Episode 339: Lead Generation Through VAs With Joe McCall
A business should not be a one-man show. On today’s episode, Mitch Stephen talks to real estate expert and coach Joe McCall about lead generation through VAs and the importance of having extra hands to help you steer your business. Joe shares the reasons why you need to get a VA as soon as possible to manage your CRM for you. He presents the many things a VA can do for you as well as the different platforms he uses to work well with VAs and for CRM.
Watch the episode here:
I’ve got Joe McCall. I met Joe at a Collective Genius Mastermind. I met a lot of cool people there. In fact, that’s where I learned to own a real business. I went there on purpose to figure out how to get out of my way, get out of my business and make a business that runs. I can happily say thanks to Joe and a lot of people in that room, I was able to unwind and then rewind. I let these guys rewind me back. I have not seen the last 350 houses I’ve bought in my hometown. I have not seen nor talked to the last 350 people that bought my houses. I’ll do 120 houses and I won’t see any of them. Make no mistake, I’m in control. I’ve got my spreadsheets. I’ve been in this town for many years. Joe, I figured this out. We did the math. I have bought a house in San Antonio, Texas every 4 to 5 days for 22 years. It’s was like, “Where does it go?” We met at The Collective Genius. It’s a great group of people. We have our quarterly meetings and it costs you $30,000. It costs you a penny that year to go to that thing because A) The seat is not cheap and rightfully so. B) You pay for your own hotel and your own flights. C) We go out a lot in the evenings and these people don’t go to Whataburger or Burger King. These people go to nice places. It was fun though.
I don’t think we ever went to Whataburger.
No. When I was talking to you back then, that was quite a long time ago.
Probably several years ago.
You are doing a lot of Podio stuff, but you’ve always amazed me with your ability to travel around the world and do wholesale deals all over the place and doing from afar. I interviewed you a long time ago and you were in an RV in Yellowstone. You bought a couple of houses that week and made more money than most people make it a job. They have to show up to 60 hours a week.
It’s awesome. This business allows you to do that. It’s simple, Mitch. I heard this one guy talk about in his business how he set up his systems and he says, “It’s easy. I make a list of everything you’ve got to do. I asked myself a simple question, ‘How can I do none of this?’”
First, you make a list of everything you’ve got to do and you don’t do any of it.
What a revolutionary concept. I started doing that. In my wholesaling and lease options business. I said, “We got to do the marketing, we got to talk to sellers. We got to make offers. We’ve got to take pictures and show the house and sell the house. How can I get myself completely 100% removed from that?” I had an acquisitions manager at the time. I thought the key to doing more deals and make more money was to hire an acquisitions manager. I did. I trained him. It was hard work training him. At first, he went from making $8 an hour at Home Depot.
He left you.
He did but that’s another story. Here’s what happened. He was all excited about making $3,000 per deal. He thought that was the best thing in the world. I was trying to push him to get $10,000 per deal, the wholesaling profit. Finally, I got him to $5,000. He was comfortable with making a $5,000 profit. I got him comfortable with making $7,000 but then $8,000. Our average profits started being around $8,500 per deal. We were doing 3 to 4 deals a week, which was awesome. I was busier than ever. I was still going to the title company. I was still putting out fires, coaching him and answering questions from him all the time. Every single deal is different.
There was always something that came up at the last minute, where we had an emergency. I had to fix something. I had to pay for something to get it closed. There’s always something going with the buyers. I didn’t like it. At the end of the day, I was looking at all my marketing costs, I’m paying the acquisitions manager and my overhead. I was only netting 45% to 50% of the deal. I thought, “This is a lot of work for 40% of the profits.” I shouldn’t be complaining because that was still good. I made that list. I said, “How can I get someone else to do all of this for me?”
Can I ask what you’re complaining about the 40%? What was that a month or a year?
It’s $4,000 per deal on average. It is about $12,000 a week. That’s $48,000 a month.
I want to get straight what he’s complaining about.
I was complaining about the work involved, not the money. To put it in perspective, it is sad that we’re doing well in the business and it’s better than I ever had. I’m looking at different opportunities.
