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Welcome back to another episode of the Discount Property Investor Podcast. David Dodge is back with Alan Biel on the show. In today’s episode, they are going to focus on acquisitions: the fundamentals, specifically the acquisition process. Invest in education, invest in yourself and surround yourself with the right people. Check this episode to learn more about real estate!
Things that will cover in this episode:
- What’s the first thing that comes to your mind when you hear about acquisitions?
- Acquisitions and sales
- Acquisition process
You can send message to Alan Biel through email:
Rei Game Changers Facebook Group:
David: All right guys, welcome back to the discount property investor podcast. This is your host David Dodge and I was so fortunate to get Alan Biel back on the show and literally the last episode we did was with Alan, so if you haven’t already listened to that episode, go check it out episode 255 Alan Biel from REI Game Changers and we talked all things real estate investing. We really kinda narrowed into the KPI’s and how you’re able to track those things but you know, we weren’t able to make the episode go on so again, I wanted to bring Alan back. Alan’s here with me again today, this is now episode 256, but today we’re gonna really focus on the acquisitions part of this business. We did the KPI’s last time which is a higher level, you know it’s really for those that are really wanting to track those numbers and you know, determine their ROI or return on time invested, the ROTI as well. Again, go listen to that episode if you haven’t already but today, we’re gonna take a step back and we’re gonna talk a little bit more about you know, the fundamentals, right? So, and specifically the acquisition process. Guys, the acquisition process is sales, you know? That’s really what this is and I think Alan kinda brought this to my attention last time too that you know, I kinda grouped this business into like 80% marketing, 20% everything else but he was- you know, he brought to light that like yeah, you’re doing a lot of marketing but really what we determine or what we like to call marketing is really sales, a lot of it is, right? And you know, sales is everything, you know. People are constantly selling and in this business, the real estate investing business, sales is important, right? Especially if you are wholesaling because wholesaling is selling people to work with you to get those properties under contract but then it’s also turning around and selling people on your deals. So, Alan again, thank you so much for coming back. It’s so great to have you. How are you doing today? What’s going on?
Alan: Man I’m good since we last talked. I’ve been thinking a lot about what we talked about as well and I am excited to hopefully kinda put a bowtie on some of this stuff when it comes to marketing and acquisitions and sales stuff that you’re talking about so super pumped. I know we were just talking about this, you got a bunch of deals closing right now and we got a bunch of deals closing right now in our businesses and really exciting that those things can happen largely without us, so a lot of excitement there and exciting stuff going on at REI Game Changers as well.
David: Nice. Yeah, isn’t it great having a team?
David: Man I highly encourage anybody and everybody that’s new to this business to you know, just find somebody to partner with, find somebody to hire if anything, right? If you don’t want a partner, I get it but I wouldn’t want to do this by myself, I’m gonna be straightforward. I did it in the beginning by myself for several months but then I hired a virtual assistant and I brought- and I basically built a team out of that. Now, I have a partner, just one partner and multiple virtual assistants and Alan I know you’re the same way.
Alan: Same way. We’re definitely big believers in hiring people especially if we can hire specialized people that are focused on their job because guys like you and I David can tend to be kinda all over the place and have our hands on a lot of different things so if we can build out systems and have- so I always talk about the people and the processes. So if we can have the right people and then have the right processes to where people can specialized focus on what their job is then yes, that’s something that we highly recommend.
David: I love it, I love it. Well guys again, check out that most recent episode, episode 255. We talked all things KPI’s, it was very cool. Today, I want to focus on the acquisitions, right? I want to focus on the sales side of the business and Alan’s a pro at this, he knows this like the back of his hand and I know he didn’t want me to brag but he told me before the show that he’s got 5 deals closing today. I gotta highlight that just because you know, that requires sales to do a single deal let alone having 5 closed. So if that alone doesn’t tell you that he is a master at sales then you’re crazy. I mean this guy knows what he’s doing, so let’s jump on in, right? So when we’re talking about acquisitions, what’s the first thing that comes to mind Alan?
Alan: Wow, that’s an open-ended question.
David: I know.
Alan: So there’s a couple different ways we could do, we can have some fun with this if you want to. I know that you’ve got clients, you told me you have clients and they’ve got questions about acquisitions. We’re the same way so we could do a couple different things if you want to, just to throw this out here. I’m kind of putting you on the spot here but we can talk as if- you can act like a client and I can act like the coach of the client and we can talk through deals. We could also, if you’re up for it, we can act like- we could do a little role play. I don’t know if people were ever into that kind of thing but we can role play.
David: I love doing the role play. We don’t do any role play on this podcast so let’s do some role playing as well man. I like that idea, I really do.
David: Though I have a couple students right now that you know, I think sales is really their biggest struggle so I think this is gonna be very helpful for not only them but for me as well too so I can better help and assist them, right? But you know, once you get somebody into the marketing, you change their mindset that you know, this is a marketing business first and foremost and that you got to do that marketing, that only gets you so far. That gets your phone ringing basically, right? That’s what we talked about last time is like the end goal is to get somebody on the phone. Well, that gets your phone ringing but if you don’t know how to talk to people, you’re not comfortable setting appointments or making offers, I mean that’s basically sales right there, right? You’re gonna struggle in this business, right? So I like all of the above, you know, role playing and also you know, just talking about some of the stuff that is working for you.
David: You know I don’t look at myself as being a sales expert or a sales guru or anything along those lines. My approach of sales is just make a friend, but I know I oversimplify that because even that has you know, some definitely some things that you would want to dive into so Alan, let’s do it bro. Whatever you want to do, I’m ready.
