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...
Great write up.
Look forward to catching up again.
That's really cool! So neat that technology can make all of this possible across the thousands of miles.
Congrats @Daniel Ryu - this is awesome!
Thanks for the post, @Daniel Ryu and for putting together this group . . . it was a pleasure chatting with you guys and I love what you're doing!
I hope folks around the globe continue to put together groups like these to connect investors.
If we can help -- let us know.
Meanwhile . . . much appreciated and thanks for the share.
Here is a quick panoramic I took so people could get a sense of the room. There were another 12-15 people to the other side of me too. Sorry @Joshua Dorkin for making you look like Quasimoto.
How awesome man! It's great to see you doing big things @Daniel Ryu . Keep it up Sir!
@Paul Wurster - Man you sure know how to make a guy look ugly ;)
sweet fellas and ladies! I am in jacksonville, so this key word alert allowed me to view what you all are doing. I enjoyed reading about the momentum you have created. Keep up the great work: it's motivational and inspirational!
@Mehran K. - I love how BiggerPockets allows people anywhere to connect. Thanks for commenting. A lot of our members are just getting started and having to do that while being in Korea can make it more of a challenge.
But we'll keep supporting each other and helping move our group members forward. I hope everyone single person in our group is able to post in this forum before the end of 2015!
Thanks for the shout out! Looking forward to the future of our collaborations!
Gents!! I'm in Korea also. I'm down in Geoje by Busan. I fly back to the States every month. (Month here then a month in Houston, Tx) let's connect and do some deals!
Great synopsis! A much needed shout out to @Daniel Ryu , @John Van Uytven , @Benjamin Hauser for taking the time to start such an amazing face-to-face group in South Korea.
It is amazing to see how much attention to detail, and effort, these guys put into the group. Let's see: the group has a Meetup page, a FB page and a Youtube channel. Additionally, monthly meetings are held in a professional setting, with free refreshments, for a minimal fee. Furthermore, the speakers provide great info and it feels so amazing to be part of such a phenomenal community.
Presently, my job affords me the opportunity to reside is South Korea. Luckily, there are many Americans here and it almost feels like home. Collectively, I've spent over three years in the country - all while being a buy-and-hold long distance investor.
While residing overseas has made investing more difficult, it can still be done with the right strategy. Due diligence is definitely necessary, but technology has made it a lot easier to invest. Hence, I am now looking towards turn-key acquisitions.
Thanks for the kind words! But it's the investors like yourself that really bring the value ^^
Hopefully all the resources lead to more success stories among our members. Looking forward to the next one!
@Daniel Ryu This is awesome. I've joined the meetups page to keep in the know. I'm going to be acquiring my Teaching English as a Foreign Language Certificate at the end of May. I'll then be spending a lot of time for the remainder of the year looking for jobs over in South Korea and other countries that I'm interested in moving to. If I end up coming to South Korea, I definitely want to connect with all of you guys!
@John Van Uytven and @Benjamin Hauser
Wow~ this is amazing!
I didnt realize there are so many BP members in Korea~ i definately want to be part of it when you guys do this next time ;0
Sounds like you have a lot going on. Looking forward to meeting you next time you're in Korea. I just updated our MeetUp - March 21. Hope to see you then.
That would be great! We send out more detailed email recaps to our members, so PM me your email address if you want to be included on the email list - or reach out through the MeetUp page. Hope to see you out here in the future.
We were surprised too, Natalie ^^. But we've been working hard to build up the community and help everyone succeed in real estate investing. Join the group and you'll get updated on the latest happenings. I hope to see you at a meetup in the future!
- Yes, I am so excited for the years ahead. I'm only 24 so starting out this young I think will definitely help me in the long run. I wanted to ask if this South Korean meet-up group only focuses on purchasing and master-minding for properties here in the states, or if you guys speak about and purchase real estate in Korea and other "international" countries (by international I mean any other country outside of the U.S.).
That's awesome Dominic! I wish I got started younger ^^ but it's never too late.
You'll definitely benefit from all the experiences you read about on BP.
At our meetup, a lot of our members have investments in the US (including me ^^). But we also have members with Korea investments. And at the last meetup, we had a new member with investments in Ireland. Another member has holdings in Hong Kong and another member who flew in for a meeting, has holdings in Taiwan and Burma.
Our usual set up is:
* A) One Korea focused investor (or local area expert)
* B) One investor from the group
* C) One virtual investor
B & C can be whoever and I, for one, would love to learn more about investing in Thailand, and other parts of Asia.
So the long answer to your question ^^ - lots of US focus and Korea. But we're open to hear about global strategies. Overall, there is soooo much momentum that is gained from being around active investors and I think that's the main thing members get!
@Daniel Ryu Definitely! I'm very glad that I've found this place now rather than later. I'm interested in holding property all over the world but first I have to start with my local area, get that first deal done and out of the way and then continue to learn then do, learn some more, do some more.
I look forward to the possibility of meeting you in person and becoming a part in your Korean MeetUp group!
nice write up! awesome success story!
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