Having a substantial budget when you’re first starting out is tough. Marketing is a must in this industry but the good thing is that there are strategies that, if you’re will to put in a bit more effort, don’t cost a lot of money.
Door hangers, driving for dollars, and networking are 3 ways to get deals without spending hundreds or thousands of dollars on marketing, but they do take up your time.
Lots of real estate investors have at one point or another, used door hangers as part of their marketing strategy. They’re great because they don’t cost much and can be an effective lead source.
If you haven’t created door hangers yet, they’re easy to make.
Vistaprint has a template for them and they currently offer two different sizes of door hangers. We use the “large” door hangers and upload our own design, but keep it very simple. You don’t want them to be fancy.
In the message on the door hanger, let them know you’re an investor who’s interested in their house and can provide a cash offer for their house in “as-is” condition.
A font that looks handwritten gives it a personal touch, even though they’ll be mass printed.
For the phone number that you include, try to have a dedicated number just for door hangers so that you can see how well they’re converting into deals.
As far as distributing door hangers, always keep some in your car so that if you drive by a property that looks like it fits your criteria, you can place a door hanger on their front door.
If you have some rehab projects going on, you can have your subcontractors place them on houses near the project in no time at all.
As you start getting more deals under your belt, you can actually pay to have someone deliver these mailers to specific neighborhoods or even zip codes if you want.
Driving for Dollars
Driving for dollars goes hand-in-hand with door hangers.
For investors who have the time, you can drive through different neighborhoods and find properties that catch your eye as being a possible investment deal.
Ideally, you’re wanting a property that is distressed and in need of repairs. If you want, you can research the property before knocking on the front door but it isn’t a necessity.
If it looks like someone might be home, you can knock on the door and see if there’s someone you can talk to about making an offer on the property. A door hanger can be left if you think someone might be home at a later time.
For properties that don’t have anyone home, neighbors might be able to share information about the property or the owner. They can sometimes tell you where the owner is and their backstory so you can decide if it’s worth pursuing or not.
Keep in mind that neighbors want their street to be kept up and if you’re a solution to purchasing and fixing up a dilapidated house next door, they might be willing to share what information they know.
REIAs are perfect for meeting other local investors and vendors. You can exchange experiences from past deals with other investors and find out what other investors are doing in their business that’s working.
Depending on exit strategies, you might even be able to find some deals at these meetings.
It’s also important to have have business cards available so that if another investor or vendor wants to reach out to you, that they’re able to. They’re a small investment that can lead to big profits.
Remember, connections are crucial in the real estate investing industry so the more people you know, the better.
You can also join local Facebook groups for real estate investors. You can usually post your deals on there but you might also be able to find a deal.
Share your deals on your personal Facebook page. If you don’t have a deal, let your friends and family know that you’re looking for deals in your market. Having 1-2 deals a year come through because of your Facebook posts will be more than worth the time spent making these posts!
Even with a tight budget, the above strategies can bring you motivated sellers that can lead to closing a few deals. Once you get a few deals under your belt, you’ll have more flexibility in your marketing budget and you’ll be able to try out new marketing strategies.
You can’t build your business overnight. Work with what you have and put the time in that’s needed to get your business off the ground.