Posted on: November 28, 2019

Have you been wanting to take your wholesaling business to the next level but don’t know how? Listening to today’s episode would be a good place to start!

Today’s special guest is TTP (Talk to People) program’s top guy, Brandon Barnes. Aside from being TTP’s top performer, Brandon is the owner of Mighty Estates Holdings, Inc., the co-founder of B&M Property Solutions, and the operator of the REI Live! Atlanta monthly meet up.

Brandon has graced the podcast 2 years ago, back when he was still developing the proactive business philosophy. However much has happened since then. Today, Brandon is now the owner of a successful wholesaling business that generates almost a million dollars annually!

If you’re in the lookout for that secret sauce that can take your wholesaling business forward, you can’t miss today’s episode. Brandon not only shared his inspiring journey, he also shared several tips and insights that can help take your wholesaling business to the next level!

Key Takeaways

  • How he transitioned from doing the cold calls himself to having a competent team do things for him
  • What an “employee mindset” is
  • Why it’s crucial to find the right employees
  • What to look for in employees
  • How he found his employees
  • How he filtered out applicants and made sure he hired the right people
  • What he considers the toughest part of the business
  • How he trained people on valuations
  • The importance of having an employee that’s in for the long haul
  • What his REI Live! Atlanta is about and how people can learn more about it
  • The evolution he went through
  • Why it pays to automate things


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Episode Transcription

Brett Daniels: Welcome everybody to the Wholesaling Inc. podcast. I’m your host, Brett Daniels, and if this is your first time listening to this podcast, welcome, you have stumbled upon the number one podcast when it comes to wholesaling real estate. If you are one of our loyal Rhino Tribe members that listen to every single episode, welcome back. We love you. You guys send us so many comments. You reach out to us through social media, through email, and tell us the successes that you guys are having. And we absolutely love it. That’s what we do this for. This channel is about instruction. This podcast is about giving you the action items that you need to be able to be successful and you are going out there and doing it. So congratulations. Now I get this question all the time. Everybody wants to know who is your TTP top guy, right?

Brett Daniels: Somebody that has taken your program, implemented it into their market, into their business, and it has just exploded. Well, it is my absolute pleasure to introduce the number one top performer when it comes to the TTP program. And that is Mr. Brandon Barnes from Atlanta. Say hello to everybody.

Brandon Barnes: Hey, how’s it going? How’s it going, man? Thanks for having me back on.

Brett Daniels: This is incredible. So we did a podcast two years ago-

Brandon Barnes: Right.

Brett Daniels: And you were just getting going, just starting to talk to people, just developing that proactive business philosophy, right?

Brandon Barnes: Right.

Brett Daniels: And so take us back because before that, I mean, you were wholesaling, you were passionate about real estate. You were doing some deals. Take us from two years ago to where you’re at now, where you’re running your business.

Brandon Barnes: Yeah.

Brett Daniels: I mean you’re pretty much hands off.

Brandon Barnes: And that’s the goal. Two years ago, I believe at that time, I was still the only one making the goal call.

Brett Daniels: Yep.

Brandon Barnes: And then you know, that’s tough because at that point I’m trying to call and follow up and do deals and put deals together via calls and attorneys and meeting with sellers and tenants. And it was rough.

Brett Daniels: Yeah.

Brandon Barnes: I think at that point I had maybe done [inaudible] and just TCB call deals. You fast forward, you know, we’re blasting through $1 million in revenue this year and I haven’t talked to anybody.

Brett Daniels: Right!

Brandon Barnes: So it’s amazing how quickly that turned around.

Brett Daniels: Well, and let’s talk about that because this is really important. You have people that are starting out, either they hear these podcasts or the YouTube channel. Or if you’re listening to this, make sure you go to the YouTube channel at Brett Daniels’ real estate, check us out. You can see us. But they take the instruction, they start using it, and they start getting deals. But taking it to the next level where you take yourself out of it; when you’re actually delegating the responsibility of these daily conversations to somebody else, that’s where people have some problems. So walk us through what you did from the transition from “I’m making these calls every day” to now “I feel comfortable pushing it off to somebody else the engine of your lead generation”.

Brandon Barnes: Right. Well, I mean first off, I have to double back and thank you. You know, because very early on, I called and said, “Hey, how did you get this going?”

Brett Daniels: Yeah.

Brandon Barnes: And the first thing that you said was, “You know, you hire people”. And they were American. Native Americans and able to, you know, reach out and have a really good conversation. So that’s the route that I took.

Brett Daniels: Yeah.

Brandon Barnes: I know a lot of people use VA’s, but I took that route and I stuck with it and you gave me, you know, how to pay them now, how much to pay them, where to find them, the script, and everything. And again, I appreciate that.

