The former Epic Intensive participant is with us today. Greg Helbeck is here to share his mistakes and the lessons he learned about competing and winning in virtual and expensive markets. He needed 9 months to close his 1st deal, then they snowballed because he made rewarding real estate moves in high-end New York and Dallas. Listen to his story and duplicate the consistency and perseverance that will set you for success. Learn why Greg decided to stop his previous job to become a full-time real estate investor, what is the key to doing real estate remotely, and how to beat out your competitors.
• The new wins at The Epic Pro Academy
• How to get a chance to enjoy the surprise event we included in the next Epic Intensive program
• Greg Helbeck’s real estate story
• Why it took him 9 months to find and close his 1st deal
• Why he did not quit
• How he acquired his 2nd deal
• Why Greg switched markets from New York to Dallas
• The key to being efficient doing real estate remotely
• How he realized that having boots on the ground was indispensable
• The 3 best sources of off-market deals
• Why you should read Confessions of A Real Estate Entrepreneur
• The potential downside of being good at setting and achieving goals
• Greg’s future plans
• Greg’s newly launched podcast
• Where and how else you can get in touch with him
• Where to get the opportunity to learn more on virtual wholesaling
If you’d like to work directly with me on your business… go to REIAce.com, share a little about your business and what you’d like to work on, and I’ll get you all the details!
- Would you like to meet in person? Our next live event is right around the corner! Go to EpicIntensive.com for the details.
- Become an Epic community member at The Epic Real Estate Investing Show
One of my favorite things to do is share with investors the latest and greatest tactics and strategic friends I make. I do it every week and you can listen in by subscribing to The Epic Real Estate Investing Show podcast on iTunes – Click Here.
- Grab my book, Epic Freedom ($1)
I frequently hear from people looking into investing in real estate for the first time, “How long is it going to take?” So much so, I wrote a short book about the 2 easiest and fastest strategies to a paycheck in real estate. You can grab a copy for $1 and I’ll pay the shipping – Click Here.
- Join our Badass Investor Program and be a Case Study
I’m putting together a new Badass Investor case study group at Epic Real Estate this month… stay tuned for details. If you’d like to work with me on your real estate investing, go to FreeRealEstateInvestingCourse.com to get started.
- Also, check these out:
If you found this podcast helpful, please take a few minutes to leave us a positive review in iTunes. Your reviews help to improve our search rankings so that we can spread the love. Thank you!
Speaker 1: From coast to coast, Epic Investors are doing the most, it’s time for another Epic Field Report.
Matt Theriault: So on the phone with me, I invited a participant in our pilot program, your first deal as he completed the program and cashed his first check and I wanted to come on the show and talk about it. So, Jayron, welcome to the show.
Jayron: Thanks. Pleasure to be here man.
Matt: Yeah, thanks for participating, thanks for following through as it paid off for you. Congratulations. So you posted a check inside of the course, that’s part of the agreement and you get 300 bucks for that. So how did you find this deal?
Jayron: Actually, with this deal, in particular, my dad told me about it. I told him, hey, you know, I’m getting the whole sell, I didn’t get into the real estate investing arena and I just kinda let him know what I do, what I want to do, somehow, I mean he heard of a lady who was selling her home and she wanted to sell it quickly and then the price, was shocking that she wanted to sell it for, which is $2,000, and I said, “Look, I will buy it. Yes, send her to me.” And so that’s basically how I found the deal, is through word of mouth through my dad.
Matt: Got it. So what’s the lesson there?
Jayron: The lesson there, oh man. Deals could fall in your lap or you could go out and chase them. You will hope, you know, you dream to have them come to you, but just through word of mouth, letting people know what you do could also land you deals.
Matt: Yup. Don’t keep what you do a secret, right?
Jayron: Yeah, that’s true.
Matt: Perfect. So you sold the property, so you wholesaled it, right?
Jayron: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Matt: And you made 1500 bucks. Need I just ask this question. The biggest lesson learned in this transaction would be?
Jayron: The biggest lesson learned in this transaction, I’d say is to, for me to be a little more confident. With this deal, it was so crazy. You always want to find out all the information about everything. The lady was wanting to sell her house but she only owned half of it. So I had to go dig in real deep. Then there was a lienholder who I had to get in contact with, and I wholesaled it to the lienholder who owned the other half. He bought his own house back for $3,500. So if any lessons in it, man, just don’t give up. Find out all the details on the transactions because sometimes when they are too good to be true they can be. But you know, I did all of this with no money. Even though I thought I was going to have to pay money for the title because in Louisiana, you know they do abstract and all that. They charge like $250 but in this case, the title representative, the title attorney, he said, “You know what, this one’s on me,” so I still didn’t have to come out of the packet. I was like, whoa! Man, it sounds too good to be true, but it is good and it is true for sure.
Matt: Right. The deal had a buyer built right into the deal.
Matt: That’s good. That’s good. So what’s next?
Jayron: So yeah, I’m just still keeping at it.
