Phil Grove

124 Replies

@Walker Seid , If it's the same guy that I'm thinking of, I went to the Houston REIA that he runs with his wife. I left early & unimpressed because it was entirely a pitch for his mentorship program. There may be value in his program, but IMO most of what he might teach you can be learned for free on the BP forums & podcasts as well as attending and networking at the other local REI meetings.

Who knows.  Nobody seemed interested in the 1 meeting that I went to.  I still see their ads so I'm sure it's working for them.

Honestly, I got started paying $1500 to a local "guru". I was naive and didn't know better, but thankfully it worked out great for me. There are so many free ways to get the same information these days. REI trainers aren't all bad. You just have to be careful and do your due diligence. Trainers that are still actively doing deals would be the better ones to work with, IMO.

I went to one of their 3 day seminar classes for $100. For someone brand new to real estate investing and wholesaling its worth it. Nothing Bigger Pockets can't teach you but it's pretty condensed and good motivation. They try to get you into their Guru program which costs a LOT but aren't that strong armed about it. 

My feeling is aligned with @Chris Bounds on this. Developing a good base of knowledge on BP and meetups which translate to action is probably a better bet than paying some guru thousands of dollars to possibly show you something worth paying for. Grove's program may provide some value but I an generally skeptical of all the "rah-rah I made $29,000 on this wholesale deal" and "just pocketed a check for $75,000 on this fix and flip" free seminars that don't provide much detail and use that as a lead in to sell you on an expensive weekend program that teaches you to become a millionaire RE investor....that's just my opinion and I could be wrong however. 

I've now been to a few of the Austin meetings.  I finally figured out I need to show up 1.5 hours after the meeting starts to avoid seeing the presentation again.  I've  kept coming back in hopes of networking.

They have a Big Dog meeting at the same time and I was surprised at how many people were in that room.  There had to be 50 people.  That represents at least $1 mil in guru fees paid this year.

I went to an Austin meetup the other day that had better content. I feel like the REIA is bringing in a fresh group of faces every month. At the meetup I noticed many people were familiar with each other and the meetup is free.

Bottom line is the meetup seemed to have doers and the REIA has dreamers.

Originally posted by @Walker Seid :

I'm listening to a webinar from Phil Grove with a houston meetup that I couldn't attend tonight. Has anyone heard of him and what do you think? I am thinking he is a GURU.

 Hey Walker,

I attended one of Phil Grove meetings a few weeks ago. I was impressed with his wife's knowledge of the real estate business. She is also a licensed realtor. But they were advertising a "Big Event" and tried to pressure sell me on spending $1000 for a front row "VIP" ticket to the big event. When I questioned the reason for the $1K fee they said they would take me in a limo to a fancy restaurant and take me to see a property they were flipping or a deal they were working on. I didn't attend the big event non did I pay the $1K VIP charge. I think these people are probably very knowledgeable but I am skeptical about giving my hard earned cash away. 

I've known Phil Grove since 1993, and I've gotten to know his wife quite well in recent years. They're good people. Phil does invest in marketing his educational products. Some of that may come across as a little slick. But he also is the real deal. He has a technology background and used to be responsible for marketing of microprocessors at Motorola to companies like Apple. His products were used in the Mac family. He's deeply analytical, and he does the homework when developing a system for use within his investment business. His knowledge is deep and he is very creative in structuring deals. He is also president of the local reia, and has expanded the Austin reia model into a few other markets such as Houston and San Antonio. Hope that helps.

This thread is a little old, but I fell for Phil's bait and switch this weekend. I figured I would share before I forget all about it as quickly as possible. For those that don't want the details - Phil is running a typical bait and switch scheme. Show up for an REI meeting (fake) and you get a pitch for a 3 day training session. Show up for the 3 day training session and you will get a pitch for a $50,000 coaching program. If you like working with dishonest people, then Phil, Shenoah, & team are likely a great fit. My experience in detail is below.

