Updated: Jul 19
Are you new to real estate investing or thinking about becoming an investor? Learning from others who are doing what you want to to is an excellent way to dip your toe into water. Many successful investors are willing and open to help newbies wade into the pool.
“The thought of having and needing to work for someone else didn’t sit well with me." - Leka Devatha
Seattle Washington based Real Estate Investor, Broker Leka Devatha, wants to empower and motivate others to see that their dreams can come true. With over 40 flips, almost 30 transactions for retail buyers, sellers and investors, Leka’s Rabit Homes includes 13 doors, and she recently completed her first land sub-division deal.
She is also advisor to Certain Lending, a start-up large scale lending company based in California that lends to real estate developers.
A Passion for Real Estate Construction The native of India, moved to the US in 2006 initially taking on a corporate job in fashion merchandising. After a few years, she realized her true satisfaction would be found in entrepreneurship.
“The thought of having and needing to work for someone else didn’t sit well with me," says Leka Devatha
My true passion has always been home construction,” says the wife and mother of two young boys. She bought her first house to fix and flip in 2014. With an understanding of remodeling, permitting, and construction, Leka’s passion for building homes was sparked at an early age while learning from her parents as they built their home in India.
“Building a home in India is not like building in the US. It can take up to 3 - 4 years in India because of the brick construction.” While in India, Leka would visit the construction site of her parent’s home daily to check on workers and help to oversee their home build project. Do You Enjoy Serving Others When she left her corporate job to pursue real estate full time, Leka began flipping home and researching to gain knowledge about home design. The management and soft skills she gained while working her corporate job have transferred to her real estate business well.
“Everything from buying to flipping to selling involves service. You have to find people who are good at what they do to come and help you because you can’t do this in isolation,” she says. You have to be able to manage, grow and seek potential in the people you want to hire.”
Leka also learned over the years of managing her own company that much like the corporate sector, real estate is very service oriented. The real estate business is more than making money from properties, it is very much about helping others. The Road to Success Becoming an entrepreneur in this or any business takes a lot of dedication and hard work. There are highs and lows. Family and friends may not be supportive, and mistakes will be made along the way.
“If I had a nickel for every time someone told me no, I’d be very rich,” she says. When it comes to your business, it is ultimately up to you, what you put in, you get out of it. If you put in the work... If I had not made mistakes, I would not have learned. When you do things right all the time, you don’t have anything to learn.” Real estate on any level requires building or being part of teams to find and get deals done. Having a strong team means having a core set of people who can help your business to grow and stay afloat.
Starting with a coach/mentor is a great way to begin. Attend meet-ups network, grow and learn with others. There is a ton of information online about starting in real estate, but talking and engaging with actual people will keep you informed with real time information and motivated.
Educate Yourself, Then Take Action, Do Something
Many new or would be investors have to overcome the mindset issues that may be holding them back, from fear of the unknown, uncertainty in the market, naysayers and just a core belief in themselves to succeed. The onset of a global pandemic hasn’t helped much, but Leka believes that massive change creates a lot of opportunity. Education goes a long way. Whatever path you choose to pursue, whether it is real estate or not, read books, listen to podcasts, talk to people who are doing what you want to do. Leka says about a thousand people have reached out to her with good intentions but they have to do something to start.
"There are so many limiting beliefs. You have to push those aside and say to yourself, if I take one little step I am one step closer to my ultimate goal. It’s just about taking that step. Have a mission. Have income generating commitments on my calendar. One of my favorite quotes is by MLK, 'If you can't fly, then run, if you can't run, then walk, if you can't walk, then crawl, but whatever you do, you have to keep moving.'
Stay focused on what it is that you want - move forward brick by brick," she says.
Valerie Winrow is an author and a women’s lifestyle writer/blogger with focused content on health, wellness, and finance. Her “Yes, I'm That Girl!” blog and "Yes, That Girl!" podcast, share inspirational stories and anecdotes to encourage others to live a life of purpose.
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