Stuck in the beginning... Looking for advice. Here's my story

10 Replies

I'll try to keep this as short as possible! 

My name is Benjamin Shull and I'm in the Rockford, IL market. I'm in the analysis paralysis stage. I've listened to 95% of all podcasts, look up YouTube videos, etc.

My fiance's grandparents are in the real estate investing world. I've been talking to them a lot seeing how they began and go about finding deals. The only problem is they sold their business (her grandpa and dad) and buy houses for cash only. They don't use financing and don't like LLC or management companies. They have a lot of valid and good information but looking for people in my area with current knowledge and help me run numbers, analyze areas, network, etc.

I've been attending meetups in my area and reaching out to a few people in my area to have lunch and I recieved some great tips and knowledge. I really enjoy meeting new people and hearing their success and experience in real estate. 

I'll end this now with saying I'm looking to work with someone more hands on. I learn the best by doing; listening to podcasts and audiobooks are great but not the best way that I learn! I'm willing to work for free. I have a full time job getting off around 5pm typically and have free time after that and most weekends to help with anything. Errands, run comps, and were calls, etc. Willing to help with anything. Hope this doesn't break any rules on the forum but I don't want to sit on the sideline watching, I want to start making progress! 

SORRY for the long story but wanted to make as much info available to get the best advice. 

Thank You everyone for reading and any input!

Benjamin Shull

I think you should go find a deal. Analyze it and decide if it is good enough to move on if you get a lender figure in the worst case scenarios for what it will cost to get the loan and the loan interest rates then figure with the best case scenario. If it make great money with the best case and it makes no money at worse case then go look for another one.  When you find one that doesn't make you fearful then find out what is needed down and make an offer. If it is accepted then find your financing here with people who can help you or through your bank.  If you need creative financing or you wish advise there are always people here who will try to help you. 

Best wishes.

PS. Rome wasn't built in a day but someone had to start building or there would be no Rome. It is scary to start but in the end you already have people to connect to so JUMP.  

That's my current gameplan! I hope to have my first property by the end of the year if not sooner. I plan to start with a duplex, triplex,  or quadplex if the deal is good enough. Always open to anything else but that's where I plan to start. Thanks for your response! 

My first property was a complete and total disaster!  I'm SO glad I bought it!  :)  

Accept that you are going to make mistakes.  We all do.  I like to say that I learn a new mistake with each property I buy.  Each mistake hones my skills even more.  Each new property I buy has fewer problems and more profit.  But if I hadn't pulled the trigger on the first property, I wouldn't have bought the second, or the third, etc.

Pull the trigger!

@Benjamin Shull you have discovered BP. Welcome. Give value here and you’ll get more in return then you ever could dream of.

I would encourage you to not waste to much time on “finding the right mentor” or things like LLCs and stuff like that. Discuss ideas with your finances Dad and grandpa by all means, but assuming they’re older and sounds like they have a lot of cash from a business sale, super specific advice from them likely won’t apply to you.

That’s like asking someone who starting buying rentals in SF in 2008 what you should do for buying rentals in Rockford IL in 2018. Very very different. (I’m from that part of the country originally btw).

They can give you tidbits but I’ll be vastly different overall.

What I recommend is read a lot on BP, listen to podcasts and read books on this stuff. Then go househack or buy a residential rental with 20 percent down.

thank you for the advice. I'm not looking for a mentor per say more of someone who's doing it consistantly where I can tag along and help to increase my knowledge. 

As far as her grandpa and dad go I'm planning to have them help me with my down payment and then add value, and refi out. Then repeat process! 

Any advice welcome and appreciated. I'm trying to be more active on BP however I dont have a lot of expertise yet, but I have some time and drive!

@Benjamin Shull sounds like you've got a great start and are probably in a decent investing market, so what's holding you back? I'm guessing based on your picture you're fairly young and may not have a lot of savings. So let me suggest 3 things for you to do tomorrow.

1) Pull all of the 2-4 units on the market yourself or using an agent. Go look at all of them and analyze them all using the calculators on here. Pick the best one and house-hack it. You can likely get in for very little money down. Absolute best way to start.

2) Find any local REI meetups in your area and start attending them. They have them listed on here and on Just go with the intention to meet and talk to as many people in the room as you can. Find out what they're working on and if you can help them out in any way.

3) Pick a few neighborhoods in your area that are maybe a little rough but seem to be turning around with some new construction going on. Look for a property in the area that has uncut grass. Go knock on the door and ask the owner if they would consider selling. If no one comes to the door, look the property up on the county tax website and send them a letter.

Good luck!

Awesome advice. I currently have my own house and looking to rent out and buy new for a house hack,  or get private money to help with downpayment. 

I do not have a lot of cash on hand, I have a lot of schooling, and other debts I'm currently getting rid of. 

I attend 2 local meet ups and heading to one tonight that I was invited to, which is 1 1/2 hours away but I take this seriously and want to meet as many people as possible. 

Hi  Benjamin  The Rockford area for apartments has cooled off. Not to many good deals at this time . The good deals sell fast ,so if you see something your interested in analyze it using the calculators on bigger pockets and make a choice. A lot of investors out here so there is a lot of competition. Good luck.