Buying and selling raw land for profit

4 Replies

Hello, and although a day early Happy 2018 to everyone!  A new member as of this morning.  I'm interested in starting a side gig flipping raw land - I know, a lot to learn before getting started.  I've poked around the internet and have come across RETipster's, The Land Academy's, and The Land Geek's websites.  I find this model of investing interesting but it is really viable?  Would love to get thoughts and opinions.  I've searched the communities on BiggerPockets and I don't see a lot of posts on this topic - and that one's that I have found seem a bit dated, a year to 2 years old.  Is land flipping still a viable strategy for 2018?  Also, and recommendations on which States and Counties are currently good markets to focus on?  Thanks in advance.

Hey @Adam Hensel - great question. It's still pretty viable in the markets where I'm working (and from the ongoing conversations I have with others, it's working pretty well in their markets too). I think it is important to pick the right kind of county though, because the effectiveness of your marketing can vary quite a bit depending on a number of factors that pertain to the areas where you're working (e.g. - population, property types, property values, proximity of the nearest big city, state laws, etc).

Hey @Seth Williams , thanks for the reply and input - good information.  The plan is to research things more and to get a good feel for which counties have the potential for profit.  Need to checkout your podcasts too. :)

I think land investing is like a lot of things. You're going to find a few people in each of those programs absolutely on fire. A few more that are carving out a decent living. And then the majority of the rest that are making some decent side income.

Much like flipping. You hear some of these BP podcasts where these flippers are just on fire making 7 figures a year. And then you hear of others making a pretty good living. But most of us are just hoping to pull off one or two flips a year maybe and are happy to get it.

But I don't think the land numbers are anywhere near the numbers you'd find in typical investing (flipping sfh's, etc).

There are some land guys making over 6 figures for sure. But they're far fewer of those then the ones that are making 6 figures at flipping houses based on what I've seen in the groups. 

I would suggest that land dealing is a way to make some decent side money for most people and thats about the extent of it.  If you can find the right niche, a decent living even.  But, as with anything, you might be that one in a thousand that just gets it and can boom.   But your odds are far greater that it'll just end up being a decent side gig. 

btw: I've tried a couple of the programs. One I didn't think was useful at all for me at least it wasn't when I bought it. The other was good enough to at least get me started.  My results - I flipped a couple of lots at a pretty good return. But I've been sitting on 4 more parcels for a long time and am just trying to get my money back at this point. And this was after paying for a couple of consulting calls to make sure I was on the right path with the land I bought and my pricing.   

Thanks for sharing your thoughts @Mike H. I hear you - some people are fortunate enough to pick the right market on their first attempt AND nail every other step along the way (i.e. - they work with a good, well-sorted list, a solid direct mail piece, they follow up with prospects well, make appropriate offers, pursue the right properties, and then market them in all the right places with the right information, etc).

There's a lot that needs to be done right, and it's pretty unusual for a beginner to do it all perfectly on their first attempt. Usually there are at least a few things that need to be tweaked and improved on the second, third and fourth try... but the only way to figure out what isn't working is to start going through the process.

Most people need a pretty decent runway to get things figured out before they can really go crazy doing deals (that is, if they ever decide to ramp up their business to that point - like you said, many just treat it like a side gig, which is still a totally valid way to run the business).

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