Real Estate Rookie

By BiggerPockets

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Ready to build your real estate empire… but not sure where to begin?

Think of us as your personal trainer.

From detailed breakdowns of real-world deals… to one-on-one coaching sessions and a warm, welcoming community… hosts Ashley Kehr and Felipe Mejia bring on a wide range of guests to tackle the “newbie” questions you've wondered about but might be afraid to ask.

Looking to 10X your real estate investing business this year? This show isn’t for you.

Looking for your first, second, or third deal -- or envisioning a more modest portfolio? Step right up. 

Every Wednesday, we’ll arm you with the tips, tools, and roadmaps you'll need as you embark on your journey toward financial freedom.

Episode Date
Growing Your Portfolio with Turnkey Investing with Whitney Hutten and Lance Robinson

Expensive market? Busy with a career and other priorities? There are a lot of compelling reasons to consider turnkey investing in a more affordable area – where a local "operator" sells you a tenanted property designed to pump out cashflow from day one.

All you have to do is "turn the key," hand things off to a property manager and... voilà! You're rich. You can now kick back and sip margaritas on the beach. Right?

Well, it's a little more complicated... as you'll learn today from seasoned turnkey investors Whitney Hutten and Lance Robinson. Both have bought rental properties from turnkey operators in several different markets, and they tell us all about the highs and lows, reveal what they wish they would have known, and offer candid advice for anyone considering this niche.

When you're done with this show, you'll know the exact questions savvy investors ask prospective turnkey providers about neighborhoods, construction warranties, property management contracts, and how operators handle evictions and major repairs. You'll also know how to handle a home inspection to ensure you know exactly what you're getting into!

Look – there are a lot of turnkey operators active on the BiggerPockets forums. A lot of them are great teachers, too. But this episode is told from the investor/customer's perspective... and it's well worth a listen – or two!

In This Episode We Cover:

  • What turnkey investing is
  • Doing due diligence to find a trusted turnkey operator
  • Why it's always worth flying out to walk the property before purchasing
  • Hiring your own home inspector!
  • Whitney and Lance's turnkey winners and losers
  • Managing your property manager
  • Handling an eviction
  • The role of cash reserves when buying turnkey properties
  • The "BRRRR-key" business model
  • And SO much more!

Links from the Show

Check the full show notes here:

Sep 16, 2020
Balancing 8 Properties with a Full-Time Career and Family with "Property Pastor" Marsay Winder

We all have the same 24 hours per day... so be like Marsay Winder and make the most of them!

He calls himself the "Property Pastor," and he owns 8 properties (24 units) in the Virginia Beach, VA area. Marsay juggles his business with his family life and a full-time career in manufacturing, so landlording systems are a must – and he breaks them down for us in this episode.

You'll also hear about his MVP mentor, how he avoids time-wasting distractions, and the books and resources that helped him build a formidable portfolio in just 3 years.

Enjoy this one... and if you're getting value out of the content here, please do us a favor and give us a rating and review on Apple Podcasts. It takes less than 30 seconds, and it really helps us climb the rankings and spread the gospel of financial independence through real estate investing!

In This Episode We Cover:

  • Working on his properties on nights and weekends while working full-time
  • Going big on his first deal: a 4-unit building bought from a wholesaler
  • Buying from tired landlords
  • How to frame a rent increase with tenants
  • Using Cozy and QuickBooks to manage his rentals
  • Hiring a property management company
  • How to successfully approach a real estate mentor
  • Involving his kids in his real estate investing business
  • What happened when his tenant joined his church, then stopped paying rent
  • And SO much more!

Links from the Show

Check the full show notes here:

Sep 09, 2020
5 Doors by Using Seller Financing for the First Time with Aaron Chapman

Aaron Chapman ran into major obstacles on his first 2 real estate deals... obstacles you might face as you launch your own investing career. Wouldn't you like to know how to react when you're turned down for a loan? Today, you'll learn how!

From a duplex purchase that seemed doomed when he lost his job while in escrow... to a triplex purchase that a bank wouldn't touch, this Louisville, KY investor breaks down how he reached 5 doors by age 24 – and his exact roadmap to reach financial independence by age 30!

Oh, and don't miss the story of how Aaron wound up on the show (hint: his fiance is the real MVP!). Before you go, here's a challenge for you: who in your market would make a great guest for this show? Send them over to and we'll take a look at their application.

In This Episode We Cover:

  • His "work backwards" plan for achieving financial freedom ($10k/month) by age 30
  • Aaron's process for "driving for dollars"
  • Living for free through house hacking
  • Buying a "1% rule" triplex using seller financing
  • How he achieved a 47% cash-on-cash return
  • How he and his fiance adjusted when he lost his job while under contract on his first deal!
  • Getting your spouse or partner interested in investing
  • And SO much more!

