Real Estate Investing is a people business. If there aren't any great real estate meetups in your area you should host an event yourself! It takes a little time, and you'll make some mistakes…I changed venues three times, had a venue cancel on me an hour before the meetup, and I even decided to host an event on New Years Day which only two people showed up to.
Full-disclosure I was warned about hosting on January 1st…but I figured they people dedicated enough to show up on New Years Day are the people I want to hang out with! I had fun, but I still should have moved the date…with all these headaches is it still worthwhile to host an event? I think YES!
What is a real estate investor meetup?
A meetup is a gathering of people from all walks of life to discuss a common interest. Therefore, a real estate investor meetup is a place for real estate investors to come together and “nerd-out” (network)!
Networking is one of the most powerful ways to learn and grow as an investor. There are so many benefits to networking that it is mind-boggling to me that people don’t do it. If you’re shy, go to meetups, if you’re an extrovert, go to more meetups!
Why you should host an event
If there aren’t any meetups in your area, I would highly recommend that you start one!
A year ago I was telling my friend Brandon Turner that there weren’t any real estate investor meetups within 40 minutes of my house. For this reason, I wasn’t able to make it to as many meetups as I wanted to. That is when Brandon told me to start my own meetup!
Now before you start making excuses let me clarify a few things…
- I didn’t know the first thing about hosting an event
- We did not have a venue
- Was not a local in the town (or state)
- I didn’t know a lot of investors in the area
- Didn’t have a large social media following yet
…I wasn’t qualified to host a meetup (was still a rookie investor).
NONE OF THAT MATTERS. Start a meetup!
All you need to do is post the meetup in the BiggerPockets events section, create an event on Facebook, and you could create a meetup.com event if you’re really gung-ho! Use the “If I build it, they will come” mentality, stop making excuses, and see what happens!
If you don’t have a readily available venue, coffee shops and bars are a good place to start! I hosted my first meetup in a local bar, by month two we had outgrown it! We moved to a local church until the schedule didn’t allow us to use their venue anymore. Eventually, we settled on a local beach park (it is Hawaii after all) proving that your venue doesn’t matter!
Every first Tuesday of the month we meet up at this local beach park, and I bring two pizzas (purchased through the business card as a tax write-off) to the event. We hang out in the open, and if it rains (hasn’t yet) we will move under a nearby pavilion. All this to say, your venue doesn’t matter, your experience doesn’t matter, just stop making excuses and start the meetup!
If networking and attending meetups help you hone your craft. Then hosting the event will only enhance your learning curve! People always talk to the host. Therefore, hosting will open new doors to you, and bring you more opportunities to learn!
As stated above, people always talk to the host! When you host an event it gives you the opportunity (almost obligation) to meet every newcomer and make them feel welcome. That automatically increases your networking opportunities.
I'll post links on the bottom of this article to show where I advertise the events!
I believe there is no better way to confirm your understanding of a subject than to teach it. For the same reason, one of the best ways to gain confidence in the real estate investing world is to host an event. This puts you in the spotlight and forces you to learn, and network, more!
Yes, networking is so important that I put it on here twice…so do more of it!
Become the guy!
As we have already discussed, when you host a meetup people always talk to you…this results in you becoming the guy. When you know everyone because of your meetups, you have the opportunity to become “the connector” (a reference to the book Go-Giver).
The connector is a title used to identify people that are good at making introductions.
- Need to find a lender? They know just the guy.
- Need to find a property manager? They have you covered!
Being the connector enables that you are able to solve problems, and introduce people in order to better serve the local community. This helps your reputation improve even more! This ongoing process results in you gaining credibility in the area, and eventually, other investors will be seeking you and your meetup out!
Talk about opening the door for opportunities!
What are you waiting for?
The only two downsides I can think of for starting a meetup are that it takes a little bit of time (maybe an hour a month), and there might be some costs associated with securing a venue or purchasing food. Neither of these downsides outweighs the myriad of benefits to starting a meetup! If the small price is a concern you can start a donation jar, or not provide food for the event.
Bottom line is this…if there isn’t a good meetup in your area, start on today! If you have any questions shoot me an email, and I want to hear your success stories too!
Post your event on BiggerPockets!
Check out my Facebook group to see how I set up the event!