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Resources I Use in My Real Estate Investing Business To Get Deals – Part Two

Sooooo I didn’t mean to wait almost two months to complete the list of resources I use in my business. Things have been hectic with the new renovation project. We’re dealing with the historical neighborhood association and Landmarks Commission to get our renovation plans approved. It hasn’t been easy and the final approval meeting got delayed a month. The new meeting is this coming Thursday, so wish me luck! I’m so ready to get this project started. More on that after Thursday’s meeting.

Here is the remainder of my list:

CallRail

I’ve been using CallRail for tracking numbers since the beginning. If I were just starting out today marketing to motivated sellers, I’d probably just use a free Google Voice number (never ever ever use your personal phone number for marketing!!!). But if you can spare $75+ a month, CallRail is a great option.

If you’re wondering why you might need more than one phone number, I’ll tell you. Creating different virtual phone numbers in CallRail allows you to track the efficacy of your marketing. For example, let’s say you want to know how well your Facebook ad campaigns are doing compared to your direct mail campaigns. You would use a different phone number on your FB ads than your direct mail pieces. That way, you can keep track of how many incoming leads you get from your FB ads versus your direct mail campaign.

You can even use them to split test your ads or mail pieces to see which design/wording/etc produces the best results.

Carrot

Carrot is by far the best option for a website to attract motivated seller leads. It also lends credibility to your business if you have a professional website. Carrot sites come pre-built, but I would strongly advise you to customize your site. Change up the order of the sections, rewrite the wording, change the photos, etc. Otherwise your site will look exactly like thousands of other investors’ sites and it will hurt your credibility and Google ranking. Check out my Carrot site for inspiration (But don’t copy me! That would hurt us both!)

Podio

I’ve been using Podio as my CRM (Customer Relationship Manager) since I started out. It was very popular with investors at the time. I’ve got mine fully customized for my business so I like it a lot. I know a lot of investors these days are using different CRMs, such as Notion, so Podio probably isn’t going to be everyone’s cup of tea. So I won’t argue it’s the best. But it works great for me!

Yellow Letter HQ

This is what I use for the majority of my direct mail. They have tons of cheap options and it’s very customizable. I like to use postcards, since they’re cheaper than letters.

Rentometer PRO

I love this tool! It’s fantastic for calculating potential rents for a property. The pro version allows you to see actual rent comps the same way you would see sales comps. This is much more accurate than using something like Zillow’s “Rent Zestimate.” It isn’t cheap, though, so I would recommend using their free version (I think it only allows you to do a limited number of free searches) as well as the Rent Zestimate if you’re just starting out and don’t have much of a marketing budget yet.

Zapier

Once you’ve got your basic tools and systems set up, it’s time to automate and buy back your time! Cause freedom is the whole reason we’re entrepreneurs, right? Well then you need to make Zapier your friend. It’s a tool that causes certain actions to trigger other actions. I know that sounds confusing. But here’s an example: When someone fills out the “Get a Cash Offer” form on my website, I have Zapier set to automatically add the lead to my Podio AND it automatically sends the lead an email asking them when a good time would be for me to give them a call about their property. This saves me time inputting the information into Podio and drafting an email. PLUS they get the email instantly instead of their being a lag time between the time they fill out the form and the time I get around to emailing them.

E-Signature

You absolutely MUST use some sort of e-signing platform so that you can get contracts signed quickly and efficiently. You don’t want to have to rely on an elderly seller to print, sign, and scan a contract back to you. If you pick the right platform, even non-tech savvy people should be able to sign your contracts.

I used DotLoop for a long time. It allows you to use it for free for quite awhile before having to pay a monthly fee somewhere around $30. I absolutely loved it. I found it to be the simplest for those non-tech savvy sellers to figure out. I’ve heard, however, that Zillow owns it and uses sales data from the contracts and other forms uploaded to the platform. If that’s true, it’s not cool!

Once I became a licensed Realtor, I got access to Authentisign for free (I probably pay for it through some other licensing fees…I doubt it’s really free). It’s pretty simple to use so I cancelled my DotLoop account.

If you have access to Authentisign, I would use that. But if not, I think I would recommend HelloSign over DotLoop. I believe HelloSign is free and I’ve heard several other experienced investors say that’s what they use. No reason to pay for a service when you can get it for free, as long as the quality is good. I’ve received documents to sign through HelloSign and never had any trouble.

Closing Thoughts…

When choosing which tools you want to use in your business, keeping your overhead down is KEY. There are tons of useful products out there, but do you really need ten that all cost $99 a month? Do you even have time to make use of them fully and get your money’s worth? I highly recommend taking advantage of free trials and free versions of products in order to determine which ones you really use and are worth paying for. KEEP YOUR COSTS LOW! And keep things simple and streamlined whenever possible. The more products you bring into your business, the more difficult it will be to train future VA’s and employees to use them.

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