Mark Homer and I have been in property since 2003 and 2005 respectively. This doesn’t give us the right to boast or say we are experts, but it does teach you a lot. You can make a lot of mistakes in 15 years, and you can see others succeed and fail too. I always try to analyse the commonalities of people who succeed over the long term, what has worked for us, and to try to understand why those who fail, well, fail.
Here are 8 commonalities across the board of the best property investors vs. the rest, and you will notice all of these are learned skills and traits that don’t involve inheriting lots of money or having property tycoon parents:
There will always be ebbs and flows, high and lows, wins and losses. You will have your fair share of good and bad luck. The market and strategies and lending and regulations will continually change. This is the same for all of us. Those who keep going and keep growing, slow and steady sometimes, get there in the end, and in their own time. Those who embrace the change and see it as an opportunity evolve with the market. I have lost count of how many people flew out of the blocks hard and fast but then fell off the radar after a couple of small knock backs.
A simple 4 step model we created at Progressive Property of what to keep focused on through all cycles. In order: Viewings, Offers, Finance, Management. In almost all cases where people drift away or give up, I check that they are maintaining consistent V.O.F.M, and of course they are not. This needs to be be maintained, even if it is only a couple of viewings a week and two offers a month. It doesn’t matter how much, it matters how long. It is not complicated, and it is not supposed to be. It is the core of being a successful property investor. imagine if you kept that up for a decade. V. O. and F. relate to buying and owning property, M. relates to ongoing management and cashflow of property.
3. A balanced view & emotional management
We’ve seen 1000s of "I'm so excited" people who can't maintain the energy. We’ve also seen just as many glass half empty people too, who get sucked into believing the critics and haters. When people say "you can't" they usually mean "I don't know how". But being hyper positive without balancing the risks and downsides is also dangerous. Try to see both sides of all situations, and you will maintain more consistency and enduring success. Manage your emotions when you get offers rejected, down valuations, finance pulled at the last minute; because these are all NORMAL.
4. Real understanding of assets and passive income
It takes time to set up assets and create ongoing passive income, but not a lifetime. It can be done, just not overnight. You need to set to forget. You need to work hard enough not to have to work hard. But if you don't set up assets that pay passive, residual income, you'll be working until you die. Invest as much of your time into (property) assets, set them up securely, manage them well, systemise them, build up your power team around them, and periodically check them. There’s also nothing wrong with active income, you could choose to have both.
5. Continual learning
If you plateau, be it from job to entrepreneur, or single let to multi-let strategies, or comfortable to successful, you grind to a halt. Then you die out. We saw so many experienced investors disappear after the 2008 crash, because they didn’t embrace the new landscape and the evolved cashflow and capital strategies. The education on yourself never stops. Not just strategies and investing, but understanding yourself, managing relationships with people, the methods of finance raising, marketing, money, markets and more. It's a continual journey of learning and growing.
6. Contacts and connections
Another asset that continually builds over time is your power team; your black book of great, well connected contacts. More access to finance, brokers and lawyers and partners; you can never know enough good people. Keep building and nurturing good relations and equitable partnerships on an ongoing basis. People start well but often go underground when someone doesn't walk up to them with a briefcase full of cash after a couple of networking events. See your black book of contacts as an asset like you do property. Build and nurture it.
7. Problem solving (mentality)
There will always be problems. Sorry if you don’t want to hear it, but it is the reality. They will OFTEN happen when you least expect them and don't want them. The timing will often be bad. This is the nature of problems. It doesn’t mean it can’t be done. In fact it filters out those not committed. Rather than melt down and blame the universe when issues arise, or go into full blown victim mode, roll up your sleeves and tackle them HEAD ON. This can be done by you for big challenges, and leveraged but managed by you for smaller ones. Those who continually solve problems and take responsibility for them, grow, and those who don’t, decay. It is a mindset as well as a skillset to staying enthusiastic through consistent challenges, and this really separates the best from the rest.
8. Patience vs. persistence balance
Stay hungry, stay humble, stay on track. So many people change course or lose enthusiasm or belief without giving it enough time to mature. A couple of knock backs and they're gone. You simply have to keep going, you will get there if you stay consistent, BUT not become so 'persistent' that you annoy and push people away. Remember you have TIME. Give it time, and balance making it happen versus letting go and allowing things to come in their own time. If things or people don’t result in the outcomes you want, stay gracious and keep the door open for future dealings. You never know when a vendor or agent or financier might come back to you.
I hope these help you. Feel free to ask me any Questions you have in the Progressive Property community here