This review is featured in the October 2013 edition of Your Property Network magazine.
My colleague David Bartlett reviewed this book some time ago (scroll down to see his review below), so it had not been top of my list of books to read. He describes it as “part-autobiography, part instructional guide book” and I knew that it would be good because he had not only given it a positive review, but put it in the Top Books category. What surprised me was quite how much I enjoyed reading it.
It is a book about property trading but there is more to it than that. Early on in the book, Paul talks about why property is a “people business”. I have a similar perspective so recognised that on this point we were on the same page (if you will pardon the not very original pun). Later on there is a whole chapter on the subject, so a fair amount of the book is given over to the how’s, why’s and wherefore’s of dealing with people. While referencing a few of his own traits, what he does not mention is the importance of self-awareness. This may be because he is deliberately avoiding what he calls “I-Mode” but from reading, my guess is that Paul’s self-knowledge has played an important part in his success. This is not a tale of accidental success, but of deliberate focus, commitment and tenacity in getting what you want.
A Lesson in Persistence
Paul will be known to many YPN readers; he is a frequent contributor to the magazine and to online forums, a speaker on the circuit and also runs his own courses. It will probably not be a surprise to anyone, and I hope he will not mind my saying, that he comes across a determined chap with firm opinions; it is clear from the book that once he has a goal in sight, he will persist until he has achieved it. In fact, the book could almost be described as a lesson in persistence.
Another thing that impressed me is the professionalism with which the book is written and prepared. Some books are written with more enthusiasm than professionalism, which is not to say that the content is any less valuable, but poor structure can detract from the message. By the end I understood more about his approach: when he decides to do something, he will do it properly and not with half measures. This is considered, intelligent and well-structured. It is an easy read, which is not always an easy thing to achieve.
Who Is It For?
Hustle Your Way to Property Success is, primarily, about buying property to sell on – the Buy-to-Sell (BTS) model. However, the content is broader than that, so it will be useful to anyone involved in buying and negotiating on property, whether they deal directly with vendors or with estate agents. In fact, there are some very useful tips for dealing with agents as Paul, a former agent himself, has insider knowledge on the subject.
It is also, I believe, a book that will stand the test of time. There are a few references to the effects of the downturn of the last few years but the principles are relevant to any market conditions.
I have already mentioned the chapter on ‘The People Business’, and there are some very helpful chapters on bricks and mortar, too: ‘What Makes a Good Deal’ and ‘How to Spot Deals on the Open Market’ go into the detail of analysing deals, especially the ones that are less obvious. Paul, in line with his trait of tenacity, is adamant about having a follow-up system – arguably this can be the difference between average and great success. I also liked the last chapter: ‘Tips for Success in Property and Mistakes to Avoid’. The tips for success have little to do with the physical property or with the numbers, but with personal attributes that we can all develop, and the succinct list of mistakes is a handy reference tool for our buying processes.
All in all, I struggle to find anything to grumble about with this book. As seen from earlier reviews, there is usually a tiny something even if only a misplaced comma. The feeling that I am left with after putting the book down is that this is someone from whom I can learn a great deal, both about property and about moving forward in life. I am no longer a stranger to property investing, though my and my husband’s strategy is different to Paul’s, and thanks to my own level of self-awareness I know that I thoroughly enjoy the hunt when it comes to property deals, but have little stomach for the kill. Consequently I am not one of the best deal-makers around and usually hand that part of the process over to someone else. Reading this book has encouraged me to think again, that perhaps I could take a different approach to deal-making that is more in line with my own nature and values.
David Bartlett’s Review
Hustle Your Way To Property Success shares Paul Ribbons’ story of how he became a successful property trader, buying and selling property for profit and how you can do the same.
Paul Ribbons is not a Property Investor; he deliberately chooses not to “buy and hold” (and rent out) property. Instead he prefers to buy and sell. Quickly and frequently. This makes him a Property Trader.
Hustle Your Way To Property Success is Paul’s part-autobiography, part instructional guide book, in which you’ll learn:
- What Paul terms as “I-mode”, and why you must avoid getting stuck in it.
- How to get ConTroL (mnemonic) of any negotiating situation.
- How to use Rightmove and other online tools to unearth potentially profitable buy-to–sell deals.
- His 7-step negotiation process, used to ensure all parties are satisfied… and get you the best price.
- How to lead a vendor or an estate agent to create your desired offer price.
I’ve heard Paul speak a number of times now, and at first I remember that I wasn’t 100% behind him in terms of his business model, nor his approach. However, after reading his book (in which he explains his personal challenges with dyslexia) and hearing him speak again, I’ve grown to respect Paul and his methods and am happy to recommend his book.
Whilst Hustle Your Way to Property Success is a small volume, and thus a quick read, there are certainly a number of powerful deal-finding and negotiating techniques that earn it a worthy place in the ‘Top Books’ section of my library.
Included by Rob & Rob of The Property Hub as one of their favourites in The Property Podcast 62: Seven Property Investment Books You Should Read.