First, saying Phil is dishonest is being nice. I am a newbie and showed up at the REI meeting in Austin hoping to find a real group of investors that want to network. Go to and check out the information for yourself. You will see that some good information is going to be presented. Oh, and they are part of the "Texas Wealth Network, the largest Real Estate Investment Association in Texas." Well, it turns out that the meeting is a simple bait and switch scheme. Shenoah (Phil's wife) is the president of the Texas Wealth Network, and I can't find any other members other than Phil. They trick people like me into showing up for good content and when you get there they offer a 3 day training session instead. The real session starts a couple hours later.

It was easy enough to see what was going on after about 15 minutes.  One guy even asked about the publicized topic to be presented.  Shenoah acted like she never heard of the topic.  Phil then takes over in big fanfare explaining how great of a real estate investor he is, showing pictures of himself next to famous people, and showing his expensive possessions.  Phil offered at the meeting to explain 65 marketing techniques and 12 strategies to being a successful investor.  For $1000 there was not much to lose, so I signed up and hoped for the best.  There are other games going on as well.  For example, they say that only 15 people will be selected.  I purposely did not turn in my form until after all others had been called to test that little bit of marketing.  Of course they made a return trip to call my name and even found a way to fit me into the next session.

There is so much to say about the three day session. First, I must admit that I could not stand to stay for the final day so I left on day three around 10 or 11am. Phil spent at least 50% of the time telling useless stories, bragging, and trying to make himself seem like the king of real estate investing investing & coaching. He spent 45% of the time covering basic business concepts that you can get in a 10 year old $5 bargain book any day of the week. If you are looking for a poor attempt at time management training, then Phil is your guy. In the final 5% of the time he talked about real estate investing, but he only defined topics at a high level as opposed to teaching how to implement anything. For example; he defined marketing very well, but did not explain what works for REI. On day three I was tired of wasting time listening to Phil brag so I cornered him as asked when he was going to explain how to generate leads; for online marketing which keywords was he bidding on and what turned a click into a conversion. I asked if he would be sharing which lists he was using and what the response rate was on each; what interval he mails, etc... I asked what his mail pieces looked like and whether he would be sharing them. He laughed and said that was too deep of information for this class (paraphrased but very close to exact words). It was at that point I left.

The worst part about the meeting was watching people that I know do not have 50K to burn sign up for his Big Dingo program.  Who knows, maybe Phil & Shenoah will act differently after they get the 50K check, but if history is any indication of the what to expect then anyone who signs up should expect more bait and switch like deceit. 

I checked the local appraisal district's records and Phil Grove's name is on exactly 10 deeds in the last 3 years.  Maybe he uses an alias, but at this point I would not give him the benefit of the doubt.

I'll be showing up at the next REI meeting promptly at 6:30 to pay it forward.

@Paul Felix ,

Not to defend Phill Grove or anyone else, but it's not surprising that you would find his name so sparsely in the public records. Most savvy investors and educated investors do business through entities and not in their own name for purposes of liability and asset protection. It also prevents issues with lenders complaining "you already have too many mortgages outstanding".

@Paul Felix,

I sure hope you spend as much time working on yourself as you do complaining about someone else success.

First peace of advice would be to educate yourself about something before your try to talk bad about it. Like David mentioned you are not going to be able to search county records for an investors name as the majority of their portfolio is going to be under entity names. All of my properties and held in trusts that are owned by separate LLC's.

Second, the reason that an investor can't tell you what is working at the this very moment is because marketing pieces for real estate have a very short window of effectiveness. If he told you exactly what it is that he is using then everyone would start doing it and next week he won't be using it anymore. REI marketing is a tricky piece of the puzzle and is the part that every person must be creative and do them selves. Here is another thing just do the marketing, Everything thing works to a degree. Its up to you to convert the leads.

