I attended the Toronto Real Estate Wealth Expo this past weekend, and thought it would make for some good material to share on my blog. It's been awhile now since I've shared some nuggets of wisdom with the readers.
My biggest lesson: Expos are a waste of money. Sorry to disappoint you, but I might as well save you some money. All of the speakers had formulas for their speeches that went like this: a story about themselves, a few stories about how successful their students had become, finishing with a sales pitch on their workshops that were on sale "for a limited time only". After the speaker offered their workshop at a "discount price of $ _____ (still far too much money, but about 1/3 of the so called "original price"), what I assume could only be an actor, gets up and hands over his credit card, and is dubbed a "smart guy" by the speaker. The sheep would then follow. This pathetic spectacle went on hourly for the entire weekend, sprinkled with cheap stunts to captivate the audience, like celebrity appearances by Pitbull and Tony Robbins, and draws to win lavish prizes.
There was one great piece of advice from the speakers, but it wasn't anything new to me or the group I had gone to the expo with.
It was to get started!
It all has to start to somewhere. If you think real estate investment is for you, just pull the trigger and start investing. You can start small (or even with nothing) by finding someone to do a joint venture with, if money is scarce. There are some investment deals that happen where one person/party is responsible for putting up the capital, and the other is in charge of overseeing the process involved in generating value from the property. Examples of joint ventures like this are:
-Finding something under-priced and reselling for a profit (one person is in charge of finding the property and overseeing the purchase and sale, the other puts up the capital)
-Buying an under-performing plaza and lease it out so it can be sold for a profit (one person puts up the capital, the other is in charge of managing the plaza, making improvements, advertising and filling the space with quality, long-term tenants)
-A house flip (one party puts up the capital to buy, the other renovates, or oversees the renovation process)
Those are some simple examples, and every deal will look different depending on who you borrow from, and what you are able to offer to your joint-venture partner. If you are the partner who didn't put up the majority capital, be prepared to work hard and prove yourself to be worth the investment of someone else's money. If you are the partner who puts up the capital, be sure it's with someone you can trust and who works hard.
At the end of the day, the sooner you start investing, the sooner you can start making money from your investments.