One great way to find apartment building deals is to look in the local Real Estate Classifieds every day or every week. When owners want to test the market or they choose not to use a commercial broker and sell their commercial property “by owner”, they post an ad in the local paper. Staying on top of the ads is 1 way to keep a competitive advantage in your market.
To find prospective apartment building deals for sale, look under the “investment property” or “real estate for sale” section. Depending on the size of your market, there may be several for sale or none available at all. If there are none, do not be discouraged. This may be a good opportunity because if you persist, you may be the only one that sees the ad the day it comes out and have little to no competition.
One reason why real estate classified ads work well is because the owner probably believes in pinching pennies. If they are not willing to hire a broker because they want to save a little money, there is also a good chance that they followed this philosophy in managing the property. This might mean that you find justified reasons to ask the owner for a discount if the property has deferred maintenance. Also, they probably have more room to negotiate since they are not paying a broker. If you are really lucky, they may even be asking less for the property than what you believe it is worth.
Real Estate classifieds also come in the form of internet advertising. You do not have to rely solely on the local paper. Some of the more obvious places you can look which probably have a lot of investors competing against you already include www.craigslist.org, www.loopnet.com, and www.realtor.com. If you are not familiar with these, they are worth a look. There are deals on these sites and they do provide you with a great opportunity to meet local owners, brokers, and other commercial industry professionals.
Some of the less obvious sites you can check out are:
Regardless of where you go to find your classified ads, there are a lot of deals out there for you to start sorting through. Just like with any other lead generation strategy, the more property you weed through, the closer you will get to the needle in a haystack deal which could end up netting you millions of dollars.
Follow the steps above and you should be well on your well to your next apartment building deal.