It was not long into my real estate investing career that I discovered the power of hard work when it comes to contracting and closing real estate deals. While the term hard work can be used in many different contexts, I am referring to the ambition and go-getter quality of doing what needs to get done to successfully bring a challenging deal to close. Over the years my ability to continually be willing to jump small and large obstacles to successfully close mobile home deals has only added to my portfolio, my positive word of mouth reputation, and my business’s bottom line.
Some of the most lucrative and experience-filled lessons have come from real estate deals that were moderately challenging to close; in other words, effort had to be given to make everything happen. In fact, where other investors tried to make a deal happen and gave up, I was able to prevail and profit.
Below are 3 stories that stress the advantages and benefits of going the extra mile for your sellers.
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3 Examples of How Going the Extra Mile Has Helped Me Close Successful Deals
1. Black Street
This seller, James, called from a piece of mail I had sent him. James was selling a 4 bedroom wood-framed home in a very high demand area. When I showed up to James’s home, I discovered my original advertisement letter was only one of over 33 sitting on top James’s kitchen table. James expressed that other investors had tried to help, even having a previous purchase contract signed, but everyone quit or failed due to his family “causing trouble,” as he put it.
I decided to accept the challenge, and we signed a purchase contract at a very win-win price for an all-cash sale. My exit strategy would be to either wholesale the home to a rehabber expert (total rehab needed), or I would partner with a local builder to demolish the home and build new to then split profits when resold.
Over the next 3 months — and 4 contract extensions later — the deal successfully closed. Most of the work and credit goes to my top notch attorney dealing weekly with the seller’s sibling’s attorney over a conflict of clear ownership. After 3 months and a small attorney bill of just over $4,000, the deal was closed. After closing James confided in me, saying that if it weren’t for the few times we went out to get drinks and the fact we spent some time together to get to know each other, he would have been much more scared and likely not have extended the sales contract when we often needed him to. However, James saw all the work we were putting in and continued to trust in our abilities to close. Rightfully so.
I certainly was not the first one to want to buy James’s home; however, I wanted this deal badly enough and was the first to stay persistent.
2. Willow Point
Over the course of my career, I have lost count of the times when being patient and calm helped me close a real estate investment deal. Not all sellers want to be rushed or need to sell fast. For these sellers, it is not time but the ease of selling that is appealing with regards to working with a local investor.
Mary Lou was a hard working registered nurse until 24 months ago, when she retired. A year before that, however, was the first time Mary Lou reached out to me concerning her property. At this time the market in our area was increasing and in high demand. If Mary Lou could sell to anyone, then why was she wanting to sell to me?
The answer was that in the current appreciating market, I was happy and willing to pay Mary Lou’s reasonable and fair price to get her home under contract. She knew I would close quickly and handle all the paperwork up to closing. Mary Lou had to do nothing but sit back and collect her check.
The seller wasn’t greedy or pushy; however, she would have been scared away if I would have come off pushy or greedy in turn.
3. Nebraska Street
Sometimes sellers are in a pinch and need to sell quickly. Raymond called with a 1992 mobile home he was selling inside a local mobile home park. The home was in decent condition for the age, and I was happy to make some offers to help purchase Raymond’s property. After an agreed upon price was reached, the seller told me that the property was not in his name but that he did pay the previous seller (the still current owner) the agreed purchase price.
In addition, Raymond had been paying for taxes and lot rent for the past 3 years since he had been living there. While taxes were current, Raymond was still technically not the owner and therefore could not legally resell the home.
Raymond admitted that if the home was in his name, he would have sold the home months ago. I of course asked Raymond, “Why didn’t you transfer the Title when you first bought it?” To which his reply was, “I didn’t have the money at the time.”
Based on experience I knew this problem had a solution. Here were the main steps I took.
- Sign paperwork to protect both the seller and myself.
- Call the State to get clear on the paperwork needed to transfer ownership properly.
- Hire a skip tracer to help track down the actual owner.
- Wait a few weeks’ time.
- Once the owner was found, a friendly talk with them was encouragement enough to get the duplicate Title signed correctly.
- The Title then was transferred into Raymond’s name, and then quickly into my personal property trust.
So in conclusion, there is simply not one reason to not go the extra mile. Have clarity and make sure every deal you pursue has a good chance of going through so as not to waste your precious time. You cannot predict the future, but you can stack the odds in your favor. Going the extra mile is almost always worth the time and effort if the deal is solid and you have a clear plan to accomplish your goals.
What are some examples where doing a little extra has paid off big?
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