The point is making money starts to be the easy part. The problem is how do you get free and still keep most, if not all or more of the money? That becomes the new level of the challenge, which got to a point where that was your new challenge. How do I don’t do anything and make this or more?
The sad thing for me is I look at an opportunity then I can only make $10,000 a month doing that. I’m like, “I don’t want to waste my time.” I remember thinking back several years ago. If I could make $10,000 a month doing this thing, I would be all over that. I’d be super excited. The more successful you get, the more opportunities come your way as well. It becomes a challenge to figure out, “I can’t do all of these things. What’s the number one thing I could do?” This comes back to what I was talking about. I was part of this coaching program called Lifeonaire at the time. It was taught by a guy named Shaun McCloskey and Steve Cook. They were teaching about designing a vision for your life first, and then designing a business around that.
I started thinking about, “What am I want my life to look like?” I don’t want to work super hard, 50 to 60 hours a week, then retire and finally get to live the lifestyle when I’m 65. My kids are out of the house and who knows what they’re doing. They’re living all around the world. I was like, “I would rather live that lifestyle now.” I’d rather go see the world now with my kids. I would rather go travel around an RV while we have kids, when I can enjoy it and while I’m not old and crippled ever.
You don’t know how much time do you because you may not make it to 65.
I heard many stories of people retiring at 65 and dying a year later. That’s depressing. I don’t want to do that. I said, “Let’s design a vision for my life. What do I want my life to look like?” I want to work from home. I want to be able to work from anywhere in the world. I want a mobile independent business where all I need is my laptop and a cell phone. I can run my business from anywhere in the world. I’m not tied down to an office. I have low overhead, maybe with a couple of employees. I have a bunch of VA’s maybe. I don’t want this big organism with 20, 30, 50 people in a big office and all of that. I thought, “I want to be able to travel. I want my kids to be homeschooled. I want to have a nice house.” We have this house, it’s on three acres. It’s private. I thought, “Let’s design a vision for life and then design a business around that.” That was the thing. We want to travel. We want to go on an RV for three months. A year later, we went to Prague in the Czech Republic for three months.
I thought, “How can I do none of this?” I thought, “In marketing, I can get my assistant to do the marketing. I can get a VA to handle the calls.” I had Podio who’s managing all the leads. I built the systems and I went out and I partnered with local wholesalers. These are the guys that I knew and trusted that were already doing deals. I said to them, “What if I brought you prequalified, pre-screened leads? Could you get them under contract and sell them and we’ll split the deals 50/50?” I was working with three or four guys at the time and they were like, “Yes, that’s a fantastic idea.” They’re not the ones that like to be handling a ton of leads. They get buried in post-it notes and yellow pads of paper. They just want to be in their car or truck driving around looking at houses and talking to sellers. That’s all they want to do.
There are some people that’s what they do. That’s what turns them on. My business partner, Mike Powell, is like that. He doesn’t want to do anything else. He just wants to write contracts. He likes that game.
Find that guy and say, “What if I did the marketing? I’ll get my VAs to prescreen the leads. I’ll give you prescreened motivated leads. You get them, you negotiate and get them under contract and flip them. We’ll split the net profits 50/50.” It worked out great. We did that for a long time.
The challenge for them is how much can I get in a wholesale deal? They don’t limit themselves. The ones that are good at what they do, they’ll let the predicament predict how much they can make or not make. They won’t say, “I’ve got $3,000.” That’s good enough and leave. They want to know how much is it in every deal that they can get. If you’re the negotiator, you let that wholesale profit rise to wherever it can go.
Here’s the crazy thing, I was making more money doing than I was with my acquisitions manager and doing zero work. Here’s the reason why I was making more money. You said, “Joe, you’re splitting the deal.” I said, “I’m splitting the pie, but it’s a bigger pie.” These guys are better at negotiating deals. They’re meeting with the seller at the kitchen table. They negotiated a lower price than I would’ve gotten over the phone. Because they had good buyers, they were selling them at a higher price than I would have on my own. Because I’m doing this with this guy, I can do more deals so I’ve got more pies to split as well. It just worked out well.