Brett Daniels: Yeah.

Brandon Barnes: But you know, it was all kind of trial and error. I mean we went through six to eight cold callers that first year.

Brett Daniels: Yeah.

Brandon Barnes: You know, I was a little hardheaded. Originally told me $20 an hour and I tried to be cheap and pay $15 an hour. And, you know, exactly what you said. I saw a different caliber of the employee once I actually got going, if they were independent contractors at the time. But my team is now W2 employees these days and we’re able to attract better quality folks.

Brett Daniels: Incredible.

Brandon Barnes: So it starts with that, you know, spending the money, investing the time and finding people that have an employee mindset. People that you know are willing to learn and develop. Very coachable and they’re just pouring into them. And for me it took a while to kind of hone my leadership style. But it was trial and error. Getting the playbook and I just took it and ran with it. I learned from my mistakes, I learned from the fires.

Brett Daniels: Yep.

Brandon Barnes: I started to hire a little slower and fire a little quicker.

Brett Daniels: Yep.

Brandon Barnes: But we have now two cold callers that have been with us for over a year. One has been there for two years-

Brett Daniels: Awesome.

Brandon Barnes: And she’s a rock star. She’s a grinder. So it was kind of trial and error and then just really making sure that I place emphasis on finding the right people. Or buying quality people that are coachable.

Brett Daniels: So a couple things that really stuck out there. You said find people that have an employee mindset, right? And I think that this absolutely critical when you’re hiring people to make these calls for you, right? Because what happens is naturally people hear about what you’re doing, right? They hear about the success that you’re having and they want to be a part of it. Let me make calls for you, Brandon, let me make these calls for you to, I want to do it. I want to start out at the bottom and learn it, right? And then these people make calls for you. They do good and then they start their own business.

Brandon Barnes: Right.

Brett Daniels: So you’ve got constant turnover.

Brandon Barnes: For sure.

Brett Daniels: Which is fine. Which is great for them and I encourage it. But if you want to keep people long-term, you want to train them and actually see the fruits of your efforts on training them, you need to keep them around a while and you’re saying it all comes down to what their employee mindset is.

Brandon Barnes: Right, it’s a season. That could be helpful for people. There are folks that I will encourage to, you know, partner up and find somebody that can help them if they don’t have the budget to go out and spend $20 an hour. There’s a season for that when you’re trying to get going and find somebody that just wants to help out make calls. But if you’re really trying to turn into a business today, you got to go find the right employees today that want to be an employee and dive in with you for the long haul so that everything that’s important to them, you’re getting back and getting a great return on your investment over time.

Brandon Barnes: So we tried that. There were, you know, a few people that came onboard. I think I had somebody that had Solar Insurance on the side. I had [inaudible 00:10:22] personal trainer on the side and they, you know, they had different interests. They were entrepreneurial and I found out over time they just don’t make the best teammates on your team over the long haul. So you’ve got to find somebody. And, you know personally, we’ve had good experience with people that are a little bit more seasoned, if you will, that come from the old school that aren’t looking to job hop. They just want a nice consistent paycheck.

Brett Daniels: Get their hours. Get their paycheck. Lives their lives. Now are you hiring people that are local? Are they in the United States? Where are these people?

Brandon Barnes: My acquisition manager, and we can get to this in a sec, lives in Mexico. But he’s an ex Pat. Everybody, you know, English is their first language because I think that they-

Brett Daniels: They grew up here. They live here. They’re Americans living in a different country. So when you say ex pat. Ex patriot, right?

Brandon Barnes: So that’s the acquisition manager. Our prospectors. I mean we have one in Seattle, one in Louisville, one in Illinois, and another in San Diego.

Brett Daniels: How’d you find them?

Brandon Barnes: Indeed.

Brett Daniels: Indeed?

Brandon Barnes: Yeah.

Brett Daniels: Really?

Brandon Barnes: Yeah.

Brett Daniels: Wow. So you posted the job posts on Indeed and these people… How did you filter these people out to make sure that they were the right people for you?

Brandon Barnes: Yeah, so we took them through, you know, kind of the gauntlet and [inaudible 00:11:40] talks about where they have to follow instructions on how they apply for the job.

Brett Daniels: Right.

Brandon Barnes: And then we actually ask for audio or video submission of them reading a script at the least. And then the next step is, you know, schedule some time with me and then we’ll do a two day paid audition.

Brett Daniels: Wow.

Brandon Barnes: We’ll give them a script. We’ll give them some training. Funny thing is, back in the day I used to give them your training-

Brett Daniels: Of course.

