Fear and Real Estate Investing, Overcoming One to Succeed at the Other
Real Estate Investor Training & Mentoring – What Place Should Fear Have?
It seems that on any given day you can get nearly as much good news as bad news. Carefully sifting through the data and checking the comparison periods, the parameters of the comparisons and even the sources, leaves me to believe you can support any position by manipulating the data. Likely, this isn’t a big revelation to anyone. Then again, what is true and what isn’t? P.S. – I am not a conspiracy theory guy but as I get older it somehow is looking better.
In many cases the writer collects the data and writes an article to support a claim or mindset he had before he began. He’s entitled to do that. I presume that he is telling the truth or at least that the data supports his claims. For example, awhile back, I saw where foreclosures “dropped” dramatically – compared to the month before. What about the year before? They actually rose from a year before despite the previous year being the highest in history. Making “data dance” is a multi-billion dollar industry. Every corporation and government in the world is equally guilty about doing it. Some even lie, hard as it is to believe.
So what does this have to do with real estate investing? The screaming confusion that emanates from all the public sources causes many perspective and some seasoned investors to stop what they are doing – or not even get started. Some investors were saying to me that they were going to wait until certain economic or political events were over to start investing.
I was researching how a recession is determined when I was going to speak about whether we would have a “double dip”. I was amazed that the most accurate statistical bureau that forecasts recessions can only be determined 1 – 2 years after the recession was over! This means that by the time the wannabe investor is ready to invest we could be in another recession. I have said this in my seminars and in writing, but here it is again, “These past two years have been the most successful in our investing history – including the crazy markets of 2000 – 2007.”
I believe the next 2 – 3 years should be even better. I just compiled a 425 page e-book covering in detail 50 recent (some a couple of weeks old – not 2005 – 2007 era) transactions. All but two were done by our students. The result was net profits in excess of $1,060,000, and yes, that is “one million dollars”. I will have more recent deals being published but don’t have time because we are actually doing the deals almost daily. What’s happening in your investing career?
I am not the oldest guy around or the most intelligent, but I can remember more than a couple of wars and plenty of war-like interventions and tons of economic gloom and doom. All of this seems to pass. Many people are left pondering what action they could have taken. Frankly, it doesn’t matter when once it is over. Unfortunately, the fear or greed that permeates the press, and sells headlines, keeps many people paralyzed from making any decisions.
I am constantly working with mentoring students to get them started and help them get through their sticking points. I hear all the usual excuses. Things like fear of losing money, fear of getting into a property and not being able to sell, fear of not knowing enough, fear of not knowing what to say to a seller, fear of legal aspects, fear of not finding buyers or sellers, fear of not having enough money, fear of failure, and the fear of the unknown. Each and every one of these issues and fears are easily compensated for. So why don’t more investors do better?
FEAR is an emotion that causes fight or flight reactions. By itself, fear has caused the loss of many lives and uncountable amounts of money. Now I am not saying that if you are fearless and run charge into the enemy’s machine gun you will be successful. No I am saying that instead of being paralyzed with fear, ask yourself the question, “what is the worst thing that can happen to me?” If it isn’t death or severe injury, you will survive. If you choose, be stronger for it. If we would learn from each pain or every relationship after the first bad one, things would be perfect…..
All the text books and money that investors spend are wasted if they personally can’t surrender to the fact that they have some type of fear that is keeping them from being successful. It may or may not be as simple as a knot in your stomach or a bad headache. It can be a spouse or partner’s anticipated reaction to what you want to do – well before you do it. The fear of the spouse saying, “No” or, “I told you so” is so emotionally controlling that the investor feels safer not taking a chance even for the potential of glory.
I have an Application Form for the mentoring program and I ask the question, “What are you most afraid of?”. The answers range from, “Nothing” to “Losing Money”. The “afraid of nothing” guys seldom understand that some fear is good, call it caution. The “losing money” guys are in the vast majority. The fears that exist in real estate investing are actually a succession of fears that come with each level of progress. Each one can be overcome by proven methods and persistence. Persistence is the key.
Looking at the “losing money” guys, I show them 17 ways to do deals with little or no money in non-REO transactions and how to have minimal (deposit only) risk in REOs. What happens is that they start over-analyzing each and every property for fear that they will lose the deposit – even if it is as little as $500.
Realistically, they take greater risks every day driving and yet they still drive – because they “have to”. That “have to” might be a key because it is a choice to drive or be house bound. Yet, as perspective investors they aren’t so financially or emotionally uncomfortable that they “have to” succeed in real estate investing. Something comes to their rescue because they are looking for a way out. They take the out even if it means doing something they very much dislike.
So am I casting a broad net and saying that if you aren’t succeeding as a real estate investor that it is your fault? Yes and no. Yes, because you have options to solve your issues and fears without buying more and more expensive courses. The courses are more akin to a shopping spree that feels great while it is happening but causes a depression when the bill comes. And no, because these fears that haunt us all are not always easily recognized. Those fears can cause loss of focus and even emotional breakdowns.
There is only one process to overcome these fears. First, recognize them for what they are. Stop blaming them for your lack of success. Tackle the fears as they confront you immediately. Either kill them or find a way to avoid them entirely. Use your successes to reinforce your ability to be successful. I had a student who had struggled for months and months and had not done a deal. Suddenly he did two deals in two weeks. When he came in the office for a closing he had two more deals. He said, “You know, you were right, this isn’t all that hard after all!” For him, the “hard” part was persisting after deals when he was told “no” by a seller. What is it for you?
If you think you are fearless, tell me how many offers a day you are now making – one, five, ten or is it none? If it is less than one a day, what’s keeping you back? Maybe, just maybe, it is some fear that you aren’t acknowledging.
P.S. – I am an eternal optimist. This has kept me going in the face of extreme adversity which is something that we all have suffered through at some time. Because of this and my personal experiences coaching and mentoring students, I sincerely believe anyone can be a successful real estate investor.
To your limitless success,
Real Estate Mentor Program Founder