So my first local REIA meeting.......mixed feelings.

13 Replies

Hello All,

I recently attended a local REIA meetup and left end of the day with mixed feelings. Maybe I am too critical on my first meeting? Seems like majority of the people are here to pass on deals. The only session I found more productive thorough the entire presentation is when they have the CPA talks about Taxes and setup biz structure. Other than that, mostly sales pitch that I think overdone. Near the end, they have 5-6 people present their deals to the entire group. Can't say too much about the host as she promised less pitching for next meeting but will just have to verify next time. I will look out for another opportunity to confirm my scrutinies.

During networking window after the main presentation, I had a chance to talk with a few people but mostly wholesalers and so called mentor touts and offers to hold your hands thru deals. They said that starter in real estate biz needs someone like them to avoid pitfalls. Most likely true but from a 24 years old guy is somewhat fishy.

What are your thoughts?

I am definitely interested in this as well, as I am going to be going to my first meeting soon. I was hoping to find some genuine people to network with and learn from. Rather than have a bunch of sales pitches and people wanting my money for mentoring.

@Mike Sheppard good luck on your first meeting. Hopefully your REIA meeting is more productive.

I know how you feel.  I've been to a couple of different groups in my area and the main part of the meeting seem pitchy.  I think you should come to these meetings with the expectation that there will always be a product or service spotlighted as way to help you grow or simplify your work as an investor, and focus on networking and creating relationships.  

There's a group in my area that is supposed to be only networking and no sales pitches.  Look in your area for these, I'm sure you're not the only one looking for more networking than selling.

You could also start your own group and create your own rules :)

@Eric T. - I personally feel that not all REIA are created equal. I have been to them before where it was 90% somebody doing a presentation and 10% networking. I just did not feel they were worth my time, so I started talking with some people here and now we have our own networking group that does not pitch products and people come from all areas of REI to network. If you did not like this REIA try another and if you try a few and still are not finding them beneficial then maybe start your own as I am sure others feel the same way

REIA meetings can definitely be pitchy and seem unproductive at times. I too have mixed feelings about the groups however, you do occasionally run into someone or something that you can take away as beneficial. The thing to remember is that no one will tell you exactly what they are doing or exactly how they are doing it. With the being said, gather as many cards as possible, listen in on others conversations and remember, you gonna have to do it your way if you want to have real success. Successful real estate is done by finding out where you excel and making it your own.

@Jose Sison

@Brie Schmidt

@Derek Gendig

Thanks guys! I am still exploring other groups locally in hope for better success. With that being said, I will give it another try hopefully for better turnout.

But man.....my mail box is nonstop with ads from this group to signup for their so called deals/marketing tool. I opted to unsubscribe but it seems to keep coming.

Eric there are some groups that are really bad (especially in my area) when it comes to selling you products and mentor programs, etc.  However I wouldn't be overly critical about this group having people discuss their deals.  What if one of those wholesale deals becomes your first rehab that you make $35k on?  But if you keep experience them trying to sell you products, programs or something else I would look for the next one.  I am a part of two really good ones where mostly it's networking, presentations, and free unbiased advice (with some solicitations sprinkled in).

Account Closed thanks!

@Eric T.  )

1. Each meeting, even the bad REIA meetings most likely has someone or some piece of information that can help you. Unless you have something more important to do at that time (like anything that is making you money right then), then these meetings are very important for you. Be smart with your money and don't buy anything at these meetings. There is no reason yet, but if you listen to presentations and take notes, you can definitely learn, which is what you are going to the meetings for anyway. So really, really, really pay attention at the meetings, take notes and do not be intimidated into not asking questions. Right now, that is your job at these meetings - ask questions and understand what you do not know. Then you have homework to go do later!

2. Find other REIA's and groups to attend. There are multiple REIA groups in your area including a Biggerpockets.com meet-up group down there that meets on a regular basis, but may not be monthly. Bottom line is use your time right now to learn. You do not need to be in a hurry just yet.  Anyone who says you have to get started right away before all the good deals are gone is selling snake-oil and trying to make money off of you.  

You have time so be patient.  Learn as much as you can from these meetings and you will quickly begin to develop your plan for getting started. That leads to my last point.

3.  Pay attention to who you surround yourself with.  You are looking to network with other investors but not at your expense.  Over time, you will quickly learn who is real and can help you and who will hurt you.  People can hurt you either by taking your money or by bringing a really poor attitude.  You want to avoid surrounding yourself with both!  Bad attitudes and people openly pitching themselves as a mentor to help you are what you want to avoid early on.  At some point, you will be able to determine (not after the first meeting) if any of these mentors are going to be right for you.

As you attend more meetings and talk to more people it will become apparent who the right people are for you to network with.  These are the people you want to invite to coffee or lunch or any meeting you can get them to attend and pick their brain.  Over time, you will definitely identify the right people and after building a relationship you will have a natural mentor and someone who will help you get going and have success.

Good luck in Houston.  We have been buying and selling in the market for the last 6 months and I can tell you that there is plenty of opportunity there.  Just be patient and learn - it will help you to be successful! 

Chris

I spent the last year in and out of my local REIA, I too have mixed feelings. I think the learning was generally solid, there is a lot of knowledge in my local, individually some of the folks were helpful, but I felt like everyone of the leaders are there first and foremost to push their individual agenda for profit. Nothing inherently wrong with that, and sometimes paying a hundred bucks or so for an expert is money well spent, but I had trouble wading through so many "guru's". I took a 4 day bus tour and felt at the end that i could have done a better job teaching most of the class than the so called "experts".

I think you have to be mature enough to be honest and selective. For the money, there probably isn't any other local place you can go for the depth of support a decent REIA can provide. 9 out of 10 title companies are designed for the typical first time home buyer and might not understand your creative finance package for example...your local REIA can help guide you to someone that does in fact get it.

I have managed to buy property found via REIA classifieds, though today it seems such publications just create too much competition.

@Eric T.  

I think I know the group you are talking about.  I went to a few of their meetings only to find they were very thinly disguised pitch fests.  A great group is Eddie Gant's get together at the Texans Grille.  It is usually the 3rd Wednesday of the month and is a lot of teaching.  He sponsors the event through Jet Lending but they are genuine.  Always a ton of people there with free food and beer.  There's nothing to join and no one offering mentoring etc. 

We also have a small group here in The Woodlands that meets on a Monday each month.  Not many of us but pure networking and brain storming, no one is there to sell anything.  

Great feedbacks! thanks @Chris Clothier @Michael Hassell @Ryan More

I am still new and digesting as much information as possible. It's always better to have an open-minded approach. Still filtering a lot of resources to pick out what's best for me and define my niche.

Information and guidance from BP community is by far the best!

I think I know which one you are talking about.  You can still get lots of great info from different clubs and just ignore the sales pitches.  If you have any questions just send me a message.

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