The Magic Question That Weeds Out Shady Business Partners

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This particular method has really helped me over the years. I present it at speaking presentations, I believe I’ve written blog articles about it in the past, and today, I’m giving you a video post about this question that I ask everyone before we look at doing business together.

Why is This Question So Important?

When I moved here from Australia, I found everyone in the United States to be very transactional, meaning they want to do business immediately; they don’t want to wait. I’m here to tell you guys that if you want to succeed in real estate, it is not going to happen overnight. Real estate is a long-term play. And I like to joke around by saying it’s not a one-night stand; it’s a marriage. Every relationship that you are looking at getting into, real estate investment wise, has to be considered a marriage. The people that you are looking at working with must be willing to plant the seed now before the harvest later. It’s going to take you 5, 7, 10+ years to get you where you need to be to fully realize the potential of your hard work. It doesn’t happen overnight. So I’m begging you guys to stop working with people who are very transactional. You really have to work with people who really care about you and your best interests, who are in it for the long haul.

Related: 4 Tell-Tale Signs of a Bad Partnership (From Personal Experience)

The Question That Magically Weeds Out Bad Business Partners

Now that I’ve gotten that out of the way, here is the magic question that I ask everyone: “Are you willing to wait 6, 9, or even 12 months in building a trusting relationship with me before we do any business together?” I know what you’re thinking,”Why the hell would you even ask that question? If the deal is so good, I want to buy it right then and there.” I understand sometimes you have to pull the trigger quickly, and I have nothing against that! But still, pop the question. I really want you to weed out all the shady people out there.

There are way too many shady people out there. And what you’re going to find is you’re exchanging emails with these folks, you’re on the phone and in meetings, and then you’re going to pop the question. And then you are going to find out if there are any true hidden agendas within these people. Anyone who wants your money right now will not be willing to wait. They can’t wait; they’re greedy, and they want your money now. They’re going to try and influence you any way they know how to get to your money. These are the people that are not right for you. These are the people that you do not want to be doing business with. These aren’t the people who are going to help you get where you need to be 5, 7, or 10 years from now.

Related: 4 Lessons I’ve Learned From My Made-in-Heaven Real Estate Partnership

Let me repeat that question for you: Are you willing to wait 6, 9, or even 12 months of building a trusting relationship with me before we do any business together? Guys, it’s a powerful question. It will eliminate 99.9 percent of the shady operators out there. The only ones that are going to be left are the good people and the people who understand what delayed gratification means. And those are the people that you want to brush shoulders with, you want to associate yourself with, and you want to help get where they need to be. And they will help you get to where you need to be.

So, as you can tell, this is a topic I’m very passionate about. I love this question. It has helped save me hundreds of thousands of dollars in the past.

What tactics do you use to weed out the good from the bad?

Leave your comments below!

About Author

Engelo Rumora

Engelo Rumora, a.k.a.”the Real Estate Dingo,” quit school at the age of 14 and played professional soccer at the age of 18. From there, he began to invest in real estate. He now owns real estate all over the world and has bought, renovated, and sold over 500 properties. He runs runs Ohio Cashflow, a turnkey real estate investment company in the country (Inc 5000 2017 & 2018) and is currently in the process of launching a real estate brokerage called List’n Sell Realty. He is also known for giving houses away to people in need and his crazy videos on YouTube. His mission in life is to be remembered as someone that gave it his all and gave it all away.


  1. Curt Smith

    Good one Engelo!! We go on checking references, past deals and projects to substitute for time spent watching and interacting with the prospect. 🙂 With +/- success.

    I’ll add mine: “so tell me about your last deal of this type that you’ve done?”

    Too many partners are picked because they have cash and desire but zero experience and they are asking to be a managing partner. The real issue my question gets at is, if the partner prospect has never done XYZ its very high risk that you take them on to do XYZ.

    Digging further down under my question; if they’ve never done XYZ AND never owned and managed a complicated real estate business (any commercial business) then its not going to go well unless you have very very good luck. Or you don’t mind taking over the entire venture yourself and doing your best to cut the other guy out. Its not a pleasant situation being part owners with folks who have non-business priorities come Friday after 4pm through Monday at 9AM and real world issues happen all the time over weekends.

    The trend is your friend applies to partners in real estate too.

    • Engelo Rumora

      Thanks for your comment Curt.

      After a few sour business partnerships I’ve decided to “walk alone” to the top lol

      I have some amazing people on board along with money partners but I must call all of the shots lol

      I also take responsibility for all failure and pass on our success to the team 🙂

      Thanks again and keep the dream alive.

  2. David Sweeney

    Another helpful tip would be to use the internet to conduct a search on the person who wants to work with you. With a few clicks, we now have information available to us that might have been more difficult to get in the past. Similar to on-line dating, you can find out a lot about someone if you want to. And if you can’t find anything, ask for a resume to go along with references and do your do-diligence checks. Praemonitus praemunitus…(Forewarned is forearmed).

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