Note Investing - Goal Setting

23 Replies

I used Bill Bartmann's 9-Step Goal Setting plan he wrote about in 'Secret's to Success.'  What is interesting is that the 9th step is 'Taking Action.'  This is where most folks drop off when looking to become note investors.  It got me thinking about all the folks that attend conferences, spend time on social media forums, read a ton of books, but sit idle when it comes to becoming an active note investor.  

I'm curious what folks on BP think about this topic?

Why even spend the time to go half way (I ask respectfully)?

Not buying is really a pretty easy way to get a nice return without the tenants, toilets or trash. I sell a lot of houses, but I tell my investors that have liquid cash to consider just buying a note from me, it is WAY less moving parts. Especially since they are performing first position notes with low LTV.

Anyhow, the question about why folks do not take action is a GREAT one! my believe is that it is one of a few things that could cause it. 

1. Lack of resources. 

2. Focus- In today's world, there are SOOO many distractions. "shiny objects"

3. Lack of belief.

4. People get interested in real estate then realize there is some work involved and life just gets in the way. It is way easier to get back on the path that you know so well and not cut through the brush and blaze a new trail, but the problem is that although it is easier to go back to what ya know, that path leads to the same unfulfilling results they have always received.

Just a few of my thoughts from the top of my head. 

 Just think of what this business would look like if EVERYONE that started in the business is in it and active!

Originally posted by :

Not buying is really a pretty easy way to get a nice return without the tenants, toilets or trash. I sell a lot of houses, but I tell my investors that have liquid cash to consider just buying a note from me, it is WAY less moving parts. Especially since they are performing first position notes with low LTV.

Anyhow, the question about why folks do not take action is a GREAT one! my believe is that it is one of a few things that could cause it. 

1. Lack of resources. 

2. Focus- In today's world, there are SOOO many distractions. "shiny objects"

3. Lack of belief.

4. People get interested in real estate then realize there is some work involved and life just gets in the way. It is way easier to get back on the path that you know so well and not cut through the brush and blaze a new trail, but the problem is that although it is easier to go back to what ya know, that path leads to the same unfulfilling results they have always received.

Just a few of my thoughts from the top of my head. 

 Just think of what this business would look like if EVERYONE that started in the business is in it and active!

Nice, great points.  White noise is everywhere and strips many people of reaching their full potential.  I also like your comment about everyone becoming an active business owner at the same time (what would that mean to folks like us?).  Real Estate and Notes are a lot of work whichever way you go....I do both and know first hand:)

Thanks so much for your thoughts!

Investing in any Project without taking action is in my opinion a waste of time. Taking action mitigates fear, and fear can prevent you from taking action. Your choice!

It was nice seeing you in person at DME @Martin Saenz ! It's interesting you brought this up as I met someone for the second time at DME who I had met a few months back who fits the profile of the "investor" you're talking about. He's been traveling all over and spending a good deal of money to take courses, go to conferences, etc but the overall sentiment I get from him I think is half of the answer to your question.

He, as well as those you describe, is basically on a quest for "The Perfect and Best Way" to invest. Many believe that there's a "best" way to invest and feel that until they find it they should stay on the sidelines. This is not exclusive to real estate. You can find the same in any industry or field where any proposal for change is met with a bureaucratic system to determine the absolute best way to do it. Ideally there's a balance between the notion of Right First Time and Minimum Viable Product that should be struck whereby one acquires enough knowledge to act and then uses action to adapt and evolve. I believe most tend to skew towards Right First Time to a fault.

The second reason ties into the first. There's a fear that if you jump into the deep end there's the possibility of drowning. People learn enough to know that there are dangers in investing and overinflate those dangers to the point of inaction. Even though someone could theoretically purchase a note for $30K and just let whatever happens happen as they work it out, there's an inherent safety in spending the same $30K to just purchase education to help navigate those waters. People tend to believe that the danger that they face in taking action is far worse than what they will likely encounter in reality.

