With a hunger to give back and inspire his students, Zack Boothe from DFD Mastery flew down to Florida from Utah to show that you can support your family with only $1,000 in seed money. The pressure was on as a cameraman followed him around recording his attempts to open a new market away from his family, his friends, and his network.
There’s no trick or hack to Zack’s success. It’s just a non-sexy driving for dollars campaign, cold calling, and hustling. One of Zack’s favorite tools is the Deal Machine app, so he shares how he pairs it with targeted driving in blue-collar neighborhoods. You don’t even have to get out of your car to capture the data from Deal Machine and create a spreadsheet full of potentially distressed or vacant properties.
Driving around neighborhoods, Zack was able to find between 60-70 houses an hour. Combined with his killer cold calling skills, he was able to start closing deals, and at his last count, he’s made $40,000 and counting. In a new market. With only $1,000. That’s some serious hustling.
Right now Zack is running an experiment on segmenting his lists. From his experience with driving for dollars, he realized that vacant homes have the most motivated sellers, followed by absentee owners, then owner-occupied homes, and finally corporate-owned. Check out his YouTube channel DFD Mastery for the results on how successful list segmentation is.
If you don’t have a massive belief, you won’t take massive action and have massive results. Instead, your half-hearted effort is going to give you half-hearted results. Get inspired by Zack’s success story with good old-fashioned wholesaling.
Joe: What's going on, everybody? Joe McCall, Real Estate Investing Mastery podcast. Glad you're here. What's up? Hello. Hey, got something cool for you today on this podcast, we're going to be interviewing a good friend of mine, Zack Booth. Let me just ask you something. If you all you had was a thousand bucks and you needed to make some money fast to pay the bills, to feed your kids, to take care of your family, to whatever survive, what would you do? It's a great question. You know, I've seen a lot of people attempt to do something like that in the past, but it's harder when you actually have to document yourself doing it because you got the added pressure of everybody watching you as you're doing it. You've got the added pressure of teaching, not just because if you're by yourself, there's no camera, you're not teaching. You can just concentrate on doing the task when you have to actually teach and share what you're doing while you're doing it to a camera that just doubles or triples the work. Right.
Joe: And so when Zack told me he was going to do this challenge, he did it as a forty thousand dollars and 40 day challenge. He lives in Utah. He's going to fly down to Florida for 40 days. When he told me he's going to do that, I said, you're crazy. Why? What do you do? And what do you have to prove is like, I just want to do it. I said, all right. And so he's recently finished, but he kind of didn't finish, but he kind of did. And it's crazy. It's cool. I'm not going to steal his thunder. I'm let him share what he did. And it's pretty cool because how he did it, guys, every single one of you listening to this can do it, too. It's not that Zack's anything special, although he is he's a cool guy, but there's no reason why anybody and everybody listening to this podcast right now cannot do what Zack just did. It's really simple and easy.
Joe: And when we talk about it, you're going to be like, oh, that's it. I was looking for some secret magic pill. I was looking for some secret formula or secret list or little trick or hack something that I like. But no, that's all he did. He's serious. Yes. In a new market that he's never done deals in before. Right. So he's got a cool story and I can't wait to share it with you, but I'll just give you a little tip here. He got over seven contracts in less than forty days and he's going to make well north of one hundred thousand dollars on this thing. He's got one deal that might be going well anyway. I don't want to steal his thunder. So he's going to come on here in just a second. I want to share with you something to this book is brought to you. By I mean, this podcast this book is brought to you by my podcast, REI Secrets. You can get this book right now for free. Just pay a little shipping and handling at REI Secrets.com. This book is Daily Nuggets of Real Estate Investing Wisdom to help you get more leads, close more deals and what ultimately make more money.
Joe: And this book is broken up into chapters. One of my friends and students called this book The Tools of Titans for real estate investors. Now, I don't know if I can accept that. That's Tim Ferris's famous book, Tools of Titans, but this is a book broken up into daily chapters of just a couple of pages sharing just random wisdom and insight into real estate investing for real estate investors on how to make more money doing deals. We're all trying to do the same thing. And even in a difficult market or even in an easy market, it doesn't matter. Learning these little simple REI secrets can help you explode, explode your business. So this is a great book. You should get it and you can get it for free. Just pay shipping and handling. You can't get it on Amazon, so don't even go there. Go to REISecrets.com Shipping, I think is seven or eight bucks. Not sure.
Joe: I actually lose money on every book that somebody buys, but when you buy the book, I'm going to give you some opportunities to upgrade and get some other school special bonus things. And it'll also I'll also get your email so you can be on my newsletter. I email my list every single day. Cool things, things that I'm learning, things that I'm doing, announcements for videos and for podcasts and. Yeah, cool. So good. REI Secrets.com. I promise I will spam you. I'm just kidding. I will email you every day and if you don't like the emails, just unsubscribe. But I will promise you this. I will sell you stuff. So that's just the way business works. And if you don't mind me just being honest with you, we got Zack Booth in the house. Zack, how are you doing?
Zack: Doing good, thanks for having me, Joe.
Joe: I'm glad you're here. You're in Utah now. You were in Florida. All right. So you've been on my podcast before talking about driving four dollars, and you're really good at it. And it's really not that hard, is it? So you told me a long time ago, mean do this 40 day thing. And I thought, OK, cool, man. I said go for it. That's awesome. I thought that he's crazy because it's going to be way more work than he thought it was going to be. And hopefully you'd make some money on it, but you actually did really, really well with it. It was there was a lot of things that were challenging that you weren't expecting. And so I wanted to get you on the podcast to talk about it. So first, give a little background of who you are. Where are you at? How did you get to real estate? Real quick, just real quick.