There are a lot of things that need to go on administratively and with systems and stuff, but people are worried. They were like, “What if the guy goes behind your back?” We wouldn’t let that happen because I managed the leads. I owned the leads. All the leads were in my CRM. I had to see the A to the B side and the B to C side. All had to be tracked inside of my CRM. I had my assistant constantly following up with the wholesalers. That’s how we were able to travel and do deals virtually. I wasn’t on the phone at Yellowstone talking to sellers. You certainly could do that. I found somebody that could do that for me instead.
In this scenario, are you responsible for the money or are you flipping contracts?
I’m just flipping contracts. When I was doing a lot of lease options when I first quit my job, I would be the guy on the phone getting the sellers to agree to a lease option. Once that happened, I had a leasing agent that would find tenant-buyers for me. That’s the hardest part of the whole thing, getting advertising and marketing of the property. I had to hire a realtor to do it.
You were doing it all and you were making $48,000 a month. Even if you’re making $28,000, it doesn’t matter. The point is you’ve got to perfect the system in a way to get your head above water, your torso above water all the way up to your ankles, then you have some R&D money or research and development money where you can go out and try some things that don’t necessarily work but you’re not going under. That’s where a lot of people hit a roadblock. A lot of people will try to do what you’re telling them to do right out of the gate. It takes a little bit of a cushion. Do you agree or you don’t agree?
You have to have some money to pay for marketing. You have to frontload it with some investment of capital to pay for the marketing. When you’re doing direct mail and cold calling, it takes 2 to 3 months to build up the momentum to get the leads coming in. One thing you’ll find out is that most of your deals come from the follow-up. It’s not the first time you talked to the seller. It’s the sixth or seventh time.
We’re on our eighth. We are buying things after the seventh call. After that, something happens. We’re tracking that.
Many people forget that, Mitch. The most important thing at this is you’ve got to make sure you have the systems and the people in place that are willing to follow up 7, 8, or 10 times with these sellers because that’s where the deals happen.
The more you can automate that, the better it is too. That’s a good CRM. That stuff takes time and money too. We’ve put together a Podio CRM with the use of Podio Professionals. We drew the tree, what we wanted to happen and then we coached with the professional to get it done. It’s taken six months and it’s been a pain in the butt. I was like, “When can I get my hands on it?” The whole office is going to function from that CRM. If you don’t know how the CRM works, it is Customer Relations Management. A salesman gets a house under contract, gets a lead. It’s entered in there. Who takes it from here? The sales guy or the VA is going to call. Once they’ve made contact, they turn it over to the closer. Every time someone clicks on a button, the task moves on to the next person, “We got this house under contract, Shannon. It needs to go to the title company.”The more successful you get, the more opportunities come your way. Click To Tweet
It starts bouncing around and multiple people are getting multiple messages of this house is in this stage. Now, you need to do this for that house. It’ll take about 80% of your load off your office if you get the right one and you have a good one and you built it. Everyone’s like, “Can I use your CRM?” I say, “My CRM is not going to work for you. My office is not like your office.” The people I got doing in this chair, you may have over in another chair doing three other things. It doesn’t work like that.
A lot of you guys, you’re a one-man show. Maybe you’ve got a VA. Maybe you’ve got somebody helping you with acquisitions, but this is easy. This is one of the first things that you should automate. First of all, you need to get away from your CRM. You need to step away from the computer. Your money is made on the phone talking to sellers and making offers. If many people fall into the trap of sitting behind a computer for hours a day trying to update the CRM with notes, tasks and follow up and trying to do it all themselves. That’s $5 an hour activity. You need to get a VA as soon as possible to manage your CRM for you. It’s easy once you find a good VA that manages your CRM. I use Voxer a lot. Voxer is a smartphone messaging app. It’s like a walkie-talkie for your smartphone. You can have it on an Android or iPhone. I can Voxer my notes to the VA, “I talked to the seller at 123 Main Street.” The CRM I use records the phone calls. I can say, “Listen to the recorded phone call. Take the notes from there. It’s listed. The realtor, it expires in two months. Remind me in 30 days to call them back and follow up with them and go ahead and send them a letter.”
