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Doug was born in Colorado Springs, CO and raised in Carlsbad New Mexico. After high school he ventured west to the sunny coast of Southern California. It was there he met his beautiful bride Andrea, who happens to share his entrepreneurial spirit!
As newlyweds, they ventured back to Colorado and started Mountain High Concessions, a Kettle Corn vender for special events and sporting/concert venues. Mountain High Concessions became the first Kettle popcorn vender for the Denver Broncos at Mile High Stadium. They were itching to get back to So Cal and they sold the concessions company and got started in Real Estate!
16 years and 3 kids later, they are the proud owners of one of Southern California’s largest wholesale real estate purchasing companies! They operate the business together along with our incredible team! Over the past decade he has worked as a California Certified Residential Appraiser from 2003-2010. Since 2008, he and Andrea have purchased and sold over 250 properties in Southern California and manage their in-house rental property portfolio.
In this episode, Doug shares with us how he started by sending out about 1,000 postcards each month that had the ‘Urgent Notice’ message on them to absentee owners. His response rate then was about 2% to 4%…which is incredible!
Too bad everyone else started doing it and now the response rates are much, much lower. Typical investor response rates on direct mail is around .5% (half a percent).
Doug is now mailing around 20,000 pieces PER MONTH! He’s definitely dialed in his message and list in order to be comfortable mailing that much.
Instead of post cards, Doug now mails letters that are more professional. They have his business name and logo on them. He also includes a picture of himself and his family.
I think this is where direct mail for real estate investors is headed. Too many people are mailing yellow letters that come across as “iffy”. If you get a letter in the mail from a complete stranger that says they want to buy your house and to call them…and that’s all…your BS meter is probably being pegged.
Doug uses propertyradar.com for his lists. They are only available for west coast states. He used to get his lists from listsource.com (where most investors still get their lists).
His criteria for his absentee owners list is:
- House older than 20 years
- Bought 4+ years ago
- With more than 60% equity
- Less than 3,000 sqft
Many investors have trouble figuring out what benefits to motivated sellers to list in their letters. Here are some we discussed in this episode:
Benefits of Selling to a Real Estate Investor
- We buy As-Is. Make no repairs.
- Fast Cash so you can Sell Quickly
- Sell without dealing with Tenants or Family Members
- Pay No Commissions
- Skip the Hassles
- Have Confidence the Deal with Close
To come up with your own benefits, just put yourself in the shoes of motivated sellers. Consider why you would seller to investor rather than the conventional way of listing with a Realtor.
Download a pdf that has 11 incredible tips to help you work successfully with your spouse just like Doug and Andrea and Danny and Melissa do.
Download The Guide
Special Bonus Download: Click Here to Download a pdf that has 11 tips for working successfully with your spouse from Doug and Andrea Van Soest.
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