Brandon Barnes: Hey, you know that was what I used to learn. So that was kind of their training and then we let them dial for a day, three hours. They talk to me for a little bit beforehand. I listen to their their first day overnight and then I give them some feedback on day two. I let them dial again for a few more hours. Then if they’ve gotten better or they seem like they’d be a good fit, we’ll invite them on. But it also gives them a chance to see if it’s a good fit for them.

Brett Daniels: Right.

Brandon Barnes: Right, because there’s people that’ll get that first, you know, [inaudible 00:12:35] and say, “I’m done”.

Brett Daniels: That’s a light response. [crosstalk 00:12:39] I mean, some of them are brutal. Yeah I get, I get, I get it. But it’s really interesting because all my callers are Americans living in Costa Rica and you talk about the employee mindset. I’ve had the same callers for years now because there’s literally no other jobs for them in Costa Rica. Right. If you move to Costa Rica and you’re not like already retired and independently wealthy, you’ve got to work. But it’s paradise. They want to stay there, they want to live there. It’s very easy for them to go there from the United States. But there’s not a lot of opportunities. It’s a socialist country, right? So you have to find unique opportunities. So they have a couple options. They can either do customer service, which is just a nightmare all with a phone and a call center. Or they can make outbound calls for real estate investors and sourcing real estate opportunities. So I use that, the company called Motivated Sellers out there, if you want to check them out, and they hooked me in with these people. But it’s the employee mindset.

Brett Daniels: They show up, they put the hours in. If these people were in Phoenix, there’s no way. I’m telling you, I’ve had over 60 people that I’ve had in Phoenix come through over the last six years of doing this because they want to come in and they want to try it. But then it’s just not, you know, they’re soft. It’s not that they’re soft because that’s a personality. They’re looking for a better opportunity.

Brandon Barnes: It makes sense. There’s just so much more opportunity out there.

Brett Daniels: Right.

Brandon Barnes: And that gets me to my lead manager. Something that we’ve done, I originally wasn’t a believer in this because I came up.. You know, Tom Rowland and yourself where you go and you talk to a motivated seller and you’re belly to belly and you’re locking up the deal in-person. But we have some good advice. I think the [inaudible 00:14:27], they were doing the virtual thing even in their market. Our acquisition manager, now our lead manager, was originally a prospector. He was the one in Mexico dialing into the U.S. A former Marine so he’s able to connect a lot of people.

Brett Daniels: Sure.

Brandon Barnes: It was so good.

Brett Daniels: Disciplined.

Brandon Barnes: He was disciplined. He was going after higher education when you got a master’s. He put himself through something online. Right, because he is in Mexico. And he was coachable and so I saw that in him. I promoted him to acquisition manager and he’s locking up two contracts each and every week at a bare minimum and we’re doing good things with that.

Brett Daniels: Incredible.

Brandon Barnes: All he’s doing is just falling up. He’s taking people through the script, you know, at another level. He’s having longer conversations with them. And then he sends them an offer.

Brett Daniels: So how does this work? Let’s look at this like a funnel or like a process map, right? So you get a list, right? So you get a list of distress properties, whatever it is, right? Drive for dollars, tax default, pre-foreclosure, whatever. It’s endless. Right?

Brandon Barnes: Right.

Brett Daniels: Code violations. You then take that list and you get the phone numbers, right? You get, you skip trace them, right? Who do you use to skiptrace?

Brandon Barnes: LexisNexis.

Brett Daniels: Okay, LexisNexis. So you have your own account. Awesome. So then it goes to your dialer, right? What dialer are you using?

Brandon Barnes: Mojo.

Brett Daniels: Using Mojo Sells. Okay. And then they make those calls. You’ve got people around the country making this call and then you get a lead and that lead goes to…

Brandon Barnes: Our leads then go to a group that stays in Mojo.

Brett Daniels: Okay, I love it. Yeah.

Brandon Barnes: So our prospector is going through… If it’s a lead, they group them as a lead also, maybe? Yes. They set up a follow up for my lead manager.

Brett Daniels: Okay.

Brandon Barnes: So he comes in every day and he’s just looking at the calendar and dialing through all the phones.

Brett Daniels: Got it.

Brandon Barnes: He is power dialing on those phones. So instead of like a cyclical process: prospector gets a lease, sends it over to [inaudible 00:16:25] pick up a handout there. They’re instead grouping them in Mojo, setting a follow up tasks for him. He gets to power dial that list straight out of the calendar in Mojo.

Brett Daniels: And your lead manager is located where?

Brandon Barnes: In Mexico.

Brett Daniels: In Mexico. This is your guy. This is your acquisition manager. Okay, got it.