I Voxer the VA. The VA gets that message, updates the CRM and does the follow-up and reminder tasks and appointments and stuff like that for me. The VA looks into the CRM to see who’s the next person that Joe needs to call. She sends that to me in Voxer, “Go ahead and call this seller. Here’s the information.” One of the things she could do on your phone is set up an email account that only your VA has. Every seller that you need to call, she puts all that information into one email and sends you the email. When you’re sitting there in your car or wherever you are, you look at the next email. You see all the information that you need to have on that deal. You call that seller back with the notes. You Voxer your notes back to the VA. You delete the email, go to the next email.
Let’s be clear. Voxer is voice-driven, so it’s safe to use in the car when you have the automation. You tell him when he says send them in your notes. You’re going to tell him with your mouth into the speaker and send it off to them a recorded message. I don’t think there should ever be a one-man show if you’re going into this business. You have to have at least one VA. It’s stupid not to have one. You can get one for $3 to $5 an hour. No matter what level you’re at, there are probably ten things that they can do for you if you sit down and think about it that you’re wasting your time on.
You touched my heartstrings here because VA can do so much for you that you don’t even realize. The most important thing they can do for you is your marketing. They could scrape data off of websites. They can go to your core websites and pull evictions, divorces. Sometimes, you can get public information on utilities or in probates. If utilities have been shut off or tax delinquents, they can go get that data. Another thing I like my VAs to do is to go and find rentals. I have my target zip codes. They go and they get the rentals that are in that zip code. They put them into a spreadsheet. They find out who the owner is and send them one-off letters.
We send letters one at a time through Click2Mail with a picture of the seller’s house to the seller from rentals on Zillow. They can send text messages. They can send emails. One of the things we’d like to do is go find older listings on the MLS. We send the realtor an email, “This property at 123 Main Street, is this still available? It looks like a nice house.” To start the conversation, talk to the realtor and say, “Why hasn’t it sold yet? It seems like it’s a good price, but we’re looking for properties that need some work that only an investor would buy that had been listed for 60 or 90 days or more.” My VA starts the conversations for me. When it elevates to a point where it’s like, “I need to get involved,” I join in the conversation at that point. You can hire one full-time marketing VA. Almost everybody here could hire one full-time marketing VA and have that VA busy pretty quickly, 40 hours a week just doing marketing and getting you free leads. It could be you go to Zillow and send text messages to rentals and fisbos, send emails to realtors, scrape data from the county court websites. There are 100 things that the VA can do for you.
One of the things that you can do for us is there are 37,000 people that are delinquent on their property taxes in my town. I don’t want to deal with all of them. I want to deal with the top 25% of those houses that tell me through the data that they have the most equity in those houses. There’s room to bargain with me. We get rid of the ones that they got a new loan on it. There’s no equity in it. You could still buy those houses and make money, but that’s not what I do. What I want to do is tell me the ones that the mortgage is over twenty years old and put those in a spreadsheet for me or over fifteen years old. There shouldn’t be a one-man show ever in this business. I don’t even understand it.
The first thing you get a VA to do is marketing. The second thing that you get a VA to do is to update your CRM. You shouldn’t be the CRM expert in your business. Your VA should be the one that goes in there and manages it for you. You’re only spending your time talking to sellers and making offers. That’s the only thing you should be doing. I know some guys that chicken scratch their notes on a yellow pad of paper but it’s legible. They take a picture of their notes on that yellow pad of paper and send a picture of those notes to the VA. Maybe you have a seller lead sheet with fields that you fill in like bedrooms, baths, addresses, notes and motivation levels 1 to 5. You can circle and write in these things. Take a picture of that from your phone and send it to your VA. Have your VA update the CRM for you. If there’s a task or somebody that you need to call that day, they send you one email for each task first thing in the morning. They only send you three emails. It goes to an inbox that only that VA has. The only emails in there are the emails from your VA that things that you need to do.
