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Real Estate Reading Room [Real Estate Investing]
Articles and Advice about Real Estate Investing from Real Estate Reading Room

Attracting Sellers: Getting Them to Call You
by Al Susoeff

There are basically two ways to find potential sellers. I call them Passive Advertising and Active Advertising. Where passive advertising is a “set it and forget it” way to do business; active is just that…an activity. More than that, it is something of a “way of life”; or at least it is for me. At this point in my life I cannot drive through any neighborhood without noticing the vacant houses, or the ones with realtor signs, or those that need work, or those that don’t. It’s just second nature to me. Eventually, if you stay in the game and let me brainwash you a little, you will do the same thing

Active Advertising: Go Out and Get ‘Em Active advertising is exactly the way it sounds; it requires activity. Now, that being said I don’t want you to read the word busy into it just because I said activity. This is a major problem for many new investors, and most of the realtors I have ever met. And, in truth, I don’t think it is their faulty entirely; I think it’s a leftover from growing up in corporate America.

See, in the workplace we are trained to stay busy, and if there is no work at least appear busy. Shoot, Scott Adams, the creator of Dilbert and subsequently Dogbert, made millions of us laugh, (and I’m sure made millions in the process) with all the cartoons he created poking fun at the silliness, stupidity and waste of Corporate America. But as funny as Dilbert is, the truth is we are brain washed to stay busy, many times doing stupid redundant or useless tasks that are better off either being farmed out to somebody else, or just dropped of the calendar completely.

I am going to be a bit different from all the other “gurus” out there at this juncture and tell you NOT to hire out the minutiae. At least not yet. When you have some experience in this business, and you have done maybe ten deals or more, then you can start farming it out. For right now, I want you to do all the tasks, for it is only in doing them that you will learn exactly what you DO NOT need to be doing. Besides, it will give you a good idea of how to explain to a contractor (notice I did not say employee) how to accomplish what you want them to accomplish, as effectively as possible, because if they are spinning their wheels they will not make any money, and if they don’t make money, you will have to find and train more contractors.

Examples of the Active Advertising I use in my Real Estate Business are as follows:

Drive Bys - drive through the neighboorhood yourself; get familiar witht he area. Bird Dogs - an awesome way to get others to work for you and get paid based on their results Cold Calls - from County public data such as lists of foreclosures, divorces, probate, and marriages Passive Advertising: Set It and Forget It Most people are lazy at heart so passive advertising is a great way to go. What I like about passive advertising is that I set it up, typically pay for it once, and then don’t think about it again.

There are drawbacks to passive advertising though. Passive by its very nature will not generate as many good hot leads as will active advertising. Sure, the phone will ring, but more often than not it will be people who are just curious as to what you are doing, or people who really don’t need to sell but definitely want to waste your time telling you why you should buy their home at retail, or even worse, other investors who are wanting to pump you for information.

Bandit signs - Also called Snipe signs in some areas. Billboards - BIG exposurte, but also somewhat pricey Internet - Google ads driving prospects to your website can be a GREAT and CHEAP way to genrate both Buyer's and Seller's lists.


Al Susoeff, Jr. is a Real Estate Investor, Trainer, Coach, Author and Civil Engineer from Central Arkansas. You can read more of his articles at www.ASusoeff.com

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