Are you interested in wholesale real estate? You need to learn how to invest, but you don’t have to have money to make money. You can build wealth through real estate without a ton of cash to do it.
Today, Clint Coons of Anderson Business Advisors talks to Max Maxwell about wholesale real estate. In the business of wholesaling houses, Max and his team solves problems for people that typically don’t fit in the box that society has created.
Max loves wholesaling. No matter what part of real estate people get into—from doing single family homes, all the way to building high rises—learn how to identify a deal. A good deal never searches for money. Money always searches for a good deal.
- Good vs. Bad Failures: What made Max ready to absorb what real estate gives him.
- What is wholesaling? Foundation of real estate investing. Know the area to get results.
- Hot vs. Cold Market Trends: One rule – never identify or buy anything that is for sale.
- Mindset Change: Don’t ignore, but start to see more opportunities than ever seen before.
- Out of Box: Do something different; hang out with people who are where you want to be.
- Competition and Conversations: Be real and genuine. Human instinct is to help people.
- Simple Process: Identify house, identify owner, call them, agree on price, write contract.
Full Episode Transcript:
Clint: Hey, guys. It’s Clint Coons here with Anderson Business Advisors. In this episode, I’m bringing someone on that I’ve been following for several years. I’ve been trying to get him on the show because I know how much information he can deliver. If you’ve just been to his YouTube channel, you’ll know what I’m talking about. That’s when I started following him because I was interested in wholesaling. I like to follow people who actually do the same thing that I do. They deliver on content. I mean, they don’t hold anything back.... Read Full Transcript
Max Maxwell, he is the real deal here when it comes to wholesaling. In fact, my partner and I have purchased several properties from him. He’s from an area in which I’m heavily invested in, you’ve heard me talk about before, in Winston-Salem. This is the guy that knows the area. It’s such a pleasure to have him on. Max, thanks for being here.
Max: Clint, thanks for having me. I’m a big fan of your work too. As I get bigger and bigger in business in itself, I use a lot of the information that you put out to make sure I’m set up correctly.
Clint: Yeah. That’s important. But before you get to use my services, people have to go through what you’ve been through—learn how to invest and to get started. What really made this all tied together for me today to do this show with you because I was in the gym, one of my workout buddies, is a semi-pro ex-basketball player. He just started following me on YouTube.
He didn’t know I was there because I never told him. We just lift weights together. He said, man, you got to have money to make money. I said, you’re so wrong, you got to catch the episode that I’m putting together today. And your life story is really about that. Is it not?
Max: One hundred percent. I’ve done so much. I’ve had a lot of good failures. I don’t know if people can say that, in the sense, they think every failure is something bad. I’ve had a lot of good failures that led to the point and the time when I was ready to absorb what real estate was going to give me. I enjoyed every step of the way, from barely graduating high school to going into the military and all that stuff like that. I just had fun my whole life with my failures.
Clint: Yeah, but that concept to get involved in real estate, you have to have it. I don’t think that’s the case. I mean, you’ve done it for yourself and so many other people that follow you have shown them how they can build wealth through real estate and you don’t need a ton of cash to do it.
Max: No. One thing I tell people why I love wholesaling no matter what part of real estate you’re going to get into—from doing single family homes, all the way to building high rises—the idea is learning how to identify a deal. You’re going to need that on any aspect of real estate that you go into. But here’s the great thing. If you learn how to identify a deal, a good deal never searches for money. Money always searches for a good deal.
If you can possess and identify a good deal, you don’t never really have to have money. It’s a skill set. It’s becoming a nerd about the area. The reason why you and your partner buy from me in Winston-Salem is because we just know the area. You guys trust in that and there you go. It produces results.
Clint: For somebody who’s watching now that is thinking about getting started and becoming a wholesaler, what are some of the tips you would recommend that they should be focusing on right away?
Max: One thing is you got to understand wholesaling is—like a lot of people like to say—the bottom of real estate investing, which I don’t believe so. I think the foundation is the correct word. Just know that what you may have when you get into learning about wholesaling, whether you’re watching YouTube, podcasts, or however you find your obsession, understand that the skill you’re about to acquire is going to take a certain amount of obsession to be able to understand it correctly.