You call that seller. Voxer your notes or take a picture of your notes back to the VA. Delete the email and go to the next email. By the time you’re done with those three emails, Voxer your VA back again and say, “I need some more sellers to call.” Here’s the whole point. You get away from losing your notes and yellow pads of paper and post-it notes everywhere to immediately that gets inputted into your CRM by your VA. A lot of times, I like to make offers to every single seller I talk to. Even if they say, “No, I’m not interested.” I still want to send them something in the mail. We send them a letter. We send them an offer. We send them a lease-purchase offer or a cash offer.
We still contact everybody no matter what. You will beat the price, even the ones that tell you to get off their property. You’ve insulted them with your price and they’re mad. We still send whatever that offer was to them. You’d be surprised several months, they finally figured out the property’s not worth $1 million. I remember some of these people back when this was happening, I’d say, “That’s the guy that chewed my butt out and told me that they would kick me out to the street.” I wouldn’t acknowledge that. I said, “I’m glad you called back. Why me?” Many times, the answer was, “You’re the only one that ever bothered to send a real legitimate contract.”
Do you send it in the mail or by email?
Every way. It’s all about the touches. I’m going to send it in the mail and then three days later, it’s programmed to send out an email with the contract that says, “I sent this out in the mail, but in case you didn’t get the physical contract in your mailbox, here’s a digital copy.”
I’m going to share something with your audience. Here’s the cool thing. Your VA in the Philippines, they should be working for you full-time during your hours, 9:00 to 6:00 Central Time. I’m going to sign into my account on Click2Mail. You have to preload credits. I have $50 in there. There are two ways that your VA from the Philippines can send physical mail for you from the US first-class next day. It’s simple because it’s not like they’re sending mail from the Philippines. They’re sending mail through a website to the sellers for you. There’s something here called Email-to-Mail. It allows you to send an email from a pre-approved email address to a specific Click2Mail email. If you attach a letter or PDF, in the subject line, put the person’s name, address, city, state, zip. You email that to Click2Mail. They will print the attachment and send it in the physical mail first-class to the seller the next day.
All your VA needs to do is create the letter in Google Docs or in Word, then email that letter to Click2Mail. For a one-page letter, it costs $0.80. This is another service called Easy Letter Sender. What I have my VAs do is they’ll go to Zillow. I’ll go into one of my favorites zip codes and I’m going to look for rental properties in that code. It’s been on Zillow for 113 days at $750 a month rental. It’s ugly. It needs some work. It’s listed by some listing agent or property manager. I want to send a letter to the homeowner. This rental property is vacant.
It is vacant and it’s outdated.
There’s a good chance that this seller might be motivated. What I have my VA do is they’ll go to the county records, get the address, the name and the address of the owner and put it in a spreadsheet. What they’ll do is they’ll go take a little picture of this house. I’m going to save it onto my hard drive. I’m going to go to Easy Letters Sender. I’m going to send a letter to this seller with a picture of the house. It’s a letter with a picture of their house with a word across it that says something like, “Can I buy your house? Is this your house?” It’s a letter. They open it and you can pick a yellow or white paper.
It is a huge window envelope. That’s clever.
I’m doing it in an old typewriter font, big and bold. The letter says, “Sorry for being short, but I’m interested in buying your property at the address. If you’re interested in selling, call me.” That’s it. Since I’m a realtor, I’ll say on there, “If your property is listed with the realtor, please give them this letter,” with my name and phone number. Your VAs can do this super easily from here. You can do a letter or a postcard. Your VA can do this from the Philippines. This postcard costs $0.60. I can do fit to size. I’ll have my VA go to Google Drive. We’ll create a new Google slide. It is Google’s version of PowerPoint. I’m going to insert a picture from my computer. I’m going to insert a little text box that says, “Is this your house?”
I’m going to highlight it. I’m going to make it a bold. I’m going to make it a 40 font. I’m going to make it red. I’m going to highlight it with yellow. I’m going to tilt it a little bit. I’m going to do a screenshot of that. I’m going to save it on my hard drive. I’m going to go to Click2Mail and I’m going to select a new image. This is the picture that’s going to go on the postcard. Save it and it’s going to put it on the postcard like this, “My name is Mitch. You wouldn’t be interested in selling this house, would you? Call me. Thanks.”
