Do You Have to Lie to Get that First Deal??


Last night, I was just browsing around and reading a couple of posts on some other rei discussion site and I saw a title that struck me. The title said, “You’ve got to lie!” So as I wondered what the heck this could possibly mean, I clicked the title and that’s when I saw the post.

This guy talks about lying to get your first couple of deals. He tries to justify this method by saying that sellers want to only work with successful people; they want to work with people that have experience. He was begging the question of, “Why would someone want to do a deal with an investor who’s never done a deal”. He said you have to lie and say things like, “I just bought 3 homes last week and I’d like to buy your home this week”.

He went on to say that by lying you are giving you and your buying program credibility. Then he ended the discussion by saying this, “Anyone that says not to lie, tell them to put food on your table, pay your bills and you won’t. Otherwise go for it”

So after I finished throwing up from reading this garbage post. I went back in to see the replies.

The response from others

This guy got slammed! Investors were coming out the woodwork to respond and give their 2 cents. I don’t think one person agreed with this guy. He tried to go back and forth with them saying that this method helps investors and that is only used to get the deal and blah, blah, blah.

So what was really said to combat someone like this… It comes down to one word!


Your integrity is the only thing that adds credibility to you and your business. Many investors tell you that your first deal is the hardest. I got that, but to lie in order to get it is unethical and you may putting yourself down a road that you don’t want to go down. They type of investors that lie, in my opinion, end up being the type of investors we hear about that commit mortgage fraud, foreclosure scams, and various other scandalous schemes in order to make money.

If you are honest and forthright with a seller, and you come to them from a genuine position of strength, then they will most likely always give you the deal. (strength was another thing this liar tried to use in his justification).

Don’t get tempted

I don’t care if it takes you months to get a deal. Heck, it took me 2 years to finally get my first deal, but I never need to lie to get that deal, or the one after that, or any to come in the near future.  Yes, I understand that you need to put food on your table. I understand that you may have a family you need to take care of. However, your integrity will seep through in your dealings with a seller and you will sleep at night knowing your ethics aren’t at stake while doing everything you can to take care of your family.

Getting that first deal is tough, but its easier when you reach out to others for help. Network with like minded individuals.

I’ve known many investors who have told a seller, “I have never done a deal, so this will be my first one.” Then the seller responds, “Ok, well go for it”. They don’t really care as much as you think they do. They want to get the home sold. A method I used was that I would always put it on my partner, so if they asked me, “Have you done a deal like this before”, I’d say, “Well, I’ve been working closely with my partner who has alot of experience doing this, and he’ll most likely be helping me out on this one, but I’ll be leading the effort to get your home sold.” That was the truth! They respected that and we moved forward.

I’ve rarely been asked this question, but when I have I’ve just been honest about it. If you want more experience to speak off of when you’re speaking to a buyer or seller, be confident, partner with other investors,  do what you say you’ll do, and do more deals.

To Our Success,

J. Lamar Ferren

New Breed Investor

Ps. Do you feel it’s necessary to lie in order to get that first deal? Why or why not?

Photo: discoodoni

About Author

J. Lamar Ferren is a 26 year old New Breed Real Estate Investor who takes down deals nationwide. Through direct response marketing he uses creative and outside the box methods, both online and offline to attract buyers, sellers, and investors.


  1. I just finished my first deal and did not have to lie at all to get it. The seller never asked how many deals I had done. If they had, I’d have told them the truth. And right now, I’m working on my first short sale – again, the sellers never asked how many deals I’d done. I don’t think they care. As long as you sound competent, they’ll work with you.

    • Hey Christina, First off Congrats on your first deal. I’m glad you didn’t have to lie to get it. I agree that they really don’t care about your experience as they would your ability to close the deal and get them out of there situation.

  2. Le Jon Ratchford on

    This a great post , I can relate to this situation. Yes I was told by many to fake it. I disagree. I address my business dealings as me and my colleagues, this seems to give my clients trust in me and my business. Also I read often any question I am unable to answer i make a point to tell them I will be back shortly with a responds. LeJon

    • Lejon, responding to unsanswered questions like that is definitely the best response. In regards to the “fake it” mentality. I do believe in the concept of “faking it until you make it”. However, my take on this is a little different. I feel that if you are usually not confident, not a people person, and not competent in your skills, then you have 1 of 2 choices. Get the heck out of the real estate business… or push yourself outside your comfort zone and be the opposite of how you see yourself. Eventually as you do this, you will Live into who you truly want to be and you won’t really be “faking” anything. With that said, I don’t believe in not being authentic with others.
      .-= J. Lamar Ferren´s last blog ..(Part 2) Warning: Don’t spend another Dime with Google until you see this… =-.

  3. I’m just starting and can’t imagine beginning my career that way..Karma karma karma..I’ve read a few of your blogs and they are all great.You’re coming from the right place.Whoever wrote that article advising to lie is a whack-job..Keep up the good work man

  4. J. Lamar,

    Good on you for taking the high road.

    I am a firm believer that ‘honesty is the best policy’. Not only with real estate investing, rather, with every aspect in life.

    I don’t think someone should feel pressured to lie in order to get their first deal.

    What they should feel pressured to do, is to operate with confidence. If they are operating with confidence, they are projecting this confidence to the seller.

    If they come off as strong and confident, it is likely that they are not questioned by the seller.

    Also, it is important for them to be prepared with an answer to the question, if they do in fact get questioned by the seller.

    Just as you were prepared in mentioning that you were working with a partner with more experience, novice investors should be prepared with the same type of responses if this is true in their individual situation.

    Best Regards,

    ps: do you go by J. Lamar, or just Lamar?
    .-= Neil Uttamsingh´s last blog ..How to buy your first rental property – Step Seven =-.

  5. Jacqueline J. Elem on

    As much as possible don’t do it because words can easily come around if you are a big fat liar and you surely don’t want that sale to be your last one right?

    There is a lot of ways to kill the cat means there are a lot of other ways of answering a question that might have caught you off guard. Just learn to master your craft so that you’ll be able to maneuver any situation.

  6. Frankly, J. Lamar….I’m not surprised to hear that someone felt that was necessary to get the deal…but sure am surprised they admitted it publicly and advised others to do it!

    I’ve had plenty of conversations with new investors, particularly wholesalers, who try hard (either lying or coming JUST SHORT of lying) to portray a level of experience that simply isn’t there. It’s really sad and as you’ve said its a terrible way to do business.

    There are many things that you can’t control, but your integrity is something you have complete control over and is vitally important to success in life and business.
    .-= Shae Bynes´s last blog ..The Wealthy Widow =-.

  7. I remember when I first started selling real estate. What I lacked in experience I more than made up for in enthusiasm and drive. I didn’t lie about anything then and I don’t now. I always want to be viewed as honest and ethical by realtors, clients, friends and acquaintances. In this business your reputation is very important.

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