Alan: Well, let’s start big picture for people- and then what I’ll do, I’ll start big picture and then I’ll ask you what are the most common things that you hear from your people as far- like your acquisitions people that work kind of alongside you? What are the- from your clients, what are you hearing? Maybe I’ll- I can probably pull some cuz we get questions every week from our clients and I know you know this Dave, we’re big believers in coaching. I think there’s a need for it and there’s not a ton of people that are willing to coach people on how to scale their real estate businesses.
David: Yeah, you guys have a very cool niche with that, right? Because in our coaching business, it’s you know, hey come learn how to do your first deal or you know, do more deals, right? Whereas you guys are like I don’t really want to deal with the newbies per se as much, right? It’s more like-
Alan: We don’t.
David: You don’t. I love it, you know, you’re frank about it, you’re forward about it. You’re like you know what? Let Dave and his team handle that or help those people, what we want to do and we wanna focus, I’m talking about Alan’s business here guys, REI Game Changers, is take people to that next level. It’s you know, turn them into 6 or even 7 figure business, you know, get those deals coming in consistently, so it’s really cool. I really love that so you are the perfect person today to talk acquisitions and sales. Let’s do it.
Alan: Yeah, so let’s go big- so big picture, I think you’re right David. I think that if- you gotta make a friend so let’s- so first let’s start with the mindset stuff. There’s several different directions we can go with this but big picture, 40 thousand foot view, here’s the deal with acquisitions: we’re trying to buy peoples houses at a discount, love the name of your show by the way cuz that’s what we’re doing.
David: Thank you. I mean that’s it man. If we can’t get a discount, we’re not interested so we are the discount property investors.
Alan: We’re investors.
David: That’s it. Every investor in theory should be a discount property investor if they know what they’re doing, right? They gotta buy at a discount, love that.
Alan: Every- and it’s, last time I checked, and this is where mindset comes in. I think it’s every business, period.
David: Period, right.
Alan: Every business, what we’re trying to do with products and services is sell something for more than what we bought it for or make more than what we’re spending on our people and our processes.
David: And our time and our process and yup, and our people. Absolutely.
Alan: Our people and our processes cost x amount so therefore I need to sell it for y amount or whatever. So that’s kind of how business works so for anybody that thinks that’s weird, and by the way for anybody that thinks that wholesaling’s a little bit weird, next time you walk into Walmart and realize that for the last 20 or 30 years, they- I don’t know if this is like breaking news or not but they stopped buying materials a long time ago. They don’t pay for products.
David: They don’t pay for anything, everything on the shelf is lent to them.
Alan: It’s rented.
David: It’s rented basically.
Alan: They own the space that- but they don’t- here’s the thing, they don’t even have to pay for the rent David. So the manufacturers pay for all of that, they own the shelf space. Walmart owns the real estate and the shelf space and the other companies but like spend- but the whole bill for the whole-
David: They pay to have it on the shelf.
David: And then Walmart’s not even buying it until it’s sold and usually that’s 60 or 90 days later, even beyond that. It’s crazy.
Alan: Net 60, net 9- crazy, right?
David: Crazy, right.
Alan: So what it is and what we know, everybody and anybody that’s studied Walmart decades and decades and decades ago was Sam Walton was thinking was you know, he’s a distri- it started as a distribution company and then he’s like wait if we can cut one distribution step out of the chain of distribution, we can make a fortune. If we can be efficient and remove one step and we’ll insert ourselves there, okay so what they evolved into, what it seems to me like that they evolved into is you have to do a lot distribution but they’re basically wholesaling, are they not?
David: They are, that’s exactly what they’re doing. I mean I don’t think- I don’t know of another phrase or term to describe it, right? They’re getting it low and they’re selling it high, they’re not even paying for it which is how I define wholesale, being able to flip it without actually having to buy it.
David: I refer to something that I have to buy and then resell as a flip, not as a wholesale. Wholesale in my opinion is little to no money and really when I say that, I think we talked about this last time, you know, most of that, 90% of that little to no money in the event that there is, is in the marketing anyway or the you know, or the sales side of it, right? But the marketing side of it, the flipping of it typically is under a hundred bucks.
Alan: Right. All right so mindset-wise, we’ve got every business does what we do, they’re just doing it in a different genre or different industry and so what we’re trying to do here is do we have the mindset of a business person, of a salesperson, of a leader and so what leaders are doing is we’re- so what’s the definition of leadership? John Maxwell said this a long time ago, if you think you’re leading people but nobody’s following you, you’re not leading, you’re just going for a walk.
David: Hahaha, man I love that. That’s a great quote.
Alan: Yeah, so what we’re working on doing here as business people and as leaders is exactly what you said. We need to sell ourselves and we can call it whatever we want, it’s not technically sales, kind of like how we talked last week about how marketing is not technically marketing, what we’re calling marketing is actually lead generation and then the only part about it that’s marketing is the numbers and the data and the big picture decisions and setting a budget and tracking ROI and all that stuff. Strategy is marketing but a lot of what people are calling marketing is actually lead generation, right? They’re doing cold calling, they’re doing texting, whatever. The messaging that’s on the postcards, the messaging that’s on your website, none of that is marketing in my humble opinion. It’s- we’ll call it sales for todays purposes but what we’re really trying to do is to put ourselves out there to where they know, hey I’m looking for my next house to buy and if you had any interest in selling whatsoever, you should talk to me, and then the endgame, the end goal of that being to get them into a conversation like you said, preferably on the phone and then possibly in-person. Okay, so with that being kind of the 40 thousand foot view, what we need to all understand is how comfortable are you dealing with people? Because I don’t know about you David, we come across people every once in a while they’re like oh I need to develop my sales skills, does that mean I need to get around more people? Then we look at their personality profile and we’re like you’re right, you don’t need to be getting around more people so you might need to do what you said David, partner with somebody, hire somebody who is a people person because this involves being eyeball-to-eyeball, belly-to-belly, or you could do it over the phone. If you close deals over the phone, you don’t have to be as personable as we are David. I mean you’re the guy that’s willing to hop in the car and go speak at an event and you’re like get fired up about that.
