The Ultimate Guide to Getting Deals From Real Estate Attorneys
Episode #11 of Estate Professionals Mastermind Podcast
Why do attorneys send referrals to some real estate professionals and not others? In this answer, we look at the top reasons real estate agents and investors have successfully earned referral relationships with probate and estate attorneys
Summary: Chad and Anton discuss why you shouldn’t feel intimidated by probate attorneys, and instead be encouraged to network with them. Ronald shares his success story for landing his first attorney referral, and then quickly winning several more attorney relationships! Chad breaks down how to market to pre-probate leads in a way that wins both consumer and B2B relationships. Chad and the Masterminds brainstorm a hybrid B2B and SOI marketing campaign that can bring high networth individuals and attorneys together for estate planning, while giving you favorable positioning. The masterminds share their unique stories of how they leverage podcasts, affiliate memberships with local bar associations, and in-person court-room presence to build their brand as the expert in their markets
Podcast Streams and Download: Ultimate Guide to Attorney Referrals | Real Estate Pros Share Why Attorneys Send THEM Deals #11 (buzzsprout.com)
Video: Watch On YouTube
Time Stamps (YouTube Links):
00:47 Anton Lands His First Appointment With A Probate Attorney
02:47 Ronald Gets His First Attorney Referral, then Three More!!
5:33 How to Market to Pre-Probate Leads: Facebook Ads, Scripts, and Attorney Leads
12:48 Bringing High Networth Clients to Attorney Prospects
16:14 Co-Branding with Estate Planning Attorneys for Mail Marketing
20:12 Why Don’t More People Have A Financial Plan, Living Trust, Term Life Policy?
25:13 I Have 5 Attorneys Interested In Working With Me; How do I interview/Vet Them?
30:01 Why I Entered (and Re-Entered!) the Probate Niche
31:16 B2B and Consumer Marketing With Real Estate Podcasts
36:11 Becoming an Affiliate Member of the Local Bar Association, Estate Planning Councils
38:36 How To Become The Local Probate Real Estate Expert
42:33 How to Respond to: “Who Are You and What Do You Do?”
45:18 How to Commit To Getting Started and Building Momentum
52:34 Figuring Out The Best Acquisition and Disposition Strategy
1:02:51 COVID Court Re-Openings and Digital Evolutions Across The Country
1:10:23 Community Bank Loans: Loan to Cost vs. Loan to Value (LTC vs LTV)
- Ask The Expert with Chris Prefontaine: Creative Real Estate Investing – Probate Mastery
- Estate Professionals Mastermind Group (Facebook)
- Chad Corbett’s YouTube Channel
- Ending The Real Estate Feast Or Famine Cycle and Finding Financial Freedom Through Real Estate – Probate Mastery
Okay, welcome everybody to the weekly probate mastery group coaching call. We talk about creative financing here a lot, because I haven’t taken the time to actually build out a course I recommend Chris Prefontaine. He has a book called real estate on your terms, an organization called smart real estate coach.
And we did a podcast on Friday so if you guys haven’t had a chance to listen to that Chris is somebody that I would support you learning from and having as a mentor, I know a lot of folks are interested in it but don’t get into it because they have a lack of support. Check out that conversation. Chris and I are going to be doing more in the future. And along those lines, it opens up so much more opportunity for service and revenue if you have the strategy.
So does anyone need help, want to share a win, any challenges you’re having any questions about the course?
Anton Lands His First Appointment With A Probate Attorney
I got a really small one. Yesterday I went to a meeting and I ended up making an acquaintance of my very first probate attorney. So I was super, super excited about that. Set an appointment with him to sit down for an hour and just see specifically how the probate process works in my county here.
Via phone call. No, we were at a meeting. We were at a totally unrelated meeting. He did a presentation on a different topic. And then he said, by the way, I’m a probate attorney, so it was really cool. Great. So is that coming up soon or they call me, he said he’s about a month or so out. There have been some changes in his firm I looked them up and they’re really highly reviewed. And so just excited. Cause it’s my first one. That’s always been one of the things that I’ve been somewhat intimidated by, I know you’ve taught us and talk to us about how to approach the attorneys.
It’s been one of those things where I’ve been somewhat nervous to talk to a random attorney but this one was pretty smooth because it was something else we had in common. And so then we chat it up a little afterward.
Yeah. Just keep in mind that when you meet with them and any other attorney you meet with, they’re just a small business owner that had all the same problems you do. They have bigger problems though. They have anti-solicitation laws. So not only are they unemployed every morning, they can’t market directly the way we can.
So keep those things in mind. It doesn’t have to just be a conversation about what you and I can do together to help just families and probate. I was like, how can I help him find the loopholes to market his firm, his estate planning services, his trust services, things like that. So remember those value points, like you can help him well, beyond the scope of a list of people you have that are already in probate.
Everyone you have contact with should have a trust, right? For the most part, right? Your buyers, everyone on your buyers’ list. If they don’t have an asset protection trust, and they’re a real estate investor, they have tons of exposure. They’ve never even thought about it. Start getting those guys over to him for referrals and really impress him.
We’re all just small business owners, so don’t let it intimidate you. Good job on capitalizing on the opportunity to add a simple introduction and turn it into a meeting.
Ronald Gets His First Attorney Referral, then Three More!!
[00:02:47]Yeah, go ahead. I have a small win and a challenge I’d like to talk about. I’ll start with a win first. My partner and I have been doing this for four months, and we’ve got the website up and we’re doing some things. I got my first referral from an attorney here in my city, but the property actually was in my partner’s city.
So she’s doing most of the work and we’re going to split the deal. So that listing should be signed this week or next getting all the personal property dealt with and all of that. Now, was that an attorney relationship you deliberately went and got, or someone you already knew or? Yeah, so because of this particular case, the attorney is the wife and I noticed on their website that the husband was their director of marketing.
And so I approached him thinking, we might be able to connect better initially And sure enough, he, of course, has more time to deal with those kinds of things than she does. So that’s where we started. So they referred over a new family member. This lady’s son just married their daughter.
So they’re newly in-laws. So we’re taking care of that case. I’m excited about that. Then another attorney contacted me. That first attorney only likes to do informal probates. She doesn’t like to do formal probates or supervised probates. She doesn’t it’s too emotionally upsetting.
So I had a case where I thought that we might need to go to court. And so I asked her husband. who should they refer me to, for that kind of thing? And she referred me to two attorneys. I began conversations with them. He saw my website really liked what we do.
And because there’s a lot of snowbirds coming in and out. Think that he’ll be able to send me a lot of folks. And so we’re going to have lunch on Thursday. I’m excited to look forward to that. And then just yesterday, I got a person who needs an attorney because his sister is the trustee and he doesn’t think that she’s doing things right.
And I told him, you need to consult with an attorney. And he goes, oh, that’d be great. And then, also I need to trust, perfect. I’m able to refer him over yesterday to the guy I’m going to meet with on Thursday and that doesn’t hurt. Yeah. So I’m excited about that. So things were starting to fall into place on those two things.
Now, my challenge let me tell ya, I’ve got, I’ve been buying leads from all the leads in my partner’s city because they’re available. They’re in my city. They’re not because there are already three people buying leads. I’m in the Phoenix area. I had a feeling you might be. So you mentioned snowbirds, Phoenix, it’s competitive.
It’s almost always sold out on, on to their limits, but I do want to commend you for hitting the attorneys and Phoenix. Cause most people sit around and wait for leads to show up instead of entering the niche and you found the way in anyway. So good job on that. Thanks. I appreciate that.
How to Market to Pre-Probate Leads: Facebook Ads, Scripts, and Attorney Leads
[00:05:33]Anyway, let me describe the situation here because Phoenix is so competitive. We have this is really the wholesale capital of the universe here, Phoenix. So I started buying leads from other folks and I’m buying probate leads and pre probate leads on the probate leads. It’s when I get ahold of somebody they say to me listen, bud, you’re too late.
I closed on that house three weeks ago. And this was a new lead coming to me. That’s how fast things are going out here. And when I get the pre-probate leads, I’m having a difficult time making contact with the family, much less the PR or the trustee. So do you have any advice for me? So pre probate is becoming, it’s a marketing term.
