Shocked with Lack of Response! - Posted by Jim LaVerdi

Posted by Stacy (AZ) on January 19, 2000 at 17:01:18:


Shocked with Lack of Response! - Posted by Jim LaVerdi

Posted by Jim LaVerdi on January 18, 2000 at 23:38:40:

Dear Readers:

First of all let me say that this site is the best resourse for investors that are new and seasoned alike. However I am completely shocked at the lack of response to a question I posted earlier concerning everyones success and the time spent to acheive it. After reading countless posts of people doing this deal and that deal and flips and lease options, and seller carrybacks, and land trusts, and subject to deals and yada yada yada. I did not, and will never ask of anyones money situation, that is a personal issue.Although I have seen recent posts asking certain individuals for the specific mechanics of certain deals! Anyway all I asked was four simple questions that any investor would, or should be happy to answer. Those Questions were (1) When did you begin your investing?. (2) How long was it before you did your 1st deal?. (3) How many deals have you done? (4) How many hours per week do you put into your investing?. Sounds easy enough to me, but it’s not!. I’ve received responses from “This question has been posted before and received a weak response” to ,“You should’nt compare yourself to others” My friends: These questions were not intended to pry into your personal lives, they were simply asked to get a general idea of how long it took different investors to get started and their progress rate thereafter. Think about it…If you share your success you just may excite a person just getting started by them seeing that you made your first deal in just 6-8 weeks! or even encourage someone off to a slow start by them reading that it may have taken you 1 1/2 years to do your first deal. If you believe this is wrong, then either you or I need to see a doctor soon!

Much to my surprise, you guys will give someone like Arthur D an overwhelming response of over 55+ answers to something that he has NO IDEA of what he is talking about, but yet, when a question such as this is posted, for the encouragement of many others, the overwhelming response is in reverse! If I ever have the opportunity in the future, to answer the same question from a newbie, or
anyone else for that matter, I will be proud to disclose that information for those who wish to know. I know that this would be read by many other newbies here, and I’m sure they are waiting for responses from the experienced, seasoned, successful , investors right now as they read this post! Please, if you would post your record so us newbies can generalize the possibilities of our careers. You’re kind of like our role models.

Thanks for your responses

Jim LaVerdi (Phoenix Arizona Investor)

P.S. Remember to read the first line of this post. I am not picking on anyone. Just expressing my disappointment to the veterans.

Re: Shocked with Lack of Response! - Posted by tb

Posted by tb on January 19, 2000 at 20:31:56:

Okay Jim, not that it matters in the end, but here…

Started in February, 1999.
Did my first deal (through the mail) in September, 1999.
Have done a total of 9 deals (waiting for the Deed on 3 of the 9 currently).
Amount of time per week depends. Sometimes one hour, sometimes 15.

Hope that answers you questions, but I still cant really see what good itll do you or anyone else.


Re: I stand corrected. - Posted by Stacy (AZ)

Posted by Stacy (AZ) on January 19, 2000 at 15:29:33:

Jim, I guess I was wrong; you received several more replies than I’ve seen before when this question was asked. But, I think one difference from the prior attempts is that you didn’t give up. Tenacity is definately a good trait for an investor. Probably a required one. Good going.


Re: Shocked with Lack of Response! - Posted by AL

Posted by AL on January 19, 2000 at 13:53:19:

JIM, I hope I can help you with my responce to your question1.I started investing JUNE 1993 2.I closed on my first deal in august of 1993 3.I own at this time 81 units (mostly single 4.I spend about 10 to 15 hrs per week on managing what I have and looking for and getting new properties.(this has been my full time gig for two years now) I hope this will help you get rolling in your venture I truly love this!! If you have questions use this board to motivate you I`LL also be happy to help.

Baby Steps - Posted by Carmen_FL

Posted by Carmen_FL on January 19, 2000 at 12:18:46:

I still consider myself a “newbie”. But briefly, and to let others know that it’s OK to take small steps (we don’t all buy 30 houses our first year!):

  1. I still work part time; my husband has been doing REI full time since March 1999 (got fed up and quit his J.O.B. - big surprise; we were not prepared for this)
  2. We purchased our first property in April 99.
  3. We sold that property in May after a “prehab”, and rehabbed 2 more since. One was sold; the other is pending sale. This doesn’t sound like much, but the profit from these 3 deals will exceed my husband’s ex-salary for the year. Plus, we began the hardest way imaginable - Rehabs! We’re putting down the hammer after this one, and looking for an easier, faster way to profit.
  4. My husband does this full time. The past year, he spent most of his time FIXING the rehabs, rather than FINDING the deals. We’ve since gotten smarter. Now he’s spending most of his time looking for deals - about 4 hours a day. The rest of the time he spends trying to “sell” the deals he finds (flips, etc.), marketing (VERY IMPORTANT), building relationships with other investors, lenders, etc. and educating himself. I pitch in whenever I can. Actual time varies, since we work from home. It seems that we are “tuned-in” 24-hours a day though - there’s always a deal to “spot” as we drive around or read the paper, a call to make, a message to return, a fax to be sent out, postcards to be mailed, etc.