David: I am and it comes natural to me and I often discount the fact that other people struggle with that so I’m really happy that you bring that up because yeah, I think that’s a great place to start. How comfortable are you dealing with people? And if you’re not really that comfortable, then you either need to hire somebody or partner with somebody that is because guys, wholesaling, fixing and flipping, being a landlord, this is a people business. Real estate’s the product but we’re buying and selling it to and from people, right? So you got to be comfortable dealing with people and if you’re not, then you know, learn how to do that or find somebody who can. Absolutely, 100%.
Alan: Yes, or develop your skills to where they’re good enough, to where you can make your 10, 20-
David: And you’re comfortable at that point. Right.
David: 50, 100 grand and you’ll be comfortable enough the first- you know we had a client, what was it? I think it was on a coaching call yesterday and they were like yeah, we have our next deals closing tomorrow is 35 grand and we were like oh my goodness, like you guys just signed up with us a few weeks ago and y’all were stressed cuz you didn’t have enough leads coming in, then the next week we got all that figured out and you got leads coming in like crazy and you were stressed because you weren’t getting on enough appointments and then we figured that out and now you’re on like week 3 or week 4, you’ve already closed a couple deals more than what you were doing before, like in addition to what you were doing when you came on with us which they had told us that and you just landed another $35,000 deal and you know, which helps so we’re like what happened? And as we’re talking about it, we realize they’re more comfortable getting on appointments and they’re more comfortable talking to people when they’re seeing the results, so maybe we just need to get enough momentum going. It’s like okay, you didn’t think you were a people person, you didn’t think you were going to love being on all those appointments but when the checks start coming in, it’s amazing how you love it and if you do that long enough, sometimes what people find is you’ll look back and you’ll be like I can’t believe I used to think I wasn’t a people person, I was totally a people person, maybe I didn’t have the belief, maybe I didn’t have the right tools in my toolbox here-
Alan: -to close deals to where my natural self could come out and be enthusiastic about who I really am and what I’m doing and what I’m offering. Maybe it’s a belief in ourself issue, maybe it’s a belief in our processes that they’re going to work and what I’m being taught is going to work, maybe it’s that- cuz you know David, that can affect who people naturally are. It’s like okay, who you naturally are is not even coming out because you don’t have the belief.
David: Yeah. Oh man, that’s such a good point. You got to believe in yourself, absolutely. Yeah, absolutely.
Alan: And in what we’re doing. I mean how many times- you work with newer people, how many times that they won’t usually admit it to you at first but later on they’ll say man I didn’t even think- I thought this was a scam, like I thought- I can’t believe this is even real and it is crazy that it’s even real. It’s like how is this even possible that the way that all this works, and we joke about it. I don’t know if you guys do this but we joke about this sometimes like it’s kind of weird that we can send out a bunch of mail or stick a website up or send out a bunch of text messages or whatever, get in conversations with people.
David: Attract the right people, yeah.
Alan: Attract the right people somehow miraculously, sign a contract to buy their house-
David: And then sell that piece of paper.
Alan: Sell that paper to somebody who wants it you know, a little bit more than what we paid for it.
David: Sometimes a lot.
Alan: Sometimes a lot more and then a week or a month later-
David: Get paid and get paid a lot of money.
Alan: Money gets direct deposited and by the way, I don’t know how other people do this. We don’t do checks, we’ve never done it. I’ve been in real estate a long time, I have never done checks. Actually I shouldn’t say that, my first ever deal, we walked away from the title company with a check for 33 grand. It was the first house we ever flipped in 2005, 2006 and I remember the check and I remember just looking at it like oh my goodness.
David: Damn, that’s a whole years salary for most people.
Alan: That was a years salary for me at that time.
David: Yeah, back then I was probably doing the same.
Alan: That’s what changed everything. I remember telling my sister at that time, I’m like yeah- I still have the email somewhere from 2006 and I was like yeah so I started a real estate company, there was no real estate company David like that’s how much of a visionary I am.
Alan: Yeah, so I started a real estate company, she’s like what do you mean? I’m like yeah I’m flipping houses. I wasn’t flipping houses, I flipped a house.
Alan: Anyway, I did do that once but like the money usually is just direct deposited from the title company and so I’m not the guy out there that’s posting pictures of my checks sitting on top of my Lamborghinis yet. I haven’t started doing that yet.
David: That’s right.
Alan: So anyway, isn’t that a miracle? And the money shows up in your bank account so like all that happens and it works and then people later on will tell you, yeah I still kind of can’t believe that this even all works because it is kind of crazy, so there’s a belief in ourself and there’s a belief that this actually works, that there’s thousands of people that make money doing this like everyday all over the place. Sometimes that belief thing- so again, we’re at the 40 thousand foot view like do we have that? And have we read the books? Have we listened to the audios? Have we surrounded ourselves with people to where we got enough good stuff going on in between our ears that we can even have a chance to be great at this or even good enough at this to make 50 hundred, couple hundred thousand dollars. We can start there, right?
Alan: Okay, then what? So now we got to get into actually closing deals. So leads come in and well let’s just, you got to pick an example. Are we gonna- what do you want to talk? An inbound lead like from direct mail? Or do we have to talk cold call?
David: It doesn’t matter, whatever. Yeah, whatever. It’s all the same to me.
