4 Land Flipping Business Changes To Capitalize During A 2024 Economic Decline (LA 2003)

4 Land Flipping Business Changes To Capitalize During A 2024 Economic Decline (LA 2003)

LA 2003 WP

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Subscribe to the Land Academy podcast

4 Land Flipping Business Changes To Capitalize During A 2024 Economic Decline (LA 2003)

LA 2003 WP

Never Miss an Episode!

Subscribe to the Land Academy podcast

Join Steven Jack Butala and Jill K DeWit on The Land Academy Show for episode number 2003, where they delve into Four Land Flipping Business Changes essential for thriving in the 2024 Economic Downturn. As experienced real estate professionals, Steven and Jill share invaluable insights and strategies to ensure your success amidst economic challenges. Don’t miss out on this essential guide to navigating the changing real estate landscape!

Transcript:

Steven Jack Butala:
I am Steven Jack Butala.

Jill K DeWit.:
And I’m Jill DeWit, and this is The Land Academy Show.

Steven Jack Butala:
This is episode number 2003. We are calling it Four Land Flipping Business Changes to Capitalize on the 2024 Economic Downturn.

Jill K DeWit.:
That’s a mouthful.

Steven Jack Butala:
Yeah.

Jill K DeWit.:
Can you say that five times fast?

Steven Jack Butala:
Well, here’s the gist. There’s economic downturn. We’re in it and it’s going to affect real estate. It’s already pretty dramatically affecting commercial real estate. And we want to make sure that when you, you’re buying and selling land, capitalize on this and you’re not victim to it. And that’s what the show is really about.

Jill K DeWit.:
We lost a lot of people… Not a lot of people. I shouldn’t say that. We watched some of our friends/competitors back in the day not recover. And that’s what I am watching already start to happen. I’m watching people leave. They’re not getting it. They’re not making adjustments. They’re not ready for it. And since you have done this a couple of times, I’ve done this more than one time with you or one time with you. So, this is really why you’re here. You’re listening to this because we’re not new to this. We’re not brand new. And yes, it’s really our real gray hair.

Steven Jack Butala:
This is my third real estate recession or real recession in my professional life, my fourth in my actual life. And I’ve learned a lot and I love to share it with you because you can avoid a lot of pain.

Jill K DeWit.:
True.

Steven Jack Butala:
So, before we start, you have some news.

Jill K DeWit.:
I do. Well, so here’s the deal-

Steven Jack Butala:
And it’s fascinating to me.

Jill K DeWit.:
All right, so instead of doing a question today, I wanted to take a few minutes and talk about something different. So, I was reading our local little newspaper. And you’re going to love this as I hold this up. You’re like, “What? Jill, why are you holding a piece of paper in your hands? Do you get the paper?” No, I do not. But I have to tell you, I don’t order the paper. I don’t think it’s fufu. I like the paper, but I don’t get the newspaper. But because where we happen to live and because I think the median age in our area is about 80 or 90.

Steven Jack Butala:
Yeah, I think 87.

Jill K DeWit.:
Yeah, 86. There is still a sweet little pretty in-depth local newspaper that we get for free every week in our mailbox. And I read the paper, because again, there’s some good information in there. So, I’m reading this article done by a local resident, and he is in houses, in real estate doing houses. And he got connected with a guy in England and he wrote a neat article with a top performer in England, an agent over there. And he was sharing the differences on how real estate is done in England versus the United States, and I just loved it. And this comes right at a perfect time because we all are all watching and hearing about the NAR and this big fine and, oh my gosh, are they going to take away sellers agents or buyer agents? Are they going to change the commissions? What’s going to happen and how’s this going to go? And I wanted to shed some light on this too because it’s so interesting to me how they do things versus how we do things. And I’m going to argue, I like theirs better.

Steven Jack Butala:
Me too.

Jill K DeWit.:
And let me tell you why. There’s 20 things, I’m not going to read all 20, but I’ll get close to 20 because they’re so interesting. So, number one, the commissions in England… Think about our commissions, 3% and 6%, right? That’s what we’re all used to. Hey, we do land deals.

Steven Jack Butala:
10%.

Jill K DeWit.:
Exactly. I was just going to say, sometimes it’s 10%. So, commissions there are typically 1% to 1.5%. I love it. And it’s payable by the seller to the estate agent who advertises the property. And by the way, the better the agent, of course the higher commission, generally speaking. I think that’s brilliant. I love it. The buyer is usually unrepresented, but there are a few special buying agents. Sometimes there are people who have buying agents, and it’s really only when they’re very rich and they need to find a certain property. Totally understand that. That makes sense. I can’t go out and see it myself. It’s optional if I want to get my own agent-

Steven Jack Butala:
Or I live in Monaco.

Jill K DeWit.:
Yeah, I do my own thing. This is one of the things I love too. Caveat emptor applies here. Sellers in England, unlike here, they’re under no obligation-

Steven Jack Butala:
By the way, we’ll get to this recession thing at some point.

Jill K DeWit.:
We will. To reveal defects in the property. How interesting that most of them are honest, like how we do it, I’m really honest. If I know it, I share it, but there’s no law against that. There’s no title companies, no title insurance. How amazing is that? There’s no MLS. That’s amazing too. That’s a lot of what these fees go for. What pays for MLS, the ads? Real estate fees?