Links from the Show

Check the full show notes here:

Sep 02, 2020
Mindset Shift at 40 to Start Real Estate Investing with Derek Tellier

Derek Tellier didn’t start investing in real estate until he was over 40. Unhappy with what was going on in his life, a friend plugged him into healthy eating, exercising, and long-distance running. Once his health was back on track, he realized he didn’t like the trajectory his life was on, and made major changes.

That same running friend introduced him to real estate investing. Derek got licensed, joined his friend’s real estate team, and bought his first real estate deal - a cabin that he rents out short-term in the Smoky Mountains.

Derek has parlayed that into a career, helping people invest in short term rentals in the Smoky Mountains

Derek’s Rookie Deal is a BRRRR property that needed a LOT of work. He financed it using private money and after his rehab he was able to pull out ALL of the money he had into the deal. It even cashflows $350 per month!

Derek has had some growing pains along the way, like a true real estate investor. He shares tips for finding contractors, finding lenders, and finding deals in this episode, along with discussing numbers and the importance of having reserves.

If you think you waited too late to start investing in real estate, this episode can help change your mindset and show you that it’s never too late to get started.

In This Episode We Cover:

  • How a midlife crisis made him start investing in his 40s
  • Buying short-term rentals during COVID
  • How he funds deals using private money
  • His BRRRR strategy
  • How his mentor helped him get 7 deals in 6 months
  • How he got the word out there by starting his own meetup
  • And SO much more!

Links from the Show

Check the full show notes here:

Aug 26, 2020
What Appraisers Look For and What it Means for You with Investor/Appraiser Josiah Smelser

Here, by popular demand: the Appraisal Episode!

Josiah Smelser – podcaster, two-time BiggerPockets Real Estate Podcast guest, and Certified General Appraiser – is here to answer your many questions, and he delivers the goods.

We played some questions from the Rookie Request Line and touched on subjects like which data and documents you can provide an appraiser, how to challenge an appraisal, and how to keep your emotions in check when estimating After Repair Value.

Whether you're a rookie who plans to flip, BRRRR, or invest in rental properties, understanding how properties are appraised – and the mindset of an appraiser – is key to coming out on top. So enjoy this episode, and tell Josiah what you think in the show notes at

In This Episode We Cover:

  • Getting inside the mind of an appraiser
  • What information you can and should provide an appraiser
  • The top 3 variables that determine value
  • Approaching the appraisal process with "data and humility"
  • How appraisals vary by market
  • The Sales Comparison Approach vs. the Income Approach
  • Kitchens, bathrooms, and added square footage
  • How doing unpermitted work can come back to bite you
  • Why you should never outright ask an appraiser to come back with a specific number
  • The right way to challenge a low appraisal
  • And SO much more!

Links from the Show

Check the full show notes here:

Aug 19, 2020
13 Units Despite Being Stationed 5,000 Miles Away with Naaman Taylor

On today's show: how U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Naaman Taylor is combining house hacking, partnerships, and VA loans to build himself a comfy retirement... all while serving his country overseas!

This episode has something for everyone – from structuring partnerships to stretch your dollar farther, to hiring property managers and identifying a trustworthy mentor.

Be sure to let Naaman (he said we could call him "Taylor") what you thought of the show by visiting our show notes page at and leaving a comment... or sharing your thoughts in a post in the Real Estate Rookie Facebook Group.

In This Episode We Cover:

  • Planning for a financially secure retirement while working a steady military job
  • How to use VA loans more than once
  • Common mistakes when using a VA loan
  • Duplexes vs. single family homes
  • Overcoming an early bad experience with a tenant
  • Using Dave Ramsey's principles to save money for down payments
  • The advantages of a 50/50 partnership
  • Generating "truly passive income" rather than creating a job for himself
  • How to interview property management companies
  • Taking advantage of the "2 in 5" tax rule with your primary residences
  • How to vet a potential real estate investing mentor
  • And SO much more!

Check the full show notes here:

Aug 12, 2020
From Dave Ramsey Disciple to No-Money-Down Real Estate Investor with Sarah Brandenberger

Interested in real estate investing... but wary of taking on debt?

That's the situation Sarah Brandenberger found herself in, and today shares her journey from a staunchly anti-debt "penny pincher" to a creative financier raising private money!

Sarah also gives us the goods on portfolio loans – including a ninja tip that allowed her to tap the equity in multiple properties and use those funds to take advantage of a smokin' deal. You'll learn what documents to bring when asking for a loan – whether you're meeting with a bank or a private individual. And Felipe throws in a Home Depot shopping hack for good measure.

Give Sarah a follow on Instagram (@nerdsguidetoFI) and let her know what you thought of this episode... and share this episode with a friend or family member who would find it inspiring.

