House flipper, author, and speaker, J Scott, joins Bill Allen, to give his 10 essentials for building a solid business foundation.
J Scott spent much of his early career in Silicon Valley, where he held management positions at several Fortune 500 companies, including Microsoft and eBay. In 2008, J and his wife Carol decided to quit their corporate jobs, move back East, start a family, and focus on real estate investing. In the past ten years, they have bought, built, rehabbed, sold, lent-on and held over $60M in property all around the country.
J is also the co-host of The BiggerPockets Business Podcast and the author of four books on real estate investing, which have sold over 200,000 copies and have helped investors from around the world get started with real estate.
The Book on Flipping Houses: How to Buy, Rehab, and Resell Residential Properties was instrumental in Bill’s success getting started in his business.
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J’s essential business lessons:
1. The biggest mistake you’re making in your life today is not saying “No” enough.
2. Money is not the goal – it’s the currency you use to achieve the goal. Until you realize that, you’ll never feel settled.
3. It’s unlikely you’re going to make money doing something just because you love it. It’s unlikely you’re going to make money if you don’t love what you’re doing.
4. Your desire to look wealthy is a detour on your road to being wealthy.
5. If the amount of money you earn is limited by the number of hours you work, you will never be wealthy.
6. The value of any cash-flowing asset is going to be driven by the amount of cash it throws off to the owner (at least the part of the value that you control). Want your cash-flowing assets to be worth more? Figure out how to increase the amount of cash your assets throw off.
7. There’s only two ways to increase the amount of cash your assets throw off: 1. Increase the income it generates or 2. Decrease the cost of owning that asset. Every minute you spend focused on your cash-flowing investments should be spent either figuring out how to increase income or decrease expenses.
8. To increase income in a business, don’t focus on sales; focus on leads. Get more leads, and the increase in sales will take care of itself.
9. The best way to decrease expenses for any business or investment is through creating long-term efficiencies.
10. The ROI on any investment is going to boil down to two things: 1. The risk of that investment and 2. Your ability to negotiate. Good negotiation doesn’t just make you more money, it reduces your risk.
11. The fastest way to build a successful business is to copy off someone else who has already done it. And no, this is NOT unethical.
12. At the end of the day, being a successful entrepreneur boils down to only two skills: 1. Building a great product and 2. Being able to sell it.
13. In business and investing, there are two main sources of leverage: Money and People. If you’re not using both, you’re under-performing.
14. To build a successful business, your product/service must either be cheaper or better than the competition. Most of us aren’t smart enough to succeed through cheaper, so you should probably focus on better.
15. If you don’t have a competitive advantage, you’ll only win by being cheaper. But, like I said above, most of us aren’t smart enough to succeed by being cheaper. Make sure you have a competitive advantage.
16. If you don’t think you have a competitive advantage, you’re not thinking hard enough.
17. Want lots of money? Stop focusing on your problems and start focusing on other people’s problems.
18. If two investments are offered publicly (meaning, other people have access to them), the one with the higher ROI will necessarily have more inherent risk than the one with the lower ROI. “No risk” investments don’t exist and if the return offered on an investment seems too good to be true, it probably is.
19. Give credit. Take responsibility. Never the other way around.
20. Busy isn’t the same as productive. Most of us are busy. Few of us are productive.
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