David: The leads come in.
Alan: So lead comes in, we got to get- and this is where David’s 100% right, what he’s been telling you guys, like you got to get on the phone with people. So sometimes what we do is we’ll back up a little bit and we’ll be like however the lead source came in, we want to make sure that that lead source makes it clear whether it’s a cold caller or whether it’s a website or whatever, a lead intake person, make it clear that they’re- the person’s going to be receiving a phone call and from who. From who. So instead of being like alright, well thanks for the info, click, like no, it’s like all right here’s what I’m going to do, I’m going to kick this over to David, and remember, I’m a believer in typing this out like I want my VA to say it this way cuz it gives us the best chance moving forward, so this is just personal preference like hey, I’m going to kick this over to- or I’m going to get this information over to David, I’ll have him reach out to you. You guys are really going to hit it off I think, you know we’ll see, but he’s going to call you. He usually calls between you know, he’ll usually call, you know I’ve noticed around like between 3 and 4 o’clock, how does that work? Okay cool. He’s going to call, in fact, in fact Mr. Seller, do you have a pencil and a sheet of paper?
David: Yes I do.
Alan: Okay, so I’m going to tell you- I don’t know if David’s even okay with this. I’m actually going to give you his cell phone number that he’s going to be calling you from, so here it is.
David: Love that.
Alan: Guys, what’s wrong with having your VA say that? What’s wrong with-
David: Nothing, nothing’s wrong with that and I love it cuz you’re going the extra step but also hopefully they’ll save that number. That way when they call, they’re going to answer, you know, but not only that if they- if you aren’t able to connect with them, you know maybe a week or two or even three goes by and then they call you, right? That’s the end goal from the marketing, right? Is to get them on the phone. That’s really when the sales process starts and I know you’re thinking, well you’re wrong David, it starts in the message on the marketing, you’re right, you’re absolutely right, right? But the human to human sales process starts at that point right then and there.
David: So having the VA or this could be an employee, this could be a team member, could be a partner, set the stage is how I’m kinda describe- or how I’m interpreting it. Set the stage that somebody else’s is gonna be calling you and this is the number they’re going to be calling you from and they’re probably going to call you at this time. I love that.
Alan: Yeah, and how does that work for you? So does that- how does that sound?
David: Hey that sounds great and honestly I don’t typically answer numbers, you know, I’m role-playing here. I don’t typically answer numbers from people that I don’t know so I’ll save it right now and I’m looking forward to you know, Alan calling me. This is great.
Alan: Yeah, and I’m the same way Mr. Seller, I don’t answer those calls either so I do want to make sure, so did you write that number down? You could even save it in your phone, in fact you know if you can, save it in your phone but he will be calling you probably this afternoon right around 3 o’clock. So how does that- does that work well for you?
David: Hey, I’m free at 3, that’s perfect. I can’t wait for Alan to call. I’m going to save the number in my phone right now and I’m looking forward to it.
Alan: Awesome, perfect. So guys if you can, like I’m always looking at efficiencies and I’m always looking at effectiveness and so as an acquisi- as a salesperson, can I put all the odds in my favor? I’m not just looking for leads coming in, and I also- guys, as a business owner, as the boss of a company, I don’t- like as the owner. I don’t want to be the guy that’s like well you’re getting the leads, what’s the deal? When the funnels broken or when the funnel could be better like what have I done as the leader? What have I done as the business owner to make the funnel as good as we can and look, nobody’s funnel is perfect and you don’t have to geek out on this stuff.
Alan: But just for those of you that have the opportunity to do this and if you’re trying to do your first deal and you’re hearing this right now, then just take the principles that I’m talking about and just use them, you know don’t stress about like everything has to be perfect. I’m just talking about ways, things you can refine and tweak to give yourself the best possible chance to close deals. So that’s one thing, the other thing that we do David is what we call the elevator pitch. So I think everybody should have an elevator pitch like one or two sentences that describe what your company does and the way-
David: Okay, so what you’re saying is when the lead come in, you get them on the phone, you set the stage that somebody’s going to be calling them, who, when and by what means meaning the number and then next you do the elevator pitch?
Alan: Yeah, yeah, and I like the elevator pitch as early in the process as possible.
Alan: So if you-
David: And what is your elevator pitch?
Alan: So for us it’s easy, we just say the truth. They’re always all talking about me. So for us we just found a way- so for us it’s- our elevator pitch is something like hey David, I can’t remember if I’ve already mentioned this to you but I did want to tell you real quick a little bit about us, we have been in- buying houses here in this city for the last like 15 or 16 years and sometimes we buy them to like renovate them, kind of like, kind of like those people you see on HGTV and- or sometimes we’ll keep them as rental properties or just- or sell them or whatever but we are looking, I know Allen is looking for his next property to buy and so I’m glad we got a hold of each other so how many- tell me again how many bedrooms and bathrooms did you say it is?
David: This is a three-bedroom, two-bath.
Alan: Okay awesome. So three bedrooms, two baths- so anyway guys I’m not gonna go through the whole script.
David: Yeah, yeah, sure sure sure. Yeah, but you tell them who you are. I do that too Alan and I’ll even take it one step further and disqualify myself right out the gate to just say listen, you know we have been buying in this market for- or in this city for you know, 8 years, 10 years, whatever that might be. We are investors, we do the same thing you guys do, you know, we typically buy to buy them and fix them and sell them, and I never leave this part out, for a profit or we buy them and rent them or buy them and fix them and rent them, right? But we are investors and we don’t typically pay retail. You may or may not go that extra step, I do cuz I’d rather just disqualify myself to let them know right away but again this is about you and your- so I wanna-
Alan: I like that.
