Lost in Finding a Mentor....

13 Replies

Hey there! My name is Jake, and I am currently a Junior in college in Colorado Springs, CO. With a little bit of creative financing, more time than I can count on the BP forums, and a whole lot of luck, I just closed my first real estate deal (a duplex in w. C Springs - wooo!) Anyways - I have a question for the BP community and would really appreciate some guidance!

I actively read not only BP content but also books by Kiyosaki, Sutton, and other greats. I am also a huge podcast listener – it certainly makes running this altitude just a little bit easier! The more time I spend learning about REI, the more I love it. I feel motivated having just closed my first deal and currently figuring out the nuances of working with a property manager to secure a solid rental situation.

That being said, I have made it through the process this far without any personal guidance from a more experienced investor. I don’t want to be a one-man wolf pack along this journey, especially knowing there are so many people who are way more knowledgeable (but equally excited) than I am about real estate in the area! To be clear, I am eager to continue learning. More specifically, I have no intention of wasting the time and experience of a mentor. This leads me to my situation: I am unsure of how to go about finding someone who is willing to work with me considering I am young, inexperienced, and have only one deal under my belt. Maybe I am overthinking it, but I really dont know how to make that connection.

I am embarrassed that it has taken me this long to write a BP post, but I figured better late than never.

Thanks for your time, readers!

Hi @Jacob Volin ,

Congrats on your first deal. I promise your next deal will be much easier and quicker. The first deal is the bottleneck!

I recommend that you join real estate meetup groups in your area, and ask a lot of good questions. If you find an experienced investor who is willing to gladly answer your questions and help you, there you go!

When I started, I attended a meetup group and I was amazed by the knowledge the presenter had. I liked his personality and his willingness to share knowledge. After a while, I sent him an email and just offered my help! I asked him if there is anything I can do to help him in exchange for teaching me ONE THING I don't know about real estate! It was Friday night, he emailed back late at night and asked me to come to his office (on the weekend).

On Saturday I showed up to his office at 9:30 AM, he was already working on some marketing campaign. He took the time to explain how he do business. I invited him to lunch and we spend good time talking about real estate, mentors, books, and many other productive things.

I gained so much knowledge and actually built a great relationship with him to this day.


I think you’re over thinking it. The best mentors are ones you don’t intentionally find. Did your first deal go well? If so, simply repeat it. Depending on what you’re doing real estate isn’t that challenging conceptually speaking. If you just want to buy some rentals that’s different than say syndicating a 200 unit complex. You don’t need a mentor to do rentals but maybe find one if you want to do syndication or something more advanced

Attend reias and you’ll find someone

@Jacob Volin -congrats on your duplex, and a junior in college, wish I would have started then. I'm confused about your post. Are you Lost in Finding a Mentor or Lost in Asking for one?

And don't be afraid to have more than one. Does that make sense?

@Jacob Volin In my experience, one of the most important things to someone who is successful is their time.  They have likely dedicated a lot of time and worked hard to get where they have gotten to and they likely work hard still or could spend their time working hard still and generate more money and more success.  So recognizing that for many mentors, their time is precious, and by offering something to them that can't be bought simply with money will likely get someone more interest in mentoring you.  

For example, I would say I have about 5 mentors.  People who are much more knowledgeable, successful, and skilled in real estate than I am that I meet with at least once a year to let them know what I am doing and to seek advice from them.  I offer to buy them lunch (which they could buy on their own) but then I offer sincere friendship, humor, and appreciation.  They give me some of their knowledge and direction and then I go to put that into practice.  They also give me nuggets of wisdom that help out a lot.  So offering something that they can't just buy on their own (like an enjoyable experience with an appreciative learner) will more likely attract a mentor in my opinion.

And where as I agree with what @Caleb Heimsoth said about not needing a mentor to do rentals, I think that having a mentor, even for rentals, can sure be helpful to learn some of the little tricks of the trade that can save tons of frustration around things that you likely never would have even thought of because of the lack of personal experience. 

Everyone makes this mentor thing bigger than it is. A mentor is someone willing to answer your questions or provide feedback. All you have to do is find someone more experienced that is willing to help you and or answer your questions on a regular basis. BP as a community is a mentor.

Originally posted by @Sam Alomari :

I recommend that you join real estate meetup groups in your area, and ask a lot of good questions. If you find an experienced investor who is willing to gladly answer your questions and help you, there you go!

When I started, I attended a meetup group and I was amazed by the knowledge the presenter had. I liked his personality and his willingness to share knowledge. After a while, I sent him an email and just offered my help! I asked him if there is anything I can do to help him in exchange for teaching me ONE THING I don't know about real estate! It was Friday night, he emailed back late at night and asked me to come to his office (on the weekend).

On Saturday I showed up to his office at 9:30 AM, he was already working on some marketing campaign. He took the time to explain how he do business. I invited him to lunch and we spend good time talking about real estate, mentors, books, and many other productive things.

