Steve Cook

Finding and Filling Your Niche!
by Steve Cook

I have to say: I live in one of the toughest states in the country for investing. Our Maryland legislature is constantly passing new laws that have serious effects on the business of real estate investors. And you know what? It doesn't matter if you are a landlord or a flipper, there are new laws passed frequently that will affect your business.

For example: I had a discussion with a student yesterday, who was discouraged by the recent laws that have been passed regarding Maryland foreclosures. His business model was made suddenly obsolete by the changes in the law. I could feel his pain! He had a great thing going, and he felt like he was just put out of business by the stroke of a bureaucrats' pen.

Rather than allowing him to be discouraged, I told him to look at things differently: "You know the ins and outs of this law," I told him. "Do you see a void left by the changes in the law? Perhaps the law closed one door while opening another." As it turned out, he was well positioned to make a simple adjustment and go right through one of the doors that the new legislation had opened.

Before our talk, it seemed to him that all the doors were closed, and for a moment that was probably the case. With a little creativity, however, he found the new opportunities in his current challenges.

I share this with you, because I want you all to think this way: there are always obstacles…and there are always opportunities. I've been in the wonderful world of real estate over 10 years. If I had kept doing the same things that I did when I started, I would have shut my doors after only two years in the business. But, after many adjustments, here I am, still going strong, even in this new, buyers' market.

When I look back, my strategies have changed numerous times over the years. A part of me feels like I've been unfocused. But the reality of the situation is that I've been adjusting. You too need to adjust, too, so that you can survive.

In real estate investing, I'm always looking for the void that needs to be filled. And then, when I find it, I make it my niche. Sometimes that void only lasts for a short period of time before the opportunity is gone, but that is how people make money.

It's one of the best takeaways from Napoleon Hill's book, Think And Grow Rich is: look for the seed of an equivalent or greater benefit in every difficulty. Or, put simply, find the void and fill it.

Adjust your business to exploit the windows of opportunity that open up in your market from time to time. Rather than being stopped by difficulty, take each challenge on, cash in on the trend, and start searching for the next void that you can fill. When you do, you'll be celebrating many new successes - successes that will financially rewarding as well.

Steve Cook
Since 1998 Steve Cook has flipped many hundreds of houses as an active Baltimore-area real estate investor. Steve's unique specialty is the "flipping homes 1-2 punch", a proven system of real estate investing that powerfully combines wholesaling and rehabbing houses. Steve Cook is dedicated to helping others succeed through understanding and aggressively applying his time-tested, step-by-step approach to flipping real estate.

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