Third, I have attended Phil's VIP weekend. For a $1,000 you get a very fare share of education. Yes there is a big training course at the end but just like college, education isn't free. Have you ever broken down how much a college education cost you per hour in this country? It's not cheap either. Phil and Shenoah have a VERY faithful following and spend A LOT of time and A LOT of money on doing their own real estate and providing training to the next generation of investors. What is really frustrating about your post is that you seem that you are new to REI and you think that just because you spend $1,000 on a weekend course that you should be the next Donald Trump. I'm not going to lie that I am a little insulted that you think it is that easy. If it was then everyone would be doing it. It's sad to see that just because you have found someone else that has been successful in this industry that you think its OK to get on a social blog and talk down on a program just because you haven't had the "over night success".

Lastly, There are a lot of "GURU's" out there. Some good some bad. When it comes down to it (just like College) it's all about how you apply the knowledge that you have gained that make you successful. Are there ways to became successful in this industry without paying a "GURU" sure but what you don't see is the amount of opportunities to make money that you miss just because you don't have the knowledge.

I can personally attest to the success that Phil and Shenoah's Bid Dog program can bring. I signed up for their program over a year ago and in this last year I have made my money back and then some. I have also quit my corporate job and am well on my way to escaping the "rat Race" that the traditional go to college, get a job, and save money for retirement mentality. Everything that they say there program does and they do follow through with.

Best of luck with your endevour but you might not want to be to quick to talk down on people just becasue you don't think it is fari. It's not a good practice.

Hey @Chris Bounds , I am in the Houston area and just starting out. I have seen several Real Estate Investment Clubs in Houston but a lot of them seem questionable as to their authenticity online. Are there any that you can recommend personally? I'm in the Sugarland/Missouri City are so something closer is a plus. thanks! 

Disclosure: I am an assistant

First of all, why is anyone surprised that people are charging for things of value???

I guess it just depends on what your time is worth. If you have time to surf the web and look through EVERY podcast out there (they’re all selling something by the way), be my guest.

I guess I’m one of the sheep (its a lot easier to copy someone else’s success model than forge my own, but you all can be my guest!)

I met Phill and Shenoah several years ago when I sold them an Escalade. (for those of you worried that they aren’t successful investors; I’ve seen their credit app and income statements. They’re doing ok)

When they bought their second Escalade; I knew I had to learn what this guy was doing different, so I went to a 3 hour REIA and immediately saw the value of three days of education with this power couple. Guess what after three days of education, I immediately saw the value of mentorship with them.

That was a little over a year ago, since then, I left my six figure job to double my income, and do something that I actually like doing. I am so grateful for the “bait and switch”.

They offer hundreds of hours of training in their Big Dog program. You would have to be pretty dense to think that you could learn everything there is to know about real estate investing at a 3 hour REIA (if you find one, please let me know) or even in 3 days.

Warren Buffett (maybe you’ve heard of him, pretty successful guy) said that the best investment he ever made was in training for himself.

Darren Hardy, Editor and Publisher of Success Magazine does a daily email with instruction and motivation. His message TODAY was that the difference between the 12 people a year that make the cover of Success magazine, and everyone else is that they invest in coaches.

Investing in education and improving yourself is the only way you can get ahead.

Cheap and quality rarely describe the same thing. So you go ahead and do your free training and whine because someone offered you something of value for the price that it is worth. While you wade through every other sales pitch out there looking for that “free” nugget of educational gold. Im going to take the education that I paid for and add value to society and make myself some money.

Please don’t attack the family that changed my life.

Originally posted by @John Barr :
For a $1,000 you get a very fare share of education. Yes there is a big training course at the end but just like college, education isn't free. Have you ever broken down how much a college education cost you per hour in this country? 

Yay!  I love the ridiculous, "Compare the guru courses to college" argument...

Okay, I'll play along.  As you requested, let's break down how much a college education costs per hour in this country:

For 2015, the average cost of tuition for the school year was $9139 for state residents at public colleges, $22,958 for out-of-state residents at public college and $31,231 for private colleges.  I'm not sure if you're comparing the guru courses to University of Small Town or to Harvard, but let's assume we're talking somewhere between public and private tuition -- how about $20,000 to be nice.

