Minnesota Real Estate Investors Association, Inc.


Using Auto Responders: Understanding the Long and Short Game of Real Estate Marketing

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Blastoff

Many real estate investors believe that marketing to get leads is as far as they need to go, but where a majority of investors stop is where the power of the auto-responder brings opportunity. Of course many investors understand the value of following up with your leads, but 9 times out of 10 investors are not utilizing the power of the auto-responder. This post will hopefully convince you to make the right choice and take advantage of the most powerful follow up tool you aren’t using.

For those of you who don’t know, an auto-responder is an automated email that keeps contact with your list of leads over a period of time. We’ll illustrate exactly what this means with an example:

A motivated seller arrives at your site and is intrigued by your special report, but in order to get the special report they must submit their name and email. So they proceed to enter their name and email where you are then notified of the new seller lead and provided with the information. You take their information and submit it into an auto-responder where you have a scheduled an ice breaker email that follows up what you covered in the special report and elaborate on the solutions you are capable of providing. The next email you have scheduled is set to be sent to them 2 days after they downloaded the report encouraging them further to take action to remedy their situation. This schedule can laid out over any amount of time with any sort of frequency. So maybe 3 months down the line you are the only investor still in contact with the seller as they finally come to terms with their situation and realize they need help.

The prior example illustrates a sort of “long game” where your presence and persistence gets the worm. As many investors will give up after a handful of attempted contacts, your automated schedule of contacts keeps coming thanks to the auto-responder. With really no extra work required you will beat out the large pool of investors possibly jockeying for their business.

It is important to note that there is a difference between using auto-responders for a “long game” with sellers and using a broadcaster for buyers... Read More...


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How a Real Estate Website Should Work

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Blastoff

As real estate investors we understand that we need to have a pipeline for our leads that is organized and direct. The same holds true for an investor’s website because after years of trial and error we have found that squeeze pages and a direct message constantly outperform websites that are loaded to the hilt with bells and whistles.

What we are going to be covering here is my tried and true method for setting up a website that makes for a fine, unobstructed pipeline for your leads. The more you understand the reasons behind the structure, the better you will be able to market and drive traffic that will convert into leads!

First thing we need to address is what you want to get out of your website, I think we can all agree that we want to display our properties for sale as well as to generate a list of buyers, and have seller leads coming in. We see that these are 3 essential pipelines for any investor, but why should we keep the bells and whistles out of the equation?

The answer is that they are distractions from your main goal and only work to obstruct your traffic from the main goal ::GETTING THEIR INFORMATION:: Many think that more is better, but when we want their contact information we really want to keep things simple and this is where the “squeeze page” comes in handy.

What is a “squeeze page” anyway?

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Existing-Home Sales Surge

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Sales increased 9.4% from August 2009. Increases ranged from 4.4% to 13% around the country. This is a good sign, but prices are still declining at 8.5% decline from the same time last year. However, this is the smallest decline in the past 13 months. (Information provided by the National Association of Realtors® )

We still have a long way to go, but as Lawrence Yun states “As long as home values continue to decline, I do not see how the economy can recover on a firm foundation”, the decline in housing prices is a clear indication that Americans are cutting back on spending and trying to budget for the future. So for many homeowners, they will either continue to owe more than their properties are worth, will have to do a mortgage modification or even lose their house to foreclosure.


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Do you have Multiple Streams of Income?

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Blastoff

In today’s economy, you need a financial plan that will increase your monthly income to handle down markets. I have been a big believer in multiple streams of income over the years and over the last year, I am so glad I spent the time over the last few years to generate Multiple Streams of Income.

Today there is a new online source that I highly recommend everyone uses. It’s Free, it’s easy to use and it pays you up at least 10 levels deep. Blastoff is an online shopping mall that makes you money every time someone in your network makes a purchase, and best of all, they also get paid. So you are doing them a favor by recommending Blastoff to your friends. They will thank you for it because they are earning cash back on every transaction they make, and so are you.

You can shop online at places like Target, Best Buy, Starbucks, Kohls, Bas Pro Shop, CompUSA, Circuit City, Tiger Direct, Priceline.com, Expedia, Hotwire, Macy’s, iTunes, Old Navy, GAP, Barnes & Noble, GoDaddy.com, Sears, Hotels.com and many many more…

Give it a try, it is FREE and you can start earning right away... Blastoff Now!


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Will the $8,000 First Time Homebuyers Tax Credit be Extended?

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First Time Home Buyers Tax Credit

The tax credit has helped a lot of first time home buyers get into a new house with little or nothing down. This has spurred a lot sales that would not have otherwise occurred if there was no first time homebuyers tax credit. This has also helped the economy and the housing market stabilize.

So why wouldn’t congress extend the $8,000 First Time Homebuyers Tax Credit? There are many reasons for and against it. I don’t really care which way they go, I just need to know, so that I know how to plan ahead. And today they just announced that Read More...


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Is FHA the Next in Line for a Bailout?

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Why not? Every other financial institution has received one, isn’t it about time the feds bailed out themselves. After all, it’s not their money, its ours.