Matt: Nice. Yeah, so if you want to, it’s not quite how the course plays out, but I think what the lesson here is, or what the evidence is, is that by just doing the activity, it creates opportunity. Most of the time it’ll create direct opportunity, but sometimes as Jayron discovered, it’ll create that opportunity indirectly. And if you’re in the game, and you’re doing the activities, and your mind is right, then you’re in a position to actually seize that opportunity.
Matt: Right? So if you’d like to check out our pilot program, your first deal course, you can go to freerealestateinvestingcourse.com. There are all the details right there. Just check it out and if you like what you see go ahead and join us. Jayron, thanks for joining us, keep doing what you’re doing and let us know if you need any help. All right?
Jayron: Yes sir, will do. Thank you.
Matt: You Bet. Take Care.
Speaker 1: Making offers and cashing checks. What’s new? What’s next with Ashley Monteon.
Ash Monteon: Hey, this is Ash, Matt’s assistant. We’ve got a great episode ahead as Matt’s going to show you how to make it rain. But before he gets started, I wanted to give you the scoop on what’s new and what’s next at Epic Real Estate. Let’s start with what’s new? In The Epic Pro Academy, pound for pound, the most successful online community of real estate investors, Sean had a great payday and picked up a $10,000 check for a wholesale deal. Good job, Sean. Ryan, Ryan posted a $15,000 check for a refi. Awesome there Ryan. Jack, Jack had three cash-out refinances and two of his flips are featured in his local design and living magazine. I actually took a look at the link you posted there, Jack. Beautiful, beautiful properties. Congratulations to both you and Josh, amazing stuff. You guys are doing amazing stuff out there in Fargo.
Tim, Tim got a property under contract and has several other offers in the pipeline. Kevin, Kevin also got a seller finance property under contract and he said, “A couple more of these and I will be free.” Chris, Chris had his biggest win today. His focus has changed from flipping to build a cash balance to flipping to build his portfolio. His new mantra to holds per month as he continues to execute his Aria Ace game plan put into play back in November. This past week, he also closed on the sale of a turnkey rehab, that got him a nice $25,000 profit and he had to down a buy and hold that he’d been targeting in a neighborhood for its appreciation potential. The cash on cash return for that one is going to be 26.3%, awesome job Chris. We’re super, super proud of you. Thank you to all the investors who posted for follow through Friday, we’ll be looking out next week to see all the great things you guys accomplish.
What’s next at Epic Real Estate? Well, the Epic Intensive lead machine workshop. It’s going to be July 18th through the 20th in Manhattan Beach, California. I’m sure you’ve heard Matt mentioned details on this three-day workshop. What he may not have mentioned, it’s a little secret actually. I’m actually not sure if I’m supposed to be sharing this on the podcast, but when you’re signing up on epicintensive.com, on page two, there’s an option to upgrade to VIP. We wanted to take this opportunity to create an unforgettable experience for our VIP guests. So we convinced Matt to charter a yacht, that’s all I can say about that for now, but it’s going to be a really, really fun event. I mean, dude, who doesn’t love a fun boat party, and you get to party with the epic crew. So get your VIP tickets while they’re still there. That’s all I’ve got for you guys today. See you guys next week for what’s new and what’s next. Enjoy the show.
Speaker 1: This is Theriault Media.
Matt: Yeah, hello and welcome. Welcome to The Epic Real Estate Investing Show. This is where everyday people come to get the tips, strategies, and tactics to escape the rat race using real estate, where we move at the speed of instruction, where we move faster than our doubts, where we have no fear of competition because we are the competition that they are afraid of. As evidenced by what you’ve heard so far, The Epic Investors are making money moves and I have one of those epic investors on the phone today where we first met. I think it was at an Epic Intensive probably three years ago or so. And thank you to Ash for letting that out of the bag about the private yacht. I did charter that for some special guests and my team, and I’ve reserved some space for the VIPs. So when you purchase a VIP ticket to The Epic Intensive, that automatically puts you on the list, it’s going to be a lot of fun.
Anyway, our guest, he’s been making some serious money moves of his own and I invited him to share with you exactly how he’s doing it. So please help me welcome to the show Mr. Greg Helbeck. Greg, welcome to Epic Real Estate Investing.
Greg Helbeck: Thank you so much for having me, Matt. This is the first real estate podcast I’ve ever heard. So to be a guest is truly an honor. It’s a, I guess it came full circle.
Matt: Nice. No, and that’s kind of why you’re here because you had shared a story with me or a testimonial thought with me. Just totally unsolicited, I just got an email from you out of the blue one day and I have a little bit of it here, and I’ll go ahead and read it, why not? It says, “Right around three years ago I started listening to your podcast. I remember I was at a dead end job cutting weeds for $10 an hour, you were explaining how to invest in real estate and it seems so distant to me because I was a broke 20-year-old in the middle of college with no plan or direction. Your podcast planted the seed in me to make the decision to become a full-time real estate investor. And I’m proud to say three years later that decision has changed my life.” And it goes on. And basically, the big quote out there was, “I’m doing two to four deals per month and netting 25,000 to $30,000 per wholesale deal.” You are living in Los Angeles, you’re running your business virtually and I just wanted to bring you on and you know, congratulate you in person.
