Start Using the Law of Reciprocity to Grow Your Business

Amber S. operates her real estate business throughout Northern California. A common theme throughout her experience is that investors need to provide value to others.

When you think of California real estate, your natural response probably includes the word “expensive.” This has led in-state investors to explore markets across the country. Northern California native Amber S. finds deals in various markets, but her bread and butter is her home turf.

Property value increases throughout California have served as a deterrent to some. Amber’s real estate business on the other hand, is benefitting from the upside. She continues to amass a diverse real estate portfolio using Sundae’s Marketplace including flips, long term, and vacation rentals.

In this article, you’ll learn how Amber attained success. Here’s Amber’s tried and true advice on how to stay ahead of the competition.

Provide value and good things will come

Among the key ingredients needed to grow your real estate business, none is more important than the Law of Reciprocity.

It’s very simple, yet few people actually do it. The idea is to help others without any expectation of getting something in return. Ironically, in doing so, people tend to return the favor. Amber has built her business upon the foundation of this concept and been rewarded mightily.

Help people in your network

Anyone in the real estate business knows that an appraiser can make or break a deal. This has given them a negative connotation in the space because so much is on the line. Rather than channeling animosity towards them, Amber has a different approach.

In Sacramento, she met an appraiser that changed her perspective on everything. She recalls that the appraiser “handed out a sheet that had questions that appraisers typically need answered. The way he presented the sheet was that we’d be helping him do his job if we provided those things.”

Amber took that advice to heart. She now goes to every appraisal and provides appraisers with everything they need–including offers people made for the property. This streamlines the process for appraisers.

Create a win-win in any situation

Within the real estate ecosystem, there are many opportunities to double dip. For example, Amber has a real estate license and is also an investor. Theoretically, she can get a commission when she buys a property and when she sells it. On top of that, she profits from the investment and rehab on the property. Though this is a viable option, she’s found ways to help others build their businesses.

Amber has built an entire ecosystem that feeds into her investing business. By forming relationships in the real estate community, she’s found ways to create a win-win in any situation.

Symbiotic relationships like this are a common theme throughout her story. This was clear when she stated that “I have over 100 agents that bring me whatever they can. Then, in turn, I tell them when my flips hit the market or have them sell my flips.” Amber regularly gives agents the opportunity to take commission when she buys and sells. She finds that these relationships bring her more value than a commission check would.

Over time, this mentality has enabled Amber to establish a real estate empire.

Don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty

Successful real estate investors often say that you should be working on your business, not in it. In doing so, you can build systems for every area of your business that help you grow. However, there’s also a time to roll up your sleeves and get to work.

Amber learned this lesson when she was managing contractors and subcontractors. At first, she would go to a job site and mention everything that they did wrong. She quickly realized that that wasn’t a good way to make friends.

She decided to get hands-on. To learn the ins and outs, “I went in the field, put on a tool belt, hung doors, and I even built decks.” After 30 days on the job, Amber earned a new respect for what contractors did. They also began to show her a great deal of respect. She embraced this mindset shift and began thinking about everything from multiple perspectives. That’s helped her empathize with everyone she works with and build lasting relationships with contractors.

Now, she doesn’t have to swing a hammer, but that one experience changed her life.

Sundae helps investors like Amber save time finding deals

Life as a real estate investor involves many different activities. Perhaps top among them is finding deals. Without properties, nothing else matters. Amber frequently finds deals on Sundae’s Marketplace as a way of streamlining the process. Here’s what she had to say:

“Sundae’s platform is way better than going to auction. When going to auction, we’re driving 30 properties and there’s 50 of us standing around trying to bid on the one property that didn’t get postponed. It’s a lot of legwork going to auction, whereas Sundae gives us everything we need and a platform where we can sit on our computer to do it.”

So far, she’s purchased 23 properties on Sundae’s Marketplace. In fact, she made it a point to say “we want more” afterwards. Sundae helps Amber propel her business activity forward and frees up time for other important activities.

By following Amber’s advice, you’ll be one step closer to achieving your goals.

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Kyle Spearin

Kyle is Sundae's Real Estate Editor. As both an investor and content marketing professional, Kyle combines his passion for real estate investing and educational background with his love of helping others. His experience with real estate tech companies, including contributing to BiggerPockets Pro, gives him insight into markets across the United States.