The Reason I Stopped Posting And My New Plan Of Action

Myself and friend Betty Masters at the LICN meeting in Leicester February 2012

So, why did I stop posting? Lots of reasons, but I suppose if I’m honest I kind of ‘lost faith’ due to having to go back to work after posting ‘I’ve sacked my job!’ in April last year.  To re-cap, I’d been intending to go full time as a property investor after handing in my notice in at the  NHS.

So, what went wrong? With hindsight I was a tad impulsive…but then i usually am…steam in full speed ahead, then think afterwards, this doesn’t always work for me but I don’t get put off lol! I’m a positive person and not afraid to take risks, however I realise the type of risks I SHOULD be taking should at least be calculated in some way and not ‘pot luck’ lol.

It’s been said many times before but ‘If you fail to plan, you plan to fail’ . I think that sums it up very well. It’s good to be positive and motivated but YOU HAVE GOT TO HAVE A PLAN. PRACTICE WHAT YOU PREACH SUZANNE!

I looked back at all the leads I’d sourced from my leafletting campaigns, there were lots of them, some of them uncontacted because I didn’t have time with working as well. Trying to do everything yourself is NOT a good idea,  I built the website, I designed the flyers, ordered them, advertised for distributors, delivered flyers to distributors, did the spot checks, answered the ‘Batphone’ when it rang, chatted and negotiated with vendors, visited them at home if need be, researched and typed up the comparables and sent out offers, called Estate agents, viewed properties, dealt with mortgage brokers and solicitors, attended property network meetings etc etc…as well as working 4 days a week and running a home!

Obviously this was all costing money and there wasn’t enough coming  in, our properties were cash flowing well but it wasn;t enough,  we had a home to run, bills to pay which were totting up, I got stressed and was forced to look for another job. I was offered a full time post as a Virtual Office Assistant in Market Harborough which I started in June 2011…..I hated it, I was cooped up in a small dark office for 9 hours a day, not moving off my chair with no lunch break, with the travelling it turned into an 11 hour day! I was rarely at home, my house needed a good clean,.

I felt stressed and I was designing more websites for SEO, Website Building, Leaflet Printing, and even one for marketing Gold iPhones (another idea of mine – which I roped my poor colleague into!) www.iphoneingold.com – anyone want one? See me at the end for a discount haha!

So what was going wrong? I was very busy doing ‘a bit of this’ and ‘a bit of that’ but I had no FOCUS.  I spent too much time half-heartedly trying to make money with lots of bright ideas instead of just sticking to what I know and am passionate about – PROPERTY! So that’s what I’m going to do from now on.

I’m surprised at how many views I’ve gotten on my blog over the past year considering I haven’t been posting and I also get a lot of new property investors contacting me asking questions (which I’ve been happy to answer) so this has given me a proverbial kick up the butt I need to carry on!  Plus, I’ve done all those property courses too, what a waste if I don’t use my knowledge, so, I’ve started regularly attending property network meetings, mainly the Leicester meets – East Midlands Property Meeting with Parmdeep Vadesha and the Leicester Investors Curry Night (LICN) with Rajesh Gohil. They are all great guys and very helpful, I’ve  realised how vital these meetings are to keep me motivated and on track, so thanks guys 🙂

I now have a ‘Plan’ in place and have started implementing it this week.  I’m going to do an EXPERIMENT and hope to get a couple of good leads as a result. I’m just off to my ‘Zumba’ class now so I’ll tell you all about my plans next time. Watch this space 🙂

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A Very Late ‘Happy New Year’ !

Hi again 🙂

I know it’s been some time since I last posted, Ok, almost a year, but I’ve just come back from the East Midlands Property Meeting with Parmdeep Vadesha, Richard Shepherd and Shimon Rudich and made an impulsive decision to start posting again – I’m sure there’s no one more impulsive than I am and there’s no time like the present!

Network meetings are essential for success in any field – for inspiration, meeting new friends, contacts and JV partners, sharing knowledge and ideas, gaining confidence in your abilities, learning from people who actually ‘Walk the Walk, adding new strategies to your list of ways to make money with property, and, most importantly for me, keeping up your level of motivation and determination, because without it you’ll come to a standstill…..like I did.

Before I explain why it’s been so long since my last post I’d just like to say that I hope you’ve all had a good start to 2012 and all your plans, hopes and dreams come to fruition. Are you busy sticking to all the goals you made at the beginning of the year? Well I hope so, unlike myself, but I do intend to start working on this, as from now.