Steven Jack Butala:
No, the National Association of Realtors Estate. It’s all-

Jill K DeWit.:
I had to think about that for a second.

Steven Jack Butala:
It’s their association dues.

Jill K DeWit.:
They pay for all the MLS?

Steven Jack Butala:
Yeah.

Jill K DeWit.:
Okay. Yeah, parties can back out at anytime until they exchange the actual contracts, which are really usually done about a week before they close. I thought that was really interesting. Prices change… Both the buyer and the seller come to the table with their own attorneys to close a deal. Remember, because there’s no title agents and no escrow agents, they do it all. And each one has their own solicitor. They represent each person individually, and I love it. Of course, each solicitor has a fiduciary’s responsibility and duty to each individual client. I think that’s the greatest thing. It’s really interesting when you think about how we do deals here where you might have one agent who is representing the seller and then also representing a buyer. How can they have a duty to each one? They can’t. It’s really not possible.
So, this is a huge one for me. Estate agents in England have no required education and are not licensed. Anyone can wake up and decide they’re estate agent just by calling themselves one. I think that’s awesome. No formal contracts required. Often, these offers are made by phone calls. This is a huge one for us because we do deals so flipping fast. Deals over there typically take three to five months, and a lot of things fall apart because of that in that time. And they find out things and they get out of it. Like, yep, I get it. They have no fixed-rate mortgages for more than five years. Most of their mortgages are variable rates, which is really wild. So, they might have a fixed-rate for a short period of five years, that’s it. Remember, we have 30 year fixed? That’s not a thing over there. There’s no government guarantees on these loans and nothing like FHA, VA, Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac. Down payments are high, they usually pay 10% to 25%. So, that’s kind of it. But I just thought that was so-

Steven Jack Butala:
My take away from this whole thing is that you have a lot more choices as a buyer and a seller of real estate in England than you do here. And I have to ask myself in general in life, when are less choices better? We always want more choices and more freedom.

Jill K DeWit.:
Of course.

Steven Jack Butala:
This whole country was founded on that. For whatever reason, over the years, probably since the 1950s, the National Association of Realtors realized, correctly, that there’s a lot of money in real estate and they want a piece of it. And the contracts have grown to a point now where you’re interested in buying a piece of real estate and you start signing your names to things. The more signatures you sign, the more pieces of paper you sign, the further down that tunnel you go into making a commitment to buy it regardless of the outcome. And I can’t think of another business where that happens.

Jill K DeWit.:
Isn’t that awful? I changed my mind. What do you mean?

Steven Jack Butala:
[inaudible 00:08:18].

Jill K DeWit.:
It’s like I picked up something in the store and I put it back down, “Mm-mm. It’s yours.”

Steven Jack Butala:
Yeah, you touched it.

Jill K DeWit.:
Yeah. What the heck? I changed my mind.

Steven Jack Butala:
I can’t think of another business where that’s appropriate, and so-

Jill K DeWit.:
I agree.

Steven Jack Butala:
Now, what we’re seeing if you’re up on the news is some landmark rulings from the Supreme Court saying, “We’re going to undo this.”

Jill K DeWit.:
Yeah, you’re right.

Steven Jack Butala:
“We’re going to start down the path of undoing this because people need to be individually represented, buyers and sellers and real estate agents make too much money.”

Jill K DeWit.:
Well, it’s just not fair that I have to do all this stuff. I don’t want to. So, I could go on and on.

Steven Jack Butala:
So, the name of the show today is Four Land Flipping Business Changes To Capitalize on the 2024 Economic Downturn. We want to share with you today, Jill and I, our pretty in-depth experience being experts at buying and selling land for, geez, 30 years now, how we have dealt with and what I think you should do to deal with the economic downturn that’s actually here now and probably going to affect real estate more probably for the next three years.
Here’s the good news. Your business, this business model that Jill and I have put together over the last 10 years, really 30 years, is all set up to thrive in a downturn market anyway. Our regular business model during the good or bad times is buy a piece of property, a piece of land for 20% of its retail value, 20% to 25%, and sell it between 40% to 50% of its retail value. So, that’s the goal. You got $100,000 piece of property, the person just doesn’t want it anymore. You send a ton of offers out, you buy it for 20,000, 25,000 bucks, sell it for 50,000 to 60,000. And the person that buys it from you walks away shaking their head about how great of a deal it was. And so, it’s a garage sale model.You’re buying a piece of property or you’re buying a bunch of stuff that’s way undervalued, just out of convenience for the seller. And it happens very consistently. Jill and I do a ton of deals, and so do the Land Academy. Our Land Academy members do also. So, you’re set up for this. That’s the good news.
I can tell you this from experience that all recessions have one thing in common, they all end. And as a younger person, the second recession around 2009, I was convinced it was just over. And I hear younger people in our group and our children actually say, “Well, I guess we missed it. The market’s gone. The properties, they all rose in value and-“

Jill K DeWit.:
I can never afford to buy a house.

