Get Adobe Flash player

When you sit down and examine the advantage of owning multifamily properties, you will be amazed at the multitude of benefits. While other avenues of income generation offer some attractive incentives, owning multifamily properties brings many great things to the table. Let us explore these advantages:

1. You can outsource your property management to professionals. You don’t have to be bothered by tenants and toilets. Even if you have smaller properties, you can hire property managers. Leave the headaches to them and go on vacation! The property doesn’t own you; you own the property.

2. You can buy with NONE of your own cash. You can raise private money to cover any cash requirements. You will find that it’s easier to get financing on apartments and that the MORE you borrow the LESS they look at the borrower’s credit. In some instances, they don’t even look at the borrower’s credit but at the borrower’s assets instead.

3. Apartments are made to cash flow even with nothing down. This means that instead of there being one house with one roof generating only one source of income, you have one roof with possibly multiple apartments under it creating multiple income streams. You have economy to scale. Apartments are designed to be income-producing properties.

4. Better leverage of your time and effort. Think about it. What would you rather do? Look for ten houses or a ten-unit apartment building? On the flip side, wouldn’t you rather sell a ten-unit apartment than sell ten houses? Of course! You have more leverage of your time.

5. The value of income properties is based on income. This is a function of Net Operating Income (NOI) and you can create value by raising the rents and cutting the expenses. This is a very predictable process. You can determine how much the property is worth based on how much you raise the rents.

6. Less competition. There are less people out doing multifamily deals than single family deals because they lack mindset and they lack specialized knowledge. They have limited themselves by the mindset that says they must graduate from single-family homes to multifamily properties.

7. There is less risk. With multiple tenants you have multiple revenue streams. If you lose one client, it’s not the end of your business. On the other hand, if you are relying on a house as your sole source of income and you lose that tenant, you are still pouring money into that house. There is mitigated risk through apartments.

8. Non-recourse financing. The more money you borrow, the easier it is to borrow. When you get to loans of two million dollars and above, it becomes non-recourse financing which means the asset is the sole security for the loan. No one is personally guaranteeing the loan.

9. Condo conversion. This has been very big in some parts of the country such as Denver and Tampa. As an example, you would take a fiveplex, convert it into condos, and then sell the individual units. It is a different strategy because you’re putting all your cash forward and then pulling out. It’s not a long-term hold strategy.

10. The sub prime lender bust. With sub prime mortgage lenders falling out of the market, there are people cannot qualify for home loans. These people have to live somewhere so the demand for rentals is skyrocketing.

As you can see, the advantages to owning multifamily properties are solid and sound. With so many venues to consider when trying to find something to generate passive income for yourself, you just can’t overlook the tremendous value created by multifamily properties.


When locating private monies for your multi unit deals, there are the four key elements of being successful: Predisposed investors, control, low risk and high return. However, there is another element to making your hunt for finding investors successful. This fifth component is called the strategy of pre-eminence.

Think of the strategy of pre-eminence as you would The Golden Rule: “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” It is really that simple. You take a pre-eminent position and treat every client as you would like to be treated. This means that you have a vested interest in what type of deal they are looking for.

This strategy begins with being sure to refer to your investors as “clients” as opposed to “customers”. Client denotes someone you are going to look after in the long run while customer denotes a one-time transaction. Client is a long-term relationship.

Your private money sources are your clients for your multi unit deals. You are creating investment products for them. They expect to receive benefit from that. Because you want to have a long-term relationship with them, you treat them as a client.

Think of it this way: you are a customer at the chain jewelry store. You are just a nameless face among thousands there. No one there has a vested interest in finding out what your needs are and what they can do for you. However, if you go to your local jeweler, they will treat you as a client. They will get to know you on a personal basis and work for your repeat business.

This means that you look after them; you think like they would. You try to put yourself in your client’s shoes and look out for his or her best interest. Honesty is always the best policy. If you fudge on giving the details of a multifamily property to your potential investor, not only do you risk losing them but you risk destroying your reputation that you have built thus far.

Remember, referrals are the backbone of your multi unit business. You cannot build up your list of credible and trustworthy references if you develop a reputation for not being an honest person to deal with.