In This Episode We Cover:

  • How Sarah changed her mindset about "good debt"
  • 15-year vs. 30-year mortgages
  • The data and documents she shares with potential lenders
  • House hacking by turning her basement into a rental
  • Unlocking "the power of a cash offer" with private money
  • Tapping the equity on multiple properties at once
  • The loan that's invisible to other banks
  • Using checklists to estimate rehab costs (even when you're brand new)
  • Using Avail to manager her rentals
  • And SO much more!

Links from the Show

Check the full show notes here:

Aug 05, 2020
5 Rentals on Autopilot with Full-Time Highway Patrolman Ruben Galindo

Curious how to manage a rental portfolio in your limited free time?

Learn from today's guest Ruben Galindo, who had his hands full managing hundreds of law enforcement officers in Texas... but didn't let that stop him.

Ruben is 48 years old, and in the past five years, he's acquired five rental properties that require about an hour of his time each week. In this episode, he'll teach you how he uses Cozy and Docusign to do everything virtually, how door knocking led to one of his best deals, and how he leverages his 401(k) in his real estate business.

Ruben didn't jump in until his 40s, but he already has experience with buying a foreclosure, helping a seller avoid foreclosure, a short sale, and a straightforward live-in flip (where he currently lives). Not bad for a relative rookie!

If you pick up any tips from Ruben or have questions for him, leave a comment in the show notes at And if you're feeling extra generous, leave us a rating and review in Apple Podcasts.

In This Episode We Cover:

  • How Ruben automates his rental property management
  • Building and maintaining a network of contractors
  • The accounts where Ruben, Ashley, and Felipe hold their reserve funds (Rookie Request Line question! 1-888-5-ROOKIE)
  • Buying a HUD foreclosure
  • Helping a family avoid foreclosure by temporarily taking over payments
  • Hiring an attorney on a tricky pre-foreclosure deal
  • How door-knocking helped him beat his competition
  • How to avoid over-leveraging yourself as a rookie
  • And SO much more!

Links from the Show

Check the full show notes here:

Jul 29, 2020
5 Frequently Asked Questions When Starting Out with Felipe and Ashley

Rookie FAQ time!

Today Ashley and Felipe run through the top 5 questions from the Real Estate Rookie Facebook Group and the Rookie Request Line (leave us a voicemail at 1-888-5-ROOKIE).

From finding and financing deals to the infamous LLC question and beyond, our co-hosts offer their advice and discuss various approaches new investors can use to build momentum. Plus, former BiggerPockets Real Estate Podcast guest Whitney Hutten makes a cameo to offer her two cents on how to properly vet turnkey providers.

What did we miss? Let us know, and make sure you're subscribed to the show so you won't miss an episode.

In This Episode We Cover:

  • Various approaches to financing a deal
  • Methods for finding deals when you're new to the game
  • The one question you should ask every turnkey company (you probably haven't thought of it)
  • Owning property an in LLC
  • How to decide whether to get your real estate license
  • And SO much more!

Links from the Show

 Check the full show notes here:

Jul 22, 2020
Using Lines of Credit to Kickstart Your Investing Career with Charlie Ashley

Today: how Lexington, KY investor Charlie Ashley uses lines of credit and construction loans to build his portfolio while working full-time.

Charlie walks us through his year-long education phase, his first couple deals, and the expensive lessons he learned while renovating a property he lovingly calls "The Pit"!

Sure... finding deals is important. But today you'll learn how understanding financing has helped Charlie gain a lot of momentum quickly – and how every new investor can do the same.

Thanks for spending time with us every Wednesday. If you like what you hear, let us know with a rating and review in Apple Podcasts... or share this episode with a friend or family member!

Links from the Show

Check the full show notes here:

Jul 15, 2020
Going Full-Time as a Rookie Right Out of College With Arvi Carkanji and Dave Arlaud

In today's episode, you'll meet a power couple who both immigrated to the U.S. seven years ago and soon decided real estate would be their path to financial freedom.

Arvi Carkanji and Dave Arlaud are Nashville-based flipper-investors, who are dividing and conquering to run a successful business while building a stable of rental properties. Arvi handles acquisitions (listen for the Rookie Request Line about direct mail), while Dave is a licensed contractor who takes charge of construction.

Together they walk us through their approach to renovating houses and working with subcontractors and dive into the deal that motivated Arvi to quit her first (and quite possibly last) "real job."

If you're thinking about taking on "value-add" projects—and you probably should be—listen close to hear these two rookies walk us through their process!

In This Episode We Cover:

  • How Arvi and Dave wound up as real estate investors just a year out of college
  • How they work with contractors, step by step
  • Dave's "25-25-50" payment plan for contractors
  • The different stages involved in renovating a house
  • Red flags to look for when inspecting work
  • Due diligence and permits
  • Transforming a single-family home into a duplex
  • Raising private money as a newbie
  • Renting staging furniture from companies like Rent-A-Center
  • And SO much more!