Zack: I used to be a window washer, actually, my professional life. So did that for almost a decade. I had a little window cleaning business and it was OK. You know, I did OK paycheck to paycheck for the most. Hart and the outside looking in, it looked like I was more successful than I probably was and I had three trucks and 13 employees and I worked very hard. You know, I started a business actually when I was 17 years old. I was doing that was in high school, and I was very proud of it. I learned a lot of awesome life lessons. I learned about how to build a business and manage people. And I got some great things from it. But there was some things that really pushed me out of it. I didn't love it. I didn't love the industry. It wasn't what I aspired to do. I had a business partner eventually after I had run it for about six, seven years. And we had completely different ideas where the business should go and what we should do with it. And I was definitely not providing a life for my family that I wanted.
Zack: And so I had bought a duplex back in 2011 and I was doing house hacking, living in one side and renting the other and called house hacking background. I don't know. I just thought I was smart, but I thought I had come up with the idea, you know, everyone was doing it, I guess. And but I loved it. Right, because I could rent the one half for like seven hundred and fifty bucks and my payment was like four hundred bucks. I got an amazing deal. So bank foreclosure put a ton of sweat equity into it. I mean, it had standing water in the basement when I bought it. It was great. You know, I still own it. I actually sold it like two years ago. I bought it for 60 and I sold it two years ago for two hundred and forty. So I ended up being a really good deal for me, you know, on top of all the rent that I made. So it was a great deal and it was my first experience with real estate. And I was like, man, this is this beats window washing, my shoulders not hurting. I'm not climbing ladders and risking my life like I want more of this. But I kept hitting all these obstacles. Right, like debt-to-income ratio, being able to qualify for loans, down payments. I didn't have the ability to get into it that way.
Joe: There's somebody I know and I won't say his last name, but your name is Greg and you might be watching this right now. And you know who you are. And you're you can relate to Zack Booth's story right now. So pay attention to what Zack and I know this guy and he cleans windows.
Zack: So really how cool is that. I think a lot of people can relate. Right. Like they're wanting a better life, a better financial situation. They may love their job. They may hate their job, but they're wanting to, like, produce more. They want to have that more freedom, more financial freedom, more time freedom. And it kind of changed for me. And I had kind of dabbled, tried to do some stuff. And on my you know, I thought about buying a house and then moving into it and just keep doing that right. Doing the BR strategy and uprooting my family. And then my wife got pregnant and I didn't want to move them around all the time, even though we did a little bit to pick up a few more. But it became really taxing on the family. And this is just not a sustainable business. This is like I want to be a family man. I want to have my kids. I want to establish reestablish. I want to have financial freedom. I don't want to wash windows anymore. I tried flipping a house that was a nightmare. I hate managing flips. I hate dealing with contractors. I was there Christmas Eve. It was just it was horrible, horrible.
Zack: And I was like, hey, there's got to be a better way. There's got to be a way for me to get started in real estate with no money. And then I learned about something called real estate wholesaling, where you buy property or you find properties at a discount and you push the opportunity onto a flipper to buy and hold investor and you get paid. What year was this? I learned about wholesaling back in about two thousand and 15 or so 2014, and I paid for a mentor. I struggled really bad, took a shotgun approach with my marketing meaning I was trying a little bit of everything and I didn't really produce any leads was very discouraging. I got credit card debt to do a lot of this stuff. So paying off credit card debt, I kind of lost my taste for it. I got really frustrated. I was building furniture and doing side jobs and doing construction on the side of my window cleaning business, working eighty hours a week, doing whatever I had to feed my family and pay off these debts. And I got discouraged for a while.
Joe: Let's touch on that for a little bit. Like what was this coach or program that you bought telling you to do that was wrong or were you just not applying it, or was it stupid dumb advice? What was it?
Zack: Yeah, I won't say who it was because I don't want to bash anybody. Right. And my goal is not to for me was no, Joe was not you. I probably wouldn't be here. Right. I love you. All right. So I bought a I bought a program that it was all about how much information they shared. It was all about information. It was information overwhelmed. They were not action steps. They weren't like, OK, in thirty days to sixty days. Our goal is to get you your first wholesale deal. These are the steps one through ten. Right. Just do them. It was we have five thousand hours of videos and we've got this giant binder to go through. And I'm learning about short sales and foreclosures and lease options and all these. Like everything under the sun, there was no like clear path or what we're supposed to do. I learned about subject to I learned a lot and a lot of that information I use today. So it wasn't like it was a waste of money at the time. I thought it was right.
Joe: And today the problem was that it wasn't just hyper focused on one strategy. It was giving you a smorgasbord, kind of giving you a college education. Would you say? I guess it's kind of the difference between a bachelor's degree and a. It's a dream like an associates specified technical degree. You know what I mean? Yeah, like you can get a degree just on Vassy,right?
Zack: Exactly. Like a tech degree. Like a yeah. A trade. You become a specialist in a trade. Right. And I wanted to be a wholesaler. I wanted to get good at making money in real estate from scratch with no money. Right. So I got discouraged. I kind of gave up for I didn't give up. I was still listening to a podcast. Why is Washington doesn't pay off those debts? And I mean, I had a lot of bad taste in my mouth for gurus for a time. And then I had the opportunity to meet Cody Huffine actually with Wholesaling Inc at the time, and his business partner, Tom Croll, and I joined their program at the very beginning of twenty seventeen. So this was not very long ago.
Joe: As we're recording this four years ago, four years ago. And that's a great example. Wholesaling ink is hyper focused on wholesaling. That's what they teach, that's what they coach you on. Very simple, like forget everything else, just do this and then do this and then do that. That's why they've been so successful. All right. Cool.