Right now, if you don’t have trust, you’re in pre probate, aren’t you the challenge with it is so most family members, most decedents don’t even have a will. So state law is going to say someone needs to be the administrator because there is no executor.
Right? And then the family has to have a discussion. They have to decide who that is, agree on, who that is, then petition the court. Then they get appointed and they get the letters, right? When I was with all the leads, when we first started it, and I was looking at data across the country all the time, there’s a median of 68 days from the date of death until the date of probate filing.
Now that’s just an observation. There are some that file the next day, some that wait five, six years, But what that tells me and in my personal experience, working in the markets that I have with the clients, I have most folks need a couple of months to process things before they’re in the state of mind to think about, alright let’s deal with the business side of this.
So for me, it’s one of those lists that direct prospecting is always going to be extremely challenging. You’re going to risk your reputation. You’re going to risk with consumers, but also with attorneys, because if you’re calling the wrong person or you’re calling too soon they perceive that as predatory or, something outside of their values.
And they’re reporting that back to the attorneys in your market or to, other investors or agents or investors, when they are ready, then you can actually muddy the water for yourself. I’m not a big fan of it. However, things like Facebook make it a lot easier to indirectly direct the market.
If that makes sense. So what I would recommend with pre probate rather than getting beat up on the phones, I would recommend uploading your list. So you have phone numbers, addresses names, you have all that, right? For the yes. I mean of the possible family members. I do have a way to skip, trace the decedents to get their family members.
Yes. Okay, so that the best way and some data providers will give you that. They’ll say, we think these are the possible heirs. If you have that information you can take that uploaded into a custom audience on Facebook and run targeted ads, that’s some, but not Hey, I know somebody just passed away more.
So these many families go through this American county every year where a service that helps families and life transition, things like that. It’s highly targeted marketing, but it looks like a more generic message. So they’re not freaked out and feeling like they’re getting targeted because their uncle Larry died.
And, they live within three miles of his house. So I see a lot of folks really struggle with the new pre probate stuff. Just because what do you say when this person is not mentally ready to move forward? What do you say? Like how do I pressure you into forcing your family to hurry up and make these decisions?
So I can pay my bills. With probate, it’s a signal flare, right? So they go to the courthouse, they file probate and they’re saying, Hey guys we know we need to deal with this and that two months of processing in there as critical. So what I recommend for anyone marketing pre-book pre probate is that it’s in a nurturing stage.
It’s not, a closing stage. So introduce your service as I think it was last week, we talked about the social enterprise letter and I actually wrote that for Colorado Springs, which is a super competitive market, but present your service as a social enterprise in the community and be a resource for anything and everything and preparing for the life transition.
The reason we say, build a team and be able to do all, have all those people that can do all those things and start to market those strong points about what your offer is, how you help families. And then as you get testimonials, you can start to put testimonials in there. My mother passed and, Ronald’s team was right there every step of the way from practically right after the funeral, up until we’d completely closed out the estate.
And you can start to use those things like that. So they start to identify with other people in that situation. But as far as my advice on the phones with pre probate, it’s a tough row to hoe because you don’t know who the decision-maker is and neither do they, and you don’t know what to say to them because you don’t know if they’re going to be a decision-maker.
A lot of them don’t even know their heirs. Now we are working on some things in the background that will help do some of this work for you. generate lists, do skip tracing, start to rank them based on kind of the proximity to the decedent. So we minimize the risk of reputational damage.
And that’s something that’s not exactly simple, and we have to test and work out and proof out before we give it to you guys. So anyway, that’s my advice on the pre probate. On the probate or you’re like, some people are proactive, right? I always, and this is anecdotal, but in my experience, it seems like 25% of families are proactive.
There was a will. They knew exactly what they were going to. They had time. It wasn’t the death. Wasn’t a surprise. They got the house on the market. They sold it two years prior to death because they were hoping to qualify for Medicaid and not have that person’s net worth get eaten up the other 20, another 25%.
Just absolutely put their head in the sand and don’t do anything. They act like it’s not happening. Another 25%, they’ll. Procrastinate for a bit, then they realize, okay, let’s just do this. And then they power through it and move through it. And they don’t really need anybody’s help. And the other 25% will never speak to.
But, within those, there’s, four to 6% of every list that will actually need our help at some point through the process. If you’re coming up late on, some of them just learn as much as you can, if you’re having a good conversation. If you’ve got a dialogue with them, they’re like, oh listen, help me understand.
We try to reach out to every family in Maricopa to make them aware that our service exists in the community. Help me understand, like where were you guys? Three weeks ago? Who contacted? You may turn it into competitive competition research, right? Learn who got to them in the, how. And like then learn, how can I get for, upstream of that and be in this conversation earlier, what you may find is your data providers reporting late and that market that, they may be me, seasoning the data and reporting it late.
But also you may find that you’re just hitting some of those more, that 25% that are really put together and proactive. And they have the house on the market before mom passed away, which is common.
All right. This isn’t always, it’s not supposed to be the Chad show. If anyone has a differing opinion on pre probate or experience, if it’s where you have something that’s working for you, please step up and share. It’s don’t hold back. If you don’t agree with me, let’s hear your opinion.
Bringing High Net-worth Clients to Attorney Prospects
[00:12:48]Chad. I have a question if you don’t mind. I’m in the middle of an I found a condo through probate marketing. In the end, they could get more money for it by selling it outright. So I’m also an agent. So I listed it and sold it in that process. I actually did a lot of work on the condo.
I have a very good relationship with the owner. I also met a great probate attorney and a great closing attorney and they happened to be cousins. My plan is to, is once we get closer to closing is to meet with the probate attorney. what would your strategy be to meet with that person and try to build a relationship for more, work?
Sure. How many past clients do you have Dan, like buyers you represented. Oh, four or five, I’m new to that. I was a flipper for the most part and a tech guy for 30 years, I got too old. They got rid of me. Perfect. So as a flipper and as a tech guy, you also had exposure to high net worth individuals, right?
Correct. So one of the strongest things you can do to really create a lot of momentum early in an attorney relationship is bring them high net worth individuals who do not have an estate plan. And like you’re serving those high net worth individuals because they’re foolish, they have exposure. And that the average probate costs five to 8%.
And if you’re a high net worth individual, that’s a big number. And if you’re a high net worth individual, it’s either the social dynamics can get muddy yet get the sloppy way faster. Because there’s more for people to fight over. Especially those people, if you play to their ego and said, listen, man, I know you’ve been investing in real estate or writing code for 20 years.
And one of the things that I’ve been doing recently as I’ve found myself, helping families who are in probate and I’ve, I took a real close look at my own estate and here’s what I did. I’ve set up a revocable living trust so that my family is taken care of and the second I die. It just becomes a directive. And the trustee knows what to do. And my beneficiaries know that they’re covered and they don’t have to struggle through this. It’s, you can tell me to shut up if you want, but I really think that anyone that I know that has more than a half, a million dollars to protect really should have a living trust.
So I’m offering my sphere of influence and my past clients, every one of them I’m offering them an hour with our legal team to at least get their questions answered and see if it’s the right fit. Would you like to sit down with my attorney? So that conversation can happen in email and text messages and a phone campaign and dinner conversation.
But anyone you’ve served as a client and put into an asset, chances are they don’t have a living trust. There’s a 95% chance. They don’t have a living trust. If they pass away it’s most likely going to be probated and they will, the fees and legal fees and administration fees will eat up a pretty good chunk of that.
So almost everybody, in your professional life should have a living trust. Most of them don’t. California. It’s very prevalent. The rest of the country. It’s not across the country. It’s now only 5% of individuals have a living trust. So that’s one way is, his job is to like a probate attorney or an estate planning attorney, or it’s usually synonymous.
And they typically make more money on estate planning because they can work a couple of days, one meeting and then one day of structuring it and they can be done with that and make five, two to $10,000 or on probate, it drags on for months or years and they might make the same money. They may make more, but.
