"You will be surprised how far a handshake and a relationship will take you in this business.”
Dallas, Texas – Seven local investors spent an hour digging into the local Dallas-Fort Worth real estate market this past Saturday, February 24, 2018, at the Think Realty National Conference & Expo. The Local Market Panel, hosted by Cathy Crowe of All Star Home Group, consisted of local experts from all areas of real estate:
- Gaylene Lonergan, partner at the Lonergan Law Firm
- Joe Boston, founder and leader of Dallas REIG
- Ron Carlson, Renovation Gurus
- Russ Keith, founder of Access REI
- Adonis Lockett, founder of My RE360 and Lockett N Homes
- Amy Sayre, Residential Loan Servicing
The group spent a great deal of time addressing an issue facing all investors looking for real estate deals in the Dallas metroplex: inventory scarcity. Surprisingly, most agreed that the additional cost in terms of time and money necessary to generate leads near the metroplex was worth it to continue investing in the metro area. “If it doesn’t touch the metroplex, I don’t buy it,” said Brown, although he added that he has a number of students buying rental properties and fix-and-flip deals farther out, such as in Wichita Falls.
Finding Deals: Strategies Vary
Carlson stated his rule for buying properties was even simpler than Brown’s. “If I don’t know where the city is, then I don’t buy there,” he said. “If I don’t have a team there or my contractor won’t go there, then I don’t buy there. I don’t want to have to build a new team when there are so many opportunities in Texas where I am already prepared to invest.” Sayre felt similarly, even though her main business involves seller-financing notes and generally creates far fewer maintenance responsibilities for her than a landlord or a fix-and-flipper. “The last time I owner-financed a property far away from me, I just kept thinking, ‘I don’t want to go down there if something goes wrong,’” she explained. “I eventually sold the note.”
Crowe, however, disagreed. “My philosophy is different,” she said. “Have car, can travel. Have computer, will search. I am licensed in Texas and I go everywhere.” She noted that this philosophy, which recently has led her to invest in a number of properties in Dennison, Texas, helps her find deals at lower price points. “You hear most investors talking 70- and 75 percent. I’m a 65- or 60 percent type of girl, so I have to go farther out to find deals that make sense to me,” she explained. Many large companies hiring in the DFW area are currently offering commuter allowances to enable their workers to own homes in outlying areas.
Key: Building Relationships
The group all agreed that regardless of personal real estate investing philosophy, the most important facet of any real estate business is the relationships an investor builds. “You will be surprised how far a handshake and a relationship will take you in this business,” observed Lockett. Keith agreed, but added that educational activities, which often go hand-in-hand with networking and relationship building, are also integral to success. “If you just know bits and pieces of information, you are just going to get bits and pieces of profit,” he warned. “Paying for a good education is a whole lot cheaper than going out and trying to invest without knowing what you are doing,” he said.
What is the most important relationship a real estate investor could cultivate? The group agreed: one with a good real estate lawyer. “Those great deals you will get sometimes will have a lot of ‘hair’ on them,” observed Lonergan. “It is not always going to be simple to get the title to that property. You need a real estate attorney to help.”
Read more Think Realty event coverage at https://thinkrealty.com/articles