Zack: And part of the reason that I got faith again and I went and spent another nine thousand dollars on coaching is because I was washing windows for this very wealthy gentleman named Stan Nelson. And he's about 80 years old at the time. And I haven't talked to him in a long time. But I was talking to him washing his giant mansion. And I found out he was a real estate developer. And he was you know, he was talking about how he'd become financially free. And I was of course, I was eating it up. I want to learn everything. We talk for like two hours and the end of the conversation, it's like I like to pick up two rentals this year. He said, oh, that's convenient. I've got these two properties. I haven't collected rents in four months. Property manager bailed on me. I mean, I don't want to deal with them, you know, I don't have time to deal with it. I was like, oh, I'd love to buy them. And he says, great, let's do it. And he wanted a half a million for both of them, which was a massive discount. There were one acre horse properties, beautiful homes, and he gave them to me at a price at a massive discount, over one hundred-thousand-dollar discount. And he gave them to me seller finance a couple thousand dollars down for both of them. He just handed the properties over to me. I remember being terrified because he's like, OK, well, let's put together an agreement like right there.
Zack: He pulled out a piece of white paper and started writing down the agreement. I was like, whoa, don't we need a real contract? I'm trying to talk them out of doing this deal. Right. I had no idea what I was doing. But anyways, I ended up selling those properties like a year and a half later. I did lease options, Joe, by the way, I rented them out with tenants and they actually exercised their right. I made over one hundred thousand dollars profit. And I was like, you know, if they hadn't cashed out. But I knew what I had once I had them under contract and I became a believer like man like that was a hardy was more experienced, more knowledgeable, everything. And I found these amazing deals because I found the right person and I talked to the right person. I built a relationship. If I can get good at doing this, if I can find more sellers consistently and find a way to do it, I can do this business.
Zack: Like that is way better than window cleaning. I just had a three-hour conversation, a little bit of work, put a property management in place and I just made, you know, over one hundred grand and a couple of years, like do a couple of deals a year. And I'm just I'm making way more than washing windows. And so and I loved it, too. I mean, talking to that guy, I learned so much. He's such a sweet person. Like, it was wonderful, is wonderful to connect with them. So I joined I started looking for coach, started listening and hired Tom and Cody. And I'm not friends with both of them, you know, and it's kind of crazy. And I talked to Cody is going to go to Maui this week and talk to him a couple of days ago. But anyways, I join their program and within a couple of months, I did my first wholesale deal where I sold the purchase contract for ten thousand dollars. And it was like, this is amazing. How did you find the deal? I found it by sending postcards to an absentee owner list. And the situation was the sellers. They were experienced investors as well. Believe it or not, it was a corporate owned property.
Zack: And what had happened is these two business partners had kind of had a falling apart and they had over one hundred rentals at some point. But it's their very last property. They held together very last one. And so when they got my postcard, they're like, oh, it's our last one. Screw it like, just take it there. Just take. So they name the price. I sent them to DocuSign. I never met them. I went to the house once to put a lockbox on it and I sent my buyers and I got I got an offer for ten thousand dollars I think. All right, that was easy. You know, like this is awesome. And I was like, let's do more of this. And, you know, that's kind of how I got my start into wholesaling. And that was that was like the beginning of my journey. And of course, it's exploded. Since then, I've had a lot of success. And, you know, I got into coaching and I got into to doing driving four dollars out of necessity because I couldn't find deals at some point. But it's been an amazing journey. Joe really has. I feel very blessed.
Joe: Nice. OK, so that was twenty fifteen, twenty sixteen. Right.
Zack: No, so that was beginning of twenty. Seventeen is where I got to start. Four years ago.
Joe: All right, so then over the last couple of years what have you been doing?
Zack: Yeah. So by the end of 2017. Right, I did my first deal April twenty seventeen. By the end of that year I'd done just a little over one hundred thousand. It was like one hundred and eighteen hundred and fifty in wholesale fees and I had I'd quit washing windows. I told my partner cash me out or pay me, pay me my profit share, I'm done. I don't care, I don't want to deal with it anymore. Basically walked away with hopes that I'd get paid and or let the business think I didn't care I was done and which was sad, you know, built it for ten years. I was just so burnt out and so excited about real estate anyway, that the next year, January and February, I didn't do a deal like leads had dried up where I had been doing most of my leads were code violations and evictions. And those two lists all of a sudden became available on a state wide website for all the different counties.
Zack: And so every investor could quickly just open up a url and get all of the addresses to start marking to it. And now I was completely competing with all the big dogs, had all the marketing dollars. I'm only sending postcards. I'm not texting, cold, calling, doing everything else they're doing. And I was just getting squashed like a cockroach. Like Mr. Wonderful says on Shark Tank. I was just getting obliterated. Like, gosh, they get like, if I going to have to go get a job, you know, I walked away from window cleaning. I had a little tiny bit in savings, but I was like, you know, what am I going to do? So I started looking for ways to find discounted properties. I got to find a way to find discounted properties where I'm not competing with everyone in there and their contractor. Right. So I started researching and like how to find this kind of properties. And I came across this YouTube video, this old YouTube video about driving four dollars. And this is before deal machine. This is before the apps. This is before driving four dollars app.
Joe: You remember who did it, by the way?
Zack: I don't. I would love to give that person credit. They deserve the credit because it changed my life. But I don't remember. There was there was a drive for dollars video. And basically you drive around, you look for houses that need work. You write down the addresses, look up the information. And county records took forever to build a list of any size. But I remember I worked with someone whose name was Dax. He was a citizen here, not a city inspector. He was an appraiser. And he was going around and helping me out of these addresses. And I was too. We built a list of seventy. Right. Whose how many properties? Tiny, tiny list. But we pulled the deal out of it. All right. I can make some money. Seventy properties. And I think it was like seven. I don't even remember how big the deal was. I should know that. Right. But it was like anywhere between seven and nine thousand dollars. What I put in my pocket after partnering with him.