Steven Jack Butala:
“I couldn’t do it, so it’s over.” And that’s just not the case. This is all going to happen again. Interest rates are going to go back down. A lot of people will drop out of the market because of these recessions. These recessions are cleansing, so to speak.

Jill K DeWit.:
That’s good.

Steven Jack Butala:
And they’re cleansing for people that are set up to stick around and weather the storm. So, they will end. This will end. The key is what do you do while it’s happening to capitalize on it, which is what the show is about.
So, very quickly, here’s the four points on how to survive this thing and then Jill and I will go into detail on it. Number one, batten down the hatches to weather the storm. So, I’m going to tell you what’s going to happen here within reason or in general and what we do to change our life and our businesses, so that we can manage this, we can weather the storm, and ultimately, thrive during it. Number two, you need to change the type of land that you buy and what you’re willing to pay. We’ll cover that. Number three is the message you are delivering to potential buyers.
It’s not just about location and quality right now. You have to really seriously deliver a message that my loss is your gain, even though that’s not the case. And then number four, and perhaps the most important in my opinion is you need to have somebody in your corner, professionally or personally, like I have Jill-

Jill K DeWit.:
Very sweet.

Steven Jack Butala:
… that is standing shoulder-to-shoulder through this thing and you’re not banging heads with that person because it’s going to get tough. You’re on the bow of a boat during a storm. That’s no time to argue with the person that’s trying to hold on for life, just like you are.

Jill K DeWit.:
Tack.

Steven Jack Butala:
Yeah, tack. Here’s what’s happening. Why is this recession happening? Why do recessions happen? Well, all kinds of stuff is going on. Inflation went nuts. If you haven’t been to the grocery store lately, inflation went nuts. Inflation in general in my opinion-

Jill K DeWit.:
Eggs.

Steven Jack Butala:
… happens because governments print a ton of money to hedge off inflation, and then it catches up. So, that’s what happened. The last two administrations printed a ton of money, and it made the value of the dollar less. And so, other stuff now increased in value because that purchasing power of that same dollar is less. That’s my summary of what happens, inflation. That happened. We’re in an election year and I don’t care which side you’re on.

Jill K DeWit.:
That’s always fun.

Steven Jack Butala:
Nobody likes it. Nobody likes to get all involved in that and the polarization of it and all. That’s not good for business, period.

Jill K DeWit.:
It’s not fun.

Steven Jack Butala:
Very specifically, and this is unique to this recession and imperative in my opinion, we had a long, long stretch of 3% mortgage rates, three-ish percent mortgage rates. Many people bought real estate and they bought it because of COVID. COVID just threw this incredible demand for real estate that was coupled with 3% mortgages, so people were buying second homes, buying land when they can finance it, moving because they didn’t have to go to work anymore. So, there’s a strange perfect storm of three or four things that happened. So-

Jill K DeWit.:
This is good.

Steven Jack Butala:
… a lot of lenders were leery of, and rightfully so, doing 15-year and 30-year fixed mortgages. So, instead, they did three and five-year adjustable-rate mortgages, which simply means your interest rate on your mortgage is three or five years. At the end of that period, it becomes a variable rate mortgage and then it will adjust to, she just alluded to this in England, adjust to the actual rate. So, you have a 3% mortgage for three years and now it’s 7% or 6% or whatever the terms of the agreement are. So, here’s the math on that. On a $300,000 mortgage, every month you’re paying at 3%, $750 of your payment goes to interest. When your mortgage moves from 3% to 6%, that $1,700 becomes $1,500. So, in the simplest terms, your payment might be $1,200 in the beginning because you’ve got insurance in there and real estate taxes, PMI, PITI. Principal interest, taxes, insurance. So, that $1,200 payment, that interest portion of that’s going to double, so $1,200 becomes $1,900.
That’s a lot to chew. So, you’re going along in life and you’re paying $1,200 one month because people don’t read their mortgages. They don’t know this stuff’s going to happen. Nobody gets a phone call and says, “Your mortgage is going up.” It happens that month. Your salary didn’t change, your life didn’t change at all. In fact, during these down times, you’re wondering if your job’s secure anyway. So, that’s enough to push a lot of people over to say, “You know what? I’m going to sell,” or, “We’re going to go move back into our parents’ house,” or whatever ends up happening. In those life events, which we preach at Land Academy, life events trigger people to choose to sell their real estate. And so, huge life events are going to happen for the next 24 to 36 months. This is one of the big ones. And so, that’s why this recession is happening. It’s causing people to choose to sell. Interest rates are real high, which are not making new buyers real excited about buying property. All of this turmoil spells thriving for us.

Jill K DeWit.:
We were also looking today, we did our weekly member call. We were looking at some statistics about how sellers, they are accepting less money probably on their home sales too, to account for these interest rates. That’s kind of a bummer too.

Steven Jack Butala:
Banks have been through this too. The last thing a bank wants to do, strangely enough, is take back a house for lack of payment.