Your ability to establish a relationship of trust, reliability and integrity is the foundation for a relationship that will be mutually beneficial in the long run. The strategy of pre-eminence opens the door for you to garner stellar word-of-mouth referrals from your clients.

You want to invest in multi family properties, but with all the apartment buildings in your city, you could spend all your time looking at them, analyzing them, and comparing them without ever getting anywhere. You need a simple, effective way to analyze multi family buildings to save you time and help you make judicious decisions. The following three guidelines are all you need to rule out unprofitable deals and narrow in on the best.

1. Cap Rate. Cap Rate is an abbreviation for capitalization rate. It’s the return on investment on a percentage basis if you paid all cash. The formula for Cap Rate is NOI (Net Operating Income, which is simply your revenue minus your expenses) divided by the purchase price. Here’s an example: You have a multi family property with a NOI of $50,000 per year. You paid $500,000 for the property, so the property has a Cap Rate of 10%. It’s wise to look for properties that have a Cap Rate of at least 10%.

2. Price Per Door. The price per door is simple to calculate. Just divide the price of the property by the number of units. As a general rule, if the price per door is less than $25,000, it will probably have an acceptable Cap Rate and cash flow. The price per door also tells you the class of property you’re dealing with and whether or not it’s a deal for you. However, it isn’t wise to look only at the price per door without analyzing the other two guidelines. You may miss out on some key information that could help you make a good decision about that multi family property.

3. Unit Mix. The unit mix is the percentage of units that are one bedroom, two bedroom, and three bedroom. A property that has more two bedrooms than one bedrooms will have higher rent or higher revenue per door. Between a property that is 80% one bedrooms and another that is 80% two bedrooms, the multi family property with more two-bedroom units will have higher revenues and most likely a higher Cap Rate. Some people say they like to have more two-bedroom units than three-bedroom units because the three-bedrooms attract children. One bedroom units bring single people or couples. Two bedrooms are typically for roommates and small families.

Once you have collected the above information, you’ll be able to cut to the heart of the deal and weed out multi family properties that don’t meet your needs.

Lead Generation is at the heart and soul of any business and it is no different with multifamily investing. Are you at a loss as to how to track down sellers of multifamily properties? There are five solid resources for finding motivated sellers. These five sources are direct mail, brokers, www.loopnet.com, bird dogs and other venues.

Of these five resources, direct mail is the most effective technique. This simple technique involves mailing letters to owners of multifamily properties in your target area and asking them if they would be interested in selling.

The wonderful thing about this technique is that you can employ its use in other cities. If you are going on vacation, you can find all of the people in that city who own apartment complexes in your hometown and then send them a letter asking if they are dissatisfied with their multifamily property and let them know that you would like to buy it. Let them know when you will be in their city and when you would be able to meet them.

The second resource for finding motivated sellers is brokers. Probably the easiest method of finding brokers is through www.loopnet.com. You can get very specific about the type of property that you are looking for. You can enter a zip code with a price range and it will give you a list of all those properties that meet your criteria that are on the market.

When you are looking at the properties, some of them will have brokers. You can get the broker’s name and call him. Do not email the broker. If you are not going to even bother to pick up the phone to call then how serious are you? You should call the broker and say, “I saw your listing on www.loopnet.com. Can you tell me about it?”

After the broker tells you about it, then you say “that’s not exactly what I’m looking for. Let me tell you what I’m interested in.” Now you can tell him precisely what you are looking for. The more precise and the more knowledge you convey, the more confidence you will build in that broker that you are a serious buyer.

Loopnet.com is also a resource for finding motivated sellers. Once you find a multifamily property on Loopnet.com, you can call the seller up and negotiate. You can ask for the financials and see what is missing. If anything, Loopnet.com is a great place for you to “practice” negotiating with sellers.

The fourth resource for finding motivated sellers is the bird dog. The bird dog is someone who is out hunting deals. Their goal is to find something that looks like a deal and then they hand it to you to do the work. Bird dogs are informal brokers who scour the market for deals and then match the deals to buyers.

The fifth resource, “other”, is basically a catchall for all other types of resources in finding multifamily deals. A few of these resources are estate attorneys, Laundromat service operators, plumbers, property inspectors and insurance agents.