Co-Branding with Estate Planning Attorneys for Mail Marketing
[00:16:14] It’s easier business, the challenge for them. And refer back to what we first talked about is helping you remember. They’re just small business owners. Their challenge is they’re not allowed to directly solicit so they can broadcast market. They can do seminars, they can have Facebook groups, they can do general marketing, but not targeted direct marketing.
You are a loophole for that. So you can become a way for them to enclose a second page, and every letter that you mail or you can direct people to them from your sphere of influence your buyer’s list, your, your past buddies and technology, whatever that is the second, the other thing.
And I mentioned there, like closing something in the letter. Yeah. The other thing that I often challenged people to do, sit down with that attorney and say, Hey, listen, I’ve noticed that of all the people going through probate every month, about 20% of them don’t have an attorney or it’s pro se or pro per depending on what stage they’re in.
But we pretty much know that’s usually not a good idea. So I think I figured something out what I can help your firm. What if every, letter that I send out, we enclose a second page. That’s actually a checklist. And it starts with the moment that, that that’d be seen, passes away up until probate is fully closed out and every single little line item that has to be managed and done and checked.
What does make the checklist, anything that’s legal that would fall within your scope? Is red, anything that’s non-legal that would fall within my scope, or the family scope is a different color. It’s blue. And at the bottom of that, that your farm name and your phone number. So we will put that in the hands of each and every family going through probate on the very first letter, we send early in the process so they can see what they don’t, they don’t know what they don’t know.
So then when they’re, when they decide they need help from that checklist, they’re either going to call me or call you. So could I have just 40 minutes of your time so we can sit down and, get this paper out, then I’ll get my designer to turn it into something that’s an attractive marketing piece and we’ll include it in every letter going forward?
So what you’ve offered him as a chance to you, you offered him a loophole to the anti-solicitation laws that won’t allow him to direct market. You’ve allowed him to scale his firm. And what have you asked for? Other than his help creating a checklist for his own benefit. You’re not asking for referrals right now, you’re earning them.
So those are the two things like taking them referrals or helping them help create a path to referrals. Those are the two ways to build lasting deep relationships with attorneys that actually do value the relationship. You’re not just a realtor back to Rosie’s conversation last week.
Yeah. That makes sense that, that actually makes a lot of sense. Do you think it’s okay to include that sheet with my initial probate letter to someone? Absolutely. Some of them are, some of them are going to have an attorney. And if that attorney wants to put some sort of disclaimer on there, regardless, he’s not soliciting them for business, you are saying one of our team members provided this checklist for your benefit.
You’re not, it’s not a direct solicitation of, you’re in probate and you don’t have an attorney. You’re screwed. Call him at call us. Now that’s not the message. This is a valuable piece. So it’s, it’s likely that if they decide that they are going to hire counsel, they’ll look at the bottom of the page and go, this was prepared, generously prepared for Dan by attorney John DOE and they’ll think why not call John though?
He’s the one that gave me this nice checklist that made me realize there was a problem. So I wouldn’t hesitate to put it in every letter. Because pray those principles present everywhere, just because someone has a law license doesn’t mean they’re good at it. So a lot of people won’t finish with the probate attorney they begin with because they’re just not getting it done.
They’re dragging it out. They’re unresponsive. So some of those folks are going to be changing attorneys. They’re not going to be pleased with the one they chose. That’s, that, that piece is valuable in many ways.
Why Don’t More People Have A Financial Plan, Living Trust, Term Life Policy?
[00:20:12]Okay, great. I’m shocked by the number of guys that I used to work with who made big money, I made okay money. These guys made big money. No plans like no, no trust, no nothing welcome to America, man. Yeah. They’re brilliant at what they do. But they have no idea how to manage their money or their state. It’s I’m just overwhelmed by how that hole is there in so many smart people’s lives. I’m going to turn the light on you.
Do you have a living trust? Dan? I do. I do. And I have ones for, I trust for my kids as well. Do you have, that’s amazing by the way. Very few people can answer yes to that. Do you have a long-term care plan in place, like for a health transitions that I don’t have? No. Those are other things.
So if you’re a high net worth, I would encourage you to look into index universal life policy. There, they call it a rich man’s Roth. Like it’s a really good way to invest. Just like it’s a Roth IRA. The one I have was originally through Minnesota life it’s through security, and financial bought out that division, but it’s an index universal life.
It’s index to the S and P 500, but not invested in the S and P. So you have a 0% stop-out and the event of a correction, a market correction, but there’s no ceiling. If the market roars it indexes every two months. So you’re essentially, you’re paying into just like you’re paying into a 401k and on the way out, the money is tax free.
It’s traded just like a Roth, but if you don’t have all of the requirements that you have now, That’s the investment thought of it. It also has obviously a death benefit. It’s a whole life policy, which isn’t that interesting to me, the reason I chose it over different instruments is you can attach your riders to it really affordably.
You can get long-term long-term care insurance. Like I think mine, I set it up when I was 35, but my I think it’s gets $11,000 a month as well. What I have and the long-term care insurance, but also has chronic illness, accelerators and terminal illness accelerators. So if I’m diagnosed with cancer, I cash on the death benefit bucket list money, and, do whatever I want.
So it’s a really neat tool in that planning phase. You’ve already done the, the basic thing you might consider to get a more affordable premium for long-term care. You might consider doing that through something like an index universal life policy. Yeah. I’ve heard you talk about that in the past.
I don’t make every meeting, but I try to but I’ll definitely dig into that. I appreciate it. Yeah. And if you need a referral, let me know. And I’ve a couple of guys that do those nationally. I don’t make anything from it. I don’t want to. But I do think they’re really good vehicles for folks that, take, if you’ve, if taking, having a plan is important to you, it’s a good step.
And Martha, I think I heard you speak up. I see your hand now you had something. Yeah. Did I I heard you tell him, recommend a trust, please don’t do that in some areas with a really strict legal community, you could be accused of practicing law. So I would recommend nobody ever has a living trust.
That’s crazy talk. Any kind of trust, whatever, anything time you recommend doing something that’s actually created by an attorney just, I would say, have you thought of. If you haven’t, I have a couple of attorneys I could recommend you talk to because that might be an idea for you. So you’re just talking about the language he used.
Martha, I’m talking about the language and the language gets you in trouble. I used to work with attorneys. Yeah. But the other thing is there are attorneys that do not have good estate plans too. I’ve seen them go through probate. Yes. Yeah, that’s good. That’s good advice. I may overshare with you guys. I would talk to you like I would one of my friends or mastermind members, but the point is you can figure out your language around that people shouldn’t be progressing through life blindly without a plan.
As you learned in the probate mastery course, 78.8% of senior citizens. Their only plan is to die in their home and only 20% of them do the rest are surprised and their family has a lot of urgency because there’s a lack of liquidity and no plan. So anything we can do, especially with our high net worth clients and sphere of influence any way we can nudge them toward better planning.
We know as a good thing, I think so, but yes. Thanks for that input, Martha, you are right. I’ve. Maybe give less legal, less advice. you know, my background, I do. That’s exactly what I’m coming from because I’ve seen it. I know it. Yep. You have to preface your call with, none of this makes any sense.
This is just my opinion, right? Let’s back up and guys rewind. Hi, my name’s Chad Corban. I’m a West Virginia farm boy that doesn’t have any money and really doesn’t. You should take none of my advice. Okay. Let’s start it with that each week. And you’re good. Yeah. Cool. Katt We need to get that little, make a be real so you can splice that into every one of these.
All right. Next. We’ll got some new faces here today. Anybody wanna introduce yourself? Anything, any questions you have?
I Have 5 Attorneys Interested In Working With Me; How do I interview/Vet Them?
[00:25:13]Hey, Jen, Jonathan here got a question for you. I was involved a while back and now I’m getting back into it just started pulling leads in county and Frederick, Maryland. And I’m curious I’m getting a lot of traction getting in front of attorneys.
Do you have any principles or recommendations for how many attorneys you initially start to have this conversation with? Because right now I’ve got about five on the books for this next week. That’s amazing, man. Now my issue is I need to know how to pick the best ones.
