Top ten ways to secure a buyers list?

71 Replies

I have been reviewing the suggestion for creating a buyers list. I have seen some very good ideas.

I am thinking about gathering all the suggestions and making a list of the top ten (maybe more) and posting back to the forum.

Would anybody have a problem with me doing this?

As Lee Iacocca once said, “In times of great stress or adversity, it's always best to keep busy, to plow your anger and your energy into something positive.†In many real estate investors’ lives, stress stems from finding buyers, and from building a strong buyers list.

Finding buyers stand as a major cause of stress for real estate investors. Once the closing clock starts ticking, real estate investors work hard to find the often elusive buyer. Real estate investors certainly do experience stress caused by finding buyers.

In addition to the stress real estate investors endure from finding buyers, they, also, suffer stress from trying to build a strong buyers list. Not having a buyers list in hand causes many real estate investors added stress.

Finding buyers and building a buyers list can cause stress on real estate investors. By providing a top ten list on creating a buyers list might help in relieving some of the stress. Lee Iacocca could have been talking to real estate investors when he stated to plow your anger and your energy into something positive.

Top Ten of Building a Strong Buyers List: (from suggestions on Bigger Pockets)

1. Next time you are in an area to look at a house, look for "For Rent" signs. Write down the address or number, look up the owner and send them a letter or give them a phone call. Usually they have more than one rental and might be looking for more.

2. Go to real estate investor clubs and pass out property request sheets

3. Place a number of " Bandit" signs in several areas that say something like " Investor Special 3/2" , or Rent house for sale" . When they call you, get their parameters and then start looking for houses that fit their criteria.

4. Run Craigslist ads similar to the above. When you get replies always try to get their email address, so you can build a list to do email blasts.

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Please help me fill out the top ten. I only found four unique suggestions.

This may be posted somewhere but I don't know how to find it. Anyway. Here is my contribution. There are a couple of other ways up my sleeve but if I told you I would have to kill you lol.

I get email virtually every day from people who want to know where to find buyers for their wholesale deals. I see countless posts on here of people asking where to find buyers. So I figured I would put together most of the ideas that I have used or have seen used for finding buyers into a single post.

I am sure there are countless other places and ways to find buyers beyond what I am mentioning, so I will leave it up to other people to fill in the blanks that I have missed.

Keep in mind these are ways that I or my clients have actually used, so I know that they work because I have done it.

1. We Buy Houses Signs I call every single one of these signs that I see, I actually keep a note book full of numbers and info that I find out about these companies when I call.

I usually ask them whether they are still buying, what they are looking for, what percentage up FMV they are typically paying, and what areas of town they want to buy in.

While I have them on the phone I also ask them if they wholesale out any of their homes, if they do then I ask them to call me when they have something good. I tell them that if the deal is right I can close in less than 2 weeks with cash.(I can do this because I have other buyers already in place to buy their deals, sometimes these buyers could be other cash for your house buyers)

Here is a sample of a deal that I put together using this.

1. I called a we buy houses sign
2. Found out where they were looking
3. Put a home under contract for $52k in that area
4. Called them and let them know.
5. I signed a 6 month lease option with them for $64k
6. I closed the home.
7. The lease option started
8. He sold the home
9. We close this week, I make about $12,000 (I also made commission when I bought the house, because im a realtor)
10. He makes around $12k.
11. Were all happy.

2. Call realtors I call realtors and find out if they have any cash buyers that are looking to buy some wholesale deals. It varies on what I offer to pay them but typically I offer 10%-20% of my profit, or a flat 2-3% fee, each time the buyer they have given me buys a home. It creates a win- win, I get a buyer and they get paid whenever their buyer buys a home.

I offer the continuous pay because a realtors worst fear is that they give you a buyer and he buys from you, then when they have a good property to show their buyers they cant buy because they have already purchased from you.

If the realtors dont have cash buyers, I tell them that if they bump into any great deals, they should call me and if the deals good enough we can buy with cash and close in less than 2 weeks.( Often times you can use other realtors buyers to buy another realtors house and you can make money setting the two up)

An example of one of my clients deals that he ran this way.

