Wholesaling indianapolis warzones

11 Replies

I guess my question is, are the warzones even worth trying to wholesale? My letter campaign seems to be getting the results from these areas. Any thoughts would be appreciated.

It depends. Some of those war zones are closer to up and coming neighborhoods. Some of them just have no hope.

I know a couple guys here that ONLY buy in war zones. They will buy sub 30K properties all day long. They swear by Section 8 and do very well with it.

Find some investors like that to add to your buyers list. 

@Joe Butcher  - $30k is actually a decent rental here in Indy! LOL

@Dave Comer  - Yes, there are slum lords that love this stuff won't pay much for it.  If you can secure a "decent" 3BR for under $10k you should be able to sell it and make a couple bucks.

I used to sell life insurance door to door in war zones (fun times).  One thing that can work to your advantage is the suit.  When locals see a full grown man in a suit walking around a war zone they think one of two things: 1. Detective or 2. Jehova's Witness.  When you introduce yourself and they find out you are their to solve problems you can see the relief roll over their face. 

The absolute best tip for doing business in war zones (I should charge for this one): Barber Shops.  They are the social center of the neighborhood.  If you help just one person in a barber shop, you're in.  Everyone knows everyone's business at a barber shop.  Go in and get a haircut (even if you don't need one).  The guy/gal cutting your hair will ask you why you're in town, because your suit screams that you don't belong there.  Explain to him/her (in a voice loud enough for all the other patrons to hear) what it is you do.  If you play it right you will walk out of there with dozens of leads on all of the abandoned/troubled properties, names of landlords that buy properties etc...

Pro tip: I've yet to meet an independent barber shop owner that didn't have a side gig: rental units, pizza shop... something.      

There are homes all over Indianapolis at rock-bottom prices what I was told.

Joe Gore

The barbershop tip is gold. I'm planning on visiting a couple next time I'm in my hometown. By the way, do you think this would work with nail salons? They're everywhere.

@Todd Curtis  

I would hit beauty salons as an insurance salesman (I was selling disability policies and people that work at salons/barber shops/mechanics are succeptible to carpel tunnel).  I forgot to mention two things yesterday.

1.  Almost every local business has "No Soliciting" signs on the front door.  That's why I recommended actually getting your hair cut, you are a customer at that point... not a solicitor.  Then you just mention what you do when the questions roll in, stress that you're there to improve the community, then ask: "By the way, do you know of any distressed properties around?"  The women in the beauty salon love to talk dirt.  So if you're a man walking into the beauty salon actually pick something up for your wife or girlfriend (ask them what they need beforehand)... and be as clueless about it as possible.  Miss-pronounce L'Oreal or Tresemme when you ask the proprietor for help.  Her mothering instincts will take over and you're in.

2.  Manners and respect.  I got to spend alot of time with my grandparents growing up on a farm, and with them manners were not optional.  "Yes Sir, and yes maam" became defualt programmed responses.  When you are in a war-zone a truly warm person with good posture, unflinching eye contact, a firm handshake and good manners attracts attention; because it's foreign.  When you treat someone in a war-zone with genuine respect you may be the first person to ever do so.  I had a group of three drug pushers notice me in their neighboorhood, and follow me from a distance for the better part of an afternoon.  At one point the leader of the group (a 19 year old) hails me "Hey suit!" To which I responded: "Yes sir, how can I help you?"  It completely disarmed him.  He was at such a loss for what to say he stood at attention and saluted "yes sir!".  We had a good laugh to break the ice and I sold him a $20K life insurance poilicy with his 3 year old as the beneficiary.  When we were filling out the application I asked him "Occupation?" he gives me this dead-pan look... and I go "How about 'Entrepreneur'?"  At that moment he looked at himself in a way that he never had before.  He promptly gave me 15 leads on the spot, many of which became sales.        

Originally posted by @Ben G.:

@Shawn Holsapple  being that you are local to Indianapolis, what are your thoughts on renting to Section 8 tenants in Indianapolis?  This seems like it could be a solution to the OPs question about wholesaling.  Potential buyers...

 I have a few section 8 rentals that do fine.  They are, however, over $700 per month and built after 1945 [these are my two deal breakers for me to buy a property to keep now].

I have a different PM for these properties that specialize in section 8 and have a ton of contacts and experience.  This has helped out a lot.

@Matt Swearingen  you're a hustler. Love your stories! Tell us more.