I would like to have them get involved with ideas like checklists and I run a podcast on probate. So that’s been helpful to get in the front door as well. So I’m curious if you have any thoughts on that as you’re getting into a new county, how many attorneys would you recommend or as helpful to work with?
there’s one gentleman that I coached in San Diego. He had one attorney and he did a hundred deals over 10 years. So he did about 10 deals a year. Inbound didn’t do anything to nurture the relationship. He just did a good job. And he’s made millions of dollars off of that. So one can be enough. But what I would do say that your filter should probably be more based on your personal values and your business values, the ones that you like associating with you, like talking to you, like working with them, they do what they say. They, the ones that feel best to work with should get your priority.
They’re not all going to be created equal of those five. You’ll probably end up cutting two because they don’t return your emails or they’re never in their office or their staff as unprofessional, or they don’t take as much time. So I would recommend it, it’s definitely quality over quantity in my opinion.
Because you’d be better served to do a really good job and impressing the hell out of three, really good probate attorneys in your area. Then you would try to connect with 10. So like some of the ideas we shared, like creating the checklist or going through your sphere of influence or buyer’s book, whoever, finding high net worth individuals that don’t have estate plans, you could spread that around two or three attorneys and bring them five each versus going to 50 attorneys and giving them one each you’re probably gonna impress them even more.
And chances are, they’ll close, at least one of those, three or four that you give them. But I don’t think there’s too many, if you’re getting a lot of inbound business, you just, the answer there is fine. Hire some admins and scale up your internal team so you can serve more attorneys.
And then handle those referrals. The fact that you have five is amazing, man, most people will never get there. I challenge people daily. I’m like, just, this, if you’re marketing, not working, you’re trying everything. You’re feeling frustrated and go to the attorneys.
It’s a lot easier if you’re providing real value, it can be an easier way to get started in this space. So the fact that you have five conversations set up speaks volumes, so good job there. That’s great. And Jonathan, if you have anything you would like to share, you could hear a response directly from a probate attorney, but he just showed up.
I’m not sure he came into the conversation late, so I might be right there at the end. So it was a how many attorneys, how should I focus on not to dilute my service or, I’m doing what you’re suggesting, Chad, right? Where I’ve got past clients. I also have a pretty big network of high-net-worth individuals.
I’m going to start making those calls have already set one of the attorneys that I’m meeting with next week, upon a referral through the calls I made the past seven days, but I don’t want to over promise and under deliver. That’s my concern. If I go in, Hey, we, you’re a small business owner. You wake up unemployed every morning, and then I’m saying, I can give you business, but I don’t give them business.
That’s my concern right now. And I don’t want to do that cause I know I’ll, I will erode the reputation that I have there locally. And I don’t want to do that. With these five, just be really honest with them, right? Like attorneys are, they’re going to appreciate transparency and integrity and importance, or I hope, and equity is important to them.
So I would open that conversation by saying, let’s not, I’m just getting started with this. I’ve got a lot of ideas that I’m just beginning to implement. One of my goals is to make sure I have the right legal team, the right legal professionals on my team, because one of the things I’m doing, I’m actually running a campaign to every high net worth individual in my personal network, personal and professional network, to try to find the ones that you know, I’ve been doing this long enough.
I understand. I now see that everybody really should have long-term care and an estate plan. So I’m going to be running a campaign at my cost. And I just, this conversation was really for me to make sure that’s the kind of referrals you want and that you’re the right kind of fit for, for my sphere of influence my clients, my friends, my family.
So thanks for meeting with me. Tell me a little bit more about what you do and they’re going to respect that conversation, even if you don’t have the referrals, if you say I’m about to initiate a campaign at my cost to help grow your firm, how can they be mad at that? Okay. That’s great. That’s great.
Why I Entered (and Re-Entered!) the Probate Niche
[00:30:01]So Jonathan, before we moved down in anyone else, you said you had gone out of the probate niche, but now you’re back. I’m really curious what made you leave and what made you come back and what interval of time was in between there?
Yeah, my really long story short, I was a pastor for 20 years, got into real estate transition. Full-time last January before I did that, I was really involved with you guys pulling out of Northern Virginia. So I was doing that part-time after my day of pastoral ministry was over probate is I’m familiar with, and I’m walking into homes where people have debt.
That’s what I did full time. So I feel at home there, I then came into the business full time, and just the demand that I had servicing sellers with the team I came on. I just didn’t, I didn’t have a choice to not prioritize getting into probate. Now, with where I’m am we built it out in Northern Virginia did well, and now we’re doing it in Maryland.
I just love the probate space. So I’m wanting to do something there and build it out in Maryland with where I am now. And so just getting back into it at this point. Yeah. I love you. I love your choice of language and your honesty. I chose to not prioritize probate, even though you love that. It’s a very honest answer.
B2B and Consumer Marketing With Real Estate Podcasts
[00:31:16] So thanks for sharing that. What exactly are you doing in probate? Are you buying properties and rehabbing them? Are you just what Chad tells us to do? So all of the above kind of, yeah. All of the above.
Yeah. And the one thing that I’ve done that I’ve found helpful before I transitioned out. I started a podcast. It was part, so I could learn part to provide free PR to attorneys, accountants, these professionals. And then it worked out really well. I had some inbound demand from that.
It’s called probate navigated, and then it just became a time issue. I had so much demand coming in from work. I couldn’t make the calls, do the podcast, et cetera. So that’s one of the things that’s also helped me get in the door with these attorneys and other professionals. It’s a value add lead.
It’s free PR for them, and it ends up educating me and others in the process. And it ends up being marketing collateral that I can send to clients via text message. That’s just super easy to do and at no cost other than my time and energy. That’s excellent. You’re probably not scared of doing a podcast or speaking.
I was initially I was terrified. But do it scared, I’m not scared of communicating how to do it for a living for 20 years. So that, that I’m comfortable in, but doing stuff that I’ve never done, podcasts, interviewing attorneys, that stuff. I had no idea what I was doing. So now I’m getting back into it.
I haven’t done it in over a year and a half. I have my first podcast with an attorney here in Maryland on Thursday morning. So that’ll be really good. Yeah. You get, you get a couple of wins under your belt and it really helps you mentally, right? Yeah. I still don’t want to make the calls every day, but I just do it.
So Jonathan Brad had asked, how did you go about getting the meetings with five different attorneys? What was it through direct mail or otherwise? No. So it was part I have one guy who’s connected me with two and then the other three came as a result of making the calls. Hey, we’ve got everything handled great.
Who’s your attorney. I ended up getting in conversations. They tell me who they are and then I reach out directly. I’ve heard more nos than I’ve heard yeses on attorneys. And those are how I got the other three. So I’ve got two of them coming on podcasts and I’m meeting with another one possible. John, what do you think about the podcast idea?
Have you ever been on a podcast with somebody in your market? Yeah, I actually had a podcast myself. Who hasn’t? But and I definitely relate to Jonathan saying it’s so much work. Like I actually had an intern assistant who actually did all the backend stuff that freed me up to focus.
I still had a law for me running everything else. But I ran, I did about 10 episodes on family philanthropy and it was kinda interesting, when the internship was over and it all falls back on my shoulders, I’m like I got too much other stuff to do. Is a ton of work. But again, that, that was also a long time ago before you had Facebook live and all these other great innovations.
It still is a lot of backend work, technical stuff. But once you get in the swing of it, I agree. That is probably the easiest way to get an attorney, a CPA, a banker, or a financial planner to come to talk about it. And then you can start making it interactive with your audience. What are your questions about probate?
What are your questions about trends? Why do this, how did you know? Here’s a question? How do I choose an old age home for my folks in the middle of what we just went through to COVID how do we know what places are saved or places follow best practices and what places are train wrecks. That’s a great idea.
Find an answer on that one. You’re going to have 50,000 people listening in, I’m sure it was the same in every state, but in California in the area, that stuff was. Bad news bears. That was, it was the places with all the undisclosed or hard-to-find safety violations. And that wound up a lot of people getting sick and dying there.
So how do I choose that? I have a guy that I’ve worked with off and on, and he has a placement firm for senior housing and senior living centers where he gets some kind of commission from the places themselves. But he’s like I had to create my own data spreadsheet just to pull the data off the California, relevant government agencies, safety, cause every all that stuff’s hidden.
