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The Sniper Approach

The sniper method is a database-driven approach that allows you to be far more efficient with your time in attacking assets rather than randomly going after assets you think you like, or waiting for deals to be brought to you. I’m not going to lie. This is going to seem easy because it's a short video. But this method takes a tremendous amount of time and effort to initially set up. However, I have found if it's easy everybody would be doing it.

You need to visit every property tax assessor website of the county or counties you want to target, and export every single multifamily complex into an excel spreadsheet. Some tax assessor websites don't have the ability to export their data, so you could call them directly and see if they would be able to provide it to you in an excel spreadsheet. If that doesn't work then you're going to have to resolve to subscribing to and paying for a third-party property database website. There are several that should at least have the basic information you’ll need. The end goal here is to set up the data in the right way so that it can be imported into a CRM (Customer Relationship Management) program. Once you have the data, take the time to set up the headings as necessary, as well as format the data with caps and punctuation, etc. so it imports uniformly. What I want you to focus on is how powerful it is to create a targeted approach of going after targeted assets so you can buy more than everybody else. The way my CRM works allows me to drill down all the properties in my database by class, market, rent type, unit count or bed count, year built, and even narrow down to those that haven’t sold in the last two years. The last transaction date is important because it would be very difficult to buy properties that have traded recently at a reasonable price. My CRM then allows me to export this list so I can analyze it further. One of the things I like to do next is eliminate certain owners, depending on my goal, who I know from just being in the business are not owners who either look at off-market offers versus listing with a broker and exposing it to the market. The easiest way to do that is to sort the owner column alphabetically and delete the appropriate ones. For example, I know in my markets, neither American Campus Communities, the Collier Companies nor the Scion Group are going to do a deal directly with a buyer who calls them out of nowhere. Next, I may create an additional column that is let’s say the dollar per bed closing price and sort them from largest to smallest and decide not to look at properties in the past for more than $60,000 a bed. After that, I may drill down even further and create another column that is the bed to unit ratio and decide not to look at properties that have a bedroom to unit ratio bigger than three, because I like one bedroom and two bedrooms more for this market. In my example, I have taken my original database of over 1,900 properties and narrowed it down to SIX that I could legitimately buy based on that specific criterion.  Another way to narrow down the list is by eliminating those owners who own assets in long-term funds and that fund isn’t due yet to be sold, or owners that own assets that have already been value added if I was hoping to add value to it. I know I used pretty specific criteria in this exercise, but the point is in almost all cases you can dramatically narrow down your database to a very small data set so that you can more effectively and efficiently focus your time on those assets. Now, this approach takes a tremendous amount of upfront effort and it requires a little bit of work every day because you've got to update when properties sell, or sometimes unit numbers change if units are converted from 1 BRs to 2s or vice versa. Using this sniper approach to find more deals is effective, but let me tell you something very, very important that I hope you won't take as some cheap ploy to gain more business for myself. The number one most effective way to find more deals than anyone else in your market is to develop a reputation that compels every broker in the market to bring you all of their listings. Multifamily brokers procure over 90% of all closings over 10 units. If you can become a magnet for every broker's listings, and you master the sniper's approach to finding deals to buy, game over for the competition.


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real estate for beginners, real estate investing for beginners, advanced real estate investing, real estate analytics for investors

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