Real estate can be a very hectic business. There are often many projects going on all at the same time, and every one of them needs attention right this second.
I can be a “Ready…Fire! Aim…” kind of guy, so it was important for me to learn how to manage (or at least try to manage) my day effectively. I’ve read a ton of articles about time management, have tried a billion different methods — and have come upon seven steps that I (try) to implement into my daily routine to help me buy more real estate. They are as follows:
7 Steps for Higher Daily Productivity in Real Estate
1. Add four real estate agents to a contact list.
I always consider myself “in the market” for a real estate deal. If an agent brought me a good deal, then I would do everything in my power to go out and find the capital for it.
The key is to have agents bring you deals or new listings. I started keeping a spreadsheet of all the agents I have done deals with in the past or who I have met. Any time an agent gives me a business card, they are added to my list.
I start with a follow up email saying what type of deals I’m looking for and telling them a little bit more about myself. Then I make sure to follow up at least every two weeks and check in to see if there are any deals they have that would be interesting to me.
Most times agents are very receptive and welcome having an investor in their back pocket in case a deal requires all-cash or a quick close. Aside from giving you the opportunity to buy more deals, it is a really great way to expand your network. You never know what opportunities may come up.
Your daily task is to add four people to this list.
2. Prioritize your money.
If you want to buy real estate deals, the harsh reality is that it usually takes a chunk of your own change. Yes, you can find investors, but the more money they put in, the better terms they get. Ideally, you want to put in a significant amount yourself. This will make the investors more comfortable and also hopefully make you more money in the long run.
In order to have money to invest in real estate deals, you likely need to sacrifice in other areas. Yes, being frugal by eating in, not buying the new car and spending less on iTunes helps. Still, I have found that the real key for me has been to not invest (at least as much) in other areas.
For example, for a long time I was having a lot of money taken out of my paycheck and put directly into a 401K investment plan through work. There are a lot of benefits to investing in a 401K, and I’m not saying you shouldn’t. I just decided that real estate was my priority and stopped putting as much money in the 401K so that I could save for my next rental property.
Many people are in a situation where they live paycheck to paycheck, and saving seems impossible. I have lived most of my life that way, even when I did own real estate with an investor. My advice is to start saving a little bit — hell, even $10 a week. But make sure that it is actually saved, and not dipped into the next time you want to go to dinner at the new restaurant in town.
Eventually, you will make more money — you simply have to believe that — and when you do, you will already have the saving skills ready!
Your daily task is to not spend money on something frivolous and to put that money into an account that you don’t touch — except for real estate purposes.
3. Plan your day the night before.
I stole this one from good ol’ Ben Franklin.
Ever find yourself sitting in front of the television on Sunday evening wondering where the day went? Happens to me all the time — particularly since the advent of NFL RedZone! Oftentimes, I will have gone out on Saturday night and not planned what I want to do on Sunday, which makes it easier for me to get drawn into the commercial-free black hole known as internet streaming television. Maybe for you it’s not football — maybe it’s doodling or sleeping.
None of these things are inherently bad, but they don’t help you buy more real estate.
I am the most productive when I plan my day out. Your plan may never be perfect, but you will be in a way better spot than if you didn’t plan anything at all. It’s too easy to get off on a tangent. I plan what I’m going to eat, what I’m going to do, what I’m going to accomplish and even sometimes what I’m going to wear!
Yes, I know I may have some control issues, but the point is that a plan will improve your productivity as you head towards the goal to buy more real estate.
Your daily task is to plan your day the night before.
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