These five resources offer you great opportunities for attracting and getting in touch with sellers. If you utilize these resources you will have multitudes of potential sellers at your disposal.


You’ve probably heard that if you fail to plan then you plan to fail. That’s good advice, especially when it comes to buying apartment buildings for sale.

Planning is the key to success in any business and it’s no different in the multifamily investing business. I’m going to show you how to create a super-simple business plan based on my own business plan.

Now, I should tell you first tell you that there really are two different kinds of business plans. One is the kind you use to present to potential investors if you are looking for capital, or the bank if you are going after a loan. It’s clean and polished and looks pretty. That’s not the kind I’m talking about.

The other kind is a down-and-dirty, roll-up-your-sleeves, dog-eared document that you pull out every single day and review. (After a while, you’ll be so familiar with it that you will pull it out every other day, then every other week, and soon you will know it by heart, as I do). It’s what I call a “living document” because you’re always in it, always changing it, and making it useful to you. No one else will see it and you’ll use this plan to drive your business.

A business plan should be a document where, if you were to wake up with total amnesia one morning, your spouse could say to you “you are a successful apartment building investor and this is the step-by-step plan of what you’ve done”, and then you go out there and repeat the same success. So your business plan should be useful, user-friendly, and enjoyable to interact with. (Unfortunately, too many people think that their business plan needs to the be the first kind – the polished kind – so it sits on a shelf and collects dust). You can create it on your computer, print it out, and carry it with you, making notes and updating it regularly.

So, what does your plan include? Well, mine includes the three main activities I perform: Acquire, Operate, and Improve. I started by writing one page for each step with ideas and best practices and reminders to myself, all in a step-by-step format. “Acquire” is about finding multifamily apartment buildings and determining my exit strategy; “operate” is about running them, “improve” is about making them better.

As my business grew and my processes developed, I began to hone my plan. I aggressively modified each one the things I learned from every new investment. Today, my plan’s structure isn’t that different from my early days when I performed those three tasks, but you can be sure that each of those steps is tightly defined and rich in value. If I were to suddenly lose everything I had, that plan would still be worth millions to me.

Under each of the three headings I include the steps around what I do, where I do it, how long it should take, who I work with, what my intended outcomes are, and what happens if things go off the rails. It’s in a step-by-step format so that I can simply follow step one, step two, step three, etc. Of course, I rely on my instincts and bank of experience but this plan makes sure it gets done. But I’ve added a fourth heading – teach.

Today, I not only acquire, operate, and improve multifamily investments, I also teach others how to do the same. Your plan will probably start with the first three and you might find in time that it may grow to include the fourth as well. But you need to start somewhere. So start with a 3 point Acquire, operate, improve business plan and make it the most valuable pieces of paper you own.

When you sit down and examine the advantage of owning multifamily properties, you will be amazed at the multitude of benefits.  While other avenues of income generation offer some attractive incentives, owning multifamily properties brings many great things to the table.  Let us explore these advantages:

1. You can outsource your property management to professionals. You don’t have to be bothered by tenants and toilets. Even if you have smaller properties, you can hire property managers. Leave the headaches to them and go on vacation! The property doesn’t own you; you own the property.

2. You can buy with NONE of your own cash. You can raise private money to cover any cash requirements. You will find that it’s easier to get financing on apartments and that the MORE you borrow the LESS they look at the borrower’s credit. In some instances, they don’t even look at the borrower’s credit but at the borrower’s assets instead.

3. Apartments are made to cash flow even with nothing down. This means that instead of there being one house with one roof generating only one source of income, you have one roof with possibly multiple apartments under it creating multiple income streams. You have economy to scale. Apartments are designed to be income-producing properties.

4. Better leverage of your time and effort. Think about it. What would you rather do? Look for ten houses or a ten-unit apartment building? On the flip side, wouldn’t you rather sell a ten-unit apartment than sell ten houses? Of course! You have more leverage of your time.

5. The value of income properties is based on income. This is a function of Net Operating Income (NOI) and you can create value by raising the rents and cutting the expenses. This is a very predictable process. You can determine how much the property is worth based on how much you raise the rents.

6. Less competition. There are less people out doing multifamily deals than single family deals because they lack mindset and they lack specialized knowledge. They have limited themselves by the mindset that says they must graduate from single-family homes to multifamily properties.

