33% of Our Members Quit Day Jobs to Invest Full Time (1033)
Steven Butala: Steve and Jill here.
Jill DeWit: Hi.
Steven Butala: Welcome to the Land Academy Show, entertaining land investment talk. I’m Steven Jack Butala.
Jill DeWit: And Jill Dewit, broadcasting from sunny southern California.
Steven Butala: Today, Jill and I talk about our current flip tool line up. Years and years and years in the making and it all comes down to this. We have developed, just through the nature and the course of improving our own land flipping business, all these tools. When we started Land Academy everybody said, “Well, can’t we use that tool to do it?” Through over the years, since 2015, Jill and I have web enabled our tools for everyone to use in the group and that their response has been fantastic. So Jill will get into in a second.
Jill DeWit: It’s going to be good. Some of them, we are licensed providers and I’ll share that. And some of them that we flat out created because they didn’t exist, and we needed them.
Steven Butala: There’s a lot. We charge, in my opinion, a very small subscription fee to access all these tools that we’ve been developing. I’ve been developing since the 90s and how to use them, with the education on how to use them.
Jill DeWit: And it’s not cheap.
Steven Butala: It’s worth spending an episode on. Let’s put it that way.
Jill DeWit: Exactly.
Steven Butala: Yeah. Before we get into it though, let’s take a question posted by one of our members on the landinvestors.com online community. It’s free, and before we get into Jill, I’m going to tell you it’s lengthy.
Jill DeWit: I took a deep breath and then he goes, “Before you start.” Ah, okay.
Steven Butala: If we had any formal in front of the camera or radio audio training, none of this would happen.
Jill DeWit: Thanks. Okay. Can I go now?
Steven Butala: Yeah.
Jill DeWit: Okay. David says, “Hey, all I’m a terms guy that loves selling property on terms. I’ve been putting my foot into the water for larger properties. However, my comfort is with the stuff that’s less than $15,000 and I’ve had a lot of success there and I want to continue to scale that income. I’ve had a ton of success on Facebook, buy and sell marketplace and continue to market there. I have VAs, virtual assistants, hired to help with that. Had plenty of success on lands.com, Land Century, et cetera, and I have Vas to help with that. I’m trying to continue to scale up and each of these places has a limit to them, but in reaching times the number of potential buyers or the number of posts you can make without getting your accounts slapped, your hand slapped or doing paid traffic. So trying to figure out how to continue to scale up. I think Craigslist could be the answer.
Jill DeWit: On the other hand, where I’ve had the largest amount of frustration has been on Craigslist. There’s so many moving parts and I know that other people have had massive success there. I’ve even talked to some land specific… taken some land specific courses on Craigslist to try and better master it. I that we’ve made some progress, but I’m still not satisfied with my stick rate. Probably around 60 to 70% and I get a few responses that are mostly tire kickers with a buyer that comes in every few months. The people who are crushing it seem to get an 85 to 90% stick rate and are selling properties left and right using Craigslist.”
Steven Butala: A stick rate is, I post a piece of property on Craigslist and it doesn’t get taken down, 85 to 95% or 90% of the time.
Jill DeWit: Exactly.
Steven Butala: So that’s very, very hard to manage on Craigslist. For some reason, it gets flagged and people say stuff, so.
Jill DeWit: Or it looks like it’s a duplicate copy and paste. They want to make sure that it’s a unique posting in those areas.
Steven Butala: Yeah, it takes a lot of time to manage.
Jill DeWit: It does. “I’m trying to hone in on the problem. I’m trying to hone in on what the problem is that I’m having. Is that the posting method, the ad writing, the pictures and the phone numbers that we’re using, the pricing? I’m going to lay it all out here. So here is an example of a few ads. Example ad number one, headline, “Escape to your new land and don’t tell your friends.” In the body, “Own your own parcel of land today. We specialize in connecting people with their dream land. We have a large selection of vacant land parcels in the near cities. These parcels can be owned today for as little as $158 per month. Enjoy gorgeous views and fresh air on your own parcel of land.” I like his descriptions.
Steven Butala: So do I.
Jill DeWit: “Contact us today.” Example ad number two, headline, “Calling people with motors. Bring your ATVs and ride.” In the body, “This is a perfect place to spend your day speeding through the deserts and join your ATVs and dirt bikes. This remote areas full of wildlife and just waiting to be explored. So spend your time out here having adventures that you’ve always dreamed of. This 2.5 acre lot is in the Sprague Valley, acre subdivision and priced to move at only $8,000 cash or $249 down and $149 a month, if you’d like to finance.” So here’s my current formula for posting. Number one, one IP to two emails reset after the mobile hotspot. Reset the mobile hotspot afterwards. Two, one account to one craigslist market. Three, one pick to one posting that we’re using the exact… This is very detailed. I’m not sure everybody’s kind of getting this right now.
