The saying “It’s not what you know, but who you know,” isn’t entirely true as both are important. What you know as a single family real estate investor is very important. The insights you gain from trial and error or from working with a real estate mentor can help you spot opportunities and avoid pitfalls. There is definitely value in that.
However, whoyou know will also make a significant difference in how successful you are in growing your real estate portfolio. In particular, your network of industry service providers can give you the support you need to acquire properties efficiently and cost-effectively, and to operate them the same way.
Connect with These Real Estate Industry Pros
Here are five types of service providers you should develop relationships with early on as a single family real estate investor:
- “Property Hunter.” I didn’t say “real estate agent” because while you may choose to work with an agent, there are others such as turnkey providers and wholesalers who can point you in the direction of promising properties.
- Lender. Having a certified lending partner that you know and trust (and who knows and trusts you) can make purchasing or refinancing property much easier. It’s especially important to get a quick decision and to enable you to commit on good deals before somebody else does. If you can connect with a lender who specializes in single family rental homes, that’s even better.
- Real estate attorney. Real estate law can be very complex, and it varies from state to state. Whether you need input from an attorney on every deal or just on occasion, it’s good to know one so you aren’t left scrambling when an issue arises.
- Insurance agent. Working with an insurance agent who has experience with real estate investors can save you significant time and money. For example, if you are buying and selling homes on a regular basis, the agent can set up a policy that lets you easily add and delete houses as your portfolio evolves so you don’t have to purchase a new policy with each acquisition.
- Property manager. In some cases, you may not need a property manager, for example if you choose to manage the property yourself or if you decide to go with a turnkey solution. But outside of those scenarios, having a trusted partner interacting with tenants and managing your properties in general can save you a great deal of time and effort.
Be Sure They Know You by Name
We’ve all enjoyed the benefit of having someone go “above and beyond” for us because of the rapport we’ve established with them. In a competitive industry like single family rental real estate, that little bit extra can have a big impact. Make it a point to establish and maintain strong relationships with industry experts, including by steering some business their way when you can. Who you know (and who knows you) matters!