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Remember the house that we were waiting forever for the Title V (septic) inspection (the same house that the bank’s listing Agent was “insulted” by our low-ball offer)?  Well, we told our Agent that even though they lowered the price to $159k, we were not going to increase our offer by an amount that the bank would accept, so this won’t be a deal.  Interestingly, I noticed today that the listing is now inactive, so I’m curious what the offer turned out to be.

We also looked at a couple more REOs this week.  One was pretty lousy and we’re not intersted.  Another house was a 3 family where 2 of the units were in good shape but the top floor needed a full rehab.  The first 2 floors were basically move-in and the rents there would more than cover the property.  Rehabbing and renting the top floor would be pure gravy, as cash flow goes.  The listing of this house had special stipulations that they were taking offers from owner occupants or municipalities (for Section 8, I suppose?), then after a couple weeks, they would consider investor offers.  The house is listed for $90k, which is a great deal for a 3 family. We’re hoping that we can make an offer on this one.

With the news of Bank of America suspending foreclosures, I think we may need to alter our plans for getting leads bit, since we look at a ton of REOs.  We are going to mail out the rest of our inherited list mailers and will be buying a new list soon.  I decided to buy a new list with more focus of certain zip codes instead of the entire county.  The “whole county” approach didn’t work well since some parts of the county are 45 minutes or more away and the areas are really out of our target farm areas.  I also have realized, though, that I don’t like talking to sellers all that much.  I think I’m good at it, and I should be since I have tons of years of customer service experience, but I just don’t like it. I much prefer vacant/REOs, but there’s a lot of competition for those.  Plus, fielding motivated seller calls during calls during business hours is not possible and my calls go to voicemail.  Maybe I can outsource the call backs or something.  We also don’t do bandit signs.  I know they’re effective but we really don’t have the time or energy to so it…and we also don’t have the time or energy to get slapped with fees, either.  The signs get pulled down pretty fast around here. 

I’ve noticed that the hours/days/weeks slip away and I don’t have enough time to do all that I need to do for REI.  Even with my husband helping out, there are some things I cannot outsource to him, and some things that are more more my specialty (like number crunching the deals).  Thank goodness he’s been a contractor and is still a licensed plumber, so those are the skills I really need from him! 🙂   So, anyway, I think I gotta start using a virtual assitant or two to help us out.  For those of you that are outsourcing things or using virtual assistants, which companies do you recommend (elance.com, odesk.com or others)?  Because I deal with outsourcing at my 9-to-5, I have some very hands-on experience here (and I have some very strong opinions on the topic!), but I’d like some guidance here for REI businesses. 

Oh, and since none of our offers got accepted, I didn’t meet Steph’s 30 day challenge to get a house under contract in September.  Can I get a do-over on the do-over? 🙂

Unfortunately, I have to work Columbus Day (boo!), but to those of you that are not, happy rest of the long weekend! 🙂

Happy Investing!  Happy 10/10/10!

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Georgian Colonial home of the Rev. Benjamin Wa...

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Still no word on our previous REO offer we made at the beginning of September.  The listing Agent did alert us yesterday that the list price would be reduced soon, which is was today ($175k to $159k).  However, there’s still no word on the Title V (septic) inspection, so that’s still in limbo. 

We saw a short sale house last Tuesday. It was listed at a super cheap price of $79k, so that drew in a lot of interest, especially since the ARV is conservatively around $180k.  In fact, when we viewed the house, there were 2 other couples there. It is a cute, older colonial home, 3 beds/1 bath.  The house was in a bit of disarray (think: Hoarders), but not in too bad of shape. It needs windows and such, but mostly cosmetics.  We put in an offer of $84k the night we saw the property.  Then, our Agent emailed us saying they wanted our “highest and best” by Saturday at 4pm.  We put in an offer of $103k and removed the part about the bank paying the closings costs.  We got word last night that we were outbid.  I wonder by how much?? 

We’re still getting bites on our inherited property mailing.  Seems some people held the letter over the summer and waited until now to call.  Hopefully a deal will come out of one of those leads. 

Another exciting bit of news is that I won Shae’s contest.  She posted a survey last week and she picked me to receive a free copy of the new product she’s releasing soon.  I’m so excited.  I cannot wait to get it because I really gotta move forward if I want to be out of my company by next July. 

We just gotta get a deal going soon. I know many people say is that it can take 20 or more offers to get a house under contract…but we’re getting pretty impatient. I am trying so hard not to get discouraged and I don’t want to throw in the towel, I want to and need to keep moving.  I know my husband was really disappointed we didn’t get the short sale house! 

