One of the biggest issues that we wanted to highlight when we were filmed for the BBC Money Documentary is how to tackle the challenge that any new investor faces when they are going out into the marketplace to approach potential sellers and estate agents for the first time – establishing credibility. On the BBC documentary, you will recall Raj and I sitting in an estate agent’s office with Sarah and Rhys as they started to develop rapport. For somebody who is in his or her teens, the issue of credibility is magnified many times over. So let’s look at a couple of ways in which you can establish credibility quickly.
For many people that I teach, the question they ask is “How can I establish credibility when I don’t have any properties at the moment?” Their main concern is that they will not be taken seriously; especially if they also feel they do not have the money to buy a portfolio. This latter concern comes down to what the main strategies are that the investor is actually applying. There are opportunities in the property market to make money without physically having to buy properties initially. This was the suggested route that Sarah and Rhys were taking.
In their case, the message we explained during the filming was, that as a young couple, they can initially focus on sourcing property deals as well as developing a pot of cash and experience in the property market before they start buying properties. For anybody starting out in property there are double benefits to this process. Firstly, you will be going out and researching specific markets, running your calculations and identifying clearly which properties do, and do not work. In doing this, you will develop contacts and confidence in the market place in which you have chosen to specialise. Over time this will lead to many deals coming your way. The second benefit in this process is that you will be able to pass specific deals on to investors who have the money and the ability to complete quickly. With each deal you source, you will build credibility with the estate agents and your contacts because you are able to move deals through quickly and, at the same time, you will also increase your pot of cash directly from your finder’s fee.
Here are three great ways to establish your credibility quickly:
1) Develop Impactful Communication – great communicators are treated differently to average communicators. Learn to use your words precisely and with a good physical posture. Studies show that most impact comes from how you carry yourself (body language and physiology) and also the tonality in your voice. Avoid slang words and engage the other person directly in the eye with confidence. How you carry yourself – will carry you a long way on first meetings!
2) If you are not buying for YOU – then let the agent or the person you are dealing with know very quickly that you “represent” several large investors who are looking to develop a portfolio of multiple properties in this area. If you know the number, state it. Let the agent (contact you are dealing with) know that you have a set of criteria that you are working to and it is your role to view, analyse and filter the deals for your clients.
3) If you are buying for yourself and you are new at it. Explain that you are a property investor; you have spent some time analysing different parts of the country and have identified, through your research, that “this area” meets your current requirements for investment. Say that you are looking to develop long-term relationships in the area with good contacts and people who can help you source deals that fit your specific strategy. Then ask if they would like you to expand further on what specifically you are looking for.
Practise with your own scripts; keep practising until it feels natural. The more you go through these types of approach, the easier it will be to approach people and the more natural you will come across.
One thing that I had hoped would come across in the BBC Money Documentary is that it takes time to develop these skills and that it does require an investment of your time and money to make it work – but hey – so does any business that you are committed to!