Steven Butala: I’m getting it. I’m getting a lot out of this. Maybe it’s just for me.
Jill DeWit: Just making sure. Number three, one picture to one posting. I understand these. You have to get detailed like this. I didn’t get to read number three, but that’s okay.
Steven Butala: Oh, sorry.
Jill DeWit: One pic to one posting per reason, the same exact picture. Not using the same exact picture. Number four… What’s PVA?
Steven Butala: You know what? We can skip this because I’ll tell you what-
Jill DeWit: Okay, we’re getting real detailed and it’s all-
Steven Butala: And it’s all on Land Investors, yeah. If you look up Craigslist on Land Investors, whether you remember or not, it’s going to pop right up.
Jill DeWit: Okay. I’m going to keep on going down through here.
Steven Butala: You don’t have to.
Jill DeWit: Scenic body, zip code-
Steven Butala: He’s got a lot of formulas to keep his stick right, acceptable.
Jill DeWit: I see one problem right here. We’re spending a whole lot of time in that one thing and it’s not that it’s bad. However, I want you to do some other things too. Not just social media, not just Craigslist. Get it out there. Is it on LandPin? Is it on your website? Is it in Instagram? Is it in all areas of social media? Are you using Broker Direct MLS on some of these properties? If it’s a 10, $15,000 property, it should be on the MLS. I love your focusing on one, but I want you to cast even a wider net.
Steven Butala: Yeah, I mean, I think that how you’re approaching this Craigslist stick rate and posting success rate by using formulas to see which one’s best, that’s the very definition of split testing and I think it’s great. You should try them all. I didn’t see, or at least when we posted this, by now, I’m sure there’s some responses. But I can tell you, you’re absolutely on the right track. And Jill’s right, you have to try it in other places.
Jill DeWit: Get it everywhere.
Steven Butala: Most recently, nothing has worked the best that I’ve heard as Facebook.
Jill DeWit: Heck, even put it on… put one of your properties on Ebay. That’s going to drive some traffic. It really is true. We have a good list of 10 to 15 places online that you should be posting and I’d get them out there. Get them out there first and if you want to circle back around and spend more time on each one and I hope that’s where you are on the process. How about this? I’m assuming you’ve got it out there on every place that we’ve all talked about. Now you’re circling back around on Craigslist going, “How can I do Craigslist better?” That I get.
Steven Butala: I’ve also heard people who sell a lot of stuff on Craigslist, not just land, get somebody involved who’s a Craigslist expert. There’s all kinds of podcasts out there about how to make Craigslist really work. There’s these newer, or new to me anyway, sites like Offer Up, that I’ve heard a lot of people selling property on that don’t have the stick rate problem that Craigslist does. This stick rate problem is unique to Craigslist and in my opinion, it’s because the ease of flagging-
Jill DeWit: Copying and pasting.
Steven Butala: … flagging up postings is… It’s too easy for people to flag postings to say, “This is bad,” or whatever. So that’s what Jill said. Today’s topic, our current flip tool line up. This is the meat of the show.
Jill DeWit: So I divided them up. It’s kind of like on our website. There’s tools that we have for acquisitions, there’s tools that we have for engineering and there’s tools that we have for sales.
Steven Butala: Oh good. I like it.
Jill DeWit: Thank you.
Steven Butala: Excellent.
Jill DeWit: Then we have a few admin ones too. You sound surprised.
Steven Butala: Well, I think it’s great when you take notes before the shows. Some shows are mine. Like earlier this week, we talked about tax things and tax deeds. But these flip and these websites that we’ve developed are kind of both of ours. When you get all organized and intelligent about it, I think it’s great.
Jill DeWit: Yeah and it came out of a need from not only our members in our community but us as well. So I’m going to kind of run down the different tools, tell you a little bit about them and you can ask me questions. How’s that?
Steven Butala: Perfect.
Jill DeWit: If you want or jump in. All right. So first of all, what do you need to really be successful on the acquisition side, the buy side? Well number one, you’ve got to have the data.
Steven Butala: You have to have access to a database, not a list. You need access to it.
Jill DeWit: Right and we shopped for years, we struggled for years, went to the county. We tried it all and we had one source and we still have one phenomenal resource that we use to this day. We are direct licensed providers of it and it’s Corelogic’s RealQuest Pro. In some areas, it’s a direct feed from the county and some it’s down to the fact that they just have aggregators that sit in the office once a month, not kidding, go out to the local counties and then with a laptop and a stack of papers and are inputting the data.
Jill DeWit: So it’s the freshest. It’s always delivered in the same format, no matter what the county is. Which is one of the reasons we love it for land. It’s also one of the only places, and I think still to this day, that we can get an assessed, or excuse me, an improved percentage of zero. So when you can be able to go and pull data and see improved percentage of zero, you know you’re dealing with a piece of land. There’s nothing on it.
