Home wholesale is without a doubt one of the easiest real estate strategies, but it can be difficult to understand the process when you first start out.
I love to visit wholesale houses. You can make money fast with no risk, no credit, and either no money or very little money. I have bought several houses with nothing finished. But usually, I make a down payment of somewhere between $10.00 and $100.00 on each house. It’s actually easier to justify the seller not putting anything down than just giving him $10. But my lawyer told me that you really need to make a serious deposit to have a valid contract. It’s also a lot easier to walk away from $10.00 if you can’t find a buyer for the deal than a larger amount.
One thing I want to point out is that I never give that money to the seller. Always make the check payable to the closing attorney. That way, you will definitely get your money back if something happens and the house doesn’t close. When you buy wholesale, you don’t have to consider paying renters, utilities, insurance, and other costs associated with buying property to renovate or rent. Rehabbers also need access to significant amounts of cash that you, as a wholesaler, don’t need.
Where do I start?
All you need to succeed in wholesale houses is a steady stream of leads. Your job is to find motivated sellers who will sell their homes to you at a big discount. In my experience, you need to speak to between 10 and 20 people to find just one really motivated salesperson. Why the big difference in numbers? I believe that the more targeted your letter is, the better your response from motivated sellers will be. You also get more phone calls after sending multiple letters over a period of time than after your first or two letters. It’s not at all unusual for me to buy a house from someone I’ve been selling to for 9 months or a year; sometimes even longer. The salesperson who is not motivated today may be very motivated a year from now if his circumstances have changed.
Where can I find motivated sellers?
There are many ways to find motivated sellers when selling homes. You can use “Bandit” signs in areas where you want to buy real estate. You can place “We Buy Houses” ads in local newspapers and on Craigslist. The MLS can be another source of leads. The owner of a home that has been on the MLS (Multiple Listing Service) for an extended period of time can become a highly motivated seller if he pays two mortgages. Probate attorneys, divorce attorneys, and bankruptcy attorneys can also be a source of leads. But I can tell you after doing this for a few years. I find most of my motivated salespeople through direct mail campaigns. You will get great results with direct mail over time.
How much can I earn?
This is a question with many answers. I’ve made $3,000.00 on a deal (a figure I don’t particularly like), and I’ve made over $20,000.00 on some fantastic deals.These $20,000.00+ deals are not common in my area. Somewhere between $7500.00 and $12,000.00 is much more typical for me. For example, if you could only sell one house per month for $7500.00, you would earn $90,000.00 gross in one year. Not bad! If you have a full-time job and your wholesaler only makes 6 houses in a year and $5000.00 on each house, you would have earned an extra $300.00 for your effort.
Who do I sell my house to?
This is probably the scariest part for an investor looking to wholesale homes. If you’re new, you may be terrified that you won’t find a buyer for the house before you have to close it. If you’re not already a member of your local REIA (Real Estate Investors Association) group, this is the place to start. Join your local association and become active in it. These groups are a great resource for buying and selling homes. This is the first place to build your “buyers list”. You are looking for landlords and people who rehabilitate houses for your list.
Craigslist is another place I’ve had great luck finding rehabbers, landlords, and other investors to put on my buyer’s list. When I have a house for sale, I always put it on Craigslist. I’ve sold a few homes this way, but more importantly, I’ve found some investors to put on my buyer’s list who have bought multiple properties from me. Be sure to include photos of the homes when posting an ad on Craigslist.
If you have a home to sell, you can also find investors for your buyer’s list by placing ads in local newspapers and putting up Bandit signs in the area where the home is located. These are just some of the many ways you can build your buyer’s list.
Characteristics of a successful wholesaler
Becoming successful as a wholesaler requires many of the same qualities that you would find in any self-employed person. You will have to be focused, organized, and a self-starter, and you will have to have systems in place to stay on track. Your systems don’t have to be complicated, but they should be things you can repeat month after month. In my opinion, you must have a burning desire to “chart your own course” to succeed at wholesale houses or almost any other venture. There will be times when you just want to throw in the towel, and this burning desire will get you through these times.
We already mentioned that you need a constant source of leads. Leads = houses purchased.To take out these motivated salespeople, you need to do some sort of ongoing marketing. I have had great success in marketing to absent owners and heirs. People who need to sell their estate houses have been one of the best sources of motivated sellers for me. Most of these houses are well maintained but are just “ugly” or outdated.
Building your team
Contrary to popular belief, real estate investing is not a “solo” venture. It is essential that you start building your team from scratch. These are some of the people you need on your team.
Final lawyer You need a lawyer on your team. I have two on my team because, let’s face it, some people like to have a choice. My closing lawyers are highly respected in their field and by local investors. I know I can count on them to do things correctly, and they are used to getting things done quickly. Both the attorneys I use are investors, and they belong to our local investor group, KREIA (The Kentuckiana Real Estate Investors Association). They are also used to working with investors who wholesale homes and do double-closures.
One thing I would like to mention is that the closing costs are very affordable when you do “cash deals”. They are usually only a few hundred dollars for each transaction. This is important to me as I usually do double closes instead of allocating the contracts when I am in the wholesale business.
estate agents It is a must to have at least one broker on your team. I have personally built relationships with a number of brokers. They can help you with “comps” if you don’t have access to the MLS. Even if you can’t create your own compositions, they can help you determine the value of an unusual property or property that is in an area that you are unfamiliar with. Real estate agents are also a great source of pocket listings. Here are the homes they’re about to list but haven’t yet put on the MLS. You usually hear about one of these properties because it’s “dirty” or just in need of a lot of repairs. If they can sell it to an investor quickly, it’s a win-win for everyone.
Contractors and inspectors If you stick to them, you will become very adept at estimating repairs. However, there will be times when you need an inspector or contractor’s opinion on something. You should have these professionals on your team ahead of time as you typically work in a short time frame for your inspection period. Things happen very quickly when you are in the wholesale business.