Successful real estate investors are expert at looking for and finding the next big deal. 

But even as they focus on the mechanics of what they do, they often overlook something important. They are trained to buy and sell properties, not to run a business. And a real estate investment company is just that – a business that requires a vision and a plan.

Now a guide has arrived to help fill in the gap of real estate investors’ education.

The new book “The E-Myth Real Estate Investor: Why Most Real Estate Investment Businesses Don’t Work and What to Do About It” ( is designed to give them a complete toolkit for starting a real estate investment business from scratch or maximizing an existing company’s performance.

The book is co-written by small-business guru Michael E. Gerber and Than Merrill, a star of TV’s “Flip This House,” along with Paul Esajian, co-founder with Merrill of, a premier real estate investment education company.

It’s just the latest in Gerber’s best-selling series of “E-Myth” books aimed at helping small businesses grow and providing entrepreneurial skills to professionals whose expertise lies elsewhere.

“A lot of real estate investors end up becoming highly efficient technicians,” Merrill says. “Their income is completely dependent on them and their efforts buying and selling properties. But what they aren’t doing is building systems within the business so they can operate more efficiently.” 

Sometimes the problem is an unwillingness to delegate responsibilities, he says. Many decisions have to be made to manage an office, from human resources issues to accounting to marketing and more.

As a real estate investment business grows, it becomes impossible for one person to handle all those responsibilities well while still concentrating on making deals. But too often, real estate investors have the mindset, “No one can do this as well as I can.”

“And maybe that’s true, at least initially,” Merrill says. “But you can train someone who eventually can do it as well, or maybe even better than you. That frees you up to concentrate on other things.”

He says it’s possible for two real estate investors to devote the same amount of time to their business, but one pulls in a six-figure income while for the other it’s just five figures.

“The difference is the systems they have put into place in their businesses and how effectively they use their time,” Merrill says. “Nobody has enough time and we are all challenged for time in every area of our lives. The most successful people are more strategic with their time.”

Merrill says “The E-Myth Real Estate Investor,” with chapters alternating between Gerber and Merrill and Esajian, is essentially a case study of how he and his partner were able to build their business using Gerber’s E-Myth philosophy.

“It’s about how we started out, how were able to grow in scale, who we hired and the systems we put them in charge of,” Merrill says. 

Sean Malarkey, a blogger and author, had this to say about the book: “‘The E-Myth Real Estate Investor’ should be required reading for every real estate entrepreneur. No one has positively impacted more real estate investors’ businesses than Than Merrill.”


About Michael E. Gerber

Michael E. Gerber ( is an entrepreneur, thought leader, speaker and best-selling author whose modern classic, “The E-Myth: Why Most Businesses Don’t Work and What to Do About It,” has sold more than 3 million copies. He is the founder of The Dreaming Room™, where entrepreneurs and others are provided the tools and facilitation to see, experience, develop and design their Dream, Vision, Purpose and Mission. His next book, “Beyond the E-Myth” is a passionate response to America’s current inspiration deficit.


About Than Merrill and Paul Esajian

Than Merrill, who was featured for three seasons on the popular TV show “Flip This House,” is the co-founder of, a premier real estate investment education company, training thousands of real estate investors nationwide through proven and systemized processes. Paul Esajian, co-founder of and CT Homes LLC with Merrill, is one of the most successful real estate investors in the nation. Over the past decade, he has sold hundreds of properties across the country.