Question 4 Which Properties Are the Real Opportunities

Your lead generation activities are working, and you have investment opportunity leads. Now what? The number one cause of disillusionment and lost momentum is chasing too many leads that look like opportunities but aren't. Although there is no foolproof way to avoid wasting some time with these "suspects," there is a way to avoid wasting a lot of time. It's called qualifying your leads. All this means is that you always must ask a few qualifying questions of the seller or the referrer to make sure the property falls within your Criteria for what you're willing to consider. In other words, they qualify as "prospects."

#4: Which Properties are the Real Opportunities?

/^Separate Suspects from Prospects

1. Qualify all Suspects

2. Focus only on Prospects

Figure 48

The way to convert suspects to prospects is to write down the broad Criteria that are most important to you and then make sure the property meets them. Properties that do—true prospects—are worth inspecting in greater detail. You still will end up talking to a lot of sellers and seeing a fair amount of property in this qualification process. Some aspect of your Criteria may demand that you get personally involved to get the details you need to make a sound investment decision. There also will be times when individuals in the Support Circle of your Work Network can step in on your behalf and help you qualify properties. Your real estate agent or contractor may be happy to take a look at a property for you and give you his or her opinion. These people are in your Support Circle because they are good at what they do and because you trust their professional judgment. If the suspect turns out to be a true prospect, one way you can reward those people is by involving them professionally in the deal.

The presiding wisdom when you're asking the question "Which properties are the real opportunities?" is to bear in mind your strict Criteria and never violate them. Great Criteria act like a safety valve and protect both your time and your money. The truth is that building great lead generation Criteria requires focus over time. If you're looking at single-family homes in a certain part of town, you can get a rough idea of what they sell for and rent for by looking at the current area listings. However, count the most toward market values and rental rates. You need to understand why a certain property sells for the market average while another sells for $15,000 more or why a certain property rents for the average rent while one down the street rents for $150 more. Each time you look, you get a snapshot of how your Criteria perform in specific circumstances. Different factors affect value differently in your targeted areas, but your focus over time will give you insight into this process. Millionaire Real Estate Investors are always refining their Criteria; they want the tremendous advantages that come with truly understanding their market.

They say that beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and that is certainly true in the game of real estate investing. Millionaire Real Estate Investors approach lead generation with a posture and perspective that allows them to recognize legitimate opportunities and disregard properties that might be trouble. It's a posture and perspective of the watchful investor, and it's built on the Five Laws of Lead Generation.

"When you buy a property, you want it to be worth more that day than what you pay for it."

Marshall Redder Millionaire Real Estate Investor Grandville, MI

the more suspects you investigate, the better your sense will be of which ones represent true prospects. You'll start to understand which aspects of your Criteria

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