Here is a report I found on Mortgage News Daily
http://www.mortgagenewsdaily.com/channels/video/112280.aspx

The only reason I think that FHA is even talking about a bailout, is because their counterparts Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac got a bailout. Now granted, there are a lot of FHA borrows who are also going through foreclosure, but I haven’t seen the same kind of numbers from FHA as I have from the other two. Partly because FHA never got into the no money down, cash back and no doc transactions that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac did. Read More...



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How to Get Your REO Offers Accepted

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As an investor who has been making a lot of offers on REO’s I know the challenges that everyone is facing today getting their offers accepted. The next hurdle has become getting to the closing table. I have heard and tried a lot of different techniques lately and here are a few of my observations.

First of all, there is a lack of inventory right now in many places. For example, here in Minnesota we have a 6 month redemption period. So all those properties that didn’t get foreclosed on back in November 2008 thru March 2009 are not on the market yet. Expect a flood of REO properties hitting the market late this year or early next year.

Tip for Realtors:

While doing some research, I came across this article title “ Top 20 tips for making offers on Freddie Mac /Home Steps REO properties” and thought it was worth linking to.

Secondly, the $8,000 tax credit is due to expire on November 30, 2009. This has caused a lot of buyers who qualify for the first time home buyers tax credit to buy now.

Third thing I have noticed is that the lenders have loosened up their financing guidelines somewhat as of late, which has allowed a lot of investors who can qualify for mortgages to pick up these REO’s for long term rentals. Which is a good strategy right now if you can get the financing. Even non-owner occupied interest rates are relatively low right now which has allowed for good cash flows from rental properties that were picked up as REO’s. Read More...


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What are your thoughts about this Real Estate Market?

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I was just talking with a close friend Robyn Thompson (The Queen of Rehabs) on a conference call last night with a bunch of students. And we got to talking about what kind of properties not to buy in today’s market and something she said made a lot of sense. She said she will not buy a small house right now.

While that makes sense, I had not put a lot of thought into it until last night. I have noticed a few things from buyers that told me that I should only be dealing with larger homes, but I hadn’t spent much time thinking about it. So I probed Robyn a little more about her philosophy towards buying larger homes and here is what we talked about.

First of all, because a lot of people are losing their jobs, they are starting small business and they are usually converting one of their bedrooms into a home office. And then I mention one other trend that I have been noticing. A lot of younger people that are losing their smaller homes to foreclosure and are being forced to move in with their parents or other relatives. And it doesn’t look like this is going to be a short term trend. I have talked to a lot of buyers recently that said that they are looking for a larger home because their sons, daughters and their spouses are moving in with them.

Also with the cost of elderly care and nursing homes, more and more people want to have their elderly parents live with them. There is yet another trend that Robyn Mentioned that I also agreed with and that is mother-in-law apartments are becoming more and more popular as a way to offset the cost of living. Read More...


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Do You Feel That You Are Behind In Your Online Real Estate Marketing?

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This question is like quicksand to many investors who feel like this new wave of technology has passed them by, and for that matter who can blame them?

But in business it isn’t about blame, it’s about identifying opportunity and seizing it… Figuring out what’s broken and fixing it… Growing, adapting, and recognizing… To those who are up to their knees in sand there is a very simple solution to getting out:

Grab the stick and slowly pull yourself out. In this case I am referring to getting a website and slowly building traffic through education, trial and error, and common sense. Fact of the matter is that you don’t need a full blown website with all sorts of doodads on it. Why? Because all those doodads distract from the main purpose of having a site, if you have all sorts of reports, weather plug-ins, news streams, and pages galore you’re sinking again.

What you want your website to do (fortunately) is very simple.

  1. Convince your visitor to take action
  2. Get Their Contact Information (to form a lead, either motivated seller or buyer)
  3. Advertise your properties/deals

Informing them of the latest Mortgage News Daily updates does not do anything for you except take your visitor to another page, one that isn’t yours! And you’ve lost them. After years and years of testing bells and whistles we’ve come to the conclusion that a lean mean lead generating machine is the way to go.

The key word being LEAN!

Think of things from the motivated seller’s point of view: Read More...


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Are you using a Professional Website for your Real Estate Business?

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I often joke with people when they ask me why most people get into real estate. I usually answer them with this statement “Most people get into real estate because they are afraid of technology”. I usually get a lot of laughs when I make that statement, but the real truth is that statement is closer to the truth for most people than you would think.

Free Real Estate Websites A lot of people get into real estate because they lost their job or are afraid of losing their job because of a younger more technology friendly work force. The younger investors getting into real estate have no problem embracing technology and have the ability to create and host and maintain their own websites. However, the younger generation makes up a small percentage of real estate investors in today’s market.

While I am not one of the younger generation, I am computer savvy and I have been building, hosting and maintaining my own websites since the mid 90’s. However, most investors don’t know how to create a website, let alone how to host it or even maintain it on a regular basis. I have even talked to a lot of investors who have websites; some of them have even paid thousands of dollars for them, but have no idea how to make changes to them, so they don’t even use them. Read More...


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