Alan: No, I like that. We-
David: And I don’t drive it home, I’m not like beating that into them of course by all means.
David: But like you know, if the Zestimate’s 150 and they’re going to get 145 like that- I’m not- I don’t want to waste an hour talking to them, going out viewing the house, it’s not- hey by all means, if that’s the case and they do want retail, I hope they would tell me or interrupt me and say that and then from there, I’m just going to retailor my pitch to hey I got agents that work in my office, can I send them out? They’re going to be able to help you, I’m not, you know?
David: But again, go on.
Alan: Yes. Well what you’re talking about is efficiency. Guys, we’re looking for efficiency and we’re looking for effectiveness. Both, if we can find both that would be 100% efficient and a 100% effective would be amazing in a perfect world and so what David just laid out is like here’s how you can be more efficient at ruling people out. We- so depending on your model, so I think you know this David, so we built out of business where I don’t do acquisitions. I haven’t done acquisitions for a company in quite a while but I’m in charge of the company and I’m passionate about this stuff.
David: [inaudible]the processes which basically is telling other people how to do it, right.
Alan: Yes and so, but that actually gives us a little bit more leverage, right? Because they- so this is the next thing is like there’s always a boss. So to me, it’s harder to land deals if we’re the guys sticking our chest out and I’m the man and all that stuff. You don’t have a business [inaudible]-
David: Man, I’ve never thought of that way before but yeah, I love that. Okay.
Alan: So it helps, totally my opinion but having- being a buyer and being a house flipper and having done this for so long, I feel comfortable doing that but if you’re an acquisitions person out there or if you have acquisitions people on your team, what we found is that for them, it’s not easier if they act like the business owner, it’s absolutely not. First of all, if it’s not true and it’s not genuine, they’re going to struggle. It’s not going to come across, it’s not going to land the right way so if they’re an acquisitions person for your company, then why don’t we just- why don’t we set everything-
David: Tell the public that.
Alan: Say that.
David: This is what- I’m in- my job is to find deals and talk to people like you and qualify you as being a prospect but also make sure that we are qualified to work with you because if you’re looking for those retail type of numbers on this particular deal, like we’re not qualified. Exactly.
Alan: Yeah, we’re investors.
Alan: And my, you know, my job, I work for Alan or you guys can say it however you want, they don’t ever say my name just so you guys know, absolutely not, but they’ll say you know, my boss put me in charge of making the decision on what’s going to be the next property that we’re going to buy. So those are some of my favorite words.
David: I like the way you worded that, that’s beautiful. Okay cool.
David: So then, so you guys are transparent and then you’re going to basically start asking them some questions about the property, you went into it you know, is how many bed and bath, right?
David: I’m assuming that you’re going to want to get as much info as you possibly can, right?
Alan: Yeah, so if it’s a cold call, like we were using example of an elevator pitch, if you have your cold caller doing the elevator pitch, cold callers going to say that and then ask the same 4, 5, 6 questions that all cold callers ask, and then if it’s an acquisitions person doing this on the phone for the first time and maybe- or again, it depends on the business model David, so some people don’t go straight from cold call lead to acquisition, some of them go to like a lead manager or what we call at REI Game Changers, we call it an appointment setter and so some people go to the lead manager or the appointment setter as the next step. That person is then going to ask the 10 or 12 or 14 like actual lead intake, lead manager type questions and gather as much of that info as possible as quickly as possible.
Alan: That usually takes like 8 to 10 minutes. A cold call is more, as we know, a cold call’s more like 4 to 5 minutes typically but the lead manager or the lead intake call is like 8 to 10 minutes typically cuz they’re gonna get all the answers to all those questions and book an appointment for the acquisitions person. For a lot of people listening to this, they don’t have that in their business right now so it goes straight to the acquisitions person. What I would recommend is just making sure they follow some sort of process and get the answers to those questions especially if they’re newer, like get in the habit of gathering that info. We need to know, and not just all the basic stuff about the property and then the condition of the cosmetic part. It’s not just the roof, the foundation, it’s the cosmetic stuff too. We need to know a little bit about that, has it been- so has it been updated in the last 5 years or the last 3 years or whatever, okay cool, tell me about that and let them talk about a little bit but we also need to know how much they’re looking to get for the property, how much do they owe on the property? Cuz we’re trying to figure out if there’s even a chance here, like is there even a chance for us to do a deal cuz if there’s not, I’m not going to invest my time but David, so few people are- so many people are giving too much credit to the asking price like they’re actually believing when somebody says 200 grand that that person isn’t going to take less than that.
David: Oh yeah, I don’t ever believe that.
Alan: I don’t believe it at all.
David: But it doesn’t hurt to ask and in fact we encourage you to ask, right?
Alan: I always ask it, yeah always ask it [clears throat] excuse me, but then we need to know how much they owe on the property so we need to ask that. There’s different ways you can do it but the point is, that’s more important to whether you’re going to be able to do a wholesale deal than their asking price.
Alan: And that’s not theoretical, I’m talking factually speaking if they owe 180 and the ARV’s 200 because they just bought it two years ago or for whatever reason or they did a reverse mortgage or whatever, it’s going to be very challenging for you to do a wholesale though it doesn’t mean you can’t do a subject 2 if that’s what you guys are into.
David: Yeah, it doesn’t mean you can’t make something happen.
David: It just means that you’re going to be very limited on making that a wholesale deal assuming that they don’t have anything to bring to the table which you should always assume.
