by Tyrus Gross
Flipping houses for profit can be very lucrative, if done correctly. It can also be a huge nightmare, if you don’t know what you’re doing. My name is Tyrus Gross, and I have been buying and selling real estate for over 25 years.
This article is a step-by-step blueprint to help you avoid the headaches I went through, and to shave years off your learning curve. My sole purpose for writing this is to make sure you know exactly what to do to succeed at real estate investing. The material I’ve provided here is a brain dump of over 25 years of experience (both good and bad).
In other words, I want you to avoid the mistakes I made, and become as successful as possible; as soon as possible. If your plan is to buy a house (actually take title to it), and then turn around and sell it, I’m going to show you the safest and fastest way to do that. But first, I’m going to give you a little background on myself, and teach you what not to do.
I started investing in Los Angeles, CA in 1989. Like many people, I spent a lot of time and money on real estate material. One so called guru taught me to get a list of pre-foreclosures, and then go door-to-door. He instructed me to literally go knock on the door of people that were about to lose their home.
Surprisingly, there were a few people that let me inside their house (as a side note; many people are very emotional when they’re about to lose their house).
I had a friend that got invited into someones home, and he found out the hard way that the homeowner had a loaded shotgun in the back room, and was extremely emotional about the fact that he was going to lose his home that he, and his family, had lived in for over 20 years.
For the record, I’m instructing you to never go door knocking uninvited. There’s a much better way to buy houses. Never put your life in danger when buying houses. There are a ton of opportunities to buy discounted properties, and I’m about to share with you much of what I’ve learned over the years.
The fastest and most streamlined way to buy houses at a discount is to buy them from wholesalers. Before I explain the wholesale buying process, I would like you to envision what I was doing before that. I was told by several gurus that I needed to get a list of REOs (Real Estate Owned: an REO is simply a foreclosure that has gone back to the lender), and then buy the house from the bank at a deep discount.
Let me tell you from experience, that is not an easy process unless you already have an established relationship with the REO Manager at the bank. Even then, it’s a real challenge to get the bank to come down to a price that you want to pay. Many times, door knocking and trying to buy REOs from the lender is a complete waste of time.
I spent hours and hours, even months and months, calling and leaving voicemail messages just to get someone to call me back. I lost track of the number of voicemail messages I left for REO Managers (I don’t even know if I was calling the right person), and I called and recalled at least 40 different lenders.
Let’s stop and think about that for a minute; weeks or months of time flushed down the drain. I don’t know about you, but I can’t stand to waste my time. Even when you do get a decision-maker on the phone, you still have to negotiate them down to a price that makes sense for you.
Now let’s compare that to buying from a wholesaler, but first I want you to know exactly what a wholesale deal is. A wholesale deal normally is 70% of ARV (After Repair Value). So, if the ARV is $100,000, a wholesale deal is no more than $70,000, which after you have made the repairs, leaves you with $30,000 in potential equity or profit.
My personal philosophy is that if I can’t buy it wholesale, I’m not buying it. The average wholesaler gets five deals a month, every month. In addition, the wholesaler doesn’t make any money until he/she flips the property to an investor like you or me.
In other words, they want to do business with you. When you call them, you’re not trying to sell them anything; you’re calling to give them money, and they will make a profit. That’s a call that house wholesalers truly enjoy taking.
You may be asking yourself how this process works, and why the wholesaler is willing to do this. Using our example above, the wholesaler has the property tied up at $65,000, and flips it to you for $70,000. He/she is going to make $5,000 for every deal he/she flips without ever taking ownership of the property (they’re really just flipping/assigning their right to buy the property over to you).
The wholesaler puts up very little money, usually $100-$1,000 to tie the property up, and makes a nice chunk of change on the backend. Then, the wholesaler will simply rinse and repeat that same process with other houses. Keep in mind that the wholesaler is doing all of the upfront paperwork, and other time-consuming activities, plus negotiating a great deal with you.
I don’t know about you, but I’m fine with a house wholesaler making money; as long as their houses are still at a wholesale price for me. I suggest that you get on some local wholesaler’s email lists, so you can get first crack at those good wholesale deals.
I also suggest that you do an Internet Search for house wholesalers. For example, let’s say you’re investing in Phoenix, AZ; then simply type the words ‘wholesale houses for sale in Phoenix, AZ’ into the search bar of your favorite search engine (or highlight and right click on the words for a quick Google search).
One more thing, always do your own due diligence on any type of real estate company that you plan to do business with. Try to find any online or offline comments or reviews about their previous and current business reputation, etc.
Tyrus Gross is a veteran real estate investor, and has been flipping houses for profit for almost 30 years. He mastered the process of finding wholesale houses with deep discounts in seven days or less, and has access to many Private Lenders who fund those wholesale deals quickly. He’s the author of the book Get The Deals Now which helps real estate investors to quickly find wholesale deals. He can be reached on his site at: www.GetTheDealsNow.com