionaire.

Many times it is just a matter of being in the right place at the right time. When I was in my mid twenties I was wearing 3 hats. investor, broker, paycheck job from 3 to 11 in the morning but able to be out of the office most of the shift. 

I found a vacant little strip mall in foreclosure and figured we could buy it and double our money in one year. I was talking about it with several co-workers at breakfast and they wanted in. 5 co-workers would put up $25k each and I put up my expertise to handle the deal. so 6 equal shares. We got the property at auction for $110k and I went to work. About 4 months in one co- worker came to me and said his wife was on the war path and he wanted out so I bought him out. Slowly each of them requested out over the next few months and I bought them out. 

Well this deal just keep getting bigger and more complicated but the future reward kept getting bigger too. Long story short is when the dust settled after 15 months  I walked away with a check from escrow of $1.5 million. The fun part was inviting the original 5 partners and their wives out for a night on the town.  At the end of the evening they were asking what was I celebrating and I said that the deal they bailed out on was finally over, they snickered, suggested I must be glad and hoped I hadn't lost to much. I then I put a copy of the check on the table with the notation that each of the original investors would have been given a check for $ 250,000 had they had stayed. And at that  time $15k a year was a very very good job. 

Twenty later I put together another deal that fell into my lap when one of my sons had borrowed the car and returned it with an empty gas tank that I had filled it just the day before.  I ran out of gas at a spot where I needed to get to a phone to call the AAA. While walking I was forced to study the area and wham it hit me to option as many of the properties as I could and sell to a developer, the area was ready, so I did. I had driven that road several times over the previous year without giving the area much thought. You could be standing across the street from a million dollar pay day, you just have to see it. Or put something together that would be impossible to forecast at the time but discover the potential and go for it which was my case number one.

Brian P. Thank you very much for shearing that great story.

 

Originally posted by @Brian P. :

Many times it is just a matter of being in the right place at the right time. When I was in my mid twenties I was wearing 3 hats. investor, broker, paycheck job from 3 to 11 in the morning but able to be out of the office most of the shift. 

I found a vacant little strip mall in foreclosure and figured we could buy it and double our money in one year. I was talking about it with several co-workers at breakfast and they wanted in. 5 co-workers would put up $25k each and I put up my expertise to handle the deal. so 6 equal shares. We got the property at auction for $110k and I went to work. About 4 months in one co- worker came to me and said his wife was on the war path and he wanted out so I bought him out. Slowly each of them requested out over the next few months and I bought them out. 

Well this deal just keep getting bigger and more complicated but the future reward kept getting bigger too. Long story short is when the dust settled after 15 months  I walked away with a check from escrow of $1.5 million. The fun part was inviting the original 5 partners and their wives out for a night on the town.  At the end of the evening they were asking what was I celebrating and I said that the deal they bailed out on was finally over, they snickered, suggested I must be glad and hoped I hadn't lost to much. I then I put a copy of the check on the table with the notation that each of the original investors would have been given a check for $ 250,000 had they had stayed. And at that  time $15k a year was a very very good job. 

Twenty later I put together another deal that fell into my lap when one of my sons had borrowed the car and returned it with an empty gas tank that I had filled it just the day before.  I ran out of gas at a spot where I needed to get to a phone to call the AAA. While walking I was forced to study the area and wham it hit me to option as many of the properties as I could and sell to a developer, the area was ready, so I did. I had driven that road several times over the previous year without giving the area much thought. You could be standing across the street from a million dollar pay day, you just have to see it. Or put something together that would be impossible to forecast at the time but discover the potential and go for it which was my case number one.

 Wow!  My take away from this is that people should take a closer look at things or else they can miss out on a million dollar profit.  I really liked it when you say, "put something together that would be impossible to forecast at the time but discover the potential and go for it which was my case number one".  I think i can buy a piece of land and put something neat together for investors to see its potential.  That way i get to do the work to make the investors see the potential. I am not saying i don't believe in luck, but i prefer something that i can create and that i can control the destiny of it.  Thank you Brian for sharing the knowledge.  I became a little more wiser today.

@Sonny Ngo  

These are the things that have worked for my wife and I:

1) My wife and I have lived on lower of our two incomes since we both got got full time jobs. My wife has been employed since Aug 2008. I graduated and started working full time Sept 2005 and left my job in Mar 2011 to do real estate full time.

2) We have been saving and investing the higher income into real estate (primarily) with some 401k in mutual funds.

3) We keep reinvesting the profit from our real estate income back into more real estate.

4) We have a very simple lifestyle. We don't live in the most expensive house we can afford. We don't drive the most expensive car we can afford.

@Jay Hinrichs  $2 mil investment in ghetto or wine would look fantastic compared to buying Bitcoins at peak of market in Nov 2013..I have financials to prove..lol

@Sonny Ngo  What others have not made clear is there are two primary aspects to making money in real estate:

1) Investing 

2) Real estate-related business.

I made my money by working in the industry as well as investing. 