I had such a busy week, especially at work, so I didn’t have as much time to review my PMBP course as I would have liked. I’m hoping to do that later this week, since I’m taking a couple days off from work. 

Happy Investing! 

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Still no word on our latest REO offer. I think at this point, the bank’s listing Agent is trying to string us along.  They still haven’t given us the status on the Title V (septic) testing, which happened over 2 weeks ago.  And he has since posted about 16 photos of the property to the listing  (there was only one lousy photo on the listing previously).  No price drop yet, though. I think he wants us to back out so he can get a full price offer from a homeowner.  Hey, maybe he can…but you’d think they’d consider any offer since it’s been on the market 390+ days. Oh well.

The rental property lead I got from Craigslist won’t work out, I don’t think.  He wants about 50k more than it’s work, IMHO.  I got a couple new calls from our July inherited property mailing (and we still have more letters to send).  So, I hope we can get a deal out of one of those leads.  I’ve been waiting to mail the last batch since those houses are in a more depressed area in our county, about 45 minutes away.  I think if I buy these leads again, I’m going to pick and choose the cities closest to us, rather than the entire county.   With working a full time job and having a family, it’s hard to make appointments as it is, nevermind if the house is 45 minutes away.

And in the meantime, we’re still looking at more REOs. We looked a two on Friday and we’ll look at two more tomorrow.  Something’s gotta happen in the way of a deal soon, right?

I’ve also started writing down goals. I had done this in the past, but not for a very, very long time.  I’m hoping if I do it this time, they goals will come to fruition.  I also made up an index card of some goals and “quick hits” so I can look at them daily.  I also am really trying to make it so I can leave my job by next July.  Maybe if I say it out loud enough times, we can make it happen.

Today I got my PMBP course in the mail. Yahoo!  I cannot wait to check it out.  I was listening to the modules on-line in the meantime.  Speaking of PMBP, have any of you with the course used the “private money getting” website to obtain private lenders?  If so, how is that/did that work out for you?  I know the SEC rules are tricky, so I want to be sure to follow all the guidelines (especially since my full time job has to do with financial services so I cannot cross those lines in any way).  

I also got my Steve Cook Flipping Home Bootcamp CDs (not DVDs) that I won from re-naming Scott Costello’s blog so I want to listen to that course, too!  

That’s it for now.

Happy Investing!

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I got an email today regarding a 1/2 price sale  on the Private Money Blueprint course from Patrick Riddle and Trevor Mauch.  I read the sales page and decided to bite the bullet and purchase the course.  It was an offer I couldn’t refuse! 🙂  Part of the reason,  besides the price, that I purchased it was because when submitting our REO offers lately, we seem to be getting some issues from banks about our pre-approval letters.  I’m hoping that if we have some private lenders set up, it may make the offer process a bit easier (like making all CASH offers).  I know many people are already PMBP members,  so I’d love your feedback on the program, if you wish to comment.  Oh, and one of the reasons they were holding a sale is because Trevor and his wife had a brand new baby girl – so congratulations to them!  I’m a sucker for a cute baby story!

Also, just a quick update on our latest REO offer.  We’ll, it’s still in limbo.  Partly because they’re doing a Title V (septic) inspection on the property. Once we get the details on that, we will adjust our offer accordingly.  Also, it’s pending because we offered way low (like 80k under asking), based on our estimated repairs.  The house has been on the market over a year.  The bank’s Agent told our Agent that the bank wouldn’t consider our offer and that we should make a “reasonable” offer.  Really?  You’ve been sitting on this house more than a year…isn’t any offer at this point reasonable?  He gave our Agent this song and dance about the bank needs to satisfy their stockholders and such.  Also, he told her that we were just wasting her time and that because we had a pre-approval from a hard money lender, that these types of buyers “never work out.”  What a jerk.  I am sure he’s been burned by other investors before but come on…he doesn’t know me or my husband or what our situation is. He doesn’t know that we’ve done a couple rehabs in the past (our own residences), that my husband has been a contractor, etc.  He can go pound sand, as my dad used to say!  So, who knows if that deal will work out either.

I’m still getting some nibbles from our inherited property mailing, too. The guy I mentioned last time basically wanted retail price, so I told him he’s best to re-list the house with the new Agent.  Another guy called me from out of state, so if he’s the sole owner of a house he inherited here in New England, maybe that’d be a deal.  I also got a lead (via Craigslist) from a landlord on a rental property in town that’s in excellent condition.  He’s asking more than what it’s worth (in my opinion), but I still need to research more. Maybe he’ll do owner financing, who knows?

