Scott Rister

The Check Is In The Mail!
by Scott Rister

There are actually two engines that drive my personal real estate business as I continually ask myself these questions: Is this marketing technique geared toward finding a person with a problem or a property. I've found that I always look for people with problems and the properties come. Is this marketing technique significantly different than the next guy or gal? See, I'm just not going to let myself get grouped together in the middle of the pack of other real estate investors. In this group at times you'll find everyone trying to sell the same flavor of ice cream: Vanilla!! I like chocolate myself.

You want proof of what I'm talking about? Open up your Sunday classifieds and just count how many "I Buy House" ads there are. Are you starting to see my point? It is the above #2 listed pulse check that prompts me to do things smarter and more effective for bottom-line more sellers. This business is absolutely so much about marketing. In fact if you're into buying and selling real estate for big profits, then your primary operating procedure should start and end with finding truly motivated sellers. Period!

If you're with me thus far then what I've stated is all in "theory" and sounds great, right? What you as an investor really need is not only to show you where the water is but also how to drink it. Let's get to some nitty-gritty details on exactly what I'm getting to and want you to have a truly great opportunity to find more motivated sellers than you ever have. What I want to give you an overview of is what I call my "Check In The Mail" program. What does that mean? Well, I can assure you it is not about sending anyone money in the mail but making sure this happens:

Your Letters Get Opened and Not Trashed

The potential seller turns into a really motivated seller after receiving a check with their name on it. Complete instructions on how that seller can turn the check already in their hand into cash and real soon. There is absolutely something magically special to many, many potential sellers when they have a check in their hand with their name on it. About now you're probably thinking that you're not a billion dollar endowment fund to be throwing around money to get people to sell their house.....its not about that.

It is all about marketing with a significantly different and highly effective approach that I've used with many direct mail targets. Here it is in summary what you should very much key into if you're really into big profits and many motivated sellers to choose from. I use Versa Check Form #1000 check stock that can be picked up at any Staples, Office Max or Office Depot. This is check card stock that has a blank check at the very top 1/4 portion of the page. The remaining part of the page is white and blank. That is the section of the check where I fully explain my marketing angle with all the seller benefit laden solutions why they should call me immediately.

It will probably take you some "tweaking" with a standard Word document but all the letters and numbers will match up easily. I just make the check out to them and having my name signed on the bottom. The amount of the check and is simply stated "To Be Negotiated". I always start the letter out, "This check and more could be yours....." Then dependent upon the target market the written marketing of the text will be read by the seller.

I use standard double window envelopes so the person can see the color of the paper. You know, that check color paper. They just have to open it because they weren't expecting this money. Yes some people are a little "peeved" after opening the letter and "yes" it is a marketing ploy to get your letter opened.. but it works!!!! I also simply stamp on the outside of the letter too "Check Enclosed!" in red ink. Costs about $15 to get one of these stamps set up from like Staples/Office Max.

I've found that this technique works best on direct mail targets such as: Absentee Owners, Code Compliance, Bankruptcy, especially Pre-Foreclosure. You need somewhat "softer" approaches in direct mail to probate and divorce situations so I wouldn't advise it within those two areas. It is all about getting your letters opened to the target market you're mailing to. I simply don't have a response rate to report to you yet, but I can definitely tell a difference in recent months from deals coming my way.

This entire biz in real estate is all about working smarter, and not necessarily harder. Time is the most important commodity you have as a real estate investor and this simple technique maximizes the best use of your marketing dollars and bottom-line the amount of time spent on putting those deals together for big paydays. Give this approach a try and starting getting your phone ringing off the hook with motivated sellers. Good hunting as luck has absolutely nothing to do with it!


Scott Rister
Scott Rister is a successful full-time investor living in Dallas, TX. Closing 72 deals in one 9 month period, Scott's property acquisition company, One-Stop Realty, LLC maintains current holdings in four states.

After building a sizable portfolio of keeper properties that was not getting him where he wanted to go, he discovered the art of wholesaling. Since that time he's done hundreds of deals and focuses exclusively on motivated sellers using technology and a targeted marketing approach.

Scott Rister's approach is based on the belief that the successful real estate investor will leverage the best use of his/her time by implementing systems that can run on auto-pilot with minimal maintenance.


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