No successful real estate investor makes it alone. They need a carefully selected team with individual strengths to generate success in this industry. Trying to do everything will leave you exhausted and inefficient from wearing too many hats. It’s critical that you take investing seriously and include these people on your team.
Some people successfully sell homes by owner, but it takes much longer and they statistically sell for tens of thousands less in the long run. This makes having a realtor on your team a more efficient and financially savvy option.
“Real estate agents are much more equipped to sell your home quickly given their knowledge of the marketplace, resources and time to be able to do it,” says Amir Hamzehali, a highly respected Vancouver real estate agent. “And when your home stays on the market for less time, it means that your home won’t decline in value.”
Get a realtor on your team, and utilize their skills.
An attorney can handle all of the legal work, from closings and real estate transactions to structuring your business and protecting your personal assets. If you have an attorney on board, they can help you avoid lawsuits. It’s better than hiring an attorney when you need to defend yourself.
It can be challenging to find a good mortgage broker. Once you find someone, stick with them. You loyal broker will be more aggressive in locating buyers, qualifying them, and negotiating contracts on your behalf.
Appraisers are usually hired by your mortgage lender, but all appraisers are not created equally. Some are lazier than others, and don’t always get all the data they need to correctly determine the value of a home.
You don’t have to use the appraiser the bank hires. Find a thorough, trustworthy appraiser, and use them to get accurate property value information every time.
The appraised value doesn’t tell you everything about whether or not a property is a smart investment. The inspector provides more detailed information to help you make a purchasing decision.
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“The inspector comes in and gives it to you down and dirty,” explains Chris Clothier of Bigger Pockets. “Their job is to say, here are the issues and here are the fixes. They could not care less about comparables or how other houses are finished out. Their job is to tell you what works, what does not work, and what you have to address.”
Inspectors are objective, unlike appraisers who are on the bank’s payroll. If you have a good inspector on your team, you’ll get the best deal on a property.
- Insurance Agent(s)
You’ll deal with your fair share of insurance policies, and it’s easier if you have a really good independent insurance agent. You might need multiple agents, since most homeowner’s insurance agencies don’t offer business liability coverage.
No investor tries to make a purchase without considering the financials. If you’ve developed a profitable investment company, allow a certified accountant to take care of this portion. They’ll handle your taxes, make sure your properties are profitable, and give you financial recommendations for new investments.
- Title Company
Title company regulations are stricter than ever. It helps to have a good real estate lawyer on your side, but a title company can go one step further to research and protect your investments.
- General or Sub Contractors
If you’re an investor who specializes in foreclosure and wholesale flips, you know the value of a good contractor. Once you find a qualified individual, bring them with you to house showings to get ideas about the costs of renovations.
You might hire a general contractor or choose a variety of sub contractors. “When you use a general contractor to do the entire job…They will figure the entire scope of work, hire subs, schedule, budget and plan the entire project,” explains Mark Ferguson of InvestFourMore.com. “It can get very expensive using general contractors, because they have so much work scheduling and planning everything.” This option is for investors who want to delegate most of the responsibility.
“When you use subcontractors to repair a house, you have to hire out certain jobs and schedule the work,” Ferguson continues. “The benefit of hiring out specific jobs is they can get done quicker and cheaper than a general contractor.” Those who want to save a little money and don’t mind being in charge of the entire operation will choose subcontractors.
- Escrow Officer
An escrow officer works with a closing company. They should be efficient and able to explain things clearly. If you’re working with an escrow agent who doesn’t know what to do with a more complex contract, you probably want someone more qualified on retainer.
- Cleaning Crew
Quick turnarounds on your real estate properties are key when it comes to profit. If you find a good cleaning company, you’ll use them over and over again. It will raise the reputation of your business, help you grow your portfolio, and make it easier to sell or rent your properties.
- Property Manager
You can, of course, manage a rental property on your own, but if you’re out of the area or you have multiple investments, it’s usually best to outsource this responsibility to a property management company. They’ll handle tenant screenings, contract generation, rent collection, maintenance, and more.
You’ll pay a small fee every month, but most investors find that using property managers raises their property values and makes it easier to increase rent prices.
Any real estate investor knows that if you can get a great price for a property, you can make more money from it. Having a wholesaler on your team can help you locate and close excellent deals quickly.
“Wholesaling real estate works well for an investor who wishes to gain quick cash in a more flexible manner,” says Shelby Corkran of Asset Column. “For the seller, wholesaling real estate is also appealing because it eliminates the hassle of hiring a real estate agent and this deal enables them to sell the property at a faster pace.”
Scoop up a wholesaler whose specialty is your particular market, and enjoy these benefits and more.
- Maintenance Team
Someone needs to handle the basic repairs, mow the lawn, and keep the landscaping looking neat. Have a team of plumbers, landscapers, and electricians on call. You can probably handle a few basic repairs on your own, but you should have a few individuals on retainer for larger jobs. This takes the stress off of you, and ensures a more profitable investment.