Now, on-average in this country (US), students will take 15 credit hours per semester.  That means 15 class hours per week each semester.  A typical semester is 15 weeks, so that means the typical college student will have 15 * 15 = 225 class hours per semester.

Don't forget that a typical school year encompasses two semester, so that's 2 * 225 = 450 class hours per year.

Going back to our $20,000/year tuition costs, that's an average of $20,000 / 450 = $44 per hour for college in this country.

If you're paying $50,000 for training/mentoring, you would need to be getting over 1100 hours of face-time with you teacher for it to equate to what you'd be getting in college.  I know about a LOT of guru courses, trainings, seminars, etc., and I've never heard of a single one where they are offering over 1100 hours of in-person training.

Now, I'm sure the gurus will argue that you get access to coaches through email/phone, and lots of workbooks, and software, etc.  You get the same with a college -- office hours for professors/TAs, use of labs, use of University resources, etc.

Also, don't forget, with an accredited college, you aget pay as you go pricing and refunds.  You don't pay the full amount up-front (you generally pay in 12.5% chunks), and if you're dissatisfied with your education, you can get a refund until a certain point each semester.

Plus a college education holds some accreditation weight that can be beneficial even if you never use any of the information provided.  If you don't use the seminar information, you have nothing to show for the price you paid.

There you have it.  I'd love to see how the cost compares to your favorite guru program...

@Larry Hawkins, there are several good REI meetings in the Houston area. There is only 1 in the Sugar Land area. The Stafford/Missouri City has 1 that I know of. PM me for details. Not sure if I can post them here, particularly since I run one of them.

@John Barr , how many deals have you done in the past year since you attended Phil Grove's program? You say you quit your corporate job, but are looking to escape the rat race. What do you mean by that? You only appear to have 2 posts on BP and your profile says you've just recently bought your first rental (congrats, btw!) You'll see a lot of skepticism of gurus on BP for obvious reasons. There are a lot of gurus that sell basically the same thing (very basic info that can be found on BP for free), in the same way (attend a free meeting, get sold on a weekend training, get sold on a private mentorship program, get sold on a mastermind group, etc.). I smelled that same trap when I attended their REI meeting. Maybe they have a good product to offer, but having been to and bought into some of those guru programs before I have a good sense about the sales trap now.

Originally posted by @Brent Mott :
I met Phill and Shenoah several years ago when I sold them an Escalade. (for those of you worried that they aren’t successful investors; I’ve seen their credit app and income statements. They’re doing ok)

I know nothing of this guy's success or lack thereof, but my first thought is that I wouldn't take business advice from someone claiming to be wildly successful but who buys expensive cars on credit.

Originally posted by @John Barr :

Second, the reason that an investor can't tell you what is working at the this very moment is because marketing pieces for real estate have a very short window of effectiveness. If he told you exactly what it is that he is using then everyone would start doing it and next week he won't be using it anymore. REI marketing is a tricky piece of the puzzle and is the part that every person must be creative and do them selves. Here is another thing just do the marketing, Everything thing works to a degree. Its up to you to convert the leads..

This about the most confusing double speak I've heard in awhile on the guru threads.  First off, marketing pieces for real estate do NOT have a very short window of effectiveness.  Who told you that?  Do you know from experience that this is so?  How much marketing have you done.  If none, where did you learn what you do know? I used one piece in my arsenal with hardly any modifications for ten years.  There are big volume competitors in one of my farms that had the same postcard for 20 years.  They weren't, and aren't hurting

More interesting to me: Does Phil Groves not share marketing pieces because of fear that everyone will copy it? If that's so, why is he involved in REI education. People who fear competition and/or who believe there are limited deals available don't teach. They do deals.

Originally posted by @Brent Mott :

The smartest way to purchase a luxury car is through a lease.  Cars are not an investment, they are a way to enjoy success. were quoting Warren Buffett in your previous post...what do you think he would say about leveraging depreciating assets...

In my experience (and I have a little bit), leveraging depreciating assets is what people do when they can't afford the asset outright, when they want to appear rich or when they don't know any better...