Zack: I'm like, OK, if I get deals off that. So then I started like recruiting all these people and they're driving for me and starting to try and figure out a system to do driving for dollars. Long story short, by the end of that year, so by the end of twenty eighteen, we'd done just shy of a half a million dollars. Wow. Yeah. Before deal machine. The very last like two or three months of the year. We started using an app who was called Driving for dollars. It's very inferior compared to what the machine is today. Right. You could, you could add properties a lot quicker because you could just like tap the houses and uploads an Excel spreadsheet. But you don't know where you drove. Right? There's no tracking software. Sothen I'm having to, like, figure out, have I driven this neighborhood? I'm not missing neighborhoods. I'm double driving areas. I'm not sure what I tagged, what I did. It's a it's a mess. It was a nightmare. Right. And but still, by the end of that year, we'd done a half a million. And I mean, I overpaid people because I'm paying percentages of every deal to my driver, try to get all these bird dogs. And but I had, like, done really well. And I was like, this is amazing, you know, like I'm pinching myself. I never made that kind of money.
Zack: And we were able to go to Hawaii and I went to Alaska fishing. And I you know, I started to be able to have some freedoms that I had never had before and being able to do things with my family and spoiled my wife that I love dearly. And so towards the end of that year, I'm looking towards the next year goals. Right. What does my twenty nineteen goals going to be? What am I going to accomplish? And I started reading a self-help journal called Living Your Best Year Ever, and it talks about giving away whatever you wanted to receive. So I had set one of my you have to set three big goals. One of those big goals was to generate a million dollars the next year. I had no idea how, but in the book it said I had to give away whatever I wanted to receive. So I had to give away a million dollars show. And I say, OK, well, I have like maybe one hundred thousand in savings, was very proud of that, but I don't have no million dollars. And so I was like, OK, what do I do? How do I give away a million bucks to talk to my wife about it? And I was like, OK, I have an idea, why don't I just teach people my marketing system?
Zack: Teach people what put a half a million into my pocket. I brought on ten guinea pigs, basically, and I and I was like, the whole purpose of this is to put a million dollars in you guys businesses. Let's do this. And it was crazy. The more I taught, the more I learned, the more I taught, the more questions I got, the more questions I got, the more holes I found in my own business. And it completely changed my business, completely changed the marketing system that I have today. You know, by the end of that year, I did one point two million dollars in wholesale fees. Wow. And one flip. And I was shocked. I was like, this is just mind blowing. I was so grateful. I was so overwhelmed with gratitude. But the most beautiful part of that to me and what I'm most grateful for is I fell in love with coaching. I fell in love with seeing someone else be successful. You know, I tell people all the time, you know, your first day is exhilarating and life changing. Your second deals like awesome. You know, it's going to happen again and again and again. Third deals, a lot of work. And you don't remember your fourth and fifth. Right. It's just it's just work at that point.
Zack: But every time a student does our first deal, I get that same euphoria. I get that same feeling that you can call helper's high. There's a lot of terms for it. Yeah. And I fell in love with coaching, you know, my first few students, Scott Dallinger, you know, his first day I was like one hundred- and thirteen-thousand-dollar assignment fee. One hundred and thirteen thousand quit his corporate job. They're doing amazing. He just had his his first little boy, George and cute family. They were cool and he's in Portland and they're like, who are some of my other very first students, Sergei in Orlando? He actually came and spent some time with me on the 40 day challenge. And Michael McLeese in Greenville, South Carolina. Yeah, his first six months, he was going to double his entire previous year or actually surpass his entire his entire previous year and just six months of implementing the system. So it's really cool. Like we had just a lot of success and people that you may know now because they're doing a lot in the industry and there's lots more.
Zack: And I don't mean to miss out on everyone, but it was it was really cool to see that happen, you know? And I just fell in love with coaching and I really started pushing the coaching. And I've been doing that for a couple of years. And, you know, by getting into coaching and like becoming falling in love with it and wanting to do that is kind of like going from window cleaning to real estate. I was like, OK, now real estate coaching. And so now I have a team that's automated. Right. I had to put that in place to keep the money coming in so I could focus on the coaching. And I wasn't really making money coaching yet. And so I have an acquisition manager and a team and people that drive for me, like I don't do any of it. I look at my KPIs and go to my team meetings. I spent about two, three hours a week and my wholesaling business. And at the close of the first quarter this year, we'll do about four hundred thousand dollars in wholesale fees this year. So far. And I don't do any of the appointments. I hadn't gone on a seller's appointment in two years except for that 40 day challenge. So it's kind of fun to be like in the trenches again, doing that challenge.
Joe: All right. So let's talk about the 40 day challenge. How did you get this crazy idea?
Zack: Well, remember how I was I was a skeptic for a time after I hired that first coach and I met Stan Nelson. Right. I became a believer again because I saw it happen. Right. I met a motivated seller. I saw it. I saw that I didn't take advantage of him. I kind of thought, like, OK, if you get property 50 cents on the dollar, you're shady. But, you know, it was convenient for him. He was wealthy. He didn't need the money. He wanted the convenience over the price. He liked me like, you know, he knew way more than me. I was like, OK, like having that experience gave me the confidence. And Tony Robbins talks about this. Right. His cycle of success, he says, to tap into our full potential as human beings and children of God. Basically, he says, you have to have a massive belief. If you don't have a massive belief, you don't give massive action. If you don't give massive action, you don't get massive results. And if you do get those massive results right, you have more confidence and you have more belief and you spiral upwards in life. But if you start off with like maybe it'll work, I don't know, I'll give it a try for thirty days. Right. Maybe you give a halfhearted effort, you give you get halfhearted results and you have more disbelief and you spiral downwards. Right.
