It’s not typical to earn $15,000 in just 2 weeks, but today’s guest has done just that!
Taylor Berg was laid off from his job as a tradesman due to COVID, and that was the pivotal moment for him to find something better. He discovered wholesaling in March 2020 and had no prior experience in sales or real estate, but he made it work. So far, he has closed 9 deals this year.
In today’s episode, Taylor will talk us through all of his deals, the prospects he was able to acquire from a single trip, and the intricate process of doing business outside of your market. He will also share his experiences with JV partners.
From Losing Your Job In The Middle Of COVID To Closing 9 Wholesale Deals With Taylor Berg
I’m sitting down with one of our students. We have a Taylor Berg with us. He’s crushing it now. He’s going through the transition of the whole business model and setting up the systems and everything that’s in play but he’s right in the middle of the trenches. This is going to be a very interesting episode here for us. You started wholesaling during the month of COVID-19. For some reason, you picked that month as the right month to start pivoting to something else.
I learned about it in March 2020. I got laid off from a job I was on as a Union Tradesman here in New York City. It was outside the city so I heard about it and I was really in between because there are a lot of unknowns about what was going to happen with the market. I almost took my foot off the pedal but I didn’t.
It’s a good thing you didn’t because now, you see the results. You joined the TTP Program with Brent Daniels back in March 2021 and then you started closing deals. Up to this point, you’ve closed nine deals over a span of a year as a solo operation with you doing everything and all the work.
When I learned about wholesaling and I was telling everybody this, I was hypnotized by it. There was no question in my mind that it was definitely well over a six-figure income. I couldn’t do it. I knew that there were better things for me in the growth, the growth mindset and everything that goes along with being an entrepreneur. I had no idea what I was doing but for me and for a lot of other people, there’s no other option.
Do you mean there was no other option as to once you get a taste of it, you go into it all in and there’s no turning back? Is there something else?
It’s knowing that there are bigger things for me. There’s a ceiling for me as a Union Tradesman and in here, I’m the one who gets to say when I get to go on lunch break and for how long, how much money I can make. The opportunities, you can’t even really compare it.
Nine deals later, you know that it’s something real. It’s something that can give you that lifestyle that you’re looking for. It’s just a matter of making it sustainable. You closed two deals. You’re almost nonchalant about it like, “I got a deal closed. I got this other thing in the pipeline. I got this and that,” but it didn’t use to be that way especially when you got started. It took a while to get to that point of belief but things become real after one point and then you want to upgrade. You want to level up.
You want to do something better to fine-tune it and then reach out for that level of freedom that you’re looking for. In this case, closing two deals in a span of two weeks, it’s not a bad gig. Is that something that you had pictured when you first got in? Was it always a firm belief that you were going to get to the point where you’re doing this stuff?
I had been doing this all on my own. I’ve been doing paper follow-ups, no systems. I’m the only one cold calling. I’m calling cold calling a minimum of six hours a day, which I think was really good for me because up until I joined your program, I was doing everything on my own. For some reason, I had this irrational confidence that everybody else can do it so why can’t I? I didn’t know how and when but now that it’s happening, I did have irrational confidence about it. 2 in 2 weeks wasn’t a clear vision for me.
Congratulations on that. Tell us about the deals. How did those come about? It’s wonderful to see the progress that you’re making, especially in the face of adversity. You’re in the process of transitioning and 1) It’s hard to release control. 2) It’s harder when you plug people into something to alleviate some of that load off your back. Oftentimes, you don’t know how to delegate it. You don’t know what to tell them to do. That’s a big problem and you’re in the middle of that.
We’re fine-tuning all that stuff as we go but the emotional constraints are still there where you have to come in and then figure things out. You’re going through that now. You’re getting deals done as you’re going through the process, you’re plugging people in and slowly getting your time and freedom to the point where you want it to be. You closed two deals and I want to really dive into those.
That deal closed on June 22nd, 2021. That was a pretty interesting one. This one was a virtual deal. My wife is from Massachusetts and we were going up there. She was visiting her with her friends something was going on and so I knew that this was coming. I ordered a box of 100 bandit signs for $99, brought them with me and I dropped her off at her friend’s house. I drove around the whole day and I put 100 of them up.
