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Category Archives for "REI Today Podcast"

Jun 14

ELLEN DEGENERES SUED for laughing at southern agent | Episode 76

By Carole Ellis | REI Today Podcast

If ELLEN DEGENERES laughed at you on national television, what would you do? In the case of one Georgia real estate agent, you’d fire up your legal guns. I’ll tell you all the details in today’s episode. I’m Carole Ellis. This is episode 76.

So what would YOU do if daytime’s darling Ellen Degeneres laughed at you on her talk show and you weren’t even there to defend yourself? Titi Pierce, a Georgia real estate agent, recently had this experience and I’ll tell you what SHE’S doing: seeking thousands of dollars in damages. You need to hear about this lawsuit because it all stemmed from a picture that Ellen showed of Ms. Pierce’s real estate sign in front of a home that she was selling, and a potential error in judgment that Ellen may have made concerning whether it was okay to show the sign on her show.

Before we get into that, however, I want to take a quick minute to talk about thousands of dollars, though. $42,000 to be exact. That’s how much money an investor named Patrick recently generated in his real estate investing busienss without fixing up houses, flipping houses, or even, the king of all hands-off-investing, wholesaling houses while still actually being involved in real estate investing. He told me that this “hands off” investing is quote “the best thing I have ever done for my real estate business” and noted that in addition to $42,000 he’s already made, he has more closings lined up in the wings. Find out how Patrick was able to start making money in real estate literally without getting the first smudge of paint or speck of dust on him in our exclusive REI Today training at www.rei.today/42K (because that’s what Patrick made so far). That’s www.rei.today/42K. I think you’ll be extremely intrigued by this strategy.

Now, let’s get back to one of America’s favorite comediennes caught in what appears to be an atypical display of unkindness. Ellen DeGeneres always comes across as nice, good-tempered, kind lady in her comedy and on her television shows, but Titi Pierce says that being the butt of one of Ellen’s jokes leaves you feeling anything but warm and fuzzy. Ms. Pierce is suing Ellen for showing her real estate sign on daytime television without blurring out the company name, contact number, or Titi’s name, and making fun of name by mispronouncing it “Titty.” The bit was part of a skit about a certain “busty” part of the female anatomy. Ms. Pierce was actually on her way to a funeral when she began to receive prank calls about her name and eventually learned that she’d been featured on Ellen’s show and that her name had been mispronounced. Not only did she not receive a response, but the episode was re-aired and she once again received negative attention to her real estate business and unpleasant, offensive calls on her personal cell phone number, which was on the sign, the plaintiff claims. She is seeking at least $75,000 in damages.

So what can we learn from this little episode? Well, obviously, first of all most of us don’t like having people laugh at our names, so that’s generally bad business even for media darlings like Ellen. Ms. Pierce says that her name means “Flower” and that it wasn’t even pronounced correctly in the offensive television episode. If nothing else, it was kind of mean-spirited of Ellen and given how nasty people can be to each other in the anonymity of the internet, I’m not surprised that Ms. Pierce received unpleasant phone calls and commentary in the aftermath.

Second, default to protecting privacy. In today’s world, it’s easier than ever to share something that you have no legal right to share, and it’s easier than ever for someone to find out you did it and sue you. Now this is not a legal show and I am not a lawyer, but a general rule of thumb is to simply GET PERMISSION before you use images, particularly if you might profit from those images’ use, because you had better believe the person who actually has the rights to those images (and heads up, it’s not always the person who took the phot) will turn up eventually if your promotion is successful.

And finally, when posting your contact information on public signs, it may behoove you to place a little bit of insulation in between yourself and a public that is not always so well behaved. It is NOT Ms. Pierce’s fault that she got nasty phone calls about a national television personality making fun of her name. Period. However, as anyone who has ever put their phone number on Craigslist ads knows, there are some whackos out there and they don’t always wait on Ellen to get into gear. An 800- number or even just an automated voicemail will go a long way toward keeping a little bit of distance between you and everyone who walks past your business sign.

If you want to read all the details of this case that are out there at this point in time and draw your own conclusions about whether Ellen, Ms. Pierce, both, or neither are at fault, then you can read the extended report in the REI Today Vault. It’s labeled with today’s episode number, 76. And if you’re not yet a member, don’t worry!  just text REITODAY no spaces no periods to 33444 and I’ll provide you with fast, immediate access to this startling information as well as sending you straight to a treasure  trove of trainings, uncut interviews, breaking news coverage, and a lot more timely, insightful information that will help make your real estate investing safer, faster, and more profitable. That’s REITODAY no spaces no periods to 33444 or go to www.rei.today/vault for more information right now.

And remember, when you join us, you’ll also be able to GROW YOUR NETWORK by interacting with me and your fellow listeners to REI Today… so stop by to ask questions, make comments and network with other investors across the country.

REI Nation, thanks for listening in. Now, more than ever, please remember this:

Your best investment is ALWAYS your own education.

Jun 13

4 DEAL-KILLING WORDS to never say | Episode 75

By Carole Ellis | REI Today Podcast

How would you like to know the 4 DEAL-KILLING WORDS that are destroying your real estate investments every time you speak them? I’ve got the phrase to avoid in today’s episode. I’m Carole Ellis. This is Episode 75.

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So, wouldn’t you want someone to TELL YOU if you were saying a certain four words that were identified, by experts in the field, as the MOST LIKELY to derail your real estate investing and your deals? Because I’ve got some good news and some bad news here. The bad news is they’re almost certainly part of your daily lexicon. The good news is, I’m about to tell you what they are.

