Your Land Business Should Be Booming Right Now (LA 1192)

Your Land Business Should Be Booming Right Now (LA 1192)

Transcript:

Steven Butala:
Steve en Jill here.

Jill DeWit:
Hello.

Steven Butala:
Welcome to the Land Academy Show, entertaining land investment talk. I’m Steven Jack Butala.

Jill DeWit:
And I’m Jill DeWitt, broadcasting from sunny Southern California.

Steven Butala:
Today Jill and I talk about, your land business should be booming right now. How do we know? Because ours is.

Jill DeWit:
Yeah.

Steven Butala:
And everybody we talked to that’s in our group on the Thursday webinars and the advanced group chat on our phones and stuff, it’s just-

Jill DeWit:
[crosstalk 00:00:27].

Steven Butala:
… everybody’s doing a lot of deals. So it’s strange because the world’s all negative.

Jill DeWit:
Oh, I know.

Steven Butala:
But there’s so much positive stuff going on in the land business.

Jill DeWit:
I know, people don’t realize people have money. And they’ve been waiting for this.

Steven Butala:
Right.

Jill DeWit:
That’s the reality. There’s a lot of people that have been sitting there, quietly waiting for this, knowing it was coming, kind of like us.

Steven Butala:
Yep. Before we get into it, let’s take a question posted by one of our members on the landinvestors.com online community. It’s free.

Jill DeWit:
This is the name … That’s their-

Steven Butala:
This is her name.

Jill DeWit:
Okay. I think this is very cute, someone’s using it as a dating app. So let me back up, Land Investors is our professional online community as Steven just pointed out, and this person’s name on their profile is Cupid Gave Up On Me. So it’s half dating app now, half land.

Steven Butala:
My first response to that username is, I feel a little sorry.

Jill DeWit:
Yeah.

Steven Butala:
And then my question is, why.

Jill DeWit:
Right. And they know it. And then they’re like, it’s obvious that it’s blatant. Cupid has moved on.

Jill DeWit:
Okay. Cupid Gave Up On Me wrote, “In a recent episode podcast, number one, one, two seven, ‘I have $25,000. What should I do?’ Jill explains that you want to avoid starting and stopping. And what you really want is continuous deal flow.”

Jill DeWit:
People do listen to me.

Steven Butala:
I know. I’m shocked about all of that. I’m constantly shocked that anyone listens [crosstalk 00:02:06].

Jill DeWit:
Yeah. It makes me feel really proud, thank you. I’m glad you’re listening. Although I haven’t finished the rest of this, it could go south really fast.

Jill DeWit:
All right. “I only have half a dozen deals under my belt and I still feel really new to the real estate game. I find myself doing the exactly the thing Jill is warning against. It seems that getting ramped up takes all of my focus and energy. Then when the mail hits, all my focus and energy is now directed towards returning phone calls and securing deals.”

Jill DeWit:
“Once I get a property purchased, all of my focus is now directed towards selling it and answering buyer questions. The end result is I start and stop. It seems that each phase requires my complete attention. How do some of you manage your business so that you are able to maintain consistent deal flow? What methods or practices do you employ to make sure you are always feeding the funnel?”

Jill DeWit:
“I’m a one-man show, and I don’t know the first thing about hiring an assistant, and I don’t feel that I’m ready for that added responsibility. I think it would only distract me even further at this point. Is it possible or common for a single individual doing this business to avoid starting and stopping if they’re only doing it part-time?”

Jill DeWit:
Great question. Do you want me to go first?

Steven Butala:
Sure.

Jill DeWit:
Okay. I’d say my best advice to you is to keep a mail … If you have a consistent, direct mail schedule, you will be forced, forced to keep it flowing. You’ll have no choice, because you never know who’s going to be calling. You’ll be constantly answering the phone as your company, could be a buyer, it could be a seller. You don’t know who it is at that moment. Because you’re not, like you just said, “I’m doing this first. And I’m into this phase. Now I’m into the next phase. Now I’m in the next phase.” Repeat.

Jill DeWit:
And you’ve done six deals, so I love this. You already know the whole process start to finish. Now you just got to push yourself. And so that’s my best advice. And I love that you don’t want to hire anybody. You don’t need to hire anybody right now, that’s totally fine. A few more deals, a few … The more you get into this and you have this process going and you force yourself to just, “Right. I’m not going to stop. I’m going to figure this out.” You’ll ice out where an assistant would best fit at this point.

Jill DeWit:
It’s probably going to be something even as simple as PATLive, or somebody else answering the phone and just taking that off your plate, so you can just really be looking at the deals as they come in and then doing the acquisitions, getting the property posted, getting your mail going. That’s my advice, but what do you want add?