Hi @Martin Saenz great seeing you at the events the past couple of weeks. I think one reason why people actually don't pull the trigger and take action is their fear of failure. What if everything they heard and learned actually doesn't work? Or if they somehow screw it up? I used to find myself in that boat before I got into real estate and notes specifically. I spent a lot o money on things that I never took action on. It as only the Buy and Hold and then subsequently Notes business that I finally put myself out there and succeeded. 

Originally posted by @Odie Ayaga :

It was nice seeing you in person at DME @Martin Saenz! It's interesting you brought this up as I met someone for the second time at DME who I had met a few months back who fits the profile of the "investor" you're talking about. He's been traveling all over and spending a good deal of money to take courses, go to conferences, etc but the overall sentiment I get from him I think is half of the answer to your question.

He, as well as those you describe, is basically on a quest for "The Perfect and Best Way" to invest. Many believe that there's a "best" way to invest and feel that until they find it they should stay on the sidelines. This is not exclusive to real estate. You can find the same in any industry or field where any for change is met with a bureaucratic system to determine the absolute best way to do it. Ideally there's a balance between the notion of Right First Time and Minimum Viable Product that should be struck whereby one acquires enough knowledge to act and then uses action to adapt and evolve. I believe most tend to skew towards Right First Time to a fault.

Odie, great insight. Thank you for sharing. I see a lot of truth in what you're mentioning here. Like with any other industry, there are a lot of bad deals out there and folks don't want to get burnt. You have to balance that with taking action in order to achieve success. It's a fine line. There also bears responsibility with folks that are thought leaders, JV experts, and coaches to give the newer folks what they need to rise up and be successful. Everyone needs to work together to grow the industry so it becomes more respectable and self-regulated.

Originally posted by @Wayne Snell :

Hi @Martin Saenz great seeing you at the events the past couple of weeks. I think one reason why people actually don't pull the trigger and take action is their fear of failure. What if everything they heard and learned actually doesn't work? Or if they somehow screw it up? I used to find myself in that boat before I got into real estate and notes specifically. I spent a lot o money on things that I never took action on. It as only the Buy and Hold and then subsequently Notes business that I finally put myself out there and succeeded. 

Too funny, Wayne....we need to spend more time together when we see each other. I thought I was going to be the mobile home king after taking Lonnie's course and the apartment king after taking Sue Nelson's course. Notes won me over and I'm going to stick around for a while:) On JV deals that you do, how do you help the passive person gain confidence?

Agreed Martin. I was going to be the vending machine king, apartment complex baron, t-shirt vendor... RE: your question about JV's we spend a lot of time with them prior to working together explaining what we do, ho we do it, the risks and potential rewards. We provide a complete JV package, references and for any deal they are considering what I refer to as the "Investment Analysis Summary" document which details the specific note deal, timelines, costs and probable exist strategies. I also point them to my videos and case studies we produced.

Hi @Martin Saenz,

In response to your question to @Wayne Snell about JV deals, I can personally say that I've been working with Wayne on 2 different JV deals regarding SF homes since last summer and I've learned a ton. I have access to all the documentation online and Wayne has been very forthcoming with answers to all my questions. It's been such a smooth and transparent process to me. He even helped me setup my SDIRA account. I've been involved with rentals for 15 years, but I'm loving notes and working with Wayne's company.

Christopher Venckus

few things come to mind.

most that don't take action  frankly don't  have the capital to take action.. especially in the note space.. were its cash and carry.. I know there are low value asset notes that are pretty cheap to down right cheap.. but in general for anyone to do anything in notes you need a few hundred grand in cash to start.

Also with NPN that's a ton of work.. and there is far more risk than what is talked about or glossed over in most HOW to seminars..

And then just garden variety greed I Suppose the few events I have been too. the case studies the speakers talk about is usually some whopper once in 10 year deal they did.. now its real.. but its not reality.. and I think the beginners feel that they too should get these types of deals and reality sinks in that they cant find them..

its not like being a landlord anyone who can fog a mirror can do that.. note business done correctly in my mind is an advanced strategy when it comes to NPN .. Now great performing notes from trusted suppliers is like Turnkey rental investing only in the note space.. and those shops exist.. I know we have done over 1500 of them in the last 5 years.. but the product is in such high demand its 100% referral business.. which is pretty cool.