Zack: And so I was up late at night thinking, how do I help people. Right. How do I help people put money in their pockets. Right. Like that's my mission behind my coaching. Yeah. And so I was like, how do I help inspire them to give them this belief that I know that they need they need to believe in themselves. They need to believe in the process that they're approaching. It was about them. It wasn't about me or like showing off what I can do. It was about how do I inspire other people. And I had recently watched Undercover Billionaire where he'd gone out and taken a hundred-dollar bill. And his goal is to build a million-dollar company in 90 days and fly to a whole nother market. Right. Like I loved it. It was inspiring. It made me hungry to, like, conquer the world. And so I was like, you know what? Like, why don't I do that? Why don't I give other people the opportunity to look over my shoulder and see me interacting with another type of Stan Nelson? Right. Talking to sellers and seeing that it's hard work and you have to be frustrated and, you know, and want to cry and want to give up.
Zack: But if you push hard and follow these action steps, you can be successful. So that's why I did it. I wanted to give belief to people that they could do it. You know, I think sometimes they see people like Joe McCall or Tony Robbins or they see, you know, the Tom Crowell's, you know, my mentor, like, they see they see these very successful people and they go they're just they're made different. Right? They're special. They're celebrities. They're you know, because, you know, I remember, you know, Joe McCall’s, a celebrity, me and I would listen to a podcast. And like these people were like there were they were beyond what I could reach. And I wanted people to like, see that I'm just as goober dude that really does not know that much about real estate. I know more about with no cleaning you can do about real estate. Right. But I'm still able to do this. So that's the whole point of it. That's why I did it. That's why I want people to watch the challenge. It's for them. It's not for me. It's not for me to sign up more students. It's not for me, of course, that's going to happen. But that's not the purpose. The purpose is to help other people. And my hope especially is if you have a dream, a type of business or something that you've had a desire to do good, do that, don't do real estate. I want to inspire people to go for their dreams. That's my ultimate goal in life. Yeah. So that's why I did it.
Joe: All right, cool. So you are in Utah. You decided how you why and how did you pick Florida?
Zack: Well, it was wintertime and I'm not even kidding.
Joe: I'm not impressed anymore. If you were to pick like Fargo, North Dakota in the winter, then I would be impressed.
Zack: If I was going to go embrace the suck. I was going to have some sunshine to make it a little easier, whatever.
Joe: All right, so what market in Florida do you pick?
Zack: I picked Tampa, I was actually going to go out on close to Port St. Lucie so I could be close to Tom so I could hang out with him a little bit while I was there. But I was like, you know, what? If I'm going to go to a new market, I'm going to do all of the legwork to basically open a new market. Right. I'm going to build the cash buyers of the title company in the in the in the attorney and all the foundational pieces. And if I'm going to do all that work, why don't I just open a new market? Why don't I replace myself? And so I was like, well, let's do a bigger metropolitan area so I have more houses. So ultimately, that could be a long-term sustainable business there. How many kids do you have? I have two.
Joe: All right. Wife and two kids. And you're going to leave them for 40 days. This isn't like you're flying down there for a few days and coming back and going back and forth, right? Yeah. You're going to stay down there in Florida by yourself. And what a hotel would you stay in?
Zack: We rented Airbnb. The plan was, you know, 40 days without my family was tough enough. The plan was the first month I'd be by myself, you know, and my wife's from Brazil. So they actually flew down to be with my in-laws for those first 30 days. And then she was supposed to fly back and be with me the last 10 days. And I missed them so bad. That was the hardest part of the entire challenge, is I've done it before.
Joe: Like two or three days is hard enough without your wife and kids.
Zack: Oh, I have so much respect for our armed forces and our first responders and people that spend so much time away from their family. Like, I got very emotional and cried about it, thinking about it a few times, about those people that leave their families for months at a time frequently tip our hats to our U.S. servicemen and women.
Joe: All right, cool. All right. So you were going to you stayed in there, but most of the time then?
Zack: I was in Airbnb just in between, like, it's a little place called Brandon in Tampa. Just stayed in a little Airbnb there.
Joe: So you brought a thousand dollars with you. Did that thousand dollars cover your Airbnb?
Zack: No, no. It covered my marketing. I wanted to show it covered marketing, it didn't cover housing, didn't cover my car, gas, those kinds of things. Or cell phone.
Joe: All right. Yeah. So your goal is to make 40 grand in 40 days in a new market. You chose Tampa. Your wife and two kids are in Brazil, and their plan was to be there for 30 days and then come back for the last 10 days to hang out with you. Your house in Utah. Did you just rent it out or anything? You just?
Zack: I didn't want to worry about it. I just kind of turn the water off.
Joe: And so then what was your plan to do and then what did you actually do?
Zack: Well, I wasn't sure. I mean, the thing is, is I've never done this before and I had told everybody about it. So, I mean, everyone knew and I was doing lives on it and uploading content before I ever even got home. And I didn't know if I'd be successful. I knew that I would do what I teach. Right. Which is, first of all, build a list of people that wanted to sell their house at a discount or highly or higher chances of people who want to sell their house at a discount. So doing driving four dollars, drove around, found those ugly houses. And I thought I was might text message and or just call do cold calling.
Joe: Now somebody is going to ask, Zack. There's these new things now, these new apps where you can do virtual driving for dollars right from the part of your warmth home in Utah. Why can't you just do virtual driving for dollars using Google Maps Street View in Tampa?
