By Patrick Francey
“I’d invest in real estate but…”
“… I just don’t have the time.”
“… I’m waiting for the economy to turn around.”
“… I don’t have enough money.”
“… My spouse won’t let me.”
“… I lost my job AND my spouse left me!”
During a presentation at a recent monthly REIN meeting, I flashed a PowerPoint slide that listed about 30 examples of real estate investing challenges that real estate investors face. It was a list of reasons that people give, either for not investing in real estate or for why they’ve come to a screeching halt in growing their real estate portfolio.
I asked the audience to raise their hands if one or more of these reasons listed have stopped them from investing in real estate. In an instant, almost all hands in the room went up!
I then asked, “Please keep your hand raised if you overcame the hurdle and continued to invest and grow your portfolio.” Almost every hand remained raised.
The point of this exercise was simple: As investors, we have all faced hurdles at some point, and some of them seemed insurmountable at the time. Yet, in a room of over two hundred investors, nearly every person who had faced varying real estate investing challenges had also overcome them.
Maybe you have faced hurdles or you know someone who has. Every week I, or someone on the REIN Team, hear from investors (REIN Members and non-Members alike) about at least one challenge or another that is preventing them from moving forward in building their real estate portfolio.
If you’re tapping the brake and feeling uncertain about investing –because you face seemingly insurmountable challenges – here are four lessons for you to consider in your journey to overcome them.
1. Challenges define us
No adversity seems pleasant at the time, and it’s perfectly natural to wish that life could be just a little easier. But who tends to be more widely respected – the lottery winner or the individual who learned lessons and worked through adversity to become a self-made success story? And, which of those two has the tools to overcome whatever life throws at them in the future?
Ask any REIN Member who has faced some of the investing hurdles I listed earlier. They may not wish to repeat them but they’ll likely tell you that overcoming those hurdles helped to improve and elevate their investing.
With 35,000 properties totalling $4.5 billion, there are few, if any, adversities that our REIN Members have not faced and overcome.
2. Challenges are opportunities in disguise
Investors may feel that they’ve been stopped in their tracks by one or many challenges. In my experience, we are at risk of limiting ourselves by living in what we know and in what we believe is achievable. As Henry Ford said, “whether you think you can or think you can’t – you’re right.” If you see these challenges as something that holds you back, they will hold you back. If you see them as a way to stretch into possibilities then nothing can stop you.
See the challenges you face not as hurdles but as a treasure map to greater profit and opportunities in real estate. I love this quote (sometimes attributed to Lee Iacocca or John W. Gardner): “We are continually faced by great opportunities brilliantly disguised as insoluble problems.” The hurdles you face in your investing today are the same situations you’ll look back on in the future and think, “I achieved greater success because of that hurdle.”
3. Every challenge you face has been overcome by others already
Here’s the good news for any Member facing these struggles: You’re not facing anything new. Every hurdle or challenge you’re experiencing has been overcome by current Members and REIN Alumni.
The REIN Community is a true stand for what’s possible in the world of real estate investing and represents an inspiring example to anyone who may be dealing with obstacles.
Whether you’re 25 or 75 years old, whether you have lots of money or no money, whether you have a 9-5 job or you’re self-employed, whether you live in a small town or a big city, whether the market seems hot or cold… someone has gone before you and implemented a strategy for any of these hurdles (and many other hurdles I don’t have room to list) that can be executed to build a portfolio of investment real estate.
4. The simple formula for overcoming any hurdle
Here’s a simple obstacle-destroying formula to put into practice right away:
- Identify the challenge. Start by stating what’s holding you back.
- Determine why this challenge holds you back. Knowing why it holds you back helps you to push deeper into the problem. For example, “I’m in the wrong market” identifies the problem. However, you understand it more fully when you determine: “I’m held back because I can’t find cash-flowing properties.” Suddenly the problem is clarified and may have less to do with your market and more to do with your source of potential inventory.
- Tap into REIN resources to help. Myreinspace.com is the collective experience and knowledge for answers to thousands of questions provided by experienced investors. The forum can be your home for finding answers and engaging in meaningful discussions. And, on reincanada.com, be certain you log into the Member Section and your Knowledge Vault for the latest audio and video downloads, critical forms and economic insights.
- Ask fellow REIN Members for help. Attend the events to connect with other likeminded people and build relationships. Other Members have faced the same hurdles that you’re facing and they’ve overcome them. Ask others for guidance. We have a great group of giving Members who want to help you succeed.
- Take action! Don’t expect a “silver bullet” answer that will magically erase the challenge altogether. Instead, be ready to take what may feel like seemingly small action steps – such as building out your network to fill in your knowledge gaps.
- Stick with it until it’s resolved. Stubbornly refuse to give up by taking constant action to solve the challenge. Revisit the challenge with your fellow REIN Members or Members of the REIN Team. Keep going until it’s resolved.
Whenever I hear someone tell me that there’s something holding them back from investing, I am reminded of the many Member success stories I have shared in previous issues of the REIN Report. With few exceptions, those success stories were born as a result of individuals who stretched beyond the limitations of what they thought possible to what really was possible.
As the saying goes, “investing in real estate simple, but no one is saying investing in real estate is easy.” At times, the path to success can sometimes be littered with a seemingly insurmountable number of obstacles. But you only need look to the REIN Community to see that REIN Members are clearly a stand for what’s possible. The obstacles you may face today will one day be seen only in the rear view mirror as defining moments that made you a better investor.
Patrick Francey is the CEO of REIN. As a serial entrepreneur he owns many businesses and has been a real estate investor for nearly 20 years. The majority of his holdings are located in Edmonton and Grande Prairie. Reach him at email@example.com.