Things that you may have looked at in the past as an eyesore, you’re now going to be seeing as an opportunity. Because in the business of wholesaling, what we do is we solve problems, we solve problems for people that typically don’t fit in the box that society has created. It’s like they inherit a home that they live halfway across the country and it’s in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. They now live in Denver, and they have no plans of ever coming back to grandma’s house.
By the way, it’s three years behind on taxes, nor do they have the money to fix the roof. That’s when they want to sell it in as is condition to somebody who either is going to flip it themselves or someone like myself in my early days who would find it and hand it to someone like Clint and his partner, they fix it up, and they make it into a rental property.
Clint: How do you identify those? Because in this market where it’s hot, you would think that there wouldn’t be any wholesale opportunities there. All you do is throw in the MLS, the thing’s going to sell in 45 days or less, and you’re going to get top dollar.
Max: When they talk about market trends, they’re only talking about the 90%–95% of homes that sell the traditional way. They’re not talking about the 5% of homes that we deal with on a daily basis. No average real estate agent or realtor wants to list a home with a hole in the roof or whatever the problem may be. They have been taught as real estate agents to list homes that are nice and pretty and solve problems.
Whether this market is hot or this market is cold, it doesn’t matter. It’s really simple to identify something. One rule that I have is I never buy anything that’s for sale. We solve problems. If somebody has found a real estate agent to work with and their real estate agent has found a person to work with, that’s probably their highest and best use of whatever they’re trying to get to. The MLS is a great tool for agents to be able to showcase their properties to other buyers and sellers. I can’t solve that problem.
If you’re in a tough situation, I’ll give you an example. I’ll break down my first deal. My first deal, how I got into the business is I had a business fail. At 30 years old, I had moved back home with my mother. I had left at 17 to join the United States Air Force. At this point, I’ve been gone home for a long time. In life, you’re thinking, I need to have myself together by 30. That’s kind of this number that I think most people in their mind make up. It was the complete opposite for me. I was moving back home with my mom.
I got obsessed. I found videos on YouTube and podcasts. The first thing I can remember standing out was Driving for Dollars. It sounds simple, but kind of like that picture behind you. That was what my gas tank was on, literally. I had no money. It was on E. I overdrafted one of my debit cards in order to put gas in my car to go to this Driving for Dollars thing that I’ve seen online.
I started to identify properties that I used to drive by. It’s the house on the corner with the tall bushes, overgrown grass, and the trees dropping down on the roof. That’s when you start to see opportunities for something that used to look like an eyesore. I went to the old neighborhood I grew up in on the same street I grew up on. I drove on this and I found this house on the corner.
Literally, it’s exactly what I described. It’s in the middle of summer, but it’s getting towards the end of summer like around this time almost five, six years ago. I see overgrown grass, overgrown bushes, and the trees and I’m just like, this is it. This is exactly what they’ve been saying. I finally got a hold of this person. Within seven days, I got a signed contract, and it’s decided to make $14,000.
Now, this house had tenants that moved out. It was in bad shape. You just can name everything that you think was wrong. It was not a candidate for the MLS. There are still properties like that today. I think if a statistic says there are between 12 and 15 million vacant homes in America. There’s enough. Those are your opportunities right there.
Clint: Well, I think one of the things that I heard in what you were describing is there was a change in mindset because how many times have you driven by that house before and you never—
Max: Plenty. It’s on the way to the basketball court. I’ve never paid attention to it. Sometimes I used to delete my opportunities. Then when you have that mindset change and you start to see them, you start to see more opportunities than you’ve ever seen. It’s like could you ever buy a new car and you think it’s the best thing ever. As soon as you pull off the lot you see three of them pass by you then you go to the gas station there are two parked at the pumps. It’s like wait, I thought I was the only one to have this right now?
That’s like being able to see your opportunity. When I was able to see my opportunity, my complete life has changed—from living in my mother’s house, to now having 20-something employees. I have an 8000 square foot office, I own millions of dollars in real estate, and I control even more than that. Now I’m working on my first large development project all within the last five, six years.
Clint: When you’re looking at this or you’re talking about this mindset change, how does an individual experience that and go through it? I mean, does it just take education, go into your YouTube, watch those countless videos you have that are phenomenal or go on your website therealmaxwell.com? What is it for someone?
Max: First is going to be a thing that a person has to accept in herself. I want to change. And now you need to introduce the complete opposite thoughts of what you’ve always had previously. In order to change, you need to challenge. You have to challenge your mind of what it used to think in a regular way. You got to challenge everything. If you start to challenge these things, you start to change and you’ll start to accept these new normals or start to question why you do things a certain way.