I can speak as an individual in this position. I have taken a course, be it online, to learn the basics of NPN investing. I have gone so far as to invest in an LLC and set up a bank account. However, I have yet to seriously pursue purchasing notes, despite my continued interest. I am held back by a couple reasons:

1) I am unsure if I want to pursue something that will be as active as NPN investing is. I prefer putting energy into something I can grow, and manage, and then back away from. I don't really want to put energy into creating another job, even if it is on my own terms.

2) I struggle to see how investing, even as a JV partner, ever gets me to my passive income goals. Without the ability to leverage my money, it would take a lot more money than I have. I've considered note funds ( assuming I can get 10-12%, as an accredited investor), but still fall back to rental real estate since I can leverage and grow more quickly. JV is also tough because I have to borrow money to do this. I have access to inexpensive money, however I would want some immediate income to pay off the costs of the money, and I know there's no way to guarantee this.

3) I live in Hawaii, and worry that my distance will end up costing me all my profits.  This is generally what led me to note investing, since it can allow you to be relatively location agnostic.  Still, it's one of my excuses for not starting.  Just the cost to attend seminars, conferences, could cost me the profit from a deal.  Everything I've read says network, network, network...hard to do from here (granted I'm not a natural networker anyways).

These are all mostly excuses...I acknowledge this.  I think the best path for me is to find someone I want to work with, gain a little confidence in the space, and then make the ultimate decision to pursue it more seriously, or find another path.  I think one of the things that would hold people back is the all or nothing expectation.  It is hard to ease yourself into this space.  That, and all my money would be tied up in notes that may or may not work out.  It's hard to diversify without a great deal of capital.

Not sure my thoughts offer you all much, but thought I'd share where my mind is at.

There are WAY to many reasons (excuses) to not succeed. No original thought here, but I believe strongly that the single biggest reason for failure or lack of action is a disconnect with their purpose- their “why?”

People start off with great intentions, are all in for as long as you can remain in a “learning state,” then quickly become discouraged when they take a few swings and miss. Successful individuals, as a whole, connect actions with their meanings. The day-to-day grind is never as sexy as the videos, books, and successful people tell you it is.

I struggle to do anything in life without being able to connect it with my overall greater purpose. But once I believe an action is related to my “why,” I struggle to stop.

@Martin Saenz on another note, I just gave a similar Leadership Professional Development class (LPD) to my Soldiers on the power of goal setting last week. I wish I would have watched your video, I would have stolen a couple ideas and tweaked the class. Thanks for sharing.

Originally posted by @Wayne Snell :

Agreed Martin. I was going to be the vending machine king, apartment complex baron, t-shirt vendor... RE: your question about JV's we spend a lot of time with them prior to working together explaining what we do, ho we do it, the risks and potential rewards. We provide a complete JV package, references and for any deal they are considering what I refer to as the "Investment Analysis Summary" document which details the specific note deal, timelines, costs and probable exist strategies. I also point them to my videos and case studies we produced.

 Very nice, Wayne.  You put a lot of TLC into your offering.  Good to know.  I still think there may be time for you to be the vending machine king as well:)

Originally posted by @Christopher Venckus :

Hi @Martin Saenz,

In response to your question to @Wayne Snell about JV deals, I can personally say that I've been working with Wayne on 2 different JV deals regarding SF homes since last summer and I've learned a ton. I have access to all the documentation online and Wayne has been very forthcoming with answers to all my questions. It's been such a smooth and transparent process to me. He even helped me setup my SDIRA account. I've been involved with rentals for 15 years, but I'm loving notes and working with Wayne's company.

