Data Guy from Portland, OR venturing into the Land Business...

Hi all -

New member from Portland, OR.

About Me:

My professional background is in BI and Data Engineering though my passion is in Real Estate. Like many of you, I was introduced to this amazing community Seth has been able to build via the 39th installment of the BP Podcast: Dirt Cheap Land Flipping.

I've been investing in RE for a little while now but I'm brand new to the land business. I'm not sure what it is about land exactly that excites me so much about land but I definitely seem to gravitate more towards it than any other strategy I've tried (rental, buy and hold, fix and flip). I think there a couple factors at play: multiple exit strategies, buying with built-in equity, and honestly, there is a lot of data in the land business! And I absolutely love data! I firmly believe that in this day and age, the success of a business will be ultimately be determined by its ability to drive business decisions and direction from data driven results.

If you need help with anything data related such as MS Access, SQL/NoSQL Databases, Excel/VBA/Macros, BI tools (Tableau/Power BI), don't hesitate to reach out!

What's Next:

I've absolutely been submerging myself with everything land related for the past few months. I actually just sent out a very small list (6) of hand-written letters to some tax delinquent property owners yesterday! I don't expect anything from these but given that the counties tax delinquencies were so limited, I figured I would hand write those myself.

I'm currently waiting on the paperwork for my LLC to go through but once that is done, I plan on targeting a much larger list of ~1500 leads in the same county with some blind offers.

I'm also finishing up the final touches to my buying website which I'm pretty excited about! I would love to share that with you all for some feedback but it seems like that tends to be something not many people do. I'm curious why that is?

Looking forward to learning from you all and contributing to this amazing community!


Welcome to the forum, and to land investing, @dvucak! Sounds like you've got the bug, all right. :-)

I think you're right that this niche lends itself well to data analysis.

I don't think there's an issue with posting your buying website here for feedback. I think it has happened from time to time on the open forum, and I know it has in private messages or mastermind call groups.

@dvucak, by the way, as you move forward in land investing and find a database approach that works for you, I'd be very interested in any details or resources/references you could share. I am moderately technical for a layman, am not a database guy, but as I posted in another thread yesterday, I am definitely at a stage where I'm starting to think about what a beyond-Excel system for tracking property and seller details might look like for me:

Welcome @dvucak!

I love Portland! I haven't been able to get down there since COVID, but I really miss having Breakfast at Mothers and Old Town Pizza!

Sounds like you've got a great start to buying and selling land with your background in RE and Data, a great foundation, I'm sure you'll do great.


I wouldn’t discount Excel entirely. Excel can actually be a very powerful tool when you uncover the features and capabilities that aren’t discussed as much. We all know how to do a VLOOKUP but very few people know that you can also do data modeling, create forms, execute DAX queries and SQL queries, build interactive dashboards and visualizations, and even automation, all within Excel.

However, you’re absolutely right, Customer Relationship Management is certainly not what it was designed for.

There’s obviously a hundred different pre-built off the shelf options that you can go with but that’s probably another few hundred dollars per month you’ll have to spend for something that you can get for free.

I would recommend starting with MS Access since you probably have it installed on your machine already. Another MS tool that’s highly underrated and pretty simple to learn. I will say though, like with Excel, Access has it’s limitations. I don’t think we should be building a full-blown CMR with activity tracking, email alerts, etc. within Access (have done it, would not recommend). However, I think what you’re after (and well beyond) is certainly realistic for a tool like MS Access.

The other option, which would be my preferred route, would be creating an application within Excel that is liked to a SQL Server (or any RDBMS) backend. You’ll store all your data in SQL Server which will manage the tables, relationships, and execute the actions (stored procedures) called by your Excel application.

The technical skill level required to do something like that though is significantly higher than what you’ll need for the MS Access option though. And you can actually achieve the same thing using MS Access. And for that reason, I stand by my initial recommendation, MS Access!

If you’re interested in learning more shoot me a message. I would be happy to talk in more detail and potentially trade my technical skills for your land investing knowledge/expertise.

@trevor-land Thank you - I appreciate that!

Funny you say that, my wife and I were just talking about how we haven't had pizza in a while and I haven't tried Old Town Pizza... maybe we'll do that! :)

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