A how-to guide
Buyer FAQ

That’s great; cash is king and can definitely swing negotiations in your favor at times! But we will need to see a proof of funds from your bank before making offers.

We do need a pre-approval letter. This is more thorough than a pre-qualification and most Sellers will require it in order to entertain an offer.

We love sending houses out for people to research and see if it’s a good fit. However, we love sending them relevant houses way more! To do that, we' need the following from each prospective Buyer:

  • Rental Range
  • Price Range
  • Preferred Areas to Invest In
  • Whether or Not You Want to be Sent Off-Market Properties or MLS-only. You can also CLICK HERE to fill out our Buyer form!

Glad you asked! We deal with a lot of investors and many of them use LLCs to buy and sell through. There are some things to keep in mind to prevent a deal falling through or a severe delay in closing:

  • Please ensure your LLC taxes have been paid and are current
  • Make sure that your company is in good standing in the state that it is registered in When sending us your info, include the exact name of the LLC and the owner info as it appears on LLC documents

We sure do! See a list of our preferred vendors and their info below!
Also, check out this infographic about buying with CrestCore!

Seller FAQ

The simple answer is: $3,000 flat for listings under $50,000 and 6% total for listings over $50,000. This DOES include commissions for both sides; not just CrestCore. See the info below for more details on listing!

Glad you asked! We deal with a lot of investors and many of them use LLCs to buy and sell through. There are some things to keep in mind to prevent a deal falling through or a severe delay in closing:

  • Please ensure your LLC taxes have been paid and are current
  • Make sure that your company is in good standing in the state that it is registered in When sending us your info, include the exact name of the LLC and the owner info as it appears on LLC documents

  • We need to know if it’s vacant or occupied
  • We need to know what major updates/repairs have been done to the home in the last 12 months
  • We will need a copy of the lease and ledger for the tenant if occupied
  • If it’s not managed by CrestCore PM, then we will need a contact in the current management company to reach out to for the above info
NOTE: We will need this info at the listing stage; failure to provide can lead to a slight delay in listing/marketing.

As a sister company to a large management company, we pride ourselves in taking tenant happiness into consideration in our processes! We do not allow occupied homes/units to be accessed by prospective Buyers until an offer has been accepted by you. Secondly, we work with the Buyer’s inspectors/appraisers to schedule with minimal disruption and never tell the tenant the home is under contract. We also always have a CrestCore rep present at inspections to add a layer of accountability and security for the tenant.

Don’t worry; we get this one a lot! We do specialize in listing and selling investment homes, but keep in mind that we DO have a Retail Real Estate Agent, Alissa Fowler! She's an all-star in her field and comes with years of experience. We are equipped to get your home listed, with professional photos to be taken and we can set up showings as well. She will work for you as if you are her only client to make it as easy for you as possible.

We can get your house sold and always make sure you get top-dollar!

Welcome to the CrestCore-iculum!

Before we cover ‘where’ to start investing, I think we need to cover a topic that is just as important: how to OWN multiple rentals! Everyone starts at one, but ten seems to be the zone at which you’ll see a steady profit and one disaster won’t ruin your entire month. Then, how about fifteen? twenty?! How do I leverage my current portfolio to double it? Well, clear some time and check this out:
Maybe you have a couple of houses that you think aren’t performing up to your standards or are too hands-on; here are some ways for you to get them listed for great market prices and keep as much in your pocket as possible so you can successfully transition that unit:

Everyone loves asking about ZIP Codes and, ‘where should I buy?!’ Complex answer, but let’s try to give some rough guidelines!

People tend to want to divide Memphis into A/B/C/D areas, but it’s a little more complex than that. Memphis is very nearly street by street; neighborhoods, even, can be fairly fluid. BiggerPockets threads can be a great tool to help you out. Investors love discussing Memphis ZIPs online and these threads can help you out if you are on the fence about an area. (Just keep in mind to try to filter out the heavy ‘salt’ from some posters who may have made a mistake and are blaming the area unjustly.)

We DO recommend that out of state investors try to buy in to rentals at at least the $50,000+ range. This gets you into a much more solid tenant pool and the maintenance for the first two years are typically much more palatable. Also, in Memphis currently, $50,000-60,000 can get some killer returns, often landing you in the $700-800 rent range depending on the area.

For local investors who want to spend more time ‘in-the-weeds,’ there are a lot more options, some of which can be a percentage (or several) more profitable but these can absolutely test your nerve early on and will take a stronger stomach to get off the ground. These $30-40,000 all-in rentals will need a lot of attention and preening up-front but once they’re rolling, they can really keep some momentum if you’re buying in the right areas. One of the tradeoffs is that rent-readies tend to be a bit more demanding in the lower ranges and are generally tough to manage from afar. These will almost always fall under a BRRRR (Buy, Rehab, Rent, Refinance, Repeat) strategy.

