Asking the wrong Questions

12 Replies

So today is day three of my Investing journey. I have evaluated a few properties and have not seen my missing home yet. I have been a little shocked that about half of what I got is telling me I am wrong or that what I have already done is a waste of time. 

I realize that I will make mistakes and not everything I do will be the best choice. But I was surprised that I got any negativity at all, so I sat down and asked myself why. What I have come up with is that my thought process is wrong and the way I word questions is wrong. I have been asking in a way to have people solve my problems when my intentions are to learn what others have done in a similar situation and to let people know what I am doing. 

Going forward I will only put down what I am doing, and see what people have to say about that.

@Scott Bell Never stop learning, never stop researching, and don't stop connecting with like minded investors. 

This is probably a dumb question but have you read Rich Dad Poor Dad - by Robert Kiyosaki? Like a lot of real estate investors it stuck with me and flipped my feelings towards money. Like OBSOLUTETLY crushed my feelings. Like I sold my favorite motorcycle to pay off my car, get debt free, and start buying assets instead of liabilities. Recognizing the difference, creating, or finding assets was something I never did. Maybe that's what you need to kick start your investing journey. Maybe not. I'm reading The Millionaire Next Door - by Thomas J. Stanley. So far it's another good book to get you in the mindset. Cheers 

@Scott Bell at the end of the day, it can be hard to determine if members on the forums are either being nagative or just upfront. If members are telling you something won't work, I would take it with a grain of salt, but on the other hand, I would also look at it from the prospective of them potentially saving you tons of time. BiggerPockets has it's fair share of folks who are either legit investors that have massive portfolios or absolute tire kickers that hardly have any experience. By all means, keep asking questions and continue to visit the forums. 

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@Scott Bell what you are characterizing as negative is just the truth most of the time in the forums. Those of us who have been here for years and in the business for ages know the trajectory of the newbie popping into the forums. Just look at how you prefaced this post - day three of your investing journey. You don't really have anything to ask at this point because your knowledge set is still just putting building blocks together. I would read a lot more than you post right now. If you have a question, use the search. It's much easier to be a fly on the wall in the beginning than ask super open-ended questions because you will get spammed as well.

"The quality of your life is determined by the quality of the questions you ask yourself." - Tony Robbins

Nobody cares what you are doing and just because people say you are "wrong" doesn't mean anything. You hit the nail on the head with these words, "my intentions are to learn what others have done in a similar situation". 

My only advice is don't tell people what you are doing. Find people who are doing what you want to do and ask them how they did it. 


@Michael Dumler Thank you for your insight. I am always amused by people that start a reply to a post with some variation of, "I have not done that, but..." I do have to say that there is a lot of great advice here, and I am glad to get the insight of the investors that are willing to show me the ropes. 

@Jonathan Greene to be clear I do not characterize any of your comments to me as negative. I have found you to be thought-provoking and insightful. Negative is when people just say you're wrong with nothing further to add. I have spent the majority of my life as a fly on the wall learning by proxy. I am 42 y/o and all I see are people moving into the stratosphere above where I am so I try to copy their gind and the things they do. 

You and @Joe Splitrock have both commented on my last two posts and as Mr. Splitrock has mentioned "find those doing what you want to do and ask them how they did it". 

These posts are my way of getting people to come to me, so I am in the position to ask, what were the action steps you have taken to get started? 

@Scott Bell

There's also this tendency for everyone to have their own take, Scott, what works for them, and then to assume that it should work for everyone. I'm a little local handyman landlord just outside of Pittsburgh with a tight little self-managed C-class portfolio, for instance.

Here, in low-rent single family and small multifamily, the name of the game is finding that one good old building with strong fundamentals going for it out of ten other true moneypit crapshacks that are really ready for the bulldozer.

You get nowhere here unless you screen like crazy and put the people you rent to under a microscope. You need strong people skills and some empathy to work with them. These people need you to communicate with them belly-to-belly, so you had better be willing and able to do that. And you need them to STAY, because turnover will kill you with no apologies here.

My situation is entirely different from a tech guy living in a walk-in closet in Palo Alto, some dude who wants to hedge his tech stock picks with a turnkey property or two in Indianapolis. Gets on BP three times a year like clockwork to complain about how his property manager  is giving him the shaft.

It takes time to learn who's who and what they really know and whether they should really be commenting on this thread or that.

Don't over complicate this.  Learn your market and learn to market.  Everything else will fill in.

Originally posted by @Scott Bell :

So today is day three of my Investing journey. I have evaluated a few properties and have not seen my missing home yet. I have been a little shocked that about half of what I got is telling me I am wrong or that what I have already done is a waste of time. 

I realize that I will make mistakes and not everything I do will be the best choice. But I was surprised that I got any negativity at all, so I sat down and asked myself why. What I have come up with is that my thought process is wrong and the way I word questions is wrong. I have been asking in a way to have people solve my problems when my intentions are to learn what others have done in a similar situation and to let people know what I am doing. 

Going forward I will only put down what I am doing, and see what people have to say about that.


@Scott Bell

I've voted for a few of the responses on here and wish I could vote more than once.  At the recent BP conference in New Orleans, I gave a talk about how these next 10 years are going to be different than the last 10 as it relates to investing.  My main points were that successful investors who hit their targets are going to excel in the basics.  The nitty-gritty details and basically those that know how to go old-school.  They know how to communicate, they understand when and how to raise capital and I loved what Jim said about people skills.  The successful ones will understand that under it all, much of real estate is about the ability to listen and communicate.  They will be able to hear the needs of sellers, buyers, renters, contractors and communicate effectively with each.  If you're good at those two things, listening and communicating, then the last piece of advice will be the linchpin.

You will become the 5 people you surround yourself with.  An easy adage to remember from Jim Rhone.  In real estate, only surround yourself with people who have accomplished what you want to accomplish.  Only seek to build meaningful relationships with those you seek to emulate.  The good ones will always communicate with you and will always be willing to share when and how they can.  You've already had some really good, experienced and quality posters give you feedback.  Spend time figuring out exactly who you want to surround yourself with and then get to work at mastering the basics.  IMO, anyone can hit their goals if they can do those two to three things.  Best of luck!

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