How BiggerPockets helped us Flip/wholesale 27 houses in 12 months

36 Replies

On October of 2011 I found Bigger Pockets and I can honestly say it was and will continue to be a major driver for the success of our business. Back then I had been a homeowner for 5 months (a lovely ex crack den) and upon signing of the contract had an AH HA! moment when I realized how much my net worth had increased by locating a distressed property in a nice area. I figured I could do it again so I started researching and reading on Bigger Pockets only to realize I how uninformed I was and how I really just got lucky with that first deal…

So between October of 2011 and March of 2012 I read every book even remotely connected to real estate and was on Bigger Pockets daily searching the new word or strategy that I knew nothing about. Right about March I started sharing my crazy plans of house flipping with my family and after some discussion my father and I decided to go into business together.

July hit and the LLC was alive! By the end of July we were marketing in newspapers and had a plan for 1000 letters a month. (shout out to @Quarles for the hand holding, and @Jerry Puckett for the advice) Once we started marketing it got really hard and a bit disappointing as we were both learning a new business and the money just wasn't flowing in like we hoped. Using BP and its members as a resource we tweaked and re-tweaked and then January hit and things exploded. We purchased 3 houses in January and are up to 27 so far.

BP has helped us find:
Partners
Active buyers
Active sellers
Great friends
Excellent networking opportunities

The people and the resources available at BP are top notch, and there are just no excuses anymore for not getting started. @Joshua Dorkin and his team have cultivated an awesome environment to network and exchange ideas.

In the next 12 months we will hire a few full time people to manage the acquisition in a few other Houston sub markets. The commercial arm of the business is alive and kicking and we are seeking out our first large acquisition with the private capital in place to get it done.

So thanks again BP and its members. The best way I know to give back is to continue posting and helping where I can.

@Sam Craven Always great to hear success stories like this! Congrats on your momentum and continued success! Don't forget to send me those wholesale leads every once in a while... (Joking, but serious.)

@Sam Craven - This is an awesome success story! Thank you so much for taking the time to share it with us. I believe that stories like these help to inspire other new investors to get out and make it happen!

Keep rocking it, and definitely be sure to continue to share your victories with us in the success story forum!

This is awesome @Sam Craven , really good to hear and appreciate you sharing this type of info. I know one thing that some tend to leave out and its also what I want to ask you to better help others when they are starting out.

It seems you had a period between when you started your journey and when yo landed your first deal. I know many see/hear the marketing of get started with no money and many try that approach.. But how did you budget between that time period and how did you approach the marketing plan to get started. Thanks in advance

@Sam Craven

Congratulations in your Journey.

I am just starting in Houston and looking forward to hear more about your success. It is an inspiration to move forward

I met somebody from senna homes in an apartment investing class a few weeks ago. He was very excited for the company Growth.

Take care

Sam: Congrats and thanks for the update! Without giving away any trade secrets or info you want to keep private, can you share your total marketing budget versus profits, perhaps as a ratio?

You say 27 wholesale or flips. Have you kept anything for your portfolio?

I love hearing success stories as I am just getting into the real estate market. I was wondering if you could share some of the sites or sources where you find these deals. I have been using drenx.com which serves as a great source. Let me know if you have any suggestions like this.

Julian

W Tomsin We started slow with direct mail and newspaper only. If you search my old started threads there will be one of a dejected me pleading for help as to why our marketing wasnt working. Ultimately the people of BP were able to help us out, get us to keep our head down and in January after ramping up our marketing things clicked into place.

@Hector Perez it was either me or my Dad that you met at an apartment class. Either way hope to run into you again.

@Account Closed our 6mo avg so far this year is 25x return per marketing dollar. That's calculated as net per deal and does not cover overhead. And we have not kept anything for our self. We are in the process of doubling our marketing budget to expand our internet presence and expand our direct mail. Long term goal is to build a company balance sheet to attract banks and give our private lenders confidence to do the larger deals with us. So the focus is on raising internal and external capital.

@Julian Lejade NONE of our deals have come from anything other than our own marketing. NO MLS deals, NO wholesale deals, one referral i will put under contract tomorrow. To get the good stuff you have to go to the source.

Originally posted by K. Marie Poe:
Sam: Congrats and thanks for the update! Without giving away any trade secrets or info you want to keep private, can you share your total marketing budget versus profits, perhaps as a ratio?

You say 27 wholesale or flips. Have you kept anything for your portfolio?

Thanks for the additional info. I do remember some of your posts from when you started marketing. Looking back with what you know now, would you say the issues in the beginning were not enough lead time (or patience). Or did you end up changing the volume and message substantially from when you first started?

Originally posted by David Jackson:
Joshua Dorkin Sam Craven Do I hear a podcast in the works???

Absolutely.

@Account Closed I would say it was a combination of things, our volume wasn't high enough, combined with being a bit impatient.

Our message stayed the same.

@Kirk R. The explosion was contributed to it being the start of the year but most importantly i think it was us finally getting all of our marketing together.

Now that the year has gone on, we are doing direct mail, newspaper, yard signs, and pay per click. We are in the process of revamping the website for SEO/content to hopefully drive more people to the website. Pay per click has done well for us.

I got started in a similar way in that my wife and I bought a house to live in. And buy luck or whatever, it was a foreclosure. And we fixed it up and got some equity, and I started reading and studying on the internet to learn how to make a living at this. I didn't get off to the flaming start that you did, but I'm loving it.

@Bryan L. , of our 27 deals in the last 12 months 24 have been in the last 6. So it was 6 solid months of questioning humanity and banging our head against the wall before all the advice we were given and all the hard work started to take shape. So stick with it and listen to the good advice.

I've been at this now for 10 years and doing well. Had a rough patch during the middle of the market collapse. And it was slow getting started for me. But going great now.

There's a book titled "48 Days To The Work You Love". For me, it was more like 48 months before I really had good success. You are lucky to have your Father to partner with. I had no support when I got going. Everyone was telling me to not do it. Still after 10 years I can't get my Father to even loan me money out of his retirement account.

This is a great story, and I am glad you gave your marketing some time to work, thats my biggest frustration right now being consistent and giving my marketing time to work. Its great to see you doing well and kicking *** !!!!

@Bryan L. Having you can trust pays dividends. The volume of rehabs and purchases we are doing right now would be overwhelming for just one of us.

Thanks again for the kind words, and if I can help in any way just reach out.

Thank's for sharing it certainly gives everyone the motivation to keep working until you get it right and good of you to give credit to Bigger Pockets for assisting in your success.

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