Links from the Show

Check the full show notes here:

Jul 08, 2020
Starting at Age 45 With a "1% Rule" Property (in New Jersey!) With Tricia Baxter

She read Rich Dad Poor Dad, got angry at herself for not having built multiple income streams... and decided to do something about it!

Tricia Baxter is a real estate rookie who got in the game in her mid-40s. In this episode, she shares how she built a healthy portfolio of small multifamily properties on the Jersey Shore.

Tricia's a busy professional with her own law practice, but she still decided to self-manage when she got started—namely, to learn the ropes and create standard operating procedures, which came in handy when she eventually hired a property manager (spoiler: that's her MVP!).

This episode is full of great tips for anyone who aspires to treat their real estate investing like the business it is!

In This Episode We Cover:

  • Self-managing your first property as a learning exercise
  • Why Tricia chose to buy long-term rentals in a touristy area
  • How she finds great vendors using private Facebook groups
  • How to handle raising below-market rents
  • Her tips for financing deals creatively
  • Juggling real estate with a demanding career
  • The importance of multiple income streams
  • And SO much more!

Links from the Show

Check the full show notes here:

Jul 01, 2020
3 Rentals in His First Year & the Power of a Real-Life 'Rich Dad' Mentor with Derrick Ziglar Jr.

From humble beginnings... to Division 1 football, military service, and now three rental properties in his 20s!

Derrick Ziglar Jr. is a man on a mission, and today he shares how he converted a wrong turn into a $30K duplex purchase that kick-started his journey toward generational wealth.

If you're interested in securing your financial future, then don't miss Derrick's tips on how he finds deals, how he uses a personal line of credit, and the lessons he's learned about managing contractors.

Plus, we go in-depth on how he built a life-changing relationship with a mentor/father figure and the importance of casting a long-term vision for your real estate business—no matter your goals.

Derrick is an impressive rookie investor, and he doesn't hold back in this one... so hit play now. And if you enjoy this episode, please leave us a rating and review in Apple Podcasts!

Links from the Show

Check the full show notes here:

Jun 24, 2020
How to Pick Your Perfect Market: Cleveland vs. Columbus Case Study! with Dave Meyer and Jamie Gallagher

What better way to learn a concept than a real-life, real-time case study?

Today, we listen in on rookie investor Jamie Gallagher as he compares and contrasts two markets. Meanwhile, BiggerPockets' data wiz David Meyer is there to walk him (and us) through the numbers.

You'll learn how to use population growth, rent-to-price ratio, rent-to-income ratio, and historical performance to weigh the pros and cons of various markets so you can compare apples to apples.

These aren't the only factors to consider, but this episode will give you a solid grasp of the basics and put you way ahead of most investors in your search for a market that makes sense for you and your goals.

Be sure to check out BPInsights, the new Pro member benefit bringing you fresh, local real estate data, at (use the promo code "ROOKIES" for a discount if you're upgrading to Pro!). And you can find more of David's work in BiggerPockets Wealth magazine at

In This Episode We Cover:

  • The most important data points to consider when choosing a market
  • What rent-to-price ratio is
  • What rent-to-income ratio is
  • How to look at a market's performance throughout economic cycles
  • How job and population growth affects appreciation
  • What types of employers to look for
  • Quality of life factors
  • Analysis of Cleveland vs. Columbus, Ohio
  • Advice for a future house hacker
  • And SO much more!

Links from the Show

 Check the full show notes here:

Jun 17, 2020
5 Steps to Reach Financial Freedom in 15 Years Through Long-Distance Investing With Elyse Rasmussen

In 2017, she had done zero deals. Today, she's got 20 units and is nearing her goal of financial freedom by age 45.

In this episode, Elyse Rasmussen shares five tips for rookies interested in long-distance investing... although each can easily be applied to investing in your own backyard, too.

Check out her Instagram page @investingforfinancialfreedom for some #landlordmemes, and be sure to join the Real Estate Rookie Facebook group to tell us what you think of this episode!

In This Episode We Cover:

  • Elyse and her husband's plan to reach financial freedom by age 45
  • What to look for when choosing a market out of state (climate, natural hazards, tax policies, etc.)
  • Joining a network of long-distance investors to find referrals
  • Finding and vetting a dual property manager/real estate agent
  • Her approach to insurance policies for 19 properties
  • Buying properties at online auction, step by step
  • And SO much more!

Links from the Show

Check the full show notes here:

Jun 10, 2020
4 Keys to Building a Portfolio While Working Full-Time With Robert Leonard

Between his career and a podcasting side hustle, Robert Leonard's a busy guy. So how does he—and how can you—build a small but mighty rental portfolio in your spare time?

