Posted about 2 months ago

How To Find Your First Deal

By now, I’m assuming you’ve read a couple of my blogs and are at least somewhat interested in real estate investing and seeking financial freedom, but maybe just aren’t sure where to start yet. You know the process looks something like this:

Find a house. Buy the house. Fix the house. Sell the house.

This is the gist of it for now (I’ll expand on each subject later on). So, how do we FIND A HOUSE? What methods are there? Biggerpockets posted a great list here to check out but I’ll name the ones I like best.

  1. MLS
  2. Wholesale
  3. Auction
  4. For Rent ads
  5. Biggerpockets/marketplace
  6. REO Agents
  7. REI Groups / meetups
  8. FSBO ads
  9. Direct mail marketing
  10. Drive 4 dollars


I already mentioned it above but this is still how I find half of my deals. Yes, there is bidding involved, but I just stick to my numbers and move on when someone beats me. There will be more another day. And some investors get real creative digging through this list such as refinishing an unfinished basement, adding an Accessory Dwelling Unit in the backyard, or buying a SFH and splitting it into 2 units for rent. There are many nice ways to increase value on existing properties if you have a keen eye.


This is the second method that I find the other half of my deals from today. I just spent a lot of time finding wholesalers lists to add my name to. Some in person during networking, some on websites online, some from other people’s referrals and some from Facebook groups. Then sit and wait for emails to pour in. Or call them once in a while to remind them you are looking.


This is something I did in the past but I have unfortunately walked away from this after this became my biggest mistake in my real estate career to date. Not saying that others can’t find success in auctions because I have heard of some insane deals made here. It was just never a process I felt comfortable with since you have to buy the house sight unseen and pay cash on the same day. Worth taking a look, but do a bit of research before you buy here.

For Rent ads

I have heard of other investors finding deals by combing craigslist for rent ads or facebook. The idea is that if a rental listing has been sitting on the Seems like a very creative way to find leads.

Biggerpockets marketplace

I haven’t had the time to look at this because by the time I start searching I tend to find a new one and get my hands tied with a new project before trying this method out.

REO Agents

Again, another method I heard of that seems unique. Haven’t tried it yet because it seems like it needs a bit of work to build relationships with specific people to get this method to really work. I hear that nowadays big corporations like BlackRock are buying up entire portfolios from banks so not sure if this method is still as effective as before.

REI Groups

Working on trying this method in the near future now.

FSBO ads

Same as For Rent ads. It’s a long shot. Mostly people who are looking for a specific price or unwilling to work with an agent to save the commission fee. Worth a try if you’ve got a lot of time on your hands.

Direct Mail Marketing

This method takes a while to get running because most people who are in a stressful situation don’t want to talk to anybody when debt collectors are chasing them everyday. Also depends on the type of budget you want to put into this. I’ve had people who I contacted in a 7-touch mail campaign reach out to me 3-9 months AFTER I stopped mailing them.

Drive 4 dollars

Touted as one of the top methods for finding deals if you’ve got more time than money. This method involved driving around your local areas and finding the worst house in the best neighborhoods. I personally prefer a nice cul-de-sac off the main streets. It’s like a direct mail marketing list, but more targeted. I look for signs of distress like; junk cars, peeling paint, tall grass, boarded up windows, saggy/blue tarped roof. The more signs you see, the better!

So what do you think of these ways to find deals? Which of these would you consider trying out?