Jill K DeWit.:
Yeah, I’m going to sell my house up-

Steven Jack Butala:
They’re not set up for it. They want to-

Jill K DeWit.:
Because you imagine they can’t qualify at this, so I rock it to this so they can qualify, and with their interest rates, now they can afford to live there. And that was the only way I could sell my house. You know that’s happening

Steven Jack Butala:
Now, we know why we’re here in general, why recessions in general happen. It’s four or five things that all happened at once. Plus, we just had, geez, 14 years of amazing thriving economy. It’s the longest that I’ve ever experienced and I don’t know what the stats are in that, but it’s huge. It’s usually not that long. To survive an economic change like this, cash management is the absolute whole key to winning. This is in your personal life and in your professional life.
And a little anecdote. I walked into a class during undergrad, this is a million years ago, a finance class, and on the board when they had chalkboards and when they had classes, on the board, this sentence was written, “Cash kills companies,” three words. I never forgot it. Obviously, I’m talking about it now. Cash kills everything. Lack of cash is a real huge problem. And then, lack of access to cash causes even bigger problems. So, you have to take a look at what your current cash position is. And that leads me to number one. You need to batten down the hatches to weather this storm. This is the first of four landflipping business changes to capitalize on this economic downturn. So, before we get into the real estate part of it, let’s talk about you and your life and your company.
Take a look at how much cash you have in the bank, and then take a look at what your equity position is in all of your assets. If you were like us and during this last recession, we had a lot of land. We had a lot of paid-for land that we paid for. We didn’t have any debt associated with it, and Jill and I were lucky enough to have a paid-for townhouse that we lived in. And it wasn’t our primary residence. The primary residence we had to end up short selling because of lack of cash flow, but we were lucky we had a place to live that was paid for and actually ended up being a lot of fun.

Jill K DeWit.:
Yeah, we still have it.

Steven Jack Butala:
I look back on those times-

Jill K DeWit.:
We love it.

Steven Jack Butala:
I look back on those times and I think those are some of the happiest times ever.

Jill K DeWit.:
I know. Exactly.

Steven Jack Butala:
So, take a look at how much cash you have and tighten your belt on, how much money, where you’re spending it. Not everybody is as fortunate to be in a situation where you can just move yourself around or move jobs and all of that. But look at your cash position and look at the equity you have in land or in any type of real estate that’s free and clear, so you can sell it for it maybe less than you paid if you have to. We’re in a world now where if you find a real estate deal, a good real estate deal, we have… In Land Academy, people just packed in the Land Academy that are ready to fund your deal. We didn’t have access to capital back then like that. We were forced to sell assets for not what we wanted to sell them.

Jill K DeWit.:
Well, it wasn’t even so much that… It wasn’t a hit. It was more like, “Hey, I bought it for 25. I thought I’d sell it for 80. Now I’m selling it for 60. Big deal. Maybe even 50.”

Steven Jack Butala:
Or 40.

Jill K DeWit.:
Or 40. What if it went really crazy? It was still fine. That’s how we roll. That’s the whole point. That’s how we roll.

Steven Jack Butala:
And finally, review your debt position. We were very fortunate. All the debt that we had, and it wasn’t a lot, it was directly tied to assets that we underpaid for. And then, in a couple of cases, we had to renegotiate with the lender to deal with that. On one specific was an office building that Jill had nothing to do with. I would’ve never done that deal if she was around, but we got out of it okay. And then, you need to review for a single point of failure. And I hate to say this, I don’t like to say this out loud, but a W-2 job is a single point of failure. And so recessions are when-

Jill K DeWit.:
That’s true.

Steven Jack Butala:
… I learn the most about the stuff that I’m screwing up in a really good way, and it’s a hard lesson to learn. But you need to have multiple streams of income and you need to really manage your cash position and your equity and debt position. Hopefully, there’s no debt. The perfect scenario is you have a ton of assets, they generate a bunch of money, you have no debt at all, and you’re standing next to somebody like Jill who everybody’s patting themselves on the back saying, “Wow, we finally learned something from the last time.” If this is your first recession and you’re getting pounded, please don’t beat yourself up over it. Learn. It’s going to happen again 12 years from now. We’re going to come out of this. There’s a bunch of real estate you can buy, which we’re going to talk about in a second. Just learn from it. Don’t look in the mirror and call yourself an idiot because you’re not. There’s no class at any level of education called surviving a downturn that I’m aware of.

Jill K DeWit.:
There should be.

Steven Jack Butala:
There really should be.

Jill K DeWit.:
Yeah.

Steven Jack Butala:
Batten the hatches down because you can weather this. That’s number one. Number two, I’m sorry, do you have anything to add?

Jill K DeWit.:
No, no. This is a Jack show, and I’m actually having fun over here. This is nice. Thank you.

Steven Jack Butala:
There’s probably another newspaper you can read during this.

Jill K DeWit.:
Yeah. Maybe I will. I’m just drinking my juice. I got other things to do. I didn’t bring my nail polish, but I’ll do that next time. You’re good.

Steven Jack Butala:
So, number two, change the type of land you buy and what you’re willing to pay. And this is for number two and three, I want you to put yourself in the shoes of people who buy assets during a recession. What do you think the profile’s of somebody who’s scrounging around to buy undervalued stock, undervalued dirt?

Jill K DeWit.:
Pick me. Pick me. They’re loaded and they have a lot of cash.

