Saturday, May 14, 2005

Seminars, Gurus, Entrepreneurs & Broken Dreams

There are many seminars on RE that have differnt takes on how to get rich. This CNN Money story reveals that success may prove elusive. "The Enlightened Millionaire Institute charges well into five figures for premium packages that can include the opportunity to do deals with the gurus themselves."

"But what this inspiration industry downplays is that most students don't have the talent or timing or temperament to strike it rich. With real estate seminars turning out thousands of would-be moguls every month, all pursuing the same no-money-down schemes on the same fringes of a market bound to slow sooner or later, the odds of making a quick fortune in real estate are becoming vanishingly small."

"Most gurus make light of setbacks as mere bumps on an inevitable road to success. Mark Victor Hansen announces with a smile that both he and co-leader Robert Allen had been bankrupt. Then he turns to Allen and asks, 'How did you sleep when you were bankrupt? 'Like a baby. I woke up every two hours and cried.'"

"Larisa Belliveau, an MBA, turned to real estate to make a living. All told, she studied under five gurus and three coaches, spending $75,000 on classes, materials and marketing, nearly all of it in credit-card debt that she hasn't paid off. 'It's not for the faint of heart. I think I was too soft.'"


At 12:44 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


At 1:51 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have been an under employed computer programmer for a couple of year now. I had a chance to make a some money selling morgages. Just could not bring myself to do
it. I knew I would let it slip that we were screwing the public and it was all a bubble.
I probably would have lasted only a couple of months.

At 2:32 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

>one newly minted investor bid $210,000 on a property thinking it was a condo. "You should have seen her face when she realized it was just a parking space" in a condo's garage, he says.

This is too funny! I can't wait until this bust really get going. There going to be so many stories like this.

At 2:44 PM, Anonymous Frank said...

I don't understand this. Surely these seminars would be much better suited for a downmarket. Today houses are expensive and rents are low.

Know I understand why I see these signs "We buy houses cash in any condition". But in this market you can sell a complete POS house at a ridiculous price. Especially in my neighborhood it's a complete waste of time.

At 3:11 PM, Blogger hawaii said...

What is a POS house? Thanks.

At 3:15 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

POS = piece of sh*t

At 3:16 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


"POS" = piece of s_ _ t.


At 3:39 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

POS = my $1.2 million dollar, 900 sqft fixer-upper in SoCal.

At 4:02 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This article encourages that sort of thinking - Your Zip Matters More Than Your 401K. It is in the "retirement planning" section.

At 4:15 PM, Blogger deb said...

Quote from the article linked above:

"If you're committed to living in a low-appreciation state, you need to take your savings very seriously. If you happen to live in a state with a high appreciation rate, count your blessings -- and pray that your house will continue to be your biggest asset."

PRAY? PRAY! That's great financial planning. The author actually thought that might be good retirement advice for those of us in high appreciation states.

At 8:38 PM, Anonymous will said...

My favorite line is this:
"In addition, you have to save actual money in a 401(k) plan, while your home appreciation is "free money."

only suckers save "actual money"

real money vs. unreal money, which is better? tonight at 11.

At 9:13 AM, Anonymous tim said...


These seminars are "graduating" an army of speculators who are loosed upon the land in search of the elusive (and perhaps mythical) "easy mark"---those sellers who are either too infirm or too stupid to have any clue as to what real estate value are.

As already mentioned in this string, this sort of vulture capitalism is vastly better-suited to down markets than up. But the newbies lining up to pay thousands to these gurus don't understand this.

Trying to separate a fool and his money is a time-honored tradition. But I wonder how successful these student will be in finding fools to fleece? Seems to me that the fools being parted from their money in this case are the students of these seminars themselves.

A few years back, when RE was a tough biz, I remember reading about a team of speculators (read: crooks) who had gotten ahold of a list of people with various degrees of Alzheimers. They would call them or visit them and try to get them to sign paperwork signing over their homes at fire-sale prices. As I recall, I think the tactic was pretty successful until the speculators were indicted.


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