Zack: Yeah, that's a great question. So it sounds sexy, right? And it makes sexy content for a YouTube video. Right. I'll do virtual driving. It's so easy. Doesn't work, guys. So we've tested it. We split, tested it. And the reason it doesn't work. I'll tell you why. I don't think it doesn't work. It doesn't work because the numbers don't work. Right. They just don't add up. You don't make running data, not drama. Exactly. So we've tested it. We've had students to do it. It's kind of funny side stories. I had students like Zack Systems not working and I'm like trying to dig into his business. What's going on? I found out he's doing virtual drive for dollars. I was like, dude, you got to do what I tell you to do to be successful in many times. So why doesn't it work, do you think? Yeah, the issue is the Google Maps images are old, right? The they don't drive by every week. If they did, that would be fantastic. Use it. But it's not new. Enough data in my market. I actually drive every single neighborhood every six months. Right. That's more often than they are than, you know, Google Street Images. And the reason is you're trying to catch properties that currently have physical signs of neglect and you really want to catch those properties that are actually not in terribly bad shape. But they look vacant.
Zack: There's a couch and a sofa and a mattress on the front lawn. You can tell it's going through a transition period. There's a moving truck like those are the properties that are like, boom, that's the time to catch them. And so we drive very often. So actually being out there and driving and we also make a tag for properties that one hundred percent look abandoned or vacant and we make a special effort. So while I was in Tampa, I had like sixty properties that I put on that like super vacant, abandoned looking properties, only 60 to 70. And I got one of my deals from that.
Joe: All right. So explain what driving for dollars is for somebody who's new, doesn't know.
Zack: So drive for dollars is where you get in. Your car and you drive around and you look for houses that have physical signs of neglect, the whole purpose is that is if someone doesn't love the house, it's a thorn in their side. They don't want to deal with it. They don't take care of general maintenance. Right. And if it's a thorn in their side, they very well likely will sell it to you at a discount. So you're putting together that list, basically putting on an Excel spreadsheet and then you reach out and see if they want to sell. That is that's what we're doing. It's our marketing strategy to find off market discounted opportunities. Whether you want a wholesale, whether you want to flip them, whether you want to keep them as rentals and then or buy them and lease option them to someone, whatever you want to do, like you got to find the deal first. So that's what drive for dollars is finding the deals.
Joe: All right. So then how do you pick the markets to drive through?
Zack: You know, I would start with where you live. So a lot of people like, how does it work where I live? And it's like the whole point of going to Utah, to Florida was to show that it doesn't only work in Utah and also it doesn't only work in Florida, it's all across country work. So my advice is, is if you have a population, preferably of one hundred thousand people or more within a 20 mile, ten mile radius, that's a great area. Right? There's houses being flipped, there's houses being rented. There's investors. You can do this in that area. You know, if you need to drive an hour to a little bit bigger metropolitan area to do this, you can do this. I've actually found that you're out skirting markets outside your main metropolitan areas. Like if you're in Dallas, you drive a little bit outside of Dallas and some of the smaller suburban areas where people are not marketing to like they're not on the generic list you drive through and five, 10, 20 to one hundred rundown properties, you might make pretty darn good money off that little tiny list.
Joe: All right. So you drive around and there's an app that you like to use called Deal Machine. Deal Machine. Yet we're currently using the machine. All right. So then what do you do? You find a vacant house and does this app I'm asking these questions for somebody who doesn't know what does this have to do and help you with tips.
Zack: OK, so Deal Machine is an app that allows you to add properties quickly. And what that means is basically when you open up this app, OK, it'll have kind of a street image like kind of like Google Maps. So you know how Google Maps on your phone, you can see where you're driving, you can see the houses. It's kind of the same technology. Right. But then you see, let's say you're driving through the neighborhood, you're looking at your map and you're looking at the houses and you see a house that needs love that you would like to market to and see if they want to sell. So what you do is there's a couple of different versions, a couple of ways to capture that house. You can take a picture of the house. You can there's some parts of the machine we don't use. Right. So we don't use that. We use what's called the tap to add.
Zack: So you have to set that in your settings. And all you have to do is touch the house on the screen and it'll take all of the information of the owner and upload that into an Excel spreadsheet for you. So then you can have that nice Excel spreadsheet. You can add thirty to over one hundred properties every single hour driving around. That's what we do. And then once you have that Excel spreadsheet, you can export it out and have this nice clean Excel spreadsheet or within the machine. You can send postcards to it, you can call it. You can whatever you need to do, you can all be done within the machine. We don't use all of those functions. We do export out our list and get phone numbers elsewhere and send postcards elsewhere just for a little bit better pricing. But yeah, that's how we have it set up and it tracks where you drive.
Joe: So you're not driving the same streets.
Zack: You have to. That's an option that you can have. But yes, one hundred percent, that is a huge function. So we'll hit start drive and then it'll highlight the street sort of color. And for you. And the cool part about this is since I really drive those markets every six months, it color coordinates. How long ago you drove it so so your driver that you hire because I don't want to do this forever. Right. And neither will you. You can hire someone. It's going to be very easy for them to look at the map and go, OK, what has a red driven in six months? And they go drive that area and a real refresh the color code that it's been driven. So it's a really good way to stay organized. What needs to be driven, what hasn't been driven in a while. So it's very, very awesome.
Joe: You know, I'm thinking, as you're talking about, this is I can have my boys do that. At least one of them who's seventeen. Right. I can pay him hourly rate or by a percentage of a deal could night using a driving four dollars app. He's a good driver. Yeah, what a great idea. All right. So Deal Machine can skip trace these leads for you and send letters for you. Right. But you prefer just to save a little bit of money. There's other services that you use that will save you a little money on the skip tracing, right. Yeah. Yeah, you can do it in there. So, so you know, how long do you typically drive a day or when you're in Florida, how many hours did you drive a day?
Zack: I tried to call during prime times, so I ended up cold calling as a strategy for outreach side cold call in the mornings, in the evenings and then dead times in the afternoon is when I drive. Which is actually the best time to drive because there's no one in the neighborhoods. They're quiet. So you don't have cars pulling in and out, you don't have kids playing in the street. It's just really easy and it's the safest time to drive to work. So I would I would drive a couple hours a day and cold call about four hours a day, five hours a day or more. But, you know, you've got to keep in mind why is doing this challenge? I still have my coaching business, all my students that I'm serving, and I'm still kind of sitting in and listening on team meetings and looking at KPIs from my wholesaling business and helping answer questions there. So I'm still running two businesses while I'm still. Basically starting a new business.
