Whether you grew up in Queens or came here looking for investment opportunities, you’ve likely noticed that our borough’s real estate market has been a bit of a rollercoaster lately. However, though the population of New York City as a whole has been declining over the last decade, Queens has continued to grow, and so has our real estate market. This growth hasn’t been lost on investors, who have come here to capitalize on historically low interest rates and a resurgence in demand for Queens real estate.
If you’re a new investor in Queens, you may be discouraged by the lack of solid investment properties—as well as the heavy competition—on the MLS (multiple listing service). However, many of the best real estate investment deals are off-market, which means the properties are never advertised for sale. But, as a new investor, how are you supposed to find off-market real estate in Queens, NY? Fortunately, there are strategies for proactively finding off-market real estate deals.
How to Find Off-Market Real Estate in Queens, NY
Getting started in real estate investment in New York City can be really tough, with sky-high property prices and fierce competition for the best deals. To get a leg up on the competition, you’ll want to explore multiple avenues for finding off-market real estate.
Real estate lead lists are the most well-known and commonly used ways to find off-market deals. Lead lists provide demographic information about homeowners and can be customized to target certain groups who may be interested in selling their homes soon. You can buy lead lists online relatively easily and inexpensively, which is why so many real estate investors use them.
Unfortunately, the ubiquity of online lead lists presents a few challenges. First of all, with so many investors using lead lists, you’ll be facing a lot of competition. Not only will you have to beat out a lot of other people to snag a deal, but the homeowners on the list may have received a lot of other unsolicited calls already and could be completely turned off to the idea of working with a real estate investor. The information on lead lists can also be outdated or inaccurate, which means you could spend a lot of valuable time chasing dead-ends. So, while lead lists can be a helpful tool for finding off-market real estate in Queens, NY, they shouldn’t be your only strategy.
Real Estate Agents
Many investors choose to hire a real estate agent to find off-market deals for them. Real estate agents tend to keep an eye out for properties that might hit the market soon and are adept at spotting good deals and diamonds-in-the-rough. Many real estate agents believe working with professional investors is mutually beneficial, so you shouldn’t have any trouble finding someone to help you track down off-market deals.
The main downside of hiring a real estate agent is the cost. Depending on how involved your real estate agent gets in helping you secure the deal, you could end up owing a large fee or commission. As a new or part-time investor, you may not have the budget to add that fee to the laundry list of other costs involved in real estate investments. That’s why many new real estate investors choose to save that money and search for deals themselves.
Another popular way to find off-market deals is through direct marketing to homeowners who may be interested in selling. This strategy can be used to target specific groups of homeowners, for instance by purchasing ad space on a billboard or sending out direct mailers in an up-and-coming neighborhood like Jackson Heights. The business tools on social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook also make it easy to market to specific demographics and zip codes, allowing you to get your name out to a wider audience of potential sellers.
Marketing can be expensive, though, and it can often take some time to see any results. If you’re a new investor without much marketing experience, it may take you awhile to develop an effective campaign, and you’ll likely have to repeat the process multiple times before you get any solid leads from it. While you’re perfecting your marketing strategy and waiting for potential sellers to come to you, you might be missing out on great deals that could be building your business. So, while direct marketing is useful for finding off-market real estate in the long run, it may not be the best strategy when you’re just starting out and need to make deals quickly.
Many seasoned real estate investors learn about off-market deals through their friends and contacts in the industry. As a new investor, you can join professional associations or real estate investing clubs to gain access to these potentially valuable networks. You can also attend local or regional conferences and seminars to make connections with professionals in the industry. In addition to real estate agents and other investors, you’ll find that contractors and vendors often have the inside scoop on which properties will be hitting the market soon and whether or not they’d be good investments.
However, to actually earn the trust of other real estate professionals, you’ll need to invest some serious time and money into networking at local meetings and events. You need to develop relationships with people, and that doesn’t happen in one happy hour. There are often fees and dues to pay for professional associations and investment clubs, as well, plus the cost of networking dinners and drinks while you’re trying to schmooze with potential connections. The time and money it takes to successfully develop a real estate investment network on your own can be too much for new investors trying to build a business.
The Best Way To Find Off-Market Real Estate in Queens, NY
When it comes to strategies for finding off-market real estate in Queens, NY, I’ve tried them all. It wasn’t until I became a HomeVestors® independently owned and operated franchise and gained access to their proprietary lead generation tools that I started successfully making off-market real estate deals. As a HomeVestors® franchise, you’ll gain access to the UGVilleSM platform of real estate investment tools, plus a HomeVestors® Development Agent will be there to offer one-on-one support and guidance as you make your first few off-market deals.
Are you ready to take advantage of the best lead generation tools for real estate investors in Queens? Contact HomeVestors® today to join our network of independently owned and operated franchises and make your real estate investment dreams a reality.
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HomeVestors of America® is the nation’s only real estate investing franchise, providing business opportunities to real estate and investment professionals across the nation.