Brandon Barnes: So what I’ve done with them is I spend a lot of time with them. I went over the map. I’ve showed them how to comp properties multiple different ways, whether that’s fix and flip, I’m old and he’s just looking for lighthouses and if he finds a calm, it takes 20K off of that and that’s his MAO. and he’s going to anchor Lord.

Brett Daniels: But what’s MAO?

Brandon Barnes: Maximum allowable offer.

Brett Daniels: So M-A-O.

Brandon Barnes: Yeah.

Brett Daniels: Right? There’s not like a “y”, right? Right. So just to clear that up. So that’s an interesting point because in my business it is very difficult to train people on evaluations, right? It is. I mean we anchor low obviously as much as possible, but once it gets into the nitty gritty, how did you train them on… And maybe people that are just starting out and getting used to this. The toughest part when you start out is: Is this deal or no deal and then how big of a deal is it, right?

Brandon Barnes: That is absolutely the toughest part.

Brett Daniels: It is.

Brandon Barnes: I mean even for myself [inaudible 00:17:50].

Brett Daniels: I know. Yeah.

Brandon Barnes: The biggest thing is that he was trainable. He was coachable, he was bright, he was-

Brett Daniels: So is this something that you do like online or [crosstalk 00:17:52]?

Brandon Barnes: So yes, sharing screen. So anytime he has a deal that he’s iffy on, we’ll hop on a screen share and then we’ll just look at the map on Zillow together. We’ll click through properties and really try to find a similar comp property or a property that is similar to that. So we’re looking for another home with a similar square footage, similar age, structure that’s sold as is. So whether it’s sold move-in ready as a rental, you can kind of get a feel from the pictures, or if it’s sold as a fully renovated property I’m going to look at the price history and see what it sold at before that. Every property doesn’t have that data, but you can kind of get a feel for what was that sales price to be invested. And from that-

Brett Daniels: What are the buyers actually spending on?

Brandon Barnes: Exactly, that’s all we’re looking for. That’s all we’re concerned with. We’re not worry about repairs as much because it’s a volume business. If we make offers where our maximum allowable offers 20K less than what we think it will sell for, then we should win. When we do enough of that, there are offers that will stick and that’s our thing.

Brandon Barnes: We do it through DocuSign. The VA takes care of sending the offers. He just set a task for them and he keeps on dialing.

Brett Daniels: Love it. So what I did with my now disposition manager Billy Bells is I would pull 10 addresses that were tough to comp, right? And I’d send it to him and then I would comp them and then he would comp them and then we’d look at the notes and I tell him this is why I think that this is the price, right? And he’d say why he thinks this is the price. So I did that week after week after week after week til he knew my brain. He knew the opportunity cause sometimes comps aren’t just what it is. Sometimes it’s supply and demand in some areas and you need to understand that, listen, I can lock this up higher. There’s nothing lower than this on the market, so people are going to go after it.

Brandon Barnes: Like you said, it’s trying to get your acquisition manager, your team member to think like you. To see it as you would, if that is your specialty. You bring up a great point. There are different factors. It’s not always just the repair and the square footage. It may be the school zone or it may be the seasonality. What point of the year it is.

Brett Daniels: Historic houses versus… You know what I mean?

Brandon Barnes: Exactly, there’s so many things and so it’s just spending that time with them. I wasn’t as structured as you [crosstalk 00:20:20]. We did it on a one off. We use a communication platform and our company uses Slack. So anything he has a question for, every day we’re looking at a property or so together and I’m giving him some feedback. He’s taking notes and you just have to keep pouring into them. And that’s why it’s important to have an employee, somebody that’s going to be here for the long haul. Because if I spent all that time with him and he’s just going to turn around and jump ship next month, I’ve lost. So much time and energy. So it’s just, it was, like I said, just pouring that time to help him see things as I would.

Brett Daniels: Well, I love him. He’s in New Mexico.

Brandon Barnes: I know.

Brett Daniels: What’s he going to do to start his own company? Do you know what I mean? Like that’s a huge thing. He’s in Mexico. He wants to live there. That’s the lifestyle he wants, but he wants to also work with you. You provide this perfect opportunity. He wants to keep this job because of the employee mindset and I think that’s huge.

Brandon Barnes: The coolest part is that he’s actually training our new hires. He’s listening to their calls.

Brett Daniels: Honestly, how much time do you spend in your wholesaling business?

Brandon Barnes: These days…

Brett Daniels: A week?

Brandon Barnes: Not much at all. Five hours.

Brett Daniels: Five hours a week?

Brandon Barnes: And you’re going to do over $1 million this year?

