Most successful real estate investors had a mentor at some point. Mentors play an important role in the life and business of a novice investor. A real estate investing mentor leads by example, listens to you, and provides useful knowledge from personal experience.

That is not to say, however, that a mentor can prevent you from making your own mistakes. Mentors advise and guide you, but it is ultimately your real estate business. You succeed or fail based on your own actions. Nevertheless, a trustworthy mentor will improve your odds of success.

Finding a quality mentor

You want a mentor who is not competing against you but is active in real estate investments. There are some people who claim they are retired from the real estate business, yet offer themselves as mentors. If they are charging a fee, they are not retired, and you really have to wonder why they are no longer actively investing in and managing properties. Ultimately, you’ll want to learn from a person who is truly passionate about real estate investing.

You can find useful information by networking with other investors in the Real Estate Investment Association (REIA). There may be an opportunity for you to learn from one of the more successful investors. There are many people who label themselves real estate gurus and sell mentoring services, so be sure to conduct some thorough research on any program you seriously consider.

Qualifying a mentor

You have already had lots of mentors in your life. Your parents were the first ones. If you excelled at sports or displayed some musical talent, you probably had a coach or teacher who took pride in helping you achieve your potential. The best kind of mentor is someone who has a pre-existing relationship with you and the mentoring grows naturally from that.

Even if you do not have an existing relationship with an expert, you can still find trustworthy mentors. Finding a real estate investing mentor should be approached like hiring any professional: ask them for references and ask other people what they know about them. Any person worthy of being your mentor should have some people who have already received valuable guidance from them.

As a real estate investor, you need a team of trustworthy people you can rely on for honest and objective counsel. Building this team is an ongoing process, and you do not have to be in a rush to form what will be one of your most important relationships.

Related Articles:

Hiring a Multifamily Investing Mentor or Consultant – The Pros and Cons

What’s It Really Like to Be a Real Estate Investor?

5 Biggest (And Costly) Mistakes Real Estate Investors Make

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Theresa Bradley-Banta writes about investing in real estate while avoiding the pitfalls that plague many new investors. She is a 2017 PropTech Top 100 Influencer and winner of 14 American and International real estate awards for her website and real estate investing programs. As featured on: The Equifax Finance Blog, AOL’s Daily Finance, Scotsman Guide, The Best Real Estate Investing Advice Ever Show, Stevie Awards Blog, Rental Housing Journal, and Investors Beat among others.

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