on August 21, 2012
After having read this book from cover to cover, I liked how the author flipped from tips to real life scenarios and that helped him along his way in his real estate investing and renovations. The main message in book is to take action. Many books just say it like it is, but leaves the reader with little motivation. This book is different in that it helps me to think that I can do this too. In fact, I will do this too! Investing in real estate is more than handing a key to a new tenant after a 30 minute segment. This book breaks down the processes to create the perfect home for the tenant living in the space created for them. The tips from how to secure investors, why developing relationships with your 'dream team' is important, to what types of renovations are most important, to setting up systems and when do what renovation was extremely helpful. This is a well written, detailed focus and with real-world examples that any investor, from a novice to a pro will learn tricks of the trade to better an investment property.
on March 24, 2013
Amazing book! Would highly recommend it to anyone in the reno industry looking to improve their business. It teaches how to do the *right* renovations rather than expensive renovations. He also talks about proper project management and finance, which are keys to success in any reno project.
Just a day after reading this book I used a couple simple techniques from the book and was able to save a couple thousands on an upcoming project. I wouldn't attribute it solely to the book, but it did **significantly** help. As you can see, from this stand point, the book has already delivered on its promise. I can guarantee that if you use his techniques, you'll also save the same.
For those who think renos and real estate is a "get rich quick" business, Ian in his book also dispels this myth by going through the ins and outs of what a professional renovator needs to know to be sucessful. At the end of this read, you'll either be equipped to do a proper reno job and structure your reno business properly, or you will be convinced that renovations is not your calling and decide to do something else instead. Either way, the book will be useful if it helps you make that *informed* decision.
One critique I have of the book is that I wouldn't call it a basic introduction book for a true beginner. The author assumes that you have some understanding of handiwork renovations and finance, so he doesn't break it down for the very beginner. For example, he talks a lot about joint ventures, but does not define it. This may be a standard concept in real estate investment, but for the true beginner, it can be a bit confusing. Also, the book offers so many things - I wish there could have been some summary chapter at the very end which itemizes the process (as described in the book), so as to sum up all the gems the author talks about. Since this is not done, make sure you have some highlighter and bookmarks or you may forget some details hidden between the pages.
Another thing I would have liked is for him to talk about the pros and cons of delegating a project to contractors vs. doing the job oneself. However, the book did not really detail the best ways to structure a business. Also some information on "when to sell" would have been useful (e.g. immediate flip vs. long-term investment).
Those are some nit-picky critiques. Nonetheless, I would still highly recommend this book as it has of invaluable tips. Book reads nicely as well, in regular everyday conversation.
on August 24, 2012
Are you doing renovations? Are you going to do a renovation in the next year? If yes, GET THIS BOOK.
I didn't even do a good job putting his tips into place and our last two major renovations were EARLY and UNDER budget. This is after years of doing renovations that were usually over budget and barely on time ... sometimes late.
He explains how to get organized for the project, how to plan and oversee it in a systematized way and how not to get burned out by it. I think most investors or renovators know how easy it is to put every waking thought into a project and almost start to hate it because you're SO tired of thinking about it and working on it ... and he just lays it out so clearly how to avoid that. And because you're organized from the start thanks to his systems and tips you actually can avoid it fairly easily. I actually felt relaxed on the last renovation and it was the most under budget & early of all the ones we've done in almost 11 years!
I know for a fact that by simply tracking the materials we use, watching for them on sale and buying in bulk when the price is good saved us thousands of dollars. And while it sounds like a simple thing we were basically JUST IN TIME buyers. When a project required flooring, we'd go buy the flooring. When a project required appliances, we'd go buy the appliances but by watching for the sales on the stuff we use on all the renovations we saved so much.
Simple tips like that were what we put into place and it made a HUGE difference.
Whether it's a home renovation or a rental property - you'll be glad you read this before you did the project.