Hi BiggerPockets Community!
I wanted to share a success story with everyone that I hope gets people fired up about starting meetups and spreading the word about BiggerPockets.
Sometime last year around November, I got a random message from someone I'd never met before - @John Van Uytven
The only thing I knew about him: Like me, he was living in Korea and like me, he was a member of BiggerPockets.
What started out as messages back and forth eventually ended up with us grabbing coffee to talk about real estate investing. I brought along my real estate partner, @Benjamin Hauser , who also lives and works in Korea.
One thing led to another and after a couple more meetings, John said the next time we meet up, he'd post something on MeetUp to see if anyone else was interested in joining us. We were surprised when we took up almost an entire floor of a coffee shop with over 12 people showing up including fellow BP members: @Josh McNicoll , @Jacob Michaels.
Thus the Seoul Real Estate Investing Meetup was born.
Last meeting we had @Brandon Turner virtually Skype in. Here's a clip from the meeting in which he tells about his WORST REAL ESTATE EXPERIENCE EVER! (Warning: You May Not Want To Watch If You're About to Eat)
And this meetup, the head cheese himself, @Joshua Dorkin was kind enough to take time out of his busy Friday night to join us. Here's a short clip from the interview (Watch til the end and see how Josh McNicoll convinces Josh to visit Korea - and it has nothing to do with Real Estate!)
The meetup has now grown to +110 people and +30 people in attendance. It was literally standing room only by the end.
In addition to Joshua Dorkin, we also had Sandy Rodriguez discuss her real estate investments in Arizona as well as local real estate agent, Jeff Yu, who explained different ways of investing including Kwali Kum - a system where the former tenant of a building receives a money from a new tenant if the former tenant was the first to use the space in a specific commercial way.
A year ago I started on this journey into real estate. I had no idea what I was doing - I just knew that this was something I wanted to do for the future. I started like most people - by reading and reading and reading. I learned a lot but it wasn't until I joined BiggerPockets and actually started to meet and connect with others that I made real progress.
And by progress I mean forming a joint venture with Ben and fellow BP members @Kelly L. and @Maxwell Lee last year and closing on my first buy and hold rental property in Jacksonville, Florida at the end of 2014. We plan to start flipping this year.
If I could somehow buy a house in a state I've never visited with partners I knew only through the 'internet' and help organize a meetup of real estate investors in Korea and have Josh Dorkin and Brandon Turner attend our meetups, all while living and working in Korea, running a business and raising two children, then I think anyone can do it!
Every time I visit the website, I'm motivated by something new I read. I hope this success story helps motivate someone else to get started or start networking or take some action.
And if you're involved in a meetup in another country, send me a message or post to this thread! I think we share a special kinship as "international meetups" and I'd love to discuss how things are going.
Lastly, for the members of our meetup, post an introduction to yourself on this thread here. Let the BP community know who you are and what you're doing out in Korea!
And now for some photos:
Lots of new faces..
We might need a bigger room!
Sandy Rodriguez addresses the members and discusses her Arizona investments
Joshua Dorkin addresses his new peeps out in Korea!
Ben Hauser interviews local real estate agent, Jeff Yu.
Time to relax and have a drink afterwards...