Your Real Estate Investment Team
By Steve Gillman - 2007
I had a tough time at first with real estate investment. One
reason was that I tended to be a "lone wolf," trying
to do too much myself. I've since learned that to do well investing
in real estate, you need to a team of people you can trust and
rely on. Below are some possible team members, and what they
need to be on the team.
1. Real estate agent. An agent with experience in the area
you invest in and access to the MLS (Multiple Listing Service),
can be a great help. If she's a seller's agent, she can still
ethically bring you the best deals once she knows you're a serious
2. Real estate attorney. Find someone familiar with the laws
and legal customs of your area, and with experience in the type
of deals you intend to do (If you're buying rentals, she should
be familiar with doing evictions, for example.)
3. Accountant. Keeping books for real estate investments is
getting more complicated with all the tax-law changes. Find someone
that understands the law and you.
4. Mortgage broker or mortgage banker. The first can offer
many options, and the second can make the loan decision. Each
has advantages, and you could use both. Either way, it's important
they understand what you want (fast closings, lower interest,
5. Real estate appraiser. A good appraiser give you an accurate
valuation of a property, and they should be able to suggest ways
in which you can raise the value of a property. Find someone
that will talk to you.
6. Property inspector. Find one that is, or used to be, a
contractor, so he can find the problems AND give you some idea
of the cost of repairs.
7. Insurance agent. Good ones will understand what you want,
and find ways to save money. Insure all your properties with
one agent, and you're likely to have better service.
8. Escrow officer. They'll usually be with a closing company.
Find someone that's efficient, and can explain things clearly
to both sides. If he or she is confused by a slightly creative
contract, he should educate easily or be replaced.
9. Cleaning person. A trusted person or crew ready means a
fast turn-around when you buy a rental or rehab project.
10. Property manager. Be sure that the company you hire has
experience, is responsive, and will have time for you when you
call. A good property manager can tell you what you should get
for rent in a given area - BEFORE you buy.
Real estate investment is more profitable - and less stressful
- with a good team on your side.