I wanted to post this so that we can learn from our mistakes and other peoples mistakes. I got the books "Profit from real estate right now" and "Be a Real Estate Millionaire" last year. I read each cover to finish in one sitting, they were amazing books.
The problem is I didn't get the message. As soon as I finished them I searched for a mortgage, and purchased a 3bed/1bath each duplex. The seller wanted $85,000 for this property, it had been on the market for almost 300 days.
So, since I knew it had been on the market so long, I knew I would have negotiating power. I took a look with a real estate agent, and the place needed some work so I offered the seller $75,000 and $2500 at close, coming to 72,500. He accepted, I thought I was getting an amazing deal. I started remodeling it myself because I could build a house from the ground up if I wanted to.
Well that was back in May 09, its now Feb 2 and the downstairs unit has a renter moving in at the end of the month. Holding costs have been 615.33(PITI) each month plus utilities(cheap until this winter only 20-30 dollars a unit), and on top of that several thousand in materials for remodeling.
Well you might be saying, holy smokes! I've learned a lot, especially from this past monthly call that Dean did. Don't waste your time remodeling yourself, make money with phone calls not with a hammer. Start out with assignments, bird dogs, and lease options. Don't buy the house that needs a complete rehab unless you get it DIRT CHEAP(I should have offered $25,000, not $72,500).
So, that is what I've been doing, I've reread the books and rethought the process on making money in real estate. I've been building my buyers list over the last 2 days and I'm amazed how easy it is.
I hope this helps someone. I still love REAL ESTATE INVESTING!