Driving for dollars is probably the single greatest way for new investors to start finding awesome properties without breaking the bank.
If you haven’t heard of the term “driving for dollars,” here is a quick 3-step checklist to get you started.
- Get in your car (or bicycle/roller blades/Vespa/golf cart/Segway/tuk-tuk/horse-drawn buggie)
- Drive around
- Find awesome properties
It’s that simple! Obviously, after you find these properties, you have to run the numbers, secure financing, put in an offer, have the offer accepted, close on the house, fix it up, rent it out, etc.
But that is a post for a different time.
Today we are talking about a little-known hack that can drastically amp up your driving for dollars campaign.
You wake up in the morning and decide that you’re going to spend the afternoon driving for dollars. You grab a cup of coffee, take the top off your Jeep, and start blasting The BiggerPockets Podcast so loud that dogs start barking and old people shake their fists as you drive by.
No? Just me? Whatever… don’t judge.
Unfortunately, at the end of three hours, you’re left with chicken scratch on a notepad with random addresses from neighborhoods that you can no longer remember the names of. You get back to your computer and spend an additional two hours finding the properties on GoogleMaps, just to realize that you can no longer remember which houses were fix and flippers and which ones were for buy and hold. To top it all off, one of your addresses says it’s located 300 miles away? That can’t be right. Did I spell it wrong? What if that was my golden egg!?
I know what a lot of you are saying… #MillennialProblems, right?
Ok. I’ll accept that criticism on behalf of my generation. I will never know the struggle of driving for dollars before the internet or the automobile, but that is my burden to bear. In the meantime, let’s just agree that saving time is awesome. So for the sake of promoting efficiency, I’ll continue.
BatchGEO is a highly functional and beautifully designed website that creates a map from the data that you provide. Imagine this scenario.
You hop in your car and spend three hours driving around in your car on a beautiful Saturday afternoon. You travel to five different neighborhoods that you’ve designated for investment and compile a list of 45 unique properties that all fit your criteria. You have your computer sitting on the passenger’s seat and have been diligently typing in the addresses as you go along (while stopped, of course).
Besides just the address, you designate whether the property is for fix and flip or buy and hold purposes. If there is an FSBO or wholesaler contact number, you include it on there as well. You finally get home, grab yourself a cup of coffee and upload your spreadsheet to BatchGEO. The website then provides you with a beautiful GoogleMap that shows exactly where all of the properties you found are. This allows you to cross-reference the location with neighborhood demographics easily, which saves you hours of mindless data input.
Seem too good to be true? It’s not. Here’s how you do it.
Begin by creating an Excel spreadsheet to track your information. Here is an example of one that works well with the functionality of BatchGEO.
Simply drop your file on the BatchGEO website just like it shows below. Then press “Map Now.”
View your image easily through the GoogleMaps product that it creates. Zoom in as far as you want. You can even use Street View!
Lastly, click on an individual property to see all of the data that you input initially. Use this function in order to record names, numbers, email addresses and websites for later use.
Other Uses for BatchGEO
Driving for dollars isn’t the only time you might want a map of all your addresses. Here are a few other possible uses to get your creative juices flowing.
- Auction Sales
- Does your county have a website that publishes a list of properties in foreclosure? Instead of going through the properties one by one, format the list into an Excel document and use BatchGEO to view them all on one map. This will help to eliminate properties that are outside of your neighborhood quickly.
- Wholesaler Website
- Are you a wholesaler with a ton of properties for sale? Try turning that list into a beautiful map for your website (or email campaign). This will save your cash buyers time and keep them coming back to your website every day.
- Professional Presentation
- Are you trying to buy, sell, or finance a number of properties? Use the BatchGEO map to create a professional presentation that will wow your audience.
Have you used BatchGEO in the past? Can you think of any other uses for a map like this?
Feel free to leave recommendations or advice below in the comments section.