March 2015

Two weeks ago I called six different contractors to come take a look at a small repair job on my personal house.

Every single one went to an answering machine or voicemail. Okay, understandable. They are busy working. I’ll leave a message.

In total, four of them called me back, and I scheduled four different appointments with each of them to get me an estimate. Of the four appointments, two of them never showed up.

Of the two remaining, one said he didn’t know how to do the job. The other said he would call me back with an estimate in 24 hours. It’s been a week — and now his phone is disconnected.

And I still need the repair job done.

For anyone who’s ever tried to hire a contractor or handyman for their home or business, this story probably sounds a bit familiar. It’s difficult! Of the 100+ guests we’ve had on theBiggerPockets Podcast, I would rate “finding a contractor” as the number one difficulty mentioned by investors.

Why is it so tough?

Well, there are two primary reasons I see:

(click to continue reading on BiggerPockets)

The Real Estate Market: How to Analyze and Predict Cycles

Is there a way to know what the real estate market is going to do?

Nope, sorry.

I know you came to this post to try and figure out how to know where the real estate market is headed, but unless you are some kind of prophet or psychic, there is no way to know the future of the real estate market.


While you may not be able to know the future, there are numerous ways we can analyze the past and make some educated assumptions as to the future of the real estate market. This article looks both the definition of the real estate market as well as the leading indicators that drive the real estate market up and down.

What is the Real Estate Market?

Perhaps before we dive into the specifics on analyzing and predicting the market, we should get on the same page as to what we are talking about when we use the phrase “The Real Estate Market.”

The real estate market is a phrase used to describe the overall economic state of real estate, based largely on supply and demand. 

However, the very phrase “real estate market” is a bit more complicated that you might think from first hearing it. While we are referring to the general economic condition of real estate, the devil is in the details.

  • Are we talking about the real estate market in a specific location? Because, as I’m sure you know, real estate prices and demand can differ wildly in different areas. Just ask someone shopping for a home in Southern California versus Iowa.
  • Are we talking about the real estate market within a specific niche, like single family homes, apartments, office buildings, or hotels? After all, it might be a great time to buy a single family home, but it might be impossible to find a great deal on an apartment complex or to build a new commercial office building.
  • Are we talking about the real estate market for a certain type of real estate user? After all, the market could appear very different for someone who is looking to rent a property versus someone looking to buy a property. A buyer might think it’s a great market, while a seller might think it’s terrible.

Therefore, when economists look at “the real estate market,” they could be referring to all these factors at once, but it is likely they are focusing on one aspect or a summary of the whole. Therefore, next time you hear the phrase “the strength of the real estate market” or something similar, ask yourself “what are they really talking about?” It would be silly to say “the real estate market is strong” without any additional qualifiers.

  • Where is it strong?
  • For whom is it strong?
  • For what kind of real estate is it strong?

That said, the real estate market, as mentioned in the definition above, is based on the supply and demand of real estate, so no matter what niche and what location and to what user, there are patterns that we can analyze — and hopefully predict within that niche.

These patterns form what you’ve likely heard before: the real estate cycle.

(Click to read on BiggerPockets…)

How to Find Real Estate Deals

We’ve got a major problem…

Real estate is becoming cool again. 

That’s right. It’s becoming cool. Chill. Awesome. Hip. Trendy. Fonzie-like.

People are flocking to real estate once again to build wealth, and while I’m excited to see so many more people choosing to take their financial future into their own hands, I also recognize that this is a problem.

The more people want to buy real estate, the harder it is to find deals. It’s simple supply and demand.

Therefore, the way investors found deals in the past is changing rapidly. Unlike the previous seven years, today trying to find a deal on the MLS with a real estate agent is almost impossible. (The MLS is the collection of all houses in an area listed for sale through a licensed real estate agent.)

Instead, savvy investors are changing their acquisition methods to find great deals. After all, if you want what no one else can get, you’ll have to do what no one else will do to get it. 

Are you ready to do what it takes to find a great deal?

If so, here are seven clever strategies you can use to find a great deal!

(click to continue reading on BiggerPockets)

Turnkey Real Estate Investing: Can You Really Have Your Cake and Eat It Too?

How would you like to have your cake and eat it too?

No, I’m not talking about baking. I’m talking about real estate investing!

You see, many people want to invest in real estate, but they also want to live in a great location where rental properties don’t make a lot of sense. They want to enjoy the sun, the city, the lights — but they want cash flow from rental properties that they’ll never find in their backyard. They want to own rental properties but don’t want to actively manage anything. They want their cake… and they want to eat it, too.

Is this possible?

Well, in recent years a number of “turnkey” providers have emerged that claim they can help investors do just this. But is turnkey real estate investing really all it’s cracked up to be?

Let’s find out.

What is Turnkey Real Estate Investing?

(click to continue reading on BiggerPockets)

My Seahawks just lost the Super Bowl.


Although the game was intense, engaging, and filled with an appropriate level of humorous million dollar commercials – it’s still painful to watch my favorite team come so far and lose in the last moments.

Hanging my head low in defeat on my quiet drive home, I did some deep soul searching to help the grieving process and had an epiphany.

Football is great; but business is better.

Now, before you get your undies in a bundle, hang with me while I explain.

1.) In Business, I Make The Calls

With just seconds left in the game, and down by just three points, the Seahawks had an almost guaranteed win. They had just 1 yard to go and four attempts to make it there – and this is what #24 running back Marshawn Lynch is built for. (That, and eating Skittles and avoiding the press.)

And instead the call was given for Quarterback Russel Wilson to throw the ball to Ricardo Lockette and, in a horrific moment Seahawks’ fans will never forget, Malcolm Butler, a rookie cornerback for The Patriots, intercepted the ball and like that: the game was lost.

All this because of a stupid decision by someone on the Seahawks coaching team.

I had absolutely NO control over the outcome of this game. I was purely a spectator and no level of shouting at the TV was going to change anything.

Perhaps the reason I love the “sport of business,” as Mark Cuban calls it, is because in this game, I make the calls. I decide the outcome of the game. I am responsible for my success and my defeat.

Like the Seahawks, I won’t always win every fight… but at least the battle is mine.

If my rental properties aren’t performing right, it’s my fault and I have the power to fix it.

If I am short on funds for my next big project, I get to determine the path to raise more capital.

If isn’t growing at the speed I want, I can make the changes necessary to find success.

Because I make the calls.

(okay… on BiggerPockets Josh makes the calls. But you get the point! :) )

(Click to read on BiggerPockets…)

Let me tell you what bothers me.

Crappy wholesalers.

They are everywhere! They send over terrible deals, add huge mark-ups, and then try to pretend it’s something great. But the fact is: they have no idea what they are doing.

At BiggerPockets, we wanted to change that.

It’s been almost a year in the making… and we’re super excited to finally announce…. today we are officially launching the much-anticipated “BiggerPockets Wholesaling Calculator” designed to help wholesalers analyze deals, estimate rehab costs, determine their maximum allowable offer, and create incredibly detailed reports to give to potential cash buyers!

Trying to find the ideal “maximum allowable offer” is difficult. There are so many factors to consider and analyze and the truth is: most wholesalers take the easy way out and simply make a wild guess on a deal’s worth.

And most of the time they are wrong and end up looking like idiots to their cash buyers.

Not anymore.

(Click to read on BiggerPockets…)