Thursday, July 23, 2015

Alternatives To Scott McGillivray's Real Estate System

I recently received an unsolicited postal mail invitation to attend a free Scott McGillivray real estate seminar in Burlingame.  I have no intention of taking Mr. McGillivray up on his offer of free stuff in exchange for an entire morning of my precious time.  I've been to enough free real estate seminars (okay, just a couple) to know how they work.  I can think of other ways to break into DIY real estate.

If I were serious about fixing and flipping properties, my first stop would be my local big-box home and garden retailer.  Those chains have free classes on rehabbing and they can help price out job materials.  Your helpful hardware dealers are always there for you because they want repeat business.

My next stop would be my local public library.  Have you ever heard of those?  They still exist in the digital age and the ones in San Francisco have excellent collections marked "real estate."  I would grab the most detailed tomes on home repair and maybe a book on appraising.  Speaking of the digital age, Zillow and RealtyTrac have all of the local market info I need to price whatever I want to buy or sell.

Automation has not yet obliterated local bank branches.  Every bank has lists of foreclosed properties they want to unload.  Loan officers are dying to talk to bank customers who walk in the door ready to take problems off the bank's books.  Federal agencies like HUD and the VA still have foreclosures available sometimes for those with the patience to navigate their systems.  I love it when a ready-made source for deal flow is near at hand.

Live seminars used to be good for a laugh when I needed free entertainment.  I don't need fast-pitch, high-pressure seminars to give me some negligible amount of real estate knowledge.  I can learn a lot more on my own.