STEP #1: DO WHAT WORKS
As you do real estate investing deals, figure out what works for you. Do that deal, then rinse and repeat. Build a business strategy. If that strategy is to buy, rehab, rent, and refinance, then do that over and over again.
That doesn’t mean you can’t adjust your strategy or try new things. If you’ve got that rehab and rent strategy but you get some interest in a property as a VRBO, try that out. Look and the numbers and see if it makes sense and is scalable—and if the numbers are right then do it again.
You don’t need to have a unique business model or a diverse portfolio as a newbie investor. Once you figure out what works for you, keep doing that and build your cashflow so you can scale up your business.
The great news is that as you do more of these deals, you’ll become magnetic. You’ll start getting calls about similar, bigger opportunities. Don’t be afraid to make a name for yourself by doing the same thing over and over and doing it really well.
STEP #2: BUILD A TEAM
When you’re starting out you’re learning on the fly and just starting to put the pieces together. But the more quickly you can build a team the more streamlined your business will become. You won’t have to chase everything down if you’ve got a team with boots on the ground that can handle some of the daily details of your business.
These don’t have to be employees. They could be funding partners. If you’ve got someone doing that work for you and keeping you in the loop along the way that frees up your time to do other things that actually make you money. And if you’ve got a team in place you can deliver and finish the deal—and then do another deal.
You’ve got to be able to execute before you can scale. So find people (property managers, general contractors, property acquisitions specialists) who can execute. Train them well. Communicate with them regularly. Then do the things that are going to grow your business—raise the capital and find the deals. You can raise an unlimited amount of money and buy an unlimited number of properties, but if you can’t stabilize them on the back end you’re going to wind up with an unlimited number of nonperforming assets.
The key is to build a team with diverse strengths. If you’ve got a business partner you need to be good at different things. Otherwise, even if your business is successful you’ll always feel like one of you isn’t necessary. Maybe one of you raises capital and one of you oversees operations. Or one of you handles the construction aspect. Whatever it is, you should be different enough to work together well.
STEP #3: FIND A MENTOR
Get around people who are thinking bigger. Let that stimulate you to do big things, try new tactics, and keep pursuing your dreams.
Learn from others who’ve already done the things you’re struggling through. They can give you resources or tell you how to handle the challenges you’re facing. There’s no problem you’re facing that someone else hasn’t solved. Rely on your network. Read online forums. You should always be the dumbest, poorest person in the room. That way you’ll always be in a position to learn and grow.
This often happens informally, but it’s also worth paying for coaching. People who are the best in their fields have coaches, whether they’re athletes, businessmen, or in some other field. Get serious about growing yourself and your business.
STEP #4: THE REAL R AND D: RIP OFF AND DUPLICATE
Finding people who are five, six, or seven steps ahead of you isn’t just good for advice. You can build your business just from watching other people. You don’t need to reinvent the real estate wheel or come up with your own proprietary system.
Watch and don’t just learn—do what successful investors are doing. Rip off and duplicate great ideas. They’ve been tested and proven, and as you apply them to your own business strategy you’ll figure out how each idea can work to help you scale up your business.
STEP #5: START SMALL—JUST START
If all of this sounds scary, don’t panic. You don’t need to quit your day job tomorrow. Instead, just buy a house. Fix it up in your spare time and flip it or rent it out. Then buy another house and do the same thing.
Most real estate investors will tell you their biggest regret is not getting started investing sooner. If you put it off, life happens and suddenly you’ve been working that 9 to 5 for 10 years, making pretty much what you made 10 years ago and getting two weeks of vacation. If that doesn’t fit with your goal to live an amazing life and get the most out of it, then do something about that.
The point is to start. You’re never going to do big things if you don’t start somewhere.
What steps have you taken to do big things? Give me a shout-out below.
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