Alan: Yep exactly, and it helps you do what you said which is we’re trying to determine what bucket am I going to put this lead in, like where does- where- what are my buckets and where does this one go? That’s what we’re trying to do. What we don’t want to do is insert discretion meaning they said they wanted 200 thousand, I don’t even know how much they owe on the thing so I don’t even know if I have a shot here. All I know is they said 200 thousand and the ARV’s 200 thousand because that’s what Zillow says so I guess I’m just going to refer it.
David: Yep. So just to kinda recap on what you said real quick Alan is you know, get as much information as possible, right? So let’s back up. Leads come in, we want to get them on the phone. We want to then set the stage for the lead manager to call them, right? Alan’s going to be calling you at 3 p.m. from this number, save it. Is 3 p.m. work? If not, I’ll let him know a different time and then at that point when the lead manager or the acquisition manager calls them, give them that elevator pitch guys, which is simple, couple sentences, right? Tell them the truth like you said, you know hey seller, here’s a little bit about us and our company. We sometimes buy them to renovate them, sometimes buy them to rent them out, whatever it may be, tell them about the business, keep it short and then ask them you know, do they have a little bit of time to talk to you about the property and if they don’t, then set a time to call them back and if they do, then that’s when you want to collect as much information as possible. So what we collect and I’m going to keep this as short as I can but this is- I’m looking at my lead sheet right now. We get their name, we get the address of the property and we get their phone number, right? Those are three things that we always start with, and why would I ask somebody for their phone number if I’m on the phone with them? Because if I need to get back in touch with them, I want the best number, not the one I’m talking to them all and I’m going to record both of those numbers but if they’re calling me from an office line or like right now, Alan’s at his church doing this podcast, right? Cuz he’s having internet issues at the office or whatever but you know, in the event that he was on a landline at the church, it’s going to be difficult for me to get Alan back on the phone if he’s not going to be there again for a couple days or weeks or whatever it might be, right? So name, address of the property, phone number and then if they want to give you an email, try to get that as well. Next, bed and bath just because I want to verify. I typically already know that, I’m looking at Zillow, I’m looking at Propstream, I’m looking at the MLS, whatever but I want to know the bed and bath count, I want to know the square footage or I want them to at least verify. Then we ask is there an asking price that they have in mind, right? We’ll also ask them what they think it’s worth, right? So you could word that as you know, what would it appraise for? or what do you think it’s worth? But I ask that in two different questions. I say what are you asking for it? and what do you think it’s worth? because those are often not the same number and it helps to fill out their level of motivation. Next we’re going to say you know, how long have you owned the property and what did you buy it for? And they may not want to talk to you about that or they may not want to tell you but if you don’t ask, the answer is always no. Next we say do you have a mortgage? And again, they may not want to tell you but if you don’t answer, the answer is always no.
Alan: How do you ask them?
David: Then we say- go ahead.
Alan: David, how do y’all ask that question?
David: Oh, I mean I just kind of brush it off very nonchalantly like it’s part of the- like it’s just something that’s super natural, so I’ll just- you know I’ll say, you know, what are you asking? And then they’ll tell me that then I’ll say what do you think it’s worth? And they’ll tell me that and then I’ll typically say okay cool, when did you buy it and what’d you pay for it, right? And then I’ll ask them cool I gotcha, you know, have you made any renovations to the property and that may say no or it could be a 10 minute conversation, and then I’ll basically just say okay gotcha, gotcha, well in order for me to help you, you know, really to know if I’m going to be the right fit, you know, how much do you owe? That’s how I ask, just right there. How much do you owe? And again, they may or- they may say it’s not your business and I can usually look it up and get a good idea anyway, right? But I want to verify that or what I’ll stay is yeah, it looks like you know, according to my analysis online that you’ve owned this property for 15 or 20 years so you probably owe very little and that’s another way of asking and they’ll say yeah I only owe 62 thousand, right? So I think that the key there is to just ask, you know. There’s a couple different routes or ways to do it but again, if you don’t ask guys, the answer is always no, right? So we’ll ask if they have a mortgage and what they owe and we’ll ask them next which I think is probably the number one important question there is, why are we on the phone today? And I’ll word it differently, I’ll basically say hey I’m so happy that you know, I have this opportunity to talk with you and I would love to be the guy to buy the property from you but you know, why? Why are you selling? And really what I’m asking internally is what is your motivation? But we’ll just say you know, why are you looking to sell? And I’ve never really had somebody tell me that’s not my business. It’s maybe happened once or twice out of 50,000+ phone calls, right? But typically it’s that’s- they’re happy to tell you that. Well I need to sell Dave because it needs renovation or I got fired and I can’t afford it or I’m moving to a new city for a job or there’s been death or divorce or disease that I’m dealing with, right? And again, that’s a very important question. So we only have a couple more now and this is about you not me but I just want the listeners to know my script, right? Next what I’ll say is okay, thank you for telling me you know, the above information and earlier you had said that you were looking you know, for x you know, in that sales price but if I was able to pay cash and close this deal and make it really easy for you, you know, are you willing to accept a lower offer? Or what’s the least you’d be willing to pay and I think that that is probably the number two most important question behind why are you selling? Because that one question often gets a lower number, right? So if somebody says I’m looking to get 160 and then I say cool, why are you selling and then I follow that question up with okay cool, I got it, maybe I can help, maybe I can’t. I hope I can, but in the event that you know, I was able to make this really easy for you, are you willing to take less? And they say yeah, I actually you know, I could probably do it for 155. Well boom, you just knocked 5 grand off the price by asking one question and then last but not least guys, we’ll just get into a little bit more detail about it. Is it rented? Is it occupied? Is it vacant? And you know, does it need repairs? And that’s it. Handing it back over to you Alan.
Alan: Yeah, that’s really helpful. We do very, very similar things on the questions that we ask. So, we’re getting through the questions and then- and I know we’re limited on time today David so-
David: Yeah yeah, no worries.
