At some point along the investment journey, it’s only natural that you’ll ask yourself if you’ve got what it takes to cut it in the property world. I can emphatically tell you the answer is YES. Well, on the proviso that you’re prepared to work for it and have some of the traits found among the most successful investors out there.
As I mentioned last week, there’s is a common misconception that successful property investors are those with money – people born into rich families, people with large saving pots and those that are already property “experts”. But again, I’ll say that this is rubbish.
Having mentored and coached a large number of would-be investors, I’ve come to realise that the most successful individuals all share similar traits. Of course, some have had the advantage of disposable cash, but certainly not all of them.
So if money’s not a pre-requisite, let’s look at what it takes to be successful in property.
Firstly, successful property investors have vision. They understand the importance and value of goal setting, and they know where they are going and why. Secondly, they have persistence. They realise that the ability to keep going is more important than how much or how little they know. And thirdly, they have focus. They have set their goals and are ready to take action and to keep going until they achieve.
Successful investors stick to what they know and block out the distractions that stand in their way of getting there.
Vision, persistence and focus are the three fundamental attributes that any aspiring investor needs to have. (Remember, knowledge can be acquired and – like myself, you don’t need a huge pot of savings to get you started either).
Aside from these key traits, possessing a certain amount of creativity is also of exceptional benefit. By this I don’t mean practical creativity like DIY skills for renovation projects, but rather intellectual creativity. In other words, being creative in goal setting, devising strategies and making plans.
Successful investors also have the ability to be creative in overcoming problems. They are “problem solvers”… people who find solutions where others see obstacles. And they profit from this. They have good communication skills and have mastered the art of dealing with estate agents, surveyors, solicitors, builders, and of course, vendors, with ease. (Keep reading this blog because you’ll find out how you can be more creative over the coming months).
However, those that go furthest of all have an extra trait that makes them stand out. They are positive thinkers. They do not give into doubts, do not make assumptions and are not afraid of failure. They never assume that a property is not for sale or that a vendor won’t sell for a bargain price. And they never assume a deal is beyond their means until they’ve explored every possible avenue to get it.
Often, our greatest limitations are created in our own minds. If we think we can’t, we don’t. Most people do nothing because they are held back by fear. To some extent we are held back by a number of fears, including the fear of “what they may say”, whoever they are. Others strangely enough are even held back by the fear of success. At a deep level they don’t really want their lives to change; they are in their comfort zone and are happy. But successful investors don’t fear.
Neither do they doubt. Doubt often comes from fear and in turn, fear is often the result of ignorance. But the antidote to ignorance is knowledge and information. Rather than take as gospel what is published in the press or heard down the pub, a successful investor will filter what is nonsense and what is of value.
Whether it’s that “Property prices are going to crash 30% this year”, “Buy to let is dead” or “The market is stagnant”, these investor can shut out negativity and are able to process only information that has come from reliable sources. What’s more, they only listen to advice from other professionals. Those that have been there, done that… and actually achieved.
To give yourself every chance of making it, consider if you have the attributes of a successful investor. And then back this up with real knowledge. Repel those doubts and fears and learn all there is to know about property investing to help you reach the top.
Here’s to successful property investing.
Peter Jones B.Sc FRICS
Chartered Surveyor, Author & Property Investor
PS. By the way, I’ve rewritten and updated my best selling ebook, The Successful Property Investor’s Strategy Workshop, which is an account of how I put together my multi-property portfolio, starting from scratch and with no money of my own, and how you can do the same. For more details please go to www.ThePropertyTeacher.co.uk/PSStrat