In Part One of 5 things you should carry in your prospecting tool box we skirted around the obvious—hammers, screwdrivers, and duct tape—and discussed the importance of packing a video camera, digital camera, and mobile device. If you missed the article, click here to read it.
In this second part you might be surprised what I have to say, but trust that it comes from personal experience.
Thomas Guide or Other Street Map
Seasoned real estate investors will know why I’ve included this item in your prospecting tool box. Even in these days of GPS, maps are vital. They’re especially important when prospecting in an unfamiliar area. You only need to learn by experience once before understanding the relevance.
Some real estate investors choose to make a list of several prospective properties so they can visit all of them in a day. Great idea. It saves time and money. That is if you’re organized. That’s where mapping out your route comes in.
You’ll also save on gas if you use a map to help you illuminate backtracking. This is where you can allow experience to teach you unless you follow my advice. If you leave your route to chance you might find yourself zig-zagging all over the place. Find a starting point and then link your stops based on proximity. The more time you save, the more time you have to prospect.
Your perception of the properties you tour is important—especially when considering your investment business plan. When you know what you’re looking for, your search is easier.
Notebook and Pens/Pencils
Okay, now wait a minute. If you read Part One of this series you saw that I recommended packing a camera and video recorder for prospecting. You also read about the purpose they serve. Why, then, would we need a notebook if we have a camera and video?
Old school investors had only their memories and notebooks to rely on when prospecting. In the mid-50s cameras provided a way of visually recording details. Video became popular relatively recently—over the last few decades.
It’s true, cameras and video have revolutionized the investment industry, however, notebooks still have value. An adjunct might be a hand-held audio recorder. These tools are useful when recording things a camera or video cannot: your thoughts.
Your perception of the properties you tour is important—especially when considering your investment business plan. When you know what you’re looking for, your search is easier. By process of illumination, you can take many off your list, and of those you see, you can take notes in case you come up with marketing ideas or changes you can make if you decide to buy.
This two-part series on what items you need in your prospecting tool box mentioned nothing about typical handiwork tools, but these 5 items are the most important. Use this information to set yourself up for success as a real estate investor.