I met some interesting and helpful people tonight as well as picking up more great tips from Shimon and Richard but I also realised from talking to new investors that I actually know a lot more about property investment than I give myself credit for, and I get a great sense of satisfaction from explaining investment strategies and helping these new people to understand how they work. So, I’m thinking to myself, ‘Why aren’t I practising what I preach’? ‘Why has almost a year passed by without me doing all this stuff I’ve spent time, money and energy learning?’ ‘What’s gone wrong?’

Well it’s late now so I’m going to sleep on it, analyse it a bit and continue this tomorrow….Goodnight for now 🙂

 

Why Are We Afraid To Sell Ourselves?

Selling is a people business

You have to be able to SELL

I’ve recently spent some time learning to ‘sell’ with the Wealth Dragons which took me right out of my comfort zone, but taught me how to cold call,  and, as I learnt so much from it I thought I’d share my experience with you.

Most people don’t like Salesmen and hate the thought of having to sell themselves or a product. Why is this?

The reason is that most of us are convinced that we can’t do it, or we don’t want to do it because we think that selling is inherently dishonest and salesmen are seen to be ‘conmen’ selling things to people that they don’t really want or need.

Do YOU like being sold to? If not, think about why you don’t like it. Do you worry you’re going to feel under pressure or end up buying something you don’t want, or are you afraid you’re going to hurt someone’s feeling by saying ‘No’?

The chances are that if you feel this way about salesmen and don’t like being ‘sold’ to then you won’t be very good at selling yourself.

I didn’t like the idea of selling one bit! I cringed at the thought and thought about all the times I’d answered the phone to ‘cold callers’ and been annoyed with them.

I didn’t want to bother people, selling felt like begging and I was worried people would be nasty to me or put the ‘phone down if I tried to sell them something.

It was pointed out to me that most people feel this way because of their mindset, we’ve been conditioned to think this way because of enduring years of ‘being sold to’ by the media, it’s made us highly suspicious of anyone that’s selling something.

The point is, that if you’re going to run a business, no matter how small, then you’re going to have to sell something at some point, or how are you ever going to make any money? So you need to change your mindset, and the way you think about sales.

Sales is a people business, you’re much more likely to buy from someone you like and trust, so if you’re selling to someone it’s important to build rapport as early as possible, find a ‘common ground’ and make them feel at ease with you. Don’t go straight into ‘hard sell’ mode, because that’s a sure fire way to lose the sale.

It’s also important you believe in your product with a passion, because if you don’t believe in it then how are you ever going to convince someone else to believe in it and buy it?

Not all salesmen are conmen, ok the bad ones might make a few bucks by being dishonest for a while, but word soon gets around then they lose their credibility fast. So if you want to build a brand name and a good customer base you have to be ethical with your deals and give people value for money.

Instead of thinking that you’re ‘bothering’ someone try considering instead how you may be helping that prospect improve his skills or business by giving him a fantastic opportunity, people always want to know ‘what’s in it for me?’ So tell them!

Knowing how to handle objections is crucial in sales. You wouldn’t believe just how many objections people can come up with!  Here’s just a few I was faced with (these are real!)

  • I’m riding a push bike and the police are following me
  • This is not my phone and it isn’t me
  • My wallet has just been stolen so I have no credit cards to pay with
  • My dog needs to go to the toilet
  • I can’t talk right now, I’m in a field being chased by a cow

Third Party Authority is a big one: ‘I have to discuss it with my wife/husband/partner before I make a decision’

Time is a common one: ‘I don’t have the time, I can’t make that day’

Price is another: ‘I can’t afford it right now’

There are probably hundreds of objections you can come up against and you have to be ready to answer them…or you lose the sale.

When I first started selling I found it very daunting, I was way out of my comfort zone, but I forced myself to do it because it was another learning curve and I don’t like to give up easily. I’ve had the phone slammed down and people swear at me, but eventually I became ‘immune’ to it all, took it in my stride and laughed it off, they didn’t know me,couldn’t see me and I didn’t know them, so I just went onto the next one.

The very first day I started ‘cold calling’ I made 5 sales! (and got to keep the money I made) I was amazed because I didn’t think I could ever do something like that, I was obviously very proud of myself, and the exercise reinforced my belief that you can do anything you put your mind to if you want to do it and try hard enough. You just have to be willing to make a start.

