Bill Gatten

Getting Started
by Bill Gatten

“…I’ve done what you suggested, but I just can't seem to convince myself to push the rock over the cliff!”

This allusion refers to one’s being in a quandary as to whether to jump off a cliff into the river below in order to escape rapidly approaching bands of drunk Indians intent on mayhem. My suggestion for situations like this is to pause and reflect for a moment, then tie one end of a rope around your waist and the other around a giant rock.

You can then forget about the quandary and focus all your attention on pushing the rock over the cliff. When the rock topples over the side, you are no longer a part of the decision-making process. When the rock reaches the end of the rope, your destiny is determined…without the necessity of further input. At that point, one need merely form the lips into an oval and scream, “Ohhhhhh shiiiiiiii…..taki mushrooms!”

“...and therein lies your inability to do so Luke Skywalker”

Remember when Luke Skywalker was attempting to raise his spaceship from the bog by trying to "think" it out (i.e., using “The Force”). After several failed attempts, he became exasperated and said to the pointy-eared rubber dwarf that he just didn't think he could do it...and Yoda's comment was, "...and therein lies your problem Lukey Baby (…or something like that)." When you ‘think’ you can’t, you definitely can’t: when you think you “can” — only then can you and not until.”

Relating these analogies to your own aspirations: the rock is pushed over the cliff when you begin making calls, leaving messages and making promises...that point at which you realize that you’re in too deep to back out. The “spaceship” begins to lift itself out of the bog when you discover that what you are doing is working.

Think about does a cowboy make the decision to cross a raging stream? He sails his brand new hat over to the other side, knowing full well that he ain’t leavin’ till he gets that $250 Stetson back — one way or another.

The Key (Hurt ‘Em and Help ‘Em):

Always be and remain absolutely sincere, attentive, honest and wholly unassociated with whether the prospect goes for your offer or not. If you have sought out their problems (their Pain) and have good solutions for them (the Cure), they will pay you handsomely to ease their suffering. However, if they are not hurting, or don’t know they are, then either they don’t require treatment in the first place, or you haven’t hurt them enough.

Some Good Hurt ‘em Phrases:

Why do you think the house hasn’t sold? How did you arrive at that price? How do other houses on this street compare? How soon do you have to be on your new job? How soon to you have to be in your new house? Isn’t having two house payments just a wonderful thing? After accepting the low-ball offer you might get, covering your selling expenses, closing costs, refurbishment costs and income tax on your gain, will you really come out with much cash? Have you noticed the number of For Sale signs on your street? Whoa! What’s that smell? Are you aware that a meteorite just crashed through your roof?

The Secret of Success:

The secret of success in this business of ours lies in learning to deal only with those who are most likely to need the solutions we have to offer. We then present those solutions in order to help THEM...rather than to help only ourselves. My philosophy is that if what I suggest for them is fair and honest, we both get at least what we each were hoping for. If, on the other hand my offer is imbalanced or skewed in my direction, we both lose in the long run (when anyone I deal with or talk to thinks ill of me because of something I’ve done that is not in their best interest, I’ve lost something of far greater value than any profit I might glean from their current circumstance or misfortune).

In other words, we need to go after the Don't Wanters (motivated sellers): e.g., landlords with costs higher than rents; landlords who are tired of maintenance headaches; landlords who are tired of collections; FSBOS; Foreclosures, Lease Optionors; Divorces, Bankruptcies, the newly unemployed, etc. And we needn’t make a single call until we have sorted out the following in advance:

"If I can find out what their problems are, and where their Pain lies, I have a way to help them that will benefit both of us. I needn't give anyone a sales pitch: I need only listen intently while they tell me where they hurt and what they are hoping to accomplish. It is only then that I modify their requirements and offer my remedy."

A good thing to say (ask) during an initial call might be: "What would you like to see happen?” or “Exactly what are you hoping to accomplish in getting rid of the property?" These simple questions and a willingness to help, versus manipulate someone to your will, opens a whole new world of real estate acquisition…working together in mutual respect for mutual gain.

Bill Gatten
Bill Gatten is a one of the few true "in-the-trenches" creative financing teachers who actually practice what they preach. A highly successful real estate investor and much sought-after national speaker, Bill's most recent book (of many on the subject) is the very comprehensive, humorous and irreverent: "Making it BIG in Creative Real Estate and Keeping it...This Time," a 500 page compendium of all aspects of seller-carry, no-down, no-credit-needed, no-payment creative real estate financing, featuring the dynamic "Equity Holding Land Trust(tm) System" -- the PACTrust (tm) and NEHTrust(tm).

Educated at the California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, Bill's 45 years of work experience are in sales training, real estate investing and institutional banking (former co-owner and founder, Westlake Bancorp; and the former president and CEO of Gatten Financial Services, Inc. and Markay Equipment Leasing, Inc., Thousand Oaks, Ca.).

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Copyright 2002-2018 All Rights Reserved. Published with Permission of Author. No part of this publication may be copied or reprinted
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