Real Estate Investors Association of Greater Cincinnati

Why You Should Be Holding Title in a Land Trust



Do you remember 1969? Probably not. But I remember the year 1969 very well. It was the year in which I purchased my first rental house. I was still in college and realized that I needed to break the cycle of poverty in my family.  

First, I decided to get more education than anyone else in my family. So, I went to college and majored in business. While studying in college, I realized that most people in America who became wealthy did it through investment in real estate. My initial interest was in apartment buildings, but since they took large amounts of down payment money (the “nothing down” concept had not been invented yet) I defaulted to the single-family home as my IDEAL investment vehicle. 

By the time I graduated from college I had acquired three rental houses and one small office building. After graduation, I continued acquiring rental houses and titling them in my name personally. One sunny morning I woke up and realized the potential risk I was creating by owning all these properties in my own name. These were the days before you could access the county recorder’s office online. But you could go down to the courthouse and walk into the recorder’s office to look up each owner of every property in town. Wow, was I stupid! 

I began to research different ways of holding a title to real estate. When I di

Which Insurance Policy Should I Have For My Property? (Yes, it Matters a LOT)



The type of policy available to property owners varies based on the type of building, the building occupancy type, and the frequency of the building being occupied.

There are six categories for insuring investment properties, but we will look at only DF1 and DF3.  

The DF1 policy is a base policy with limited coverage for the building.  It can be used for vacant (rehab/flip), rental or owner-occupied properties, but the coverages are generally very limited, usually to:

  1. Fire and lightning
  2. Explosion
  3. Windstorm
  4. Hail
  5. Riots
  6. Smoke damage

The risk to any insurance policy is the exclusions. This list is usually rather lengthy and is “required” reading.  It explains in detail the various conditions for which the policies offer no coverage,  Some of the common EXCLUSIONS include:   

  1. Flood and water damage
  2.

Master Leasing -The Safest Way to Get Started in Real Estate (and a great way to acquire property)



In 1978 a good friend of mine got me to joint venture with him on the purchase of my first single-family investment property in Colorado Springs. We continued to buy several other houses and a fourplex together. We hired 3 different management firms to run our small portfolio. Sadly, all three firms failed miserably, which forced me into the management business by default.

Initially, I just managed properties I owned or in which I had an ownership interest. Eventually, I expanded and took on others' properties to increase income and help cover overhead expenses.

As the business grew, I quickly became aware that the toughest part of property management was not dealing with tenants but dealing with the property owners who would eat up my time and increase my stress with questions and suggestions about their properties. It was difficult for them to understand that only one of us could manage their property.

In 1984 I stumbled onto a better way to do business.

I had a good friend with a problem house he had taken back through foreclosure. He wanted me to manage the property; however, I had very little interest in doing that. Over lunch in one day, I offered to lease his property from him for 35 years at a fixed monthly amount with the right to sub-lease the house to others.

This is an example of a master lease. I told him that if I wasn't making $1,000 per month spread on the rents by the end of the lease, then I had made

Confessions of a Not-Broke Real Estate Investor



Rob X is a landlord with a “real job” who doesn’t want his full name used for reasons understood only in corporate America. 

My name is Robert, and I’m a real estate investor association (REIA) member.  I have a confession to make: I don’t want to quit my job.

I feel a little funny saying that, because it seems like an awful lot of the gurus, experts, and people around me at my local group would really, really like me to want to quit my job.

In fact, it seems like “job” is a 4-letter word around my REIA. A lot of people can’t even seem to say it: it’s a word so obscene that they have to spell it. J.O.B. Which, for those of you who haven’t caught on yet, means “Just Over Broke”.

The problem is, I’m not just over broke. Like millions of other Americans, I have a pretty good-paying job, with good benefits, and a credit score to match. I don’t hate what I do. I don’t feel oppressed by my bosses. I kind of like what I do for a living. I trained for it, I got good at it, and I enjoy it.

In other words, I’m not looking for real estate to fix my financial life; my financial life has been just fine for years.

I’m looking for real estate, and real estate-related assets, to KEEP my financial life fine when I retire,

Three Profit Centers Within One Deal!


              I’m a bit of a “one-trick pony” when it comes to real estate. Yes, I have really enjoyed learning about and doing several of the more creative deals that Vena and Bill teach (and it is some awesome stuff that they teach, by the way!). Yet, as I slowly integrate these into my repertoire, the majority of the deals I work go exactly the same way; buy the property, and then give a lease with an option to purchase to a tenant/buyer. There are so many reasons I love this strategy, though my favorite is the three different profit centers provided within one single deal!

            For example, the $4,000 minimum option fee that one of my tenants/buyers pays is similar to a small fee on a wholesale deal. This option fee is NOT a security deposit; it’s a non-refundable fee for having the option to purchase the property at some point in the future. So, it is your money the moment you receive it! And often times the tenant/buyer will put more down – $5,000 or $8,000 or even $10,000 or more!    