For Robert, it comes down to 4 major elements:

1. Use a series of house hacks to lower expenses and build equity.

2. Find an MVP real estate agent.

3. Align with a partner.

4. Invest out-of-state.

In this episode, Robert goes into detail on each of the above and explains how they helped him break through "analysis paralysis" in his early 20s. If you pick just one of these strategies and do it well, you'll be way ahead of the game. When you combine several, you're on your way to financial freedom.

Be sure to check out Robert's two podcasts, Millennial Investing and Real Estate Investing over on The Investor's Podcast Network, and subscribe to Real Estate Rookie so you won't miss our next show.

Links from the Show

Check the full show notes here:

Jun 03, 2020
How Drew Pulled 6 Deals From His First Direct Mail Campaign With Ryan Dossey (Mentor) and Drew Wiard (Mentee)—Part 2

Everything you've ever wanted to know about direct-to-homeowner marketing... but may have been afraid to ask!

From exactly what Drew writes in a letter, to how he builds rapport when running an appointment, to making offers and getting to the closing table, it's all here in plain English.

This episode follows up on show #9, where mentor/mentee duo Ryan Dossey and Drew Wiard broke down how Drew built a brand and zeroed in on his target market. Today, they walk us through everything that happens after a lead comes in, including how Drew was able to close three deals and get three more under contract in the past three months—despite the pandemic.

If you're tired of seeing all the good deals go to other investors, take matters into your own hands and put some of their tips into action! And be sure to subscribe to Real Estate Rookie in your favorite podcast app so you won't miss the next one.

In This Episode We Cover:

  • Drew's results from his first direct mail campaign
  • Marketing to an "absentee owners with equity" list
  • Keeping your marketing message simple
  • Why Drew's letters don't acknowledge the homeowner's hardship
  • Why response rate is the wrong metric to focus on
  • Using "75% of ARV minus repairs" to formulate offers
  • Overcoming objections when you're negotiating a price
  • Putting an inspection period in your contract
  • Finding real estate agents who work with cash buyers
  • Drew and Ryan's personal real estate investing MVPs
  • And SO much more!

Links from the Show

 Check the full show notes here:

May 27, 2020
What Works (and Doesn't) in a Recession & the Untold Story of J Scott's Messy First Flip

BiggerPockets legend J Scott was once a rookie, and he's got the stories (and scars) to prove it!

Today J stops by to give us a primer on economic cycles and how they impact real estate investors. You'll learn what to expect when housing prices soften and which strategies work best in each economic phase. Plus, J shares the tale of his first (years-long) flip, tells us what he's learned along the way, and delivers a surprising top tip for today's rookie real estate investor.

For more on this topic, pick up a copy of J's newly updated book Recession-Proof Real Estate Investing here.

In This Episode We Cover:

  • Economic cycles throughout history
  • Which strategies tend to work well at each point in the cycle
  • J's first flip as a complete newbie
  • The systems he developed over the years
  • How he's shoring up his cash position
  • Opening credit lines
  • Adjusting to a new lending environment
  • And SO much more!

Links from the Show

Check the full show notes here:

May 20, 2020
Using Home Inspections to Spot "Deal Killers" and Negotiate Better Prices with Rose Buckley

OK, you've got a property under contract. Now the real work begins!

In today's episode, you'll learn all about about a crucial step in the home-buying process: home inspections.

Find out how they work, how much they cost, and how they could wind up saving you a boatload of cash—or help you negotiate a sweet deal!

Rose Buckley is a certified home inspector who has walked 1,000-plus homes. And with her background in teaching and translating, she enjoys breaking down this part of the business for up-and-coming investors.

Rose shares her tips for finding a great local inspector and reveals which defects are no biggie, which are challenging, and which ones can be "deal killers."

And yes. We, too, noticed Rose is a female in a male-dominated profession. That led to a great discussion about how she approaches that challenge, how sometimes it's actually an opportunity, and why training as a home inspector—regardless of your gender—may get you closer to your investing goals.

Subscribe to Real Estate Rookie in your favorite podcast app, and if you enjoyed this episode, please pass it on to just ONE friend or family member who might, too.

In This Episode We Cover:

  • What makes a great home inspector
  • Using an inspection report in price negotiations
  • The most common issues Rose runs into
  • Why water is the real estate investor's No. 1 enemy
  • The time she spent 8 hours inspecting a single house
  • How to spot sloppy work in a house that's been flipped
  • Termite and pest infestations
  • GFCI outlets in bathrooms and kitchens
  • Rose's experience as a female in a male-dominated industry
  • How becoming a licensed inspector could make you a savvier investor
  • And SO much more!

Links from the Show

Check the full show notes here:

May 13, 2020
2 Long-Distance Rentals with $0 Down with Tony Robinson

Tony Robinson had every excuse NOT to invest.

Expensive local market? Demanding full-time job? Family responsibilities?

Check, check, and check.

So, how did he pull off his first two deals in a cash flow-friendly market 1,500 miles away?