Before I do, however, I’ve got five GREAT words that you’re really going to love to share with you. Are you ready? Count em’: Free money from the government.  And as a tag on the end, I’m going to make it an even 10: Free money from the government for your real estate investing. That’s right: we’ve got the inside scoop on how to get free grant money from the federal, state, and local government, for your real estate deals. Check out all the details in this free training, which tells you everything from exactly WHAT TO SAY to land loans you never have to pay back to where to look to find a literally treasure trove of funding for your real estate business, your kids’ college, and just about any other entrepreneurial dream you’ve ever had. It’s incredible, and you can view that exclusive REI Today training right now at www.rei.today/freemoney (one word, and easy to remember!). That’s www.rei.today/freemoney. Please do not pass up the opportunity to view this limited-time training. It’s incredible.

Now, back to those four deal-killing words. Here’s, well, the deal: According to Travis Bradberry, a Forbes contributor who specializes in the mental functions that contribute to failure, among other things, saying a certain four words can actually derail just about any project, including massively profitable deals. In a recently published book on the topic, Bradberry noted that the words “I don’t like it” are some of the most detrimental to progress because they lead to PROCRASTINATION in a significant, meaningful way.

Bradberry compared the issue to eating dessert before your vegetables. If you always allow yourself to put off eating your vegetables, you’ll probably never eat any, even though you KNOW that kale is better for you than ice cream. When it comes to your real estate investing, you KNOW that even the part of the deal you hate the most, whether it’s talking to sellers, running the numbers, finalizing due diligence, or filling out contracts, is ultimately GOOD for you and your bottom line. However, the more you tell yourself that you don’t like doing it, the more likely you are to put it off. The longer it is put off, the more likely it is that you’ll either do the task poorly or leave it too late and not do it at all. And then instead of a done deal on your hands you have a huge missed opportunity.

So here’s a tip from Travis himself (and I think it’s a great one):

Make it a rule that you cannot touch any other project or task until you’ve finished the quote “dreaded one,” he said, adding, “In this way, you are policing yourself by forcing yourself to eat your veggies before you can have dessert.”

I challenge you to do this for just one week and see how it affects your business and your life in general. Putting things off isn’t just bad for your bottom line, it’s bad for your health. A recent study conducted by psychologists at Case Western Reserve University proved this point, indicating that students who turned in college papers early had lower stress levels, better overall health, less hypertension, lower risk of heart disease, and had healthier lifestyles. If you’d like a full list of researched and proven ways to BEAT the procrastination bug, be sure to check out our compilation derived from these research papers in the REI Today Vault.

Check it out at www.rei.today/Vault right now, and if you’re not yet a member then don’t worry a bit, just text REITODAY no spaces no periods to 33444 and I’ll provide you with fast, immediate access to this startling information as well as sending you straight to a treasure  trove of trainings, uncut interviews, breaking news coverage, and a lot more timely, insightful information that will help make your real estate investing safer, faster, and more profitable. That’s REITODAY no spaces no periods to 33444 or go to www.rei.today/vault for more information right now.

And remember, when you join us, you’ll also be able to GROW YOUR NETWORK by interacting with me and your fellow listeners to REI Today… so stop by to ask questions, make comments and network with other investors across the country..

REI Nation, thanks for listening in. Now, more than ever, please remember this:

Your best investment is ALWAYS your own education.

Jun 03

why FEMALE HOMEBUYERS are a tougher sell than men | Episode 74

By Carole Ellis | REI Today Podcast

The gender gap is back, and it’s making harder to sell homes to women. A new survey has some disturbing new evidence indicating a major gender-related issue that we women have with home-buying, and let me just say that the “actionable advice” that the researchers are giving to go along with the survey is, well, a bit troubling as well. I’ll tell you all the details in today’s episode. I’m Carole Ellis. This is Episode 74.

So, the gender gap is back in housing, and it’s manifesting in a way that you might not have seen coming. According to ValueInsured’s Modern Homebuyer Survey, women have far less CONFIDENCE in real estate than men even though they say that they want to own their own home far more frequently than men do. We’ll get into the numbers in a just a minute (not to mention the “advice” from the analysts about just how to deal with this lack of confidence), but first I want to take a minute to bring up a certain woman who definitely does NOT lack confidence in real estate – and if you take a few lessons from her you certainly won’t either. This lady is one of my favorite investors, Sue Nelson, and you’ve probably heard me talk about how her first deal was a 104-unit apartment complex and now she owns more than 2000 units and flips commercial properties for six-digit profits on a REGULAR basis (right along with her students, I might add). Well, Sue was in my hometown a few weeks ago, and I had the pleasure of attending one of her small mastermind trainings where her most active students get together, evaluate a city, and get deals done, and let me tell you, this former art-teacher-turned-bigtime-commercial-investor does not mess around. They are on FIRE at this mastermind, and they’re picking out new deals, picking apart old ones, and basically just making it happen. Sue has what I would consider to be the most important aspect of real estate down pat – that would be confidence in her numbers, by the way – and if you want to know how she does it, then I strongly encourage you to attend a free training she provided to REI Today listeners at www.rei.today/IMPORTANT. Check it out for the details on how she flips her deals (including that first MAJOR one) and how she makes sure that her CONFIDENCE in her numbers is always well-placed and SPOT ON. That’s www.rei.today/IMPORTANT, because it’s important you check this out right away.

Now, let’s get back to the gender gap and what the so-called “experts” say we need to do about it. First, the numbers:

According to ValueInsured’s survey, roughly three in every four women say that they want to own a home, compared to about two in every three men. So slightly more women than men say that they don’t own a home but want to. However, when it comes to actually getting their name on the deed, women are far less likely to end up doing so for a variety of reasons. Mainly, they said that they don’t think the housing market is healthy (less than half believe it is), don’t think it’s a secure investment in today’s economy (less than two-thirds believe it is), and don’t feel that they can afford the downpayment, (less than one-third believe that they can). Men were far, far more confident in all three of these areas and also were far, far more likely to say with confidence that they could sell their existing home right now for more than they paid for it than women were.

