Today, we’re going to discuss different types of properties, where to look for them and how they can make you a successful real estate investor. Over the years, I’ve learned how to find houses for sale in ways that most people wouldn’t think about. It’s important to go past the MLS listings and the normal resources because everyone utilizes those, which creates a shortage of properties.
Here are ways to find properties you can invest in:
- Lawyers – Locate an attorney you can trust who will give you leads when properties come available. Since lawyers deal with cases of divorce, bankruptcy, death and more, they can be a great source of homes that need be sold quickly.
- Bankruptcy Cases – If you can go to the courthouse or go online and find the bankruptcy trustee for a property that has been deemed bankrupt by the court, then you can buy the property from the trustee. The homeowner no longer has the power to sell, but the trustee does and they are usually reasonable people who will accept a fair offer.
- Property Tax Lien Certificates – When annual property taxes haven’t been paid by a certain date, a tax lien certificate is sold for the amount of the delinquent property taxes. Interest accumulates until the taxes are paid. These certificates are public information you can easily find. A property owner who owns a lot of back taxes may be willing to sell you the certificates, and eventually, the property usually has to be sold as a tax-deed sale.
- Letters to Owners Who Don’t Live in the Property – Something that has been very lucrative for me over the years, I send letters to property owners who own a property mortgage free and they don’t live in it. I can use anything the seller will accept as currency for the equity of the property. From the letter, I want to peak their interest and get a response. Don’t promise things you can’t deliver but give them a way to contact you so you can make a deal.
- Expired Multiple Listing Service Properties – If a property doesn’t sell after a while, many times the owner will take it off the market and no longer list it with the real estate agent. If you can find a realtor who will share the information about those properties, you can make a deal directly with the owner. If you find a real estate agent who will help you, remember to be kind them and thank them for their services in a monetary way.
- Craigslist – Thousands of people use this service every day. I’m not familiar with it, but many younger people utilize it. You might find it’s a great place to find properties to buy, but remember it’s all about the numbers.
- Drive Through Neighborhoods – Take a different route every time you drive through town to look for homes that need a little work done. If I find a property that needs some tender loving care, I will stop and ask for the owner or the name of the owner. Then I approach the owner to see if they’re willing to sell the property.
- Eviction Cases – At the courthouse, you can find a list of cases that are coming up for eviction. A landlord might be very willing to sell you a property if they are constantly in eviction court. Later, you might even find another landlord, such as a Section 8 landlord, who will take over the house from you.
- Houses for Sale By Owner – When you see “For Sale by Owner” signs in the yard, this could be an opportunity. Sometimes they are flexible and willing to sell. However, if it says “By appointment only”, stay away from those because they aren’t motivated.
- Foreclosure Publications – Every foreclosure where proceedings have started are listed in a publication. But if you’re cash deficiency, this won’t be a good avenue for you.
- Newspaper Ads – Not your daily newspaper but many communities have a weekly paper that you can find in a local supermarket. Typically, these are people you can easily contact directly and negotiate.
- People Who Moved and Have Two Mortgage Payments – In my experience, those you are making a mortgage payment every month on two homes are very motivated to sell the one they moved away from. A lot of times, I offer them the debt they owe on the property.
- Probate Properties – Surviving children of the person who passed away are normally willing to sell if they live in different states from where the property is located. There is a tremendous opportunity, in this case, to make a good deal below market price with the children. If you see a sign that says “Probate Property”, contact the family after a few weeks have gone by to give them time to process.
- Divorced Couples – Sometimes, the person who acquired the house in the divorce find they can’t afford to keep it.
- People Who Know Others Who Need to Sell – Talking to people everywhere is the best way to find these types of situation. Ask people in a neighborhood if they know of anyone wanting to sell, especially older folks. They typically know a lot about their neighbors.
- Real Estate Investment Clubs – They can be a great resource, but make sure you do the math first to make sure you never overpay for a property.
- People Who’ve Lost Their Job – You don’t want to prey on someone’s bad luck, but you could be helping them from damaging their credit. You might be able to acquire a property and let them get out of the mortgage and keep their credit to get another home when they get back on their feet.
There is so much opportunity everywhere. I want you to go out and be able to find the properties that are out there.
Be sure to visit my website www.LarryHarbolt.com where you can find numerous courses and lessons that teach the strategies and techniques I talk about in my articles that will help you do more deals and make more money in the process.