And I know we met in person a while back at The Epic Intensive, that was a pleasure. Give me a little bit of a how starter. So you listened to a podcast, the seed was planted, you came to The Epic Intensive and boom, I didn’t hear from you for a while, but then all of a sudden you start appearing everywhere on social media and you’re showing checks, and you’re standing in front of rooms and you’re doing amazing things. So tell me what happened.
Greg: Thanks. Thanks. So yes. So I’m, I got started when I was really young. I was 20 years old. I was coming off a hockey career and I wanted to play professionally, it never worked out, so I had to kind of go to school and kind of face reality. So I remember I was, I had a summer job, it was kind of like a contracting job. I would go cut weeds on my own time then the guy would pay me in cash. I remember, you know, when I was cutting these weeds, I was like, why not learn how to make some money? I don’t want to have a job my whole life, I never liked having a job. So I discovered the Epic Real Estate Investing Show, ironically. And I remember listening to like your first episodes and like you were talking about how to wholesale and flip contracts and all that. It just really appealed to me.
So I listened to a bunch of podcasts, your show, Sean Terry’s show. Then I went to a little law like free event, you know, I guess those seminars, they kind of travel around from city to city, went to one of those, joined like the low-level package or whatever, spent a couple of thousand bucks, got my foot in the door just some higher level education. And I just kind of hit the ground running. In the beginning, I was really young at the time, 20 years old, no one would take me seriously, then after like nine months, I got my first deal. And then after that, it sort of snowballed. I started doing more and more deals consistently, but I still didn’t have that much experience or capital.
A year and a half after that, actually, more like two years after that, I started to get pretty good at marketing and like negotiating. So then I started to make bigger spreads in my New York market and then eventually I started to go into other markets and do it remotely. So I jumped into the Texas market, the Dallas market to be specific, a couple of years ago and started figuring out how to do it kind of virtually, because New York where I’m from originally, I was running into some problems with attorneys and stuff like that. So I wanted to kind of spread out my strategy and go into some title company state so I don’t have to deal with all the BS.
So fast forward to today, I’m buying still like two to four properties a month, I’m not only wholesaling now, I’m actually doing some more, just kind of closing on them, doing some light renovation and then getting it back on the market, just cut some of those markets we can do that and make more spreads. But, and then I’m looking for more into rentals. So that’s kind of the high-level overview for me.
Matt: Nice. So there we go. There’s a bunch of stuff and I want to touch on. And you know, we’re running a pilot program right now where we’re helping people get their very first deal. And you shared with, just shared with me that it took you nine months to get that first deal. What do those nine months look like? And what eventually switched to where it popped?
Greg: Sure. No, it’s a great question. So I wasn’t very consistent in the beginning and I didn’t have the right expectations because I didn’t have the experience or you know, I didn’t have a track record or anything. So like the learning curve was tough in the beginning just because I didn’t know what I didn’t know and I could have been much more consistent, and I should have tracked my activities better than I did. Because I was just kind of going out, running around like a chicken with my head cut off and I wasn’t really like measuring anything or seeing what was working. So I think if I was a little bit more effective, and what I was doing was, I was just putting out bandit signs and I was calling on like Craigslist because that’s really all I could do and I was handwriting letters too. I was doing that, that was rough.
But you know, basically, what was the question one more time? Was it, what did I do to get those deals? Or how did I stick through it to get to the …
Matt: Yeah. So you’ve already answered a little bit. So it took you nine months because you admitted that you were inconsistent, you weren’t really tracking your activities and then now you’re working bandit signs, Craigslist, and yellow letters. So what actually, what popped for you first?
Greg: It was a bandit sign.
Greg: So I started to put them out more consistently and then I got one good call and I actually partnered up with another investor who was experienced because I was so new, I had no buyers or anything, and I said, “Hey man, I think I have a deal.” He said, “Yep, you got to deal.” Said, “Let’s partner on it. I’ll sell it to my buyers. We’ll do a JB agreement and we’ll split it and I’ll show you exactly how this works.” That was like the key because of the value I got from him showing me what to do, was totally worth splitting the deal. 50/50. So it’s off of bandit sign. The lady called, it was an absentee owner, you know, some tenant issues, vicious dogs in the house and she sold it to us. We found a buyer and assigned the contract and it was like crazy because I took action for so long, like nine months and I didn’t make any money right away. So I’m like, you know, when I actually got my first check, I was like, oh my God, you can make money in this business. It’s interesting, you know?
Matt: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Greg: And then from there it kind of snowballed.
Matt: And just from experience of doing this for the past decade and working with people trying to get their first deal, a lot of them quit well before nine months. What was it about you that helps you persevere?
Greg: Yeah, so this is something that was key for me and I didn’t share this in the beginning. When I went to that real estate seminar, when I effortlessly listened to podcasts, I made the decision that day I was going to be successful no matter what. I said, “I’m going to make this work. This is going to work out. It might not, it’s not going to be easy. It’s not going to be a walk in the park,” but I said, “I’m going to be a real estate investor. This is what I’m going to do.” Because I know from your show, more millionaires have been created in real estate than any other industry combined. So I knew
… work, and I made the decision. It was going to work out. I wasn’t wishy-washy about it. I wasn’t like, “Well I’m going to dabble. I’m going to try, and then if it doesn’t work out, maybe I’ll be an internet marketer, I’ll be a stock trader.” I’m like, “No. I’m doing this. I’m going to be a real estate investor. This will work out eventually.”
