Shotgun Investing

August 1, 2014 by  
Filed under blog

Last week I talked about how you can receive a huge rate of return on your invested dollar—100% return– by increasing the value of the ‘right kind of asset ‘by only 10%! But the real trick is that you must know how to increase its value by 10 or more percent to start with.

In my opinion and from my experience the best type of asset that lends itself to  ‘forced improved value ‘ is good ol ‘ real estate and specifically properties that need a  ‘face lift ‘. These are beat up houses, duplexes, apartment buildings etc., or what I have often refer to as ‘dirt bag properties ‘.  The key is doing a ‘face lift ‘not ‘bone surgery ‘ so you would need to find properties that are run down mainly on a cosmetic level.  You really don‘t want a property that needs to be fully rewired, plumbing pulled or the foundation replaced.  I look for properties that haven‘t been painted for 25 years or the front lawn is dead and the fence is falling apart. Maybe it just needs new carpet and window coverings to turn it around. Those kinds of properties can make you a fortune and do so in a few short years.

I do want to add that when I was introduced to leverage I was a stock broker and I began trying to use leverage with stocks and bonds but I found out very quickly that the real problem was I really couldn’t ‘fix up’ a stock and I didn’t have any control over the company whose stock I was buying or the stock market itself.  I did however, have some control over a little beat up house that I would buy, even though that is where the real work began.

Once you have found the dirt bag property, the next big chunk of work is actually doing the fix up to greatly improve its value and give you those big fat returns on your invested dollar.  So how do you find those fixer uppers and exactly what kind of work does it take?

There are several ways this can be done.  You could drive through the right neighborhoods that are a bit run down and in your price range, but that is the hard way to do it and it takes a ton of time.  Since time is one of those things that none of us seems to have enough of I recommend what I call the ‘shotgun’ method.  The concept of a shotgun is that when a hunter shoots at a bird the shotgun blasts hundreds of BBs that spread out as they speed toward the target. Most of those BBs miss the mark but it only takes one or two BBs to bring down the target.  Likewise, my  ‘shotgun method ‘ of finding the right properties is very efficient and a real time saver and it only takes one or two hits to score your target.

All you do is use the internet to observe all the for sale properties that even roughly fit your  ‘specs ‘ and then make low ball offers –around 20% to 25% lower than the asking price.  And you do this without even driving by the property.  The real key here is to be sure you have a “subject to” clause in your offer, which basically says that this offer is good only upon certain conditions.  Those conditions can be subject to acceptable financing or even something simple like “subject to my spouse or partners approval”.  So now when you shoot your shotgun at many dozens of properties each week or each month, you only get in your car and drive by and or do an inspection after you get a  ‘counter offer ‘  or sometimes, an actual acceptance on you super low ball price! It does happen once in a while!

Using the shotgun method works if you make enough offers and then after you have scored a property, then the physical work begins. It‘s not easy but it‘s simple.  More on how to fix up those properties next week!



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