Christopher Venckus

 Thanks Christopher.  That's always positive to hear.  This industry weeds out people that operate on the contrary.  Wayne is good people and I've seen him over the years but we haven't connected as much as we should have.  @Gene Chandler sings his praises as well and I trust @Gene Chandler.

Originally posted by @Jay Hinrichs :

few things come to mind.

most that don't take action  frankly don't  have the capital to take action.. especially in the note space.. were its cash and carry.. I know there are low value asset notes that are pretty cheap to down right cheap.. but in general for anyone to do anything in notes you need a few hundred grand in cash to start.

Also with NPN that's a ton of work.. and there is far more risk than what is talked about or glossed over in most HOW to seminars..

And then just garden variety greed I Suppose the few events I have been too. the case studies the speakers talk about is usually some whopper once in 10 year deal they did.. now its real.. but its not reality.. and I think the beginners feel that they too should get these types of deals and reality sinks in that they cant find them..

You are too awesome, Jay.  Thank you for your thoughts each and every time.  I started with 200k of my own money so it's funny you mention that amount.  I took learning hard lessons with that money and a full year before I got comfortable, and I can from a landlord and business ownership background.  I see your point on folks lacking capital.  What are your thoughts on them becoming bird dogs by pounding on banks for inventory?

Funny on your thoughts with Landlording...Find good property, tenant placement, and property management has been one of the easiest things I've done in business but I deal with A and B class properties in the DC area for the most part. 

As for speakers (I do speaking myself), you are limited on time and need to give highlighted deal examples as people there don't really want to hear the true life of a note investor (spending the day acting like a administrative assistant).

Originally posted by @Mark Baldwin :

I can speak as an individual in this position. I have taken a course, be it online, to learn the basics of NPN investing. I have gone so far as to invest in an LLC and set up a bank account. However, I have yet to seriously pursue purchasing notes, despite my continued interest. I am held back by a couple reasons:

1) I am unsure if I want to pursue something that will be as active as NPN investing is. I prefer putting energy into something I can grow, and manage, and then back away from. I don't really want to put energy into creating another job, even if it is on my own terms.

2) I struggle to see how investing, even as a JV partner, ever gets me to my passive income goals. Without the ability to leverage my money, it would take a lot more money than I have. I've considered note funds ( assuming I can get 10-12%, as an accredited investor), but still fall back to rental real estate since I can leverage and grow more quickly. JV is also tough because I have to borrow money to do this. I have access to inexpensive money, however I would want some immediate income to pay off the costs of the money, and I know there's no way to guarantee this.

3) I live in Hawaii, and worry that my distance will end up costing me all my profits.  This is generally what led me to note investing, since it can allow you to be relatively location agnostic.  Still, it's one of my excuses for not starting.  Just the cost to attend seminars, conferences, could cost me the profit from a deal.  Everything I've read says network, network, network...hard to do from here (granted I'm not a natural networker anyways).

These are all mostly excuses...I acknowledge this.  I think the best path for me is to find someone I want to work with, gain a little confidence in the space, and then make the ultimate decision to pursue it more seriously, or find another path.  I think one of the things that would hold people back is the all or nothing expectation.  It is hard to ease yourself into this space.  That, and all my money would be tied up in notes that may or may not work out.  It's hard to diversify without a great deal of capital.

Not sure my thoughts offer you all much, but thought I'd share where my mind is at.

Thanks for your rich feedback, Mark. I've done very little JV'ing and understand your concerns on the arrangement. Funds are a good way to store money but not when you borrower money to invest in them if I understood you correctly. NPN's can be a good strategy in conjunction with other real estate ventures you may have to get to that passive income point. I'm speaking as someone who has earned freedom of time (which I value more than money). NPN's are a lot of work, but you don't have to leave the house to do it successfully (does the banker leave his or her cubicle?). Thanks again for your feedback.

Originally posted by @Bo Goebel :

There are WAY to many reasons (excuses) to not succeed. No original thought here, but I believe strongly that the single biggest reason for failure or lack of action is a disconnect with their purpose- their “why?”