So, obviously, there are some practical issues that probably are influencing the results of this survey, but for now, let’s focus on what the survey (and it’s analysts) are telling us about women and real estate. For starters, one thing that the survey exposed was that women and men have very different ideas about quote “The American Dream.” Women say it is mainly being debt free, while men say it is, as we’ve all heard time and again, owning their own home. What’s really interesting, however, is that what ValueInsured, the National Association of Realtors, and basically every other analyst and media outlet out there got out of this survey. You ready? This is a direct quote from the NAR:

“Women buying homes may need more reassurance and confidence in a real estate transaction than men.” That’s right. Ultimately, what the analysts derived is not that women might be more risk-averse than men when it comes to investing (it’s a proven fact) or that they might have different factors than men by which they evaluate real estate investments or the money that they sink into their home (clearly, women are less likely than men to view their home as an investment, which isn’t all bad). Instead, it’s that we need reassurance.

So what does this mean for men and women in real estate? Well, I think as I said at the beginning of this episode, the KEY THING is really that you need to have confidence IN YOUR NUMBERS. Based on ValueInsured’s survey, what I’m getting out of it is that women don’t need reassurance, they need cold hard facts that show they’re getting what they want out of a home purchase and, furthermore, can afford it. That’s not a bad thing! And guys, I’m not bashing you either. It is a GOOD thing to have confidence in your purchases, and I know a lot of guys probably cited owning their own home as the most important part of the American dream because culturally, a lot of the women in your lives rely on you (as they should) to provide the path to that ownership with them. In the end, the key takeaway here is that women and men buy real estate when they feel comfortable and confident in the numbers, and that’s a good thing because it means if your numbers are sound, then you will find a buyer for your deal, all gender considerations aside.

If you like the idea of sound numbers (and an equation to make sure that they work EVERY TIME), then I encourage you to sign up for our exclusive REI Today training with Sue Nelson, who I mentioned at the beginning of this episode. You can access it immediately at http://www.rei.today/IMPORTANT. And if you want to learn more about the gender gap and how it affects you INTEREST RATES on home loans, then take a quick peek in the REI Today Vault. Women get worse mortgage rates than men, and it’s conclusively NOT because of what you’re probably expecting. Check it out at www.rei.today/Vault right now, and if you’re not yet a member then don’t worry a bit, just text REITODAY no spaces no periods to 33444 and I’ll provide you with fast, immediate access to this startling information as well as sending you straight to a treasure  trove of trainings, uncut interviews, breaking news coverage, and a lot more timely, insightful information that will help make your real estate investing safer, faster, and more profitable. That’s REITODAY no spaces no periods to 33444 or go to www.rei.today/vault for more information right now.

And remember, when you join us, you’ll When you do that, you’ll also be able to GROW YOUR NETWORK by interacting with me and your fellow listeners to REI Today… so stop by to ask questions, make comments and network with other investors across the country in addition to having the chance to interact directly with Sue herself.

REI Nation, thanks for listening in. Now, more than ever, please remember this:

Your best investment is ALWAYS your own education.

Jun 02

the SHARK TANK LIE about real estate investing | Episode 73

By Carole Ellis | REI Today Podcast

 

Would you believe that one of the most popular shows on television is HORRIBLY MISLEADING real estate investors and entrepreneurs every time it airs? Don’t get caught by the lie. Get all the details in today’s episode. I’m Carole Ellis. This is Episode 73.

So can you believe that one of the most popular shows on television – probably one of the most aspirational shows for a lot of investors and small business owners – is actually misleading real estate investors and small business owners in nearly every episode? I’ll tell you where they’re leading you wrong (and give you a great, easy solution to the problem) today, but first I want to take a quick 30 seconds to mention something that YOU MISSED. That’s right: you missed it. Last night, REI Today Listeners engaged LIVE with the pros at Credit Card Builders, the premier experts on building BUSINESS CREDIT for real estate investors and entrepreneurs. Some very interesting questions were asked and answered (for example, how exactly do you get $200,000 for a commercial building or $50,000 for medical marijuana business) and YOU MISSED IT! So if you think that your business could do with a cash infusion, don’t let this slide twice. Go to www.rei.today/bigcredit (one word, BIGCREDIT) and get registered for Ari and Mike’s next training. They’re not messing around; they get major corporate credit lines for investors even if you have bankruptcies, foreclosures, or a lousy credit score, and they also give out a really nice bonus ($3,500 worth of bonus, to be precise) just for being on the call. Get your spot right now at www.rei.today/BIGCREDIT, and don’t miss this twice. Seriously.

Now, back to the SHARK TANK LIE that could seriously slow down (if not stall out entirely) your real estate investing success. Here’s the deal:

I love Shark Tank, and I suspect you do too. After all, it’s just so FUN to watch investors and business owners tell that panel how they’ve worked hard, come up with great ideas, and are ready to grow their business with the right angel investor. And honestly, it’s fun to see the creativity and the squirming when the questions get tough. Haven’t you ever thought: if I could just GET IN THERE, I know they’d take me! I’m way better than these guys…And there’s the LIE.

Don’t worry: I’m not about to tell you that the Shark Tankers are ringers. And I’m not about to tell you that they’re better than you at what they do than you are at what you do. But I am here to tell you that those “angel investors,” while they’re certainly helping certain shark tank participants grow their business, are not entirely angelic. They’re making a serious, serious profit in a lot of cases, and that’s not the lie either. Shark Tank is up front: it’s about business and making money. But the lie that comes out of the show a lot of the time is that the only way to “make it big” is to give away your business. Here’s what our resident corporate credit expert, Ari Page, had to say about Shark Tank:

“On that show, investors might give away half their company, 50 percent of it, for $50,000 in seed capital,” he said, noting that although that 50,000 could be life-changing, getting it via Shark Tank methods involves letting someone else into the driver’s seat in your business, usually permanently. “Instead, business credit keeps you in the driver’s seat,” he pointed out, adding that business credit also can be used more flexibly than most real estate loans and tends to be just about the easiest type of business or investment funding to ACCESS, which is huge for real estate investors who may have many, many reasons that they need seed capital (think renovations, property purchases, insurance, contractors advances, the list goes on and on) that might not necessarily be included in the “fine print” on a loan, cash advance, or even angel investor investment. “Corporate credit keeps YOU, as an individual, OUT of the deal entirely,” he noted, adding that this is crucial because it enables ANYONE with a solid business plan (and do you think real estate just might qualify there?) to grow their business regardless of personal credit history.

