Monthly Archives: June 2009

Video Tip: Finding Motivated Sellers

Shopping for great real estate deals requires that you be curious. Often the things you’re curious about can lead to interesting pieces of information that had nothing to do with what you were asking … take this little story for example.

We were told that this particular property was for sale because the owner wanted to move away. That was pretty much all our agent knew. We didn’t know what kind of seller we were dealing with, but thankfully the tenant was home when we were visiting and we learned a few more details…

Quick Tip: Finding Motivated Sellers

Real Estate Investing Newsletter and Starter Tips Guide

Real Estate Investing Newsletter and Starter Tips Guide

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Reader Email: Real Estate Investing is Risky!

Risk in Real EstateOnce in awhile we like to share some of our Rev N You with Real Estate newsletter readers comments or questions … here’ s one we recently answered.

William from Chelsea, Michigan said:

I don’t want you to take this the wrong way because I really think that you two are providing a really refreshing view point for your readers. And, I do think that you are genuine in your message. But, I think that you should spend more time telling people about the risks. Too many people lose their shirt buying houses and I fear that you don’t tell that side enough.


Julie’s Response:

Thank you for your email! And I appreciate your feedback.

We never want to make real estate sound like a guaranteed path to wealth because not every property will make you money. In fact, I believe we’ve told plenty of stories about what CAN go wrong. Take this article for example:

But, I hesitate to put too much focus on the risks involved. That doesn’t mean I ignore the risks, but instead I will write about what you can do to prevent something from ever happening (like 5 ways to protect yourself from a bad property manager). The focus is then shifted AWAY from the risk and onto the prevention or the action you can take towards success.

You have to be aware of the risks (and that is where a good mentor, a good real estate investing program, or even a well written book can be crucial for a new real estate investor). You have to know what obstacles you could encounter on the road ahead so that you can take steps to avoid them.

But – you CANNOT make that obstacle your focus. As soon as you do that, you’re going to hit that obstacle. I’ve written about this several times, most recently for (

The bottom line is that you’re right – there are risks in real estate investing. AND – we try not to make big lists of them because it can be scary. But, to put this in perspective, if we all sat there and focused on the risks we take EVERY DAY just going to the office or the store, none of us would ever go. You could stub your toe getting out of bed, you could get hit by a cyclist crossing the street, you could have a car accident, you could be mugged at the subway … I am not trying to trivialize the risks in real estate, but I am trying to say that things WILL go wrong. That is just life. But, there are a lot of ways to drain the risk from your deals and become a successful real estate investor. And – that is what we focus our readers, students and our own minds on.

Best regards,


Build Your Real Estate Portfolio with this free newsletter full of tips, strategies, stories and resources.

Build Your Real Estate Portfolio with this free newsletter full of tips, strategies, stories and resources.


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Let’s Talk Commercial Real Estate Investing

I do not believe that success is an accident. What I do believe is that successful people apply themselves in a way that maximizes the probability of positive outcomes.

– Jim Randel, Confessions of a Real Estate Entrepreneur.

Confessions of a Real Estate Entrepreneur Do you ever read a book and think: “MAN! I would like to meet this author!”?

Reading Confessions of a Real Estate Entrepreneur gave me that feeling!! It was one of those rare books that explained complicated concepts like Cap Rate, NOI, Triple Net Leases and more in a very easy to understand way AND had fantastic inspirational and motivational stories to go along with it.

This book made me look at our deals in a totally different way and I can guarantee you that we’re going to make A LOT more money on our next few deals all thanks to this author.

To him, real estate is about adding value. You either add value through the process by which you buy the property or you add value by what you do to the property itself. It’s not a new concept but the way he presents it is realistic and practical – yet exciting!

So, when I reached out to him and asked him to be on our next teleseminar, you can imagine how excited I was when he said YES!

So, Monday night, we all get a chance to chat with Mr. Randel about commercial real estate investing, adding value to deals, and being in the game! I can’t wait!!

Jim Randel on Commercial Real Estate InvestingWith 30 years of experience in commercial real estate acting as a lawyer, broker and an investor, he is a true expert on all things related to commercial real estate investing. And – do you know how he began in real estate? He started by buying beat up houses, rehabbing them and selling them!

If you ever wanted to have the chance to learn from someone who knows what it’s like to pocket a few million dollars on one single deal (and lose $1.5 million on another!) then this is your chance. He will also be taking a few minutes to answer YOUR QUESTIONS. So if you want to get your question answered you will have to be on the call!