There was a hell of a lot more to it than this of course, I also learnt

  • Hooks
  • Open & closed questions
  • Negotiation techniques
  • Extensive objection handling
  • Seeding
  • Voice control
  • NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming)
  • Subjective language
  • Using scarcity
  • Test closing
  • Closing deals
  • Upselling

Learning all these techniques and understanding the psychology of how people think about sales has definitely helped me to have the confidence to make calls, sales and money! Another bonus is that these techniques can also be applied to other situations and used to my advantage whenever or wherever influence is required!

I’d like to thank Vincent Wong & John Lee, also Andy Brice (Sales Manager) and Laura Clapham (Admin) for all your expert tuition and help and the opportunities you’ve given me Thanks a lot guys!

So, to all you people who think you don’t have the ability to sell anything, or don’t believe in yourselves, think again, and remember..

 ‘Where you begin doesn’t matter. Your willingness to start is what counts’

(Rhonda Britten)

I’ve sacked my job!

No Worries!

Sorry I haven’t posted for a while, I’ve been sooo busy, but I have some great news!!!

Today I sacked my job! I handed in my notice to my boss at the UHL (University Hospitals of Leicester) as I want to devote more time to concentrate on building our property / marketing business.

I really don’t like to do things by halves, if it’s worth doing it’s worth doing well and I want to be able to put in 100%.

This is a BIG step for me, I’ve been wanting to do it for a long time but have been waiting for the ‘right moment’. Well I’ve realised that the ‘right moment’ will never come, there will always be some excuse as to why I can’t. It was one of my goals at the beginning of this year, so now I’ve done it and there’ll be no looking back 🙂

I’d like to say it was all off my own back but I have to give some credit to all the people I’ve been working and training with who’ve inspired me and given me confidence to believ in myself and do this.

I’ve done a lot of courses but the one’s that’ve really helped and given me the knowledge and courage to move on are Parmdeep Vadesha’s ‘Tycoons Mastermind Alliance’ (TMA) and  John Lee and Vincent Wongs Wealth Dragons. I’ve been doing a lot of training recently with the  Wealth Dragons and am feeling extremely motivated and raring to go, it made me realise I needed to take action to move forward towards my goal of being financially free.

I did things on the course that took me totally out of my comfort zone and despite feeling very uneasy at times I knew it was somehing I had to do to improve my confidence…..so I went for it!

I learnt a lot, came away feeling extremely focused and decided it was now or never, so bye bye job & hello to a more fullfilling future 🙂

Some people may think this is naiive of me and of course they’re entitled to their opinion (but they can ke ep it to themselves!) and I do have another source of income which I’ve lined up to replace my ‘wage’ so that’s not an issue.

It’s not about how much money you have to start up in this business (or in any business) it’s about your mindset, if you truly believe you can do something then you will do it, no matter what obstacles stand in your way. The main thing is to go out there and DO IT, stop putting it off and making excuses, because that’s all they are excuses. Take control of your life , becasue it’s now or never.

I’ve  been fortunate to have the opportunity to become business partners with a fellow friend and colleague, Vince Audritt who has excellent connections in the Online Marketing field, and we are currently working together to perfect our services and get our new site up and running.

Internet Marketing will be another ‘tool’ in my box which will enable me to build capital to buy more properties and the more tools you have in your box the more things you can ‘fix’. Each ‘tool’ is a different strategy, you just have to apply the relevant strategy each time an opportunity comes along 🙂

I’m a great fan of inspirational quotes and this one, I feel, sums up my post very well;

You can never cross the ocean unless you have the courage to lose sight of the shore.
Christopher Columbus

Why Your Biggest Challenge Is Yourself

How often have you envied someone who has done something amazing or made a success of their life?

 How often have you said ‘I wish I could do that’ or ‘I’m just not lucky enough’ or ‘he’s just lucky, that’s why he’s made it’?

 I’m sure we’ve all said this at some point, but do you ever stop and think why you don’t achieve more in your life?

 How many excuses have you made to others (and yourself) about why you can’t do something?

 I tell my daughter Summer that she’s not allowed to use the word ‘can’t’. Instead she has to say ‘I’ll try’. Yes, she moans whenever I say it, but she will always remember it, and it will stand her in good stead for the future 🙂

 Have you heard the saying ‘We are what we think’? Often, the way we think determines whether or not we will be successful in what we set out to achieve.

 So if you start off thinking you’re not capable of doing something, then guess what? You’ll probably never do it. You may as well not even try because you’ve lost the battle already!

 Many of the millionaire gurus practice NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming) which basically means that if think about something you want and really believe you will get it then your thoughts will manifest themselves into reality.

 The secret to their success is an ‘I can’ attitude. They don’t say ‘I can’t do it’. They say ‘HOW can I do it?’

