Whether you are already a successful “tycoon” real estate investor or a beginner, Ron LeGrand’s “How to be a Quick Turn Real Estate Millionaire” is required reading for you. Having bought more than 1,500 houses for investment, and taught more than 300,000 real estate students, this Florida author is extremely well qualified to share his realty investment secrets.
Not since Robert G. Allen’s classic “Nothing Down” real estate book in the 1980s has there been such a well-written and detailed “how to do it” guidebook for realty investors. What makes this book especially outstanding and believable are the dozens of real-life examples, with photos, from LeGrand’s students showing how they used his techniques to personally profit.
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The most memorable and outstanding example is Marco Kozlowski from Orlando, Fla. He gives LeGrand the credit for teaching him how to earn $2.45 million in just one transaction involving a home that a Realtor had listed but been unable to sell for four years. Kozlowski, a 30-something new investor, earned his profit in just 43 days with only a $100 investment to option the property.
LeGrand’s “rags to riches” personal story from bankrupt auto mechanic in 1982 to multimillionaire is inspiring. Although he now teaches real estate courses throughout the nation, LeGrand still buys and sells two or three houses per month as investments. “I’ve spoken to audiences as small as 20 and as large as 20,000 in hotel meeting rooms and coliseums all across North America,” LeGrand explains.
The book begins by emphasizing why investors in real estate should first concentrate on cash flow from “quick turn” house acquisitions and resales, and then switch to longer-term realty investments. LeGrand explains why owning many rentals, whether houses or apartments, is not as profitable as immediate property turnovers.
The author has five basic profit techniques. They are (1) rehabbing and retailing; (2) wholesaling; (3) getting the deed; (4) lease-options; and (5) options.
He explains how to evaluate situations appropriate for each method. Although LeGrand recommends buying and selling in working-class neighborhoods, he also shows how to profit from more expensive houses, as Marco did.
LeGrand is a big advocate of taking over existing mortgages on homes by purchasing “subject to” current mortgages. He advises staying away from banks, although he does recommend borrowing from mortgage brokers rather than taking on partners as he did when starting out.
The first key to success investing in houses, LeGrand emphasizes, is to purchase from motivated sellers. He suggests many techniques for finding them. “The harder they are to find, the bigger the profit,” the author explains. “Sellers who need to sell will make you rich. Sellers who want to sell will make you old and tired and will put you out of business,” he counsels.
LeGrand’s second success key is to use his “magic formula” when making cash offers. He recommends buying for “after repair value” times 70 percent, minus repair costs. The author calls this the “maximum allowable offer.” Then he adds, “Your offer should always be at least $5,000 below MAO, or don’t buy the house.”
However, even LeGrand admits, after acquiring more than 1,500 houses, he has never been right about estimating fix-up costs. He advises picking a number, such as $5,000, $10,000, up to $25,000, but you’ll probably be wrong.
Not only does this fascinating new book go into detail, but it shows the reader “the big picture” of how to first solve your cash flow problem and then invest in real estate for longer-term financial wealth.
One of the most valuable chapters provides explicit negotiation skills for buyers to use when purchasing houses, no matter what the price range, from sellers who appear to be motivated to sell. LeGrand calls these techniques his “magic words that make millions for the real estate entrepreneur.”
Chapter topics include “You Can Get a Big Check in Days, Not Years”; “Eight Myths About Making Money”; “Everyone Wins or I Won’t Play”; “Five Ways to Profit”; “Locating Prospects”; “Constructing and Presenting Offers”; “Following Up”; “Selling Houses Fast”; “Where to Get the Money with No Credit or Partners”; “How You Can Retire with an IRA Worth $1 Million”; and “Land Trusts and Legal Considerations.” The Appendix includes forms LeGrand uses.
The emphasis throughout this outstanding new book is making money without investing money of your own. LeGrand says the best deals he made were when he was broke. “If you can’t make money without money, you can’t make money with money,” he advises. On my scale of one to 10, this superb book, which cannot be recommended too highly, rates an off-the-chart 12.
“How to be a Quick Turn Real Estate Millionaire,” by Ron LeGrand (Dearborn-Kaplan Publishing Co., Chicago), 2004, $21.95, 204 pages; Available in stock or by special order at local bookstores, public libraries, and www.amazon.com.
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