Real Estate Investing Courses to Avoid

It started innocently enough – there was an ad on t.v. at about 11pm one night promising to make me rich through real estate. We’d already bought a couple of properties, but I wasn’t getting rich. I thought that this would be a great way to learn some tricks and maybe even quit my job within a year or two. So, on my lunch hour, I went to the hotel where their free course was being offered.They didn’t teach me a darn thing about real estate investing, but they sure had me pumped up and excited to be a millionaire real estate investor. I barely flinched when I paid $2,000 to attend an upcoming weekend course. I could even bring someone at no additional cost! I could already taste financial freedom.Well, at this one course, I learned a lot. But what I really learned was that I didn’t really know much at all.Sure, they gave me tools that I could use, but they were quick to tell me how their other courses would really help me achieve my goals. Before I was done with this program, I spent a further $20,000 on more courses. Through the course I completed one assignment deal (basically a property flip) to make some cash and bought two properties for no money down. Doesn’t sound that bad, until you find out how off track that course sent me! All hyped up and fully believing in what they were teaching, I made some really bad real estate investing decisions and those bad decisions cost me for many years to come.Despite the detour these courses sent me on, I still believe there are a lot of GREAT reasons to take real estate investing courses:
Networking! You might meet a future partner or mentor.
Can learn a great deal about real estate in a very short period of time.
Learning tricks that may take you years to learn on your own, if at all.
Motivation – the courses I took got me so excited about real estate investing it was all I could think about for months!
Opens doors to an investing network where you may learn about opportunities long before the general public.
But, keep in mind the drawbacks to the real estate investing courses that get the late night t.v. time slots:
Once you’ve attended the free seminar that gets you super excited, the weekend courses are usually pretty expensive.
You can easily experience information overload! In less than 48 hours so much stuff is thrown at you that you don’t know what to do with it.
Upselling! Once you are at the weekend seminar, much of the speakers’ efforts are spent selling different courses. And, when you are a beginner, you feel like you NEED all of these courses to get started!
Techniques don’t always apply to your area, or your target property type. For example, I enrolled in a course that largely applied to the United States market which is different in many respects to the Canadian real estate market.
Despite the drawbacks, and my own personal bad experience, I believe signing up for a real estate investing course is a good starting step for beginner investors, but here’s my tips on ensuring you get your money’s worth with a real estate investing course:Know Your Objectives: What do you expect to get out of investing in real estate (quantify this if you can)? What is your risk tolerance? What is your aptitude (can you or do you want to fix things and/or be a landlord)? Write your objectives down, and have a good idea of what you are trying to do before you look for a course.Do your research! A quick online search for real estate investing courses will turn up a lot of options. Go online and look for forums or reviews of the course. Ask friends and family if they know of anyone that has taken a real estate investing course.Request their company information by mail or go online to learn more about the founding company. Have they been around for awhile? Who, specifically, will be teaching the course? Try to obtain the speakers bio’s before you sign up. What is their experience? Trust me, Robert Allen, Russ Whitney and Donald Trump do not even stop in to say hello during their courses!Leave Your Visa At Home, or At Least Know Your Limits Before you leave the house to go to the FREE course or the paid weekend on real estate investing, decide what is the maximum amount you will pay for the initial course or any subsequent courses and materials. It’s important to do this BEFORE you attend the course. When you attend the FREE or the less expensive courses, the up-sell is going to be a very hard sell. You will be given a rock bottom price if you sign up at that instant. And every bone in your body might be absolutely convinced that you NEED this to achieve your greatest dreams. If you go in with a threshold of, for instance $3,000, then you can hopefully better control what you actually spend on a future course. Emotion plays a big role in your decision to spend more money, and the programs out there feed on this. Take the “impulse” decision out of the equation by knowing what your objectives are and how much you’re willing to spend to achieve those objectives.Take Action! So you found a course that meets your objectives, you met some great people and you’re now armed with some tools and tricks to start building your real estate portfolio. Here’s the key to making your course work for you: Get off your butt and use what you learned!I met with a few different people at one of the courses I attended and they said this was their 4th or 5th course and they still hadn’t bought anything! I estimated they spent about $30,000 on courses and did not have anything to show for it – well, except a fair amount of theoretical knowledge!Real estate investing courses can be valuable – but only if you use what you learn!