Next thing you know, your mind starts to change. Then you need to hang around people who are where you want to be. I think that’s a big part of it too. You got to break out this box. I know we’re in tough times now. But start going to meetings and hanging around others inspired whatever. If you want to be the best hairdresser in the world, go to the best hair shows in the world. Do you know what I mean? So start hanging around these people.
Once you get that mindset change, you become a little odd to everybody else. When you become odd to everybody else, you know you’re on the right path. You’re trying to accomplish between 1% and 5% of people, so the other 95%–98% of Americans are going to think that you’re crazy. And that’s where you’re going down the right path.
Clint: You’re heading out the door and your wife says, where are you going hon? I’m going to a place where people are going to think I’m crazy.
Max: There you go. That’s when you’re heading in the right pathway because you got to do something different.
Clint: All right. So, you started finding these properties. When you sold your first one, you made $14,000. How did you find that person to sell it to that investor?
Max: Facebook Marketplace. Obviously, I have developed my tactics since then. But yeah, I didn’t know anybody. I didn’t really know real estate investors. I didn’t know any flippers. The only flippers I knew were Chip and Joanna. They weren’t buying in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. I put it on Facebook Marketplace. Within hours, I had phone calls and people visiting. I knew I had something.
A few hours later, I had a lady call me and say her husband and her just finished the flip. Next thing by the weekend, they said they wanted it Monday, and we signed the paperwork by Sunday. By Monday evening, it was at the attorney’s office. Within seven days, we closed after that. To somebody that has a negative bank account, you’re holding a $14,000 check, it feels like you just hit the PowerBall. I never looked back. I never looked back to that day.
Clint: But there are things though. So let’s say that I’m driving around, I’ve never done this before, and I found one of these houses. How do you go about it? Would you recommend somebody approach that seller so that you don’t scare him off, or maybe there are other people out there I’m competing with? Is there a way to cut through the noise and get them on the line?
Max: Listen, in any business you get into, there’s going to be competition and competition is good because it validates something that you’re doing. The people like to put out tactics and things like that. I think in the end, there are some tactics, but the reality is to have a genuine conversation with another human. It’s really simple. Hey, I’m driving in your neighborhood. I see that you have a house. I think you own this house. If you can’t find the person, ask the neighbors on either side. Knock on the door itself.
I found a lot of people that couldn’t be found by the neighbors knowing. You just have to listen. I’m interested in purchasing this house. Are you interested in selling it? If they say yes, then have a just genuine conversation. When’s the last time you lived there? Was it a rental property? It was? What happened? What were they paying? What were the tenants like? If you could fix this house, what would you do? Just a real genuine conversation.
I’ve had people sell me their house and I have not been the highest offer. It’s just because I was real with them. Here’s another tip. If you’re new, tell them you’re new. I know that sounds counterproductive. Hey, look, I got a little bit of money. I want to get into my first flip. If you can help me, if you can sell me your home, if you’re interested in selling, it’d be cool if I could flip this house first. Then you’d be surprised. The human instinct is to help people. Naturally, it’s to help people.
You might have this guy that comes in a suit and tie button-up. Yeah, we own 140 houses and they’re going to sell it to you because their natural inkling is, well, I can help this person out. This person may not be my highest offer, but I feel great helping this person. That’s just who we are as humans. There are some bad ones, but the majority of us are great people.
Clint: I’ve been there before selling a truck a couple of years ago. I met with this family, a young family. He’s in the military and just got stationed here in Washington in McChord. I sold the truck for a couple $1000 under what I could have sold it for. While we’re sitting there doing the deal, a physician pulls up in a Porsche and says, man, I’ll give you $10,000 cash for that thing right now, more than what he’s paying you. He’s like, not interested.
Max: I’d rather help this guy.
Clint: Exactly. At the time, when I did it, you felt good about that. You’re able to help somebody like that. Like you said, that comes through and a lot of people want to do that. What I noticed when I first started watching and following your videos on YouTube, was those conversations you would take people through. You have those students in your office there and you would get on the phone with people. The way you would talk to them was so different from what I’d seen before from other people who talk about wholesaling.