Today, Tony spills the beans: how he got a bank to loan him 100% of purchase AND rehab cost, how he managed contractors from afar, two crucial lessons he learned on his first deal, and much more.

Tony shares tip after tip for investors like you—especially if you live in a pricey area (he lives in Southern California and invests in Shreveport, Louisiana).

Plus, he dives into the mindset shifts that helped him break through—and how becoming a father at a young age led to a goal of achieving financial independence.

We guarantee you'll get value out of this episode. If you agree, subscribe to the show and give us a rating and review in Apple Podcasts. See you next Wednesday!

In This Episode We Cover:

  • How Tony got past a failed first deal
  • Zeroing in on one zip code when looking for deals
  • Why he chose to invest in Shreveport, LA
  • How he pulled his money out by refinancing
  • Why real estate is "80% mental"
  • Finding a real estate agent and property manager out-of-state
  • Managing renovations remotely using FaceTime
  • How a local bank funded 100% of his projects
  • How a construction loan works and what "draws" are
  • Analyzing local rents
  • Why he locked in his tenants on a 2-year lease
  • And SO much more!

Links from the Show

Check the full show notes here:

May 06, 2020
Finding Off-Market Deals, Step-by-Step with Ryan Dossey (Mentor) and Drew Wiard (Mentee): Part 1

Can't find deals on the MLS? Dreaming about off-market deals, but not sure how to go after them?

Today's show lays out a step-by-step, repeatable strategy for those of you who have what it takes to approach homeowners directly. It's not easy. It takes patience. And It costs money (or time). But for those precise reasons, it's where the real money is.

Today we bring in Drew Wiard, a Fort Wayne, IN investor with a family and a full-time job. He's joined by his mentor, Ryan Dossey, a former BiggerPockets Podcast guest who built his 100+ unit portfolio by creating a pipeline of off-market deals.

The guys walk us through how to build a brand that stands out from the competition, how to establish authority online, and how to pull lists full of juicy leads. This is not vague advice... they reveal the exact systems and resources they're using to find and contact sellers (not all of whom fit the "desperate/distressed" stereotype, by the way)!

Plus, we have a great conversation about mentoring in general – how to find and vet teachers, how to deliver value, and how to hold one another accountable along the way.

This is actually Part 1 in a series; we're going to invite Drew and Ryan back next month to tackle the second piece of this puzzle: handling leads, negotiating with sellers, and crafting your exit strategy.

If you think you have what it takes to find off-market deals, this episode is a perfect starting point. Be sure to subscribe to the show in your favorite app, and we'll see you next Wednesday!

In This Episode We Cover:

  • Building a local community-oriented brand when marketing to sellers
  • How to differentiate yourself from other "We Buy Houses" competitors
  • Setting up a Carrot website
  • Creating a web presence to build authority
  • How to identify the hottest zip codes in your area
  • Building "niche" marketing lists using online public records
  • How to generate off-market leads without quitting your day job
  • Eye-catching direct mail pieces
  • The Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system Ryan and Drew use
  • How Ryan holds Drew accountable to his goals
  • How to bring value to your mentor
  • How Drew makes time for investing despite having a demanding job and a family
  • And SO much more!

Links from the Show

Check the full show notes here:

Apr 29, 2020
Why Pay Someone Else's Mortgage? Ditching $20k/Year Rent with Mallori and Lucas

Banks tend to love a certain type of borrower... and Mallori and Lucas don't quite fit the mold.

They're not 9-to-5ers. They rely on tips and seasonal work. And they live modestly but aren't swimming in cash. So, when they took the plunge into real estate investing—in pricey Tacoma, Washington—they had some work to do to become "bankable."

Today you'll learn how despite a few roadblocks, they dumped their rent payment and pulled off their first-ever home purchase: a house hack in an up-and-coming area. From shopping around between banks, to securing a "rehire" letter to verify employment, to negotiating "early access" to the property and doing some repairs before closing, this episode is full of great tips for those just starting out.

Also—it's a reminder that "sweat equity" doesn't always mean physical labor. Sometimes it's just as important to stay focused and organized when it comes to the huge amounts of paperwork involved in a real estate transaction!

Let us know what you think of the show in our Facebook group (just search "Real Estate Rookie"), and subscribe so you won't miss out next week. See you Wednesday!

In This Episode We Cover:

  • What Mallori and Lucas learned from a first-time homebuyer class
  • The mindset shift that helped them overcome their fears
  • How they avoided analysis paralysis
  • Getting access to a property to do repairs before closing
  • How they ensured their property passed the appraisal
  • How they got free carpet for their rehab
  • How blue-collar workers can be real estate investors, too
  • How seasonal workers can make themselves more bankable
  • What a "rehire letter" is
  • How they analyzed several house hack deals
  • Why listings with one Google Street View photo can be hidden gems
  • Websites where they check rent comps
  • Why their real estate agent turned out to be their "MVP"
  • And SO much more!