Hope this helps you.

THANKS JIM !!! - Posted by ED ORTIZ

Posted by ED ORTIZ on January 19, 2000 at 12:01:33:

I’ve noticed by the amount of responses that a lot of the other people have asked themselves the same questions(including myself). Last night when i read some of the answers to your post, i too felt that some of the pro’s where kind of “not so helpfull” with there answers and by the response to this last posting it seems that i was not alone. Thanks for posting your very interesting question and for those who don’t feel like answering, well they don’t have to…

Good Luck,

Re: Shocked with Lack of Response! - Posted by Tyler

Posted by Tyler on January 19, 2000 at 11:18:11:

Hi Jim-

It seems to me that you are really just looking for some confirmation that you can make really good money in this business, without working yourself to death.

This may sound very obvious, but have you checked out the Success Stories page? There are DOZENS of success stories, sharing deal profits from 10 to several hundred thousand. These are REAL people! I know, cuz I’m one of them.

About 11 months ago, I left my corporate job to do this full time. I never imagined things would be going as good as they are today.

The deeper you get into the game, the more you realize that deals are everywhere. And I mean EVERYWHERE. Apply the techniques learned here, and the number on your deposit slips will start getting a heck of a lot longer.

Bottom line, this stuff works. I’ll confirm that for you. Now…you want to know how much YOU can make??

That’s all up to you. You could make 5 times as much as me, or you could make half. That’s all up to you and how seriously you play the game.


Didn’t see the Post - Posted by PBoone

Posted by PBoone on January 19, 2000 at 10:42:14:

I didn’t see the post before or I would have gladly answered the question.
Bought first course may 1997
First deal june 1997
I do not know the answer to the how many deals question, but I can directly answer we did at least one deal (closed) per month our first year.
The hours I do not count nor do I know, what I do know is within 8 months of investing I resigned from a $50k per year job to build OUR business.

I’ll bite - Posted by Mark (SDCA)

Posted by Mark (SDCA) on January 19, 2000 at 10:13:37:

First, just let me say that I think in general the response rate on here is pretty good. Sometimes I will see a question which has not been answered and I will jump in if I feel like I know what I am talking about. Likewise, if a question has been answered to death, I will rarely chime in with exactly the same info.

  1. I started in late 1991.
  2. I did my first deal immediately. Perhaps I am not clear what you mean by starting. I just jumped right on in.
  3. I have done 8 deals.
  4. If you include everything related to investing (such as reading and possting on this website), probably 7-10 per week. If you mean just looking for and looking at deals, probably 1/2 that. I tend to go in spurts though.


How easily you were fooled. - Posted by Scott

Posted by Scott on January 19, 2000 at 10:13:27:

Jim, I apologize, but you seem to haev been so looking for the pros to spill their guts, that you were willing to accept any response as being a true answer.
Any one can print anything on this or any other group.
And if you arent careful , youwill believe it as truth.
You dont know the people on this group, we could all be 14 yr old kids for all you know. All a person has to do is spout out a few numbers and sound important enough , and you would believe them. I know you have heard it before, I used to do the same thing when I found this board, but you have to make your own success. What one person did when they got started , may not be available for you now. Guys who started in the 80,s , when foreclosures were rampant , had to come up with different techniques. Todays markets are much different, especially since the internet had opened up more people to the creative techniques. Now , sellers are smarter, and equipped with more info than before. Now you and I have to come up with our own ways to find, and buy houses. Yes , some will give you some great advice, but NO one is going to GIVE you all their tricks. Even the people who sell material , are not necessarliy telling you all their tricks, I know I wouldnt. They paid their dues with a lot of hard work , trial and error, blood and sweat.It doesnt matter what someone else has done, you wont achieve their ranking, you will always be a few steps behind them, always. I have met Jim Piper, Ed Garcia, Karp, and several other down to earth investor"pro,s"
They dont brag , and thats what you are essentailly asking them to do.Go to the convention and then you can ask them in private all the questions you want, and they will freely talk to you. And once you get to know them , you wont ever need to ask those questions again.
Take care.And do something about the itchy ears that need to be scratched by someone elses achievements.