7. There is less risk. With multiple tenants you have multiple revenue streams. If you lose one client, it’s not the end of your business. On the other hand, if you are relying on a house as your sole source of income and you lose that tenant, you are still pouring money into that house. There is mitigated risk through apartments.

8. Non-recourse financing. The more money you borrow, the easier it is to borrow. When you get to loans of two million dollars and above, it becomes non-recourse financing which means the asset is the sole security for the loan. No one is personally guaranteeing the loan.

9. Condo conversion. This has been very big in some parts of the country such as Denver and Tampa. As an example, you would take a fiveplex, convert it into condos, and then sell the individual units. It is a different strategy because you’re putting all your cash forward and then pulling out. It’s not a long-term hold strategy.

10. The sub prime lender bust. With sub prime mortgage lenders falling out of the market, there are people cannot qualify for home loans. These people have to live somewhere so the demand for rentals is skyrocketing.

As you can see, the advantages to owning multifamily properties are solid and sound.  With so many venues to consider when trying to find something to generate passive income for yourself, you just can’t overlook the tremendous value created by multifamily properties.

Are you still looking for inventive ways to get your multifamily property deal done?  The venues that you can utilize to get your deal done are numerous.  Below are ten more possibilities for you to consider.

1.  Triple New Lease Option – This is where you lease the property from the seller and you pay rent but you have an option to but as well and sublet.  This is the “lease-option” for the property.

2.  401k Loan – If you have your own 401k money or you know someone who does, you can actually borrow against it for funds.  Be careful because if it is your 401k money and you leave your job or get laid off, then the money is immediately due.  Once you leave the company you cannot borrow against it.

3.  HELOC – Home Equity Line of Credit.  If you have dead equity, pull it out.  A line of credit means you can access it whenever you want to.

4.  Home Equity Loan – You will get a lump sum amount and you pay it back over time.

5.  Credit Card Loans – A word of caution:  you need to be very judicious with this.  This is more for short-term loans, especially if you get a low APR offer.  Understand that the minimum payment will be 2% of the outstanding balance.  This could be touch from a cash flow perspective because you are paying basically 24% of the balance due over the course of a year.  It can be a great short-term play.

6.  Unsecured Lines of Credit Personally – you can go to the bank and get an unsecured line of credit personally or you may know someone who has an unsecured line of credit or who can get one and become your money partner.

7.  Unsecured Lines of Credit for Business – This is another direction for you if you have been established for a couple of years.  You can do this with your business or with someone else’s business that can become your money partner.

8.  Private Lender – someone with cash that will be a private lender.

9.  Private Equity Partner – equity partner who will put cash into your deal.

10.  Subject To – as you do it with houses, you can do this with any property.  They all have “due on sale” clauses that you need to be aware of.

As you can see, the potential private money sources are plentiful.  You do not have to rely upon all of the “old” standards.  With an abundance of sources, your ability to successfully put together your multifamily property deal is almost limitless.

You do not have to spend a gold mine on your marketing strategies for finding investors for your multifamily deals. In fact, there are some very effective ways to market your multifamily deals and not spend a dime doing it. There are four very effective and, better yet, free means of marketing your multifamily deals. These methods employ the use of referrals, charity organizations, networking and keeping an eye on your competition.

The most effective marketing strategy you have available to you is your referrals. This strategy that is used throughout the business world is also applicable to what you are doing. Referrals are absolutely fabulous at bringing in new investors.

Why are referrals so effective? Simple. People trust information that is given to them by their friends and colleagues. When you are shopping around for a physician, dentist or mechanic what do you do?

You ask around. Some people may rely on the Yellow Pages but the majority of people want to hear it from people they trust that a certain person or business is reputable. This is why it so important for you to begin building your reputation and for you to work with reputable contractors as well.

Your reputation precedes you and when people are pleased with you and the work you do, word will spread like wildfire. Never underestimate the power of referrals and never dismiss the importance of a stellar reputation to help you build your references.

Another free marketing opportunity for your multifamily deals is helping out at a charity fundraiser. If you sit on the board of any charitable organizations, you have a great pool of potential investors at your fingertips. You are able to get in touch with people that have money and money that they are looking to invest.

