Thursday, January 29, 2015

Be a Black Sheep!


I spend a lot of time talking to Realtors who are also active investors.  Some of them got their license to assist in their investment business.  Some of them were Realtors first who saw the opportunity in creative real estate.  A common thread emerges when I talk to them about their brokerage... they feel like the black sheep.

You see, many brokerages are still resting on the laurels of the old traditional ways of practicing real estate. That means sales meetings, desk duty, elaborate listing presentations, open houses and property tours. And, of course, a broker who is preoccupied with how many listings and buyer rep agreements you have.  A broker who wants you to produce for them!

Real estate investors think different though! We spend our time worrying less about the number of listings we have (some of my agents have never had a listing... and I'm okay with that!) and more time beating the pavement, talking to sellers, calling leads, networking with other investors, looking for the motivated sellers and the DEALS.

As a real estate broker who is also an active investor I understand this difference, and at StepStone Realty we embrace the new cutting edge way of doing real estate.  We understand that some sellers don't want to or can't list their properties but just need a quick cash offer.  We can do that! Some seller's want to list a really ugly house! Hey.. if it's priced right I'll do that too! We understand that just because we have our license does not mean we cannot take advantage of our skills and knowledge to make money for ourselves while also helping meet seller's needs.

By freeing ourselves from the old tired ways of doing real estate we are able to break the mold and practice creative real estate while also providing the more traditional real estate services.  So, if you are a black sheep in your office maybe it's time to join us!


Wednesday, January 21, 2015

The Lunch Tour Continues to San Antonio: Why the war between Investors and Agents?

Free Luncheon to Find Out!  WEDNESDAY JAN 28th!


Join us for a Free luncheon next Wednesday (28th) at the Holiday Inn Hotel & Suites San Antonio Northwest, from 11:00 to 1:00 

Holiday Inn Hotel & Suites San Antonio Northwest
5535 University Heights Blvd., San Antonio, Texas 78249
Why the war between Investors and Agents? 

We will be speaking about the divide between the creative side of real estate and the traditional side of real estate and how myths and misinformation have kept agents and investors from realizing how they can take advantage of both! 

Agents: Learn why you should embrace the creative side even though your broker is telling you not to! 

Investors: Learn why getting your license doesn't keep you from doing creative deals! 

Be both! When you embrace both sides, you are armed with a full arsenal to handle your leads and convert more into money! 

We will discuss how embracing both will give you a competitive edge and increase conversion rates and allow you to walk away with more contracts and make more money. 

You will also learn why StepStone Realty is a brokerage tailored for investor-agents. No sales job, just information. 

And worst case, you get a free lunch, some great nuggets for how to deal with sellers, and some good networking with like-minded professionals. 

We hope to see you there. 

Spots are limited. To claim yours, and so we have an accurate head-count for food, please RSVP by 

-- emailing dan@stepstonetexas.com 
-- Calling/Texting Dan : 512-731-4541 
-- Filling out our form online: http://stepstonetexas.com/events.php 

To see more what we are about, visit StepStoneTexas.com 

We hope to see you next Wednesday! 

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Turn Your Sellers into Liars

Most investors, when that lead call comes in, have a script they follow, and a bunch of questions they ask.

I cannot imagine being on the other end of that call.  Being a distressed seller, reaching out for help, not knowing who I am calling.... only to be asked intrusive questions about my life.  What do I owe on my house?  Am I behind on payments?  How much will I sell it for?

Who IS this person asking me all of these things?  Its just a voice on the other end of the line.

Investors ask these questions and too often illicit a response they do not want... a lie.

And can you blame the seller for lying?  I don't think I would truthfully tell a voice on a phone call if I were behind on my payments.

The problem is, now you have locked your seller into those answers.  When you meet face to face, the seller now has to continue to tell you they are not behind, or they have to have a certain price for their property, otherwise they have to admit they lied to you on the phone.  You have turned your seller into a liar.

So why do investors ask so many questions?  Because they have to.  They have to screen-out sellers for motivation and equity, otherwise they might "waste their time" going to an appointment only to find they have no real solution for the seller, and leave empty-handed.

That is not a problem for us.  Since we are investors AND agents, we can offer ANY solution to a seller, and that means there is no reason to not skip the laundry list of lie-inducing questions, and just go meet the seller!  Personally, I have one question I ask a seller.  "When can I come see the property?"

When you meet with the seller, you get the REAL story... the truth.

No longer is the seller talking to some probable corporate stalker on the phone, but a real person there to help.

We consider any contract a victory, whether that is a contract to buy, or a contract to list.  So we do not screen sellers, because every seller can use our help.

Because of that, we beat out our competition!  While others are screening callers, scaring them off, and turning them into liars, we are already at the property, talking with our sellers, finding out their needs and offering real solutions.

That is the joy of real estate without limits!

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Why the war between Investors and Agents? Free Luncheon to Find Out!