 Now I’m not saying this is all you need, but it’s a great start! A positive attitude will go a long way and is what separates the successful people from the unsuccessful.

 It’s ok to try and fail. So you tried, and it didn’t work, but you don’t give up. You try another way, and then another until you make it work. There are many great people who tried, lost everything, then succeeded in getting it all back.

Thomas Edison’s teachers said he was “too stupid to learn anything.” He was fired from his first two jobs for being “non-productive.”

Thomas Edison. Invesntor of the light bulb
Thomas Edison

As an inventor, Edison made 1,000 unsuccessful attempts at inventing the light bulb.

When a reporter asked, “How did it feel to fail 1,000 times?” Edison replied, “I didn’t fail 1,000 times. The light bulb was an invention with 1,000 steps.”

 Negative Thoughts Produce Negative Actions

 Do you know someone who always seems to have ‘bad luck’ and whatever they do always seems to go wrong? This is not a coincidence at all, it’s down to mindset.

 They constantly tell themselves they’re unlucky and things will always go wrong….so guess what….that’s what happens!

 Positive thoughts produce positive actions. Give all your thoughts to what you want to achieve, see what you want in your mind, feel it, focus on it constantly as if you already have it.

 See yourself actually achieving your goal and you will be nearer to getting it.

 Did you know that 1% of the population own 96% of the worlds’ wealth?

 This is no accident, it’s not down to luck. These few people focused on what they desired, they believed in themselves and set out to get what they wanted. They are where they are today because of what they thought. There are other contributing factors but mindset is the most important.

 You can focus on the past and your previous disappointments, or, you can focus on your future and what you want to happen. So what’s it going to be?

 Because your biggest challenge is YOURSELF.

Armchair Property Investment. Is It for You?

What is ‘Armchair Investment’?

People choose to invest their money in many ways, ultimately hoping for a good return on their investment.  ‘Armchair Investment’ is another way of doing this, and simply put means that your money is invested with a company that  looks after your interests on your behalf with minimum input from yourself, leaving you free to get on with your life (and reap the benefits in later years!)

Obviously there are many fields you can choose to invest in but lets look at investing in property and how armchair investment features in this.

Why invest in property anyway?

The news is always full of doom and gloom regarding the property market which can be very off putting for someone who might be thinking of investing first time, and people tend to get carried away with the bad news instead of looking at the ‘bigger picture.’

On average and according to trend, property prices double every 7-10 years. (you can see this on the graph below)

Graph showing average house price increases from 1983 to present day

Yes, there’s an element of risk when you invest in anything but as the saying goes ‘nothing ventured, nothing gained’ so you need be aware and take calculated risks based on the current market.

We will always have ‘dips’ and ‘peaks’ where property prices plummet and then rise again, and in the ‘dips’ some people can find themselves in negative equity.  

This can happen when they’ve  bought or re-mortgaged just before the dip, as unfortunately no one can predict when this is likely to happen.

I don’t profess to be an expert on the property market but I can read a graph! So lets look at the ‘bigger picture’.  If you look at this graph you’ll see that although there have been ‘dips’ in house prices over the years, on average prices still double every ten years or so:

So if you had bought a property in 1983 for £30,000, even though prices started to dip in 1992 you can see that 10 years later in 1993 the value of the property had still risen to £60,000 (so it had doubled in value) and in 2003 it had risen to £120,000! (doubled again)

You can see that prices started to dip just after 2008 when the last reccession started, so if you were unlucky enough to buy a property then you may find yourself in negative equity today if you bought at full market value.

BUT even if you had bought at full value, as long as you’re not intending to sell the property right away, then eventually its value will rise again.

If you can, it’s best to buy property below market value but not everyone knows how to do this.

 House prices WILL rise again in the long term, so, despite the current property climate and all the negativity surrounding the subject, property is still one of the best ways to invest your money to be sure of a good return in the future as long as you intend to hold on to it long term.