Links from the Show

Check the full show notes here:

Apr 22, 2020
6 Things New Investors Should Be Doing Right Now

If you've been telling yourself, "I'll invest in real estate when prices come down," well... that time may be coming.

So, what should rookie real estate investors be doing now to prepare?

Today we outline six action items—from shoring up your financial position to making yourself an attractive partner. Also, we bring back the "Rookie Request Line" so you can hear Ashley and Felipe's answers to a few questions from the audience.

If you feel stuck, fearful, or just restless while you're cooped up inside... then check out this episode and take action!

If you're enjoying the show, please take 30 seconds to give us an honest review on Apple Podcasts.

See you next Wednesday!

In This Episode We Cover:

  • How to secure long-term debt now
  • How to make yourself bankable
  • Why now is the perfect time to practice analyzing deals
  • Why you should take a fresh look at your tenants' leases
  • How to make yourself an attractive real estate partner
  • What balloon payments are and how to plan for them
  • Emergency preparedness procedures
  • Getting your mindset right before jumping into real estate investing
  • And SO much more!

Links from the Show

Check the full show notes here:

Apr 15, 2020
The Ultimate Beginners Guide to Tenant Screening with Lucas Hall

Today we tackle the often-overlooked -- but perhaps most important -- element of real estate investing: actually placing a (great!) resident in your property.

Our guest Lucas Hall built website (which he later sold to Cozy, where he now works) and is an expert on best practices for landlords self-managing small portfolios (that's you!).

Lucas walks us through his exact process from the moment he lists a property for rent, to the moment he signs a lease -- AND explains what's changed (and what hasn't) since the COVID-19 outbreak began.

Want to avoid evictions and vacancy? Listen up...⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀

Lucas has been a landlord for 10+ years, owns 4 properties across 3 states. Yet he still hasn't had to evict anybody. That's not an accident; it's the result of a firm but fair process he follows every time there's a vacancy.

Plus, we add a fun twist toward the end of the episode when a rookie investor -- Andrés Bustamante -- jumps on the call to ask some GREAT questions about his own current search for a tenant.

This is a timeless episode that will be just as relevant years in the future. Check it out now, and subscribe to Real Estate Rookie so you won't miss the next one.

See you next Wednesday!

In This Episode We Cover:

- The importance of "pre-screening" over the phone

- Online tools to run background and credit checks

- Why you should always check an applicant's social media profiles

- The income-to-rent ratio Lucas uses to qualify tenants

- Why gathering social security numbers is overrated

- Photo ID checks

- Where to find classes on how to be a fair, ethical landlord

- How to follow fair housing laws

- What Lucas thinks of "cash for keys"

- Whether to accept pre-payment of rent

- Co-signing/guarantor arrangements when a tenant has no income

- How to show properties during the COVID-19 quarantine

- Handling late and non-payment of rent

And much more!

Apr 08, 2020
Doing Deals While Quarantined with Jeremy, Kristen, and Rafael

Yes, newbies ARE still closing deals out there.

This week, we talk to three up-and-coming investors who either recently closed or are currently under contract on investment properties.

Despite entire parts of the economy being shut down, real estate continues to be classified as "essential" -- and Jeremy Goldizen (Avon, OH), Kristen Johnson (Columbia, SC), and Rafael Estrada (Denver, CO) are all taking advantage.

This episode was streamed as a Facebook live, so our audience pitches in and puts some timely questions to our guests and hosts.

How did Jeremy score a 55% discount on a house he plans to BRRRR?

How did Kristen find the wholesaler who brought her the perfect rental property?

And how did Rafael shift his strategy when coronavirus hit and flipping no longer looked like such a great idea?

Hit play, and get answers to all those questions and more.

Next week, we'll be talking about how to screen and work with tenants in the current environment.

You won't want to miss that one... so subscribe to Real Estate Rookie in your favorite podcast app, and we'll see you next Wednesday!

Apr 01, 2020
Start Now, or Wait This Thing Out? Live Audience Q&A

In this episode, we hand the mic over to YOU.

Yesterday (March 24) Ashley and Felipe took took live listener calls and real-time questions from Real Estate Rookie Facebook group members.

"Should I go through with my deal?" "How do I handle my short-term rental?" "How are more experienced investors shifting their big-picture strategy?"

Those are just FEW of the questions we take on in this fast-paced episode.

What do you think of this format? Let us know in the Real Estate Rookie Facebook group -- and tell us what topics you want us to tackle next week.

This are disorienting times for investors of ALL skill levels... but by sharing information and resources, we put ourselves in the best possible position to build wealth throughout good markets AND bad.

See you next Wednesday.

Mar 25, 2020
Coronavirus Crash? Do's and Don'ts from Recession Veterans Joe Asamoah and Steve Rozenberg

It's a new week... and, seemingly, a new world.