I gained so much knowledge and actually built a great relationship with him to this day.


 An excellent suggestion and an awesome story. Thanks for your time, Sam!

Originally posted by @Jay Helms :

@Jacob Volin -congrats on your duplex, and a junior in college, wish I would have started then. I'm confused about your post. Are you Lost in Finding a Mentor or Lost in Asking for one?

And don't be afraid to have more than one. Does that make sense?

 Jay - To clarify, I am lost in finding a mentor! But, the responses to the forum have been very helpful thus far.

Originally posted by @Shiloh Lundahl :

@Jacob Volin In my experience, one of the most important things to someone who is successful is their time.  They have likely dedicated a lot of time and worked hard to get where they have gotten to and they likely work hard still or could spend their time working hard still and generate more money and more success.  So recognizing that for many mentors, their time is precious, and by offering something to them that can't be bought simply with money will likely get someone more interest in mentoring you.  

And where as I agree with what @Caleb Heimsoth said about not needing a mentor to do rentals, I think that having a mentor, even for rentals, can sure be helpful to learn some of the little tricks of the trade that can save tons of frustration around things that you likely never would have even thought of because of the lack of personal experience. 

Shiloh - this is excellent advice. I think that a mentor (or a friend with the abilities to help) can help bring peace of mind in new, stressful situations that I am finding myself in as a young investor. I am also a firm believer in appreciating people to the best of my ability - I just don't know what exactly I have to offer to another investor if not conversation over a beer.

Originally posted by @Steve Milford :

Everyone makes this mentor thing bigger than it is. A mentor is someone willing to answer your questions or provide feedback. All you have to do is find someone more experienced that is willing to help you and or answer your questions on a regular basis. BP as a community is a mentor.

 Steve - Thanks for your input! While I agree that BP as a community can certainly serve as a mentor, the issue is that it doesn't factor in the personal relationship that is created when mentorship occurs. Knowing the nuanced details of the investor, etc. It can be hard to get that kind of depth in a forum post. Thoughts?

most real estate investors struggle with 1 of 3 things.  Not having enough of one or more of the following things:  money, deals or time.  Find which of those you have the most of and then go find an investor who is lacking what you have.  Offer to help, if you click you have a mentor.  Now if you have no time money or deals it could be harder.  

Originally posted by @Jacob Volin :
Originally posted by @Jay Helms:

@Jacob Volin -congrats on your duplex, and a junior in college, wish I would have started then. I'm confused about your post. Are you Lost in Finding a Mentor or Lost in Asking for one?

And don't be afraid to have more than one. Does that make sense?

 Jay - To clarify, I am lost in finding a mentor! But, the responses to the forum have been very helpful thus far.

Understood. So how many people have you asked and why did they say no?

@Jacob Volin I started off at 23 buying a duplex. I didn't get serious until I was thirty. Today, at 39 I own over 1750 apartment units and I'm just getting started!

I have had dozens of mentors along the way and most of them didn't know it! Further, many of them (maybe half) have never met me! ;)

@Jacob Volin

My real estate mentor tells me basically the same things all the time. I joke with him that he keeps repeating it, but I make it complicated. He responds that it took him 30 years to learn this stuff, and I am learning at a much faster rate. How did I find him? I was selling my last house as a FSBO, and Realtors came out of the woodwork promising me the moon for a contract signature. I became disgusted really fast. I was interested in the process, but not enough to pay 6% commission. My mentor was the only Realtor that said yes to the following question AND who was willing to explain his business model before I met with him. At no point has he ever "helped" me get a deal aside from providing me feedback on my ideas or offered me tips to try. He basically gives me suggestions for business, tells me to get off my arse and get to work. My initial statement and question was, "I am curious about this business and if I became licensed to sell real estate would you mentor me?" In hindsight, it amazes me how many people told me no. Their loss. My mentor didn't offer himself as a mentor, I had to ask him. Now when other brokerages recruit me they all tell me the same thing, how open and awesome their principal is. But they can't beat mine, whom answers the phone or gets back to me any day of the week, and after hours. I have learned tons in the last 3 years and look forward to learning every day.

Free eBook from BiggerPockets!

Ultimate Beginner's Guide Book Cover

Join BiggerPockets and get The Ultimate Beginner's Guide to Real Estate Investing for FREE - read by more than 100,000 people - AND get exclusive real estate investing tips, tricks and techniques delivered straight to your inbox twice weekly!

  • Actionable advice for getting started,
  • Discover the 10 Most Lucrative Real Estate Niches,
  • Learn how to get started with or without money,
  • Explore Real-Life Strategies for Building Wealth,
  • And a LOT more.

Lock We hate spam just as much as you

Join the Largest Real Estate Investing Community

Basic membership is free, forever.

By signing up, you indicate that you agree to the BiggerPockets Terms & Conditions.