Archive for November, 2014

The Secret to Real Rehab Profits

Posted on November 28, 2014 by

Want to recover the most for your remodeling dollar at resale? Keep it simple, pay to have it done right and don’t over improve. Moderately priced materials and finishes are a smarter bet than top-of-the-line treatments. Use quality, but the least ornate options. The simplest but most ideal forms of renovations you can do add the largest bang for the buck.

You will find, in a neighborhood of $100,000 homes, adding a $50,000 kitchen may give you the edge over the competition at resale, but it probably won’t boost the sale price much. Those who use REIAComps along with getting advice from the Valuation Support Desk have the edge knowing the right improvements to make in most any market area across the country. The complete control and feeling of confidence REIAComps users have over their deals is priceless.

At InvestorCompsOnline, the developer of REIAComps, from 2010-2014 smart investors who use a valuation first approach to investing, doing projects nationwide (no do-it-yourself), have attained excellent ROI at resale. When it came to adding the most dollar value at resale, here are the “Secret Six” which proved time and again to be the best areas in a home to address.

Drum roll please….in reverse order working towards the best renovation options, Upscale Owners Suite Addition comes in sixth. Focusing on the interests of the actual buyer, making them feel good when they lay their head down at night, is hard to mess up. Read More→


Starters, Estate Builders and Enders

Posted on November 28, 2014 by

There are three stages of real estate investing: Starters, Estate Builders and Enders. Do you know which stage you’re in? Many flippers and wholesalers think they’re Estate Builders when, in fact, they’re actually running a highly taxed retail business – they’re not real estate investors! (Saying this is sure to ruffle some feathers, but read on before you call me a liar.)

As the stage implies, a Starter is someone who’s just getting started in real estate. He usually knows little about contracts, rehabbing, landlording or how to creatively structure and fund a deal. He’s been to the closing table less than six times. We’re talking about someone who’s wet behind the ears!

An Estate Builder may still be new to real estate, but his focus is different from a Starter’s. An Estate Builder’s deals are structured to increase the investor’s monthly mailbox money! Mailbox money is money made when your capital assets are working for you instead of you working for your capital assets. Examples of capital assets are rental property and notes.

An Ender has been investing in real estate for decades. He’s very experienced at creatively constructing deals. Many Enders cut back on the number of rentals they own in exchange for simpler-to-manage capital assets like notes, options and master leases. Read More→


The sky was clear and it was a nice warm summer afternoon. My flight instructor had just stepped out of the small trainer airplane and left me alone for the first time. I was just about to taxi the plane out and to do my first solo flight as an aviation student. I was terrified and exhilarated at the same time. Just before my instructor closed the door behind him he leaned back in and gave me one last lesson that I will never forget. “Remember kid, takeoffs are optional but landings are mandatory.”

This was a great aviation lesson and an equally valuable business lesson. When flying a plane we need to make sure everything is ready before takeoff. Do we have enough fuel? How is the weather between here and where we are going? Do we know where we are going? Once you leave the ground there are no timeouts. You don’t get to pull over and walk home once you are in the air. You will land that plane in one piece or in many but either way you will land. Years later I realized that doing a real estate deal is no different. You can chose to close or not to close but once you do buy the deal you are in it for the long haul.

The point I am making here is, that like safely landing an airplane, our exit strategy for our deal is just as important. Some people say “you make money when you buy”. I wholly disagree with this statement. You may create value when you buy but you don’t make money until you exit the deal profitably. Saying that you make money on the purchase is a cliché that I find to be dangerous. This is like saying as long as I get my plane into the air everything else will take care of itself. I hope you would not get on a commercial flight after hearing the captain saying that. Trust me, your investors and partners will not want to hear you say anything like that either. Read More→


Why We Do What We Do

Posted on November 28, 2014 by

This month, I’m going to take a break from the normal subject matter that I write about (marketing, real estate, technology, etc.) to focus on something a bit more… important. If you’re not ready for a little introspection, go ahead & stop reading now. I won’t judge.

However, if you’re open for some insight that just might help you grow not only your business but yourself as well, I humbly invite you to keep an open mind & keep reading. Please know that I’m usually a very private person, so a lot of the subject matter I’ll be writing about here is challenging for me to open up about.

There’s nothing like a challenge or personal tragedy in your life that will almost compel you to stop or at least slow down to re-evaluate the things you’re doing and the direction you’re heading. For me personally, I had such a tragedy occur recently when my father passed away from a combination of Alzheimer’s, old age & a heart condition just one month shy of his 96th birthday. Three months later, his older sister (my aunt) joined him. She was mere weeks away from turning 100.