You can hear Ari’s entire training (and a lot more of his thoughts on Shark Tank, business credit, and getting unsecured, cash credit, zero-interest funding for your real estate investing business (his company has raised over $200 million in 0 percent unsecured funding just since 2008 for investors and small business owners) by going, right now, to www.rei.today/bigcredit (one word, BIGCREDIT) and signing up for Credit Card Builders EXTREMELY LIMITED TIME TRAINING. I mentioned it earlier, and I’m going to say it again: These guys are not messing around. Did you hear me say more than $200 million? And that’s not just for one single blockbuster company. That’s tens and even hundreds of thousands of dollars for investors and small business owners JUST LIKE YOU all over the country. Go ot www.rei.today/BIGCREDIT for all the information, and snag that $3,500 worth of bonuses just for attending as well. Ladies and gentlemen, you don’t want to miss this one. It could change everything, including the way you see real estate, permanently.

REI Nation, thanks for listening in, and always remember this:

Your best investment is your own education.

Jun 02

Why Most INVESTORS CAN’T GET FUNDING (It’s Your Fault) | Episode 72

By Carole Ellis | REI Today Podcast

Wouldn’t you like to know a way to get as much as $250,000 in UNSECURED FUNDING for your real estate deals even if you have bankruptcies, foreclosures, or late payments on your personal credit? If you could use that kind of funding to build your real estate business, then listen up. I’ve got all the details in today’s episode. I’m Carole Ellis. This is Episode 72.

How would you like to know how to get a HUGE LINE OF CREDIT with which to fund your real estate investing business even if you have foreclosures, bankruptcies, or late payments and a poor personal credit score? If that sounds like something you could use starting TODAY, then you’re going to love today’s episode. I interviewed two of the premier experts in a certain type of credit (this is not credit repair, folks, this is a real, live line of credit) and they told me (and, by extension, YOU, you lucky REI Today listeners) how to make this happen so that you can STOP looking for funding and START doing deals, pronto.

I’ll tell you all about it in just minute, but first I want to take just 30 seconds to bring up something pretty important that a lot of listeners brought up last week. You guys have been LOVING the Trump Tracker (thank you, by the way, and if you haven’t signed up yet, you can do so at www.rei.today/trumptracker, one word) but I’ve had so many requests for more information about Hilary and even Bernie (yes, a few of you either are “feeling the bern” or feeling concerned, I’m not sure which) and their possible influence on our national housing market that I’ve gotten right to work pulling together some very important information on both of these potential presidential candidates and their housing history. It’s coming very soon, so keep an eye on the REI Today Vault (or, if you subscribe to Trump Tracker, you’ll get it automatically) for a comprehensive real estate study on the remaining three presidential potentials left in the race. And whether you love him or hate him, go ahead and sign up for the Trump Tracker as well at www.rei.today/TrumpTracker where we’ll provide you with weekly updates about what the Donald is up to whether it’s taking on the media in a press conference or creating a stir in national publications that fear he’ll take over the media coverage of the presidential race completely. It’s your race, guys, your housing market and your country. You need to know what this guy (and his competition) are up to!

Now, back to the biggest reason YOU can’t get funding for your real estate deals (and what to do about it)!

So,  here’s the deal: if you ask most new real estate investors what their biggest stumbling block to getting started in real estate, to really getting involved is, they’ll tell you one simple thing: (and believe me, it’s the stumbling block for a LOT of things in life) MONEY. Most investors who truly have the drive to be successful are able, willing, and dedicated to their own education, so they know how to find deals and what to do with them once they’ve spotted them. And yes, there are ways out there for real estate investors to do deals without ever using any of their own money. It’s completely true, and I’ve seen plenty of people do it. However, in the end, wouldn’t it be EASIER to make your real estate investing business work – or hey, just about any other business endeavor for that matter – if you had some startup funding of some kind? Of course it would! And most investors have a major, major misconception about where their funding should come from: they think it either has to come from themselves or from ANOTHER INVESTOR, be it a private money lender or a bank making a mortgage loan. And that’s the kicker for a lot of investors because they can’t GET personal loans for their investing. Maybe you have a bankruptcy or a foreclosure on your records. Maybe you just have a low credit score. Heck, maybe you did get a loan for your first two or three real estate investments but the bank isn’t interested in loaning you any more money for more (hey, four mortgages starts to look a bit risky to a lot of lenders!)

So what do you do in this situation? Well, most investors give up. They either decide that they’ll have to put in sweat equity and hope for the best (and believe me, that’s not easy if you’re working one or two “quote unquote real jobs” and taking care of a family already) or they figure that real estate is something that is just not accessible for them. They never consider the THIRD OPTION, a CORPORATE CREDIT. We spoke to Credit Card Builders CEO Ari Page about this option at length, and he told us that there are four huge advantages to using BUSINESS CREDIT in real estate that most investors have no idea about. Ari is a business credit specialist who has been working with Credit Card Builders since 2009 to create alternatives to high interest lending for real estate investors and entrepreneurs. “Real estate investors should NEVER use their personal credit,” he explained, and pointed out four major advantages that a business line of credit has over just about any other real estate funding option.

First, he said, business credit is easier to access than just about any other type of credit. If you work with a bank to get a mortgage loan, you could be waiting 60 days, 90 days, or even longer to get approved. That’s a little long for a real estate investor as you well know!

Second, he pointed out, business credit is easier to SPEND. Most people think of a line of credit at a specialty store, like Home Depot or Lowes, when they think of corporate credit. However, Ari said, a true business line can be used in just about any venue for business-related purposes.