Steven Butala: There’s not housed on it.
Jill DeWit: Exactly.
Steven Butala: It’s a very effective way to separate houses and land.
Jill DeWit: Exactly. So I’m going to move on. Next tool is offers to owners. When you’re doing your acquisitions and you’ve got the state, you got to get the mail out.
Steven Butala: Get the offers out, yeah.
Jill DeWit: Office to owners and that’s cheap mail with mail merge done for you. No set up fees and again, cheap mail. We had to create this one on our own and that’s our company.
Steven Butala: We created it, like every single tool that she’s about to describe, out of frustration for the fact that we either couldn’t find what we needed or it just-
Jill DeWit: The ones we made.
Steven Butala: … it was just to sophomoric.
Jill DeWit: They didn’t get us.
Steven Butala: It was too 101. Yeah or it was made for cars and not land or houses and not land.
Jill DeWit: That’s how I walk around saying, “For investors by investors.” We did it for what we need. Deed perfect, another one. You need to make a deed. You’re buying a property, whether you’re buying or selling it, you got to do a deed and it takes a little time sometimes.
Jill DeWit: Gosh, wouldn’t it be great. I can just put in the legal description and the grand tour and the grantee and have a deed spit out. Yep. We made it. Deed perfect. So it’s there. Then also, on the acquisition side, some our members are getting started and they just want to find some cheap land and beef up their inventory and they’ll find them on our deal board and we have our own deal board for that.
Steven Butala: Oh, deal board. I forgot about deal board.
Jill DeWit: Thank you. So that’s some of the things on the acquisition side. Now on the engineering side, which engineering is really when you get in and you’re trying to decide… You’re doing your due diligence and trying to decide, is it a property I want to buy and get all my questions answered. We have two phenomenal tools that we use for that.
Jill DeWit: One is our own created parcel fact and back in the day, when we were starting out, good luck finding these properties. They didn’t come with an address or GPS coordinates. Even if you found the GPS coordinates, you had a center point, you didn’t have the whole thing. You couldn’t look at it all on a map. So that’s were parcel facts came in.
Steven Butala: Parcel fact’s amazing. If you haven’t checked it out, you should. Parcel fact, fact.com
Jill DeWit: That’s our site. That and then, my other tool that I use. These are all day, every day. Open on my computer is TitlePro 247 and It’s Black Knight Financial Service. They have AgentPro 247. I know a lot of people that have heard of that product, which is a scaled down, easy button version of what they have. Well, that’s not how we roll and I need to get real specific information. I want access to everything about the property, not just what you think I should know. That’s the TitlePro 247 and still to this day, most people, the normal person off the street can’t go get it. They’ll sell you AgentPro but not TitlePro.
Steven Butala: It’s the same thing that title agents use.
Jill DeWit: [crosstalk 00:13:24] Right.
Steven Butala: We’re licensed providers of that too.
Jill DeWit: Yep. So we have that and give that to our people and I use it all the time and I can go back and do my own due diligence. That’s what it’s for. I need to see, not only the most recently recorded deed, which is also called the vesting deed, I need to see the deed before that and the deed before that. So it’s in there.
Steven Butala: The chain of title.
Jill DeWit: Mm-hmm (affirmative) and then finally, now let’s get to the sales part of it. So, we have two sources that we created. One is LandPin and the other is the LandTank. Do you want to talk about those?
Steven Butala: LandPin is our version of LandWatch or Land and Farm or I think it’s land.com now. Some of the co-star products and it really helps our newer people get their posting straight, so that they can syndicate it out to other places. So it’s a great place. It’s another feather in your hat on places to sell property.
Jill DeWit: It’s great because unlike those other sites, you hook up your own social media accounts and you can share it right out of LandPin.
Steven Butala: Share away right out of LandPin. I mean, that’s-
Jill DeWit: It saves so much time and energy.
Steven Butala: … huge to share it with Facebook groups and everything. Yeah.
Jill DeWit: Exactly. Do you want to talk about LandTank.
Steven Butala: LandTank is Shark Tank for land. You have a property, you think it’s a great deal. There’s a lot of people in our group that are just sitting there in front of their computer waiting for people to post really good deals that need money partners. LandTank matches money people with people who find deals in our group. I think, is it just for our group?
Jill DeWit: It could be a sales thing or it could be an… Yeah, only members can… Other people can see the deal, but they can’t access the deal.