People start off with great intentions, are all in for as long as you can remain in a “learning state,” then quickly become discouraged when they take a few swings and miss. Successful individuals, as a whole, connect actions with their meanings. The day-to-day grind is never as sexy as the videos, books, and successful people tell you it is.

I struggle to do anything in life without being able to connect it with my overall greater purpose. But once I believe an action is related to my “why,” I struggle to stop.

@Martin Saenz on another note, I just gave a similar Leadership Professional Development class (LPD) to my Soldiers on the power of goal setting last week. I wish I would have watched your video, I would have stolen a couple ideas and tweaked the class. Thanks for sharing.

 Bo, I live in Woodbridge but am moving to Stafford.  I spent 12 years building museum exhibits around the Pentagon and National Defense University....we should connect.

Hi @Martin Saenz it was nice meeting you at the IMN. You’re a super humble guy.

Obviously an idea without a plan is just a wish.

I jumped in way too quick. I also find that there are a lot of sharks in the water. I am not a trusting person to begin with.

Don’t get me wrong I’ve met a lot of decent people. @Wayne Snell for example whose participated in this thread and one of his investors commented. I’ve never done business with him but I’m very resourceful and it’s not taking me long to find out who’s who. I’ve heard that he’s actually taken money out of his pocket to protect his investors. Besides the few times I’ve spent with him, he’s actually a funny guy with a great personality. And again I’ve heard from very reliable people, honest to a fault.

I think for me, my problem is twofold. One lack of inventory and two I would say the amount of work. Nothing in life comes easy but I just sold a business with a bunch of employees (a major headache) but I had great ones too. If I needed things done I would just give instructions and it would get done. So I got spoiled. One girl was amazing, she would handle any task I need.

My wife is exceedingly sharp and would be a huge asset if I could grow the business. She’s a compliance consultant for Broker/Dealers. They call her the “silent assassin”.

I don’t have it in me to sit on the phone all day making calls. But I believe there’s more than one way to skin a cat. So I’m trying to find an angle. I put a lot of pressure on myself; it’s a blessing and a curse.

But the battle continues.

Another thing I failed to mention above is that many people out there are in a safe and secure position e.g. they have a job with a regular paycheck. They have responsibilities (e.g. wife/husband, kids, mortgage payments) and taking that dive into action represents putting their security at risk. I think it's easier for people without many of those responsibilities and security to dive in. 

Originally posted by @Odie Ayaga :

Another thing I failed to mention above is that many people out there are in a safe and secure position e.g. they have a job with a regular paycheck. They have responsibilities (e.g. wife/husband, kids, mortgage payments) and taking that dive into action represents putting their security at risk. I think it's easier for people without many of those responsibilities and security to dive in. 

 Odie, you are a person with a lot of insight and wisdom.  Seems like two kind of people out there....one's that focuses on keeping a tight hold of their assets and one that ignores their assets they've built while going out to obtain new assets

@Martin Saenz I think of it at it's simplest as the hunter vs gatherer mindset. It's a considerable risk to venture out into the wild and put your life on the line for a substantial boon. Gathering provides less risky, more secure and predictable results. The notion that the grass is always greener on the other side tends to hold true in that those at either end of the spectrum always seem to tend to want to move toward the other end, however the shift in mindset from living a secure life to taking investment risks is a considerable one that many never succeed in making.

Originally posted by @Odie Ayaga :

@Martin Saenz I think of it at it's simplest as the hunter vs gatherer mindset. It's a considerable risk to venture out into the wild and put your life on the line for a substantial boon. Gathering provides less risky, more secure and predictable results. The notion that the grass is always greener on the other side tends to hold true in that those at either end of the spectrum always seem to tend to want to move toward the other end, however the shift in mindset from living a secure life to taking investment risks is a considerable one that many never succeed in making.

 Well put...hunter vs gatherer. Many that hunt without preparation, thought, and vision end up back at gathering while wounded, lol.  Thanks again, Odie.

No problem. Very intriguing topic. Just one theory in a field of many

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