Third, you don’t get business credit based on your debt-to-income ratio! That’s huge if you were nodding your head a minute ago when I was talking about getting individual mortgages on your investment properties. They’re not looking at your personal credit AT ALL.

And finally, fourth, the credit is unsecured. Again, in case you didn’t hear me, they’re not looking at your personal credit! So if you have bankruptcies, foreclosures, late payments, just a plain old low or nonexistent credit score, then hey, that’s okay,  because (as it SHOULD BE IN REAL ESTATE), it’s NOT ABOUT YOU, it’s about your business. And if your business is sound, then your line of credit is likely to be also.

Now, if the idea of up to $250,000 in cash credit at ZERO INTEREST for your business has got your attention, you’re definitely going to want to hear the entire production and, perhaps even more exciting, Ari and his partner, Mike actually follow up the training session where they tell you HOW TO GET THIS TYPE OF CREDIT with a live QnA session. So don’t let it be YOUR FAULT any longer that you can’t get funding on your deals. Go to www.rei.today/bigcredit (one word BIGCREDIT) right now and reserve your spot. They do these trainings live and, as a result, they’re not always available and spaces are not always open. Don’t delay, go to www.rei.today/bigcredit (one word) right now. Not only can (and should) you access this funding for your own deals and business, but you can actually offer the SAME OPTIONS to your clients and buyers, thereby creating a FANTASTIC, BUILT-IN MARKET for your deals. And, if that wasn’t enough to convince you (yeah, right) then allow me to point out you’ll be getting a huge bonus ($3,500 worth, in fact) just for attending the training (and they line-item that sucker out, it is $3,500 worth no kidding). Head over to www.rei.today/bigcredit right now to reserve your spot, and remember, REI Nation, (as if this didn’t make it clear enough to you)

Your best investment is ALWAYS your own education.

May 31

FBI HIDES MICS to catch auction riggers | Episode 71

By Carole Ellis | REI Today Podcast

Sooooo…If you thought you could get away with rigging an auction by holding your nefarious planning meetings in a park or at a bus stop, think again. The FBI just uncovered an auction bid rigging scheme out in California by hiding microphones in trees, plants, light fixtures, and bus stops – and that’s just the beginning. Find out all the details in today’s episode. I’m Carole Ellis. This is Episode 71.

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So you’ve probably heard about bid rigging before, and it’s actually something that a lot of investors simply accept as part of the process of buying properties at auction because even when other, more experienced investors aren’t necessarily working together to keep other investors out, there are plenty of scenarios in which a more established buyer will actually pay more than they normally would to snag a property and hopefully scare off the competition. Overpaying on a property is perfectly legal, but rigging the auction, as you might imagine, is not, and you won’t believe the lengths that the FBI recently went to in order to try to expose suspected bid rigging in San Mateo and Alameda counties in California.

I’ll tell you all about it in just a minute, but first I want to take a second to mention something else that is basically RIGGED in our society today: YOUR CREDIT. That score determines SO MUCH about what you can and cannot do in your entire life, from where you live (even if you don’t buy) to what jobs you can get and what types of businesses you can even afford to start. That dumb little number, your CREDIT SCORE, has dominated your life long enough, in my opinion, and fortunately for you, I’m not alone in feeling that way. If your business could benefit from an infusion of $50,000 to $250,000 in cash credit at ZERO INTEREST (and I suspect you could find SOME WAY to leverage those funds, my savvy real estate investor listeners), then I strongly suggest you check out a free training provided LIVE for REI Today listeners by experts who have raised over $200 million in zero-percent unsecured funding since 2008. You CAN access this type of funding for your own deals and business and perhaps even more exciting, you can also offer it to your clients and buyers, not to mention that you get a HUGE BONUS just for attending the training with a more-than-$3,500 value. This training has a live Q and A and is offered only at specific times to a limited audience number, so sign up right now at www.rei.today/BIGCREDIT (one word, big credit) and reserve your seat. That’s www.rei.today/BIGCREDIT. Don’t go into Summer 2016 without the funding and support that you need to thrive in your real estate business. Go to www.rei.today/BIGCREDIT right now.

Now, let’s get back to where all in your local green space you need to be looking for the hidden mics…

So, the FBI originally hid the microphones basically all over San Mateo and Alameda because they suspected that some real estate investors in the area were rigging local auctions by agreeing not to bid against each other at the public auctions, then holding private, members-only auctions where the properties were sold again and the investor who made the original purchase pocketed the difference in the public auction price and that of the private auction. This is a tempting set-up because it tends to keep prices down and also enables investors to make some money just by buying low at the public auction. Bear in mind, also, that this is all ALLEGED, the investor who was actually indicted in 2014 as part of the conspiracy has pled not guilty and the other parties are just being investigated, not accused.

Anyway, the FBI put mics everywhere: in the courthouse where the auctions were held (those were hidden in light fixtures), in bus stops near the courthouse, in a statue inside the courthouse, in backpacks that they left lying around, and, reportedly (shockingly, the FBI is not confirming this) under rocks and trees throughout the Bay Area. So basically, if you were hanging out around Oakland Courthouse, they probably were listening. Kind of creepy, huh.

So anyway, not surprisingly, the defenses for the guys who are now facing investigation for bid rigging are pretty up in arms about all this recording, and I can’t say I blame them. After all, there was no warrant issued for a surveillance operation in the area. Individuals could have discussed the topic without actually being involved. Apparently you have the right to expect a conversation in a public place to remain private (as long as you have it quietly) and the FBI basically ignored this as well. So it’s a great big mess, and it’s unclear other than establishing that they can get away with this for extended periods of time, the FBI really accomplished much or even intended to. I’m going to just let that little conspiracy theory stew around in your brain for a minute.

So, the moral of the story, as it were, is simple: don’t participate in rigged auctions. The FBI doesn’t like it, it’s not legal, and your loving government will break its own laws in order to try to make sure you’re not breaking them. So now don’t you feel protected and loved?

