Newbie from Decatur, GA

12 Replies

Hi everyone. My name is Zanaida Wakatama I am mother and wife in the earliest phase of real estate investing- studying, establishing relationships and looking to identify my niche. I have a background in Accounting and Education. My ultimate goal is to pass on a significant amount of real estate to each of my children through successful deals and developments. How did you get started? What advice can you share? Let's connect. Thank you in advance.

Best Regards, 


@Zanaida Wakatama

Welcome. Atlanta is in the top 10 US markets for student housing.

Locate and attend 3 different local REIA club meetings great place to meet people gather resources and info. Here you will meet wholesalers who provide deals and rehabbers (cash buyers). Find them through Google and

Two Great reads, I bought both J. Scott The Book on Flipping Houses, The Book on Estimating ReHab Costs

You might consider Niche or Specialized Housing like student housing. Rents can be 2-4 times more. Remember you don't have to own a property to control it.

Download BP’s newest book here some good due diligence in Chapter 10. Real Estate Rewind Starting over

Good Luck


Hi @Zanaida Wakatama  Fellow Decatur investor here.   Welcome to BP!

I started out land lording ... buying houses in Decatur and nearby.  I preferred deeply discounted properties so I found myself doing lots of rehab.  Eventually, I thought I'd parlay my rehab experience into a flip.  Big difference, but I survived and profited.  

Now, I continue to flip and buy-n-hold in a bigger territory and at multiple price points.  

A better way to start is to dig in here and look for some deals simultaneously.  

Best of luck!


Thank you for sharing your journey @Rick Baggenstoss I love the homes in the area and have seen some properties to research nearby. Are you aware of any meet ups in the area? I researched but didn't see any current. That may be an opportunity to create one myself. 

@Zanaida Wakatama There are some meet ups, but they are thru the REIA's mostly. I'm pretty active with GA REIA. There's a Dekalb subgroup and a variety of others.

@Azeez K.  coordinates a BP meeting every couple of months for Atlanta area members.

There are several other active Decatur investors such as @Anna Watkins and @Sheree H. who are local landlords who could teach you a thing or two.  

You need to do your homework and figure out a good fit for you first unless you already have your plans together.

Welcome to BP Nation.....Unfortunately I do not have much to share like others, but am learning a ton from this site.... You are in the right place and people here are friendly and always ready to help as you can see already.....:)

Resources section might be a great place to start; listen to the webiners/podcasts; download the free e-book for investors.......  I promise you there will be no dull moments for you.....

@Zanaida Wakatama

(thanks for the shoutout, @Rick Baggenstoss )  I'm not sure I have any idea what I'm doing, Zanaida, but I seem to be on a pretty good buy-and-hold landlording roll right now.  As rick said, I've got 3 rentals in unincorporated Dekalb inside-the-perimeter, and have learned a TON from Bigger Pockets in the last year.  All the "ultimate" guides (tenant screening, getting loans, and more) and the information in the forums has helped me strengthen my leases, find good tenants, and most recently,  I got a 5th rental (this one in my TN hometown) directly from a "distressed" owner I knew, using lots of information gathered from BP sources.

Advice?   If you're interested in landlording, decide up front whether you want cash NOW, or whether you are building for future income. Your intro sounds like you're in for the long haul, so I'd say don't stress overly on getting an awesome "deal" -- just make sure that you can rent for a few hundred dollars more than your costs, and save ALL the cash flow for the inevitable repairs, vacancies and upgrades.  The most important thing in this plan is having other people pay the mortgage, and the next is potential appreciation and/or rent increases.  When the mortgage is paid off, your children will inherit an asset to manage for income, or sell right away.  At least that's my plan anyway.  

Definitely attend a BP meetup -- all good folks there, and no sales pitches, just info sharing.  

Keep posting, asking and sharing.  You'll learn so much, make connections and also gain the confidence to jump on in!

@Anna Watkins thank you so much. Yes, I am planning for the long haul. My oldest is just 2 and the next due before year end. I'm hoping to learn as much as possible so that when they are of age I will have much to share. Thank you for the beneficial advice. 

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