I don't know if Craigslist real estate ads are a fluke or what. I'm not usually one to use Craigslist for real estate wholesaling, mainly because it's something that you have to stay on top of and do constantly.
But this morning while I was drinking my Gevalia coffee with White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Creamer in it (my favorite), I decided to see what would happen if I quit staring at the fish while they ate their cichlid pellets, and posted a few Craigslist real estate ads instead.
It was finally time to see if I could find motivated sellers on Craigslist.
How to Generate Real Estate Leads on Craigslist:
I wasn't sure which category to post the Craigslist real estate ads under, because there's only a gazillion. So I tried a few different things, each only slightly different.
My first Craigslist real estate ads to find motivated sellers were posted in "Real Estate - by Broker", which totally must've been a mistake. I try to avoid anything that's related to brokers or realtors if I'm working in my investing business. But somehow, that's what I selected. HAHA. Whatever.
The content of my ad was the same on each one. It said this:
"I'm a cash buyer in Jacksonville Florida, and I will make you an ALL CASH OFFER on your house. I can close in as little as 7 days. Give me a call at and let's set up a time when I can come out and look at the house. My name is Tracy"
My second and third Craigslist real estate ads were posted in these Categories: Real Estate Services, and Real Estate Wanted.
Test Multiple Ads on Craigslist
Below is a screenshot of all 3 of my ads that I posted. The only variation that I used was the headline. (More on that in a minute).Once these ads were posted, within an hour, I received my first email. Here's what it said:
"I own a home in Jacksonville. I am in NY state where I live. The realtor that sold the house to me, was a vicious man. My dad took ill and I couldn't move, so he put someone in my home. I been trying to sell my house for months now, trying also to get this man out and off my property. I want to sell it cash $15,000,00 firm, but the buyer has to be willing to take over the issue. Can no longer wait. I had a 3 day eviction notice posted on my property already.
It's near $300 for the court to mail him one. I own the house outright, no liens, no back taxes. I want to do a cash deal and have the deed and key. It's a simple process of changing the name of ownership. if you're interested, please email me asap. marlene"
The first thing I did was look up her name in the tax records-- her first and last name were in her email address. And sure enough, there she was. Mailing address in New York, and property in Jacksonville, FL.
I knew this was my girl, and her story was confirmed. I've been communicating back and forth with her for the last hour, and have struck a deal with her for $12,000.00 cash. I am about to send her the contract via HelloSign, and I'll have 30 days to wholesale this.
The Seller replied to the ad with all of the $ $ $ $ DOLLAR SIGNS $ $ $
How effective is Craigslist for real estate? Two valuable lessons have been learned by me today (and hopefully learned by you, as well) when it comes to Craigslist lead generation for real estate:
1. Craigslist real estate ads DO WORK to find motivated sellers. So if you're looking for a FREE way to generate motivated seller leads, then I've given you a solution right here. All you have to do is execute this simple strategy, be consistent, post every day, and wait for the sellers to contact you.
2. Even when you think outside the box, like I do, I still find that I get stuck inside of my own box sometimes. For that split second of a moment, I decided to try something different than my normal ways of generating leads, and was instantly gratified. You should do the same. Get out of your own way. The M.O.B. encourages you to always be moving forward with your goals and DON'T GIVE UP! Use those keywords, find motivated sellers, and make those deals.