If you want to learn more about the specific FBI actions (and privacy violations) out west or in your neck of the woods, then check out our extended coverage of this matter in the REI Today Vault at www.rei.today/vault. Not yet a member? No worries! Your privacy is safe with us, and you can get immediate access by just text REITODAY no spaces no periods to 33444 and I’ll provide you with fast, immediate access to this startling information as well as sending you straight to a treasure  trove of trainings, uncut interviews, breaking news coverage, and a lot more timely, insightful information that will help make your real estate investing safer, faster, and more profitable. That’s REITODAY no spaces no periods to 33444 or go to www.rei.today/vault for more information right now.

And remember, when you join us, you’ll When you do that, you’ll also be able to GROW YOUR NETWORK by interacting with me and your fellow listeners to REI Today… so stop by to ask questions, make comments and network with other investors across the country.

REI Nation, thanks for listening in. Now, more than ever, please remember this:

Your best investment is ALWAYS your own education.

 

May 25

Add $2,723 to your listing with LAUNDRY | Episode 70

By Carole Ellis | REI Today Podcast

How would you like to make a simple change to a small existing room in the house that could add about $2,723 to your list price when you put your home up for sale? I’ll tell you all about it in today’s episode. I’m Carole Ellis. This is episode 70.

So how does an extra $2,723 on your home value sound? If you like the way that change is rattling around, then you’re going to love the weird, completely overlooked remodel option that happens in what is probably one of the smallest rooms in your house for a really great bang for your buck. I’ll tell you all about it in just a minute, but first, I have got to mention some new research that has just come out that is very relevant for every one of you listening. This new study has pinpointed the cities across the country that are, by the numbers, the best cities for real estate investors. You can get all the details in our News and Networking Section at www.rei.today, and I encourage you to check it out immediately. I couldn’t wait to see where MY city was ranked, and I bet you can’t either. You might be missing a big opportunity that is literally in your own backyard.

Anyway, let’s get back to adding thousands to your listing price while doing your laundry…That’s right, the remodel we’re talking about is for the LAUNDRY ROOM! And it’s not really even that big of a remodel in most cases (how could it be, after all, it’s probably the smallest room in your house?) However, despite the diminutive size, the laundry room plays a huge role in a homeowner’s life. In fact, one in two homeowners blamed their laundry for loss of time with their family, directly, and 83 percent said that they were game for ANY home improvement that enabled them to spend more quality time on people and activities they love.

So that takes us, ladies and gentlemen, to the laundry room, where you can, according to Homewyse.com, net an ROI of 77 to 91 percent on a remodel immediately, although, as with all ROI numbers, those are estimates, market dependent, and not guaranteed. Homewyse defines a full laundry-room remodel as updated cabinetry (read, install cabinets with doors instead of shelves), a new sink (probably farmhouse), and nice lighting fixtures. Most design experts recommend adding some countertop space, if it’s an option, because that enables homeowners to do their folding as the clothes leave the dryer. Homewyse also notes that although green appliances do add to the value of a home if they are left, they also add to the amount of time it takes to do the laundry. In fact, according to Whirlpool, it now can take five times longer to DO the laundry thanks to water-saving appliances (though they’ve considerately balanced that out by producing machines that let you dump in an entire week’s worth of laundry at once – and you better factor new appliance scale in when you’re remodeling!).

So when you add in cabinetry, countertops, sinks, lighting, new paint, and nice appliances, you get an estimated material and labor cost that comes in right under $3,000, though that number may be low if you plan to include your appliances in the sale. And your first-year returns could be as much as 91 percent if you list immediately. That’s pretty exciting for a tiny, somewhat boring little room.

Of course, as with any remodel or upgrade, you need to do a bit of due diligence first to make sure that your upgrade reflects the needs of your buying community. After all, the wrong remodel can actually kill your profit margin in very short order! To get a checklist for evaluating a remodel in light of a local market, head over to the REI Today Vault at www.rei.today/vault and check out today’s episode’s supplemental materials (they’re labeled with the episode number). If you’re not yet a member, don’t worry! text REITODAY no spaces no periods to 33444 and I’ll immediately send you the information you need to get that access and ALSO provide you with fast, immediate access to all sorts of great trainings, news coverage, interviews, and lot more timely information that will help make your investing safer, faster, and more profitable.

And remember, when you do that, you’ll also be able to GROW YOUR NETWORK by interacting with me and your fellow listeners to REI Today… so stop by to ask questions, make comments and network with other investors across the country. Text REITODAY no spaces no periods to 33444 or head over to www.rei.today/vault right now.

REI Nation, thanks for listening in and always remember this:

Your best investment is your own education.

May 25

how to compete in the DEMENTIA MARKET | Episode 69

By Carole Ellis | REI Today Podcast

Wouldn’t you like to know how to develop a LOCAL MONOPOLY in a market that demands top dollar, desperately needs service, and that most people just can’t bear to get into? If this sounds like an opportunity a-wastin’, you’re right! I’ve got all the details (including the uncomfortable ones) in today’s episode. I’m Carole Ellis. This is episode 69.

Let’s get it out there in the open, shall we? We don’t like to think about dementia. For those of us with Alzheimer’s and senile dementia in our family history, it’s a topic we probably don’t even touch in our silent thoughts most of the time because it’s just too painful. But if you’re working through the experience yourself OR if you’re dealing with the painful transition of a loved one as they undergo the changes that come with various forms of what is usually age-related dementia, then you know that there is a serious DEARTH of assistance out there for people living with this issue. In fact, if you have the early stages of dementia or if you have a loved one in these early stages, very few living options present themselves unless you are willing to go ahead and go into a home or move in with that loved one, two options that most people simply are not prepared for.