Steven Jack Butala:
And they’re not smart. They have the perception, not the reality, the perception that there are amazing bargains to be had during a recession.

Jill K DeWit.:
Sometimes there are.

Steven Jack Butala:
Yeah, but they’re not on the MLS in general. So, you need to change the type of land that you buy and what you’re willing to pay based on who you’re going to sell it to. So, we love rural vacant land here. We love out-of-the-way properties that are really, really, really cheap that we can buy 50 acres, 40 acres for 20,000, 30,000, 40,000 bucks and sell for 80,000. I don’t want you to focus on those types of properties right now. They’re not easily resellable during a recession. What I want you to focus on are properties that are urban and really valuable properties that are maybe commercial properties that maybe are zoned agricultural right now, but during the next uptick, might be a developer’s dream.
And look at what that buyer’s perception is of the dirt that you have. I’m not saying stop your rural vacant land effort. If you want to buy those and you just love it and that’s your specialization, that’s great. It’s one of our specializations. You just got to buy them way cheaper than 20% of retail. If you’re deep into the Land Academy scenario, you’re staring at 10 properties that are rural vacant land and you were ready to buy them, just call the seller back and say, “It needs to be cheaper.” We do that all the time.

Jill K DeWit.:
There’s nothing wrong with that. Things changed. I thought I could pull it off, but I can’t. This is what I can pay now. If it works, great. If it doesn’t, I understand. It works for me so often.

Steven Jack Butala:
How many times you gone to a, I don’t know, garage sale or looked on Facebook Marketplace, and you’ve seen a posting of something that… You have this thought and then you execute on it. “I will never be able to buy,” fill in the blank, “like this ever again. This is an amazing opportunity. It’s probably 20% or 30% or 40% of what I would actually pay during a regular time, and I’ve always wanted it.” That’s what you want someone to say about your real estate listing. It needs to be-

Jill K DeWit.:
That’s good.

Steven Jack Butala:
… “Holy heck, I got to buy this right now.” So, whatever type of land that translates to where you’re buying and selling land, adjust what you’re willing to pay. So, that the outcome is when you go to sell it, that person’s thinking that. By the way, this applies to a classic car, a boat, all kinds of stuff like the nuttos that have a bunch of money that have always wanted a yacht.

Jill K DeWit.:
Oh, am I a nutto? You’re pointing to me like I’m one of the nuttos.

Steven Jack Butala:
No, you described what kind of person buys this stuff. It’s a nutto that wanted to buy a yacht and can buy it now for half the price.

Jill K DeWit.:
Exactly.

Steven Jack Butala:
Number three, change the message you’re delivering to potential buyers. And I alluded to this in the previous one. My loss is your gain. Jill and I have had a lot of success having that be the title of a land posting. My loss is your gain 40 acres for $60,000. Two years ago, this would’ve been 320 grand. Huge success rate on things like that in working with the real estate agents that list our stuff. My loss is your gain. We are in liquidation mode. Now, is the time to sell on price. Every financial class I’ve ever had about building a business or an entrepreneurial classes, people who sell on price get in a price war scenario, like grocery stores do, never win. And that’s true, except in a recession like this where price just matters so much, both on the buy side and the sell side, and be loud about it. Now’s not the time to be coy. You need to jump up and down in your real estate listing or wherever you’re selling property and say, “Here’s the message. I’m going to lose money on this,” and you’re not. You just bought it cheaper.

Jill K DeWit.:
Which is what we do, but now we’re even doing it even better. That’s normally what we do. Like look, we talk about this… I’m not here to reset the market now. I’m really not here to reset the market. You want your buyers to be jumping up and down for this great deal, and that’s what you’re going to tell them. It’s our same narrative, but we’re just more vocal about it right now is the big thing. We all know this is worth way more than I’m selling it for.

Steven Jack Butala:
Jill and I used to teach a college-level entrepreneurial class. And one of the things that I taught specifically is nothing lasts forever. There’s ups and downs in everything. And this can be an up or down for you depending on how you deal with it and how you’re managing everything. When things go sideways, they always do, in every relationship and every financial scenario that you’re involved in, stuff always goes sideways. And the first thing that you need to do is get back to grassroots. Whatever your business is about, buy a piece of property for cheap, sell it for more. That is our most grassroots scenario. “Oh, that’s great, Jack. How do you do that?” So Jill and I have spent 10 years explaining that.
One of the things that has to happen or will happen and is happening in an environment like this is it’s hard to sell land. Your buyer pool is a lot smaller. You got to go out there and get your customers just like the old days.

Jill K DeWit.:
This is good.

Steven Jack Butala:
And extreme examples of that are, jeez, it doesn’t happen anymore. But when we were kids, you could get a summer job selling encyclopedias by knocking on people’s doors. That whole cliche about going down a block and knocking on people’s doors because the wife is at home and the husband’s at work. We’re not that young. And selling vacuum cleaners, you could do well if you could sell. I’m not saying do that, and I can’t stand that kind of sales and I don’t condone that then or and I don’t condone it now. But the people who are going to buy your real estate, especially if it’s priced correctly, already own real estate in the immediate area. And they need to be directly contacted by you. Maybe you text them. We really advocate sending neighbor letters. Every time you buy a piece of property, send a letter that says, “My loss is your gain.”

