They haven’t always been, but after decades of the same information being taught to sell people desperate for cash on a program, it’s just the same old garbage rebranded and repackaged for sale to a new group. We now have the internet and it makes these programs all but obsolete.
People who want to pay hundreds of dollars for the program aren’t bad people or “suckers”, they’re mislead and tricked into buying information that’s free online. An example of being tricked is the latest real estate seminar I attended when the $300 hair cut asked the crowd, “Who wants this free book on Real Estate from our program?” A handful of people raised their hands and one lady jumped up and yelled “Me!” The “instructor” rewards her initiative by giving her the free book and then proceeds to explain to the crowd that action and initiative are rewarded.
This is a Pavlovian trick called conditioning. He was conditioning the crowd to jump at any and all opportunities that come their way today. I immediately knew this and wrote it down. Later towards the end of the class, he reminded everyone that action and initiative is rewarded, and then asked “who is willing to jump on an opportunity of a lifetime?” Nearly the whole room jumped up. He told them that the ones who’re still sitting down are out of luck and the ones who did jump up can now head toward the rear of the ballroom to sign up for the $500 program. In reality, his time was up and the big gun hard seller was now up to try his technique on the rest. We were eventually offer the exact same program in addition to another.
I thought to myself, why the hell would people strapped for cash and wanting a better pay check in their lives pay $500 for information that is free on the internet in a market that’s flooded with these same options purchasers and fippers? The answer is because the salesman sold them on the idea that he’s a multi-millionaire that made his millions with this program.
The reason why these seminars are a rip-off is not just because the information is old, not because the information is available online for free, but because they encouraged these people to go into debt using loans, personal credit, and in house financing to purchase this program for $500. This is not a smart move and the Pavlovian trick proves it.
If you did what my partner and I did, and just sat there through the whole class with the intention to absorb information and not spend a penny, you’ll have time to think about your cost to reward. Your return on investment!
This program is a $500 bag of books and CDs. It teaches the student to get loans and use personal credit to buy foreclosures, short sales, fixer uppers, and find motivated sellers. But the group of people who are spending money they already don’t have, for information that’s free, to join a market that’s flooded with these people, is completely dishonest and unethical.
It’s more ethical to buy meat from the grocery store, open it, repackage it, and sell it online as a home delivery for quality meat service. You can get more experience and better help from paying a real estate agent part a contracted commission for help and advice. Plus they can help you to navigate their market.
If you want to flip houses, I have some recommendations first:
Step 1- Have zero debt! Have a budget in place and be able to stick to it with ease.
Step 2- Have an Emergency fund of 3-6 months of expenses.
Step 3- Have a full or part time job that you have a primary focus on and that pays the bills!
Step 4- (At this point if you just want to buy the information packaged and wrapped neatly for yourself, then that’s fine). Do a part time gig as an intern for a real estate agent, home construction contractor, or flipper and get the knowledge first hand on the job and get a feel for the difficulty and expenses you’re getting into.
Step 5- Try to partner with the connections you’ve made in Step 4 and find some investors. Start your own projects that you can sell to your mentors if it becomes overwhelming.
Disclosure: I am not a lawyer and cannot give legal advice. I am not a real estate agent or house flipper. I am offering advice based on personal experience and as such should be taken lightly.
Joseph Adams is a Writer / Producer at per-hour.com and a disabled combat veteran.
Follow him @ThatWTFGuy on Twitter and Instagram!