Steven Butala:
Well, this week we’re going to talk about the business ownership side of buying and selling land and houses. Whether it’s the land call or the house call. And all the things that make us successful, you can put them into two buckets, their responsibilities and stuff.

Steven Butala:
There’s things that require a lot of time and organization. And in the very beginning, that stuff is really intensive. It’s time intensive and organization intensive. And let’s say, you have to be really diligent and [inaudible 00:05:32] about time management and self-motivation. Getting something in the mail requires a lot of that. Once it’s in the mail, you don’t have a lot of choices anymore, because the phone’s going to start to ring, the deals are going to pour in.

Steven Butala:
And so, if you’re the kind of person that’s like, “Man, I really need my trainer to show up at my house because I just don’t have enough self-discipline,” then just, all you got to do is get a bunch of stuff in the mail and it’ll correct it. Because you have no choice. The trainer’s going to show up, you’re not going to ever call the trainer and say, “I can’t do this today.” You never want to do that. And it’s the same thing when you get the mail out.

Jill DeWit:
Yeah, you could do it.

Steven Butala:
When you get the mail out-

Jill DeWit:
But we don’t want you to.

Steven Butala:
… and those people are calling back and they’re saying, “Hell yeah, I want to sell my property. Thank you so much for calling. I do want to sell you my property for $40,000 less than it’s worth. You called at the right time. I need some dough.” You don’t say no to that. Now you’re in it. And so you’ve got to separate those two things.

Jill DeWit:
I was going to say, one way to make this easier, like Steven just said, we’re both on the same page. Get that mail going and you’ll have no choice. And one of the easiest ways, if you’re short on time or energy or both, then I would evaluate 10 thousand. I would sit down and tell me what you think this is nuts, here’s my idea.

Jill DeWit:
Sit down and plan out the next 10 weeks of mailers at one time. That’s what I would do, make it easy on yourself. And then you know you’ve got 3000 units are going to go out on this day. 3000 units are going to go out on this day, and this day and this day, instead of having to keep doing things.

Steven Butala:
So I ever see-

Jill DeWit:
And you can tweak them as you need to, because you might tweak the first unit. Don’t maybe have it all the way to offers to owners yet, you could still adjust a little bit.

Steven Butala:
Jill’s exactly right. There’s a million ways to become incredibly organized very, very quickly and put systems in place. If you’re so sick of cooking dinner and figuring out what you’re going to eat-

Jill DeWit:
Like me.

Steven Butala:
… make Wednesday spaghetti night, and then you’re done. You already know what you’re going to eat, and it’s over. And Thursday’s chicken, I don’t know, whatever comes … So there’s a million ways you can do that. I should teach a class about this.

Jill DeWit:
This is kind of good, I like this analogy.

Steven Butala:
I’ve always a secretly … Jill and I secretly have these things that we want to do. Jill wants to motivate people, she wants to write a book and give a talk and talk about motivation. I call it dragging yourself up by your bootstraps, she calls it something else.

Steven Butala:
But I’m very, very organized to the point where, even I pat myself on the back sometimes, I’m done at 11 o’clock sometimes with stuff. And what do I do? Buy another company or start another company, and then make everybody’s life terrible in my life.

Jill DeWit:
Exactly. This is a true, true story.

Steven Butala:
So staying organized with this stuff is just second nature.

Jill DeWit:
Hey, we should start something else. Well, this is a good idea.

Steven Butala:
So Cupid, I get it. But what really happens with offers to owners on mailers, and Jill doesn’t know this because I actually oversee O2O, is that people will send out a 25,000 unit mailer and ask us to break it up in four months. And so that’s what we do.

Jill DeWit:
Four weeks? Four weeks-

Steven Butala:
No, four months sometimes.

Jill DeWit:
Four months? Okay. I thought we stopped doing that because it was time-consuming.

Steven Butala:
We do. We didn’t. Because it’s hard to say no to a 25,000 unit order.

Jill DeWit:
Okay. Never mind.

Steven Butala:
So it’s very common, the vast majority of the people in our group are a one-man show.

Jill DeWit:
That’s true.

Steven Butala:
You know what we did recently that really just dramatically improved our whole operation from a land sale standpoint, is involve local real estate agents who are land specific people. And Jill goes and sits on the beach sometimes, which I haven’t seen in an incredible amount of time.

Jill DeWit:
Mm-hmm (affirmative). Yippee-ki-yay.

