How BP inspired me to form a REIA group

4 Replies

I have been a member of BP for several years now and have always enjoyed the advice and information I was able to get from other like minded investors and people who have been in the industry for a while, but I never realized how much of an impact it would make on my life. I had made some connections on the site, but had never met anyone in person. I set up a keyword alert to let me know when Fresno was being discussed and floored by how many investors we have in my area. So, about five months ago - I decided to take BP to the next level and attempt to get some BP members together in person for a more interactive experience. When I floated the idea on a BP forum - I got a few positive responses by some members who said they would like to attend.  So I went into and set up my first REAI group  - it began filling up rather quickly and we had about 24 people show up for the first meetup. Since then we have grown our membership to over 280 investors and we typically have anywhere between 11- 19 members show up for each meetup. 

The reason why this is so significant for me is because I have met more investors in the last 5 months than I have in my 15 years of investing. I have met some really sharp people and have been exposed to different ways to invest and have been able to help educate other who are just starting. Since I've started to group, I have been asked to be a guest speaker at other engagements and just yesterday I was interviewed on a local internet TV station called Central Valley Talks. It was fun and exciting to talk about the group and I realized how much I really enjoy it. My phone has been ringing more and I am getting more offers for partnership opportunities. The momentum has just really kicked into high gear and I am about to have a couple houses under contract over the next week thanks to some great partnerships I made with people who really know how to find deals. 

Many people have thanked me for putting the group together and I feel like it has really helped a lot of people who might not otherwise have the chance to meet other investors.  Other group members have already paired off and started doing deals together. 

All of this is because of Bigger Pockets. Without BP - It would have never occurred to me to do this and I am very glad that I did. Having an online forum like this inspired me to take it offline to meet in real life - now many members come not just from BP, but from Facebook, referrals, and the people I talk to on the street about it. If anyone is considering starting up a REAI group in your area or attending one - I would say to go for it! So thank you Bigger Pockets for being such an inspiration and helping to take my investment experience to the next level. 

@Jay Orlauski

That's pretty impressive and definitely shows the strength of this community. The best part about it is the fact that people are ready to extend their help to investors who are just starting out. If I could go back to the time when I started investing in real estate, I'd change a lot of things and make fewer mistakes, probably. You're offering the best help an investor would want during his/her initial years i.e., experience.

Good luck for upcoming meets!

@Dmitriy Fomichenko

thanks - in fact - that is one of the questions she asked me on the interview - "what do i see as my biggest mistake in investing" and my answer was "not connecting with other investors sooner and trying to do it on my own."  It makes a big difference when you have a community of like minded people by your side to help you learn way in the business. I appreciate the education I got by learning on my own - but think I could have done much better with someone showing me the ropes. 

Thanks Anmmar! I look forward to seeing you at the meetups again - I really appreciate all the help you have been over the last several months - really goes to show how making connections can be such a benefit - there are still a lot of deals here in the Fresno area - you just have to know where to look - I recently connected with an old friend that I use to do business with and we are taking down properties together now - I am also working what another partner who wants to build a team together - so putting together this REIA group has really helped out a lot and connected me to even more resources.

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