I had a few calls and this guy named Jean called me and I knew it was a good lead right away. His problem was he started fixing it up and getting pretty close to done but he had a successful HVAC heating and cooling system so it’s primetime for his business. He didn’t have time to fix it up anymore. He wanted to sell it. He wanted a cash sale. He was losing money on it in paying taxes.
All this is happening but it’s not even your market. If that’s not tenacity, I don’t know what is.
Let’s go on a trip, drop a whole bunch of bandit signs and see what happens. How did you negotiate the deal?
Houses just keep getting worse the longer they sit vacant.
Massachusetts is an attorney state as well but I didn’t have an attorney there. I didn’t have anything there so I had a little one-page contract that I downloaded a long time ago. Let’s at least lock him up and then I googled cash for your house Leominster, Massachusetts and a few guys popped up. I interviewed a few of them and I’m like, “I found a couple of guys that seem legit who had good reviews.”
I called a guy named Anwar. He had a good and strong buyers list. He’s been doing deals and has been doing this for years. We got in JV and the deal got a little bit hairy because the seller, I’m not sure exactly what happened, ended up wanting more money. He wanted to cancel the deal. I thought we lost it. We ended up paying him $10,000 more.
We had him locked up at $150,000. We ended up amending the contract to $160,000 and we sold it for $172,000 straight. It was a double close. I drove out there and something got messed up with the mail. I ended up having to drive out there last-minute about three and a half hours late to the closing table and I got my check.
You double closed on this deal. You got it at $150,000 and then you push it up to $160,000 so it ended up being a $12,000 deal. Out of a trip and bandit signs. That is not a bad gig. When you’re focused and thinking about doing this and you actually get the commitment to do it and wrap your head around it, you’re going to see opportunities as they pop up. A couple of other students in the tribe also have been to the beach and then taking trips here and there and they’re like, “I’m in the area. I’m going to do a quick little drive-by.” Next thing you know, you have a lead. You have a prospect. You just got to know how to tackle it. $12,000 and then you JV’ed the deal with somebody who didn’t have a buyers list in the area, understandably. Did you do a 50/50 split?
Yes, we did a 50/50 split. I didn’t have an attorney. I didn’t have a closing company. I didn’t have a buyers list. It ended up being about $4,700 net to me off of a $100 box of bandit signs.
You didn’t have to go through the process of dispo. Also, the workload is not there on that side. Basically, you got the deal, you locked it up and then you pushed it up over to somebody else to do the closing and handle everything else. Two people ate from that deal, you and the JV guy.
He took a lot of the workload off of me. He did a lot of the negotiation and he found the buyer too. It was a little bit hairy there a couple of times like every deal pretty much it seems like but it was a fun deal.
I’ve been in this for years and I’ve never had the same deal twice. There’s always something different. The principles are the same but you’ve got to know how to adopt them. That’s part of the game. It’s part of the challenge. That’s one. What was the other deal that you closed? Did you close on the eight?
That one was on the $8,000 in Cape Cod’s first vacation I’ve taken in forever. It was all taken care of. I had JV’ed with this one too because this one was pretty close.
You were in Cape Cod. You were on vacation when the deal closed. Is that when you got the notification that, “It’s recorded and then all set.”
I was in Cape Cod.
How’s that for a game-changer? You got to count your wins. Recognize the wins. That’s a big and huge win right there.
I have such tunnel vision but you’re right. That is a big win.
Even if you’re going 1,000 miles an hour, you have to stop and smell the roses. Recognize the wins and treat yourself when you know you’re doing well. Those little moments bring joy. How did that lead come about?
This one was pretty crazy. This one started late February or early March 2021. I just got done reading the book Profit First by Mike Michalowicz. When I first started, I had Mojo Dialer. I didn’t know what I was doing so I was putting everybody in the no bucket that wasn’t selling at $0.50 or $0.60 on a dollar. I knew that there were probably some good leads in there. I went into the filters. I put, “Haven’t talked to in 180 days,” and I went back because I didn’t have money for the marketing.