Re: Shocked with Lack of Response! - Posted by NellB (ID)

Posted by NellB (ID) on January 19, 2000 at 09:50:37:

To All Frequenters of this Site:

I, too, am a newbie. Since I have a full time “JOB” and I’m trying to do this on the side, I find myself getting a little discouraged sometimes. For those of you who have already had success it is inspirational to me to learn that if I do indeed persevere (and I believe that is the key to success in anything you choose to do)I will establish myself as a successful REI. Granted, my idea of success will be different from yours, but nevertheless it gives me comfort and inspiration to read your success stories. I appreciate all of you who took the time to answer Jim’s question.
I especially appreciate the response from Dave–I think he realized that Jim wasn’t trying to pry, but was seeking information that would help him succeed. After all–isn’t that what this site is about–helping each other to succeed? Many thanks for the input and inspiration I’ve received from this site.

Re: Shocked with Lack of Response! (long) - Posted by Ray (NJ)

Posted by Ray (NJ) on January 19, 2000 at 09:49:21:


Although, I am not shocked by the lack of response to your inquiry, I, too, like to know some of this information.

It is a shame that some of the more experienced, seasoned investors forgot what is was like when they were just getting started. It’s real easy to say “just do it” when you’ve “done it” dozens of times and have the experience and knowledge under your belt.

I, too am a “newbie”, and have yet to do my first creative deal. I have a minimal real estate background (as an agent years back), and have bought and sold an investment property, it was not creative. As a matter of fact, it was a 20% down duplex with bad tenant problems, and I got burned. Therefore, I am very cautious about getting back into the game.

What many of these investors don’t remember, or fail to understand, is that everyday, we “newbies” read posts on this site, other sites, and stories in the news about small-time investors getting nailed in court for huge fines, or getting stiffed by the IRS because of some obscure law they weren’t aware of, or a minor detail they forgot, etc, etc. And we, not having the experience, nor the cash for a lawyer & accountant to preview every deal and make sure that we’re following proper real estate and tax law, don’t want to end up in the same boat.

Furthermore, even though each individual is different, it is encouraging for us to see other people, like ourselves, become successful. The questions you asked, if answered, kind of give us an ideal to look towards. I don’t find them offensive nor personal (you didn’t ask a single question about money), but informative and encouraging.

For me, at least, I look up to many of the people on this site as role models to learn from and emulate. Somehow, I don’t think they realize that. I am very grateful for the many people on this site who have the patience and understanding to share their experiences with all of us. They are providing, for free, a great service, and a great education. With their successes, they don’t need to spend their free time hand-holding us “newbies”, sharing their experiences and knowledge. They do it because they love the game, they remember what it was like to be a beginner, and they understand the importance of education. They learn, they teach, they share.

Holy crap - I’ve written a novel! Can you tell I’m passionate about this? Thanks to everyone who makes this board educational and motivating.



Re: Shocked with Lack of Response! - Posted by Jim Rayner

Posted by Jim Rayner on January 19, 2000 at 09:20:58:


you can read about my history at this story covers my story up though september 1998. since that time i have acquired 11 more units and i have begun a second restructuring in preparation for the next big deal currently in negotiation. i still work fulltime atleast til this summer but my father and son each put in 40 plus hrs a week with the rehabilitation projects. at last years convention we had positioned ourselves to be able to cash out at that time aprroximately 750K. with the 11 additional units added since then well the number has grown to ? ( come to the convention and find out). as i said in my success story armed with right education and a lot of motivation you can succeed and find your Freedom. Now i’ve got to get back to my deals

Re: Shocked with Lack of Response! - Posted by David

Posted by David on January 19, 2000 at 09:10:51:

I think most of the seasoned investors are missing the point here. If giving Jim some stats on how you are doing and how you got started gives him some motivation, then more power to him ! If you don’t want to give this type of information out, then don’t. But you don’t need to make Jim feel like a loser for asking. He’s searching for some motivation to get off the couch and do something.

I’m fairly new to this Jim, but here ya go…

  1. I started in August 1998
  2. I did my first two deals at the same time in October 1998.
  3. We have bought 30 properties since then ( something like one a month )
  4. I still have a J.O.B., so I only spend about 5 or 6 hours a week on real estate.

Good luck Jim, and I hope to find you becoming an expert and sharing your experience here in a couple of years !

Re: Shocked with Lack of Response! - Posted by Kimberly

Posted by Kimberly on January 19, 2000 at 09:01:45:

Ok, I’m a newbie here. I’ve been on this site maybe a month. I just put in my first offer this morning. I look to this site for advice and the appeal of others doing what I want to do (or what I am doing). How long someone has been investing or how long before their first deal was done is not knowledge that I am going to benefit from.