I’m going to do this as a Courier font size eighteen. I’ll make it bold. This postcard costs $0.60. You can put another picture of something that arouses their curiosity. You can add that picture there and then you put their recipient’s address. You can go to the county records and get the name and address of the owner, and you put it right there. Proof it and it will add to the cart. If your VA is doing twenty or 30 of these, it adds it to a cart and you can do all of them at once. You can do this as a letter or as a postcard. The reason I said at the beginning that you need to have credits in Click2Mail is that they have a minimum of $2 charge. If you have prepaid credits in Click2Mail, they don’t require that. You can go to Missouri CaseNet, your VA can go and they can look for all of the evictions that are going on in Missouri.
I’m sure Texas has something like this. I could go to St. Louis County and I can pick a certain day of the week and then it looks for all the evictions in those seven days. Once a week or once a day, your VA could go in here and some of these are judgments like a breach of contract, landlord actions. That’s an eviction. This is an apartment complex. If you wanted to, you could send a letter to the apartment owners. There are 68 pages of crazy stuff. This company, Revi Rentals LLC, is doing three evictions on these tenants. Here’s an eviction from the plaintiff. The owner is doing the lawsuit. He may be an attorney, but here is the defendant. The defendant is the tenant that’s being evicted. I have their address.
I can send two letters. I can send a letter to the plaintiff or I can send a letter to the owner of this property at 65 Alpha Drive in Fluorescent and say, “I can see you’re going through an eviction right now. I’m sorry to hear that. If you’d like to sell this property and get it off your hands, I’ll buy it right now as is with the tenant in there. Call me and we’ll talk.” Your VA can do all of this. They can go and get that address. I’m going to get a Google map of this property, Google Street View. My VA can get a picture of the house. I got to pick and I can put that picture on the postcard or letter, “Is this your house? Are these your tenants that you’re evicting? I’d like to buy it.” I can go into the county records. I use PropStream sometimes to get property data. I can get there the address of the owner.By overwhelming the market with your marketing, you can successfully get leads. Click To Tweet
The property has been listed at one time on the MLS. I could use this picture. The owner is YETI Holdings. They’re out of Denver, Colorado. They’re going through an eviction. As soon as that hits the court records, your VA is sending them a letter with a picture of their house saying something along the lines of, “Are you tired of being a landlord? Are you tired of evicting tenants? If you’d like to sell this house right now, we’ll take it as is with the tenant in it. Give me a call.” He gets this letter or postcard with a picture of his house the week that he’s going through the eviction. Do you think maybe he might be motivated to want to sell you something?
One thing I would look for, it doesn’t happen often enough, but it’s when the last name of the plaintiff has the same last name as the person that’s being evicted, which means it’s a family member and it’s been heated. It’s been very stressful. A lot of times, I’ll buy those houses with the guy in it because the relative doesn’t want to go through the heartbreak of doing all this stuff. They’ll say, “Screw it. I’ll sell the house with him. It won’t be my problem anymore.” This guy’s going to be the one to put them on the street, not me. I would be looking for matching names for sure.
You can also go into court records and get divorces. You can get judgments. If somebody is getting a judgment for a $500 Target credit card that they’ve not paid yet, do you think they might have some financial difficulties? They might want to sell their house, which is interesting too. There is this house. The plaintiff is in Eden Prairie, Minnesota. This property owner is in Denver, Colorado. Maybe this is the property management company that’s managing it from Minnesota. The attorneys are in Missouri. One thing you could do is you could send a letter to this person, Beth Wampler. You could send a letter to the attorney.
The letter to the attorney could be, “I understand and I see that you’re working with some clients and doing some evictions. If you have any clients that would like to sell their properties and be done with them, please call me. I’d even like to buy this house. Let me know if there’s anything that I can do to help you.” I would also send a letter to the owner of the property of the defendant. Your VA can do all of this for you from a computer from the Philippines. They can get a picture of the house, do something silly like this. They can go to Click2Mail, send it as a letter or as a postcard and it prints the same day. I’m going to click proceed to checkout. I’m going to do user credit and it cost $0.64 to send that postcard.
