When I first got into the real estate investment game, I had very little resources. I’m talkin’ bare bones here. I had my phone, my truck, a handful of generic contracts that I downloaded off the internet, the shirt on my back… and maybe a bit more hair than I have today.
And I made the rookie mistake (yep, you’re not alone) of thinking that I needed a lot more to make a lot of money. I needed (or so I thought) a fully-equipped office space, expensive suits and a fat wallet to get my business off the ground.
But I was wrong…. and so are you if you fall into the “I need more to make more” mindset.
Getting Started Back to the Basics
Truth is, all you really need are the basic fundamental tools to get started. A computer, a phone, some specific knowledge, lots of heart and even more determination to be successful.
If you can check those off your list, then you’re off to a good – no, great start. And as you start to grow your business (baby steps) and build relationships with other investors, wholesalers, contractors and other key investment players, you’ll find the following tips (hopefully) quite useful.
7 Tips to Start Real Estate Investing
#1 Business Cards
Some say they’re antiquated, but I still think you need them. When you hand someone your business card – a creatively done, sexy business card, that is – you look more professional. It’s that simple.
I suggest ordering 100 cards in the beginning, and I strongly recommend setting yourself up with a challenge. Challenge yourself to distribute all of the cards everywhere and anywhere you can. Then come up with creative ways to make an impression when you hand out your cards.
Personally, I like to take selfies with a $100 bill in my hand and save it on the phone of my potential wholesaler. Here’s where the magic happens; every time I call that wholesaler, he or she will see my face and big bucks, creating an association between me and money. See where I’m going with this?
#2 Address Choice
Do you use your personal home address or your “business” address? My recommendation is to use a P.O. Box address once you can afford it, and here’s why…
UPS treats P.O. Box addresses like suite numbers, so imagine what that looks like to a seller. You might be perceived as a high roller, baby!
Using a P.O. Box address that looks like a suite number makes your business appear larger than it may be (or actually is) to a seller. It’ll seem like you have a physical office space even if you’re working from your bathroom (you laugh, but you can get a lot done while on your ‘throne.’ Just sayin’…).
Not to be confused with identities. Your identity is your branding, how you portray yourself and your business to the world. Your entity, on the other hand, is your legal being as a business.
My recommendation is to name your entity something in between selling and buying. Stay middle of the road when naming your business, so people know you’re an expert in both practices.
#4 Google Domain
Establishing a Google domain will (again) make you look more professional. And who doesn’t want that?
You can pick a name, build a website and set up a custom email. With your Google domain, you will get private registration, easy integration, a custom email, domain management tools, customizable subdomains (but we’ll get to that some other time) and email forwarding. Awesome sauce.
#5 Google Voice
In short, this is your phone solution. Once you have a Google domain set up for your business, get Google Voice and your free phone number.
You can customize your phone settings and “name” your callers, so you know exactly how to respond and what’s about to go down when the call comes in. For example, when sellers call me, my phone says “motivated sellers,” so I know to get my game face on and get in a quiet space to crush the call.
You’re always going to be weeding through crappy websites and useless or false information. That just comes with the territory…
But along the way you’re also going to find some incredibly insightful and helpful sites that you won’t want to forget. So bookmark them. You’ll come back to those useful sites time and again.
#7 Dropbox or Jumpshare
Both of these are effective file sharing programs. You’re going to have more documents, contracts and pictures than you could possible imagine, and you’re going to need to swap and share, so do it in an organized and seamless way.
Choose one of these programs, like now. You’ll be glad you did.
7 Tips to Start Investing - What Do/Don't You Need to Start Investing
Look, these tips I shared with you today are vital to your success. Remember, you don’t need everything and the kitchen sink to get started real estate investing. But you will need these tools. So use them to your advantage, take action today to start building your business the smart way.
Until we meet again, keep working hard… and keep it classy!