Brett Daniels: Yes, for sure. We’re already close to eight.

Brandon Barnes: That is what I’m talking… And not only that, you’re really unique because now in Atlanta you’re like the hub of bringing all the best real estate investors together, right? Talk to me about your meetup.

Brett Daniels: So REI live Atlanta, we’ve actually kind of just kicked that off this year. Been great events. We had great turnout. The whole focus is to bring a great quality speaker and national speaker, a national coach such as yourself, each every month. And it’s just one meetup a month where we’re looking to give people the members value. Educate them and instruct them how to act and make money in real estate. And so this is the monthly meetup that we’re doing and people can check it out.

Brandon Barnes: It’s incredible. Honestly, if you’re listening to this, watching this, if you’re in Atlanta you’ve got to… How do people find out about it? Go to “I am B. Barnes” on Instagram or Facebook and you’ll see the link there. “I am B. Barnes”, right?

Brett Daniels: Yeah. Probably have put it in the show notes or hashtag REI Live Atlanta is a way that they can kind of see… You know, we do all the polls with that same hashtag, so they’ll see all the events that are coming out.

Brett Daniels: I’m telling you. I’m here in Atlanta now and we had the event last night. I can’t tell you how many people came up and told me that they were doing deals. I mean literally in the mix of doing deals and, you know, you’d go to some of these meetup groups or some of these real estate investor associations and it’s a lot of people that come around but they’re not doing deals. This is not that. This group has amazing energy to it. They’re doing deals. They’re extremely welcoming. So if you’re in Atlanta, it is a must do. Must go to these meetings once a month.

Brandon Barnes: We had a full capacity crowd. 150 people here last night. So it’s a great event. And again, I’m just trying to kind of give back the same way that you gave back to me. I can instruct other people how to make money in real estate.

Brett Daniels: So tell people starting out or they’re doing a few deals, but they haven’t taken leap to where, you know, they’ve got that seven figure business. What evolution did you go through from the guy that was making 80,000 a year doing this to the guy making a million?

Brandon Barnes: Yeah. The the biggest point, and I’ve said this a few times, is I had to fire myself. I had to get out of my own way. I think there’s a great book called Fire Yourself. A guy talked about that. That was a book that I read around that period and it was like, “I just got to take the plunge and go on and get out of my own way”.

Brandon Barnes: Because once I take myself out of the business so I can focus on it, then all the business operations… They still need to be working without me because they’re going to be getting done at a much heavier pace without me because I’m going to be scattered at so many different directions. So firing myself as acquisition manager, that was the biggest step because then the followup…I’ll tell you this, it was a good week back in this time, you know a year or two ago, if I made 10 offers in one week where our target is 50 each and every week. Once we get that followup automated, the deals are in the database. Everybody knows that. Once you get that automated, you should be able to take off.

Brett Daniels: Yeah.

Brandon Barnes: No, honestly.

Brett Daniels: Well it’s building up that momentum, but most importantly it’s building your lead pipeline to where now you get that consistency every single month that you’re closing because timelines are different for everybody. That’s why you got to pack it all in. Then also you have to remember, you have to see how many leads or offers you need to make to get a deal. Because once you get that deal, it doesn’t just replace one lead that you have. It replaces whatever it is. You need 20 leads to get a deal. You got to get 20 more leads to get another deal. Right? It’s not one to one. It’s like one to 20 or 50 or whatever it is, so it’s just knowing the numbers there.

Brandon Barnes: And look, I discount that. I always tell people about the acquisition manager part, the following up, because I know that the leads are going to be there. That’s on autopilot. That’s because of TTP. Because we have no issue generating leads and because of your proven system. I just kind of take that for granted almost sure. But I mean if the viewers aren’t talking to people on a regular basis, then you got to start cause that’s just going to automate that lead generation. And then that followup is really where I’ve really focused our attention. Following up and making offers, that’s when we kind of took off because most people with the TTP place… You know, everything else is gravy. So, you know…

Brett Daniels: Number one guy here. Number one. I love it. Thank you so much for being on the podcast as always. People reach out to you. Is it best through Instagram?

Brandon Barnes: Yes, yes at “I am the Barnes”. That’s the best way to find me.

Brett Daniels: Beautiful. Awesome. And if you guys are interested in joining the most proactive group in real estate investing, go to Scroll down, keep scrolling and scrolling and scrolling because you’re going to go through dozens of testimonials. Nobody has more testimonials on success stories than TTP. If it feels good in your gut, then press the button, sign up for a call. It’ll be the best call of the year for you. I look forward to working with you personally, and as always, I encourage everybody out there to talk to people. Until next time, guys, see ya.

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