Maybe, in the beginning, they need to, but a lot of people are going to say, “That has to be my phone number. I have to take those calls.” I know you’re not doing that because you’re way too free. What phone number are you putting in there and where’s that call going?
I have a CRM called REI Simple. It’s a CRM that I white-labeled from FreedomSoft. When I’m doing a campaign, I’ll create a new campaign and I’ll get a unique phone number for that campaign. I have certain lease options in St. Louis. If I’m doing a direct mail campaign, I’ll get a new phone number. It’s $4.00 a month. Every call that comes into that number will be automatically assigned to that campaign. From there, we can manage the lead. If it’s direct mail, there are a couple of different ways you can do it. I’ll make sure every different campaign of my direct mail has its own unique phone number so I know where the lead came from. It automatically puts it into my CRM. I can see the statuses of all my leads. I can associate a phone number with that campaign. REI Simple will record the inbound and outbound phone calls. I can send and receive text messages to the sellers as well. We use SMS a lot with texting the sellers. If we called and we got a voicemail, we send them a text saying, “I called you and left a voicemail.” We can also put them into an auto responder drip sequence where they get text messages and emails from us.
The other cool thing about this, let me give you an example of one of our leads. This was a property I was messing around within a little town in Hermann, Missouri. I sent the seller a text message, “I saw your property at 402 Stark Boulevard in Hermann on Zillow. You wouldn’t be open to leasing it for a year and then selling it, would you? Thanks, Joe.” They sent me a text back and said, “Thanks for your note. That’s not our current plan, but I’ll keep your info if in case that changes.” I went and I sent them a letter. I went to generate a document and I created a letter. It sent to the owner, “Dear Catherine, I saw your house on Zillow. I’m an investor looking for more properties. You wouldn’t be interested, maybe leasing it for a year and then selling it. Would you give me a call?” Remember I was telling you about Click2Mail Email-to-Mail? I can click a mail template called Email-to-Mail and I can type in bot and it’ll be there.
If I click send an email, it’s attached that letter and it’s put the information in that subject line. It’s got the owner’s name, property mailing address, property mailing, city, state, zip. Because it’s coming from a pre-approved email address to a specific Click2Mail email, Click2Mail will send that letter first-class to that seller. All I did was click a few buttons. The other cool thing about REI Simple the way I’d do it, there’s a button that says “Find owner.” When I click that, it pulls up the owner’s information. I get their name and their mailing address. I’m not trying to sell my CRM, but there are many simple things that the VA can do.
Do you have the CRM for sale?
I only sell it to my students who buy my course. If you’re interested in getting it on your own, you can go get it from FreedomSoft.
You’d done a lot on that modification to that.
I’ve customized it for lease options because that’s my thing. I teach lease options.
Do I have to do the whole process of what you said? What’s that course called?
The name of my course is Simple Lease Options.
For people who don’t do lease options but still need leads, is there a way they can benefit from all of that computer moves that you did with all those different resources tied together?
I’ve taught it and showed it before. I’ve been thinking about creating a little $97 course, teaching people how to do what I did.
I would love for you to do that. When you say, “I was thinking about making a little simple course,” there is no simple course. They take a lot of work.
That’s not a bad idea. Let me think about that, Mitch.
I would love to help you promote that too because of what I have learned. You make it look easy because you’ve done it so much. You’ve got to have the 1, 2, 3 steps for all of us until we can figure it out and make it a routine.
Some of you reading and you’re like, “I have no idea what he did.” Share this episode. Give it to some high school kid and say, “Look at what Joe did here. I want you to figure out how to do this for me.” You can go to Upwork and find somebody that’s good with spreadsheets or databases and say, “Watch what he did there and do it for me.” You find somebody that can do it. I think that’s a good idea, Mitch. I will create a little simple $97 course that teaches people how to do marketing like that. I think it’ll be good. I think people will appreciate that. It is pretty simple.