The harder it got the more I would persist because the thing is, and this is I think for new people listening this will be very helpful. The harder it was in the biggest, the more excited I almost got because I knew that most people would not persist like me. Because I’m like, okay, if I keep putting these signs out, most people are going to quit, so if I just keep doing this, eventually something will stick. I’ll get the check. It’ll be worth it, and then it’ll get easier as I have more experience. So the harder it got, the more persistent I became because I knew that was almost like the barrier to entry because most people have the wrong expectations going in-
Matt: Well said. Have you read the book, The [Dip 00:14:50]?
Greg: You talked about that book- [crosstalk 00:14:52]
Matt: Yeah, it’s required reading in the follow through crew, and it says exactly that.
Greg: Oh, man. That book… You mentioned that book. I read it at like the perfect time. I remember I was in my crappy car that I could barely afford reading this thing. Like, oh well, I’m in the middle of this thing right now, so I figure I might as well get out of it, and my goodness. It certainly is a powerful book, especially if you’re getting into any business endeavor when you have no experience. It’s an amazing book. It’s so short, too. Short and sweet book.
Matt: Yeah. It’s great, and it’s inspiring because it’s kind of like when things get rough, and you’re experiencing a lot of resistance, you know that’s when your competition is quitting, and so you get excited about that because they’re quitting, but I’m still going, and at pop for you. That took nine months or so. It’s been smooth sailing ever since, right?
Greg: Yeah. Every day it’s like home run after home run. No issues ever pop up.
Matt: Let’s make that leap from the first to the second deal. So how did the mindset shift, and how did that one happen?
Greg: Yeah, so it was proof of concept first. I saw that it worked because, in the beginning, I think a lot of new investors, they struggle because they don’t have the track record with themselves or basically with themselves. They don’t it works. They’re like, oh well I don’t know, I’ve never done this before. They think they see people on the internet, they see people, their friends maybe doing it. They go to REIA meetings. They see other people doing it, but they still for some reason, they can’t wrap their heads around the fact that they can do, until they actually make the deal happen.
The second I knew that it would work, and I knew that I had to be consistent with my marketing. You have that Daily Success Report that I used to use. I still use a variation of it now, but I just kind of put my own spin on it. I just started to get more consistent and I think it was from another [Banen 00:16:33] sign actually, in terms of the other deal. I just put another sign-out, similar situation. There was another, almost identical, I brought another investor into that one because this was in a very expensive area in New York, and I didn’t have enough money to put the deposit down. I basically wholesaled it a guy who does like ten deals a month, and then he helped with the deposit and then the assignment agreement, but I brought another investor in, wholesaled him the house, off assigned. Then when I got two of them, this was a while ago now, I was like okay, this is legit. This is really.
Matt: The first one wasn’t a fluke.
Greg: Yeah, it was not a fluke. Then from there I just started to become a student of marketing and negotiation and stuff like that.
Matt: Fantastic. Great story and I know that’s going to resonant with a lot of people because a lot of people were in that position and are in that position. Let’s see. Okay so you were in New York, and you just mentioned it was kind of an expensive area, and you decided to venture out. So tell me about that transition.
Greg: Totally, totally. I like how you brought that up, because there’s a lot of people who might be in the New York market tri-state area, it’s definitely a great market but it is a little different. I still buy there today, but I buy in different markets as well to offset.
Originally, so in New York, it’s an expensive area and the thing in New York that you have to just watch out for, and just know, is that when you’re doing business in that state, it is an attorney state which means that you have to use attorney’s on the sellers side and on the buyers side to facilitate transactions. The reason that can be an issue sometimes, is that if the seller has an attorney, and they are hard to deal with, it makes the whole entire transaction just a little bit more complicated.
It still works, it’s totally still legit in New York, but it slowed down my sales cycle. The reason I had to venture out is because my sales cycle was very long, because it would take us two or three weeks to get a contract in from their attorney, and then I still had marketing going out, and I’m like oh my god, I can’t just contract in house, I have to have their attorney send a contract. Then they’re going to strike through all these things, then they’re going to get the assignment clause out of there, and all this.
So I said, okay I’m going to have to go into a market where there are title companies state, where I don’t have to worry about attorneys and where there’s enough demand for me to do enough marketing to get the deals that I want to get. I decided to go into Dallas, I just kind of picked it randomly. I knew it was a good area, there’s a lot of activity in there. Buying whole, buying–
Matt: That was a random choice for you.
Greg: It was pretty random. I knew it was a good market, but I didn’t have any fixations on Dallas. I said this is a market where I’m going to try it. It seems like a good market. I know there’s a lot of investors here, I can sell properties if I get good deals. I just started marketing down there. I jumped into Dallas, basically to offset my long sales cycle in New York.
The way I was marketing down there, is I was doing a lot of like Larry Higgins style, like skip tracing deals. Doing after a lot of tough properties with title issues, like vacant houses, things like that. I started pursuing properties like that down in Texas. I was able to kind of grow that business, that side business, sorry, and get that to some two to three properties a month down there. I was doing that all virtually.
