11 Reasons Your Network Equals Your Net Worth (& 4 Ways to Expand Yours!)

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As a budding investor, who would you prefer receiving all your real estate advice from: someone who has made a lot of money by investing in real estate or someone who can quote every textbook there is but hasn’t got anything to show for it? You’ll most probably say you’ll want the first one. Exactly! And why shouldn’t you? After all, money is rarely lost in the real estate business because you don’t know the theory behind it all. It’s usually lost because you don’t have the experience — experience to see a great deal when it presents itself or when there’s an issue with your next potential purchase. And that happens when you’re not surrounded with the right kind of people. To succeed as a real estate investor, you must be in the company of smarter investors. Get tips, knowledge, guidance, and wise words from these people and learn all you can about investing in real estate.

A real estate business flourishes on a sound and a smart network of people who know a great deal about this sector. It’s often said about real estate business that “Your Network = Your Net Worth.” And we’re not just talking about the team you’re working with, although they need to be good as well. Networking with your peers and with veterans not only gives you an opportunity to discuss the latest listings, but also gives you an opportunity to understand a market beyond its statistics and numbers.

How to Invest in Real Estate While Working a Full-Time Job

Many investors think that they need to quit their job to get started in real estate. Not true! Many investors successfully build large portfolios over the years while enjoying the stability of their full-time job. If that’s something you are interested in, then this investor’s story of how he built a real estate business while keeping his 9-5 might be helpful.

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The Benefits of Learning From Successful Investors

Indeed, having a mentor in the real estate business helps a newbie learn a lot about the market, get valuable advice and see a different perspective on the business. Finding the right kind of mentors will help you shape your investment career for success.

A survey conducted by the Business Networking International group of 12,000 business professionals found that professionals who said that “networking played a role” in their success spent an average of 6.3 hours networking per week. These professionals also said that they received around 50 percent of their business from referrals, which in turn were derived from their network. So, the more you network, the more opportunities you have to achieve success in your business. The biggest indicator to my success thus far has been consistently networking with much smarter and more successful individuals than myself.

So aside from getting those additional leads, there are many benefits of having a mentor or a guide in the sector. Here they are.

Getting Advice

The biggest benefit of having a mentor is having someone you can ask a lot of questions and get their advice. As a new investor, you are bound to get truckloads of uncalled-for pieces of advice from your next door neighbor or your family and friends. While a few of these may be pure gold, it’s not likely, and the large majority of them won’t help you even a little bit. Not so with mentors. They know the game. A mentor will help you enter the real estate market and tell you what the crucial aspects of the business are that you need to take care of.

Minimizing Costly Mistakes

The real estate market can be unstable. If you’re not watching out, you might end up losing a huge sum of money. A mentor will guide you in your investment decisions saving you from making mistakes you’ll regret later. A great quote to live by is: “A wise man learns from his mistakes, but a wiser man learns from someone else’s.”

Related: The Top 10 Mistakes Real Estate Investors Make at Networking Events

Gaining Perspective

Often, young professionals have a tendency to try to apply their theoretical knowledge gained during their education into the real world. As a new investor, you’ll probably take your investing on the exact same way. Mentors help you look at problems from perspectives that you wouldn’t have thought of on your own or learned through formal education.

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Access to a Large Network

Mentors are successful investors, and they’ve been where you are. They’re likely to have a rich network of industry professionals, such as investors, agents, attorneys and contractors, among others. It can take a newcomer several years to establish a large network of professionals, and even then, the quality can lack. Your mentor can put you in touch with their network, giving you quite a head start. The more networking you do, the more successful a foundation you build for your business.

A key individual who has helped my growth as an entrepreneur and the growth of my company has been conducting around 1,000 renovations and 250 retail flips per year. Imagine the wealth of knowledge and experience that has been gained over the years by doing those types of numbers.

Increased Investment Opportunities

It’s quite likely that that rich network you’ve been building with the help of your mentor will turn into plenty of serious investment opportunities.

Good Referrals for Building a Team

So, you’re looking to build your team. As a real estate investor, you will be required to have a team of professionals, which might include contractors, attorneys, accountants, and agents. You need good referrals to select and hire trustworthy and disciplined people in your team. An industry network helps you get good referrals for building up your team.

A Source of Inspiration

As I said earlier, the real estate business can be unpredictable. A hyped property area today may become a total cold zone a few months down the line. Because of this volatile nature of the market, investors who are just starting out are likely to lose their motivation easily. But having someone whose career is in great shape helps them to find that motivation. New investors can really tap into that and get a constant feed of inspiration from the successful careers of people who have made it big in the real investment business. Having role models like that in your network or as a mentor will make sure you don’t just give up. They’ve been through this; they’ll let you know it’s normal and it’s time to buckle up.

“People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing. That’s why we recommend it daily.” — Zig Ziglar

How to Network & Find Your Mentor

A network provides that much needed support and creates opportunities for investors. A network of real estate investors can include a mentor, colleagues, other industry professionals, business partners and even clients. It allows investors to excel in their careers through their shared knowledge, experience and opportunities. You can also build a network of like-minded peers and industry professionals by following these tips.

Attend Networking Events

Networking events like local meet up groups, real estate club meetings, and Rotary club meetings are great places to collect cards and contacts of people you want to connect with. This is where people get busy exchanging their views and discussing all kinds of things related to your business. It can be quite difficult to just barge in and ask people to connect with you; everyone’s busy anyway. You should just try to collect their contact information. Research the contacts you got and see if there’s someone you’d really like to sit down with and pick their brains.

