Conducting Workshops On Real Estate Investing

By: Don Glasgow

Are you a real estate agent interested in making an additional $24,000 or more over the next 12 months? How about making an additional $48,000 in year two?

You can, and conducting workshops on real estate investing is a smart way to do it. In fact, it might be just the ticket.

I conducted my first real estate investing workshops about a year ago. I am now working with three investors I met at those workshops. So far, I have earned $14,700 from buyer-side commissions from these three investors. In addition, I've received four listings from these investors: One lot listed for $155,000 (sold), one townhome listed for $180,000, and two single-family homes listed for $307,000 and $315,000.

Even more exciting is that each of these three investors is likely to use my services to buy or sell at least two properties per year, year after year.

For every four workshops I conduct, I meet at least one new investor who wants to work with me. One year of workshops has led me to three investors, each of whom has completed two transactions with me. Conservatively, these six transactions could be worth $24,000 in commissions by the time the dust settles.

It gets even better. During the next year of workshops, I expect to develop relationships with at least three more investors, plus I will still be working with my previous investors. During this second year, I should make about $48,000 in commissions from these investors. (These are conservative numbers; I will probably make much more.)

I began these "free to the public" workshops after a mortgage broker asked me to participate in his real estate investing workshops. I had been investing in real estate off and on since 1992 and my presence and input was a plus for him. Unfortunately, the mortgage broker didn't make enough money from the workshops and he stopped them after about six months.

While I worked with him, I learned how to make the presentations and how to advertise the workshops to ensure attendance. When the mortgage broker quit, I decided to conduct the workshops myself. I asked another agent and a different mortgage broker to help me, and we have been offering these workshops ever since.

We host investing workshops once a month, on a Saturday morning at 10, in our office. We provide refreshments of doughnuts, coffee, juice, and water. The workshops run for about an hour, and we usually have at least 15 people attend.

Using Microsoft Power Point, we present about 35 slides of real estate-related information. Our 35-slide presentation includes information on our local real estate market, what we expect to happen in real estate over the next 10 years, how to finance investment properties, the pros and cons of flipping fixer-uppers, what to look for in buy-and-hold real estate investing, and how to find good renters.

We follow the presentation with a question-and-answer period, during which we invite the audience to make an appointment with us to talk about their investing needs. We also offer them weekly e-mails of local foreclosed and fixer-upper properties if they provide us their e-mail and mailing addresses.

After the workshop, we usually talk to members of the audience, one on one, if they still have questions or just want to chat.

To get the word out on the workshops, we run a large display ad in the local "Thrifty Nickel" newspaper. The ad is a big old wordy thing, but it pulls in workshop participants like crazy, and it costs us only $77 per week to run. Our total cost to present one workshop is about $338: $308 for a one month run of the ad and $30 the refreshments. We don't pay anything for using our office space.

If you don't have any real estate investing experience, I feel sure an agent in your office does. Team up with that agent and a mortgage broker, work up a presentation, advertise your workshops, and you are in business. But don't expect instant gratification. Give the workshops enough time to pay off; at least one year.

This pattern of meeting new investors can grow year after year. I live in a small town; imagine what I could do with this concept in a larger city! So, don't let fear of public speaking or other personal obstacles stop you from creating steady, predictable income for your real estate business. You really can "speak and grow rich" by presenting workshops on real estate investing.

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