Investment Secrets – Only 2%

Last month Pine Financial Group hosted the 2020 Minnesota Real Estate Investor Success Summit, it was a great event and we had our best turn out to date at over 215 registered! I had the opportunity to emcee the event, which is always fun because deep down inside I think I am a stand-up comedian. Ask my wife and she will tell you there is nothing a want-to-be comedian loves more than a new audience! I thoroughly enjoy the chance to get in front of a crowd and provide the tools to grow their business.


At the Success Summit, I was feeling especially froggy and offered anyone in attendance the opportunity to schedule a call with me to help offer some guidance or feedback on their current strategy or goals. More than 10 years investing in real estate, I have been fortunate to participate in thousands of deals as a hard money lender, developer, landlord, agent, flipper, etc. I fully recognize, and respect, that I may not have been the most established investor in the room that day, but I was the only one with a microphone offering this opportunity. This is where the 2% comes into play, I had only four people take me up on the offer. This could be an evidence of my poor ability to “sell” the service, or I suspect it is more of an indication of the difference between the 2% and 98% of people attending real estate investing events.

The guys in the office often give me a hard time for my “go to” saying about the events we host, “why are you even here today?” Sure we laugh a little bit, but I really mean it, people identifying themselves as investors are giving up their evenings, weekends, spare moments, and often times money to attend classes, seminars and webinars on this elusive topic of real estate investing. For this reason, I ask the question: “Why are you even here today?” So, what does it take to be in the 2% vs the 98%? One of the many things I love about real estate investing is that almost anyone can do it. It depends on your skill and resources, or your ability to leverage other’s skills and resources, but the non-negotiable is desire. That desire is created by an individual’s vision, often referred to as,


“The Big Why” and the beauty of it is that it is different for everyone! One person’s goal in attending an event might simply be to buy a home to live in, while others may be on their way by syndicating $100 Million in multifamily investments. Most are somewhere in between looking to supplement or replace their current income through investing. The ability to execute the individual plan comes back to the “why,” peoples go to whys are “for my family”, “to quit my job,” “to be rich.” Let’s just dissect the family answer, because in order to attend all these events, the attendee must spend time away from their family. If the goal to invest in real estate is to help their family -Is it to create additional income to cover an event, like college or a wedding?

  • Is it to provide income that would allow a family a nicer home, better schools?
  • Is it to supplement income so that a spouse can stay home or reduce hours to spend time with family?
  • Is it to replace income so that you are more available to be with your family?

Once the true why is established, you reverse engineer what it will take to accomplish the goal, how many flips, rentals, wholesale deals, etc. This is a relatively simple process; however, in all of my time around real estate investors, I have found that a lack of vision is what leads to aimlessly attending event after event, hoping to achieve the topic that was last presented until the next shinny object appears.

The four phone calls I had with those that took advantage had a common theme, they just needed to hear it from someone else. It is amazing how an objective third-party opinion can bring a plan in to prospective so quickly.

Two were trying to figure out how to get into small multifamily properties 20-50 units, but both needed to take some very specific (although not obvious) steps to make that a reality. The other two just needed to structure a small rental portfolio to provide enough monthly cash-flow that they could retire a little more comfortable.

2020 is well underway, before spending another evening or weekend away from your loved ones or paying to attend a “life changing” event, I challenge us all to slow down and identify, “why we are here today.”