Setting Your Goals for Real Estate Investing

I want to ask you two questions: 1. Do you have a Will? And 2. Do you have written goals for the next one, three, five, and ten years?

If you answered “yes” to the first question but “no” to the second, you’re planning more for your death than you are for while you are here. Think about that.
I want to challenge you to start setting some goals, but remember if a goal isn’t in writing, it’s simply a conversation. It must be in writing, and it must have a deadline.
Here are a few guidelines for setting goals in real estate investing.

Goals Must Be Specific

I want you to be specific and include details but start rough. When you start rough for example, you want a BMW.
You don’t have to get into the details about what color, what options, that sort of thing, just write it down.
Make your list huge…
What kind of home do you want, what do you want for your family, college education, spend more time, travel, anything you can think of.
You can come back later to prioritize them and set them up as to what you want in one month, three months, six months, twelve months, then three, five, ten, twenty, thirty-year goals.
The more goals you have, the happier you will be, the longer you will live, and the more prosperous you will be.

Goals Must Be Measurable

You cannot set a goal to be financially independent. There’s no way you can measure that. You can’t manage what you can’t measure. You need to set a goal for the amount of income you want per month, per year, the amount of equity you want in properties in one, three, five, ten, and twenty years.
It must be measurable. That way you can break it down to what I call “reduce it to the ridiculous.” If you know you want to earn $250,000 a year, you know that is about $20,000 per month. That’s just one flip every other month or 2 – 3 wholesale deals per month where I live.
One of the things I’ve learned is this: Successful people set their goals quickly and make adjustments as they go along. Just like successful people make decisions quickly, they don’t vacillate in indecision or get mixed up in a funk of negativity.

Goals Must Be Believable

Remember this, your goals must be believable – by you – or you will not pay the price. They must be believable, and they must be just out of your reach, but you must know you can reach them if you really strive to do it.

Goals Must Be Congruent

Your goals must be congruent with your actions. You cannot set a goal to work harder, longer hours AND a goal to spend more time with your family. Those are not congruent. Goals must be congruent with your actions.

Visualize What You Want

If you see yourself as already having achieved the goal, you will trick your mind and your mind sees the goal as already having been achieved. It’s called, “Fake it ’til you make it.” I used to do this all the time by creating a “dream folder” with pictures of all the things I wanted, right down to the car, house, and woman. (Ok, I didn’t get Farah Fawcett… but I got BETTER!)
Just take a minute or two each day and think about life as it is with your goals already accomplished. It’s really easy when you get used to it.

Work Your Goals

The next thing you want to do is work your goals – work on the priority that moves you closer to your goals every day. Plan your week carefully, focusing on what the late Stephen Covey called “Big Rocks.”
The big rocks are the most difficult things to do mentally (not physically) that produce large results.  If you wanted to fill a bucket with big rocks, small rocks, and sand, you need to put the big rocks in FIRST. If you don’t plan, the sand fills in first, and the big rocks don’t fit.

Number Your Goals

Number your goals in the order of importance. Not only is the goal important, but so is the reason. Sure you want a car, but why do you want the car? Sure you want more money, but why do you want money?
You want to be able to spend more time with your family, you want to be able to travel, you want to buy a Hummer, and you want to have an ocean front condo or send your children to the best college.
Whatever it is, the reason must be there. The reason is more important than the goal itself.

Review, Monitor, Make Adjustments

Another thing you need to do is review, monitor, and make adjustments on your goals. You have to be flexible.
Some things are not going to happen. You have to face that, but you need to strive continuously to get better every day.
If you will work harder on yourself than you do your job, you’ll always be growing. Remember that last sentence and write it down. It’s worth repeating.

The Goals Must Have a Deadline

As I mentioned first, your goals must have a deadline. A goal without a deadline is just a dream. When beginning to set your goals, I want you to set your goals in four basic areas:

1. Financial Goals

You’ll set goals based on income, equity or net worth, and cash flow. All of these are financial goals and easily measurable.  Don’t get overwhelmed with the numbers, though. Focus instead on the short-term, intermediate goals that will result in long-term success.
For example, if you want to make $25,000 on a particular type of deal within a month, focus on how many calls you need to make a day to find such a deal.

2. Health Goals

If you don’t feel good, chances are that you’re not working at your maximum capacity. So, I want you to set some health goals to stay healthy. Remember “an apple a day”? What if this is right, and you’re not doing it?
Start small, though. Don’t try to tackle all of these at once, but you need to be healthy, not only for you but for your family as well.

3. Family Goals

Set family goals. What is an example of a family goal? Maybe you want to take four vacations a year. Maybe you want to visit a new state, three times a year or five times a year. Maybe you want to go see the Grandparents two or three times a year. You get the point.

4. Faith Goals

You need to set some spiritual goals, some faith goals. Without faith, life will beat you up, eat you up, and spit you out. Remember, all the “crap” that comes at you is nothing but fertilizer for the harvest about to come.

5. Surround Yourself

Another thing I want you to think about is the people you associate with. Take a minute and think about this. If you think about your ten closest friends’ annual salary and divide it by ten, that’s pretty close to what you make.
I’m not telling you to get rid of your friends. All I’m saying is that with whom you associate is whom you are like, so please keep that in mind. Don’t get rid of your friends. Just get some more that are where YOU want to be in the future.
As you can see, setting goals in real estate investing takes some work, mental discipline, and THINKING (which is why so few people do it).
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By William Bronchick, J.D.

I am a real estate attorney with 25 years of experience. I am an investor myself so I am very in touch with current laws,needs & issues in real estate.