Whether you are just getting started or are an “old pro” real estate investor, you will benefit from the many real-life examples in “Making Big Money Investing in Foreclosures Without Cash or Credit, Second Edition” by Peter Conti. The author shares dozens of stories of his students to illustrate the topics being explained, such as how to finance acquisitions with little cash, how to buy right, whether to quickly sell or hold for long-term investment, and which properties to avoid.
Just in time to take advantage of the current “glut” of foreclosures and other distress properties, this new book explains the basic procedures and when to use each one. Conti says his favorite time to acquire a property in trouble (it’s never the borrower who is in trouble) is before the foreclosure auction. Most of the book is focused on negotiations with motivated sellers who must sell before losing their property.
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Throughout the book there are real-life examples from the mentorship experiences of Conti’s students. They add realism to the explanations of just about everything investors need to know about acquiring foreclosures.
If the book has a weakness, it doesn’t explain how to find and track foreclosures. Having bought my share of these properties and having wasted countless hours keeping records of foreclosure opportunities only to have the mortgages reinstated, I was hoping for details on how Conti locates and tracks foreclosures without wasting time.
Although the book heavily emphasizes how to buy from motivated sellers, there is virtually no material about when to buy at the foreclosure auction if the property is over-encumbered for more than its market value, or buying REO (real estate-owned) homes direct from foreclosing lenders if no bidders showed up at the foreclosure sale.
The book’s best chapter, by far, is called “The Instant Offer System.” It is mostly about negotiation strategies to make the seller convince the buyer to purchase the property. “Remember, when you are negotiating with a seller, you need to play the role of the reluctant buyer,” Conti advises.
This highly organized, easy-to-read book is not only very enjoyable, it is highly educational even if you have considerable real estate experience. The author explains virtually every property acquisition method and when to use each. He heavily emphasizes how to acquire properties using little or none of the investor’s own cash.
Perhaps I shouldn’t give away the book’s best acquisition strategy, but it is called “what if?” The purpose is to avoid the seller’s rejection of the buyer’s purchase offer. By using the words “what if?” the buyer makes the seller think he thought of the way the buyer wants to buy the property.
Closely related is the buyer’s line, “You’ll probably hate it (negative phrasing) but what if I were to make up the back payments, buy the property and take over the payments from here on out?” These negotiation methods are designed to make the seller want to accept the buyer’s offered terms.
Chapter topics include “You Can Earn Up to an Extra $100,000 This Year in Foreclosures”; “12 Ways to Structure Deals Without Cash or Credit”; “How to Invest in the Changing Market Conditions We All Face”; “24 Foreclosure Pitfalls That Can Cost You Big”; “How to Flip Your Deals for Quick Cash Profits”; “Investing for Long-Term Wealth Buildup”; and “Putting It All Into Action.”
This is the best up-to-date “how to buy foreclosures” book currently on the market. Although all of Conti’s methods won’t work in every local market, he does a very thorough job of explaining them and letting the reader choose which one to use in each situation. On my scale of one to 10, this excellent new book rates a solid 10.
“Making Big Money Investing in Foreclosures Without Cash or Credit, Second Edition,” by Peter Conti (Kaplan Publishing Co., New York), 2007, $18.95, 250 pages; available in stock or by special order at local bookstores, public libraries and www.Amazon.com.
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