Making Money in Real Estate Requires Motivation

by : Omar Johnson

Motivated buyers and sellers are the fuel that drives a quick turn real estate business. Buyers are discussed elsewhere; this article is about creating sources of motivated sellers and getting them to talk with you.

There are many reasons why a property owner might be motivated and flexible enough to work with an investor, but there are a few common types of property owners that are especially worthy of targeting with your marketing efforts. These include pre-foreclosure sellers, who are listed publicly on the notice of default list available through a courthouse or title company; abandoned property owners; landlords, lists of whom may be available from the section 8 housing authority, and owners with listings that have expired.

One method of gathering leads for motivated sellers is by farming. This involves canvassing a neighborhood street by street, becoming intimately familiar with local property values and capturing potential motivated seller leads photographically, including abandoned properties and properties for sale or for rent by the owner.

While you are in the neighborhood you are also distributing business cards to people you talk with, leaving fliers on doors, and leaving signs placed in visible but non-invasive locations. With a consistent approach this method will result in fresh leads being brought in on a regular basis from the field as well as over time a steady stream of phone calls from the cards, fliers and signs positioned in the neighborhood.

Another broad method of drawing sellers to you is marketing. You can market to any of the types of sellers already mentioned as well as to any other type of homeowner you can imagine or classify using any of several classic methods. One of these methods is direct mail, which involves sending postcards or letters to particular property owners. This can be targeted towards abandoned property owners, landlords, pre-foreclosure sellers, or any other type of homeowner.

Repetition is what gets results here. Another method is telephone marketing. If you can acquire lists of phone numbers of the types of homeowners you are interested in, you can execute a telephone marketing campaign. Yet another method of drawing sellers that is available on a reasonable budget is placing ads in print and internet publications.

These can be in general media or targeted to a specific audience. In addition there are several other forms of marketing, such as radio, television, and outdoor advertising, that can be useful for the real estate investor but which are beyond the scope of this article.

The bottom line is that if your business is not getting a steady stream of motivated sellers to buy properties from then it is suffocating. You should have a definite goal for how many sellers you want to talk to per week, and if you go a week without meeting that goal you should interpret it as a sign that something needs to be fixed.

Don't let it continue if you want to make continual progress with your business. More sellers coming to your business will equal more and better deals and bigger profits.