To rewind the clocks, I remember I did my first virtual deal and I never saw the house. I never met the seller, and it was like a $30000 wholesale fee, and I was like oh my god, this is crazy, I never saw this thing. Then from there, it was like a light bulb went off, and I started doing it more and more and more. The main reason I went to Texas was just to get out of the New York lawyer stuff, and have a little bit more consistency with my cash flow within my company.
Matt: Very good. So you picked Dallas and you did some skip tracing and looked for properties with title issues. Now did you call them or did you mail them? How did you contact them?
Greg: Yeah so, the mailing is good. I still like mail, it’s great. With some of those challenging properties with title issues, it’s a lot of the times, if you mail them, ironically they’ll get postcards, they don’t think they can sell this house. For some reason they inherited the house, they don’t think they can do anything with it. You have to a lot of the times, pick up the phone and call these people. It’s usually the heirs of these people.
You have to say, listen, you know, trying to identify the property. I’m not sure if you’re the owner or not, but looks like you might be. There’s an opportunity, I can buy this home off you, and solve your problem, get you some cash. Usually, these properties are in default, which means that either the taxes are delinquent or the mortgage is delinquent, so it’s going to get taken anyway, eventually.
Then you offer help. You say hey listen, I’ll work with you. If there are title issues I’ll help you walk through those. So if you’re open to selling, great, if not, no sweat. I was approaching them over the phone because a lot of times they’re a little surprised. Sometimes they own this property, they thought the bank took it, or the county owns or “oh, my mother’s estate was a mess, I can’t deal with that anymore.” They just gave up on these properties. Meanwhile, they’re free and clear, and they’re just sitting there, and you’re like oh my god, if I could solve this problem. Number one I’d get a good deal, and number two I can help this person get some money they probably weren’t expecting.
Matt: Nice. Sweet. Okay. So you got the first one, and they were like cool. You did all the paperwork, the transaction all through what? The mail, the internet? How’d that go?
Greg: DocuSign. Yeah, so DocuSign is a tele-company down in Dallas. They were pretty cool. It was all electronically, and then thing too, going virtual that… give some advice to people, and I’m sure you’re a virtual investor so you know this. Having good boots on the ground is key. I mean if you don’t have boots on the ground, it’s obviously possible, but it’s a little bit more difficult. Whether that’s an employee or whether that’s someone your JV-ing with. You need to have somebody on the ground who can go to the property if need be, who can meet with people who maybe aren’t familiar with DocuSign, maybe they’re elderly and they don’t have a computer. You need to have the boots on the ground in order to be efficient in my opinion when you’re working remotely.
Matt: Yeah. I agree. By the way, if you like the sound of starting a virtual wholesaling business, you might be interested in the virtual wholesaling course two of my student’s put together. It’s getting ready to open up shortly, you can take a look over at wholesalingvirtually.com. There’s a registration page there that right now it’s got some information, if you like what you see, join us.
It kind of said the same thing, that’s what made me think of it, is that the boots on the ground are key. So you did the first deal, and I discovered this too, kind of the hard way. You did the first deal without boots on the ground. What started to happen where you recognized that you needed boots on the ground?
Greg: Yeah, so the first one really was like I just kind of did everything, and I just… it was like the house was there, but I wasn’t there, so if something went wrong I was like oh my god, if I have to get on plane, or then I have to call somebody. It was just kind of chaos.
So I said, you know what, let me find somebody. The way I did was I made a strategic partnership with somebody. We’re not like formal LLC partners, but we just do deals on a case by case basis. The first one was just overwhelming because there are so many moving parts. That one happened to work out, but if it didn’t, I would have cost myself a deal, just because I didn’t have boots on the ground.
The second one, it was like okay, I think the guy I partnered with, he had to meet the seller in person, because she didn’t have a computer. He signed it up, he did all the logistical stuff. He sold it. I just generated a lead, negotiated it on the phone and then he signed the contract. I probably had maybe an hour of my time invested. Made a really good wholesale sale on that one too, and I was like wow, if I can just focus, and the key for me, was like if I can just focus on what I’m good at, which is producing quality leads, and then speaking to people who I can help, and making them an offer on the phone and negotiating which is something I’ve studied a lot and worked on a lot. I can have someone else do what they’re good at, stuff that I’m not that great at, logistical- [crosstalk 00:23:56] and coordination, day to day stuff.
I’m just not that kind of person. I’m not like a systems guy. I started to realize that the more I can kind of stay in my zone, the more I can do the revenue generating activities, I can have someone else do the other end of the business, and then I can live wherever I want, and then he can deal with the stuff that he wants to deal with, the logistical stuff, and we can be a good synergistic partnership.
Matt: Right. So you’re in New York, you got a tough market. You went virtually to look for greener pastures so to speak. Somewhat found them but you’ve continued to branch out. What has caused you to look into other markets?
Greg: Yeah, so my big thing now, like going back to doing the virtual thing, I still do that, but I actually kind of shifted a little bit more back into the New York area. I live in California now, but I go back to New York quite often for some deals. As I started wholesaling and getting more capital and experience, I started to realize that if I can close on some of these properties, especially in New York. I can five X the spread, like hands down five X the spread, and we did it on a couple of deals where we made very big profits.