So there’s one subject funding expert there, an attorney, any other person who does that, a senior relocation person in your market and figure that out. You’ll have people stampeding to that podcast or a video Castro, whatever. Yeah. And John, just to clarify C so a senior relocation and then the other topic was basically how to choose a long-term care facility.
Yeah. There’s a lot of, yeah, so I’m sure it’s the same in every state out there. We have, let’s see, one lady, I talked to who was going to strike up a partnership with when got her real estate license. And I never heard from her again. So she found out what she took, what I did herself. So there’s that, but there are, California is an enormous state with a ton of people.
And so how do you choose one aging-in-place facility versus another? So there are people who, for a fee, they’re either paid by the client or they’re paid by, whatever place they pay, whatever location they place the person with when they get paid some kind of commission to pay their bills.
And so they are an advisor to families only on that subject.
Becoming an Affiliate Member of the Local Bar Association, Estate Planning Councils
[00:36:11] I can’t remember Chad, if it was a podcast, you did keep it on this attorney piece. Have you ever had anybody who sponsored bar events, local bar events for attorneys that ends up essentially making contexts there?
Is that something you guys recommend
I’ve done it? I’ve had a, obviously, I go to the bar then it’s not any more than a half two, but it’s, it’s one way of doing it. For that, it’s a lot of meets and greets. It’s a lot of what we call them, rubber chicken dinner kind of thing. So we also have groups out here that are, we call them estate planning councils.
So it’s more than just the bar. It’s attorneys, bankers, CPAs, financial planners, trust officers, people from the broader estate planning community. If you have something like a bat in your area, I think that’s even more advantageous than just the bar cause attorneys aren’t the only people operating in this space.
Yep. And that gives you in one event, you get broader exposure to a bunch of different professionals, then it’s all up to you. How you follow up with them. Great. Yeah, that’s a great suggestion. As far as the bar, we haven’t had people have success as affiliate members, so you pay three hundred and twenty-five, three hundred $50 a year, and you can go to meetings as an affiliate member.
Just find some way that provides real value. One of the guys that I’ve coached in the probate space, actually built pretty much built his wealth off of working in the divorce space. And because there was no real clear list of, people going through a divorce. He actually did that where he would sponsor a monthly luncheon for a divorce attorney networking group.
And it was a long game, he bought. A lot of rubber chicken dinners over a lot of years, but, and he was really just like the guy in the back of the room and, get the meeting started again. We can thank Scott for dinner tonight. Everybody looks back and Scott’s there once again.
I’m not going to talk to that guy. Thanks for the free dinner dude. But one that one time you go back to fill up your sweet tea and you’re like, Hey man, and you strike up a conversation. And it was just, it was a bit of a grind for him. He budgeted, I can’t remember what his budget was, but he spent a considerable amount of money each month just to be there.
But eventually, he became familiar and they all became friends and they all started talking to him and now he just gets a steady flow. He can’t, he has trouble keeping up with all the divorce referrals that he gets. And so it was an Earnin. It wasn’t overnight like it’s more one of those longer processes if you’re sponsoring things like that.
But it does work if you stick with it if you’re consistent,
That’s great. Thanks, guys. Yeah.
How To Become The Local Probate Real Estate Expert
[00:38:36]All right. You got to tell us why you’re in New York City. Are you doing a deal out there? You’re at a conference what’s happening? I did refer a deal out in New York City. In fact, on the topic we just covered. I’m an affiliate member of the LA bar and Beverly Hills bar.
And through the course of that, I got asked about her from in New York and refer to a million-dollar listing in Yonkers. I’ve known where Yonkers was, but I found a colleague of my company who’s there and D and does probate does a really good job. And so I’m doing that in a meeting with other probate people in I’m really here for personal.
I had a wedding on Sunday and a wedding next Sunday, and I said, you’d rather than fly home. I would stay for the weekend, do business here and try to develop more for business here in New York. It paid for the trip and having fun. And that’s the main thing. That’s awesome. I didn’t expect that answer that kind of all tied together.
Thank you bill. Yeah. I’d also another reason to be an affiliate. I know it doesn’t feel like you get business right away, but I joined the LA bar has a chatroom feature where attorneys ask questions back and forth. And I think at some point, show what really struck me about your training that was different than all the others I’ve done.
I’ve done everyone I’ve ever seen. And the one thing that you really challenged us was for us to be experts, not just market ourselves as experts and you challenged us. And when I did the five-day mastery or three days, whatever that was, you challenge us to go to court. And that really led to my business.
But I’ll say that chat, that listserv, the chatbox, the trees have, I see questions and questions answered by the top probate people in LA. And I get information that 99% of attorneys have no idea what the answer is, but I see that information myself. So I learned more. From that, and it cost 300 bucks a year.
So it’s not that expensive. Yeah. Now, since you joined those two bars as an affiliate, have you done in-person events? I know it’s not really been the best year for that to happen. So, in LA, there, there are already three other sponsors, so I’ve never sponsored the event. I’ve gone online and learned a lot.
They have had one event with all the probate charges. I learned a lot and very few people attend it. I think the one mistake people make is just sponsoring to grace. You’re safe. Ingratiate yourself, gray sheet yourself versus. You actually don’t learn about these attorneys and learn from these judges was fantastic.
I would say that was a big benefit. I’ve done that when I was in court, they used to do continuing ed training. And one of my friends is a Tyler rep who does the training. And I went there for those events and socialize, but I personally, find really take the opposite angle. I don’t want to be looked at as marketing to the attorneys.
I want them to think I’m one of them. And so I’d rather be an expert who is known as knowing more than anybody on that. My, my niche, and I just have focused on that piece more than I do the other part. That’s my style. And bill John, I don’t think Jonathan has, he probably hasn’t had exposure to you and what you’re doing and the courts, like just, I think he’s the kind of person that would take action on this, help him understand why you go to the, why you went to the core of the first time.
You touched on that, but why do you go back and how do you actually provide value to the people there? Whether that’s the attorneys or the families, like what makes it worth going to a courthouse and stepping out of your comfort zone on a, and you’re going on a weekly basis usually, right?
What’s going on days when it could go down weekly. When I get it, when I have a buyer we’re bidding on or listing, I’m representing, I go, whereas I don’t have to go. I don’t have to go. Cause it’s video. I go early. I go to look for people. I go my best suit. Sometimes attorneys are not there, but anybody who’s there is going to talk to me.
And so I think that it’s a big advantage for me to be the only one that shows up and things in court, you just don’t get on the video. We bought a property because the other agent fell asleep on the video and the judge, moved on and we got it. And the listing agent went to an overbid ass wait.
The judge said, no, we’re done already. And that was like a $15,000 commission. Cause she was asleep at the wheel. That’s the night. That’s the precedent for that as a Supreme court case news, we lose. So
How to Respond to: “Who Are You and What Do You Do?”
[00:42:33] Hey Bill, when you’re at the courthouse and people are asking you the typical question, who are you and what do you do?
What is your dialogue sound like? That’s who they are, I’m a real estate broker. I specialize in probate real estate. The thing is I dress like an attorney. I was, I’m not now, but in court, I always wear a dark suit, white shirt. So, Tie, I carry one of those roller briefcases. As all the attorneys do, I’m older, no disrespect more than you are.
I have gray hair. I look like an attorney. I, I wear glasses even when I don’t need to in court. Because I want to look like an attorney. That’s my uniform. People walk out all the time and ask me questions that come in attorney happened. It’s hysterical. And also I have the roster of all the rooms.
So people walk by and say, where’s apartment 32. And I can say, oh yeah, that’s on the sixth floor. So people see I’m like involved in what’s going on there. And then before COVID all just because of Chad, I just did the guy who said, I just do what Chad did. I took what Chad did. And we went a step further.
But I used to hold a meetup at the court two or three days a week. And I would invite investors, wholesalers, petitioners to meet me. And I would show them the courtroom. I’d show them the research room. I and I would sit with them for the morning hearings. And then how do I put them afterward explaining what’s going on and attorneys walk by and see me with all these people.