Steven Butala: Here’s an example. You just sent a bunch of mail out. You got a bunch of mail back. You have a property, 40 acre property in let’s say, Texas, New Mexico or somewhere that you’re going to buy for $5,000, let’s say. You don’t have the $5,000 or you’re not willing to spend it yet. You put it up on LandTank and a money person swoops in, might be us actually and says, “I’m happy to fund this whole deal for you. I want you to do all the work and put all the sweat equity in, but I’m happy to pay and we’ll split the profit when we’re all done.” That’s what LandTank is and it’s extremely profitable. Jill and I have another show called House Academy and we’re developing and just about to release, well the next 60 days or so, HouseTank, where you can do the same thing.
Jill DeWit: Exactly and then we have a few… I have a few that I wanted… Just, they’re worth talking about. They’re kind of admin related. One, this was a big deal for us, to conquer the whole credit card processing environment.
Steven Butala: You did your homework on this.
Jill DeWit: I did.
Steven Butala: It’s impressive, Jill.
Jill DeWit: When we first started-
Steven Butala: I can’t keep this stuff straight.
Jill DeWit: … and many of us too, all of our, like the Seth Williams and other people too, we all had the same problems. We were like, “We only got so far with PayPal.” They caught up with us and said, “No land and kicked us out.” And then, MoonClerk, no land an kicked us out. One by one, Stripe, no land and kicked us out. So no one wanted to take on our property type. Even other people, for collecting rents and things like that, were having trouble. They didn’t want to deal with property.
Jill DeWit: So, it took us a year to get this relationship and if you go on landinvestors.com, you could find a credit card processing link there. It’s open to the public. We have solved it and we have a credit card processor that works just with us, understands our property type and you won’t get kicked off. It’s so great because you can have that easy button on your own website and some of them just checkout with a credit card. Pay For their property and you wake up in the morning going, “Well, I guess I’ve got to do a deed today.” How great is that?
Steven Butala: Our land sales website is LandStay, S-T-A-Y and it’s all… If you need an example of it, just go there and check it out. Click on something. Don’t buy it if you don’t want to, obviously. But click on it-
Jill DeWit: If you want to.
Steven Butala: … see how it works. It’s truly amazing.
Jill DeWit: Exactly and then my last little note is, we’ve, done little things along the way too, that if we can’t create it and make it fantastic or… we’re at least going to make sure it’s provided at a great rate. So, phone answering has been a thing for people. So we have a great rate with a company called PATLive.
Steven Butala: We had a choice. We could create a site called Jill Live, or we could negotiate a fantastic deal with an already existing professional call center that’s made for real estate people called PATLive.
Jill DeWit: And they know us.
Steven Butala: We chose to align ourselves with PATLive, instead of recreating the whole thing.
Jill DeWit: Exactly.
Steven Butala: For a pretty substantial discount, 20% off.
Jill DeWit: Exactly. It’s huge. It’s great. That’s my lineup.
Steven Butala: We have on in the hopper called Title Nine. There’s two separate times in the past where Jill and I released Title Nine and got so overwhelmed because we’re so understaffed that we had to turn it off. So we’re doing it the right way now with some partners and who are experienced title people, escrow people. We will be releasing it probably within the next 60 to 90 days, conservatively, probably sooner than that. It’s our own escrow company. It’s our own escrow title company. You can submit your deals, we’ll close them for you and get a deed.
Jill DeWit: Again, for investors by investors. We know what you need.
Steven Butala: Yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah.
Jill DeWit: That’s the whole point here.
Steven Butala: [crosstalk 00:18:29] I mean, I’ve yet to see a title agent who really understands land. I mean, and this is now… I’m almost 30 years in this business. They understand houses. So, we’re here to conquer that too.
Jill DeWit: Yep. Every deal we do is going to be with our special hold open or binder rate because we know what you’re doing.
Steven Butala: That’s right. You’re doing the same thing we are.
Jill DeWit: Exactly.
Steven Butala: Hey, we know your time’s valuable. Thanks for spending it with us today. Join us next time for an episode called 33% of our members quit their day jobs.
Jill DeWit: To invest full-time.
Steven Butala: Oh.
Jill DeWit: Sorry and we answer your questions posted on our online community at landinvestors.com. It is free.
Steven Butala: You are not alone in your real estate ambition. That was a long episode.
Jill DeWit: I love how you read the… You write the titles.
Steven Butala: We left a bunch out.
Jill DeWit: I know. Well, you know what, that question took too long. Well, not too long. The question was long, in the beginning, so that’s what was going on.
Jill DeWit: Wherever you’re watching, wherever you’re listening, please subscribe and rate us there. We are Steve and Jill.
Steven Butala: We are Steve and Jill. Information-
Jill DeWit: And inspiration…
Steven Butala: To buy undervalued property.
If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to email me directly at steven@BuWit.com.
The BuWit Family of Companies include:
I would like to think it’s entertaining and informative and in the end profitable.
And finally, don’t forget to subscribe to the show on Apple Podcasts.