You come from a technology background. It could use some simplification for people not as savvy and tech like you, but I get the concept right away, the concept is brilliant. It’s easy to get your head around that. Could you imagine what you’re driving for dollars would be like on a day? At the end of the day, you’ve got 100 letters going out. As you’re going, the VA is figuring out each house and even driving for dollars is gone extinct because of the amount of data that you can get just on the computer. There’s something to be said for getting out there and getting in your neighborhoods. Especially when you’re new, getting the feel of all these neighborhoods and calling on the houses across the street for sale and becoming an expert in your territory. Many of the people we’re talking to are brand new or haven’t even bought one house yet. It does a lot of good to get out there and immerse yourself in your market. See what’s going on, where the pockets are, what zip codes and what they look like and they smell like.
I had a friend named Heim, a super cool guy. He’s from Israel. He was a virtual wholesaler when I was talking to him. He was doing this thing where he had an army of VAs, about four or five of them. Each of them would send 100 emails to realtors every day in about three different markets. Not sending a contract, but sending an email to a realtor saying, “I saw this property you had that’s been on the market for 65 days. Would your client maybe be except something in this price range?” They were sending emails with making offers at 65% to 75% of lease price. He is consistently doing deals from that. There are many things you could get virtual assistants to do for you, to find deals for you. You’ve got to be a little creative. It’s a numbers game. You just overwhelm the market with your marketing. You’re going to do deals. You’re going to get leads.
You have to overwhelm the market and you have to get someone doing it for you. I always tell everyone, they asked me, “What’s the number one thing?” I said, “It’s not one thing. It’s several things. The top two things are you have to be consistent. It has to happen every day.” You have to be fast because it’s competitive out there. When someone raises their hand and it shows an interest, you got to go get the contract. Joe has been around a long time and he knows how to make money. We were going to talk about getting over that fear of doing deals outside your immediate market in another state because that’s been a big fear of mine. I did 2,400 houses in my own town, but I have a big town also. I also have a town that has affordable housing.
There are people in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Nevada and other places that it’s not conducive to do certain strategies in that area. You have wholesaling and lease options. We’re going to give you a free copy of a book called Wholesaling Lease Options. I want you to go to REInvestorSummit.com/McCall. Get your free copy of Wholesaling Lease Options. Also, check out his Wholesaling Lease Options course. He also has a course out there called The Z-Code, which he and a friend perfected how to find motivated sellers on Zillow. That’s a $97 little junket here and there. How many deals do you have to do to get back $97? It is just a fraction of a deal. Check out what’s over there on the website. If you want to learn more about this guy, he’s been around a long time and he’s a genius at what he does. I don’t use that word lightly. I guess you have your 10,000 hours in.
It’s fun and I enjoyed it. I love hanging out with people like Mitch Stephen, who every time he talked to him, he was like, “I did a 100 deals this month, it’s something crazy.”
Maybe a year or so. I don’t do 100 deals a month. I’m also been around a long time too and have my scars and have my 10,000-plus hours in. We’re probably at around 50,000 to 100,000 hours.
I never counted my hours. That would be an interesting activity.
I don’t even know how you do that. Michener said, “The master in the art of living knows not if he’s working or playing. To him, he’s always doing both.” You couldn’t separate my play from my work about 50% of the time. Am I working or am I having fun talking to you? I’m having fun. I would talk to you whether there was a show or not about all this stuff. That’s how I’m wired. I’ve started talking about real estate several years ago and I haven’t stopped.
I’m only a few years into it, Mitch. I’m hoping that I’m as passionate and energetic as you are when I hit your mark.
You did it a lot more effectively than I did. I spent the first ten years banging my head against brick walls. You guys are way ahead of me. Some of us take a little longer. Some of us take a little less long. I want to thank everybody out there for stopping by and it gets you some Joe McCall. Please follow up REInvestorSummit.com/McCall. Get a free copy of his book Wholesaling Lease Options. Check out The Z-Code, how you find motivated sellers on Zillow. I appreciate you. It’s wonderful the conversation we had, but it wasn’t nearly what we were going to talk about. I do want to talk about your Wholesaling Lease Options strategy course.
I think this was helpful.
It was very enlightening. Thank you very much.
- Easy Letter Sender
About Joe McCall
Joe has been doing deals virtually in multiple markets for over 10 years.
He also has one of the most popular, longest-running, podcasts called, “Real Estate Investing Mastery”