Investing in real estate, particularly for those that are just getting their feet wet, can be as complicated as it is intimidating. All things considered, the pressure of landing your first property is either something that will make or break you. And for what it’s worth, far too many new investors succumb to the latter. Before they know it, their lack of experience becomes more of an obstacle than it needs to be.
It’s worth noting, however, that experience, or lack thereof, shouldn’t dictate whether or not you find a real estate deal. While experience is of the utmost importance, it’s never something that should hold you back. In fact, inexperience is no longer a viable excuse for new investors looking to land their first deal. There are a number of steps you can take as a new investor to find a deal that render your lack of experience moot. Let’s take a look at a few of the strategies I recommend for those of you brimming with potential, but don’t yet have the experience. The last thing you want is to lose a perfectly good deal because of the seller’s own ignorance of your talent. Here are a few tricks to show them that you are as good, if not better, than anyone else in the industry.
1. Make A Compelling Argument
Whether you have yet to complete a deal or are a seasoned veteran, real estate investors must lay it all out on the table. Few things, if anything at all, are more valuable to a new investor than transparency; it’s what will set the tone for any relationships, partnerships and deals that ensue. It’s of the utmost importance for new investors to wear their experience on their sleeve when trying to capture leads, even if you can only cite upwards of six months of “on the job” experience. Regardless of how long you have tried your hand at real estate investing, let it be known.
Trust me, it’s a lot better to be forthright and honest about your level of experience than to lie and find yourself in over your head. Few things instill credibility faster than benevolence, and credibility can take your career farther than you ever imagined. In it’s truest form, honesty will ultimately lead to more valuable relationships down the road, whereas deception will inevitably lead you down a path from which it will be very difficult to return.
Do yourself a favor and explain to those you intend to work with that you may not have the experience of a seasoned investor, but what you lack in experience, you more than make up for in other areas. Don’t stop at telling potential sellers how long you have been in the business. Instead, divulge anything you may be able to use to your advantage. The idea is to present the tools you do have in a compelling way. Remember, just because you don’t have experience doesn’t mean you don’t have anything to bring to the table. The greatest real estate investors of our time were once in your shoes; how do you think they landed their first deal?
It’s not what you say, but rather the level of confidence you exercise when saying it. Selling a home has become ubiquitous with the largest transactions in a person’s entire life; don’t let your experience, or lack thereof, convince them you are otherwise incapable of facilitating a timely and profitable transaction for every party. Everything you say, should be reassuring, regardless of how long you have been investing.
2. Don’t Exhibit Grounds For Complacency
Far too many new real estate investors are quick to discount their lack of experience, but I want to encourage those with less than lengthy track records to wear their inexperience as a badge of honor. While it’s easy for “experienced” investors to sit in their ivory towers and benefit from the deals their past has had a hand in creating, it’s also a lot easier for said investors to rest on their laurels. That’s not to say experienced investors haven’t earned every deal that comes their way as a result of their own hard work, but rather that success makes investors susceptible to complacency. One thing is for certain: only those who don’t exhibit grounds for complacency will be able to realize their true potential and new investors are no exception.
For better or for worse, new investors don’t have the luxury of complacency for one simple reason: complacency is directly correlated to achieving a predetermined level of success. You can’t exhibit a feeling of smug or uncritical satisfaction without having met a specific goal. And while some would disagree, I maintain that new investors are immune to the stagnation onset by complacency. At the very least, new investors have yet to experience any degree of success and are therefore incapable of becoming complacent. Don’t take the fact that you have yet to complete a deal as hindrance; instead, use it to drive you forward.
New investors void of complacent tendencies are inherently driven; they know that they can’t afford to rest on their laurels. As a result, the same inexperience that many potential sellers may stray away from might be your strongest asset. Whereas most see inexperience as a weakness, I see it as motivation; something to feed the fire. There is no reason you shouldn’t use your inexperience as a tool to further your entrepreneurial efforts. And, perhaps even more importantly, there is no reason to keep your enthusiasm hidden from the people you intend to work with. Highly motivated individuals tend to demonstrate an increased propensity towards success. The easier you make it for sellers to identify your motivation, the better off you will be.
3. Be The Best At Something
It should go without saying, but the chances of a new investor catapulting to the forefront of their own industry are small. Realizing true greatness as a real estate investor takes time and an acute knowledge of a relatively complex industry. However, the best investors represent a culmination of several talents and characteristics, not the least of which can be found in even the newest of investors. Having said that, there is a critically important skill that even new investors may have lying dormant inside of them: people skills.
Real estate is a people business; it always has been and always will be. Those new to the game that can realize the importance of people skills sooner rather than later will find that few things are more integral to owning and operating a successful real estate business. As a new investor, it’s in your best interest to develop world class people skills. I can assure you that nothing will aid in landing your first deal more so than the working rapport you manage to develop between you and your client.
Not surprisingly, people want to work with those they enjoy being around. If you can convince sellers that you are as genuine as you come off, you just might be able to get them to forget about your lack of experience. You would be surprised at how many sellers prefer a great working rapport over experience.
4. Enter Into A Partnership
I can sit here and talk till I am blue in the face about how easy it may be to convince sellers that your lack of experience isn’t a hinderance, but I digress. Truth be told, the ball is in the seller’s court. If you ever hope to land a deal from a seller with little to no experience, you need to bring something objective to the table; a tangible benefit that extends far beyond your own subjective traits. That said, there is one step new investors can take to ensure their lack of experience doesn’t prevent them from landing their first deal: teaming up with someone that has already realized success.
As far as I am concerned, the fastest and easiest way for an inexperienced investor to catch the attention of a seller is to team up with someone that has invested successfully in the past. That way, any concern regarding your lack of experience is rendered moot. It’s entirely possible for the right partner to make up for your own lack of experience. Mind due diligence and team up with someone that compliments your shortcomings, and you may find that your lack of experience is the best thing that ever happened to you. There is nothing that says teaming up with a competent, if not great, investor won’t be the best thing to happen to your business. After a few deals, your lack of experience will be nothing more than a nostalgic memory.