Anyone can do it. The thing about real estate is that it’s everywhere, and not only that, but everyone needs it. In any city or town across the United States there are homes being bought and sold every day. This was a major appeal to me when I first became interested in real estate. No matter where you are or what you’re doing, you can start a successful career in real estate investing.
You literally don’t need to use any of your own money - but this doesn’t mean you don’t need money. I had no money. By no money, I mean I didn’t have enough to just get started on my own. I had a few thousand dollars in savings that would support me should I go without a job for an extended period of time - but by no means was it nearly enough to venture out investing in real estate. I developed an urge - a vision - of what I wanted to accomplish in life, and it directly correlated to real estate.
I called friends & family, texted them, messaged them on Facebook, joined online real estate investment communities, socialized, networked, asked questions, and developed a plan. Since I didn’t have the money necessary to invest on my own, I had to find someone that would trust me with their money. This isn’t easy to do, nor should it be, but it’s a necessary step. Instead of finding just one investor, I found three. This made it a bit easier to ask them for money because it was smaller increments from multiple people. I researched the market, interest rates, and created an investment strategy that would be difficult to turn down - offering a higher than average return on the money being borrowed.
When you don’t have money and you’re asking for a lot of it, you better be passionate, enthusiastic, and informed. The idea to begin a career in real estate turned into a passion before I ever bought my first property or secured my first investor. I was committed to an idea and that idea was to be a successful real estate investor. Without a real palpable passion and enthusiasm, one that can be perceived and felt, I would have never convinced anyone to lend me money to start into real estate. So as you can see, you don’t need money, but you need a lot of other things - a real passion and enthusiasm is the foundation.
When the investors heard my plan, felt my passion and enthusiasm, and looked at the projected returns on their investment - I made it nearly impossible to say no. But it’s not enough to just secure an investment, you must know what to do with it and how to utilize every dollar.
I considered the opportunity I had with our original investors the only one, and because I didn’t have money to risk, I had to put my time and energy at risk to push forward. My partner and I both had regular jobs, jobs we relied on to support ourselves and our families, and we knew that if we were going to make this happen, we were going to have to work very hard, with painfully long hours each week, and with no returns on our effort for a very long time. We committed ourselves to the idea - the passion - and never, to this day, have waivered.
It’s important to note that we are not proud of this, we just carried on as if we were already successful, because it wasn’t a burden, it was something we voluntarily wanted to do. When you pursue something you love, that’s when you are successful. Any money or acclaim that may result from following that passion is just a bonus. Enough with the philosophical talk.
It is not easy. It is not easy. It is not easy. It is not easy. It is not easy. It is not easy. It is not easy. Do you still think it will be easy? Well, it won’t be. Real estate investment relies on a broad network of individuals and firms that all need to work together in order to make it happen. If one person or part isn’t in tune with the others, it can (and will) delay the process, and even threaten to end it.
My partner & I, at the very onset of our investing in real estate, before we ever secured investors with capital funding, experienced unexpected setbacks. This continues to happen today and will always happen. Things will never function perfectly, and they will always go smoother at some times and much worse at others. The name of the game then becomes preparation and risk management.
Though you don’t need (your own) money to invest in real estate, you need someone’s money. And beyond money, be prepared to give everything else. A lot of people write about investing in real estate with no money, by wholesaling properties, or by using bank loans, or using equity in your current home, or using hard/private money lenders, or any other way, but the bottom line is you need someone’s money, and more importantly, you need to give a lot more than you’re getting back - at least for a while.
If you don’t have a passion for it - in other words, if you can’t see yourself doing it for the rest of your life - then stop now and find something else to do. If you don’t have time to do it, make time to do it, and if you can’t make time to do it, then find something else to do.
From my experience, a guy who knew next to nothing about real estate just 2 years ago, and who is now a partner in a successful real estate group, these are the basic necessities/qualities to start investing in real estate with no money:
you need an interest, that turns into a passion, that breeds a plan
you need to find someone to tell that plan to - energetically, enthusiastically, and knowledgeably - that will believe in you and your vision and want to invest their hard-earned money in you (not the company, but you)
you need to expect to sacrifice a lot of time, with little to show for it, for a long time
you need to keep working, learning, pursuing, growing, networking, building relationships, and so so much more
I regularly help newcomers to the real estate industry with questions or concerns they may have. Also, and equally important, I seek to learn from those that surround me, whether younger or older, and regardless of experience. So please feel free to leave a comment below or email me at any time: firstname.lastname@example.org