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Shauna, Both Buyer and Seller in New York

I need help getting started Investing in Real Estate!

Asked by Shauna, New York Mon May 30, 2011

My main goal is to become a real estate investor but I am having trouble finding a mentor to help me get started. I have attended so many seminars from Robert Kiyosaki's way onto Robert Allen and read books but still don't feel like I haven't learned enough. So many Gurus spend so much time upselling you during the seminars that it never gets into detail enough to close deals. Not to mention that there is also a lot of bad advice from people who claim to know how to become successful in real estate but haven't done it themselves & if they have if costs &10,000 - $80,000 to be helped by their advisors, not even them personally. I have been trying to figure a way to learn how to buy and sell real estate and use creative financing. So I've considered becoming a Real Estate agent to teach me to buy and sell homes & would use my business to network & partner with investors on deals. I am willing to work hard but don't want to go in circles trying to get to my goal. Do you have any advice?

Help the community by answering this question:


You've been doing a lot of things right.

However, understand that real estate investors and Realtors have two entirely different approaches and outlooks. I started off as a real estate investor. Then, later, I became a Realtor. Part of it was for access for the MLS. But mostly it was to understand the Realtor mindset and Realtor language.

Again, they're two entirely different worlds, with two entirely different sets of expectation. Let me give you just a few example:

As an investor, you know that you might have to make 10, 20, 30 or more offers in order to get one accepted. And that's OK. But a Realtor hopes that every deal will go through. If a Realtor, working as a buyer's agent, makes 5 offers without one acceptance (or counter), that's pretty much a failure.

As an investor, you've probably been taught that if you're not embarrassed when making an offer, you're offering too much. Realtors, on the other hand, don't like to make embarrassing offers. And they worry that if they do make low offers, word will get around among other agents.

As an investor, you've been told to make sure that the contracts you sign with sellers are assignable. Most standard real estate contracts don't allow assignments and if you try to get that clause stricken, your broker is likely to tell you not to do it or that it's not being fair to the parties.

As an investor, you might be hoping to focus on lease-options and subject-to transactions. Ask many Realtors, and they'll insist that lease-options are lose-lose propositions and that subject-tos will trigger the "deadly" due-on-sale-clause.

I could go on. But you get the idea. What you've been taught as an investor isn't wrong. In fact, it's generally right. But you won't find support for a lot of it within the establishment real estate community. And that's OK so long as you understand (or are willing to learn) that.

A couple of tips for finding a mentor--if you're still looking. Ask them how many deals they've done in the past 6 months. And find out where. Though it's true that a lot of techniques will work many places, you don't want a so-called mentor who is only familiar with, say, Salt Lake City.

True story: A few years ago, I had a so-called "coach" who advised me to call ads in the classifieds placed by agents. I was to call listings for moderately-priced homes, and to ask what financing the sellers currently had in place. At the time, where I am (Northern Virginia) a moderately-priced home cost $350,000-$400,000. I called a bunch, and on my weekly coaching call, my "coach" ripped me a new one (if you understand), saying I wasn't supposed to be calling upscale properties. Where she was, moderately-priced homes were $100,000-$150,000. You could buy a mansion for $400,000. And that question about financing? Maybe agents know and reveal that information elsewhere, but I uniformly ran into a brick wall when asking local agents. Bottom line: That coach may have had success with students elsewhere, but local conditions and customs DO matter.

Get involved with your local real estate investment groups.

And, as I said, there's nothing at all wrong with (and plenty of things in favor of) becoming a real estate agent. Just understand the pros and cons of doing so.

Good luck.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon May 30, 2011
Don Tepper, Real Estate Pro in Burke, VA
Yes, I would suggest getting your real estate license. Great way to network!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jun 1, 2011
please contact me i work for a very good company contact me at 9173704312 no scam if it was i wouldnt give my number out
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jun 1, 2011
Real Estate coaches are a good thing but first should have your credit and finances reviewed....and analyzed!
Go on the CMPS (Certified Mortgage Planning Specialist) website. Find someone local that you can talk to about your objectives.
The CMPS wil guide you as to much you can afford and how to pay for the property that you and your Realtor want to consider as part pf your portfolio.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue May 31, 2011
Thank you for all your responses, KEEP THEM COMING!


Do you believe that lease-options are lose-lose propositions and that subject-tos will trigger the sale-clause? When you were an Investor did you have any success in those two areas? You mention that you had a so called "coach" what makes you refer to that individual that way? Did you learn from the person and how did you find the coach? I must admit I am timid about taking action on my own it being my first time, I want a mentor. Great advices about the book I will ask a Realtor I came in contact with. THANK YOU ALL AGAIN!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon May 30, 2011
I would suggest reading Gary Keller's, the Millionaire Real Estate Investor. I would then approach an agent who is an investor themselves and speak to them about representing you and mentoring you. Learn what you can from them, and eventually get your own license. Best of luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon May 30, 2011
You've got all the right ideas; don't be afraid to pull the trigger!
Do you think that some of the people haven't made any mestrakes?
You sound like you've got the "people" skill down and now you have to work on the "techs" and "details".
If you want to become a Realtor, do it! But that doesn't sound like what you want.
If you have a friend who's a Realtor, ask to borrow their book, "Real Estate Principles". It will train you in the details and you will at least learn the correct questions. The answers will follow.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon May 30, 2011
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