Real Estate Investing Adventures – Part One

Action Steps!

I posted my first Craigslist ad today for an agent to find me deals! OK, so “it’s nothing fancy” and “That’s not hard!” is what comes to mind, but it has taken me over a decade to get to this point. No, it didn’t take me a decade to make the craigslist post. It took me over a decade to take meaningful action on my plan to be a real estate wholesaler and owner finance/lender.

I felt like I had to make a custom email address and, therefore, a custom website in order to post Criagslist ad. I made a goal to post the ad the same day my website was up and running. That happens to be today. I have a web design background, but choose to use Word Press to “make it easier.” Wow, Word Press was not easy! And the site looks horrible, especially to my high standards! BUT, it is up and that’s all that matters right now. Small baby steps. I can hire someone later to make it pretty or work on it if I want later.

How I got here

Shortly out of college, I took a course in real estate investing and how to wholesale houses, how to do lease options, and several other mini-courses. I did go “driving for dollars” and mailed some post cards. I don’t recall if I ever received any calls for those. (I am just now finding out that it takes 6 cycles of mailings in order to see any results.) Real estate investing has been constantly on my mind since this point. Real estate investing has actually been on my mind since I was little, but that’s a story for another post.

Fast forward to now, I have a house I bought and moved out of and turned into a rental home. I had tenants in that home for about 7 years that paid their rent on time and basically left me alone for the most part; a true blessing for a land lord. I thought I wanted to own rental houses as a retirement plan. I thought it was the only way to invest in real estate and get passive income. Boy was I ever so wrong!

Anyone that has owned a rental property knows that it is not easy and a lot of the “passive income” that I thought I would be making was just spent on the home for maintenance. Roof, plumbing, bathroom remodel, etc. My dreams of retiring and living off of the rental income were being slowly crushed right before my eyes! Something had to give. I needed another plan. I still love real estate and know there has to be another way to invest in it without being a land lord.

Original Plan

One of my many goals was to buy a storage facility as an investment. Come to find out, the rate of foreclosure is even less on mobile home parks than they are on storage facilities. So with the cash from the sale of my home, I had some ideas. These were the ones that kept coming up:

  1. Fix and flip properties to build up cash reserves
  2. Use it as a down payment for a mobile home park
  3. Use that money for becoming a lender on small/cheap homes

Where I am now

I bought this house in 2007 and it is finally worth more than I paid for it! So I figured I could do fix and flips with the cash from the sale to save up for a mobile home park. Starting with this house as my first “flip.” I had experience with fixing up bank owned properties and if I was going to get into repairing and selling homes, better to start with this one that I already had.

As the sales price keeps getting pushed down, I see the cash for my mobile home park down payment slipping through my fingers. I would have lost my butt on this deal if I didn’t already own the home and have a lot of equity in it! Original Plan #1 was no longer a comfortable option for me to do; Fix and Flips were OUT!

In looking for mobile home parks, it looks like most of them are well above $500,000, my absolute max purchase price (and dwindling quickly with every month my house sits on the market unsold). Most are above $1,000,000! So I will likely not have enough money down for this option yet either. Original Plan #2 Mobile Home Park is being put on HOLD.

This brings me to my final option, Original Plan #3, lending on small/cheap properties that other lenders won’t lend on and/or for people that they won’t lend to. While I like the idea of finding a wholesaler that can find me deals, I don’t know if those deals will be good enough to do what I need to do with owner-financing the homes I buy. I also don’t want to sit around idly waiting for a deal to come across my desk. It’s time to take action now!

Let the Wholesaling Begin!

I have made a commitment to start this and have made a post about it to hopefully hold myself accountable or look back and remember why I do what I do. I KNOW there is money in this. I KNOW my work will pay off. I KNOW it will not be hard forever. I KNOW this will set me up for a better financial future. Here we go…!

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