I’ve attended my share of real estate success seminars. Here in Canada most gurus are coming from the States with stuff that is very questionable. Their ethics leave a lot to be desired. I haven’t been impressed by one of these guys yet. I came up with this handy dandy list which will help you determine if someone is selling you crap and calling it birthday cake.
- Lots of emphasis on dreaming about the riches that investing will bring you.
- Talk of foreclosures, assignments and schemes
- YOU CAN SUCCEED WITHOUT MONEY OR CREDIT CLAIMS
- Real estate is easy
- Free teaser session followed by high pressure sales tactics to buy extremely expensive CD’s, Books etc.
- Company originates from another country such as the USA
- Emphasis on the buying of the property, rather than the stuff that comes after
- Let your tenant pay your mortgage claims
- Expensive memberships to networking clubs
- Emphasis on developing your expert team and relying on them
Basically almost every single “guru” out there is scamming you! First of all if real estate is such a bounty of riches for them, why are they hawking $6 worth of DVD’s for $100 to $5000 or whatever else they are selling? Why aren’t they out there making money? Furthermore these seminars, networking clubs are feeding spots where the sharks go to feed on the new, naive, investor. They’re selling you what you want to believe! Real estate is easy, management is simple, no extra skills required!
It’s total BS. Real estate investors require many skills, negotiation skills, walking away from bad deals skills, persistence and that’s just to find the needle in the haystack- a cash flowing property. Then there’s the tenant management skills, renovation skills and knowledge and money management skills. It’s complex and every single area is different. Ontario and the other provinces are each different in regards to the housing laws. A legal mind doesn’t hurt in your quest to be successful.
Once you get rid of the lies and the scams, you can begin to admit what you don’t know and develop those skills. I don’t mean to be grim here but during the last 20 years or so you couldn’t lose too much money because real estate kept appreciating. You can’t count on appreciation!
I worked with tons of small landlords who make money in the real estate business. They possess the following characteristics.
Characteristics of Successful Small Landlords
- Frugality in spades
- Had money to start, many accidental landlords
- Quick to see and take advantage of opportunities
- Most do their own renovations or hire very cheap trades
- They laugh their asses off at real estate guru BS
I don’t mean to be negative but the first step to success is realistically assess the risks and benefits of any endeavor. Many people buy into an investment property and have no idea what they are getting into. Don’t let this be you. If after reading this you still feel like being a real estate investor, talk to people in the business for free. People love to talk about real estate if they are in the business. They’ll tell you the pitfalls and how to avoid getting scammed by contractors, real estate agents and GURU’s. I have a whole page devoted to people who want to ask me a question.