So how can a real estate investor help in this arena, and help his or her business in the process? Well, as more and more Americans say that they wish to age in place, regardless of physical or mental capacity and ability, it is becoming more and more important to be able to offer properties that either are equipped for aging in place or that offer optional upgrades, additions, and renovations to enable the homeowner to do so. Particularly when it comes to dementia, those upgrades far exceed the traditional handrails or even electric chairs that might help a homeowner climb stairs, but new “smart” appliances and other smart electronic options can help homeowners and would-be homeowners live on their own even for DECADES after an initial diagnosis if their health also permits.

If you are interested in investing in this type of real estate, you’ll definitely want to explore some of these new, groundbreaking options. For starters, you’ll want to select appliances that are dementia-friendly, meaning that they are designed to maximize user safety, even to the point of having stove knobs on the side of the stove or along the front rather than at the back in order to avoid potential injury from reaching over a hot surface. While this is a safety issue for anyone, the perceptual issues that may come with dementia and that many people do not know about can also make it harder to avoid simple injuries that most of us circumnavigate without much consideration.

Next, consider the welfare of the disabled homeowner’s caretakers. Various apps and smart appliances and devices will help them determine if and when the homeowner leaves, how often the fridge is opened and what is inside (many people with dementia forget to eat long before their other symptoms become a problem) and the temperature in the home. Furthermore, rooms should be designed with clear purposes (kitchen for cooking and eating, living room for visiting television, bedroom for sleeping) rather than with the easy, flowing environment common and popular in many open-design homes. These visual clues will help a homeowner who has an unsettling tendency to forget what they came into a room for recall their initial purpose, say experts.

Finally, design with dementia in mind. This means avoid overstimulation of the senses, since they can become elevated and hypersensitive as dementia progresses. Physicians say that bland, neutral colors are important, but stronger, darker colors as accents can provide some variation without creating too much “business” in the space.

Of course, simply designing a safe, smart, somewhat décor-muted home is just the start. Investors who want to cater to a growing community of homeowners who either have dementia or have concerns about aging in place need the right marketing and the right geographic area for their business to thrive. Check out our report, “How to Market to the Aging-In-Place Crowd” in the REI Today Vault at www.rei.today/vault, or, if you’re not yet a member, text REITODAY no spaces no periods to 33444 and I’ll immediately send you the information you need to get that access and ALSO provide you with fast, immediate access to all sorts of great trainings, news coverage, interviews, and lot more timely information that will help make your investing safer, faster, and more profitable.

And remember, when you do that, you’ll also be able to GROW YOUR NETWORK by interacting with me and your fellow listeners to REI Today… so stop by to ask questions, make comments and network with other investors across the country. Text REITODAY no spaces no periods to 33444 or head over to www.rei.today/vault right now.

REI Nation, thanks for listening in and always remember this:

Your best investment is your own education.

May 25

TOP 3 reasons OWNERS SELL | Episode 68

By Carole Ellis | REI Today Podcast

Wouldn’t you like the know the MAIN HOT BUTTONS that cause homeowners to become motivated sellers? I’ve got that information (and how to use it) in today’s episode. I’m Carole Ellis. This is Episode 68.

So, wouldn’t you like to know what types of things to look for that are most likely to turn a happy homeowner into a motivated seller, fast? Well, fortunately for you, there is a handy dandy survey going around wherein homeowners flat out tell you exactly what motivates them to move! Realtor.com researchers conducted the survey, and you may be surprised at the top reasons that people finally start to want to sell. I’ll tell you all about it in just a moment, but first I have to give you an interesting update on the sale of a marquis Trump property that just might be nearer in the future than most of us imagined. This past weekend, Donald Trump suggested on Fox and Friends Weekend that he would RATHER sell a building than jump in bed with the Republican “elite” donor class. “They want to have control over me,” he said, adding that he doesn’t want people telling him what to do because they donated money to his campaign. Now, you’ve been hearing a lot about Trump lately (and let’s face it, he’s a huge force not just in politics, but also in real estate, so his actions affect us, and you’re going to hear more), but if you want the political aspects of today’s real estate news on a regular, weekly basis regardless of whether or not the guy has done something headline-snatching in the past five days, then you’re going to want to sign up for REI Today’s Trump Tracker. Join up and get all the latest on Trump’s high jinks, headline grabs, and Hilary bashing and, most importantly, what it means for YOU as a real estate investor and an American citizen by signing up for the Trump Tracker right now at www.rei.today/trumptracker (one word). This is NOT political propaganda or a Trump rallying newsletter. It’s what he’s doing, the truth about what he’s saying, and why it should matter to YOUR investing business and how it affects your bottom line. Period. Stay informed on the race that has more to do with real estate investors and their success than any other presidential race in history with REI Today’s Trump Tracker at www.rei.today/trumptracker. You’ll know more than anyone else following the race, and you’ll be the first to be warned if things are about to get seriously hairy (hahahaha).

Now, back to what makes happy homeowners into motivated sellers (and this isn’t your typical “Oh, their house burned down or they died or got divorced list” by the way, this stuff is universally applicable). According to realtor.com’s latest study, nearly half of homeowners move for the simple reason that they don’t like the neighborhood anymore. Households where the head of household is between 35 and 44 or older than 65 are particularly motivated by this need because they tend to be in stages of transition. 65 and older are often retiring, while 35-44 are often growing their families. A great way to target these homeowners is to appeal directly to the cause of the desire to move – often safety, better school systems, or general walkability even – and provide them with a good buying alternative and a beneficial way out of their home (perhaps they’ll be open to creative financing with you, for example, or even taking a big price cut because you’ve got a property that fits their needs).

The second most common reason that owners turn into sellers is that they need different features in their homes, and this is often a particular issue for older homeowners looking at retirement. They often also have more equity in their properties and may be willing to make a deal with you if you can help them pull out some of that equity and also move fast.