Alan: I’m gonna keep moving this, so we get through the questions and then the- what’s the intent, what’s the outcome that we’re after of that phone call? Well it depends if you’re doing in person appointments or if you’re doing over the phone appointments. If you’re doing- if you’re closing deals over the phone, you’ve got two options here, you can just keep going with this and you can run your numbers, you’ve already got everything pulled up, now you got the answers to your questions and you could just basically start negotiating if not closing the deal right there or you could stop, you could do your kind of what we would call pre-negotiation which is a little bit of what you were just eluding to by asking them that question to see how negotiable they are and then you can maybe do that. Then you could say awesome, let me get this information put in, let me run the numbers and I’ll get back with you. So you can do it that way which we call like a two call close, or you could really try to go for the one call close and get a pretty, you know, hard agreement and in essence, based on the condition of the property, come to an agreement based on-
David: Make a verbal, get them to accept the verbal and then at that point, try to get the contract signed by sending it or whatever else it might be, right.
Alan: Yeah. Hurry the contract and all that stuff and there’s a lot of nuance that we can get into that or the outcome could be that you’re after if you’re doing in person appointments of course is to book an appointment. Okay great, well what-
David: Hey I think we’re in the right ballpark here you know. I’m willing to pay this number and you’re you know, we’re not too far off. You know in order for me to get you a better, more finetuned exact number, I really need to see the property, when are you available to show it? I love it. I think that’s great.
Alan: Yeah, when’s a good time for me to check out some of the details of the other property?
Alan: I’ve got a little bit of time later today, I don’t know if it’ll work. That kind of gets me into posture a little bit, I’m a big believer in what I call posture David and never leaning too far forward and never being too far back which leads into rapport-building, right? A good rapport comes in a lot of ways. It comes from having the right posture and not being too aggressive with people but also not being too standoffish with them.
David: Yup, so the way I took this Alan was the call to action after you get to your questions, I’m taking notes here, is either a) make the offer, b) set the appointment, or c) schedule a time to call them back with the offer if you’re not prepared or ready to make it just quite then, basically right?
David: That’s basically the three things that you would do after you get through those questions and if you don’t get through the questions then you’re not going to get to that point but that’s probably for a good reason. They’re either not motivated or you’re not the right buyer for them or they’re not the right seller for you, right?
Alan: Yep. And this is where leadership comes in. Sales in my opinion, sales is leadership so we’ve got to be able to lead these conversations. This is by the way, for the record, why I’m a fan of specialists, so a specialist lead intake person, their job is to get through those questions. Yes, it’s nice if they build rapport and we train them up on how to build rapport better, but they’re a process-oriented person that’s going to get through those questions to see if this is something that David needs to be investing his time in or not and kick it over to David, he can redo those notes in 30 seconds and know how much time he should be investing in this and when he calls them back, how much of his time should he be planning on investing because he had a process-oriented person that got that information for him and kicked it over to him, but anyway, what I was saying was that sales is leadership so we got to be able to lead this conversation, get the answers to those questions, and then we’re going to lead the process of what- here’s what- so here’s what we’re going to do next, without being too pushy but we definitely want to be leaders and do that and there’s always a next here’s what’s happening next and we’re not really needing their verification. I don’t need their approval, I’m the guy that’s buying the house here and I’m the person that’s responsible for determining if this is something that we’re going to invest our hard-earned money into and so of course, I’m going to lead the process. And this is where I so disagree with some other sales training that’s out there where it’s very soft and very kumbaya and very like let’s sit down on the couch and talk for hours about your life and all that stuff.
David: So what’s your approach?
Alan: I think that we should do that cuz we’re all personable people but as a real estate investor, and this is kind of what I wanted to get to David, acquisitions is easier for us because I have a background buying houses.
Alan: I put in the mindset and this is what I think everybody should do is stop acting like a wholesaler and start acting like a real estate investor and there’s some confusion with people too because they’re calling themselves real estate investors and they’ve never bought a house and stuff, and so I don’t think people are thinking like actual investors would. So sometimes we’re telling either whether it’s our clients or acquisitions people that work for us, like you’re not sounding like you would sound if you were actually buying this house, you sound like a wholesale right now, you do know that?
David: Man, that is such- I love that, I absolutely love that. You know what? I often discount my ability to buy because I am an investor at heart, like my number one goal is to find a fix and flip that’s going to be fun and easy and profitable or a rental and everything else is a wholesale opportunity whereas a lot of people I think enter this as oh I just want to wholesale so I need to be really, really low and I don’t really necessarily need to justify my offer as being fair because they’re either going to take it or not. Whereas when I’m out there in the field, I’m trying to do everything I can to justify my offer as not only being low, it’s going to be low, we talked about this last week but it’s also low and fair and here’s why. And if you want to go talk to five other investors, most people would never do this but I say I encourage it and the reason is because we all use the same formula and at the end of the day, I don’t think you’re really going to get any more money, it’s just find the guy that you like working with and hopefully that’s me, you know?
David: And what I do- and what I find Alan is when I tell people call other investors, get quotes, they often don’t, right? Whereas if you say well don’t call anybody else, I want to be the guy, that’s what they’re going to go do, right?
Alan: Yes, yeah so we can call it reverse psychology but what it probably is, I can tell you from the psychology perspective, it’s the first person to bring something up. So since you brought it up and you said- you led the conversation and you told them hey you know, here’s what you could do or what you should do, talk to other people, we all run our numbers the same way, what I would recommend is picking the person that’s best for you but heck make sure you- I mean you know what they’re thinking. It’s like, if you start off a sentence by saying hey David, in fact I’ll tell you right now, what I’m about to tell you is going to sound crazy, you’re going to think Alan you’re off your rocker.
