The author writes that his real estate investment career began in 1992, when he met an elderly couple who earned more than $65,000 per month net income from 125 properties. Along the way, Shemin learned how to assure realty success by purchasing property, mostly houses, at least 20% below market value.
The author calls real estate "the best wealth builder in the universe," and it certainly has been for him. In this well-organized book, Shemin explains the many profit-making choices that real estate investors have, such as buying and selling property (called flipping), buying and holding for long-term market value appreciation, and leasing with an option to buy.
Lease-options seem to be the author's favorite method of controlling and profiting from property. His chapter on this topic explains how to find, acquire and benefit from lease-options without tying up much cash.
Shemin uses examples throughout the book. Although most involve other people, a few explain his personal realty escapades. The book would have benefited from more of these.
One of the most interesting chapters explains the pros and cons of most types of real estate investments, such as rental houses, trailers, apartments, commercial property and even land. The author seems to favor houses.
How to find real estate bargains is explained in another chapter, where Shemin shares some offbeat techniques, such as putting a sign on the side of your car or truck saying: "We will pay cash for your house. Call me." Although the author dislikes the idea, he says, "That ugly sign becomes a beautiful one when motivated sellers call you."
The book's strongest chapter is about negotiating, and Shemin comes off as a relentless negotiator. "What is the absolute least amount you would take for this property?" he keeps asking sellers to wear them down. Then he adds, "Can you do any better?"
The author emphasizes ethics and how to treat others, including tenants, so you can do business with them again. One especially valuable technique is to have lease-option tenants agree in their own handwriting that they are to be responsible for repairs up to $300. If they later "forget," Shemin sends them a copy of their written promise to pay for such repairs.
Every real estate investor should study this book. Readers need not adopt every idea, but Shemin opens doors to the different techniques for profiting from realty investing. (Los Angeles Times and Miami Herald, December 1, 2002)
"In it, you'll find plenty of useful tips..." (Business Week, February 10, 2003)