Steven Butala:
So there’s a lot of things you can do to make this a lot easier on herself. I will say, you’re in the beginning of your career so you’re going to be busy. Number one. Number two, you can’t get emotional about this. Just your username’s a little bit emotional.

Jill DeWit:
I love it.

Steven Butala:
You can’t, there’s no room for emotion in any of this. It’s all just, “Yes, I’ll buy it. No, I won’t.”

Jill DeWit:
It doesn’t sound emotional [crosstalk 00:09:43].

Steven Butala:
Okay. Today’s topic. Your land business should be booming right now, this is the meat of the show. We can’t keep inventory right now.

Jill DeWit:
[crosstalk 00:00:09:55].

Steven Butala:
And we’re getting notes like this from people in the advanced land group. “We just sold 58 properties this month.” Or, “I got 68 contracts back this weekend in the mail.”

Jill DeWit:
Or excuse me, 200 or what was it, a hundred and … North of a 150, one of our people got back.

Steven Butala:
So why is this? Why would a recession create a booming environment for real estate? Everything you hear on the news is, “Oh my God, it’s terrible out there. People are foreclosing on their property. Real estate agents are having to live in their garbage can,” which is maybe where they’re supposed to live.

Jill DeWit:
What the heck.

Steven Butala:
And all this negative stuff. And so, yeah.

Jill DeWit:
Nobody’s paying rent.

Steven Butala:
Yeah.

Jill DeWit:
No one’s paying their bills. Yeah.

Steven Butala:
In this case, in this recession, let’s pour gas on it by 68 people died today. There’s death now, too.

Steven Butala:
So here’s the thing. When there’s any type of dramatic or any type of drama in a market, or fluctuation, let’s call it. That’s good, markets that fluctuate lots are great. Markets that just sit there and do nothing and just kind of go up every tiny little bit … For the last 10 years, real estate has gone uptick, uptick, every single month. Seasonally adjusted, it’s gone up. It’s very slowly and predictably up.

Jill DeWit:
Right.

Steven Butala:
And we all knew some tragedy was going to happen. The bubble was going to burst, just like it did in 2007. We all knew it. I thought it was going to happen sooner than now.

Jill DeWit:
Right.

Steven Butala:
For whatever reason that this pandemic caused this. So when this happens, people need money. Okay. Well, it turns out we have a bunch of money to give you for this land that was a luxury before. Luxury items are the first thing to go, or stuff that’s not necessary let’s call it.

Jill DeWit:
Right.

Steven Butala:
And it’s not necessary at all to own a piece of land in a different state or wherever. So yeah, it’s booming. The flip side of that is, “Oh great, Steve. Okay. So acquisitions are easy. I get it.” What about sales? Why would anybody, if it’s so bad out there and no one has any money, why would anybody buy a piece of real estate?

Jill DeWit:
I’m happy to help them, but you want to just keep on going?

Steven Butala:
No, just interrupt me.

Jill DeWit:
Okay.

Steven Butala:
So interrupt me, anytime.

Jill DeWit:
Okay. Because I do have stuff to say about this too. I am getting so many … Like Steven just said, people are coming out of the woodwork. I really just had a 2007 call. She told me the date on it it was 2007, that I took yesterday. Not kidding. “Hey, I just found your letter.” They saved it, they save these letters. People don’t believe it, but they save these letters this long, it’s comical. And they’re calling back. So not only are we getting a good response from our current mailers, but way old stuff. So that’s why I’m got double the acquisition volume that I normally have at this time.

Jill DeWit:
And then the second thing on the sales part, we just sold a piece of property to … I didn’t, like he just said, I’m tapping into the broker thing and it’s working out great. And especially because, I’ll tell you, if you find a real land specific broker, you need to talk to them, have a great conversation with them. Be prepared, the good ones charge 10%, but they’re worth it. And they’ll sell your property in weeks they’ll tell you honestly what’s happening in the area. They’ll go drive by, look at properties before you buy it, before you pull the trigger.

Jill DeWit:
And they’re reporting to me that before I went into this, a certain area, they already reported to me. My volume’s triple right now, I’m like, “Are you kidding me?” He’s like, “No.” He just proved it to me. I just sold the property in two weeks to a couple who drove, probably I’m going to say, over 10 hours from where they live south, to this dreamy area, because they were done with the city that they live in. They came from Illinois.

Steven Butala:
You can just say Chicago.

Jill DeWit:
Yeah. They came from Chicago, down to our dreamy area in the south and said, “We’re over it.” I don’t even know if they have family there or not. I know way too much, this broker and I are [inaudible 00:13:56] know each other. They’re young and cute and pregnant and stuff.

Steven Butala:
Oh, really?