Jill K DeWit.:
If you’re like me, you have a good agent who knows this stuff and is doing it. One of the things that’s happening now too, we talk about this a lot within our Land Academy community, is that we’re already seeing agents leave. And I feel bad for them, but I’ll tell you what happens. The good ones survive. The good agents are still out there and they’re doing okay, and they are hustling. I’ve got some great ones that are really hustling. That’s what it takes.

Steven Jack Butala:
So, change the message that you’re delivering to potential buyers, that’s number three, and I think we covered that pretty well. And change how you’re looking at getting buyers. Try a little harder is what I’m saying. Have that grassroots thought. How did I sell the first 20 properties that I sold… What’s a real basic business model here? It’s buy for this, sell for that. Who’s going to buy my property? If you look back at who buys your real estate, I bet you a dollar, a lot of it your dirt got sold to people in the immediate area.
Number four, and this is, I would love your input on this, Jill, because it’s important. Have somebody in your corner. You don’t want to go through this alone. You don’t want to go through happy times alone or bad times alone if you’re most people. But like I said earlier, you’re weathering a storm here. If you’re on the bow of the boat hanging on for life, you don’t want to do that alone. You want to do it with somebody. And you don’t need somebody in your life that’s criticizing you every step of the way you go.

Jill K DeWit.:
This is something we talk about too. I talk to people when they’re coming into Land Academy. It doesn’t mean you have to have a partner like we do and be all in it like each other. I would not recommend that, actually. But one of the things that I say when I talk to people and they wanted to come down, I’m like, “What does your significant other think about this? Because you’re about to start a new business. You’re about to spend all day on the computer. You’re about to go into the cave of your office doing data all day. If they’re not on board, this isn’t going to work. You need someone who understands it, gets it. They’re supportive of you. They’re going to take care of the kids today and they’re going to bring you a sandwich when you need to because they know what you’re doing is hard work, and you’re really trying to make it better for your family.” So, that’s when I think of being on the same page.

Steven Jack Butala:
I’m paraphrasing, but Jill and I joined forces during the tail end, or let’s say the middle of the last recession. And you don’t know what the middle of a recession is. You don’t know when that’s going to end.

Jill K DeWit.:
True.

Steven Jack Butala:
But she got frustrated with how I was selling. And she said, and I’m paraphrasing, “Just give me the phone.”

Jill K DeWit.:
Yep. No, I pretty much said that. “Stop it.”

Steven Jack Butala:
“Give me the phone.” And so, she went out there. She just got tough. I’m tough about a lot of other stuff, data and all kinds of things. But when it comes to just saying, “We’re selling these properties this week,” and then Jill gets it done. You need somebody in your life like that. You don’t need somebody saying, “I told you this land thing wouldn’t work.” You just don’t need that.

Jill K DeWit.:
Exactly. It made me think of the support. We were joking on our member call today, and I can’t remember, I think it was Jennifer, I don’t remember who said it, but something about, “I just lost a whole Sunday.” She was lovingly joking about losing a whole Sunday testing her mailer for a reason before it goes out. We’re like, “That’s a good way to spend a Sunday.” And she said, “You’re right.” And you made a funny-

Steven Jack Butala:
I said, “In the lists of extremely wealthy people, there’s a lot of lost Sundays.” Until you get wealthy and you pull up in a nice sports car and everybody’s like, “That guy’s really, really lucky. I wish I was that lucky.”

Jill K DeWit.:
Nope.

Steven Jack Butala:
How many Sundays of luck does it take?

Jill K DeWit.:
Correct. I love that. Oh, my gosh. Even looking at Land Academy, oh man. When we think back, because here we’re in episode 2004, I think, thinking about how many days and nights we were up early at our computers, at our desks, creating content, doing our own this, doing our own, that. This is broke, we had to fix it. Here we are.

Steven Jack Butala:
Jill and I have been shoulder-to-shoulder for 15 years and whatever comes, it comes.

Jill K DeWit.:
Thanks.

Steven Jack Butala:
We don’t blame each other. I’m not saying it’s peaches and cream because it’s hot. And in fact, I would say never work with your spouse, ever. But she doesn’t blame me for stuff and I don’t blame her. So, the infrastructure should be there or everything’s a lot harder. Most of you know exactly what we’re talking about here. It’s got to be a team effort.

Jill K DeWit.:
Such good advice. Thank you.

Steven Jack Butala:
Four things.

Jill K DeWit.:
Yeah.

Steven Jack Butala:
Take in what your cash position is. Cash management is absolutely key to surviving this and thriving it. The same is true with cash where if you go ahead and find it… If you’re short on cash now, continue to find great real estate deals. Send out mail, do what you’re doing and get into our Land Academy Discord and find yourself a great land funder.

Jill K DeWit.:
Go to landfunding.com.

Steven Jack Butala:
Or landfunding.com too. Put the deal in there.

Jill K DeWit.:
Hey, go to landacademy.com, by the way. Check it out.