I started calling people in that no bucket and it was the 2nd or 3rd day, I got ahold of the guy named Solu. He told me the notes of the same price, the same everything, the market had gone up and I’m like, “There’s probably something here,” but this, again is a little bit outside my market. This was pretty close to the city but it was cookie-cutter, raised ranch and in a subdivision. I was like, “I know what this is even worth.” It has been vacant for a year and a half. He’s an investor. He didn’t want to fix it up. He didn’t want to deal with it. He has other businesses so he wanted a cash deal.
I got him down. He wanted $330,000 and I got him down to $305,000. I had called this pretty big wholesaling company that’s closer to the city. I’m 75 miles North of the city. Once you get closer to New York City, it’s a different market so I called them. I said, “What do you guys want to do? It’s a deal for sure,” so we worked together. We got him lower on price.
We locked it up and he wanted a huge deposit so there are a couple of things there. I ended up just agreeing because the guys that I was doing the JV with didn’t know if they wanted to rehab it themselves or wholesale it. He wanted 10% down for deposit and I was not in a position for that so I said, “Let’s do $10,000.” It was a long deal. It took a while but we solved these problems. He didn’t want to fix it up. He wanted out. Houses keep getting worse the longer they sit there vacant.
Especially when supply and demand are tight in an active area like that. Here’s the thing. You don’t have to have a magically solid buyers list. You can always team up. You can always level up with somebody else who has already done that work for you and still crush it like you’re doing now. Of course, this happens for a while until you build up your own buyers list and then you keep the whole nut but it’s perfectly fine to share the wealth, especially if they’re relieving some of that work for you as well. Did they end up putting the EMD, Earnest Money Deposit on this? Was it a 50/50 split? How did it work? What were the numbers?
They ended up wholesaling it. They made a little bit more but not much. They made $15,000 and I made $10,000.
You made $10,000 on the deal that was a dead lead. You’re talking $15,000 over a span of two weeks that got paid. It’s not bad for a two-week payday especially when you’re out there enjoying yourself. I love it. Not everything happens at the close of escrow. There is a lot of work that you put into this deal. There was a lot of trial and error that you went through.
Sourcing the leads, going out there and doing the bandit signs just out of plain, blind faith, it’s what took you to that first spot. That first spot is going to take you to that second spot. The second spot is going to bring you somebody else and have a new connection. You build up a new connection with a new one. Now, you have buyers and in both of these places, which are not even your market so if something comes along your way, you know exactly who to go to.
You had the knowledge and the know-how of putting a deal together and structuring it in a way that it would payout. 2 people or 2 companies taking profits from the same deal is a wonderful thing. A lot of people don’t want to tap into the JV stuff but at the end of the day, it can be due to a scarcity mindset. They’re like, “Why would I JV with somebody when I can take the whole thing?” That’s fine and dandy if you have a fully operating business, buyers lists and all the resources. If you don’t, it’s perfectly fine to team up with somebody else and then again, share the wealth.
Keep faith in what you are doing. If you put in the reps, do the work, and keep walking in one direction, you will inevitably get there.
It’s going to put you in a better spot. There are a couple of interesting things that happened on that deal. The first one being you would have lost it if you hadn’t called that no list, which takes me on a side note of dequalifying. Sometimes we’ll dequalify a lead just because we don’t have the right structure in place and that’s dangerous because you’re leaving money on the table literally. That’s one. The second thing that happened, you would have lost the deal if you hadn’t had somebody to bring in the cash and then close it or do the EMD.
You would’ve never gotten the same contract in place. You did so that’s awesome. $15,000 over a span of two weeks on payouts. It doesn’t happen over that two-week period. There is a lot of work that happens behind it. The cool thing about it is that everything’s getting stacked. I always talk about stacking the deck.
Your actions are stacking up. Your leads are stacking up. Your follow-ups are stacking up. The more you call, the more you start to build a foundation and then next thing you know, all the deals start popping. You have no deals, it’s dry and then you get hit with 2 or 3 at the same time. If you build a machine and stay consistent, that can be a new reality. That can be the new normal.