So -- we've got a new (and very fresh) episode for you... with a twist on our usual format.

On Tuesday, March 17, Ashley and Felipe sat down with Joe Asamoah and Steve Rozenberg to discuss the topic on everyone's mind: the COVID-19 outbreak and its inevitable impact on real estate investors.

Think of it as a virtual coaching session with two seasoned, successful investors who have withstood several downturns and lived to tell about it.

Joe and Steve have a combined 50 years of experience under their belts, so they offer a valuable perspective to younger or less experienced investors -- our fearless co-hosts included -- who haven't yet seen a full real estate cycle.

This episode covers it all -- from the mindset successful investors use to accelerate wealth-building through downswings, to the shifting competition you're likely to face, to how to whip your finances into shape and secure lines of credit BEFORE you need them.

Plus -- Joe breaks down how renting to Section 8 voucher holders can be a lifeline during a recession (assuming you do a few things exactly right), and Steve shares his tips for designing systems and checklists (he's a pilot after all!) so you can think clearly... even when you're steering into economic headwinds.

This episode is GOLD for investors on the hunt for their first, second, or third deal in 2020... Stay safe, everyone -- and we'll see you next Wednesday.

In This Episode We Cover:

  • Why the first thing we should all do is "take a breath"
  • The importance of a well-thought-out business plan
  • Learning from local investors who thrived during past crashes
  • Why you're likely to see more flippers leasing out houses
  • Why taking out a HELOC may make sense right now
  • Treating tenants like customers to reduce turnover
  • Why Joe believes "your tenant is the true asset"
  • What Steve learned from 9/11 and Hurricane Harvey
  • Learning from your own (and others') failures
  • And SO much more!

Links from the Show

Check the full show notes here:

Mar 18, 2020
Going All Out to Secure Deal #1 (For Sale By Owner!) with Tim Goutos

Ever felt like you're close to breaking into real estate investing, but not quite getting anywhere?

Today's guest, Tim Goutos, was right there with you. But after taking a trip abroad to clear his head, Tim narrowed his focus and went ALL-OUT in pursuit of his first deal.

He talked to everybody about his goal. He went driving for dollars in his hometown of Lake George, NY. Then, after seeing a For Sale By Owner (FSBO) sign, he called the owner on the spot.

What happened next? You'll hear the story in today's episode of the Real Estate Rookie Podcast.

We'll cover how to manage fear when making a cold call, how to crunch the numbers using government tax records, and how to protect yourself against the worst-case scenario.

Plus -- if you know anyone who got burned in 2007-08.. or worry you'll meet the same fate... you'll connect with Tim's story. He had a close relative who lost out in the last downturn, so he had every reason to stay far away. Instead, Tim learned all he could and put together a more conservative game plan.

"Captain Tim" is a relatable, down-to-earth guy... and you can learn a lot from his approach of looking to "get on base" rather than hit a home run right away.

Tell us what you think of this episode in the Real Estate Rookie Facebook group, and subscribe to the podcast in your favorite podcast app so you won't miss the next show!

Mar 11, 2020
From 4 Years of Analysis Paralysis... to 4 Cash-Flowing Properties with Lauren and Kyle Clugston

How will YOU transition from the "getting educated" phase to taking direct action toward your real estate goals?

Start by taking cues from Lauren and Kyle!

In this premiere episode, they share how they powered through their initial hesitation to build a "small but mighty" rental portfolio in less than 3 years' time... a portfolio that has them well on their way to a life of financial freedom (and maybe even a "boat house!").

You'll love their tips for identifying the right market for you, minimizing risk by house hacking, and leveraging your local meetup group to get the scoop on real estate trends in your area.

Plus, they guide us through their first "true" BRRRR deal—sharing lessons from their experience negotiating directly with a seller, firing a contractor, and finding time to DIY a lot of the renovation, all while juggling two full-time careers.

Lauren and Kyle may seem like sophisticated investors now. But in 2017, they were right where a lot of you are today. By following their roadmap and adjusting it to your market, you too can build a mini-empire that funds the life you dream about.

Make sure to subscribe to Real Estate Rookie in your favorite podcast app, and join our Facebook group (just search "Real Estate Rookie") to continue the conversation. See you next Wednesday!

In This Episode We Cover:

  • Lauren and Kyle's backstory
  • How Lauren overcame 4-year analysis paralysis
  • How Lauren and Kyle balance full-time careers with real estate investing
  • How the BRRRR strategy worked for them
  • Why they let other investors (their “competition”) walk through their property
  • Why their MVP is their real estate meetup group
  • Rookie Request Line: "What is your best advice for finding real estate agents who know what they're doing with investors?"
  • And SO much more!


Check the full show notes here:

Mar 05, 2020

Coming March 5, from BiggerPockets. Subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts!

Feb 19, 2020