Steven Jack Butala:
We’re all looking… We’re included. We’re at the top of the list. I know it’s going to happen here and we have money allocated for all of this.

Jill K DeWit.:
I’m ready. I hate to say it, I don’t want to look. We’re as ready as we can be, how’s that? I never want to assume, but we’ve been through enough. You’ve been through enough, and you are smart enough to make sure we are in a great position. I know it. This is not our first one. And I know there’s a lot of in Land Academy because of this reason, because we’ve weathered the storm. We’ve done more than 100 deals. I’m more than a year into this, fill in the blank. Even though some other people have done really well, but we really have. And if you can put your head down, give up a Sunday, do all these things we talked about, put yourself in that position and stay focused, stay on track, and try not to get discouraged by little things, because they’re going to happen, just stay the course, you will pop up for air and be right there with us. And sadly, there’ll probably be a lot less people, but we’ll all still be here.

Steven Jack Butala:
Join us next Wednesday for another interesting episode. You are not alone in your real estate ambition. We are Jack and Jill.

Jill K DeWit.:
We are Jack and Jill.

Steven Jack Butala:
Information.

Jill K DeWit.:
And inspiration.

Steven Jack Butala:
To buy undervalued property.

Jill K DeWit.:
That was great. Thank you.

Steven Jack Butala:
Good. Good.

 

Thanks for listening, and finally, don’t forget to subscribe to the show on Apple Podcasts.

No need to hire staff - we did it for you.

Land Academy PRO is the brainchild of founders Steven Jack Butala and Jill DeWit. Designed at the request of Land Academy members who are ready for a higher level, we’re excited to continue to provide the tools and support needed by professional investors.

Each level comes with a preset amount of included data, Concierge Mail service, and postage. For example, the Green level includes 6,000 units of completed-for-you mail completely out the door at no extra cost to you.

All levels include a PatLive introduction and preset script (we will set up your phone answering for you), use of Land Academy’s personal Transaction Team to manage your deal flow, an AirTable (CRM) base setup managed by our (and your!) Transaction Coordinator, personal consulting, regular office hours, and includes your Land Academy subscription cost.

If you’re making this a business, Land Academy PRO takes the work off of your plate so you can focus on the things that matter – like running your business.

Green

$10,060

per Month

Silver

$14,590

per Month

Gold

$19,120

per Month

Platinum

$23,650

per Month

Black

$28,180

per Month

Concierge Data+ (with data) Included mailers each month (data + concierge + mailer + postage). Our team will do your data for it and get it out the door.
6,000 mailers 9,000 mailers 12,000 mailers 15,000 mailers 18,000 mailers
PatLive introduction at no cost We will help you establish your first script and get PatLive set up on your behalf to answer your phones.
$500 value $500 value $500 value $500 value $500 value
Transaction Coordinator Use of our personal Transaction Coordinator team to manage your deals. Trained and ready to go!
$7,500 value $7,500 value $7,500 value $7,500 value $7,500 value
AirTable Ready-for-you CRM managed by your personal Land Academy Pro Transaction Coordinator
$100 value $100 value $100 value $100 value $100 value
Personal Consulting 1 on 1 personal consulting with our Transaction Coordinator each week.
- - $1,000 value $1,000 value $1,000 value
Regular Office Hours Regular office hours with Jack and Jill + our staff. Private for LA Pro Members Only. (Think Career Path Office Hours)
$2,500 value $2,500 value $2,500 value $2,500 value $2,500 value
ParcelFact ParcelFact is included in your LA Pro membership with unlimited pulls.
$150 value $150 value $150 value $150 value $150 value
FREE Career Path Access
$23,000 value $23,000 value $23,000 value $23,000 value $23,000 value
Land Academy No more separate charges - Land Academy is included with LA Pro Membership. This includes all education, tools, support, and future releases.
$300 value $300 value $300 value $300 value $300 value
Subtotal: $8,550 value $8,550 value $9,550 value $12,050 value $12,050 value
Mail Value: $7,500 value $11,250 value $15,000 value $18,750 value $22,500 value
Total Value: $39,050 $42,800 $47,550 $53,800 $57,550
Apply Now Apply Now Apply Now Apply Now Apply Now

Green

$10,060

per Month

Concierge Data+ (with data) Included mailers each month (data + concierge + mailer + postage). Our team will do your data for it and get it out the door.
6,000 mailers
PatLive introduction at no cost We will help you establish your first script and get PatLive set up on your behalf to answer your phones.
$500 value
Transaction Coordinator Use of our personal Transaction Coordinator team to manage your deals. Trained and ready to go!
$7,500 value
AirTable Ready-for-you CRM managed by your personal Land Academy Pro Transaction Coordinator
$100 value
Personal Consulting 1 on 1 personal consulting with our Transaction Coordinator each week.
-
Regular Office Hours Regular office hours with Jack and Jill + our staff. Private for LA Pro Members Only. (Think Career Path Office Hours)
$2,500 value
ParcelFact ParcelFact is included in your LA Pro membership with unlimited pulls.
$150 value
FREE Career Path Access
$23,000 value
Land Academy No more separate charges - Land Academy is included with LA Pro Membership. This includes all education, tools, support, and future releases.
$300 value
Subtotal: $8,550 value
Mail Value: $7,500 value
Total Value: $39,050
Apply Now

