ATTENTION! All investors who invested in RE for the last 10 yrs.

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Hey BP family, I've been M.I.A. for several months from BP, in order to focus my attention on building up more capital to hopefully expand my investment options and opportunities. I finally accepted the reality that to increase my chances of having a highly probable real estate investment business I need capital, the more the better (at least from my experiences). I have tried and tried all the short cuts, some have worked well for me in the past but ultimately they all have failed. Now, I think im on the right path and im proud to say my investment fund is finally reaching my goal. My fiancè and I have decided Indianapolis, would be perfect to start our investment journey and look forward to the adventure. Now, enough about me lets get to the real reason im posting. The Question: This question goes to all the RE investors who have consistently invested in real estate for a minimum of 5 to 10 years, especially those whose real estate business survived the last recession. This is a multi-part question. Question: If you could start over with a clean slate, with all your current knowledge from all your wins and losses in real estate investing: A. What steps would you take first before searching, acquiring, or buying your first Real Estate property? ~If books are apart of your answer please list the name of the book(s). B. How much personal capital would you want saved to get started with investing in Real Estate and why? C. With our current economy, what strategy(ies) would you start with to advance your RE business in the CORRECT way to capitalize on the best returns in the least amount of time? What would this strategy be and why would it benefit in our current economy over others? D. What people would you absolutely have to hire for your dream team starting out in Real Estate and where would you seek out the most qualified people? (ie: RE attorney, Property manager) Anything else you would like to add that is relevant to the subject, by all means feel free to do so! Thanks, and I look forward to reading some of your answers!

For your first deal, I would reconsider your home town of Houston. I currently live in Lubbock and own 4 SFR's - 2 in town and 2 long distance. The long distance ones aren't bad now, because of one thing - I have an incredible property manager, which I would recommend using a property manager regardless of where you buy for your first deal. I went on my own for my first 2 houses and lost A LOT of money by making stupid mistakes (trying to save a buck). Work in property management fees into your analysis and don't think twice about it - be aggressive and plan on paying a fee of 1 months rent + 10% of the monthly rental charge. If it's less, great!

I don't necessarily have a problem with long-distance purchasing, but I personally wouldn't be comfortable with that being my first deal, especially if you live in Texas.  Regardless of where you buy, first find your property manager and realtor who is used to dealing with investment properties - the realtor can usually recommend a good property manager.  

I am definitely NOT a guru, but I love having consistent repeatable base hits. Most hall-of-fame baseball players didn't get there by belting home runs every time they went to bat. Consistent base hits generating a few hundred per month start to add up fast. I am really wanting to do the BRRRR strategy, but I'm building up my cash position so I can do my first one soon. I have a few friends using the strategy and they LOVE it!

Bottom line is that it depends on what you want as an investor AND what you significant other wants.  My wife is on-board as long as, as she says, "if it's a place I would live if the sh*t hits the fan, then okay".  That's her criteria and if that is what it takes for her to bless the deal, so be it!  That also affords a higher quality house and higher quality tenant.