I was like oh my god, this is insane. If I just do like two of these a month, that’s better than doing four in Texas. Now I’m starting to shift my business to more of closing on properties, and either doing a fix and flip or wholesale. Especially in higher-end markets, the higher end area in New York. Another thing that I’m looking into, we’re actually working on a deal right now, is actually getting a little more into almost like rezoning kind of deals.
So right now, we’re buying a property, it’s a single family, it’s on a huge lot. We’re actually in the process of wholesaling it to a developer, for a huge spread, and he’s going to take that and he’s going to subdivide those lots. The crazy thing about that is we’re giving the seller retail, we’re giving them what they want for the house because we know we can see it on the back end. For whatever we have it in the contract for, plus like a 100 something thousand dollars spread, because we’re buying it on one basis, and we’re selling it on a completely different basis, on like a subdivision deal.
As I get a little bit more experience, I’m starting to do more of those types of bigger deals, so I can save more capital to then buy more cash point properties.
Matt: Mm-hmm (affirmative). Sweet. It’s funny that the patterns I’m starting to recognize. The two students that have put this wholesaling course together, they kind of have a very similar story. If you want to take a look at that it’s at wholesalingviturally.com. They both went virtual because they felt their markets were tough. Now they both have returned to their markets, and now they’ve got two, they’ve maintained their virtual one. Now they’re back in their homeland, so it’s funny.
Greg: There’s no place like home, man. It’s funny, I move out of L.A to San Diego, I love it out here it’s like paradise, but I still go back to New York like once a month, because for the business and then like it’s where my family and friends are. It’s cool to visit them. There’s no place like home.
Matt: Right. The point being is they thought what they were trying to do didn’t work in their home market. So that’s why they went elsewhere and they realized, hey wait a minute, there are houses right here, right down the street where I live.
Greg: That’s so funny. It’s funny you said that because we’ve done some great properties in Dallas. I’ve done pretty well there, but we’ve also had some decent deals, nothing crazy. Then in New York, we did two properties in like two months, and the margins we made on these things by closing on them we’re like just way, way bigger than I’ve ever seen. It was like a bell was going off in my head. I go, what if I just do like lower volume, and take these to the finish line, and I could just do it here.
Then I make way more money, and I know the area so well, and I’m just like wow, look at that. A little bell went off in my head. So it’s funny how it all comes around full circle, you know?
Matt: Totally. Totally. What’s your best source for off-market deals at the moment?
Greg: Oh great question. Two of them… three, can I give three?
Matt: Yes. I’m sure nobody will be mad at you for doing that.
Greg: Number one is going after these tougher properties, and when I say tougher properties, a lot of your return mail. So when you get postcards back in the mail and they say vacant on them. Obviously, they didn’t go to the house for a reason, because they’re vacant. Going after those types of properties, vacant houses that are on multiple lists. A lot of the times these sellers aren’t even alive
And they look like they’re alive on paper. But when you actually do run a skip trace reports, they’re deceased. Now that’s basically probate of lead that no one knows about. And so when you contact those heirs, there are not that many people speaking to those other sellers. Maybe one or two but not like 10. So skip tracing vacant houses is my first one. The second strategy, I still love and it can get a little expensive but is just consistent is direct mail niche lists to vacant lists, to tax delinquent lists and then to also lists where I like the area, so like zip codes that I know I can buy and hold or zip codes where it’s high end. Direct mail to specific lists.
And then the third one it just can’t seem to go away is bandit signs. I mean, you put those bandit signs out consistently, and I stopped doing them for a while once I moved out here. But the thing I like about bandit signs is that they are a little, you know, I guess, I don’t know the word for it, they’re little just kind of maybe ugly to put out or whatever. But the types of leads that you’re getting from a bandit sign, you’re getting an inbound lead. They’re calling you, you know what I mean? So you’re getting more motivation usually on bandit signs. So it’s almost like an SEO lead where they’re seeking you out and then they’re raising their hand and saying, hey I need some help. So bandit signs, direct mail and then skip tracing a lot of lists, you know, vacant lists, tax delinquent lists stuff like that. [crosstalk 00:29:14]
Matt: Who in the world would call this sign, someone that really needs a solution, right?
Greg: Exactly. You get those leads and you’re not going to get as many leads most likely. Like I like direct mail cause I can say if I send 10,000 units I’m going to get a half percent response rate and they get 30 leads and buy two contracts or whatever. Bandit signs are like, put out 50 signs, hopefully, I get some calls, out of those calls I’m gonna get some leads, out of those leads is going to be some offers and you know the drill. So those are my three, man. They’re just tried and true.
Matt: Pretty good. They come up regularly. What trend are you seeing in your business and how is it changing the way you operate?
