Property investing – limitations of the mentor-student model
If you’re like us and cringe every time you hear the words property investors or property developers as if they’re at the very bottom of the ocean, then you’re off to a great start having found your way to My Properties.
We are a collection of people from all walks of life who run our own ‘property renovating businesses’. So in a way, yes, we’re property investors. Just the ones that believe that property renovating is so much more than a quick way to get rich.
There’s loads of people out there who get that investing in property can lead to more financial freedom over the long term. With hard work, a long term focus, being very strategic, understanding the fundamentals and sticking to them, along with a can-do approach and a mind that always open to learning, it can be.
So why do property investors feature so negatively in the headlines?
Ever since Rich Mastery days (and quite possibly before), there has been a succession of “mentors” praying on would-be property investors. You know the model – it is still stuck in the dinosaur age. The mentor tells you how great they are, lures you with the promise of building wealth and passive income through a seminar or webinar that is always filling up fast!
Then you’re shown and told about all the glory stories where students are paraded around which starts to feel very cult like! There’s some call to action strategy and talk of limited spots. This is all geared to make you feel as though you’re really going to miss out on something if you don’t get on board.
And just to keep you feeling as though its totally legitimate, you’re told to take your time and decide if it’s really for you… but be quick because there are only limited places available!
Needless to say we get really sick of the hype and promise of fast cars, endless days on the ocean and huge fast wealth made – all made by self professed experts parading as mentors.
These people delight in telling you how genuine they are, and they really do believe that of themselves, so I guess they are. But it’s highly likely you, like hundreds of others attending just walk away without signing up, because something just doesn’t feel right about the solution they’re providing.
Are you a PEA?
Sure, there is usually some genuine content that is served up at the event or seminar, whether its free or not. So you become PEAs (property education addicts) because you feel like education is the missing link.
Some end up paying a large sum of money because its a lifetime membership offer that is just too good to be true. And of course the promise of becoming rich is pretty compelling. Oh, and if it’s getting the ‘right deals’ you have problems with, there’s usually the promise of easy access to deals because they have the right ‘connections’.
There’s no doubt the presenters will have been honest and said property investing is hard work. The problem is that all the hype is designed to make it look easy.
Letting go of lifetime membership?
Lets just pause there a minute – have you ever wondered about the whole lifetime membership thing? Its a great way to build a network of completely inactive people who gave up after three months or attend the odd networking meeting.
The purpose it serves therefore, is to make the mentor look as though they have a huge stable of ‘students’ – most of which will still not be very active because, all the education in the world doesn’t translate into action.
Here’s another problem. These people are professing to teach you how to fish. The problem is, how do you catch a fish in the comfort of your lounge room? You really need to get your hands dirty, get to your fishing spot and get your rod in the water with the right bait on it right?
Property is a business… not fishing!
They way we see it, renovating property is a serious business, and yes you can make serious money. You cannot abdicate responsibility for decision making to a mentor and have a sustainable business though.
It follows therefore, that the mentor-student model is not the greatest solution. If you don’t build your own skills, knowledge and experience, you end up being paralysed the minute your mentor is unavailable. All too often I’ve seen students hamstrung at Christmas time (which incidentally is a great time to buy houses for renovating), because their mentor is on holiday and they need to run the numbers past him or her.
Sure, you can buy property by using analytical tools – anything can look good on paper with a bunch of assumptions. The work actually begins out on the road by doing the doing. The real point here is, putting theory into practice is where your business really begins – that’s called transformational learning.
How you could benefit from a collaborative community of property investors
Any person I’ve ever known who has lasting success with property:
- taps in to a collective intelligence
- has close relationships with people who they share ideas and concerns with and contribute to one another’s thinking and learning
- values social capital: knowledge, reciprocity, mutual reliance, a sense of connectedness and trust
- is really creative and entrepreneurial
- is highly risk averse (which drives them to know and manage their business)
It happens that property renovating is a great space for women and men who want independence, a sense of contributing to something bigger, something where they can be creative and enjoy problem solving, take pride in their work and absolutely get the value of true collaboration.
In other words – there’s so much to learn from one another. And so it makes sense to belong to something. And we reckon a peer-to-peer community has so much more to offer for so much less.