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off market properties, vacant houses, find off market properties, get started in real estate investingAs a new real estate investor, you are probably always on the hunt for a great deal, but know that many other people are doing the same thing, too.  An ideal way to find a property is to look for off market properties while driving for dollars.

If you don’t already know, off market properties are houses that are not listed on the MLS.  The owners might not have even thought about selling yet.

But, that does not mean they are not interested.  In fact, there are several things you can look for that suggests they may be eager for someone like you to enter into their lives.

How to Find Off Market Properties to Grow Your Passive Income

First, let’s discuss the simple, most critical activity to do in order to find off market properties: Driving for Dollars.

Driving for dollars is nothing new.  In fact, when I was just a child, my mom would get me into my car seat, strap me in, and we would go out looking for properties.  It was a super effective way to find off market properties then, and it still is effective in finding them today.

And, on that note driving for dollars is a FANTASTIC way for stay-at-home moms to get involved in real estate!  Just load up the kids in the van, turn on a movie/podcast/audiobook, and drive. The kids just tag along for the ride, and maybe even will take a nap.

You, on the other hand, get some productive time to hunt down some awesome off market properties deals!

I like to say that driving for dollars is at least a three person deal.  Someone needs to drive.  Another person needs to take the pictures.  And then someone else can jot down notes and property addresses.  Possibly someone else will navigate the maps or GPS, since typically you will be in an area that you don’t know very well.

But, it’s a total blast!  You can listen to music, or download a podcast.  Of course you can also just enjoy each other’s company, while doing some serious prep work to find off market properties in an area.

Keep Your Eyes Open for the Key Characteristics of Off Market Properties

Now that you know the importance of driving for dollars, let’s discuss some of the things to look for to find off market properties.

The biggest thing to look for to find off market properties are empty houses.  Once you start paying attention, you will notice that empty houses have signs. And, if you would like to get my complete overview of my 10 most important steps to get your first deal, including a list of signs to look for to know if a house is empty, click here.

But, while you’re out driving for dollars, what might you see for off market properties that are empty?

Well, it depends on the time of the year, but keep your eyes open for un-shoveled snow that has built up and just been left there.  If it’s not the snowy season, look for really long and unmanaged grass that is often nearly waist high.

Lots of properties that are empty do not have a regular lawn care system in place.  No one is managing the grass or yard, so things look unkept and wild. Often you will see broken gutters, or gutter overgrown with seeds and grass growing IN the gutter itself!

You could see a little mountain of mail, newspapers, etc. just sitting in the driveway or at the front door.  Sometimes you can even see the trash cans are turned upside down, or tosses about by the wind, but never fixed.  They could even be missing entirely, because the county came and picked them up.

Think about your own house.  What are its signs of life?

Curtains and blinds make for a block from passersby to see right into your home. So, an empty house often does not have these things, and you can see straight through the entire house.

The house really just looks dead.  Without any human activity happening, everything just gets cold and sterile.  While this might be bad for the owners, it only means great things for you, investor.

Find Off Market Properties to Grow Your Passive Income

Now that you know how to find off market properties, keep your eyes open for next week’s post about what to do with it next!  Yes, there is surely a system to working the deal from start to finish, and I am going to help you get some tips to the process.

But, if you are all in and gung ho, ready to seriously change your life with real estate investing, make sure you check out my entire program that gives you everything you need.  My course, First Deal Done Fast, gives you all of my video trainings, PDFs, worksheets, blueprints, scripts, EVERYTHING. So, if you’re really really serious and ready to move, check it out here!

However, maybe you are not quite there yet, and are still trying to wrap your head around this new world.  That’s fine! Make sure you get my FREE 10 Steps to Your First Deal PDF so that you can get started and make your first deal fast.  Just click here and sign up to receive yours right away.

And, if you have any thoughts or questions, don’t be afraid to comment below!  I’d love to hear what you’re struggling with or confused about.

I know you can do this.  Success is only on the other side of fear.  Let’s get to it!