I want to say too about the JV. Especially starting out, I didn’t have any sales, marketing or real estate experience at all. Absolutely zero and it’s intimidating not knowing if it’s a deal and how much they’re going to take. If I can give the seller the confidence, if I can come up with the money or if I can have a buyer that I can perform on this without really knowing if it’s a deal. At the beginning like you were saying, sharing that a little bit is because otherwise, I know before I was doing the JVs and everything, I would procrastinate on calling some of these hot leads or warm leads back, at least because I didn’t know if it was a deal.
I didn’t know if I could perform. I didn’t want to tell him something and then have to have a conversation later saying, “I told you this and you made these plans.” For me anyway, it helped me gain confidence to be able to start doing them on my own too. That was really big. Another thing too is having somebody like you. I could never ever imagine doing this without having somebody to navigate me because now, I’m going through all these changes and I’ve called you a couple of times pulling my hair out, super stressed out and trying to breathe deeply.
It’s so much weight and you were saying unclarity on the next step and if it’s going to have results. It’s been like this. There are moments of clarity but there are also lots of moments without clarity, having that and having somebody like you and Brent too with this transition of me turning it into a business rather than a side hustle is so challenging.
I have no idea what I’m doing. I’m tripping and stumbling and I have you to keep me on course, which is 1,000% necessary so that’s where I’m at now. It’s really scary and stressful. There are times when I’m not doing everything I should because I don’t know exactly how to do it but I keep taking action whether it’s right or wrong. I know that if I do the reps, I’ll get even better.
If you put in the reps and if you do the work and keep walking in that direction, you’re inevitably going to get there. What we can do from our standpoint as coaches are, this is me, Brent and everybody at Wholesaling Inc. walked the path before so we do the best that we can do in terms of laying it out and setting up the foundations and everything for you guys to just cut the learning curve. Again, the work at the end of the day comes down to you. It’s not magic. You’re putting in the effort. You’re putting the time and the reps. It comes down to that.
You’re following a guideline or a blueprint, you know what actions to take but the actions still have to be taken by you at the end of the day. The tricky thing about real estate is there are no two deals that are exactly alike. You always have to adapt, adjust and then tweak, get creative here and then pull from this lever to push that button over there and make the thing work. I think when we approach something as challenging as this with that playful mindset, we can be a lot more creative in this space.
An even more beautiful part about it is that it gives us that level of freedom that we’re looking for and you’re getting to that spot. You’re in the middle now of the trenches. You have proof behind you. You closed a bunch of deals. You’re going through the emotional ups and downs that it takes to build a business and that’s inevitable.
Anybody who’s ever tried to start a business, it doesn’t matter what industry, has gone through those high and low emotional moments. It’s like a roller coaster. Cutting the learning curve is huge. Taylor, It has been amazing. Thank you so much. I appreciate it. If somebody wants to get ahold of you, what’s the best place to reach you at?
The best place for me is on Instagram. You can message me. It’s @TaylorBerg_REI.
I want to thank you for taking the time, being here and sharing your story. You’re doing amazing. The perspective that I think everybody can get from somebody who’s in the middle of it, it’s invaluable. Thank you so much. I’m honored to be part of your journey.
Thank you. I appreciate it.
There you have it, tribe. If you are interested in finding out more about the Wholesaling Business Blueprint, go to the Wholesaling Inc. website at WholesalingInc.com/wbb. Schedule a conversation with one of our guys. You’ve got to go through a little interview process and if it works for you and if it works for us, I look forward to working with you. Until then, stay focused. You got this.
About Rafael Cortez
Rafael is an Organizational Psychologist and real estate professional holding ownership in multiple companies in various verticals. He has profitably invested in wholesale real estate over the last decade, runs an active business doing an average of 15 deals per month and is now passionate about using his investment knowledge, entrepreneurial experience and training as an organizational psychologist to help others learn about real estate investing through the Wholesaling Business Blueprint Coaching program with Wholesaling Inc.