Some investors want to go higher-end and not really worry too often about their units or their rent incoming. These types of investors will likely find Memphis has a lower buy-in than many other markets and still hold or exceed the 1% Rule. You can find SFRs in the $75-90,000 range in great, older areas with solid tenant pools that will typically rent for about $850-1,100. The main draw of these are that the maintenance is a lot easier on the owner as little was deferred on average by past owners. Also, vacancy is almost always less of an issue in these types of rentals and leases find an easier time getting renewed. The drawback will be the cost, obviously. Also, repairs will need to be of a higher quality unless you want to see a decrease in sales price when that day comes.

Maybe you NEVER want to think about your rentals! You want to pay, get it managed, and leave it alone as a truly passive income. Well, Memphis is a market for that ONLY IF you are buying prime rentals in incredible areas like Cordova, Arlington, Oakland, and other suburbs. You’ll likely want to stick with the all-in of at least $125-150,000+ and expect a tight fit to the 1% rule as rents have a hard time getting over about $1,495-1,650 here and leasing reliably. That said, the tenant pool will respect the home, pay on time, and have very few maintenance requests. This is some of the easiest ownership an investor could ask for and something we see a lot of success in. It’s not unheard of to buy a ‘starter home’ that was on the market as retail and rent it out to give renters a chance in an otherwise exclusive neighborhood. In these areas, sometimes it pays more to try to get into a great school district as well; these will land you great leases and for longer.

If you’re super-interested in low-income properties, then you should be aware that they will pose challenges along the way that higher-end units just won’t give you as often. There will be a rough tenant pool, higher maintenance, deferred maintenance up-front when buying, and higher turnover is more likely. Some people will think you’re crazy for going low-end! Well, there are ways to cope with it and buy solid deals with a great all-in rate. The key is knowing What to look out for in buying and how to stay on top of your management company about tenants and maintenance. Here is a series of videos about lower-end that we feel should garner its own space. Just know that some great returns can occur in these ranges, but the amount of attention they need and some upfront costs just simply may not be worth it most investors. We sell a lot of these from people who thought it sounded like a good idea but was just too hands-on for them once the ink dried.

For an awesome vizualization of the ZIP codes and their characteristics, browse through our ‘ZIP Code Primer’ HERE!

Lower income properties can lead to some risky business. Listen to Dan and Dean on as they talk about some key things to be aware of when investing in lower income properties.

With any property investment, you always want to make sure you have a tenant that is responsible and will pay on time. Listen as Dan and Dean discuss how to find a good tenant for those low income properties.

So, what about where to buy? Well, we would rather give you insight and you can use that in conjunction with your goals to decide where might be a good fit! Let’s go over some very popular ZIPs and how they compare to others:

The zip codes 38127 and 38128 in Memphis are some of the most popular zip codes to invest in. Listen as Dan and Dean go in-depth and compare the advantages and disadvantages of these two zip codes.

If your looking to invest in homes in the Bartlett area, then here as Dan and Dean discuss in detail the investment potentials in zip codes 38134, 38133, and 38135.

Get the scoop on real estate status of Memphis zip codes. Dan and Dean discuss 38118 and 38116 in this segment. Be sure to watch the other segments for zip code information.

Another awesome area to check out is Southeast Memphis (38115, 38125, 38141). This area has its rough patches, mainly in 38115 around Winchester/Hickory Hill. There are a lot of streets or entire neighborhoods of duplexes which are typically considered only by local investors, for instance; it can work, but they’re pretty hands-on for the Buyer. Now, in 38125 and 38141, these are going to be solid areas with $850-950 rentals in many cases, bringin in great tenants in safer neighborhoods. Check out the video below to get some more in-depth info:

Thinking about investing in some homes on the south side of Memphis? Listen here Dan and Dean discussion the ups and downs of zip codes 38115, 38141, and 38125.

Get the scoop on real estate status of Memphis zip codes. Dan and Dean discuss 38109, 38128, 38127, 38111, 38114 in this segment.

Get the scoop on real estate status of Memphis zip codes. Dan and Dean discuss 38016, 38018 and their top and bottom zip codes. Be sure to watch the other segments for zip code information.

Arlington is great place to invest in real estate and to grow your portfolio. Listen here for to learn market potential on Arlington TN zip codes 38002 and 38028 and the opinions on Dan and Dean's favorite and least favorite zip codes.

If you're an investor looking for homes in the Cordova area, then listen here to get the inside scoop of the real estate market in zip codes 38016 and 38018. For more information on property management or real estate investing, please be sure to visit our website: http://www.crestcore.com/

If you're looking to invest in house within the city of Memphis, then listen here as Dan and Dean go in-depth on the inner city zip codes. 38117 and 38119 are mainly residential, but that means they’re also great for flips and high-end rentals! 38122 is a wonderful neighborhood north of Summer Ave. that we, personally, find a lot of success with. Solid tenants and they pay on time, all the while rarely asking for smaller repairs; who could want any more!

