Finding and Funding Great Deals by Anson Young

Happy #WellTailoredWednesday! As some avid readers of this blog may recall, one of my 2019 resolutions is to invest more in real estate. Since the start of the year I’ve invested in an online REIT and another online real estate crowdfunding company. I’ve also been reading a lot about real estate…and one of the books that I just completed was Finding and Funding Great Deals by Anson Young.

Anson is a successful investor from BiggerPockets and he’s been a 3-peater on their famous podcast in these episodes:

Before I begin my review, I want to caveat that this is the first book that I did not read page by page and cover to cover. I skimmed many parts and reread others. The book is very comprehensive. Whether you’re a beginner looking to get your feet wet or if you’re an experienced landlord who’s looking for tips on streamlining your process for finding deals, there’s great content in the book for everyone.

Putting the Fun in Fundamentals

Showing how to narrow down the property type on ListSource. (Chapter 2)

For example, in his chapter on Market Analysis (Chapter 2), he talks about how investors can find data on leasing platforms such as Zillow, ListSource, Redfin, and the MLS. Additionally, he even adds screenshots of the filters and fields the investor should input to find what he or she is looking for. In Chapter 6 where he talks about Evaluating Deals, he goes into great detail on what to look for when analyzing comparables. From here he defines some key formulas such as the 70 percent rule, the Fixed-Cost Method, the meaning of Cap Rates, and how to use these formulas during the underwriting process. For budding investors, these fundamentals are the key to success.

Another great aspect of this book is that it’s just so easy to read. Throughout the book, Anson does a great job translating both high-level and granular real estate concepts into digestible bits. He also makes the content seem more conversational by adding his wit and a ton of jokes throughout the book: “a basement in Phoenix is about as common as a day you needed a coat.” (Chapter 6) or providing quotes from Groundhog Day (Chapter 1)!

Putting the Fun in Funding

In the latter part of the book, Anson focuses on how to finance deals. From the get-go, he highlights the massive tradeoff that investors face when they seek funding:

The easier-to-find options are harder to get; you could walk into any bank to get a loan, but you need to have the credit, job history, and down payment to get that loan—not to mention the appraisal, loan conditions, and thirty-day close! The harder-to-find options offer better rates and looser standards; you could find a handful of rich guys who want to earn 10 percent, could fund in two days, and never want to see your credit report or ask for a down payment. Chapter 7

This is something that I’m struggling with at the moment–getting bank financing and raising private capital from investors. I’ve thought about some of the ways of securing financing that Anson talks about, which include:

  • Cash
  • Self-Directed IRAs (SDIRAs)
  • Bank Financing
  • Loans–Conventional, Construction, FHA, VA, Portfolio
  • Hard & Private Money
  • Seller Financing
  • Subject To
  • Lease Options
  • Transactional Funding
  • Partnerships
  • Crowdfunding

Clearly there a lot of ways to finance a deal that I need to consider! After highlighting the pros and cons of each method, Anson then dedicates a lot of time to Negotiation.

Initiating Negotiating

One of the goals for my day job is to work on my negotiating skills, so I made sure to read up on this section intently. A key nugget of advice Anson provides is for investors to get comfortable with hearing “no”. In other words, the sooner they can overcome the fear of hearing “no”, the better equipped they will be in handling those objections.

Go out in the world and get to ten nos as fast as possible. Chapter 8

In addition, Anson talks about how negotiation doesn’t always have to be financially-driven for a discount off the sales price. This is usually the main reason sellers say “no” in the first place. Sometimes the investor simply needs to solve the seller’s problem. Some of these creative concessions include closing quickly, providing moving assistance to the seller, allowing the seller to carry-back the note, and more, all of which I found to be incredibly helpful. In the future I plan to read one of the best-known negotiating books: Never Split the Difference by Chris Voss as well as the [in]famous The Art of the Deal by Donald Trump, so stay tuned to those reviews!

How to scale your business by optimizing your marketing budget (Chapter 11)

Anson also does a great job on spending time on the logistical procedures of closing the deal. This is by far one of the most dense stages of the acquisition process. From describing the different contracts that could be used (Chapter 9) to finding an investor-friendly Title company or attorney, Anson walks the reader through several nuances he or she should watch out for.

To close out the book, Anson zooms out and talks about the big picture. Chapter 11 provides tangible tips on how investors can successfully scale their business by building processes. Consequently, the investor will find better deals at a great price and will be able to secure funding. As a budding investor, I appreciated him providing this advice because it gives me a clearer path ahead in my investing career.

Overall Thoughts

In summary, I enjoyed reading this book, although I don’t think investors need to read every page cover to cover. I give it a full 5/5.

Read if you:

  • Are having trouble sourcing deals or finding financing.
  • Are looking for a manual on real estate investing. Anson does a great job of highlighting the step-by steps needed to become successful in the business.
  • Are looking to scale your business by building systems and negotiating to find better deals.

Don’t Read if You:

  • Focus on multifamily or commercial real estate. While there are nuggets of information on best practices for real estate investing, I would say 80% of this book is catered to those investors who focus on Single Family or Fix & Flip.
  • Are skeptical on real estate investing in the first place. If you still need convincing, you may want to consider reading Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki first.
  • Already have a full-fledged real estate business. I highly doubt Grant Cardone will find anything new from this book. If you’re like him, you may want to read about optimizing your business or about some of the more advanced real estate investing strategies.

If you’re interested in buying Finding and Funding Great Deals, you can purchase it on BiggerPockets here. Thanks for reading and please feel free to leave your thoughts in the Comments’ section below!

5.0Overall Score

Happy #WellTailoredWednesday! As some avid readers of this blog may recall, one of my 2019 resolutions is to invest more in real estate. Since the start of the year I've invested in an online ...

  • Applicability
  • Theoretical
  • Ease of Reading
  • Book Length