Buying a property from the area where you live is not recommended for the new investor. That’s why we’ve made buying our first real estate investment out of state our top priority! why? Because certain conditions have presented themselves that allow us to buy and sell vacant lots away from many regional states. We paid cash for this property below the market call in the area. Additionally, it made sense to buy because it matched our investment criteria and was a very small deal for us. Why have we italicized the word “we” so far? Since this is a topic that we believe is not on this site, however we have learned a lot from the experience and would like to share some simple lessons learned in this particular article as well as future articles. Ultimately, we do not recommend people new to real estate investing and buy property several hundred miles away!
Information is critical to good, sound real estate investing. No, good information is essential to real estate investing. No, in fact, gathering as much information as you, the buyer, about the property you are considering buying is critical to increasing your chances of success in real estate investing! Phew! Okay, so we’ve got it straight. So how do you get information and how do you get quality information? Call a few realtors and ask them about the area? If you need a haircut, it’s like asking a barber. How about calling a local chamber of commerce? A local chamber of commerce is a good starting point, but it depends on who you talk to. For example, you can talk to someone who is trying to market the area for local business or improvement. Given your investment goals, you may or may not receive accurate information or accurate information.
Talk to multiple sources. Make lots of phone calls to different businesses. A reputable developer in the area can be a good resource for connecting you with other phone numbers and possibly some of their personal contacts.
Check everything! Verify every statement a seller makes. If you can get someone to take pictures of the property you are buying, that is very important. If you’re buying a vacant lot, you’ll want to know if the lot is buildable, in flood zones, zoning, utilities, drainage, and local neighborhoods and subdivisions.
When contacting municipalities, be sure to call back several times if you don’t get a cooperative person on the phone. For some reason, people down south are better. They will spend a lot of time on the phone with you and be patient with you as you struggle to put two and two together. Don’t be afraid to let information pop into your head while you’re on the phone, and ask the person on the line to wait while you write things down.
It pays to be prepared for phone calls. Write the questions. Getting a questionnaire costs money. If you use ours, feel free to make it your own. If you don’t understand the terminology, you can find us on any real estate investment website or online. Record all your phone contacts and write down the names and extensions of helpful people.
Another good source of information would be the local paper of that area. There you will find classified and legal ads that can give you an idea of how business is growing and where and when auctions are held. As you complete more areas to keep track of than simply reading the paper, make sure you keep track! Many newspapers have websites, but they don’t have the same information as the actual paper.
Additionally, local real estate investors can check out clubs and organizations as well. Here you can access local forums online where you can chat and post questions, perhaps make connections and seek more information. Local real estate investment clubs can help you put your feet up with other investors. This is important because you can learn what to do and what not to do.
The importance of documenting everything you do cannot be stressed enough. Make sure you write it down somewhere so you can refer back to your notes on paper instead of in your head. Hopefully, what you’ve written, talked about, and read will enable you to make wise decisions as you evaluate your investment strategy for suburban real estate.