Greg: Yeah. So in my business right now, I read a book, I want your listeners to definitely check it out if you ever listen or read it too. It’s called Confessions of A Real Estate Entrepreneur by Jim Randall. It’s probably the best real estate book I’ve ever read. And really the theme of that book that I got and it’ll go into the trend I’m going to share is that, if you can buy properties on one pricing strategy and then sell them on another pricing strategy, you can make a lot of money and a lot of the times you can beat out a lot of your competitors. And an example of that would be like if you can buy, for example, an apartment building, right? Let’s say you buy a three or four family, okay? And it’s valued at a three or four family and then you can take that apartment building and convert into condos and then sell those condos as individual units [inaudible 00:30:32] on a multiple of the square footage and now you just changed the paradigm of the building.
So that’s stuff that I’m looking more into as I get a little bit more advanced into this business. So I think being a trendsetter, kind of trying to changing the paradigm of buildings, getting into rezones, things like that. I’m just trying to always have my mind open, but at the same time, keeping my focus on what’s working right now, to like kind of try some different types of deals and then some of those deals you can hit it out of the park. Like, if we pull this land deal off and we sell this big lot to a builder and we make the spread, I’m [inaudible 00:31:05] wow, now this is something I can start to target and then I can start to do this more consistently. So just always being aware of how to really look at deals from different angles. And then sometimes you can look at a deal one way and then all your competitors are looking at it a completely different way. And then if you can buy that property, add the value and resell it, you can a lot of times paying more than other people because you’re doing a completely different strategy than the other guys were trying to do. Because they just trying to offer 50 cents on the dollar.
Matt: Absolutely key. Get it under contract so you can do that type of due diligence, right?
Greg: I [inaudible 00:31:34] up with a contingency. That’s the thing. He has a [inaudible 00:31:36]
Matt: Of course.
Greg: With the contingency and do your homework. Did the more homework, the better, you can’t go wrong.
Matt: Sweet. What has been the biggest win you’ve had in the last 12 months?
Greg: Like financial win or in business or anything.
Matt: Your business win.
Greg: Okay. Probably hitting a specific business… Like I had a number I wanted to hit financially and it was actually a little bit higher than I thought. Like I set it at one number and then my buddy was like, dude, you got to crank it up a little bit, come on are you serious. And I’m like, all right, fine, whatever. And I did it and I like hit the goal like super early, like three or four months before the year was over. And the reason that was the biggest win is it wasn’t from one specific deal, it was from the consistency of these deals, is because it showed me that I can set a goal, get focused on the goal, and then achieve the goal. And then that feedback loop fires back saying, wow, if I can set my goal and do that and I can do that three months early, well I can set a higher goal next time and I can learn and grow and evolve and then I can just keep doing that over and over again.
So it’s probably setting my personal income goal and then achieving it early and then seeing that like realize… Because I remember when I was first writing it down, it seemed too good to be true. I’m like, oh, I don’t know if I could do that. Like it’s crazy. All the doubt comes in your head and then when you actually do it and it becomes reality, it’s like, oh my God, I can do anything, you know, within reason.
Matt: Right. Well, they say success is a terrible teacher. So what has been your biggest mistake in the last 12 months?
Greg: It’s actually the same thing. So after I hit that goal-
Matt: That happens. That’s funny.
Greg: I was like smiling when you said that. I’m like, oh God. So I hit that goal, moved to California, and I didn’t set any more goals. I thought I was the man, look at me, I’m in La Jolla, blah blah blah. And I was like miserable. It wasn’t like depressed or anything, but I was completely miserable, I was so unmotivated, I was like, Oh, now what? You know, I could set and achieve these goals and I just felt very empty. And the reason I felt empty is because my life was so out of balance. All I cared about were these business goals and they were good, you know, for a lot of things but they are really bad because my personal life, my relationships, just doing the things that matter, like calling my parents consistently and just meeting and networking with people it was so out of balance and I was all business and it showed me like no matter how much money I make, I need to have other areas of my life be just as important.
So I need to be a good person, I need to be a giver, I need to be a contributor, I need to be a good brother, a good son, right. And that goal, you know, financially it was good, but it showed me that I had to get other areas in my life in balance and now I have like my weekly checklist. It’s like there are other things on there besides business. Like, go give back to somebody, go help a new investor out, go call your grandparents. Things like that, that I was not doing. And it was like, oh my God dude. Like what do you want all this money for, right? Like to just be a miserable dude achieving goals. So that was a great lesson. It was tough to learn, but now it’s like it changed the way I think about everything.
Matt: Yeah. It’s easy for entrepreneurs to fall into that trap because you become so consumed and it’s no longer a 40 hour work week, It’s pretty much 24 hours a day cause you’re always thinking about it.
Matt: It’s easy to get detached from the things that are outside of the business, right?
Greg: Exactly. It’s like, why do we do all these things? I like this stuff. I think real estate investing is fun. So for me, it’s not like work but still, I had to really just shape up the other areas of my life because they were out of balance and yeah. It was a challenge and I’m still working on it today, but I think it was definitely a good thing that happened and I’m grateful that I was aware of it. Like I could have been like, oh, whatever. Like I don’t need that. But I was like, no, I need to make a change. And I made the commitment to make the change and now a lot of things have improved.
Matt: That’s fantastic. What’s in the future that has you most excited and why?