The third most common reason (one in five homeowners cite this) that people move is simple: they want or need more room. That’s great news for investors, because the inventory at the lower end of the market is what’s in big, big demand in most areas of the country. Furthermore, realtor.com’s chief economist Jonathan Smoke noted thnat there are several things that actually are PREVENTING motivated sellers (seriously, the guys that will take discounted offers on their properties, folks) from actually making the move to list their homes, and that is truly exciting for an investor who knows how to attract those potential sellers’ attention (by appealing to what is making them want to move) and then is able to remove those stumbling blocks. Get all the details on THIS exciting angle by reviewing the show notes for today’s episode in REI Today Vault at www.rei.today/vault. Not yet a member? No worries! text REITODAY no spaces no periods to 33444 and I’ll immediately send you the information you need to get that access and ALSO provide you with fast, immediate access to all sorts of great trainings, news coverage, interviews, and lot more timely information that will help make your investing safer, faster, and more profitable.

And remember, when you do that, you’ll also be able to GROW YOUR NETWORK by interacting with me and your fellow listeners to REI Today… so stop by to ask questions, make comments and network with other investors across the country. Text REITODAY no spaces no periods to 33444 or head over to www.rei.today/vault right now.

REI Nation, thanks for listening in and always remember this:

Your best investment is your own education.

May 24

3 ways to add AT LEAST $2,500 to your home value for less than $1K in the kitchen | Episode 67

By Carole Ellis | REI Today Podcast

Would you like to know three MINOR CHANGES to your kitchen that could add at least $2,500 to your home value (in some cases) and in some cases, far more, that you can make for less than $1,000? I’m Carole Ellis. I’ve got all the details on these cheap and easy changes that can mean faster sales for higher profits today, in episode 67.

So wouldn’t you like to do a quick few hours of work and pull in an extra few THOUSAND DOLLARS on your home sales price? Of course you would! And I’ve got the details on exactly where you should be putting that very minimal sweat equity of yours in today’s episode. However, before we get to that, I want to talk about another kind of equity, the kind made out of cold, hard dollars and cents. In certain cities around the country, home values are spiraling upward so fast that some analysts are starting to whisper that nasty word (bubble) when they talk about them. However, in particular locales, there are factors that make a bubble highly unlikely but that make appreciation (and equity in the short term) highly LIKELY. Check out our list of the 3 fastest growing cities in the country in our News & Networking Section at www.rei.today and find out if your favorite market is ripe for lots more dollars and cents on your home value or whether you might be heading for a bust. You’ll be surprised at what you learn.

Now, back to your sweat equity and instant home value growth over a weekend (in most cases, of course)! According to the National Association of Realtors (but we’re all friends, here, so we’ll call it the NAR moving forward), a full kitchen remodel can easily cost $20,000 or more and take weeks if not months to complete. However, there are several far less time-consuming and far less expensive options that can still net you some significant gain on your home value. Here are my three favorites, and I selected them for great ROI (on an average home the ROI should raise the value either by a couple thousand dollars or EXPONENTIALLY based on the small amount of work) and low time and resources costs, meaning you can probably bang these out yourself. Here they are, along with the metrics that show just what you can accomplish.

For starters, you could put in a FARMHOUSE SINK. That’s one of those big, sunken, usually porcelain or stainless steel sinks that often has two sides and a big arching faucet. Would you believe that one of these babies, which costs about $230 to have installed professionally and another $600 (at the top end) to purchase, can result in your snagging nearly 10 percent more on your home price AND SELLING almost two months faster than other comparable homes? That’s pretty big savings and “earnings” for a snazzy place to wash your dishes and less than $1,000 outlay.

Next, you might consider installing a nice tile backsplash behind that sink. Counting installation and materials, you can come in way under the $1,000 marker, with homeadvisor.com estimating that you can install a 30-square-foot ceramic tile backsplash for about $812, a stone backsplash for $870, and a glass mosaic one for just under $900. Backsplashes are an easy way to add pizazz to a kitchen without re-doing the entire thing, and a glass kitchen backsplash COULD net you as much as 60 percent ROI when you resell. Some analysts predict that number will continue to rise because glass backsplashes make rooms appear larger and brighter, are easy to clean, are mildew- and stain-resistant, and are considered by most buyers to be “green” (environmentally friendly) materials because they can be made out of recycled glass.

Finally, (you knew this was coming) PAINT THAT KITCHEN! According to Homegain.com, you’ll earn a 250 percent return on investment when you sport some freshly-painted interior walls in your kitchen. For most kitchens, painting the entire thing is the work of a weekend, and a nice, neutral, light color is a great way to attract potential buyers anyway.

So now that you’re all jazzed up about these easy and relatively cheap kitchen investments, allow me to take a moment to remind you that this program does NOT promise results. You need to analyze the comparable properties in your market in order to determine if you think that your ROI will be worthwhile for these or any upgrades. Furthermore, hey, I don’t know if you can paint! I guarantee if I come to your house and do any of these upgrades on my own, in person, without professional assistance, your ROI is anything BUT guaranteed. So just because a survey or an article or a PODCAST says something is easy to do yourself does not mean you should just write off what you know about yourself and dive in without the right research and preparation.

Now, if you want a complete list of the eight kitchen upgrades that cost less than $1,000 that the NAR recommends, I’ve got them all lined up for you in the REI Today Vault so head on over to www.rei.today/vault and browse to your home-upgrading heart’s content. Not yet a member? I’ve got you covered. text REITODAY no spaces no periods to 33444 and I’ll immediately send you the information you need to get that access and ALSO provide you with fast, immediate access to all sorts of great trainings, news coverage, interviews, and lot more timely information that will help make your investing safer, faster, and more profitable.

And remember, when you do that, you’ll also be able to GROW YOUR NETWORK by interacting with me and your fellow listeners to REI Today… so stop by to ask questions, make comments and network with other investors across the country. Text REITODAY no spaces no periods to 33444 or head over to www.rei.today/vault right now.

REI Nation, thanks for listening in and always remember this:

Your best investment is your own education.