Join us for a Free luncheon this Friday (16th) at the Tech Ranch in Austin, from 11:00 to 1:00 

Tech Ranch Austin
8920 Business Park Dr., Austin, TX 78759


Why the war between Investors and Agents? 

We will be speaking about the divide between the creative side of real estate and the traditional side of real estate and how myths and misinformation have kept agents and investors from realizing how they can take advantage of both! 

Agents: Learn why you should embrace the creative side even though your broker is telling you not to! 

Investors: Learn why getting your license doesn't keep you from doing creative deals! 

Be both! When you embrace both sides, you are armed with a full arsenal to handle your leads and convert more into money! 

We will discuss how embracing both will give you a competitive edge and increase conversion rates and allow you to walk away with more contracts and make more money. 

You will also learn why StepStone Realty is a brokerage tailored for investor-agents. No sales job, just information. 

And worst case, you get a free lunch, some great nuggets for how to deal with sellers, and some good networking with like-minded professionals. 

We hope to see you there. 

Spots are limited. To claim yours, and so we have an accurate head-count for food, please RSVP by 

-- emailing dan@stepstonetexas.com 
-- Calling/Texting Dan : 512-731-4541 
-- Filling out our form online: http://stepstonetexas.com/events.php 

To see more what we are about, visit StepStoneTexas.com 

We hope to see you Friday

Thursday, January 8, 2015

MythBusters: Getting Your Real Estate License



When my husband, Dan, came to me about nine years ago and suggested I get my real estate license I felt a little horrified! Immediately, I had the image of myself wearing a gold coat and pearls, on the side of the road putting in an Open House sign while trying to keep my skirt from flying up in the wind. Now, eight years later I am the Broker of a growing Real Estate firm and I wouldn't change a thing.

I talk to a lot of investors about getting a real estate license and I hear a lot of myths and misconceptions about why they think it is a bad idea.  I also talk to a lot of investors with their real estate license and most of them think their license is one of their most valuable investment tools. The trick is to get past all those fears and misconceptions to truly see the advantage of a real estate license. So, let's talk about some of those myths.

If I get my real estate license I'll have to spend my time showing houses to buyers, giving listing presentations, doing desk duty at the real estate office, and I'll have a broker bugging me about my sale stats. 

While these things might be true for some brokerages who are stuck in the old, traditional way of selling real estate that is not the case at StepStone Realty! We believe that our time is best spent not in the office perfecting our listing presentations and preparing our yearly calendar magnets, but instead out of the office, on the road, meeting with sellers, networking with investors and beating the pavement. Some Brokers only see your value by the number of listings you have but I have a different point of view. As an investor myself, I understand that there is much more that can be accomplished than simply representing sellers and buyers.  My agents are individuals, self-driven professionals who are taking a very active role in the real estate market. We don't have sales meetings, phone duty, or any of the other mundane requirements you might envision.  We give you the freedom and support to make more money doing what you are good at... investing in real estate.

If I get my real estate license I won't be able to buy property for myself, I won't be able to buy properties Sub To, I won't be able to wholesale properties, I won't be able to....

Aside from the fear of getting stuck a traditional real estate role is the fear of getting stuck in traditional real estate deals. This is a very valid concern for investors.  After all, if you can't do creative real estate you may as well become a traditional real estate agent. While there are brokerages who will not allow their salespeople to practice creative real estate that is not the case at StepStone Realty. Because I'm an active investor myself I understand the creative side of real estate, I'm not scared of it and I can help you do it correctly. It's my job to keep you on the straight and narrow but that does not mean limiting you from doing valid, legal and creative real estate.

If I get my real estate license I will have to provide the sellers with comps when I make them an offer.

This is my favorite. I've heard it so many times and yet through all the numerous classes I've had to take for my license it's never come up.  I did some research and couldn't find anything stating this to be the case.  So, just to be sure I called Texas Association of Realtors Legal Hotline (A very cool perk of having a license) and asked. I explained to the TAR attorney that I'm an investor as well as broker and advertise that I buy houses.  When I make an offer to a seller, besides letting them know I'm a licensed agent, do I need to show them comps? I love his response; "Why would you do that... that would hurt your negotiating position". I think this is a great point.  Just because you have a license doesn't mean you don't have a right to negotiate and purchase property for your own benefit.

It's true that as a licensed agent I have do disclose my status as such to sellers and buyers.  However, that does not mean you don't have a right to be an active participant in the real estate market.  Of all the active investors I know who also have a license you would be hard pressed to find one who lost a deal or was put at a disadvantage because they had a license.  In fact, the very opposite is true.  The tools and extra income options you get from having a license put you at an advantage over all the investors who don't have their license.

That is Real Estate Without Limits!

To learn more about the strategies Dan and I use to make the most out of being investor and holding a real estate license join us for one of our upcoming luncheons.