FEAR is what stops us from moving ahead. I know people who have gathered information for years and never put it to use. Then it becomes useless information that you might be able to use in a trivia game. Everyone wants to make money but if you don’t put in the hard work and get off your butt it will never happen. How many people have bought RE courses and they just sit and collect dust? You might as well sell them on Ebay and give it up. If the passion is not there, it will never happen. My passion is here and I don’t want to blah, blah, blah about it, I just want to do it.

So leave the seasoned investors alone and make it happen.

Re: Shocked with Lack of Response! - Posted by Scott

Posted by Scott on January 19, 2000 at 08:48:09:

Jim , although I really do not think it is a needed thing or any of your business , heres my answer.

  1. I started back in the 90,s ,
  2. It took a month and a half to do my first deal
  3. My company I run averages 10 deals a month to which we average a minimum of 20-30k per deal( some of the best were ones we made in excess of 100k, but that was a big house)
    4)Because I have my business on auto pilot, I only work about 20hrs a week , and I do a lot of deals on the phone without even seeing a property. Thats what I hire good people to do. I trust them.

Now that you have a response , will you turn your attention to achieving what you know you can achieve , but you seem to want to ratonalize why your not succeeding like you thought. When it is time , you will bust loose and take your city by storm.
Take care.

Re: Shocked with Lack of Response! - Posted by sc

Posted by sc on January 19, 2000 at 08:40:07:

Ok Jim, I’ll tell you because I asked the same questions when I started. However, the others are exactly right. I’ve learned it really does not matter what others do. It only matters what you do.

I started learning about REI almost two years ago. I am a strong believer in a good education, so I wanted to have a sound understanding of the process. I attended seminars, joined a local REI club, and read books. It took a while before I could “connect the dots”. In the meantime I had some personal issues that delayed my progress but I did not let anything stop my mission to learn something every day.

This time last year I started looking at properties. I looked at a lot of houses and made a lot of offers. It was frustrating at times but I knew I was on the right track.

In May, I had my first contract with a bank foreclosure. I closed on it and put it out on a lease option within 30 days. At that point I really got fired up. Since then I have bought or taken control of four other properties.

I do this part time now because of my JOB, but that will change later this year. Now, I spend about 10 to 20 hours per week.

Now I have stopped looking for properties and started looking for motivated sellers. (This is a key milestone)

Through this experience I have learned is that REI is not scary anymore. I know its my future and I love it!

Good luck and don’t ever quit.

Re: Shocked with Lack of Response! - Posted by Rob FL

Posted by Rob FL on January 19, 2000 at 08:32:01:

The others are correct in that you need to be making deals and not overanalyzing things. I will try to help you a little with your survey.

  1. 1994
  2. 3 months
  3. Like Stacy says, not enough, but I do a handful every year. Still part-time for now.
  4. It varies depending on many things. Somewhere between 3 and 15 hours. If I was full-time I am sure these numbers would increase.

Transfer your “shock” into passion - Go Do a DEAL !!! - Posted by JohnG

Posted by JohnG on January 19, 2000 at 08:09:38:

Why don’t you put ALL of this energy and time and passion into doing a deal instead of wasting it on something that doesn’t really matter ?

I am serious. If you could stop and ask yourself one question before you spend time on something :
Will this get me closer or farther away from my goal ?

If the answer is Yes, then do it.
If it is no, then stop right now.

The greatest thing I have learned in my real estate career (and my life)is to stop doing the 90% of the things that are just “being busy” and concentrate on the 10% of the things that make deals and make money.

You have managed to get some of the resident pros a little upset at you.It is nothing personal.They just see you wasting time on things that don’t matter and they want you to re-direct that energy.
You have a great deal of energy and passion - try and redirect that gift into making a deal that will make money and get you going. Set a goal to do a deal in the next 29 days. Don’t spend any more time on this other stuff till you make the deal. Go for it.
And by the way, I just sold 34 units (complex) in Dec and I just bought 12 units this month (condo complex) that I will re-sell. I did this while managing two other large complexes and I am trying to buy into a 200 acre parcel of land just outside my city. I am focused on results and the rest of it just is so much fluff.I do more in a half day now than I used to do in a week and it is so much easier than wasting time on the stuff that really doesn’t matter. Do a Deal NOW !
(Man, if you get this - look out - you will set the world on fire. If you don’t get it - you’ll send me back a big long message telling me why you think you are right and I am wrong. What will it be ??? I’m really excited !!!)