1. I called my client about a great HUD deal
2. He liked the deal and put the home under contract for $115k (I made a $4800 commission on the home when it closed so I was happy)
3. We had 60 days to close the HUD home so he started calling realtors
4. He found a realtor with a cash buyer that was willing to pay $122,000
5. We assigned the contract (this is a secret)
6. We went to closing and his buyer brought $122,000 cashiers check.
7. My buyer left with a check for $7,000 ( he used none of his own money, and I found him the house so he was happy)
8. I left with my $4800 commission
9. The realtor who brought the buyer took no commission but got a commitment from his buyer that he would list the home with him when he sold it.

3. Newspaper ads I dont personally use this one, I have clients who have had great success with it though. They simply place a small classified ad that reads "Looking for buyers to purchase homes at 50-70% of true value"

I have picked up endless buyers with this ad though "Free List of 45 foreclosed/distressed homes" call or visit www.$$$.com. The reason that I have had so much success with this ad is because anyone thinking of buying real estate would much rather get a free list of 45 then have to call each individual ad. You can have a local realtor put together a list of properties for you and email them to you if you cant find your own. Then take the list that they send you and email it out to people that respond to your ad. Keep in mind you dont really care about the list that you send, you care about getting the name, phone number, and buying qualifications of responding buyers.

A real life example.
1. I placed my free list ad
2. I got about 30 responses for the month
3. Found one buyer who has paid me over $75,000 in commisions over the next 3 years on deals I brought him.

These were realtor commissions, but if you can find a buyer who is taking the kind of action he was you could seriously line your pockets wholesaling to him.

4. HUD homes this is my own technique that I started using to get buyers just for my realtor purposes. Watch for a great deal on a HUD home or any great deal for that matter, then park outside for a few hours and talk to the people going to check out the home. Most of the areas investors will find there way to the property and you can give them your card and be sure to get there info. Tell them that you run into alot of deals and ask them if they would like you to give them a call when you run into something decent.

A personal example.

1. I went to look at a good HUD home that I was going to buy myself.
2. The neighbor came over and wanted to see the home while I was there.
3. I showed him the home and he ended up buying it from me.
4. I ended up making $2500 in commission on it.

If I were not a realtor, I would have simply talked to him and found out what he was willing to pay, then wrote up a wholesale contract, then put the home under contract with HUD, then played the spread.

This was my most recent deal, but I have picked up endless buyers for other homes while parked outside of HUD homes. I call it hunting for buyers. Its kind of like deer hunting with a bait pile. The home is the bait pile and the buyers are all coming to eat.

4. Talk to your current buyers buyer typically know other buyers, ask your buyers if they know of anyone else who is buying (let them know you will only call the referal if they are passing on the property). You also might offer to pay your buyer for a referall fee if one of there people end up buying a house from you. This technique also works great if you have a buyer that only wants to buy in a certain area, then you can call their referall if you have a home outside that area.

Personal example.

1. One of my buyers had too many homes and could not buy.
2. I asked him if he knew anyone else who might be interested.
3. He gave me the number to a cousin who was an even bigger investor
4. I ended up selling 3 homes to his cousin this year, and paid him a referal for each one.

5. Local REI meetings If you have a local investor club join it, if you dont then start one. It kind of speaks for itself that this is where many great buyers will be. Just be sure you know a fair bit about what you are doing before talking to very many people about potential deals. The last thing you want to do is burn alot of bridges by showing your new found buyers a bunch of crap.

6. Birddogs for buyers Outside of having bird dogs look for homes for you, you can also have them look for buyers for you. Give them your cards and have them hand them out to people they might meet that are looking to get into real estate investing.

7. Brochure Boxes Just like realtors use brochure boxes you can use them to. If you have a property to move leave a brochure box that talks minimally about the property that it is left at, always be sure to leave out pertitant info like price, sqft, or bed/baths. If you give all the info away then people will never call you about the property. Focus the brochure mainly on other potential deals in the area or say that you are looking for buyers for properties at 50-70%FMV.

8. Out of towner and landlords Many people sell themselves short when they are dialing for dollars. Typically people call or mail out of town owners and other landlords to see if they want to sell. The funny part is if they dont want to sell then there is a chance that they want to buy, so ask them if they arent selling, then would they like to buy some more, or if your mailing then include buying info on your mailer as well.

Hope this helps! Good luck!

Here's an idea I just picked up. Go to and search your local area for properties. Email the landlords and ask if they are looking for more properties to purchase. Get the criteria and market for those properties.

That was AWESOME. Thank you for taking the time to type all of that!!!

You could also add to the list to pass out business cards when you are out looking at properties. Offer referral fees.