Some people prefer to do their own ‘legwork’ when buying a property. This is great if you have the time, ability and the knowledge to do this. This would involve:

  • Advertising
  • Sourcing the property
  • Dealing and negotiating with Estate Agents
  • Negotiating with the vendor (seller)
  • Knowing how to assess the ‘condition’ of the property and spot building defects
  • Understanding the current property market and doing your own due diligence
  • Knowing the area you’re buying in
  • Knowing the property is in a good rental area
  • Applying for a mortgage
  • Dealing with brokers, solicitors and surveyors (and their fees)
  • Having the time to ‘chase’ the case’ to completion
  • Refurbishing the property to a good standard and having access to tradesmen to do this
  • Paying the mortgage until the refurbishment is done
  • Finding a tenant yourself or finding a reputable lettings agency to do it for you
  • Making sure the tenant is credit checked and referenced
  • Providing an AST (Assured Shorthold Tenancy) document for the tenant
  • Providing a detailed inventory stating the condition of the interior
  • Making sure the rent is paid regularly
  • Visiting the property regularly to ensure it’s being ‘looked after’ by the tenant
  • Dealing with maintenance problems and ensuring that any issues are resolved
  • Chasing the tenant for late payments
  • Knowing how to deal with an eviction if the need arises

These are just some of the things you need to be able to deal with when you decide to use the ‘hands on’ approach to property investment.  Of course this also involves using finance by way of fees and refurbishment but by far the biggest problem for most people is having the TIME to do it!

What are the benefits of  ‘Armchair Investment’?

If you realise the potential of property investment but aren’t the type of person who’s  happy with the ‘DIY’ approach, or you’re not sure how to go about it,  or just don’t have the time to do it all yourself then you should consider Armchair Investment.

If you have an idea of how much you want to invest and where, then an Armchair Investment company will do the rest. They will generally find you ‘below market value’ property and sometimes manage it for you.

Up to now I’ve preferred to source my own property and be ‘hands on’ and there has been some negative press in the past regarding some unscrupulous companies so I was quite sceptical about the idea of armchair investment.

That was until I spoke to a guy called Colin Parker who has a property investment company in the North East called ONE PORTFOLIO.  I first heard of Colin about a year ago after he answered some of my many questions on the Tycoons property forum (can’t remember which question – there were so many!) he was very helpful and I noticed he had a good reputation and was well respected by the other members.

I spoke to Colin on the ‘phone regarding a deal I was contemplating and he gave me some sound advice. After speaking with him for a while I discovered he offered an Armchair Investment service which he told me a little about, however I wasn’t really interested because as I’ve said, I was quite sceptical at the time.

I then spoke with him a couple of months ago and he invited me up to Newcastle to meet himself and his wife Karen who jointly run the company.

Like a lot of people, I thought properties in the North were all run down and the areas were in a state of disrepair and this was why property up there was cheaper. I couldn’t have been more wrong!

Myself with Colin and Karen Parker

First of all, I found that Colin and Karen Parker were very welcoming, warm and down to earth people. They are honest, hard working and proud that they offer a second to none investment service, but the one thing that stood out to me was their genuinely ethical approach to their investors.

They have built their company by showing respect and listening to what their clients actually WANT and their reputation for providing a great service is growing fast.

Most BMV companies will provide you with a property that’s 15-25% below market value and charge you a ‘finders fee’ (around 2 – 10 thousand pounds depending on whether the deal has been ‘packaged’ or not)

However, you have to be quick because these properties are sent out to everyone on the companies list. There’s no ‘having a look’  at the property before hand or getting your money back if the surveyor down values it!

Also, once these BMV companies have sold you a deal then that’s it, they walk away, and the rest is up to you! There’s no guarantees that it will stack, or that it will rent, or that it doesn’t need a lot of money spending to refurbish it.

If you were going to source property yourself, where would you look and why?  Well of course you’d look in your own area, because you’d know that area well, you’d know which are the good and the bad bits, you’d know whether the property was below market value and you’d know whether or not it was a good rental area and if you could find a tennant quickly.

Which is why ONEPORTFOLIO only source property in their own area in the North East, because they know this area like the back of their hand and they know which properties will provide great investments to their clients. In fact they’ve been doing it for years!

Why would you want to invest in the North East?

Contrary to belief, properties ‘up North’ are not all run -down shacks, and it’s not all cobbled streets and mass unemployment!

A lot of investors  from London and the surrounding areas choose to invest in the north because properties are  lot cheaper there and of course the yields are higher.

They’ve found that as long as they get the properties at a good price, they cash flow well and they’re managed well they can have a ‘hands off’ approach and most of them never even see the properties, they don’t need to!

Considering it was November when I went up to visit them it was cold, but the sky was blue and clear and Colin and Karen gave me a tour around the areas they buy property in.  Newcastle, Middlesborough, Sunderland and the surrounding areas, and I was pleasantly surprised at how neat and tidy the streets were and how much regeneration was going on.

As we were driving around Colin was giving a commentary on the history of the area, pointing out properties they’d bought for investors, talking about the regeneration projects and answering any objections I had. It was clear he knew his area very well indeed and I was very impressed with his knowledge and also his obvious passion for the area.

