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Payin’ Dues

I’m giving 110%, eating and breathing real estate but still haven’t bought anything. It’s been just over 4 weeks now since rolling into town, sometimes you just have to pay your dues so I’ve come to grips with it now. San Diego is so large and to find deals you have to be willing to cover some ground. This week I looked at about 30 properties and made 4 offers. I know the city pretty well after living here for 27 years but I had to buy a GPS to get swiftly around town to some of these unfamiliar locales. Most of the deals I looked at were on MLS and bank owned REO properties. They are commonly vacant and beat up. Some more than others, its common to see signs of past renovations like travertine tile or faux paint jobs from times when easy money and using your home equity as an ATM machine were so popular here. Many homeowners simply ripped everything out when they left and took it with them. A lot of lenders are opting to paint and carpet and then list for near retail price.

One deal I found early this week in the middle class neighborhood of Linda Vista was listed at $168k. It was a great little 50’s rancher 3/3 with a room addition. I pinned the ARV at $299k. It needed complete kitchen, 3 baths, paint in and out, windows, stucco, flooring, and landscaping. I estimated my rehab budget around $60k, it looked real good so I wrote an offer of $172k hoping to grab it quick. This bank only lists their properties on a website, you are not allowed to submit offers via fax or email. Its like the EBay of REO’s. Whats neat about this system is its suppose to take out all the double dipping as the listing agent doesn’t even control what gets presented, the bank has direct access to the site and picks the best offer. You have to upload your proof of funds and everything to the site. On the last day someone overbid me by 500 bucks and got the house for $172,500. I should have sat at the computer all day.

My direct marketing is working as well, I’ve got offers out on several really exciting projects so hopefully those will come to fruition this summer. I’ve been networking with some other San Diego real estate investors as well, 2 of these guys have alot of offers out and have even offered me some of their deals so I’m real grateful. When you are chasing Short Sales here in San Diego its common to write offers on 15-20 houses and then wait for 6 months. This is the case with these guys and now some of the deals are getting accepted and they don’t want them all. I feel happy with the progress I’ve made during the short time we’ve been back but still anxious to break ground on the first rehab. Stay tuned to see what I’m going to end up with for the first project…

PS. I’m Still Looking To Network With More San Diego Investors, Wholesalers, REO Agents, Short Sale Agents, Contractors and most of all Anyone Who Knows of a Cool House For Sale, Friend me on Facebook or Contact Me here.

PSS. A Special Thanks to Peter for the lead you sent to me on the Real Cool house!

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  1. 7 Comment(s)

  2. By Joe Phair on Mar 6, 2011 | Reply

    Great article. Interesting to hear about how your are going about getting your next contract. You may remember we spoke a few months ago when you were still in Texas.


  3. By Troy on Mar 6, 2011 | Reply

    Good article, new to flipping myself in Sacramento area, after 20 offers, first deal in contract on a hud home at $85K, 3/2 1060 s.f. ARV in the $150’s. Looking to pick-up 2 more homes and have 3 back to back on market by summer. My father is experienced flipper now retired from Bay Area, so teaching me the ropes on first few deals. Lots of flipping going on in and around Sacramento area. As broker and agent (and own RE co.) we are a bit advantaged with commissions and MLS access, but still hard to get good deals. Weve starting making offers without even seeing the house, you almost have to on some hot REO deals, they are going fast, all investors offers, all cash, all quick closings. Not much luck finding non MLS properties for sale, looking to start your “door note” plan soon. Looking for 3/2’s under $90K, these areas have ARV of $150’s with $12-20K in is all. Taking your advice and subing all work out ourself instead of hiring GC, going very well finding great prices so far. Thanks for the great website and great projects you showcase, have learned allot from your website and your projects. Will start networking with other investros in area, sounds like we can all work together too.

    Happy Flipping!

    Troy Kelly
    SacMetro Real Estate

  4. By Tom on Mar 7, 2011 | Reply

    @Joe, thanks..glad you got something out of it.
    @Troy, good to see Sac is coming around. Seems not too long ago I was hearing bad stuff. Sounds like pops has some skills, you are lucky. Glad you are acting as GC, most investors do this anyway even though they pay an extra 15-20% to a GC. Every penny saved goes straight to your net. Good luck with direct marketing, it takes time but pays off in the long run. Thanks for the comments!

  5. By Bilgefisher on Mar 8, 2011 | Reply


    Your willing to give that 110% is exactly why your successful and folks like myself listen to what you have to say.


  6. By Bob L on Mar 13, 2011 | Reply

    Hi Tom,

    What is the bank website that you found the Linda Vista property at?


  7. By Tom on Mar 13, 2011 | Reply

    Thanks for the support Bilge, I saw on your blog we are kinda in the same boat. Keep up the good work buddy!

    @Bob, There’s about 4-5 similiar sites. Sorry but I’m not looking to increase my competition in San Diego, it’s hard enough. I love to share information here with my audience but when it comes to putting food on the table its every man for himself: )

  8. By Troy on Mar 14, 2011 | Reply

    Thanks for reply Tom. Now in contract on 2 HUD homes, excellent deals each @ 50% of ARV, HUD reviews bids daily VIA online submission, bypassing the listing agent. Caught both just as they came onto HUD website before anyone knew about them, but not onto MLS yet, (6 hour delay depending on listing agent). Having same problem here with slimmy listing agents, I suspect they take our offer, add $100 and make sure their buyer gets the high bid. Cant prove it, but sure seems like its going on up here like you said it was in SD market. Great blogging Tom, Thanks again for paint colors too!

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