Greg: Yeah. Definitely just kind of growing my business and getting into more like bigger advanced deals I’d say because that Confessions Of A Real Estate Entrepreneur book really sparked my interest in a little bit more commercial real estate, bigger stuff. Just to kind of thinking, into more advanced deals. So I really want to start to get myself into more bigger deals and my goal this year is to do at least one commercial deal, buy and sell it or buy and hold it. So really I’m looking to scale my business like on the commercial side and get into that realm of the business. And just kind of keep learning and growing and making sure that my big thing for me is like working on myself, right? Like there’s a Jim Rohn quote, like, if you work hard at your job, you’ll make a living, If you work hard on yourself, you’ll make a fortune. Just keep working on myself, increasing my business, and also growing my podcast. I just started a podcast a couple of weeks ago and-
Matt: Oh fantastic.
Greg: [inaudible 00:36:01] turn outs.
Matt: Sweet, what’s the name of the podcast?
Greg: It’s called Pave The Way Podcast-
Matt: Pave The Way. It doesn’t sound like it might be exclusively real estate.
Greg: No. Yeah, so it’s real estate, business, and entrepreneurship. So, over the last couple of years, I was able to form a pretty cool network of a group of people and I learned a lot from them and as I grew my network, I started reaching out and getting interviews going. So I figured I’d launch this show. And it’s really geared for people who are maybe my age, maybe they’re in their young twenties, mid-twenties, and they want to figure out how to do this kind of stuff, right? Because a lot of people my age, they’re just in college, they never heard of this stuff. So I’ve been using that shows as a way to kind of give back. And yeah, that’s been fun. You know, the whole podcasting thing, it was a big learning curve, but now I’m starting to get the hang of it. So yeah, I’ve been looking forward to doing those weekly shows.
Matt: Sweet, so yeah, check out, Pave The Way podcast available wherever podcasts are played. Is that right?
Greg: Yeah, I’d say iTunes is the best [inaudible 00:36:54] Yeah, iTunes.
Matt: Totally, perfect. Alrighty. So if anyone wanted to get in touch with you, what would be the best way for them to do that, Greg?
Greg: Sure, sure. They could reach me on Instagram @grego, G-R-E-G-O underscore 37. Once again, @grego_37 or they can email me at [email protected]. That’s my real estate company, Greg velocityhousebuyers.com. Will be happy to help them anyway, I can.
Matt: Super. And speaking of giving back and helping, I’ve got this course coming up. I’ve got two students that are both seven-figure earners, I think one of them is about to approach eight. He’s really crushing it. Neither of them has any aspirations to become a guru, but they kind of had this need to give back as well. And they asked me to come and help them put this together and host it for them. It’s at wholesalingvirtually.com. We’ve got a private Facebook group that we’re going to set up for it. Would it be cool if I added you to that, Greg, and you could chime in and support the students of that course?
Greg: Absolutely. I’d love to help any way I can for sure.
Matt: Yeah. I can tell by the way you’re speaking and after talking to them, you guys are really doing it and you’ve got it down and you’ve been successful on virtual markets. It’s something a lot of people look into very much for the same reason that you did. They all have little bit different reasons for their home market as to why they’re looking outside. I’ve always tried to discourage people because they always come back home, right? But if they’re going to do it, I want to make sure they got good advice and they get it done right. And they don’t fall for one of those push button things that you see out there. Like, sit on the couch, eat Cheetos and watch your mailbox fill up. Thank you for accepting that invitation. So if you’d like to take a look at that, it’s at wholesalingvirtually.com. It’s just kind of a coincidence that these two subjects coincide and aligned, so it just seems natural to talk to about it.
Greg: And the whole thing with virtual is like I did it too because I wanted to move to California, right? So I needed to have my business be virtual and I’m like I might as well go on to Texas to and not have to worry about these lawyers for now. But the thing is funny like it is cool to be able to do it. It’s almost like, everyone wants to be their own boss so they could choose to work or not have to work. It’s like a virtual thing. It’s cool because you could do it remotely if you want to. So if you want to live in Hawaii, you can live in Hawaii and do your deals, but then if you don’t want, or you can just go back to your own market.
So it’s kind of like you have to get that itch, scratch that itch and then once you do it, you’re like, should I stay here or should I not do this. So it’s kind of like something you have to check off. At least for me, it was.
Matt: Right. Yeah, you’ve got to satisfy your curiosity and scratch that itch.
Greg: That’s it.
Matt: Greg. It’s been an absolute pleasure. Good luck with your podcast. Everybody go check out Greg’s podcast Pave The Way podcast. Super good dude, I wouldn’t have had him on the show unless he was. Let’s do this again. Let’s stay in touch.
Greg: Absolutely, man, it’s been an honor to be on your show. It’s [inaudible 00:39:37] be a guest on your show. I’m really honored because this is the first podcast [inaudible 00:39:40] to be a guest three and a half years later. It’s like mind blowing man. Because I remember when I first met you in person I’m like, oh my God, it’s Matt. Now we’re talking now and now we’re friends. So it’s a funny man. So I’m really grateful for this opportunity for sure.
Matt: You Bet. Thanks, partner. Good luck to you. Alrighty. So until next week, God bless to your success, I’m Matt Theriault living the dream. Take care.