Real estate courses don’t work. So what should you do instead?
Not only do real estate courses not work, some can lure aspiring investors into wasting tens of thousands of dollars, and some may even set them up for disaster with outdated and now illegal practices. But there is another reason why they fail, and here’s how I found the best solution.
The 20 Best Books for Aspiring Real Estate Investors!
Here at BiggerPockets, we believe that self-education is one of the most critical parts of long-term success, in business and in life, of course. This list, compiled by the real estate experts at BiggerPockets, contains 20 of the best books to help you jumpstart your real estate career.
Think Twice Before Taking Courses
When it comes to real estate courses, often very little of what is taught will be applied in the field. This seems to apply to real estate investor courses, seminars, and books. There’s lots of exciting information to get you pumped up to head out there, only for you to realize you still don’t know how to do anything!
I believe these courses don’t work simply because I feel the best way to learn is by doing and taking action. Contrast the above types of “training” with an apprenticeship with a chef or your dad teaching you how to ride a bike. You’ll be shoulder to shoulder with that chef as they help you master each step. And they wouldn’t dare allow you to serve a final dish that wasn’t an amazing success (at least I hope not). While you might have fallen off your bike once or twice, chances are one of your parents first sat you on your new set of wheels and ran along next to you holding you up, or even fitted you out with some training wheels so that you couldn’t fall.
How I Learned This the Hard Way
I got my start in real estate the same way many new investors are trying to today. I attended seminars, read online advice, and a lot more. The problem is that there are so many unforeseen experiences that you will face in the field that will not be covered in the course. And in fairness — there are too many potential variables to be covered in any one book, weekend, or forum thread.
Even after starting in the industry and going through courses on buy and hold investing, wholesaling and other strategies, I still made mistakes. BIG ONES! But I learned from them, and it made it easier the next time. You can check out some of the ways I completely wrecked a few deals in my BiggerPockets post here.
Fortunately, I managed to get through it, and I haven’t been chased out of town by sellers with pitchforks and brooms. I never would have gotten to the level of success I am experiencing today unless I got out there and started taking action.
Time to Learn to Do Something
“My best successes came on the heels of failures.” — Barbara Corcoran
Real estate mogul and Shark Tank investor Barbara Corcoran says that the number one trait of entrepreneurs who end up successful is their willingness to try new things and fail.
By all means, you should invest in knowledge and practice. There will always be more to learn and new things to test in real estate. There is wisdom in reading real estate books, getting a coach or mentor, and constantly striving to learn new things. And yes, there are even great real estate advisors out there as well.
But spending $40,000 on coaching to come out on the other end with no experience probably isn’t the best ROI for most aspiring investors. There’s TONS of free information here on BiggerPockets alone, and the veterans you’ll meet here will normally tell you this is the way to go starting out.
Do get some basic knowledge. Then get out there and do it. Keep learning while you go. If that sounds scary, look out for my follow up article. It’s on one of my favorite ways to earn and learn safely with real estate partnerships and teaming up to get through those first few deals.
Investors: Do you believe in taking courses or do you think they’re a waste of time and money? Why?
Let me know with a comment!