I have been a Realtor and investor for over ten years and tonight I went to my first Real Estate Investor Association(REIA) meet up. I highly recommend anyone who is interested in investing in Real Estate or who is already investing in Real Estate join their local REIA and attend functions. There is no reason to be intimidated or worried if you will fit in to the group. There were about 15 people at the meeting and most people were not “big time” investors, but people just starting out.
There were a few wholesalers at the meeting who could be very valuable to any investor. A wholesaler finds properties to buy, but usually is not wanting to fix and flip the house or rent it themselves. They want to get rid of it quick and make a quick buck. Wholesalers prefer to sell or assign their deals to investors and many times the houses are sold well below market value. I have never bought a house from a wholesaler, but a few investors at the meeting use wholesalers quite often. I also have heard many, many stories online about great deals investors have found through wholesalers. One of the main reasons I attended the meeting was to meet wholesalers and start to build relationships. A key ingredient to any investor’s successful strategy is finding properties at below market value. I hope wholesalers can help me improve my long-term rental strategy.
Wholesalers find properties in a number of ways including through MLS. They will get a property under contract with an assignable contract, then shop the deal around to their investors in hopes they can assign it over to the investor for a fee. Wholesalers also use direct marketing and bandit signs to find motivated sellers that do not have their home on the market. If a wholesaler finds a motivated seller they will get the home under contract and assign the contract over to an investor or buy the home outright and then quickly sell it to an investor. A great wholesaler and a great investor can make a great partnership. The wholesaler may not have enough money to buy and fix up a property, while the investor may not have the time to put together a marketing plan to off-market sellers. Together a wholesaler and investor can solve both parties needs.
There were three wholesalers at the meeting and they all seemed to have potential for great deals. One lady said she will be getting the chance to sell a package of REOs before they are listed on MLS. I am always cautious when hearing about deals like since it seems to good to be true. We did exchange cards and I will see what happens!
Financing your investments
Pine Financial, a hard money lender put together the meeting and provide short-term loans for fix and flippers. I don’t use hard money because it can be very pricey, but it is a great option for those just starting the business with little capital. Meeting lenders and learning about financing options is another great benefit to a REIA meet up. We also talked about local portfolio lenders and how investors are financing their deals.
This meet up was also full of local active investors who are fix and flipping or buying rentals. Many strategies and pointers were given at the meeting. If I were a new investor I would have been taking notes the entire meeting! Margins for fix and flips, where to find deals, how to use direct marketing and many other items were discussed in detail.
There were a few Realtors at the meeting who focus on investing and helping investors. If you are looking for an agent who specializes in investors, a REIA meeting is a great place to find one. One of the presenters was a local Realtor who gave us great tips on finding deals and showed us many deals in the area that could be found on MLS.
The more people you know and the more people who know you are an investor the better chances you have of someone bringing a deal to you! What is better than having someone doing all the work for you and bring a deal you can make a lot of money on. I am hoping the wholesalers I met can provide me with a few deals I can use as long-term rentals or fix and flips. With deals on MLS getting harder and harder to find I want to use whatever means possible to find deals.