Joe: Crazy, and also you have a camera guy with you the whole time, right? Yeah, that was another challenge in and of itself. Would you agree?
Zack: Oh, it was the worst, but I hated it. Like, I love my camera guy. But the problem was, is like, OK, I'm going to go do this. And I had to be like, wait to get the shot. Like, Hey, hold on, don't come outside yet. I'm going to get you walking up. We're going to do the interview. We've got to tell people what we got going on. I was like, I'm just wanting to get stuff done because I got I'm putting a square peg in a round hole all day, every day. You know, it was just it was tough. It was very tough.
Joe: All right. So you would cold call in the morning, drive for about two or three hours a day, and then cold call in the evening. You know, if you if you were to drive for two or three hours, how many houses would you typically get in that two- or three-hour window?
Zack: So I was being it depended on the area, but my average was probably about 60 to 70 houses every hour of driving.
Joe: Wow. Yeah, quite a few. Do you think that's because of the neighborhood you're in? If you were to be in a newer subdivision in the suburbs, you probably wouldn't find as many vacant houses, right?
Zack: One hundred percent. I only drive houses that are blue collar, middle to lower income areas within the market. I don't drive the high-end areas. Right.
Joe: How cool is that? You're not getting out of the car. You're not knocking on doors necessarily, right?
Zack: Yeah. The only time I did is if I like the door was open and it looked vacant. And there was a couple of times like I think three or four occasions where I jumped out of the car because the door was open. It looked like it was going through a transition period. Landlords there cleaning it out. And I talked to him, had a good conversation. They weren't deals. They weren't opportunities. But, yeah, you can jump out of your car and talk to people. I have a student in actually in Orlando that does a ton of that that does a lot of door knocking, especially when he was starting out in his first couple of months door knocking me like thirty grand so it can be done. Door knocking It's just it's not the most time efficient, but it's free. Right. Like you don't have to pay for marketing.
Joe: OK, so you were driving for dollars, then you get the phone numbers and a spreadsheet. You skip tracing. Even if the owners were LLCs, where you still skip tracing those. Yes, you'd get phone numbers of the owners of these vacant houses. And then what would you use to cold call them?
Zack: Yeah, so there's multiple dialing platforms. I'm using mojosales.com. It's and I'm not getting paid to say any of this stuff, by the way. But it's a cold calling platform where I can call three people at one time. So it'll pop up who I'm calling and then if someone answers, it'll pull up their screens. It's got the link to Zillow, the address, the property, how many bedrooms, bathrooms, everything. So I can have a conversation about that house. If I'm talking to someone and someone else answers, I have a recording that goes, Hello, hello. I'm going to have to call you back. I mean, hangs up on him, right? And then soon as I get off the phone, it calls that person back. That way, I'm just blowing through phone numbers and calling and talking as much.
Joe: Does it leave them a voicemail?
Zack: You can't have it do a voice mail drop. I don't do that because I have found I actually have more people and it's faster if I don't leave a voicemail or anything. I have a lot of curious people there like, who's this? Because I get a phone number for that area code and then they just come back and they call back and my voice recording to that phone number go straight to voicemail so they quickly get my voicemail. It quickly says, Hey, I'm Zack. I was calling you about a house I thought you may want to sell anyways. If you want to sell your house, leave me your name and number and address. I'll get right back to you. I'm from appointment to appointment, and if they leave me a voicemail, I call them back. But if I get those calls back on those numbers, I can see and I just scroll through. If I have a voicemail, I'll call them back and we pull deals off that.
Joe: Do you think because I've wrestled with this, the whole quality versus quantity argument with cold calling? Right. We do a lot of deals from cold calling as well. We use mojo cells and it's been good. But like with a tool like freedom soft, you can dial one number at a time. And there seems to be some advantages to that. Sometimes you get a little lag in mojo cells, which is frustrating with REI simple or freedom soft. It's more quickly, quick and direct. You can click. It just dials one number at a time, but then if you get a voicemail, you can leave them a personalized message. Hey, Jim, I'm calling about your house. One, two, three, Main Street. And then you can also quickly send them a text. Hey, I just left your voice mail. Call me back. So what's your where do you fall on that debate? Is it better to dial three numbers at a time, as many numbers as possible?
Zack: Well, I think, Joe, you said it best, right? It's data, not drama. I think that if you if you're unsure or curious, don't let it be an emotional decision, but test it now. So we have split up our driving four dollars list for the last year into corporate owned, Owner-Occupied, absentee owner and the vacant list or what we perceive as the vacant list. Right. What we identify is potentially vacant and most of our deals are coming out of absentee because it's a bigger list. But our highest percentage of revenue, like we're spending almost no money on marketing to deals is the vacant list. Right. So with that being said, my acquisition manager, cold calls the vacant list and whoever he can't get a hold of, he's texting personally and then whoever he still can't get a hold of, we're sending postcards. And then when he's out in the area, he has those properties. I'll go knock on the doors. Right. We really are hungry for that list. Right.
Zack: And we try and get to him quickly because we know it's the most profitable list, absentee owners, the next best one and then owner occupied and then corporate owned, but corporate owned is a very small list actually. So and it's you actually have the worst data for phone numbers on there. So we'll send postcards usually to that one after we call it once or twice. So it's kind of however you want to approach it. The most important thing is to is to research it. So, you know, I haven't left voicemails for a couple of years. And the reason I stop doing that is I did wingless voice mail drops where I did a custom. It wasn't a customized voicemail, but I have taken the path of quantity over quality because I have so many addresses I want to get through two to three times. And I'm also texting them and I'm also sending postcards. So I'm really bombarding them. So one more thing of adding a voice mail. I'm not sure if it would add value, but have you tested that? I mean, have you seen the data on that?