Toronto Real Estate Market

Toronto Real Estate Market – An Overview
The Toronto real estate market, much like Canadian winters, can feel like a harsh environment to navigate for the average Joe. With tougher federal mortgage laws introduced in January 2018; many homeowners have literally been priced out of the market, and existing owners have found their property values sticking in neutral or falling with an average loss of 4 percent.With property no longer feeling like a guaranteed investment, we take a look at what has been happening in the Toronto real estate market to lead to this downward trend and how is the wheel of fortune likely to turn over the next 12 months?Mixed fortunes
In recent years property prices have risen exponentially across the GTA, and although this has been a delight for many sellers, it has been a double-edged sword in that fewer people have been able to afford to get onto the property ladder. Those who did buy when the price was high then found their mood falling along with the inevitable decline in market prices as well as those who presumed their home was a stable investment for the future that would only keep increasing in value. There are those of course who are now hoping for a crash to put a definite end to what has felt for many inhabitants as Toronto’s housing affordability crisis, but it is more likely that the market will continue to stabilize with a few bumps along the way during 2019.New federal mortgage laws
In line with the country’s intentions to limit the amount of debt that the population and financial institutions took on; new federal mortgage laws introduced on the 1st January 2018 meant that Canadians getting, renewing or refinancing a mortgage could find themselves having to complete a “stress test”. This is in order to prove that they would be able to cope with interest rates substantially higher than the contract rate. This was relevant even for borrowers who had a down payment of 20 percent or more and was yet another tweak in what has felt like a long line of regulatory changes to actually get on, never mind being able to climb the property ladder.Priced out of the market
These changes affected roughly 100,000 of Canada’s population with half of these still being able to make a purchase other than what they had originally planned and the other half giving up altogether. So, although many people rushed either to buy or sell and upgrade to a property that they would not be able to afford when the new regulations came into force, many people found themselves priced out of a market that they could not afford to enter on paper. This is true even if they felt they had the financial means to do so or would have met the criteria set in previous years.Buying your way back in
The inevitable rise in property prices across Canada was also seen to reach dizzy heights in the Toronto real estate market but what goes up must come down, and these tougher mortgage laws saw the market begin to balance out during 2018. This trend looks set to continue during the spring of 2019, and it is this news, along with February’s announcement of thousands of newly-created jobs that is providing hope for those wishing to buy for the first time or move higher up the property ladder. With 665 new home developments also taking place in Toronto; it literally could become a buyer’s market.Snowbound
Although Ottawa and Montreal are beginning to see signs of renewed growth and hotting up, Toronto’s real estate market is still generally said to be on the cool side at present, and the literal coolness of the weather hasn’t helped either! A particularly harsh winter has made prospective buyers think twice about even being able to make property viewings and as it takes a while for the snow to thaw so will it take a while for the gradually warming spring temperatures to melt the “froideur” in the Toronto real estate market. More home listings are expected to appear on the market over the spring and summer months, perhaps bringing a modest increase in prices. But, with many other variables affecting real estate trends including elections and the economy; it could be that the Toronto market will neither be firmly in favor of either the buyer or seller but rather your own individual circumstances. Some people will, therefore, be winning, some losing and some breaking-even financially.Luxury properties
The demand for luxury homes and Condos IS expected to increase and as demand usually comes with an increase in prices; those selling these styles of properties look to be definitely in the winning camp. The average price of a luxury house is expected to reach $3,691,700 within the next twelve months and $2,390,405 for a condo.Interest Rates
It is not expected that the bank of Canada will increase interest rates more than once this year, but in the same vein, this means that they are unlikely to fall either. The rate is currently 4.375 percent for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage but with mortgage rates remaining the critical factor in determining the affordability of a home purchase; keeping a close eye on the rate of interest is literally in a buyer’s best interests!Greater Toronto is a Land of hope
Although homeownership rates dropped in Canada for the first time in 45 years in 2018; it is still a country that has one of the highest homeownership rates in the world. More than 40 percent of households under 35 own their own property, and although Toronto is considered to be one of Canada’s least affordable markets, there is still opportunity and hope in the real estate market to make a good investment.Need for a Good Real Estate Lawyer in Toronto Downtown
Finding a good Real Estate Lawyer in downtown Toronto is equally as important as a find a good property to buy in Toronto. Some Lawyers provide great service but charge an arm and a leg for the transaction. Some Lawyer advertises their legal fees as the lowest but their service is equally the lowest in the market. Transparency in Legal Fees structure is one of the main issues with Real Estate Lawyer Fees structure in Toronto Downtown. The only Law Firm stands out from the crowd is Shaikh Law Firm because they have posted their Real Estate Lawyer Toronto Fees on their website. Their reviews suggest that they are transparent, honest and provide a good service. When this article was being published in 2019 Shaikh Law is ranked among the three best Real Estate Lawyers in Toronto, along with Jonathan G. Griffiths and Jay Teichman. Jonathan and Jay’s quality of Legal Service is great but their legal fees are significantly higher than Shaikh Law Firm.How to Choose a Good Real Estate Lawyer in Toronto Downtown
Before you hire your Real Estate Lawyer you should ask the following Questions;1) How many transactions the Real Estate Lawyer completes in a Month?2) How long has the Lawyer been practicing Real Estate?3) What is the Fees Structure and can the Lawyer give a written Quote without any hidden charges?You should always do your research online, ask a friend for any recommendations. It is important to note that your Realtor recommendations are always biased because they usually get kickbacks for recommending a Real Estate Lawyer. Therefore do your own research before you hire anyone. It is always recommended to call up the Real Estate Lawyer in Toronto for a Free Consultation to review your transaction before you engage anyone.