Why Lease Options are Great for Beginners



          Sometimes I would love to go back in time, just to get a chance to do a few things differently than what I actually did…or didn’t do - of course, hindsight is 20/20 right?

          That hindsight, and all the things I did BEFORE I discovered lease/options that I wish I'd just skipped, is why I now stress to everyone who wants to start making money in real estate to consider lease/options FIRST. Please understand that this is not a suggestion based on selfish motives, it is based purely on experience. 

          And the reason why I believe, and am convicted of the fact, that lease option strategies are the absolute best strategies in all of real estate investing for every beginning and seasoned investor to get involved with, is because it takes no capital, very little time, and minimal training, to start getting paid quickly in real estate investing.

          If you were to purchase an average rental property, in a typical neighborhood (let’s say for example a 3 bed, 1.5 bath home rents for $1,200, with a cost of $80,000), and assuming you did not use a private lender (mo

Are You Out of Your Mind? You’d Better Be, if You Want to Get Deals



          If you don’t understand what’s funny about this line of thought, look again, because you may have the same problem. The investor is so focused on what the INVESTOR wants that he apparently hasn’t even bothered to find out what the SELLER’S story is.

          In fact, it’s a BIG PROBLEM when we get so focused on our strategies and our goals and our desire to get a deal done that, we completely forget that unless what our strategy has to offer meets the needs of our sellers, THERE IS NO DEAL.

          Jumping ahead to “How do I write up a creative deal” before you know what the seller owes, why she’s selling, and whether taking payments would meet her goals is putting the proverbial cart before the proverbial horse. Worrying about finding a buyer for property x before you know that the seller will take a wholesale price for property x is torturing yourself for no reason.

         And it’s easy to make assumptions about seller motivation: that a seller in foreclosure will always want to sell; that a seller who inherited a house doesn’t want it; that a se

Advice for Wholesaling “Package Deals”


        It seems like every new Wholesale School student immediately stumbles upon a landlord who wants to sell ALL of his properties, then wants to know how to tackle a package of 4, or 9, or 37 single family homes all at once. And they're already rented, and the don't need any work, and the new wholesaler is excited because this looks like a deal that could make tens of thousands of dollars all in one fell swoop.

        These deals are problematic for a number of reasons:

  1. I rarely see one where the landlord isn't asking more-than-market for the properties. He's willing to sell, but isn't really anxious to sell
  2. It's basically never the case that the houses don't need work. Yes, I KNOW there's someone living in them. That doesn't mean that the roofs aren't 22 years old, or that the furnaces work consistently, or that they won't need a $5,000 turnover when that tenant inevitably moves out.
  3. Each property has to be evaluated separately, which is a LOT of evaluation for a deal that's unlikely to come together.
  4. Coordinating a single buyer to buy a whole package of non-turnkey properties, especially if they're in different parts of the city, isn't

Wholefailing: The Top 3 Reasons For “Failure to Launch”



            Go to any real estate association anywhere in the country, and you’ll meet endless excited folks who are sure that their futures—and fortunes—lie in wholesaling houses. Go back 6 months later, and you’ll find that 90% of those folks have never successfully closed a deal. In most cases, this isn’t due to “inactivity” or “fear” or any of the usual excuses. Many of these folks have actually tried and failed, to make a go of it. In my experience, there are 3 main reasons for this:

1. They don’t understand WHY wholesalers make money. They understand, at least in a basic sense, HOW it happens: you put a deal under contract, and you find someone who wants to pay more than you did, and that “more” is your profit.

But they don’t understand something very basic: that buyers don’t just write a check because the deal is available, or cheap, or even because it’s cheaper than other properties that might be for sale in the same area.

Buyers for wholesale deals are real estate investors, right? So, in order to be interested in a deal, the deal can’t just “make money”; it has to make ENOUGH money to provide a satisfact

How To Gain Instant Authority, Credibility, Fame, and Higher Income In Your Work Or Business.

Central Ohio Real Estate Entrepreneurs


The concept of “branding” is an elusive topic.

Many are of an opinion of what a brand is, however, few know the true definition. More important, even fewer know how to properly leverage their personal brand for greater results in business and life.

Your brand is more than a logo. It’s who you are, your reputation in the market, how you are perceived. Your personal brand stands for something. It’s a positive, negative, or natural feeling in your prospects or colleagues minds.

A properly designed and delivered brand opens the doors to greater opportunities, earning a higher income, producing more sales, or positioning you as an expert in your field.

We all have a brand whether we know it or not. In fact, not having a brand – is a brand. Think, how are you being seen in the market. Are you being intentional with your brand, or is it a byproduct of how other perceive you?

Here are 3 specific advance personal branding strategies you can employ starting today to grow your business.

  1. Getting Your Brand Known. You are in control of your brand. Give it a name, a look, a feel. Start with your reputation. Then make your colleagues, business associates, clients, customers, employers know your brand. In today’s market social media plays a big role. Are you being conscious of your presence in social media – remember, your market is watching.
  1. What you say DOESN’T c