Like every day. I think who the hell is this guy? That every day he’s here with three or four people. That was the bat fast.
Martha, I just, the best advice I got for any career is to dress like the person you want to work with. Yeah,
go ahead, mark. Yeah. At the beach, our clients dress very casually. I always just dress the Scotia better, but if you’re working with professionals, you dress like them. So that’s good advice. It’s funny how many realtors show up and they’ll show up for a sale, their listing, and they’ll dress like they do every day and I get it.
It’s hot. You drive and you walking around houses and stuff. They show up in jeans and a polo shirt, and the court will let you, when I grew up, you couldn’t go into court. That way you weren’t allowed to the court will let you, but like what a missed opportunity, put on a suit and tie and meets maturities.
I’m telling you it’s way better than cold calling them for three hours trying to set appointments and then going to lunch with them. I’ve already met them at the corner. Yeah, that’s awesome. I wish it
was that John. I wish I could take a bill with me to the Santa Cruz county probation department. You can see the people there and how they dress. Red jackets tie-dye shirts, the whole nine. I’d love to go to any court, but I think again, you have to dress the way that people want you to look right.
And in LA very formal court, women, you have women always wear coats over their dress or whatever, female clothing is. It’s very formal, they would even on zoom calls, they wear a suit and tie on the top part, at least. No, that’s a different business, but Santa Cruz, you, I show up with some bill, a bunk shirt, or something like that, for sure.
You got to dress like Johnny Cochran.
How to Commit To Getting Started and Building Momentum
[00:45:18]I had a quick question. Can I real quick chat with Anton? Yeah, go ahead. Hey, bill. I don’t know if I missed it, but so you go to court not specifically to meet these attorneys and make contacts, is that correct? I don’t have to answer that one. Of course. I want to meet people.
That’s my real job is meeting people, right? Yeah. Yeah, no, I get that part. But you are in court because of something else though. Correct? First and foremost. Part of the job is I have a listing that’s being sold, or I represent a buyer who’s bidding an open court, but I’ll tell you when I have a listing, I always bring an assistant to stand in front with a sign where the name of the property and her job is to take down the name and number, check the, I train her how to check for the cashier’s check.
I don’t want to do that. I want to meet attorneys, investors, and petitioners. But yeah, I’m there. I’m there to do my job, which is to sell the house or to buy the house, but I’m also there to meet the realtors, investors. I like the judge to see me, I’ve been able to get things, judges to approve things for my client that other people say can’t be done and I’ve earned some of that, with credibility.
I think that’s part of the game too. Okay. More for if it makes sense for someone newer, like myself, that likes to be, face to face, as opposed to phone call type of a person if it will make sense. But then when I go there then what do you say or what is the date, how do you approach him, checked and give us a structure or a script or a system.
I think he said, just go and check it out and watch it. And I w I, and I committed. I was gonna go there for five days, I, I’m not very outgoing if you know me, I’m very very shy, but I sat there and watched, I said, okay I can do this. I can get there early. It starts at eight 30.
I can get there. 7 45, most people from 7 45 to 30, have nothing to do. They’ll talk to anybody. I’ll be there. And then also I noticed I was taking notes of what happened in coordinate learn what was happening. And I reached out to people. And then afterward, the morning would end around 10 or 10 30.
There’s a research room. And there are four computers. I realized by sitting one of them, there are three of the people next to me who are researching probate. They’re either attorneys or they’re paralegals or they’re homeowners or estates or petitioners. Great. And I’m just trying to help, how can I help you with your paperwork, whatever you’re doing.
So I think you just got to figure it out and I’m sure every court is different. So I would just say, just go and figure it out, but you’re not going to figure it out day one, just invest the time and you’ll figure it out. That’s the point and that’s why the challenge didn’t come with specific Anton, like whether it’s attending a trustee sale or going to a probate court or going to the probate clerk’s office or going to a real estate investors association meeting, it’s all the same.
Yeah, the same objective. How can I provide real value in this room? So people respect my presence and want me to be here in the future. And I certainly, I didn’t expect, I love that bill still does this and that he took it to the level he did. I think it’s amazing. I only know one other person in the country that’s, they come even close to doing that.
But it was more just an exercise to get the hell out of your comfort zone. And you find out what your unique value is in the courtroom. You find out what your unique value is among investor peers and REI. You find out at the estate planning council meetings, you know what that is. So rather than me saying, go here and do this and say this, and to print these things off, me, I don’t really agree with that stuff that much, as I do look people in the eye and saying, who are you and how the hell can I help you?
And that’s really the whole thing to do. So anything like this that you can do to get out of your comfort zone, fill your blind spots. Like I challenged so many people to go meet their probate clerk. Just because it’s not like it’s revolutionary and you gain all the knowledge through osmosis, just being there, shaking her hand, but it shows you how the courage and the commitment to the niche to actually go do that.
And you’re going to learn something, even if it’s just going up the elevator turn left, it’s the third door on the right. And Kim’s office is right there. One of these days you’ll impress somebody by just knowing that just like bill said, he’s directing people around the courthouse. He’s just become, he went as a probate expert and he’s become general help.
And people like, you never know where your next deal is coming from. So whether it’s the families or the attorneys or whomever, the more immersed in this that you can become, the more comfortable you’ll be in the more contacts you’ll have, and the easier it is for deals to flow to you. So I just wanted to let you know that this conversation skills well.
Scale well beyond this, like everything that you do can do to get out there and provide value to anyone, especially where it’s not present, just the, there was no resource in that courtroom before bill gross. He filled an of value void. And I’m sure when you’re not there, the people are like where’s that guy?
Like, why are they not here? So if you’re providing real value, you’re missed. So anyway that’s my spiel on that, it was just going do as many things as you can and find regardless of what, the environment or the event as find ways to provide unique value to that group of people or those individuals.
No, in fact, I add one more thing to the serendipitous nature of this in my business. At least I used to go to REI meetings, as you mentioned, that was afterward. So I was in the court till 10 30 and I drove. Half an hour. And I’d show up at this 50 person REI meeting once a week at a Sizzler.
I’m in my suit and tie still. And of course, I tell everybody there, I was just a court. I go to court every day. I milked that. I don’t make a sound like that, but I did, I’m just coming through the courthouse. The wage was so nice. I just gave him the courthouse and, people want to do business with somebody who’s doing something different and it sounds important.
So there’s something serendipitous just being there, talking to people, Michael, let’s just talk to as many people as I could. I’ll go anywhere and talk, it doesn’t really matter to me. Yep. That’s a good point. And one of the things I don’t think I’ve ever talked about this, you got a lot of people to ask me you did you were able to build this network and get into this REI, but it’s not like that here.
One of the other things I did that I don’t think I’ve talked about, like really building a reputation that they are at the real estate investors association. One of the first things I do when I move to a new place is I go to the courthouse and run title on a couple of properties where they’re randomly chosen.
Maybe it’s a rental property, but I learned how I learned my way around the records room. So when I’m talking to other, real estate investors or real estate attorneys, I. I know how to navigate the local real estate records and stuff. And that’s something that I didn’t even know why I was doing it.
I just felt like the more I know the more credibility I’ll have as I meet people. And I was able to take investors who were, they didn’t have to do title on their own properties. And I helped them, do things and remove liens and this different stuff. So I never knew really why I was doing all that, but anything like that, that you can do that’s unique.
And I would come to real estate investors meetings talking about, Hey, I was in the courthouse last week and I noticed this or that. And the same thing Bill’s saying it just comes with like very few people are willing to get out of their damn office and out of their comfort zone to go do things like that.
So meeting that probate clerk, learning how to research the record. I don’t recommend anyone. I, no matter how frugal you are, nobody should really be like that. Consistently gathering your own probate data because you’re losing money, hand over fist. If you’re, if your time is worth anything, if you have a skillset, but I do recommend you go do it once.
Cause then you’ll appreciate the hell out of whatever vendor is doing it for you because it’s not real fun, but you can learn a ton in those meetings. Whether it’s in a records room or the courtroom just do all those things to all the things that rosy there’s a new one, the hashtag does all the things.