That’s it for now.

Happy Investing!

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Well, we had another busy week.  We looked at a few new REOs this week.  And we made an offer on one, on Friday the 13th.  That’s a good omen, right?  I guess for abbreviations sake, I’ll call it the F13 house!

The house is a 3 bed/2 bath raised ranch,  built in 1974.  It’s in a desirable area  for families with good schools.  It needs mostly cosmetic work, so we can do a lot of the work ourselves.  We made the offer contingent to an inspection and a Title V (that’s a septic inspection in MA) inspection.  If the septic doesn’t pass, we’ll lower our offer by the amount of repair (which around here can cost $20-$30k for this size house).  The price was just lowered, but it’s been listed since June.  We were told that there were no offers yet, but a lot of interest since the price was lowered.  We offered quite a bit lower than asking, but when I looked at the public records, our offer is right about where the mortgage balance was at the time of foreclosure. Although I realize this in no way means the bank will accept our offer.

When we submitted the offer through our Realtor on Friday, she called and us soon after to let us know the bank’s asset manager didn’t like our hard money pre-approval letter, which didn’t state how much we’d need to put down with the lender.  I tried to get an updated letter sent to me on Friday, but it was too late in the day to get it.  I hope I can get that all situated on Monday.  I think it’s ridiculous they wouldn’t take my offer without it, since we provided the earnest money deposit, and you know they’re going to counter anyway.  The lender is not BoA, which is know can be quite difficult to deal with.  Oh well, keep you posted.

BTW, I really need to get some private money lined up, since I think this would make our offer submissions go a lot easier.

I’m still getting calls from our mailings, even though we haven’t sent all the letters. I have to follow-up with a couple of people today.  We decided to send the final batch of letters  just before our daughter goes back to school, since it’s been a little bit of a hassle bringing her to viewings.  It’s fine for REOs but I would  not want to bring her to showing at a private seller’s home.  Although she’s very cute, she likes to hold the flashlight and even writes notes in her notebook as we’re looking at the houses! 🙂

Happy Investing!

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Bad news – we found out there were 6 CASH offers on the cat pee house (CPH, as we were calling it).  I think these offers came in just after the price was lowered on Friday.  So, we didn’t bother making an offer.  That totally sucked, we were kind of hoping to get that one to rehab. I’ll still keep it on my list to see if all the offers fall through…although with that many offers on the table, that is highly unlikely.

The other colonial house we looked at over the weekend was awesome, but we found out there was an easement for a  right of way on the side of the house, which would have put a road right in the middle of this house and the one next door, and prevented a garage from being added.  We’re bummed about that, too.  I’m so frustrated but I’m trying to not let it get me down.

We’re still getting calls from our direct mail campaign.  A couple motivated sellers, but no one is motivated enough yet.  I don’t understand how in this lousy market, people are holding out for prices higher than what they’re worth.  Especially with these inherited properties, since it’s not like they’re upside down in equity, since they inherited from (usually) a parent.  I’ve checked out many of these houses (that we’ve received calls on) in the public records and most have $0 mortgage balances.

We gotta dig deep and get a house under contract soon.  Especially since I made that my goal in Steph‘s 30 day challenge.  And my job is driving me crazy.  I gotta get outta there and do this REI stuff full time.  Having a J-O-B is really limiting my investing time, although the paycheck helps! 🙂

Happy Investing!

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I wanted to give a quick update on our inherited property mailing list results so far.  We still haven’t had the chance to mail all the letters yet (we’ve mailed almost 200), and we’ve already received about 11 calls so far.  A couple people left messages saying they weren’t interested in selling, but were very nice about it.  The other new calls received were about a couple properties already listed in the MLS and a couple new (unlisted) leads.  The hard of hearing guy, and his son, called back again, too!  We’re going to follow-up on these this week (I’ve already left messages for some to call me back).  I’ve been very happy with the number of calls received from this list.  Maybe it was the fact we hand-addressed and stamped the envelopes?   We really hope the mailing results in a deal…and if it doesn’t this time around, maybe it will when we re-mail to this list in a few months.

We also looked at a few REOs on Monday…looking for some rehab/wholesale deals.  However, the rest of the week was very unproductive REI-wise, since we had relatives staying with us to attend a funeral.  So, we gotta get back into the swing of things starting tomorrow.

Happy Investing!

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