Properties sourced are valued between £50,000 and £150,000 and are purchased for between £40,000 and £120,000.  All properties can be purchased using buy to let finance so an investor would require a deposit of 20-25% of the purchase price. The typical investment required is around £20,000.

I loved Newcastle, it’s an amazing place with some great architecture. I took some photos of the types of property sourced by ONEPORTFOLIO and other landmarks whilst we were driving around:

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What ONEPORTFOLIO do is provide a personal service which is great value for money. Obviously there’s a lot that goes into making this a good service, but to keep it short, basically here’s what they offer:

  • You get a free one to one consultation with Colin who will invite you to have a look around the area so you can discuss your investment requirements and see the type of properties they source.
  • ALL properties offered will be GUARANTEED 20% below market.
  • When a property comes up that matches your requirements you will be offered it personally with a 12 page report on the property, it’s condition, rental & market value comparables, photographs, floor plans and any refurbishment that may be required.
  • If you decide to purchase, the mortgage will be arranged for you and a solicitor instructed on your behalf
  • A fully independent RICS survey will be instructed
  • On completion of the sale, if required, the property will undergo a FULL refurbishment.
  • ALL properties undergo a 192 point check list to make sure they are ready for renting and comply with safety regulations (Gas certificates etc)
  • A tenant will be found under strict guidelines, they will be credit checked and referenced thoroughly.
  • The property will be fully managed for you, so if there’s any problems with maintenance etc it will be dealt with swiftly.
  • NGU Lettings currently looks after 370+ properties for it’s investors.
  • All this leaves you to get on with your life – stress free!

Some Armchair Investment companies have asked up to £37,000 for this type of service but ONEPORTFOLIO require a reservation fee to show you are commited of just £485  (which is fully refundable if you change your mind)  Then a further payment of £4,500 on completion of the sale.

So the total arrangement fee is just £4,985 which includes ALL legal fees  (survey & solicitor) AND it includes a full refurbishment of the property if it’s required.

Their full managment service is just 10% of the monthly rental fee.

If you can find another reliable company that offers a service that’s better than this then please let me know!

After our drive around the area, which took up most of the day, I went back to my hotel to freshen up then met up with Colin and Karen in the evening where they showed me the nightlife in Newcastle.  Or “Let’s go oot on the toon” as Colin put it haha!

Although it was now raining,the bars were buzzing with people and vibrant. There was a great atmosphere and we had a lovely evening getting to know each other then had a sumptuous chinese meal before I was dropped off at my hotel, where I slept really well after a great day with good company 🙂

I can thoroughly vouch for Colin and Karen and their company ONEPORTFOLIO, they came across as genuinely honest and sincere people who have invested a lot of time building an ethical, value for money GUARANTEED service. Indeed, many of their investors have gone on to buy more than one property with them when they’ve realised what a great service they’ve received.

ONEPORTFOLIO Established 2007
‘Armchair Investment’ At Its Best
GUARANTEED Property Discounts
GUARANTEED Rental Income
GUARANTEED Money Back Offer
You Invest – We Do The Rest!
 
 If this sounds like something you’d like to discuss further please contact me: suzanne.bates@one-portfolio.co.uk

Happy Investing!

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How To Get On The First Page Of Google Without Trying!

A colleague of mine emailed to ask me if I’d seen a thread relating to my blog that had been posted onto the ‘Property Tribes’ forum (a place where like-minded investors share their experiences) It was posted in good faith by Vanessa, who runs the site along with Nick Tadd.

It appeared there was a debate regarding my intentions for writing this blog and it seemed that people were questioning my integrity (or so I thought)

I was at first disappointed at some of the negative remarks but on the plus side, all the interest actually increased my blog viewings by over 100% and the thread ended up on page one of Google! 

Google page one without trying!

Bad news sells Newspapers. People always want to know if you’ve been up to no good, it’s human nature.

Look at all the celebrities who get bad press, whether allegations are true or not, people still feel the need to know all the gory details, and the worse the news, the more publicity it gets. If one of them passes a driving test you may never hear about it, but if they’re found to be having an illicit affair then you can be sure it will be all over the papers the next day before they’ve even bothered to get the full facts. 

So anyway, initially I was a bit disappointed but after giving it some thought, I can totally understand that in this day and age with so many people being scammed in one way or other on the internet, people are often very likely to  interpret the unknown as being somewhat suspicious.   