Later, when you are more at ease, take your time to call these people and invite them for coffee or lunch. This way you get a better chance to connect with the other person on a one-to-one basis. This is how I ended up establishing numerous lasting relationships over the years, along with dropping thousands of dollars on coffees and lunches. In my opinion the money has been well spent in this way rather than paying for “guru” mastermind sessions or seminars.

Focus on Developing Relationships

When you meet someone you want to connect with, don’t be in a hurry to talk business. Instead, focus on developing trust and building a relationship. Once they trust you, they’ll respond to your questions more favorably. Focus more on getting to know the person and understanding them.

networking

Listen Up

When you’re networking, listen to filter out the more valuable contacts. It’s a good way to let the other person know that you’re interested and attentive, but it allows you to size them up. Listening is a great way to develop trust with a new person. When you meet someone at a networking event or over a private meeting, use your body language to show that you’re engaged and listening to them. Make them talk. If they’re interesting enough, make plans to meet up later on. Make sure that when you do, you take notes and show genuine interest.

Related: The Beginner’s Guide to Highly Effective Real Estate Networking

Take Advantage of Social Networks & Online Communities

Meet up groups and networking events aren’t the only ways to extend your network. The internet is a great tool to locate successful real estate professionals from your location and connect with them. With more than one billion people in the world on Facebook and over 400 million people on Twitter, you’ll without a doubt find a community of like-minded professionals that suits you. Engage people on these platforms by asking questions and by sharing your knowledge with them.

On LinkedIn, for example, you can research about a person and their real estate experience; you can send a connection request, you can join others in their network, and you can even get notifications about what they’re doing professionally.

You can also extend your network online by creating and developing a blog and getting noticed. Focus on delivering high value content. Invite people in your network to like and comment on your blogs. This way, as your blog posts reach more and more users, your network will also grow by leaps and bounds.

Conclusion

Real estate is a business where success depends a lot on experiential learning rather than on theoretical knowledge. If you’re a new investor or a one-time investor, it’s very difficult to gain that experience on your own. But by networking with people who have already been in the business of real estate for ages and have made fortunes, you’ll learn a great deal about investing. Your success depends on how dense your network is. So, work on expanding that network of experienced people and clients. They’ll add up to your “net worth” in the long run.

How do YOU build your valuable network?

Leave all of your best tips in the comments section below!

About Author

Engelo Rumora

Engelo Rumora “The Real Estate Dingo" is a successful property investor, motivational speaker and serial entrepreneur that quit school at the age of 14 and played professional soccer at 18. He is also a soon to be published author along with becoming a TV personality in his very own real estate house flipping show. To find out more go to engelorumora.com . Engelo Rumora has been involved in over 400 real estate deals and founded five businesses in Ohio. The most successful is Ohio Cashflow, a company that specializes in providing turnkey properties in several Ohio markets. The newest venture is List’n Sell Realty, a real estate brokerage based in Toledo, Ohio and soon to be known as the #1 discount broker in the country.

19 Comments

  1. #BenBenita, @BenBenita, “FACT – You are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with….show me who you hang around with and I will tell you EXACTLY where you will be in 3 years!”

  2. Paul Ferraro

    Great info even to a guy like me who’s been doing this for a long time.
    Right now I am trying to get off the ground with my experience after bankruptcy.
    Bankruptcy is a bad word not only in real estate but in a lot of other things.
    I would like to get back at doing what I love any words how I can do it to make a quick come back?

    Respectfully,
    Paul F.

  3. Jerry W.

    Engelo,
    Very good article. This is an area I struggle with. There are very few real estate investors in my area. The few successful ones I know about no longer live here and are semi retired. I use 2 real estate companies locally for listed properties and often have to explain certain things to them. Small towns have good points and bad points. Thanks again for the article.

    • Engelo Rumora

      Thanks Jerry and I’m in a similar boat here in Toledo.

      Myself and our company aren’t too respected as we are young, hip and doing great things.

      Many people are envious and jealous. Doesn’t really bother us and we look up to many other folks that aren’t based locally.

      You will find some amazing entrepreneurs nationwide. I have a few folks that I look up to and seek advice from that are based in NYC for example.

      Thanks again and have a great day.

    • Engelo Rumora

      My pleasure Joshua,

      Yep, make it happen.

      I have had 10+ out of state trips over the last 6 weeks to all kinds of events. Met some amazing people and super excited for what the future will bring.

      Get out there and make it happen mate.

  4. Andrew Syrios

    The tough part about networking is the benefits payoff slowly. You meet someone and then a year later they get you a great deal or something like that. If you’re running from one fire to the next, you just have no time for long term thinking. It’s like exercise, you need to do it, but the results are cumulative (and usually take a little time).

    • Engelo Rumora

      Thanks Andrew,

      I like the quote “Plant the seed today and reap the harvest later”

      I always try and reach out to as many people as possible on any given day.

      Eventually something might come from it or it won’t.

      At the end of the day if we never give it a GO, we will never KNOW hehe

      Thanks mate

  5. karen rittenhouse

    A very untapped but great place to network is local Landlord Association meetings. Not every area has an organized group so, if there’s not one in your area, start one on MeetUp.com

    The great thing about these gatherings is that all the people there already do the business and own properties. In our area, speakers include Chief of Police and City Council members. Our meetings are fabulous for learning the investment business, buying and selling properties, and learning about changes in the community that are vital to know for our business.

    Thanks for the article.

  6. I think it’s a great idea to start getting to know people you could be working with as soon as possible. There are a lot of moving parts in business so the better everything works together, the more likely you are to have success.

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