When you’re just starting in real estate investing, it can be daunting to consider the entirety of your home town (or nearest urban area). But it doesn’t have to be. You can get started by simply getting to know your neighborhood better!

Real estate investing has an equation.  Like any bit of “mastery” where the general populace thinks “easy” but never gets close enough to try (because really, where to begin?), real estate bargain hunting is an art (sales/negotiation) and a formula (the piece of the equation we will be discussing in this blog post).

How To Farm Your Neighborhood For The Ugliest, Most Perfect Fix and Flip Investment

Part of doing your first deal right (so you maximize your profit, minimize your upfront costs) is educating yourself about your market.  Too many in real estate are proactive and experienced for you to disregard qualifying yourself and extending your local knowledge.  The following information will give you a solid foundation to build upon until you get in your groove and can assess a property’s value without even seeing it.

Drive the Area

Spend a few weeks looking around at homes in the area.  Look at their construction, learn the average prices.  KNOW YOUR MARKET.

Attend Open Houses

When you visit open houses on the weekend, you get a chance to network with the real estate agents (have you partnered with one yet?)  and owners (bring your business cards-word of mouth referrals are the most powerful).  You will become familiar with the typical architecture, pricing and property features in the neighborhood.  You will better understand property values and house styles.

Find Vacant and Ugly Properties

When you are driving around, look for places with no window shades, newspaper piled up, garbage, overgrown grass, etc.  If you are unsure whether a property is vacant, knock on the door.  Ask the owner if he is interested in selling, and if he is not the owner (rental property), ask for the owner’s number.

Get In Touch with AWOL Owners

If you find a vacant property, ask neighbors if they know the owner.  Usually, they will be helpful because ugly houses hurt their home’s property value.  You can also ask the mailman (ask for forwarding address), and if you still have no luck, leave a business card.  When you get home, look up the owner’s address and name.  Call your local tax assessor’s office or by looking up the recorded deed filed with County land records.

Other public databases include infousa.com which will search through the Driver’s License Bureau and the Department of Motor Vehicles.

Look for Tagged Properties

Some areas will “tag” a house that has code violations.  These violations often reflect the vacant or neglected property.  You can ask your city for a list of tagged properties or find out where it is publicly recorded.

When you spend the first few weeks educating yourself, it will pay off in significant savings (and headache).  Save the extra money for rehab (that’s a substantial and surprising enough investment in itself).  And if you play all your cards right (plus you’re lucky), you’ll save that big payoff for your efforts… and inspiration.

If you need help getting a private money loan in your backyard, visit  us at www.CogoCapital.com or call a loan officer today at (800) 473-6051Cogo Capital® offers quick turnaround, excellent terms, and millions to lend. Cogo Capital® serves both local and national real estate investors, real estate agents, and private money lenders in quality, multiple loans.

To Your Success;

Lee A. Arnold


The Lee Arnold System of Real Estate Investing

Follow me on Twitter: @CogoCapital  and @LeeArnoldSystem 

Have a deal under contract that you would like a quote on? Let us know. You can fill out a quick questionnaire at CogoCapital.com to receive a rate quote via email or you can call us anytime at (800) 747-1104 to talk to a loan officer. With millions deployed and millions to deploy, we want you to get the capital you need for your real estate investing.