Good old-fashioned networking is another free marketing method. Network with fellow members at clubs you belong to. Reach out to those people that are in your focus groups. Take the opportunity when you are at work and hanging out with colleagues at the water cooler to let them know about your multifamily property deal and see if they are interested or if they might know someone who would be interested.

Another method of free marketing that is sometimes overlooked, is spying on your competition. Find out where they are getting their money and how they are funding their deals. Use your network to do this.

All of the strategies mentioned above are effective and cost you nothing. Take advantage of these strategies and put them to work for you. You will be pleased with the results and at the money you save.

Have you ever pondered what it takes to create wealth? In order to get on your path to financial freedom, you need to understand what it takes to get there. In any real estate or business venture or even in our personal lives, there are three things that need to occur simultaneously to create wealth for us. Those three things are Active Income, Passive Income and Enhancing our net worth and increasing our asset base.

Active income is where you exchange your time and energy for income. You are active and working at it. If you do not work at it, you do not get paid. Another term for this would be working income. Your current job would be considered active income.

Your active income will not make you rich unless you are building something that will generate passive income. It does not matter if it is a high paying active income job; the bottom line is if you do not show up and do the job, you will not get paid. Some examples of active income in real estate are property managers, home appraisers, real estate agents and contractors.

Passive income is income that is generated by assets or other people where you are not actively participating. Apartments are a good example of passive income. You either invest your money into it and make it a passive vehicle for you or you invest your time and energy one time to create it and the asset pays you forever. Passive income examples for real estate are rental properties, equity participation and private money lending.

Passive income is really the path to financial freedom. The basic definition of financial freedom is when your passive income is more than adequate to pay for your desired lifestyle. To create your financial freedom plan, you must figure out how much you require per month to pay for your desired lifestyle and what investment vehicles you are going to use to get there.

Enhancing our net worth and increasing our asset base is the third step in creating wealth. First, we need to define net worth and asset. Net worth is simply the difference between your assets and your liabilities. Assets are anything that delivers monthly income. They are yet another means of producing passive income. Everything comes back to passive income when it comes to securing your financial freedom.

Once you come to the realization that passive, not active, income is the key to your financial freedom, then you have taken the very first step toward creating wealth for yourself.

When you are trying to pitch potential investors a deal, you have 20 seconds to catch their imagination.  In that 20 seconds, you need to address the investors’ “What’s in it for me” mentality.  You need to talk to their reasons “why” they need the money.  You need an “elevator speech”.

Here’s an example:

I have the perfect deal for someone with $75,000 in your IRA looking to earn 15% APR over the next 6 months.  You can earn 15% APR on a sustained basis if you choose.  You won’t need to keep reworking your IRA money anymore.  All of our deals are validated by third party appraisals and third party rehab costs.  The projects are run by a very experienced rehabber who has done 8 house rehabs on budget in the last 24 months.  I have a flyer with all of the benefits on the table.  I will be in the back of the room.  My name is Lance.  Come see me during the break.

Let’s break it down.  This pitch is very specific:

“someone with $75,000 in your IRA looking to earn 15% APR over the next 6 months.  You can earn 15% APR on a sustained basis if you choose.”  – You are giving them a choice on how they can earn their 15%.

“You won’t need to keep reworking your IRA money anymore.” – You are presuming that there is a problem.

“All of our deals are validated by third party appraisals and third party rehab costs.” – You don’t go into detail but you assure them that there is nothing to worry about.  You have the bases covered.

“The projects are run by a very experienced rehabber” – You are selling people the experience or your team.  People feel secure with experience.

“who has done 8 house rehabs on budget in the last 24 months.” – this solidifies your statement of experience.

“I have a flyer with all of the benefits on the table.  I will be in the back of the room.  My name is Lance.  Come see me during the break.” – You’re not waiting for a phone call; you are ready to talk right now.

Be sure that your elevator speech addresses at least some of the benefits of control, low risk and high return.  If you get their attention, they will come talk to you and then you can highlight the features of your deal.  The key is to grab their attention.  Once you have accomplished that, you can go over the particulars of the deal.

Fill in your name and email below to send your free reports to your inbox.

SECURE AND CONFIDENTIAL
Unsubscribe any time.