Finding good deals?

Where can a newbie, such as myself, find a good deal? Are you using real estate agents mostly or subscription type websites? If you mostly use real estate agents, how do you pick one? What do you tell them to get them to call you when a good deal arises? PLease letm eknow know of any other tips or tricks you use to find good deals.

Thank you.

Direct mailing, bandit signs, handing out business cards, word of mouth, knocking on doors, finding vacant and run down houses… to name a few.

There’s plenty of great info on this site about how to find deals. Read a bit… :slight_smile:

jls944 - when my wife and I first thought about investing in real estate we chose an area that we liked and drove around few weekends trying to identify empty houses or run-down houses. We figured that some of the owners would be motivated sellers. We wrote down the addresses (probably 50 or 60 of them). We would do it during the weekend. At night I went online to search for the owners in the County Assessor and/or Treasury websites. I then sent them a postcard stating that I was a real estate investor and that I was interested in buying their house. I probably sent 50 or 60 postcards over a period of 2 weeks. Some of the owners were out of state. I got few phone calls - 2 or 3 asking me to not send them postcards again… :O(

One was interested in selling. He called me at the office and I could not talk with him immediately. He told me he was going to call me back and never did… I guess I was not ready to handle the actual buying… I invested all my time planning and executing the marketing, when I got a call I didn’t really know how to handle it… :O(

I decided to get my real estate license and rethink my strategy… I am activating my license on July 1st. Will get access to the MLS then. I am planning to look for expired listings or houses that have been on the market for a long time. Also I will be looking for REOs and houses that need fixing up (I believe they call them handyman specials… :O). I am planning to find my first investment property on the MLS.

Right now this is my plan - not sure if it will work. I guess I will know pretty soon. I wanted to share my plan in case it gives you some ideas/inspiration.

Good luck!

As a general rule, really good deals come from motivated sellers. As a general rule, really good deals are not MLS listed properties.

For many years, I only bought foreclosure properties from the lender’s REO inventory. In the 80s and 90s, when HUD and VA were doing their own property management and marketing, I got lots of great deals. In 2004 and 2005, I got great deals with pre-construction properties.

Today, good deals can be found in preforeclosure properties.

My point is that real estate is a dynamic business. It is never static. You have to adjust to your market.

Thank you all for sharing your comments and experiences.