1. It’s not how much money you make that matters, it’s how much you keep.
2. Don’t let friends, family, or co-workers talk you out of real estate investing unless they have more money than they know what to do with. If that’s the case, do what they’re doing.
3. Free contracts are worth what you pay for them. Have your contracts approved by an attorney who will defend them in court. If you have to ask why, you’re new to the business.
4. If you own real estate, it’s not a matter of “if” you go to court, it’s only a matter of “when”.
5. Inspections are not an expense, they’re an investment. We have spent money to repair hidden problems that an inspection would have uncovered.
6. If a contractor needs a draw advance to buy more materials for your job, you can be pretty sure they’re using the money to buy materials for another job.
7. You will pay for education, either ahead of time from a mentor or by the mistakes you make as you go through the process.
8. When negotiating, spend more time listening than talking.
9. When negotiating a purchase, never think for the seller.
10. We’re in the problem solving business. Find out what your customer needs, then craft a solution to their problem.
11. Know your exit strategies (have several) before you buy.
12. Manage your tenants, don’t let your tenants manage you.
13. If a potential tenant doesn’t have enough money for their deposit and first month’s rent, they won’t have enough money to make the monthly payments.
14. If a potential tenant asks you to reduce your rental amount, they won’t have enough money to make the monthly payments.
15. If a potential tenant says their child support/unemployment income will enable them to make the payment, they won’t have enough money to make the monthly payments.
16. If a potential tenant says, “the Lord will help me make my payments” (does this happen only in the South?), you can be pretty sure you’ll end up evicting them both.
17. A millionaire makes $500 per hour so if a job (painting the walls and repairing a toilet) can be done for less than $500 per hour, hire it out.
18. Pick a mentor who is successfully doing the type of business you want to do because you don’t know what you don’t know.
19. Never get greedy. The best deals are the ones where everybody wins.
20. In real estate, there is such a thing as good debt.
21. We live in a world of abundance; there are more than enough real estate deals out there for all of us.
22. Don’t wait until you know it all to get started. None of us know it all.
23. It’s always a great time to be in real estate, you simply have to pay attention to the economy and real estate fluctuations to know how to direct your investments.
24. Don’t wait to buy real estate, buy real estate and wait.
25. There’s never been a better time to be in real estate.
26. Set up your real estate investment entities (LLC, S-Corp, etc.) early in your career to best protect you and your investments as well as to prepare yourself to take advantage of all the many tax benefits real estate offers.
27. If you’re not getting good deals, you don’t have enough leads – you need more marketing.
28. Working too long on one “deal” trying to force it to work means it’s not a deal and you’re still working on it because you don’t have enough leads.
29. Marketing is not an expense, it’s an investment.