David: I love that. I do it all the time.
Alan: You’re off your rocker.
Alan: Yeah, of course you- and what does everybody think when you start a sentence off like that? They’re like oh, like before you even say anything.
David: Oh he’s being honest, he’s being sincere. I joke Alan, I say guys I often try to get people to sit down at the table with me just because it’s more personable but I also make a joke and I say hey guys, is it okay if we sit down at the table because it’s going to be a lot harder for you to throw me out of your house after I make you an offer and then they start laughing and I start laughing but I’m not joking really, I’m being sincere like you’re not going to like it, let’s sit cuz I don’t want you throwing out- me out of their house but I’ve basically prevented that from happening by saying it and I prepared them to not like my offer so it’s like, you know again, it’s just- it’s one of these tips and tricks. I think it’s great. Alan, I know you have a hard stop in like 6 minutes.
Alan: Oh my goodness.
David: Couple minutes here but I want to, you know, maybe speed the process up just a little bit to help those who are really struggling, right? So you got to get comfortable guys. If you’re not, hire somebody, partner with somebody or develop those skills. Follow the steps that Alan and I have used in this process so far and Alan you know, couple minutes here to wrap up, you know, what are some of like the tips and tricks or strategies or processes, however you want to look at it to make somebody a better salesperson?
Alan: It’s the books, it’s the audio’s, I think get around. I know what I’ve done throughout my entire life is I will pay for programs, I’ll pay for coaching, I’ll go to events, I will get around.
David: To invest in education, right? Wouldn’t that be a good way to word that?
Alan: Invest in education, invest in yourself. It might sound like a cliché, I’m sorry if it does.
David: It doesn’t.
Alan: I know there’s a lot of free information out there but the thing with free information, like we all- David’s the same as me, I’m like we’re a giver. We’ll give you whatever we can.
David: Guys, this is the 256th episode of our podcast, it’s free.
Alan: It’s for free and yet how is it that there’s all these people, there’s thousands of wholesalers closing deals everyday like I mentioned earlier, maybe more than that but there’s tens of thousands, there’s hundreds of thousands of people that are watching YouTube videos that have never closed a deal and a lot of them unfortunately won’t.
David: It’s unfortunate, yeah.
Alan: So we don’t have a lack of information. It’s not- they’re not having trouble because of a lack of information so if that’s not what it is, then what is it? And what I think is, we talked about earlier the belief issue, I think you need to surround yourself with the right people in my opinion. It’s what I was told when I was 18, 19, 20 years old, trying to find my way in the world. It’s proven to be true, I’m 20 years down the road from that now and though all those cliché type things, the reason they’re clichés is they’re true. Your network is your net worth. Reading-
David: It’s so true man, I love that.
Alan: It turns out David, reading books is a good idea.
David: Yeah, I know and I need to do- I need to be better at reading. I actually don’t mind reading but sitting down and watching TV is just so much easier guys, but you don’t necessarily learn stuff on TV, like YouTube maybe one thing, right? But reading, like there is so many good books out there on sales and marketing and wholesaling. In fact, I have a wholesaling book, I have a BRRRR method book, right? Those are great options as well. I love that.
Alan: Yes, yes.
David: Absolutely. So invest in yourself, educate yourself. Invest in the education. Absolutely.
Alan: Yeah, those are the biggest things and who you surround yourself with. Who is your coach? Everybody has a coach. David, you have coaches, I have coaches.
David: Oh, I have coaches, absolutely.
Alan: We’ve got- we, as time has gone on this has proven to be true as well, is that everybody wants things to be free. Guys, nothing in life is free and certainly-
David: And if something is free Alan, you don’t value it.
Alan: You don’t value it. When you pay, you pay attention, that’s what we found. We have spent- we have invested so much money into ourselves. We have marketing coaches, we have business coaches. I hired a personal coach six months ago just to help me just as a human being. We talk- we meet, we talk once a week, it’s not free and it’s not cheap but it’s worth it.
David: But it’s worth it.
Alan: Pays massive dividend, so we’re believers in that, absolutely. We have invested more money into coaching. First of all, I’ll tell you this David, we invest more money into marketing to make our machine run, with both companies, than a lot of people- I mean they would just think you guys are nuts and then we’ve invested more money into ourselves into coaching than-
David: Yeah, I mean I’m in the six-figure range easy, easy.
David: I’d say I’ve probably spent 200 grand, maybe even close to 300 grand on my education and whatnot.
David: Guys, I know Alan is crunched for time here so we’re going to wrap this up. Alan, thank you so much for coming on. If you guys are interested in hopping on a call with Alan or Alan’s team, go to gamechangerscall.com, and this is a place where you can go schedule a one-on-one consultation to learn more about taking your business to the next level. I mean, when it comes to sales, when it comes to marketing, when it comes to taking you know, going from maybe doing one or two deals a month to trying to do you know, one or two a week, I shouldn’t say trying, to doing it, Alan’s the most qualified person I know. I’m speaking that from the truth here, from my heart. gamechangerscall.com, go over there, book that call. We got one minute left and what I want to do is I wanna do a quick-fire round, right? I’m going to throw one out, you’re going to throw one out. We’re gonna try to do two or three here. So tips and tricks to being a better salesperson, right? Tips and tricks, right? So one of my favorite tips I would say is you know, once you ask what they’re willing to sell it for, their asking price, I said it earlier, I’mma say it again is ask if you paid cash and make it really easy, if they’d pay any less and I love that, I think it’s beautiful. Throw a tip at me.
Alan: Okay, when-
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