“A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” – Lao-tzu
This chapter is very important in your real estate investing journey. Without a clear understanding of the principles found in this chapter, you are at a much higher risk of failure and defeat in your real estate dealings. In fact, if you only remember one chapter in this entire guide, we sincerely hope it’s this one. Let this be your first step to a successful future in the real estate investing world.
In this chapter, we’ll cover:
- Don’t Skip Your Real Estate Education
- Real Estate Terms and Mathematics
- Mentors, Gurus, and You
- Overcoming Fear
- Analysis Paralysis
Don’t Skip Your Real Estate Investing Education
As we discussed at the end of chapter one, real estate investing is not a “get rich quick” scheme. Just as any solid home needs a strong foundation, the same is true when it comes to your real estate education — a solid foundation is key to a long-lasting business.
This guide, while not exhaustive on every aspect of real estate investing, will help develop that foundation. We put it together to be a first step in your real estate education – and as an introduction to the possibilities that come with real estate investment.
There are many different ways to get educated in real estate investing, and you don’t need to pay hundreds or thousands of dollars to learn the business. Below ,you’ll find a list of a few sources of real estate investing education; be sure to consider each before making a final decision on how you’re going to move forward — what works for one person may not work for another.
Sources of Real Estate Investing Education
- Books — As the old saying goes, “Those who lead, read.” Books are fundamental in gaining an education in real estate and perhaps the most widespread learning method for investors. Real estate books are produced each year by the thousands, and every major bookstore in the world contains a whole section on real estate investing. Chances are, if there is a way to make money from real estate, there has been a book written about it. If reading books, however, is not within your arsenal of skills, you are in luck. Today, we live in a world where nearly every new book is also made into an audiobook. (Try Audible.com for the web’s largest selection.)
- Blogs — Blogs, short for an older term called a “Web log” are a collection of short essays written about a topic. Blogs can be an amazing source of information, and there are fantastic ones for every topic you can imagine. There are many great ones written by people living in the trenches of real estate worth checking out and learning from. Be sure to check out the BiggerPockets Blog, which features dozens of expert contributors sharing their best tips and advice, as well as the BiggerPockets member blogs (TK) for great examples of real estate blogs. You can also see a list of BiggerPockets’ “Top 35 Real Estate Blogs” and discover new favorites.
- Mentors — Perhaps the most powerful way to gain a good education in any field of study is through a mentor — and the same holds true in real estate. While there are dozens of professional real estate mentors who charge for their service, there are also millions of mentors all over the world that will cost you as little as a cup of coffee – they are your local investors. People enjoy sharing what they know, and seasoned real estate investors are no different. By introducing yourself to a successful local real estate investor who you would like to become more like, you’ll have the opportunity to learn from someone in the field who knows your market and who can ultimately become a partner as you come to become successful yourself. We’ll talk more about mentors later in this chapter.
- Podcasts — One of the newest innovations in the world of real estate investor education is the Podcast. A podcast is simply a recorded audio program, similar to a radio show, that can be produced by anyone with a computer and a microphone. There have been a number of great podcasts that have emerged in the last few years. If you have a smartphone or MP3 player, you can listen to hundreds of hour long shows covering a wide variety of real estate topics whenever you want – whether in the car, jogging, or lying in bed — for free. Be sure to check out the pitch-free BiggerPockets Podcast or search iTunes for other options.