The good old fashion newspaper can bring both leads as well as buyers.

Thanks to Namon also for compiling the list.


Hi All,
this was the best of FREE information ever. I'm going to try most of these methods to create my buyer's list so that I can started wholesaling.

Thank you so much!!!

Hello to all...

The post caught my eye ...

How about this one ..

Get a list of the investors that have purchased a property in the last 3-6 months in the area you are looking to find deals in ...

That is your buyer's list.

These are the investors that regardless of the housing market are buying properties and closing on them... that means they have their funding in place and are the real deal.

If you want to further increase your chances .. determine the most popular zip codes for properties that were purchased and target those areas first.

Hope this helps

Good luck to everyone

btw. Remember the 80/20 rule.

So many times you are suggested 20 ways to build a buyer's list

Which are going to give you the real buyers with the least effort

Can you elaborate on how you used the realitor for the free 45 properties? What type of agreement did you have with the realitor? And was the $75 in commissions from the realitor?

For the last few months, I have been doing exactly what Chris has suggested, and have found this to be the quickest, easiest way to find buyers.

What I have been doing is running a search on the mls every week for cash sales in the areas that I work in. I take the addresses of the houses that have sold for cash, drive by them, and nine times out of ten, there is either a "for rent" or "for sale" sign in the front yard, or a rehab crew working on the house. I either call the number on the sign, or get out and give my card to the rehab crew and ask them to give it to the owner (sometimes the owner is there, and I can talk to him/her directly).

I don't know of a better way to find buyers than to do this. It works like a charm.


Section 8 Renter’s List- Section 8 is a great way to get some very quality buyers. Go down to your section 8 office and get the list of properties for rent. From there it is very simple to call the owners on the phone number listed and inquire, “Can I please give you a call when I get a truly great deal?†Then just add them to your buyers list and get ALL their information. Section 8 landlords are a tremendous source of quality buyers – especially for junker houses.

Property Management Companies – this technique that only works if you show up in person. Simply walk through the door at a property management company and ask if you can bring them a truly great deal for one of their customers when they want to buy another property. If it’s bona fide great deal and they communicate the deal to one of their existing customers then its win-win-win. You get the quality buyer you need, the customer gets the property they want, and the property management company gets another rental property to manage.

2 words....... Foreclosure Auctions.

Think about it. Most counties require investors to have cash at auctions within 48 hours or so. So, if they have cash and are bidding on deals, chances are they will have cash to buy your deals as well :) Pete the Ninja taught me that one. (that's Preston Ely's partner)

I do a version of the same thing Chris is talking about except I contact an agent and get a list of all of the homes that have sold in the past 6 months that were either rentals or foreclosures.

Trying to sift through every previous sale could be a nightmare in most markets. By getting a list ahead of time that is more narrowed down I can pinpoint buyers who are buying exactly what I am selling.

Once I have the list I cross reference the county tax records to see who bought the home....Then I contact the owners directly.

Students of mine have built sizeable lists in under 7 days.

I actually thought of this method myself when i was a newbie Realtor trying to find a shortcut for locating investors. It works like a charm.

Another one is to do a quick video of some of the homes for sale in your market and post it on some of the major video sites.

Just about a month ago I picked up a buyer who is buying up over 2 million in real estate over the next couple months....

I have had some of my videos grab top placement on the 1st SERP's within 2 hours for awesome keywords.

Kill'em and grill'em

Originally posted by Cris Chico:
btw. Remember the 80/20 rule.

So many times you are suggested 20 ways to build a buyer's list

Which are going to give you the real buyers with the least effort

With the market conditions in such shady conditions I would say go 80/20

Do the highest value activities first but bust your a$$, and do the rest of the top 80%

Plant your seeds everywhere....And a strong harvest is sure to follow.

Originally posted by Eric Medemar:
Originally posted by Cris Chico:
Plant your seeds everywhere....And a strong harvest is sure to follow.

...and child support payments, too!

This thread has really helped me. I am writing down the ideas for building a buyers list.

Instead of just spinning my wheels being excited I am writing down what I want to accomplish and what I need to do do accomplish my goals. I have no dillusions of getting rich quick, but I don't see why I can't earn a respectable income.

My goal for my first year of being serious is to do about five wholesale deals. I hope that would net about $30,000 or so. I don't know what that would ammount to after taxes, and other expenses. But I can say one thing, it is sure more then I am earning now.