You got a property you like; the numbers look good and the location matches your plans. Now, we have to know what to do next. It seems easy: you contact your Agent and have them help write up an offer for you but a lot of people ask, “What’s negotiable?” The basic answer is: a lot. The more complex answer is: maybe not as much as you think. The thing about negotiating is that seasoned investors know that the main idea is to balance price and terms in the simplest way possible. Some will debate closing costs and some will say, ‘Oh, don’t worry about rent for this month; you can keep it all!’

The idea at the end of the day is to work together to get it done in a way that feels like both sides are winning. If you’re a Buyer and drive such a hard bargain and drive their number down so far that the Seller feels you’re taking advantage of them, you will have a tough time in this market closing a deal. Likewise, if you’re Selling and you set a price and refuse to budge, you will not have a fun time selling that house. Some owners are completely okay with that, but try to be aware that if you don’t open the door for any negotiations, then you’re basically waiting for a unicorn Buyer who will just take it at your price and not care but that just isn’t an effective strategy here.

In any sort of business, there you things you do and don't when negotiating, and real estate is no different. But you also need to know ways to keep the other party invested in the deal. Listen in Dan and Dean go in depth on what to be aware of when negotiating in real estate.

Here is another video about the concept of ‘My Terms, Your Price/Your Price, My Terms’ that should show you the mindset of some investors and how one side really can’t dominate the negotiations without a huge risk of being told to buzz off by the other party. We see with some out-of-country investors that they really want to win win win in every aspect of the deal and those investors have the hardest time closing. A Seller in a hot market like Memphis (at least for the time being) just won’t put up with it for too long.

Sometimes in real estate, there a bit of a haggling process. Some want a specific price on a property while others want certain conditions meet. Both come with other, and Dan and Dean will go in depth on in this segment of The Memphis Real Estate Hour.

A question we get a lot from newer Buyers is, ‘Why is the Seller selling?’

The problem with that question is that the Agent representing the Seller can’t tell you that unless the Seller okays it. People sell for a lot of reasons, but here are some of the most common ones:

  • People are moving their portfolio up or down in criteria (buying higher or buying lower)

  • People are deciding that it’s too involved for their style of investing

  • Business dissolution

  • They only owned one or two units and had a hard time getting them steady

  • The owner isn’t prepared for cap-ex/deferred maintenance

Here is a quick show segment about why Sellers sell! From going to jail to back taxes, you never know. It’s not good to assume it’s a bad property, but that can sometimes be the case, for sure. Due diligence is key (but try to avoid spreadsheeting something to death and keep your Agent’s and your gut’s advice in mind)!

Whether you're an investor or the average home owner, sometimes life gets the better of us and forces us to make some tough decisions. Listen to Dan and Dean as they discuss some people end up selling their homes.

Oh, let us COUNT the WAYS! It’s not always about the basic ‘how’ but rather more the finesse behind it; the question behind the question. If you’re paying cash, why? Nothing against it and it’s definitely a great bargaining chip with the right Sellers, but debt leveraging is a powerful tool used by the best real estate investors in this market and all markets. Memphis is also a finance-friendly city so it never hurts to read up on different types of loans and how to get the most out of your money over several years. Real estate investing is a long game, so start going for long plays if you can! Luckily, we’ve talked about this sort of thing a time or two! Listen below to hear us go on about recourse vs. non-recourse loans and how to cope with rising interest rates.

Learn the differences and benefits of recourse and non-recourse loans from Dan and Dean in this segment of The Memphis Real Estate Hour.

What do you do when the interest rates on real estate are going through the roof? Listen in on Dan and Dean as they go in full depth on the subject.

Another HUGE topic is whether or not you should go it alone. Some people prefer to get another person involved but that also has its pros and cons like anything else. If you can find a person that you work well with and can help be your support while you support them, you’ll find that two bodies can usually do more than two peoples’ worth of work, helping make more and open up more opportunities not only immediately but also in the long run (remember: if you learn anything from these posts: REI is a long game and needs a long approach if you want to succeed). A big tip we like to give people is this: if you’re sharing equity between partners, then make sure both have a fair stake in the business. If one person is being the ‘brain’ and the other is the ‘money’ then that is very unlikely to be a successful long-term partnership. Both with skin in the game keeps everyone interested in the bottom line and in the other’s work. It’s the best form of motivation if you can find the right person to run with.

When starting a business with someone, you want to make sure that it's someone you can depend on and will help you both succeed. Listen in on Dan and Dean as they talk about what to look for when choosing a partner for you business.