Figuring Out The Best Acquisition and Disposition Strategy
[00:52:34] Morris has his hand up. How can we help you, Morris? I’m here. Thank you. How can we help you today? So I just wanted to introduce myself. I just signed up last week. I’m going through the program now I’m on day three. Really enjoying it. I live in New York.
I live in Brooklyn, but most of the investing and stuff that I’ve done is in New Jersey. And that’s my plan to do this in New Jersey as well. Just a quick question that I have is New Jersey is sorry. New Jersey is wide open with different areas. Some are high-end, some are more low-end with investing, I’ve been concentrating on the low-end market with this, should I be concentrating more on the higher-end areas?
It all depends on what your acquisition in this positioning strategy is. Are you building long-term wealth? Are you trying to maximize your annual income? Are you flipping long-term buy and hold, but tell it like, what’s your strategy? So now really it’s just increasing my annual cashflow annual income.
Okay. And would you rather do that through earned income or through a passage? Okay. So we need to acquire assets for long-term buy and hold and in that case, I would recommend you probably should be on the lower end of the price spectrum because your, your money goes further. And are you capitalized?
Do you have your, do you have your own cash or do you have a financial strategy in place? So right now, no it’s actually I’m a little cap cash strapped right now, part about these like residential real estate, single-family and small multi-family is a lot of people don’t believe me, even when I show them this, but.
Small community banks will write asset-based loans. So it’s not really based on you as a person on your credit and your, your money. If you can find a home that will rent and, have a debt coverage ratio of at least 1.25. Now maybe let’s say at 1.3 banks are being a little more conservative.
If you get that at the right price. If you get that at a deep discount, they’ll give you an 85% loan to value, not a loan to cost. Now not every bank will do this. You may have to go talk to a few and build that relationship. What I recommend is when you find a bank, a community bank that will do an 85, 80, 80 5% loan to cost go put a hundred grand in there.
If you don’t have a hundred go put 20. If you don’t have 20, put 10, but show them they have nine one leverage on that money. Listen, let’s start this relationship off, right? Here’s 10 grand. You can go loan a hundred. And by the way, why don’t you loan that back to me? Or you can put it in, in a six-month certificate of deposit and then ask them for a line of credit, a business line of credit against your certificate of deposit as collateral they’ll do it.
Not everyone will do it, but a lot of them will. So you can capitalize yourself. Sue way faster than you, you think, or most people can. Especially if you have over a 700 credit score, a lot of that becomes easier. You’re, it’s closing inside of 30. It’s almost like hard money, but your rates.
Right now I got a quote on Friday. On a 400, like on a $400,000 property, 3.37, 5% on a fricking commercial note from a community bank, like 20-year amortization, 3.37, 5% closing inside of 30 days like client claim. So you can do that. And I know that probably not the answer you expected, but if you’re really looking at building passive income, wholesaling, these are taking listings, you’re giving those deals away.
And, I wish I could go back and give my 2011 self a little bit of this advice. Cause I’ll let some of the best damn cashflow deals go. Cause I’m like, oh, I’m not a landlord. I’d rather have the cash. I’m not a landlord. And as I really dug into tax optimization and realizing that real wealth is.
It’s almost more important that you optimize your taxation than it is. You try to increase your income because oftentimes you can make more money through tax savings and not everything above board. It’s just the advantages. The IRS leaves available to us, but you can oftentimes build wealth faster through that than you can getting another deal or making another dollar.
So it sounds like that’s the path you’re wanting to walk. So I would recommend looking at a long-term buy and hold strategy. And for that look in the lower end of the price spectrum. And. Not always, rentals right now are, it’s crazy what people are paying for rent so we can push them, but just understand don’t ever pay for a property that’s renting like above-market rent, because right now people are making across the country and all income brackets.
In my opinion, people are American reckless financial decisions and they’re getting caught up in the hype and everyone says it’s different this time. But they said that every other time, a bubble popped too. So just be careful buying high-rent properties because rents are likely to correct, just because we don’t have wage growth.
And real inflation is probably running close to somewhere around 12%. If you include energy and food and your tenants probably don’t eat or use gas to drive the work. So your rent won’t correct. But anyway, so that’s my advice is if you want to build passive income focus on the lower end of that price spectrum, what you may want to consider is why not do both.
If you’ve got the brokerage components in place, even if you’re using referral partners to do the groundwork on your brokerage deals, and then you do your acquisitions on the buy and hold properties. Okay. Yeah. I’m really excited. I’m just, I need to I feel like I need like proof almost like I need to prove to myself that I can do it and that it can be done fairly quickly.
I, I hear you, the testimonials that you’ve given us and you, you got me sold. You got it, man. Here’s the deal. If you have a true altruistic outlook on this, if you truly want to serve people first, you will make as much money as you need from this strategy.
I promise you there are people on this call making over a million dollars a year and they love what they’re doing, their story. Wasn’t always that way. But the common thread among the people who are sustainable in this niche and who are most successful in this niche is that thread of altruism like they actually do care about the outcome for the family more than they do.
Just accumulating their own personal wealth or paying their bills. That primary thought is how can I serve this person and provide value. And the outcome of that is really nice revenue and really good, warm, emotional feelings. And that once you get that first one, that positive reinforcement and that shot of oxytocin, when that person looks and looks you in the eye and says, my God, I think Jesus sends you to me.
Like it’s, people will say that to you over and over. Like I did. I prayed and you called, or your letter showed up, you’ll start to hear this and that. It’ll reinforce it. And once you get a few of those, man, you’ll be hooked. These are, this is, this was, I dedicated my career to this because of those things.
And yes, it was lucrative, but what really kept me in it was knowing that I was doing something bigger than putting a sign on the yard and talking about how good I was, at open houses. I was doing something that fricking mattered and I could make a difference and help retain generational wealth from one generation to the next and the next by educating them and having them trust me before you know, after the transaction.
And that just kept me fueled. So commit to just put your head down and run until you get that first one. And then it’ll take care of itself from there. It’ll self perpetuate. Okay, cool. Thank you so much. I really appreciate it. All that you’re doing chat. Can I just ask you just one other thing?
I’m sorry. You mentioned in the course that you’re revamping the whole course I’m sorry, this is a dumb question, but I dunno where you were up to on that. Can you just Update me on where that’s up to? I haven’t started and this is where this is me falling on my sword.
Like I had big intentions to put this class back out there, move into an RV and build this amazing community and scale it up. And quite frankly, as soon as we got started with these calls, I realized how different this conversation is from the ones we’ve always had over at all the leads. And I realized that most people struggle more with the mindset and small business scalability than they do with the more tactical things of what letter do I send them?
What color ink, and what envelope do I use? So for me, I’ve always been the kind of person like I’m a visionary and I have a million ideas. You should see my apple notes. Like I have this modeled out in 17 different ways. And until I’m certain on what my highest and best use is to you guys, I haven’t I’m not creating, so it’s a bit of a block it’s the first time this has ever happened to me, but all I can be as honest, like I, I had a big vision for, a state mastery where we would bring attorneys into the conversation.
We were bringing real estate professionals, eventually financial services, and we all learn and collaborate. But I’m looking at other more exciting things that I can add here that. Really nobody else was doing anyway. I am constantly, I don’t stop thinking about it, but I haven’t started building the next phase of this yet because I want to make sure it’s something unique, something valuable, and something we all want to be a part of.
Not just something like better go do something. But that’s where I’m at, man. I got, I wish I would love to say, oh, I finished that last week. You should go sign up. But I’m not exactly sure what that community looks like just yet. It’s taking form. But the good news is a lot of folks who are part of our community already are go, are part of whatever that next step is.
And they’re more qualified than I am. So I’m looking forward to it, we’ve got amazing people. We’ve got an amazing culture and we’ve got a lot of knowledge to aggregate. It’s just me determining how exactly I want to present that as the next step. But thanks for being here and being part of it and holding me accountable in front of the world more.