My father was a full colonel (retired) in the U.S. Air Force. He served his country honorably, and, as I recently discovered, contributed to many (Classified) projects during the time he served that set the framework for things that are still in place today. By the time this article is published, he will have been laid to rest at Arlington National Cemetery with full military honors. I have no doubt that this will be an experience that will be cherished by all who attend. Read More→


Outsourcing Your Wholesaling

Posted on November 28, 2014 by

Are you doing absolutely everything in your Wholesaling business? Are you driving for dollars, writing your own letters, stuffing your own envelopes, building your own websites, creating your own flyers, taking the calls from sellers, inspecting the properties, getting them under contract, then posting the properties online, pitching them at meetings, showing the properties to investors, etc? Whew – that’s a lot of stuff eh??

Well if you are doing absolutely everything on your own, it’s time to stop! There is help out there. And yes – there is a balancing act: “do I do it myself” or “do I pay someone else to do it”??? Naturally there are some things you will want to do on your own – mainly talking with motivated sellers, making offers, and then getting the deal sold to other investors. So how can you get to where those are the ONLY things you have to do? There’s a lot of other stuff right?


Well the marketing is obviously important – probably the most important thing. There are services out there that can do your marketing for you. Namely letter writing services like and companies like that. They will create either Yellow Letters or Postcards to send out and they will mail it for you. You just need to provide the list. I believe you can buy lists from them as well. And there are plenty of other list providers out there – do your research. So if you get a list and send it to now that part of your marketing is done. Sit back and wait for the phone to start ringing.


You could also outsource your call answering or your return calls by hiring a Virtual Assistant (VA) to handle this for you. You can either set up a voice mail service where the person leaves their info and then have the VA call them back OR there are live call answering services like “VoiceNation” and “PATlive”. Those services you can provide with call scripts which tell them what questions to ask when the people call in. This screens the motivated sellers with the tire kickers (people who aren’t that motivated just want to see what you would offer). At this point now you are only dealing with the motivated sellers and in the Making Offers phase (revenue generating activity!).


There are many other ways to utilize outsourcing in your Wholesaling business. Go to and you will find all kinds of great services you can use for as little as $5! I have used them I feel like 100’s of times for little jobs:

  • Logo Creation
  • Website help
  • Flyer design
  • Data Entry
  • Internet Research
  • Transcription
  • Formatting files
  • Creating marketing videos
  • Website/blog content
  • Photoshop work
  • Social Media help
  • And on and on and on!

Bottom line is, if you are not good at this stuff, don’t do it because it will take you hours sometimes and you will want to pull your hair out.

Another thing you can do is actually just hire a real assistant. It could be a college student, it could be somebody looking for part time work, but you can more than likely find somebody for $10/hr – and have them work 20 hours a week for you doing the things you don’t want to do or don’t have the time to do. Like managing all these things we’ve mentioned above. Another big time killer is going to look at properties – you can have your assistant do it and take pictures and send them to you. This alone could save your tons of time.

So it all comes down to what your time is worth and as a Wholesaler, I would say your time is worth at least $50/hr. If you are on a tight budget, I know it’s tempting to do it all yourself, but just start gradually outsourcing these things more and more and then your time will really become more effective and valuable. Then you will eventually get to the point where you don’t have to spend much time on this at all! Can’t wait for that right? Advice – go read the book “The eMyth” and then start to create systems that work for you instead of you working. That’s how you create a real business that can eventually run without you which is how you build true freedom and wealth. OK – off to it.

Feel free to check out our site for tips, advice, and a free course on Wholesaling and getting into the biz. Good luck!

Matt LarsenMatt Larsen started buying and selling real estate in October 2012. In the last few months, he and his wife Courtney have done over 40 wholesale deals with no prior real estate investing experience, very little cash and none of their own credit. Now they are both full time real estate investors, work on their own schedule and report only to each other.

Contact Matt Larsen

Matt Larsen’s Other Articles >>
Courtney Larsen’s Other Articles >>


There have been over 20 million foreclosures in the United States since 2007 and more than 5.5 million homes have been repossessed. Meanwhile the major banks have been laughing as they cash in to the tune of $65-75 BILLION dollars every month from the Federal Reserve. According to the regulators in charge of protecting our currency we should rest assured that this was all an innocent mistake. Well we now have leaked documents that show that the major banks created their tangled web of risky financial transactions not by accident, but with the specific intent of bypassing local jurisdictions’ recording requirements and taxes.

By now most real estate investors have heard of MERS as it has taken on a kind of bogey man type of presence. They might not know what it’s all about, but they know it’s bad. The concept behind MERS was fairly simple. The banks were creating so many loans and transferring ownership so much that it became an expensive nightmare to file the right documents in the right jurisdictions and pay the resulting taxes from each transaction. Instead of doing the honest and ethical thing – paying the taxes and filing the paperwork properly – more than 25 of the largest financial institutions and insurance agencies in the nation teamed up to create MERS, Inc. When a loan was originated, MERS would appear as the owner. Meanwhile, in the back office system of MERS, actual ownership and administration of the loan would be bought and sold countless times without the local jurisdictions or borrowers ever being notified, thus allowing the bank to avoid the taxes and document filing that were legally required. Read More→


Roger Salam

Posted on November 24, 2014 by

Roger SalamW. “Roger” Salam is an award winning inspirational speaker, best-selling author of several books on sales & marketing and Real Estate investing courses. He’s been listed in America’s Premiere Experts and the recipient of “Thought Leader of The Year” award by the National Academy of Best-Selling Authors.

Roger is the chairman and founder of The Winner’s Circle, the largest and most respected invitation-only Mastermind Forum for top level business leaders and highly successful entrepreneurs.

Roger is also an active Real Estate Investor and presented his own seminars all over the US on the topic of Real Estate investing – “How to buy houses with no money and credit.” He and his partner owned over 500 investment properties in the greater Tampa Bay area.

In 1990, he joined the team of world-renowned author and motivational speaker Anthony Robbins and became the number one speaker & trainer. He has delivered over 4700 professional talks to various corporations, non-profit organizations and educational institutions in North America, Europe and Asia. Read More→

Mon, November 24th @ 6:30 PM in Marietta, GA
Atlanta REIA West
How To Buy Yourself A New Home For The Holidays
with Leslie Mathis

Leslie MathisCome join us at the Atlanta REIA Wild Wild West Group on Monday, November 24th at 6:30PM at Cherokee Cattle Company located at 2710 Canton Rd in Marietta, where Leslie Mathis will be discussing buying homes during the holidays! While everyone else is out spending money and running up credit cards during the holidays, Leslie wants YOU to be MAKING CA$H by buying houses! What better gift to give your family and friends (and yourself) than to give the gift of a new home and your financial success! You can buy several houses and be well on your way to achieving your short term financial goals by the end of the year. You can do it! Join us at the meeting and Leslie will show you how to get this done. You’ll be the envy of all your friends with your new home or homes before the New Year! They’ll all be toasting to your success!

You will learn:

  • Where And How To Locate Great Deals
  • What Good Deals Look Like
  • What To Say To Sellers
  • How To Structure Your Offers And Get Them Accepted
  • 3 Ways To Get REALLY “Unstuck” If Frozen With Fear
  • And much, much more.

Please bring 2 canned goods or unwrapped toys to donate to the less fortunate in the area this holiday season. For every 2 canned goods or toy you bring, you get an additional raffle ticket for some GREAT prizes this month!

Late Nite Networking After West Meeting

Cherokee Cattle CompanyAfter the conclusion of the Atlanta REIA WEST Meeting (after 9:00 PM), you are encouraged to hang around and join us for Late Nite Networking also held at Cherokee Cattle Company. So please come eat, drink, network and have fun with like-minded investors and real estate professionals as we hang out late into the night!

*Meeting Agenda
6:30 pm: Networking, Food Ordering & Introductions
7:00 pm: Welcome, Announcements & Upcoming Events
7:25 pm: Haves & Wants
7:45 pm: Feature Presentation with Leslie Mathis
9:00 pm: Drawings for Prizes & Giveaways
9:05 pm: Late Nite Networking

*Please Note: Meeting agenda is subject to change.

About Atlanta REIA West

The Atlanta REIA West Monthly Meeting is an Atlanta REIA Subchapter led by Leslie Mathis that is held on the 4th Monday of each month at 6:30 PM at the Cherokee Cattle Company restaurant located at 2710 Canton Road in Marietta, GA. Atlanta REIA Members can attend for FREE and guests for $10.00. Show up at 6:30 PM to eat and network before the meeting officially starts at 7:00 PM. Buying your own meal is optional but highly recommended and greatly appreciated since the Cherokee Cattle Company allows us to use their meeting room. There will be lots of learning and lots of networking. Bring your deals and your haves, wants and needs to the event.

See Atlanta REIA Events Calendar for More Events!
Tues, Nov 25th @ 6:30 PM in Peachtree City, GA
Peachtree City EPIC Group
Measuring Your Money
Before You Buy

with Barry Garner

Barry GarnerCome join us at the Peachtree City EPIC Group on Tuesday, November 25th at 6:30PM at Green Ginger Asian Fusion Restaurant located at 200 Market Place Connector in Peachtree City, GA where Barry Garner of Solutions Realty Network will be give you a clear understanding of cap rates and returns on investment and how they are calculated and used.

Real estate investment professionals use a number of financial formulas such as cap rates and ROI to make sound investment decisions. Cap Rate is a real estate valuation measure used to compare different real estate investments. Although there are many variations, a cap rate is often calculated as the ratio between the net operating income produced by an asset and the original capital cost (the price paid to buy the asset) or alternatively its current market value. In short, capitalization rates are an indirect measure of how fast an investment will pay for itself.

At the EPIC Meeting you will learn:

  • The difference between cap rate and cash on cash return
  • How to calculate the “cap rate”
  • Should investors use cap rate on small multiplex investments like duplexes and single family homes?
  • Are cap rates different in other markets?
  • All this and much, much more.

Barry Garner is a real estate investor and a Realtor. He has been actively involved in the Atlanta real estate market for the past 5 years and has been a part of over 200 real estate transactions. Barry is an an Acquisitions Agent with Solutions Realty Network, an Atlanta REIA Business Member, and was hired to help grow the investor segment of the Atlanta real estate market. Barry specializes in investor transactions and would be happy to satisfy all of your real estate needs, from a single family rental property to multi-family and commercial properties.

Late Nite Networking After EPIC Meeting

Green Ginger Asian Fusion RestaurantAfter the conclusion of the Atlanta REIA EPIC Meeting (after 9:00 PM), we will be hanging out at the Green Ginger Restaurant for Late Nite Networking also known as the “Meeting After the Meeting”. So please come eat, drink, network and have fun with like-minded investors and real estate professionals as we hang out late into the night!

About Atlanta REIA Epic Group

Chris & Donna LittletonThe EPIC Group, which stands for “Education, Properties, Income and Community”, is a Peachtree City Real Estate Investing Group that is all about buy and hold real estate investing, long term income and building your net worth. The meeting takes place at the Green Ginger Asian Fusion Restaurant located at 200 Market Place Connector in Peachtree City, GA. The host for this event is Donna Littleton, Broker & CEO of Solutions Realty Network, and her husband Chris Littleton. There is no charge for Atlanta REIA Members and currently no charge for non-members as well.

See Atlanta REIA Events Calendar for More Events!
Mon, November 17th @ 6:00 PM in Sandy Springs, GA
The Beginning Investors Group
Your Career in
Real Estate Investing

with Kim Cook, Dorsie Boddiford, Leslie Mathis & Regina Sitterley

All Members & Guests Must RSVP Online to Attend
Members Attend for FREE and Guests for $15 Online or Pay $20 at the Door.
Guests can join Atlanta REIA for Only $100/year and Attend for FREE!

Dorsie Boddiford, Kim Cook, Regina Sitterley & Leslie Mathis

As a new real estate investor, you might not realize it yet, but you will go through three distinct stages of your real estate investing career if you stick it out to the very end.

There is the beginner stage when you need cash now like you need oxygen to breath. Next is the intermediate stage when you start to build your cash flow and residual income and really start to crank things up. And finally there is the final stage when you become an “Ender” and are able to retire and comfortably live off your investments. Each of these stages require different amounts of time, energy, resources and education to master.

Join us at the Beginning Investors Group (BIG) on Monday, November 17th, at 6:00PM at Hudson Grille located at 6317 Roswell Rd in Sandy Springs where you will hear from four dynamic, successful investors in the different stages of their investing career. Dorsie Boddiford, Kim Cook, Regina Sitterley and Leslie Mathis will share with you their history, their goals, and give you insights on how to be successful during each stage. This is your opportunity to hear from investors you don’t normally get to hear from in this format who truly have valuable first hand insights into the different stages of their investing careers. You will be able to ask them questions about the challenges they have faced and have succeeded.

Many new investors may not realize that over the time of their investing life, they will move through various stages of their career. There is the beginning investor (or newbie), the intermediate, and the mature investor. Each of these stages require different mindsets and goals.


Creative Deal Structuring Examples

Rock & RussWe will also have a Creative Deal Structuring interactive session with Russ Hiner and he and Rock Shukoor will be telling you about their upcoming “Ugly House Boot Camp – Part 1: Wholesaling” 3 Day Intensive Training on Nov 21st – 23rd at the Atlanta REIA Office in Buford, GA!

Late Nite Networking After BIG Meeting

Hudson GrilleAfter the conclusion of the Atlanta REIA BIG Meeting (after 9:00 PM), we will be hanging out at the Hudson Grill for Late Nite Networking also known as the “Meeting After the Meeting”. So please come eat, drink, network and have fun with like-minded investors and real estate professionals as we hang out late into the night!

Event Agenda*
6:00 pm: Networking, Haves and Wants & Introductions
7:00 pm: Intro & Announcements
7:15 pm: Creative Deal Structuring with Russ Hiner
7:30 pm: Educational Opportunity with Russ Hiner and Rock Shukoor
7:45 pm: Panel Discussion with Dorsie Boddiford, Kim Cook, Regina Sitterley & Leslie Mathis
9:05 pm: Closing Comments & Late Nite Networking

*Please Note: Meeting agenda is subject to change.

5 Days & 4 Nights in CancunWIN A 4 NIGHT STAY IN CANCUN: All participants who attend the BIG Meeting will entered into a drawing for a chance to win a *Complimentary 5 Day, 4 Night Stay in Cancun! *You must be present at the meeting to win. Giveaway does not include dining, transportation, transfers, taxes, upgrades, etc.

If you become an Atlanta REIA member before midnight, November 16th, you may attend this BIG Meeting at no charge as well as other great Atlanta REIA Meetings, plus get great discounts on other Atlanta REIA Workshops.

About the Beginning Investors Group (BIG)

Beginning Investors GroupBIG is an educational and networking special interest group, hosted by Alan McDonald, and Dustin Griffin for new investors who are just getting started in real estate investing as well as “new again” real estate investors who’ve taken a few years off and are looking to start investing again. The entire purpose of this group is to educate and inspire new investors working on their “first deal” and help new again investors get their “next deal”. Please join us on the 3rd Monday of each month at Hudson Grille located at 6317 Roswell Rd in Sandy Springs.

See Atlanta REIA Events Calendar for More Events!
Tue, November 18th @ Noon in Decatur, GA
The Onsite Renovation Group
Meets Tuesday, November 18th at NOON
2010 Delphine Drive, Decatur, GA 30032

2010 Delphine Drive, Decatur, GA 30032This month, on Tuesday, November 18th at NOON, the Onsite Group will again meet at 2010 Delphine Drive, Decatur, GA 30032 which is a property that Craftbuilt just purchased a few months ago. In August we saw the house before any work had been done to it and heard about the plans to bring it back to life. In September, the sheetrock had all been gutted out and the new walls were framed. The plans include adding a bedroom and bath on the front of the house where the porch was. The kitchen is being moved from the front of the house to where previously there was a bedroom. We also learned in September that a variance was required before we could proceed with the project. There are hurdles and pitfalls in getting projects permitted and every municipality has their own rules. Aaron has extensive experience with permit issues and will answer questions from the group about the permitting process. Our variance has now been approved. Join us and hear what is involved in getting a variance and the reasons for the requirement.

Onsite Renovation GroupThe Onsite Renovation Group, led by Aaron McGinnis of Craftbuilt Properties, is an educational and networking group that focuses on the acquisition, renovation and retail resale (fix and flip) of single family residential homes inside the I-285 perimeter and the in-town neighborhoods. The purpose of this group is to allow both new and experienced rehabbers and investors to meet, network and share knowledge and experience with “hands on” access to real property. The Onsite Renovation Group meets on the 3rd Tuesday of each month at NOON at an active renovation site, build site or rental property which will vary from month to month. There is currently no charge to attend these meeting.


Pretty Houses vs Ugly Houses Webinar

Posted on November 11, 2014 by
Pretty Houses vs Ugly Houses, Which is More Profitable?
A Webinar with Russ Hiner
Wed, November 18th at 8PM ET

Russ HinerOn Tuesday, November 18th at 8PM ET, Russ Hiner, an active investor, coach and mentor in the areas of real estate and creative financing will be hosting a webinar to discuss “Investing in Pretty Houses vs Ugly Houses” and which is right for you. Click here to Register Now!

This Pretty House vs Ugly House Webinar will be a study of why your business model should be centered around the ugly house model or the pretty house model. Or should you split it and invest in both pretty houses and the ugly houses? Get you your questions answered in this exciting analysis of the pretty and ugly houses real estate business.

Register Now!

We look forward to seeing you on the webinar!