There are two main ways to lose money in a real estate investment: invest in the wrong vehicle (for you) or invest in a bad vehicle. Both are the result of a lack of education. Without education, you will not be able to tell a good deal from a bad deal, or a good deal for you from a bad deal for you.
A while back, I had the pleasure of interviewing Barbara Huson (formerly Barbara Stanny), author of the books Secrets of Six-Figure Women, Overcoming Underearning, Sacred Success, and Rewire for Wealth (among others).
Check out that interview here: Barbara Stanny Interview
Even though Barbara was the daughter of Richard Bloch, the “R” in H&R Block, and grew up very wealthy, she was never taught anything about money. Her father didn’t think it was a woman’s place to deal with money.
As a result of her father’s attitude, she grew up wealthy and blissfully ignorant, and married a man whom she entrusted with all the financial decisions in her life. She thought her wealth was in good hands. She’d married a financial advisor and a stockbroker. He must know about money, right?
Alas, although he "knew" about money, Barbara’s husband was also a compulsive gambler. He ended up gambling away all her wealth that he could touch. She divorced him and became the single mom of three daughters. Perhaps even worse, he moved to Israel and left her alone with a $1 million tax bill she had no idea how to pay.
When she went to ask her father to give her the money to get out of this terrible bind, he said no.
She had no choice. She had to get educated about money or she would end up on the street with her three daughters! She slowly did learn, but not without major losses first. Before fully getting educated she trusted people and invested in 2 deals that were in her words “stunning and phenomenal losses.”
Barbara realized that she needed to get educated about money and investing so that she would never be in that position again. During that learning process, she realized that she was called to teach others this vital lesson. As so often happens, Barbara realized that what she most needed to learn, she also most needed to help others learn as well. Thus began her journey of teaching other women about money and investing.
In the end, Barbara did get educated. She found 1 million dollars she needed to pay the tax bill, and she’s made millions of dollars since teaching other women about money and wisely investing her dollars.
Lesson Learned from Barbara:
Education is a crucial part of a Real Estate Investor Goddess’ Success Framework, and you may be called to share your most important lessons with the Goddess community and the world.
Without the proper education, you can miss out on opportunities that are right in front of you.
Thus far in my investing career, I have never encountered a “losing” investment where I lost money or made a bad choice that couldn’t be countered for a positive outcome. (Thank goodness, and knock on wood!) However, the more I learn about real estate, the more I smack my forehead because I realize all the opportunities I missed to invest and further grow my wealth.
For a while, my husband and I were flipping houses in Los Angeles. That was fairly lucrative, but now we realize that we could have used that same money in syndications and done A LOT less work and would probably have more money to show for our efforts now. Alas, at the time we were unaware of the power of leveraging OPM (other people’s money), OPT (other people's time), and OPE (other people's experience).
On the bright side, however: we know now, and when you know better, you do better. So, getting educated about real estate, its benefits, and the different asset classes are CRITICAL to being a successful investor.
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“Monick Halm opened my eyes to all the different ways of investing in real estate. I am now invested passively in 2 syndications and a performing note, with $2500 a month passive income, and now I don’t have any lazy money sitting in a savings account earning 0.01%.” — Bernardette Williams