Silver

$14,590

per Month

Concierge Data+ (with data) Included mailers each month (data + concierge + mailer + postage). Our team will do your data for it and get it out the door.
9,000 mailers
PatLive introduction at no cost We will help you establish your first script and get PatLive set up on your behalf to answer your phones.
$500 value
Transaction Coordinator Use of our personal Transaction Coordinator team to manage your deals. Trained and ready to go!
$7,500 value
AirTable Ready-for-you CRM managed by your personal Land Academy Pro Transaction Coordinator
$100 value
Personal Consulting 1 on 1 personal consulting with our Transaction Coordinator each week.
-
Regular Office Hours Regular office hours with Jack and Jill + our staff. Private for LA Pro Members Only. (Think Career Path Office Hours)
$2,500 value
ParcelFact ParcelFact is included in your LA Pro membership with unlimited pulls.
$150 value
FREE Career Path Access
$23,000 value
Land Academy No more separate charges - Land Academy is included with LA Pro Membership. This includes all education, tools, support, and future releases.
$300 value
Subtotal: $8,550 value
Mail Value: $11,250 value
Total Value: $42,800
Apply Now

Gold

$19,120

per Month

Concierge Data+ (with data) Included mailers each month (data + concierge + mailer + postage). Our team will do your data for it and get it out the door.
12,000 mailers
PatLive introduction at no cost We will help you establish your first script and get PatLive set up on your behalf to answer your phones.
$500 value
Transaction Coordinator Use of our personal Transaction Coordinator team to manage your deals. Trained and ready to go!
$7,500 value
AirTable Ready-for-you CRM managed by your personal Land Academy Pro Transaction Coordinator
$100 value
Personal Consulting 1 on 1 personal consulting with our Transaction Coordinator each week.
$1,000 value
Regular Office Hours Regular office hours with Jack and Jill + our staff. Private for LA Pro Members Only. (Think Career Path Office Hours)
$2,500 value
ParcelFact ParcelFact is included in your LA Pro membership with unlimited pulls.
$150 value
FREE Career Path Access
$23,000 value
Land Academy No more separate charges - Land Academy is included with LA Pro Membership. This includes all education, tools, support, and future releases.
$300 value
Subtotal: $9,550 value
Mail Value: $15,000 value
Total Value: $47,550
Apply Now

Platinum

$23,650

per Month

Concierge Data+ (with data) Included mailers each month (data + concierge + mailer + postage). Our team will do your data for it and get it out the door.
15,000 mailers
PatLive introduction at no cost We will help you establish your first script and get PatLive set up on your behalf to answer your phones.
$500 value
Transaction Coordinator Use of our personal Transaction Coordinator team to manage your deals. Trained and ready to go!
$7,500 value
AirTable Ready-for-you CRM managed by your personal Land Academy Pro Transaction Coordinator
$100 value
Personal Consulting 1 on 1 personal consulting with our Transaction Coordinator each week.
$1,000 value
Regular Office Hours Regular office hours with Jack and Jill + our staff. Private for LA Pro Members Only. (Think Career Path Office Hours)
$2,500 value
ParcelFact ParcelFact is included in your LA Pro membership with unlimited pulls.
$150 value
FREE Career Path Access
$23,000 value
Land Academy No more separate charges - Land Academy is included with LA Pro Membership. This includes all education, tools, support, and future releases.
$300 value
Subtotal: $12,050 value
Mail Value: $18,750 value
Total Value: $53,800
Apply Now

Black

$28,180

per Month

Concierge Data+ (with data) Included mailers each month (data + concierge + mailer + postage). Our team will do your data for it and get it out the door.
18,000 mailers
PatLive introduction at no cost We will help you establish your first script and get PatLive set up on your behalf to answer your phones.
$500 value
Transaction Coordinator Use of our personal Transaction Coordinator team to manage your deals. Trained and ready to go!
$7,500 value
AirTable Ready-for-you CRM managed by your personal Land Academy Pro Transaction Coordinator
$100 value
Personal Consulting 1 on 1 personal consulting with our Transaction Coordinator each week.
$1,000 value
Regular Office Hours Regular office hours with Jack and Jill + our staff. Private for LA Pro Members Only. (Think Career Path Office Hours)
$2,500 value
ParcelFact ParcelFact is included in your LA Pro membership with unlimited pulls.
$150 value
FREE Career Path Access
$23,000 value
Land Academy No more separate charges - Land Academy is included with LA Pro Membership. This includes all education, tools, support, and future releases.
$300 value
Subtotal: $12,050 value
Mail Value: $22,500 value
Total Value: $57,550
Apply Now

Disclaimer: *We have a monthly “use it or lose it” policy with mail and data – Land Academy PRO is designed to keep you on-track and consistent.

To cancel, all packages require a 30 day notice to move you back down to regular Land Academy membership.

Office Hours Schedule

Scheduling a Career Path interview call is currently on hold and will resume closer to Fall 2024 as we approach Career Path 10.

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