Joe: No, I've listened to other people who have. And so I get people on both sides. I think whatever you're doing is what you should be doing, like, you know what I mean? Like my pastor always says, people ask him which translation is best. And he says, whichever one you're reading doesn't matter. The translation of the Bible, whichever one you're reading. So I think it just doesn't matter. Just whatever one you're doing, that's what works.
Zack: My advice on that is this. If you're spending less than twenty five percent of your gross revenue on marketing, you're in the money zone. Right? I'm spending we've been tracking Tampa since I left. And by the end of this quarter, we're going to be spending about six percent of our gross revenue on marketing dollars, which is the reason why I love cold calling for it. But in Utah, where we're texting postcards, cold calling everything, we're spending about 14 percent of our gross revenue on marketing.
Zack: If I spend twenty five percent of my gross revenue on marketing, that still leaves me about thirty percent to thirty-to-thirty five percent to pay my team acquisition managers, all my fixed costs, everything else. I'm still going to be able to pull about a 40 percent profit margin out of my business, which is what we're trying to do. Right. We're trying to take a profit at the end of the day and not have to work in our business. We want our businesses to serve us. So that's my suggestion is find a marketing channel that you can spend less than twenty five cents to make a dollar and you're in business.
Joe: That's a great business to be. And there's very few businesses in the world that are that good. Yeah. All right. So talk about I don't know if I should ask you this on a podcast or offline when we're done. Let's talk about the do not call list. Right. What do you tell people to do?
Zack: Talk to your attorney. Talk to your attorney.
Joe: All right. Because that's frustrating, isn't I mean, you spent a lot of time driving for dollars and you're skip tracing these properties and some of the numbers come up on the do not call list. So it's a gray area because you could argue that it's a business, a business. It's an absentee owner right there in the business of renting properties. Oh, shoot. I only got five minutes left. We might have to break this up into a second podcast. I just got a notice of a meeting I have in five minutes. Let's do that, Zack. We're going to break this up into two podcasts, OK? Because I want to hear more about what you actually did, some of the challenges that you faced and what would you have done differently on this practice. But just give us a high-level view that would dive deeper into the details in the next podcast. At the end of the challenge, you had to leave early. Twenty-eight days into it, right. Because your wife's family got sick and so had some family issues coming up and you miss them anyway. So you get a pass, but you get seven properties under contract. How many of you close so far and how many are getting ready to close?
Zack: We've closed three and one of them fell apart because lien issues. So there's four gone. We have one closing this week. No, it'll close next week. I actually just found that out for fifty thousand dollars and a fifty-thousand-dollar assignment fee next week. So that's five. And then I've got one closing next week as well. That's twelve thousand five hundred and I have one that might be another twenty days or so because it's in a probate situation. We've got to finalize probate. We're going to make anywhere between 15 and 30, but I mean made well over one hundred thousand dollars on the challenge. I mean, it's awesome. It's awesome. I mean, and maybe we don't need to do another challenge. Maybe we just invite people to go watch the challenge.
Joe: And all the videos are on YouTube. Right. And where can they find that?
Zack: They can find it on my YouTube channel. So if they just search DFD mastery, so dfd for driving four dollars fifty mastery on YouTube or search. My name's Zack Boothe. It'll pull it up, find the forty-day challenge. Enjoy it. I think we have up to day thirteen but we have two episodes a week coming out and so they can see it day by day. They can see it happen. I mean for my most favorite day of the challenge, if you only want to watch one day watch day four, I got three contracts that day. It was a spiritual day. It was awesome stuff.
Joe: So go to YouTube, do a search for DFD or driving for mastery, and you get to see the videos of Zack struggling. I mean, when I was watching you, you were tired, you were hungry, you were frustrated. And I've only seen a couple of these videos. But man, it was inspiring to see that you could tell it was challenging. It was not easy. So just we're going to dove more into the details of what you actually did in the Future podcast. I think this is fascinating. This is so cool. All you did, again, was just driving for dollars, right?
Zack: That's it. I just I did what I know works. And another company. And I wanted to keep it simple, you don't need to have all these different tools and know everything there is to know about real estate, it is very simple.
Joe: All right, awesome. Go to YouTube, do a search for DFD Mastery, and you have a website somebody can go to, Zack?
Zack: Yeah, you can go to my website and learn more DFD Mastery Dotcom. But if you want to learn more about the coaching with me and want to talk to me about that, you can book a call. So if you go to DFDMastery.com/Joe. So that's DFD as you can see on the screen, or if you listen to it, it's dfd like drive four dollars, DFDMastery.com/Joe. And fill out the form. So I know a little bit more about you and then, then you can schedule a time on the calendar to, to speak with us and we'd be happy to help you.
Joe: Awesome. So cool. We got some comments real quick. Joe said 40 k by wholesaling or creative financing. Straight up boring wholesaling wasn't it?
Zack: Yeah, for the most part, yeah. Because I wanted to show just with a thousand bucks, but yes, you could get creative financing. I'm actually closing on a subject to today from one of my students in Tampa. So yes, you can take the leads and do subject to or creative financing if you want, if that's your goal as rentals. The whole point of the challenge is to show you how to find deals. I found seven deals. Yes, you could have gotten creative financing on those. Yeah. I mean, one of them was an inherited property. You could take over the deceased person's loan. It would have been like a guaranteed creative deal if you wanted.
Joe: All right. Very cool, guys. DFDMastery.com/Joe. I have to make like Michael Jackson and beat it, so I got to go. Thanks, Zack. We'll talk soon and talk to you soon. See you guys, everybody. Bye bye.