It’s just a different approach that I think cuts through that noise. I’m glad you said that because I think that’s the greatest stumbling block for people in trying to connect and figure out a way that they can make money at this. I’m sure you’ve got the same things I get all the time. Hey, I see you on a property here. I’m an investor. I want to buy that. Would you be willing to sell me the property? It just seems too robotic.
Max: It’s very robotic. Some of my best salespeople have lived in Winston-Salem for 20+ years. They know the principal at this place. They know the lady who serves breakfast at this place. They’re just down-to-earth, genuine people. My best salespeople just have conversations with people. If the conversation goes where we can help each other, we do it. Even if I can help you and not profit from it, I’m okay.
In this time, we’ve helped people get rental assistance and we’ve helped landlords get there. I’m saying, I want to sell, but you said you’re three months behind. How are you going to make this happen? Oh, well, there’s a program with our city that if you get your tenant to submit an application and you do this, then they’ll pay the back rent. Then you don’t need me. That’s karma and it goes around in circles. But, this is a good business.
It’s a simple business. It’s not easy in the sense that you’re going to have to put in the work. But I promise you that if you put this work in early in this business, you’re unlimited when it comes to real estate. I’ve done everything from finding a single family to empty to now I know how to get entitlements on a development deal. Put $200,000 in due diligence in order to sell something for a lot more money. That all just came from learning how to flip a small home on a piece of paper, all the way to the point where I can build 64 apartments.
You just got to put in the work and it’s really simple. Now, wherever you want to be in real estate, I think the journey starts here. Clint, I’m pretty sure you have people from all walks of life come to you and I do too. I tell the same guy that comes to me with a quarter-million dollars, to the same guy that comes to me with a quarter. If you start here and you get obsessed with this, you’re going to go a long way.
I don’t care if you have no money or all the money in the world, you got to learn how to identify a deal. Like you and your partner, you buy deals in Winston-Salem, but if I bring you something that’s not good, you’re not going to buy it. You know how to identify a good deal. I know how to identify a great deal, and it all makes sense for everybody.
Clint: If somebody is driving around, are there some red flags they should look out for when they’re getting started in wholesaling?
Max: I wouldn’t say there are many red flags. You’re just really going to go after something that you have tried to ignore for a long time. That’s the house that looks a certain way and the grass a certain way. But this is a numbers game. I know I get really excited speaking about this, but you’re going to have to talk to many people. You’re going to get many no’s, and you’re going to get a few yeses that may convert you into actually buying a home.
The strategy is really simple. Once you talk to a person and once you guys can agree on a price, there are videos out there that say, hey, this is how you evaluate what a good deal is. A lot of people get hung up on the repair costs because it’s different. What […] cost for you in Washington to fix a bathroom is different here in North Carolina. Don’t get caught up on a lot of stuff. What I would say is, even though you’re becoming obsessed with a new topic, move fast, move in the right direction, and you’re going to make mistakes.
But once you identify that house, identify the owner, you have a conversation, you agree on a price, you write a contract. That contract is then assignable to somebody else. My team may get it under contract at X, and it’s worth this amount. I assign my rights to this contract to Clint and his team and they go in there cleaned up, do what to do. They keep it or they turn around and flip it. You guys do a lot of buy-and-hold. Those are even better people because they’re willing to spend a little bit more money to get it done.
It’s a really simple process. It’s not going to be the easiest thing you’ve ever done, but it’s worth it.
Clint: When you get it under contract, you assign it over, those types of forms, those documents, a lot of attorneys don’t know anything about them. What do you tell people? Where would they need to go to find those basic tools so that, hey, if I’ve got an interested seller, then it’s like, what the hell do I do now?
Max: I try to shy away from giving as far as contracts out. What I say is, here’s a template that you may need to take to somebody in your area who knows this type of investing and can craft something. What I typically tell somebody is, look, find somebody local in your area that’s already doing this, that is already working with attorneys that are real estate investors and wholesalers. Ask them for their contract. Can I get a copy of your contract so that when I get something under contract and send it to you, you know it’s legit because I used your paperwork?
Use your local title companies and use the local title attorneys that work with wholesalers and ask them if they have a version of a contract they would be comfortable closing in their office. That solves the problem because attorneys make money and title companies make money closing your deals. Those contracts they feel comfortable using, they would love to give them to you because it costs them nothing. They already got it made.
Clint: That’s what astounds me. I get so many calls from clients or future clients, hey, what do I need to bring to the title company or how do they need to look? Have you just called them and asked them then they say they want X, Y, and Z give them X, Y, and Z and that’s it. Don’t give them A, B, and C.
Max: Right. Typically, they don’t give it to you to give it back to them.
Clint: Yeah, that’s right. Wow. You’ve trained thousands of people on how to wholesale. If I was someone who was interested in learning more, other than your YouTube channel, which like I said, you give it all away for free. Where should someone go if they want to engage with you?
Max: A good buddy of mine who’s been in this business for 12 years. His name is Nasar. He’s in the Charlotte market. He’s been wholesaling for a while, and he inspired me to start keeping rentals. As I visited him one day, he was getting this triplex ready to remodel for re-rent. I was like, man, I’m the wholesaling guy. I’m wholesaling a lot of properties, but I wasn’t keeping any. His inspiration of showing me his rental portfolio allowed me to start keeping some.
About a year ago, he and I decided to put together a training course because some people need structure in order to learn. They need instruction. They need a step-by-step guide. Some people that watch my YouTube videos, thousands of them have messaged me and said, I know you don’t know me, I watched your videos, and I took your steps. I made some money. I love that. That’s great.
We put together a course and it’s on maxandnas.com. You can go there and sign up for our course, it’s like $500 and $500 is nothing. We have fun doing it. It’s more of a community. There are like 1000 people in there. We meet weekly on Zoom. We have a special Facebook group. It’s fun because not only am I teaching my students, my students are doing so well that I’m buying deals from them.
For me it’s rewarding. More than the $500, I’m like cool, I just bought another rental property. They make some money. I get to add something to my portfolio. It’s just like a community of people. We got people all across the country who are in this group and it’s just fun. It’s something that just helped me pass time by.
Clint: We were just talking about where do you find agreements and things like that? Well, joining a group like this.
Max: It’s all in it.
Clint: Yeah, you’re going to be exposed to other people too in your area. I’ve been following you lately, you’ve been getting involved in Ghana. Would you mind telling us a little bit about that?
Max: Clint, I’m a student of the game. I’m always trying to expand. I feel like once you start to get comfortable, you got to shift some things and get uncomfortable. I’m comfortable being uncomfortable. So I started visiting Ghana with Nas. I went to Ghana with Nas this year. We went on a vacation. I ended up in real estate investing, two-day investing with […] and all these people. Then I started getting interested, I said, look, I can build some projects here. I went home. The next month, I was back in Ghana.
Ghana is really cool. It’s like the Western gateway to Africa. It’s a really cool country. We were staying in the city of Accra. I’m interested in doing some affordable housing in Ghana. Because their credit system is young, the mortgage system is young, so there is a need for affordable housing for people. The cool thing about going to Ghana and most of your other countries like that is if you go there, you’re in business in the United States, and you go there you say, I’ve seen this movie before. I know what’s about to happen next. Let me get ahead of it.
I know that we have a housing shortage crisis ourselves when it comes to affordability. I know Ghana is in the same pathway, and it’s going to be even worse. I’m like hey, look, let’s start a development team here. Let’s get some development going.
We’re working on a small 10-unit project right now. Once that’s finished, I get my feet wet there, and I start to learn more about how it works, then we’re going to do something bigger and better, and just even more and more. I’m probably going to be going to Ghana next month again and probably stay for a month or so. Then we’ll keep going. This is just a learning process. I’m having fun doing it.
Clint: Yeah. You always got to find those things that keep you motivated to want to do more. Hey, man, this has been great. I really, truly appreciate you coming on. You’re just such a breath of fresh air. For anybody that’s watching us, you really have to check out his stuff. I cannot attest enough of how phenomenal his education is on his YouTube channel. Go to his website, subscribe. It’s only going to help you with your investing. If you know people who want to start real estate, give him his information, get there, and start educating yourself.
Max, is there anything else you want to leave with the viewers before we go?
Max: I’ll say this, Clint, as I started to climb the ladder, your name came up a lot more. You’re a legend in the real estate game and all of that. Kudos to you. Thanks for putting out the content you do as well too and educating the people. You guys always come into our masterminds to help us keep growing. I’ll just say I appreciate you and I appreciate everybody watching.
Clint: Thanks, Max.
Max: Thank you.
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