Let me tell you something: nobody does it without help. Even the great Achilles had a mentor, though his was a centaur. I’m no greek hero, and neither is any other real estate investor I’ve met, but like Achilles, we all had to learn from someone. Unfortunately, both centaurs and wise mentors are a little more difficult to come by these days.
I know that when I was just starting out real estate investing years ago, I was paralyzed with hesitation and uncertainty. Sure, I’d watched the shows, read the articles online, and even tried a few real estate investing classes—but I still had no idea if I knew what I was doing or not. How would any of this advice play out in the real world? Did I really have all the facts, or was I missing some critical element? Could I actually risk a portion of my IRA on a walk in the dark?
I needed someone I could trust to help me—someone to light the way, but more importantly to stop me before I made a big mistake. Even if all they did was say: “Yes, you’re doing it right.” Then, at least I would know. So, not knowing anyone in the business personally, I investigated several professional fix and flip mentorship programs. The types of house-flipping training programs have expanded over the years, and each has its pros and cons. Let’s review some of the top options so you can weigh them for yourself.
Top Fix and Flip Mentorship Programs for New Real Estate Investors
There are several fix-and-flip mentorship programs you can find online, which is the simplest place to look. Other ways to look for a mentor include attending real estate investment classes or leveraging your personal network. Regardless of how you find your mentor, they should have certain traits:
• Demonstrated success as a real estate investor. This may seem obvious, but you’d be surprised. Not all “experts” are experts—so check their history.
• Significant time in your specific market. What’s true in Cali isn’t necessarily true in Carolina. Find a mentor who knows your area.
• A legitimate interest in seeing you succeed. I know you’re a nice person, but, really, why does this stranger care about your real estate career? Seek a mentor who’s invested in your success, not a one-time fee.
Now that you know what you’re looking for, it’s time to investigate some of the most common online programs which offer fix-and-flip mentoring. These are:
Better Flips offers a 6-12 month mentorship program on their website. They’ll match you with a mentor, who’ll lead you through a seven-step process. Their program covers each step, from assessing your finances all the way to selling your rehabbed house. Your mentor will be there to provide advice throughout.
There are some caveats, though. The program isn’t free—it costs $1,000/month. Which is understandable; it gives your mentor a solid incentive. But it places a burden on your ability to actually see a return from the house you invest in, especially if it’s the only house you sell in 12 months. You’re signing up for what could be a year’s work, without a paycheck.
Also, while Better Flips provides short biographies about 4 of its coaches, it doesn’t say anywhere where they’ve lived and worked. Based simply on the odds, it’s doubtful they can give you useful local advice. When you couple that with the fee, and realize they get paid the same whether or not you make a profit, you start to wonder how much help they’ll really be.
Freedom Mentor is the personal mentoring brand of Phil Pustejovsky, who has a top-rated YouTube channel and a book on the real estate investing business. He offers a limited opportunity to receive personal instruction as his apprentice. And, his website shows links to past apprentices in New Orleans, Los Angeles, and Chicago. His bio claims that real estate investing brought him from homelessness to living in a waterfront mansion in Florida and that he’s the “greatest real estate investing mentor in North America”. Sounds like a good coach, right?
At the least, Freedom Mentor’s book is free, and so are several online courses they offer. What isn’t free is the apprentice program, should you be accepted. In exchange for advice, you agree to split profits 50/50 from your first “several” deals with this program—up to a cool half a million. Plus, you’ll be on the hook for startup and ongoing monthly fees. Is it worth paying fees, whether you have a deal in the works or not, and giving up half the money you make for the first few years you’re investing?
Rehabs2 Riches is a real estate mentoring company started by Alton Jones, based in Los Angeles, and operating nationwide. It offers a range of books and courses, and also offers a “Flip Property for Profit Mentor Program.” This 6-month program offers 1-on-1 consulting, a weekly phone call with the founder, and help with goals, leads, marketing, lenders, and finding agents. A separate JV program offers similar help for first-time investors.
This all sounds good, but there’s no mention of the price. Does this program cost a one-time or ongoing fee? Will it take a percentage of profits? Also, when the program promises 30 minutes on the phone per week, that means “no more than” 30 minutes. How many mentees are in this program, and is it truly tailored to the individual? Or, will you only receive a folder full of handouts and a pat on the back?
These programs all trade on the success of their founding real estate investing ‘gurus’ and offer to share their secrets with you. By looking closely at the fine print, you can decide for yourself if they seem truly invested in your success. But, unless you happen to live in the same area as these founders, none of them will provide truly local advice. By contrast, the mentorship program I went through does.
Get a Truly Invested Mentor—Without Gimmicks
When I became an independently owned and operated HomeVestors® franchisee, I initially received one week of comprehensive training by some of the best in the industry. After that, however, I was connected to a personal Development Agent, whose focus was to help me achieve my real estate investing goals.
My mentor had been working in my region for a decade and was able to provide me with more than just guidelines for success—she helped me learn, specifically, the nuts and bolts of professional real estate investing. She was there to help during every step, from sourcing qualified leads to closing unusual deals and even managing contractors. Generally, HomeVestors® Development Agents are active investors—not full-time teachers—and have current, daily experience in the field. Because you’re all part of the HomeVestors® team, they succeed when you do. HomeVestors® mentors are truly there for you.
Ready to start learning the ropes from some of the best fix-and-flip mentors in your area? Contact HomeVestors® today for more information!
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