Hey Chad, this is about maze can hear me. I can hear you. How are you? Hey, that’s great. Hey, listen, I got a question for you. If we wanted to go back through the course again and just review it, make sure we got a handle on the procedure and everything you do. Yeah. Sure. Just log back in and go to my courses. You’ll see the probate mastery click on it and then go back up all the way to the top on the intro. And if you have trouble, you can send an email to support probate mastery and say, this is what I’m seeing. If we can duplicate it or I’ll jump on zoom with you and see out and see what you’re saying. But yeah, you can go through it as many times as you’d like, and once you’ve completed it the first time, it keeps your progress.
So you can jump back to any part to not enough to take the test and whatnot.
Thank you very much, Janet. Appreciate what you do for us. Yeah. Thank you. Ronald, you had something and you got a hand up there.
COVID Court Re-Openings and Digital Evolutions Across The Country
[01:02:51]Yes. I quick question either for the bill or you regarding going to the, I’m not sure if the bill is still on the call or not going to the courthouse. I tried that here and the court is all done online these days. And as I was talking with the person over the phone about it, and I said, this was a few months ago, I said any idea of when we’re going to go back to normal.
And she said I hope we never do. She says I like it much better this way. It presents, presents a lot of problems at the courthouse. And I don’t think it’s ever going to go back. Is that, am I just in a weird vacuum here, or is it. The rest of the country likes this as well. No, it’s certain areas I’ve been that way.
And John, what’s it likes up your way now? You guys were still all in line. Are you still, yeah, it’s funny. I just got an email or a notice today that Alameda county is now open their courthouse falling, which is just bizarre to be way behind everybody else. But Alameda county is pretty much a train wreck.
Yeah. Yeah. I can definitely see a lot of areas under that. If they could pull that off, our courts in the bay area are so antiquated and so funding deficient that I don’t think they could ever pull that off intelligently or effectively at all. Santa Clara County is quote-unquote, the capitalist silicone valley.
That’s what they like to say. And they’re stuck in the stone ages, technologically. We only just picked up electronic filing, not that long ago. And yeah, it’s bizarre. It’s even worse because they picked it up and then they’d made it mandatory, which is completely ridiculous.
Like you can’t even walk in, in a person and file something in person anymore. Everything has to be done electronically. And then that just adds to delays about a year and a half ago. About the middle of 19 before the shutdown, I actually had a judge apologized to me that they didn’t get the thing that I had filed like 10 days before the hearing.
I’ve never been apologized to a judge before, probably never again, but it’s such, it’s such a train wreck. So Bill’s style is really awesome. And it works. He’s in the largest county in California, obviously, if not one of the biggest in the nation. So no matter what, there’s always going to be people.
And post COVID California is today’s the day that California drops all the requirements, except for places of business. So mass mandate’s gone, everything’s completely wide open now. So at some point, especially out here, the larger counties will begin to approximate normal routine as they did in 2019.
But I can see a lot of small counties are people who can do stuff that technologically skipping the hassle they are, it is inefficient to be in person it’s much more efficient. I always chuckle when bill gets on, cause I’m a probate attorney, I’m going the other direction from him.
How can I get out of going to court? How can I get someone else to go for me and not have to get up in the morning and drive across town and be around a bunch of annoying attorneys? So that’s just my, been doing it 20 plus years. I’m over it, right? It’s a thrill when you’re new. And at this point in my career, I don’t want to go in, in a suit and tie.
I don’t want to have to deal with that nonsense. But yeah, in larger counties, you’re always going to have them in person aspect. You’re always going to have a place that people hang out. Some of the good people to talk to are the service providers of the industry. Like the people who really know are the actual, the actual couriers, the people who file paperwork in person where that’s allowed.
Those are the people that like, Hey, where’s everyone meet what’s going on. They have the 401k one, cause they’re always going to the big law firms they’re doing that circle around. And you can get a lot of good Intel from them. We used to do that early on in our careers. Yeah. If I could add-in, I think what county are you in Ron?
Maricopa County in Arizona. Got it. I would say two things. One is to go to your courthouse and figure it out. That’s what Chad told me to do. And your play people told me it was a waste of time to go. It’s expensive to go, blah, blah, blah. I went and worked out for myself. And if it’s hard, that means no bus is going to do it.
Number two, I would say if your court is online, then why not master that? It just shocks me how some of these close counties where you never go in John’s case as a real estate agent if everything on Santa Clara county or Alameda county was online, I know the LA online county probate system, better than any attorney dies.
And I can get documents. I can find what the information is. I get data off of it. How to use tutorials classes for preppers webinars, judge meetings okay, if you can’t go in person, there’s no excuse not to master every page of the county probate and account in California. I can’t speak for Maricopa, but in California, every county has some resources online.
It is my experience. I’ve found documents at a San Diego case for real to call me on referral. But also I’ve learned how to sift through that too. So just to clarify I did go to the courthouse and of course, this was during COVID. This was like four or five months ago. And you couldn’t get into the room where the probate court clerks are at.
They said, oh if you want to talk to them, you have to go use the phone. In the lobby to talk to the probate Curt court thing. So that’s what I did. I’ve got as close as I could now. I don’t know if I went back today if it would be any different or not. The other thing is I also would like to work in Pinel county, which is not far from me.
Panell county is a little different though because it’s a closed county. So you can’t get from all the leads, you can’t buy leads until the probate has been closed. So I don’t even know what good it would do me to try to go to the court over in Pinellas county. Chad, do you have an answer for that?
Yeah, I would say it doesn’t do you much good to go to the probate clerk, but you need to go to the court. Like you’ll be sitting there witnessing the people who are in process and if you can find a way to provide value to them or their attorney, and if you’re there even just. As a member of the public if you can do that because I pretty much guarantee you won’t have any competition, especially a petitioner, who’s having a hearing date.
You go with your client, the petitioner to the hearing, or an attorney you’re working with. I’ve asked attorneys, Hey, do you mind if I show up? Instead of you’re going to be on video, do you mind if I show up with your client at the hearing, they love it. They totally love it. So that you’re talking about going to the court for Pinel county.
Yeah, no, that’s what I’m saying is like going to the actual probate court not just going to the clerk’s office and that’s something I didn’t do. I watched the bill do it, and I’m like, you did what that’s amazing.
And it works like he has picked up business by having a presence and providing value. So that’s what I’m proposing. Why not give it a try. We don’t know like drought drive over and like figuring out when the next day it is driving over. It’s also going to teach you a lot you’ll get them, you’ll get to witness the process firsthand and you’ll feel more comfortable with the terminology.
And the players you’ll know who the judge is. You start to know the characters. So when you’re talking to probate attorneys and building that relationship, they’re like, oh, judge Jordan, how do you know, oh, I go to court every Wednesday. I’ve been there for the last three months. I actually saw you there with your paralegal last week.
We, I was the guy and the, I was the guy in the Harvey specter suit because a nice Jewish man told me I needed to dress like an attorney. So I went out and bought a $3,000, but he’s there in his plaid. John’s Nope, our Patagonia everywhere I go. I used to do custom suits.
And then when they were out at the same rate, the other ones do, I’m just out 2,500. So I just, I forgot, as I mentioned, I do have a hard stop at four 30. We’re at 90 minutes.
Community Bank Loans: Loan to Cost vs. Loan to Value (LTC vs LTV)
[01:10:23]One last thing I do Anton ask what’s the difference between loan to cost and loan to value on community loan. So loan to value would be a percentage of the appraised amount of the property.
So if it appraises for a hundred and they’ll give you 85% loan to value, then that you can loan, you can land $85,000 against that asset loan to cost would be if you had a $50,000 acquisition price and only $10,000 in repairs, then they’re only going to loan you 60% of the loan to cost ratio. So you would get 60 grand on that loan versus the 85 on the loan to value.
All right. I gotta run guys. Thanks so much for being here. I don’t think we left anyone’s questions or answers. Thanks to everybody participating. John loved bill gross. Thanks so much, everybody and Fed, I will call you here shortly after this call.
About the Author
Katt is an expert in probate marketing and helps entrepreneurs build businesses in the probate space. She is the co-founder of the Estate Professionals Mastermind podcast, which has become the most widely-shared probate real estate podcast. She also writes training content for ProbateMastery.com and a weekly LinkedIn newsletter followed by over 9000 professionals. You can reach her on Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn.