Newbie - 50K, Atlanta, 3-6 month time herizon, no debt, any advice ?

First let me say thanks for any advice you may have.

I have tried reading through a few posts but still feel somewhat lost. Can anyone explain to me (really concisely because otherwise it goes over my head) how a person in my situation would safely enter the real estate market here in Atlanta ?

Do I need to go to an official course ? A seminar ? A particular book ? If so which one?

Please point me in the right direction. Also, I work 2 jobs so that money is for investment only - it’s not my emergency fund.


Have you read some of the articles on this site on the left side? What type of real estate investing are you interested in?

You do not need to go to a course or seminar.

Are you looking to buy and hold properties or buy and flip?

Can you point me to those articles ?

I’ve tried reading a few posts. Some are overwhelming but what caught my attention were a few that speak of acquiring properties for 65k or less… I was under the impression that I needed to have a lot more- like hundreds of thousands.

In any event, I would be interested in any 'kind of real estate" for my first time. I’d just like to start investing and stop saving and I’m not so thrilled about the long-term investments right now.

A flip would be a great experience for 3-6 months.
A rental property would be acceptable also.

Can someone tell me if my perspective is right ? Do I have enough money ? My credit score is about 690. I have no debt.

I was just speaking about the articles on the left side of the screen under “Investor Information”

Ready about certain techniques can be overwhelming when you are first starting out.

But, in reality it is not too complicated.

Most of the action today is in Bank Owned/REO properties because prices have come down so much in certain areas and banks don’t have an emotional attachment to homes.

You can definitely purchase properties for 65k or less…some parts of the country you can find homes for under $30,000. The price of a price isn’t really important, what is important is the deal that you are getting. For example, If you can buy a home for $60,000 in an area where comes consistently sell for $110,000 that is a good deal (depending on what type of work it needs of course) .

You should view it like buying any item, getting a great discount makes it a great deal.

As an investor you don’t want to pay the “market value” for a property. So you have to find properties that you can buy at a discount. They will be at a discount because they need work or the seller needs to sell quick and you negotiate a good price.

Sounds like you have 50,000 cash to work with? That is enough to get started.

Start looking for deals in your area. You can post the deals here and people will let you know if it’s a good deal or not. You need to make sure that you don’t get into a bad deal where you will lose money.

A new investor with $50K burning a hole in their pocket can be a dangerous combo. Play it safe. Before jumping in feet first, before buying anything, before losing your capital, slow down a bit and do a little research. Find a strategy and technique you want to utilize to start your new career. Then do just one deal, learn from it, and move on to the next. And invest without using much of your own cash. It can be done using options and lease options, for example.
Good luck.

The first concern that I have is the 3-6 month time horizon. Investing with money that you will need or want in 3-6 months could leave you willing to take a huge loss in the name of harvesting money. A flip requiring any work at all is probably not a good first step. Why are you “not so thrilled about long term investments right now?” A long term competitive return on investment can prove to be one of the best ways to wealth.
If you would like general real estate experience, you could become an agent, broker or appraiser.
If you would like to flip property, you should know a lot about construction, including building technique, costs, and management.
If you want to become an independent rental owner, I think that there are other folks on this site who can show you how to do this carefully and profitably, but I don’t think this is a 3-6 month proposal.
Good Luck

You’re correct about the feeling of it burning a whole in my pocket but I’ve always wanted to invest - not save. I really don’t know where to start. I have some in cash in brokerage account but haven’t pulled the trigger lately. I’ve purchased some real estate and investing magazines and books but I just dont know where to really begin.

Am I missing something?

Ofcourse I’ll want the money, but I won’t need it in 3-6 months. I would just really like to start learning to invest. I feel like I can do it but don’t know where to start. So it sounds like you’re telling me to a course, correct ? I can definitely do that but I would prefer one that someone has attended and can recommend from this site. So many of them seem like just another source of income for the person giving the course…

“Give me $4000 and I can show you how I made $10,000,000”

Well obviously, if they’re charging that much for the course, they’re making a lot of money.

I’m not lazy. I work really hard actually but there’s more out there and I feel like I can do it. I want to be part of a flip, or a rental, or just walk through it with someone it won’t seem so impossible. I saved this money thinking it would be great to invest. Now I feel like it’s not enough to invest with.

By the way, where are these mentors everyone speaks of ?

Thanks for the advice by the way.

You can try your local Real Estate Investment Club. It shouldn’t cost you much to join that. Maybe there would be someone there willing to show you the ropes and work through a deal with you?

Seems to be good advice , not to make a bunch of money on your first deal , but to focus on not losing money on your first deal.

The advice of others of not risking your money (or very little) is good. Especially in this market you need to be careful as most markets are depreciating…but that doesn’t mean people aren’t making money on flips and buy and hold properties.

Do you know anyone in your family or any friends that have successfully invested in real estate?

Nope unfortunately no one I know is an investor but I will look into the “real estate clubs” link on the left side of the page. Thanks.

There’s plenty of good advice on here. Be wary of who you emulate in your local area. So far, the houses we’ve taken over recently have had tenants on “verbal” leases. That’s not the way I want to do business. Don’t pay for an overpriced course. There have been plenty of people on here who wished they didn’t pay for a seminar. Use that money for your first deal. Read the forums on here that interest you. Start with the oldest posts and work up to current ones. Then it’s easy to keep up with new activity on here.


Those mentors that you are looking for are right here on this site!

The guy to help you find a first place to invest is right there, too. It’s you.

If you read the newspapers, call on “For Rent” and “For Sale” signs in an area you like, nearby, you can learn a ton. Start taking notes. Get a map. Pretty soon you are an expert on values in that area. Spend some hours, some days, doing this. There aren’t any shortcuts to recognizing a good deal other than knowing your market. Drive around. Become an expert. Be comfortable in the area. Personally, I would live in any area I would buy in, that’s my comfort level.

Now you can drive down the street and immediately recognize a new sign! An open house! A “For Sale By Owner” ad! Then you become the expert. The good deal will just jump out at you. Ask around, if you go to the hardware store, ask the clerk, “I’m an investor, do you know anyone who needs to sell their house?”

If you do all this a good prospective deal will bobble to the surface and then you put it right on REI CLUB and everyone will mentor you!
You are so lucky to have this resource that I never had.


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Where exactly are you located in Atlanta?

We do business all over the Atlanta metro area, let me know
and maybe we can network.

What exactly are you trying to do? Invest for the long-term
or short-term?

Are you looking to do this as a passive investment or eventually
go full-time?


You seem to be quite confused about real estate investing and I believe that you would benefit from a comprehensive beginner’s course. I would recommend looking on e-bay for the Carleton Sheets “No Money Down” course. You can probably find one for VERY little money. Try to get one with all the bonus videos included. The Carleton Sheets course isn’t everything that you need to know, but it is a very good start and is presented in a logical manner. That’s where I suggest that you start.

Once you’ve completed that course, then you might have a little better idea of the particular area of real estate you want to pursue; i.e. flips, rehabbing, rentals, etc.

I would caution you right now - THERE ARE A MILLION PEOPLE THAT WANT TO TAKE YOUR MONEY! BE VERY CAREFUL who you listen to and don’t give anyone money for bootcamps, seminars, mentoring, or coaching unless you ABSOLUTELY KNOW that they can provide the information you need. My rental property business has allowed me to semi-retire in only a few short years and I can tell you that I have never paid a “guru” for any of their expensive nonsense. There are no “SECRETS” to real estate investing and I would automatically eliminate anyone as a real investor if they promise to reveal the “secret” of success to you.

My suggestion is to get that Carleton Sheets course and learn the basics. Then, join your local REIA (Real Estate Investor’s Association) and make friends with the SUCCESSFUL investors in your area. Your new friends will be happy to help (mentor) you for free. Leave your checkbook and credit cards AT HOME and don’t fall for any “guru” schemes.

Good Luck,



I think Mike (post below) brings up some good points. You certainly need to start by educating yourself so when you decide to take action (which is the most important part), you do not learn by the “school of hard knocks”.

Ideally if you could attend a seminar or bootcamp, you will learn the most in the shortest amount of time. These days you can even find free (or low cost seminars).

If you cannot attend a seminar or bootcamp then read as much as you can online (forums, articles, etc…) It’s free and you would be surprised how much you can learn.

Ultimately you are going to learn by doing so consider getting a mentor and/or modeling someone successful.

Hope this helps.

Alex Pardo

Be careful of people trying to “upsell” you to the next level in those seminars. As Mike said, there are no secrets. You can pretty much learn everything you need to know in these forums and if you don’t find answers to all your questions - ask here. Seminars and bootcamps are not required or necessarily good ideas in order to get you started. Do you want to be taught by people who are DOING REI or people who are SELLING INFO?

I have been reading plenty of books on all different aspects of REI (anything that seems down-to-earth, rather than a sales pitch). And the threads and articles on this site are great sources of information. I have my first local REI meeting coming up to attend.

The only information that I can’t seem to get a hold of without buying a course is the actual contracts and tips on modifying them. I see them for sale, but I don’t know which contracts to use and best practices for the different strategies. What is a good source for this information?

Here’s the thing. You must know what you are doing when filling out contracts yourself. To get contracts and in depth instructions, I had to get a course when I first got started. It was either that or hire an attorney, which I definitely did not have the funds to do that.

Unless, someone here is willing to give you contracts and walk you through them, a good course would be your best bet.

It also doesn’t hurt to search online, Google, for free real estate contracts. Also, check with your Real Estate Commission for their contracts. They’re free. Maybe ask a realtor to help you walk through the contracts. The best bet if you don’t want to purchase a course would be to get your states real estate contracts, set aside at least 1-2 hours and sit down and read through the whole thing. You’ll be surprised at how easy it is to really understand it once you actually focus on what the contract is saying…

Jeff Corpuz

There are contracts in the Carleton Sheets course. I started with them and kept improving them as I went along. You might also check with members of your local REIA. They’ll almost certainly give you copies of their contracts and forms.

Good Luck,