Jill DeWit:
Oh yeah, yeah.

Steven Butala:
Do you know?

Jill DeWit:
They’re young and they’re pregnant. And they bought this 15 acre property and they can’t wait to build their dream house.

Steven Butala:
Wow.

Jill DeWit:
They’ve picked out where they’re going to put a pond. They’re going to put it in their own pond. So those people, so don’t discount that they don’t have the money. There’s all kinds of … Like you just said, there’s so many weird situations happening right now, that it’s great. And what am I doing? I am queuing up better, cheaper property for them. I’m buying them for a better price, selling them for still a great price to me, And it’s a killer price to them.

Steven Butala:
And the real estate environment that we’re in right now, it’s very easy to track demand. Because these websites like redfin.com or Zillow or Trulia or realtor.com, can track real time clicks. They can see what people are viewing. They can see if they check it to put it on their list, of their saved list. They can see all kinds of activity, like in a dashboard, like you can see on the stock market where it’s moving.

Steven Butala:
And the clicks on rural vacant land and rural property in general, last month, this is not even this month, we’re up 45%. Everybody wants to get out of the city. The story that Jill just described is not just us, it’s everybody. And it’s not just land, it’s houses too. So this is the time. This is a perfect storm, this is better than a regular recession. This virus thing is driving people out of cities. It turns out, we’re in the rural vacant land business.

Jill DeWit:
Exactly. Everything that we thought about office space is now upside down.

Steven Butala:
Yeah. Office space is done.

Jill DeWit:
It’s crazy.

Steven Butala:
Office space will not recover from this, in my opinion.

Jill DeWit:
No, I don’t think so. There’s not going to be … How are they going to make it?

Steven Butala:
I don’t know.

Jill DeWit:
Because even if you go back to the office, I got to have six feet for all my people and I have to do all these extra cleaning steps. We have to have staggered shifts, we got to just … I’d rather have everybody at home working like normal and showing up on a call.

Steven Butala:
Yeah.

Jill DeWit:
Which is kind of what we’re doing. This is awesome, it’s the perfect storm.

Steven Butala:
Your stuff should be booming right now. If it’s not, I can almost guarantee it’s because you’re not out there reaching the right people. Jill’s version of that right now on the south side is getting the right brokers in place for some of this higher priced land that has state … I call it state road access land, property that where if somebody can drive into a car, drive right up to it and say, “Oh, I’m going to put the pond over there.”

Jill DeWit:
Yeah.

Steven Butala:
So it’s not just that type of property, that’s any property.

Jill DeWit:
Exactly.

Steven Butala:
Any rural property is going to get clicked on. If you’re not booming, it’s because there’s nothing to click on. You own it in your head. That’s what I like to say.

Jill DeWit:
You own it in your head.

Steven Butala:
And I’m guilty of this, oh [crosstalk 00:16:38].

Jill DeWit:
Oh, we’ve done that.

Steven Butala:
We’ve got this acquisition done.

Jill DeWit:
Oh yeah. And then you kind of forget about it. You’re hilarious.

Steven Butala:
Then you realize, “Oh my God. The deal was great. I need [crosstalk 00:16:44].” I got a high off of it. Jill put the needle in her arm. We all got the acquisition high. And then it sits there for a week, I’m like, “Did you list it?” “No. Did you list it?”

Jill DeWit:
“No, I don’t know.” That’s true. That’s so true. Once you get into this and your inventory gets … It doesn’t take long, you inventory gets unmanageable and you’re like, you got to really stay on top of it. And there’s times that you’re like, “Yeah, the high was buying it. Who cares about selling it?” We haven’t said that in a while, because we all know how it’s going to go.

Steven Butala:
Yeah.

Jill DeWit:
Happy you could join us today. Every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, we are right here on the Land Academy Show. Tuesdays and Thursdays, we are next door on the House Academy Show.

Steven Butala:
Tomorrow the episode on the House Academy Show is called, your job is not enough anymore.

Steven Butala:
You are not alone in your real estate ambition. How many times do you walk up to the stove and touch it and it’s hot and then do it again? Not twice. So I remember my first recession, and that’s when I said, “I will never have a single point of income like this ever again, like a J-O-B.” And so if this is your first recession, you get a pass, because sometimes you have to go through stuff. Anyway, we’ll talk about it tomorrow.

Jill DeWit:
Yeah. And now you’re putting together your contingency plan, as you should.

Steven Butala:
That’s right.

Jill DeWit:
If you didn’t have it already, you need one now and we’ll tell you ours. The Land Academy show remains commercial free for you, our loyal listeners. So where you are watching, wherever you are 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.

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