Get clear about what investing is and what it isn't. Flipping is not investing; it's speculating. Wholesaling is not flipping, it's positiining yourself as a contractual intermediary. Real wholesalers have the capacity to close if they chose to. Bird-dogging is merely lead generation for a fee or piece of a deal, however it can be an excellent way to learn the business if you stay clear of activities requiring a license in your state.

Step one: Learn the foundamentals of real estate

Step two: Learn state laws, especially as they relate to real estate licensing, lending and foreclosure.

Step three: Study your market(s), especially residential 

Step four: Become a prodigious marketer. Probably the most critical step where most people fail and one that people fail to invest the most effort (and budget).

Step five: Study sales skills. Whether nose-to-nose or over the phone, you'll need to become a good negotiator and closer.

Step six: Invest YOUR share of deals (equity) to leverage

Step seven: Learn better strategies. Like options, seller financing and use of OPM

Step eight: Work to develop better systems to pursue, attract, document, control, risk management (to control loss).

Step nine: Take out or isolate profits. Since you can't eat equity, you need to find a way to access current profits and protect future profits.

Step ten: Re-Invest a significant portion of your profits into education and marketing. They are not the same. Education will help you discover new techniques for profits. Marketing will be the foundation of your success (or failure) as DEALFLOW is king. 

"If you ain't got no flow, you won't make no dough"

Everybody, this is the POST OF THE DAY!!!

IMHO the best post for all, especially for NEWBIES!


I own this book

http://www.shop.reidepot.com/Wittenmyer/opportunit...

40 different business plans for someone that want to work in a real estate oriented business.

Here are some ideas...

  • Apartment Preparation
  • Flipping Houses Fast
  • Mobile Homes
  • Rooming House Money Machine
  • Cell Tower Land Lease
  • Title Examiner
  • Real Estate Publishing
  • Real Estate Sales
  • Note Brokerage
  • Master Leasing
  • Parking Lots
  • Garage Storage Units
  • Property Management
  • Wholesaling Property
  • Lease Options
  • Eviction Service
  • Discount Note Investing
  • Marketing Consulting
  • Land Deals
  • Maintenance Services
  • Creating Notes/Income Streams
  • Mortgage Broker
  • Judgment Recovery
  • And many more...

This book is filled with street-smart tips, strategies and resources for starting, operating and marketing different real estate related businesses. I'd highly recommend that every real estate investor have his new guide so that you'll know several ways to generate income from real estate.

No commission or affiliation.



Originally posted by @Rick H. :

@Sonny Ngo  What others have not made clear is there are two primary aspects to making money in real estate:

1) Investing 

2) Real estate-related business.

I made my money by working in the industry as well as investing. 

Get clear about what investing is and what it isn't. Flipping is not investing; it's speculating. Wholesaling is not flipping, it's positiining yourself as a contractual intermediary. Real wholesalers have the capacity to close if they chose to. Bird-dogging is merely lead generation for a fee or piece of a deal, however it can be an excellent way to learn the business if you stay clear of activities requiring a license in your state.

Step one: Learn the foundamentals of real estate

Step two: Learn state laws, especially as they relate to real estate licensing, lending and foreclosure.

Step three: Study your market(s), especially residential 

Step four: Become a prodigious marketer. Probably the most critical step where most people fail and one that people fail to invest the most effort (and budget).

Step five: Study sales skills. Whether nose-to-nose or over the phone, you'll need to become a good negotiator and closer.

Step six: Invest YOUR share of deals (equity) to leverage

Step seven: Learn better strategies. Like options, seller financing and use of OPM

Step eight: Work to develop better systems to pursue, attract, document, control, risk management (to control loss).

Step nine: Take out or isolate profits. Since you can't eat equity, you need to find a way to access current profits and protect future profits.

Step ten: Re-Invest a significant portion of your profits into education and marketing. They are not the same. Education will help you discover new techniques for profits. Marketing will be the foundation of your success (or failure) as DEALFLOW is king. 

"If you ain't got no flow, you won't make no dough"

I am sure I am in the minority here, but it isn't a goal of mine. 

In real estate and business in general where you sale product to the market, you create your $$$$$$'s from value.

Value creation is wealth.  In real estate you make money from cash flow but big cash is from adding value, creating equity, selling the equity or pulling out the equity through lenders.

Frank

@Brian P.   The next time you have a crazy idea and are looking for investors, you can have my 25k :P

Free eBook from BiggerPockets!

Ultimate Beginner's Guide Book Cover

Join BiggerPockets and get The Ultimate Beginner's Guide to Real Estate Investing for FREE - read by more than 100,000 people - AND get exclusive real estate investing tips, tricks and techniques delivered straight to your inbox twice weekly!

  • Actionable advice for getting started,
  • Discover the 10 Most Lucrative Real Estate Niches,
  • Learn how to get started with or without money,
  • Explore Real-Life Strategies for Building Wealth,
  • And a LOT more.

Lock We hate spam just as much as you

Join the Largest Real Estate Investing Community

Basic membership is free, forever.

By signing up, you indicate that you agree to the BiggerPockets Terms & Conditions.