I get scam emails all the time, and am flooded with people trying to sell me the next ‘amazing product’  they’ve come across. It’s very annoying and I certainly don’t want to be perceived as one of those people.

 
There were also suggestions that I may have been ‘coaxed’ into starting the blog to promote Parmdeep Vadesha’s Property course but I’d like to stress that this could not be further from the truth. I have a brain and I’m not afraid to use it!  (except when I’m using a Sat Nav lol)

As previously stated, the blog is simply my way of staying accountable and hopefully a guide for new investors, whereby I can share my experiences, mistakes and hopefully successes.

I am a down-to-earth, easy going, a little niave at times (don’t think I’ve spelt that right!) but I genuinely just want to be successful in the property field and help others to do the same and hopefully have some fun trying!

The ‘about me’ information although rather dysfunctional in places is the truth, and apart from the bit about losing my lovely Mum I wouldn’t change any of  it as it’s what has made me the strong person I am today. We all have ‘a past’ which ‘shapes’ us as people and builds our personalities but it’s the way we deal with what we’ve been through whether positively or negatively that determines how our lives will ultimately unfold.

I actually have quite a bad temper which has got me into a lot of trouble in the past (because I didn’t know when to keep my mouth shut!) but it’s got better as I’ve ‘matured’ so instead of  flying off the handle I now try to I find a way to turn it around to my advantage – and a good sense of humour definitely helps! 

Anyway, I’ve made some new friends on ‘Property Tribes’ and I met up with Rob Hubbard yesterday (one of the members who’d commented on the thread) who’s a really nice guy and he was very helpful. We had a chat, talked about our property experiences and said we’d keep in touch, which is what these forums are all about, making contacts and friends, sharing our information and knowledge to help each other succeed.

There was a reference to Jeremy Kyle on the thread, who, as most of you will know, is famous for his TV talk show where he interviews people who are, lets just say ‘slightly intellectually challenged’. As I said in my reply on the thread, I have watched it in the past and as laughter is certainly the best medicine, and to show I can laugh at myself I’ve produced this short clip which I hope you’ll enjoy:

If you’ve received this as an email please click on the picture to see the video!

Until next time, my very best wishes,

Suzie 🙂

How To Find Motivated Property Sellers Using Leaflets

If you’re looking to generate leads from motivated property sellers then leaflets are a must!

There are thousands of people out there who need to sell their property quickly for various reasons ie; financial reasons, repossession, stuck in a property chain, relocating, bereavement, divorce/seperation etc.

Distributing leaflets looking for motivated sellers (people who need to sell their property FAST) is a great way to get to these sellers BEFORE they actually call the Estate Agents. 

 By the time they’ve called the Estate Agent and got the board up it’s too late, the agents have already called their list of regular investors and the deal is gone.

It takes a long time to build up rapport, credibility and get a few completed deals under your belt with your local Estate Agents before you become worthy of being on their investors list.  Until you’ve done this you have no chance of getting the ‘juicy’ deals.

So what can you do? You find them yourself of course!

It’s a known fact that most people need to see something visual to encourage them to take action. So they may have been thinking about selling their property because they’re struggling financially but haven’t actually gotten around to doing anything about it yet.

So when a leaflet comes through their door saying “sell your property now for cash”  this may be all they need to kick start them into action. So YOU get a call before the Estate Agent does. It’s as easy as that!

This actually happened with more than one of the leads I’ve generated. One guy I went to see said he’d seen a programme on the TV about selling property and he started to discuss selling his own home with his wife as they’d been thinking of downsizing as they couldn’t afford the large house they were living in and were having financial problems.

As they were discussing it one of my leaflets came throught the door and they called me straight away! (obviously it was fate, wasn’t it?!)

Then there was the guy I helped with the Assisted Sale recently. This guy hadn’t paid his mortgage for almost a year and had ignored all correspondence from the bank, even though he knew he was in trouble and would eventually get the property repossessed.

The reason he didn’t take action was because he believed he’d have to pay Solicitor and Estate Agent fees to sell his property and he didn’t have enough income to do this. Again he received one of my leaflets saying “Financial problems? Repossession? Help is around the corner, call now and we will pay all your legal fees”  so he called me right away and I helped him to sell his property and also made a tidy sum myself at the same time.

I’ve had people call me from areas I haven’t even distributed to. This is because people may not need the service themselves but they pass the leaflet to someone who does. ie; a family member or friend, who may be on the other side of the city.

This happened to me when a guy called me saying he’d been given one of my leaflets by his daughter who lived in an area I’d recently distributed to. The guy wanted to discuss selling his house quickly because it had been on the market a long time. He had moved out to live with his girlfriend and just wanted to get rid of the responsibility of  paying the mortgage and have some extra cash available.