To register for the call (or order the call replay & transcript to listen and read later):

If you join us for the live call, and he doesn’t mention it, you might want to ask him about Martha Stewart… he was her landlord in her early days!!


Filed under Commercial Real Estate

The Great Bunny Chase – A No Win Proposition

Bram never catches his dream bunny because he doesn't focus on just one ... is the same thing holding YOU back from your dream?

Bram never catches his dream bunny because he doesn't focus on just one ... is the same thing holding YOU back from your dream?

During the rental property renovations we went through a few weeks ago, we stayed with Dave’s parents who live in Nanaimo. They also live right across from a large school yard and just steps from a big park. These two places happen to be massive breeding grounds for GIGANTIC black bunnies and the odd brown and white bunny.

Bram, our wonderful pet and best friend, is completely obsessed with the bunny rabbits. He wakes up at the crack of dawn anxious to get out there and chase them. Our normally laid back and easy going dog turns into a crazed hound on a mission. But, happily for me and sadly for him, he has never even come close to catching one.

You see … when he races into the school yard the bunnies scatter. They are EVERYWHERE and he can’t choose which one to chase so he tries unsuccessfully to chase them all. If he would select one little bunny victim and focus he just might have a shot, but he doesn’t. Instead he runs after different ones, changing direction rapidly thinking the next bunny HAS to be easier to catch. The only thing he does successfully is exhaust himself. It makes my job of walking and exercising him early in the morning easy, but he is never satisfied because he never even gets close to any one bunny.

Does this sound like your attempts at real estate investing? Or just wealth creation in general? You’re not alone. I recently wrote about this lack of focus (I called it Shiny Penny Syndrome) for Early to Rise … and about how this syndrome just could be holding you back from your dreams.

Read my article here:

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Filed under goal setting, Productivity

William Lederer Creator of CompleteLandlord.Com on the Phone!

“Have you ever heard anyone talk about the joys of landlording? Probably not, since most of the buzz surrounding the concept of owning properties that others live in revolves around collecting rents, evicting tenants, repairing things broken by residents, and then filling the space when they roll out. What you don’t always hear about are the postiive aspects of landlording, including the financial rewards, the positive rates of return on real estate, and the good feeling that comes from providing housing for others. These positive attributes go a long way in helping property owners overcome the basic challenges of renting out their homes.” –
William A. Lederer, The Ultimate Landlord Handbook

We’ve never been shy about telling you about our terrible tenants, our nightmares with property managers or our bad choices in properties. We always try to find balance though – sharing those stories equally as often with the fact that we built a net worth of over $1 Million dollars in 7 years, and that some of our properties put as much as $1000 of positive cash flow in our pockets each month. While we focus our blog more on random stories and more personal real estate related events in our lives, we spend most of our time on our website and our newsletter with the intention of helping our readers overcome the challenges that many new real estate investors face.

To that end, we’re really excited to have William Lederer joining us tomorrow evening for a teleseminar. His three books are full of sound and balanced advice, and we know he’s going to be an excellent guest to help you decide if real estate is right for you. And if you’re already sure it is, he is going to help you know how to find and buy the right properties for you AND he’s going to teach you how to add value!

In other words, he’s going to share how to put more money in your pocket EVERY month! 🙂

To get all the details for this call and sign up, please click here:

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Rental Property Renovations – the diary continued

Sink in the Kitchen before the renovation

Sink in the Kitchen before the renovation

Well – yesterday actually marks the official completion of our rental property renovation project. We had to hire a professional to come in a finish the bathroom floors because we ran out of time … as with every remodeling project we’ve ever done it seemed that unexpected surprises lurked around every little corner in the house! Thankfully every challenge was resolved fairly easily with a bit of money and a bit more time. 😀

So here’s the wrap up videos…

Day 5 and 6 of the Rental Property Renovation Project

Day 7 and 8 of the Rental Property Renovation Project

Have you done a renovation project on a rental property? How did you decide what parts to upgrade? Did it come in on time and on budget? If so, how’d you do it? What size was your project? Tell us about it!!

We’re going to add up the final receipts and do a summary of the costs and the lessons learned in an upcoming post …  we know a lot of people are curious what we did this for. I can tell you that we’d budgeted about $5500 and I KNOW we are over that budget by at least $1000 … so stay tuned!

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Filed under investing, real estate, renovations, Video