To cut a long story short, the house (a three bed detached Dorma in a nice area of Leicester) had been on sale for almost a year and had been reduced to £159,950. After negotiating with him for a week on and off I managed to get the house for £105,000!

The guy was happy to sell it and get his cash quickly and I got a bargain! It just needed a quick paint job which my hubby and I did ourselves then it rented out immediately. So not only did we make made over £50,000 in equity, we also get a cash flow of £245 per month. Nice one 🙂

How many leaflets should you start with?

It’s best to start with 5 to 10 thousand leaflets. The response rate isn’t great, but remember you only need ONE lead from the distribution to get your costs back and get a bargain property.

I usually distribute 10,000 at a time. It’s best to try and do this once every month, or at least every other month to be consistent. This way you can ‘measure’ your results better.

What’s the best size to use?

The best size is an A5 leaflet, which is half of A4. The leaflet can be single or double sided. I think it’s better to have them double -sided as they don’t cost that much extra and you can get more information on them.

How much does this cost?

Five thousand A5 double-sided leaflets can cost anything from £85 up to £165. Ten thousand can cost from £150 up to £290. (or more)

Note: The prices quoted are based on you supplying your own artwork. If you want the leaflets designing for you this costs extra. (Please ask me about this if you’re interested) I design my own leaflets using Photoshop, I actually enjoy it!  Or you can just use ‘Paint’ or a word document.

Samples of leaflets I’ve used (please feel free to copy and use for your own purpose)

                           

Who should you use to distribute them and how much does it cost?

I tried a few different methods. I used online delivery companies a couple of times but didn’t find them very reliable or cost effective. Also they mostly want to deliver your leaflet with 3 or 4 others at the same time. This isn’t a good idea as I’m sure you’ve had a stack of leaflets pushed through your door at some point and you’ve thrown them away?

It’s much better to have them delivered ‘solus’ (on their own) and delivery companies charge extra for this so it can work out expensive.

I just put an advert on my local ‘Gumtree’ site which is FREE saying something like ‘Leaflet Distributors Wanted. Great Cash Bonus Paid’ and I got LOADS of replies! Of course you have to be prepared to ‘filter out’ the time wasters etc. I send them an aplication form which is purposely quite detailed, because if  it’s too much trouble for them to fill in the form then they obviously wont be bothered to deliver the leaflets properly.

I’ve also put postcards in shop windows which is cheap and effective.

I’ve recruited leafletters in my own area when I’ve seen them actually delivering other people’s leaflets. One morning when looking out of my bedroom window I watched an old guy deliver leaflets to every house on the road at 7.30am in the morning. I thought to myself  “now this guy’s obviously dedicated and reliable,” and when he got to my house I had a chat with him and he’s become one of my most reliable distributors!

It’s best to have three or four distributors in different areas that don’t overlap so you know who to pay a bonus to when you get a lead that completes. I give them ‘log sheets’ to keep a record of what streets they’ve done and they also write down any houses that have a ‘For Sale’ or ‘To Let’  board so I can send ‘follow up’  letters to them later.

I’ve written up an agreement which I ask them to sign which says that they wont be paid if they are found to be ‘defrauding’ us! It also states they are delivering at their own risk and must be responsible for their own tax & insurance payments. (to cover me) If someone loses a hand as a result of being attacked by a large canine you don’t want to be held accountable do you!

I pay them £30 per one thousand leaflets they deliver and a bonus of £500 on completion of a lead. The bonus keeps them motivated and therefore they’re less likely to ‘dump’ the leaflets. It’s possible to deliver a thousand leaflets in a day depending on the type of property you’re delivering to.

Presently I have a few distributors, 3 or 4 of them are very reliable (one of them I recruited after he called me re selling his house and he’s become a good friend too) I’ve only had one so far I had to ‘sack’ because I found out he wasn’t doing the job properly. My husband Mike carries out ‘spot checks’ to make sure they’re done correctly BEFORE they are paid.

So it’s a relatively simple process  that anyone can follow. Obviously your leaflet has to be written in such a way that it looks like an ‘attractive offer’ to a would be vendor but I’ll talk more about this in my next post. So stay tuned!

If you’re thinking of distributing your own leaflets I can supply you with quality leaflets at a great price here: https://suziebates88.wordpress.com/quality-leaflets-at-a-great-price/

Happy Distributing Folks!

Take care,

Suzie 🙂

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