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Why the REIA Group is essential today

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Why the REIA Group is essential today

Pete Youngs (aka Mr. Rehab)

Like it or not, the environment in which real estate investors (and other businesses) have had to operate and adapt has changed significantly since the COVID-19 pandemic hit. In my case, not only had I invested in real estate, I had been a national speaker throughout my career, speaking in 100-200 cities per year for live training sessions. Then, all of a sudden, it was like the world shut down. People could not gather in any capacity, venues were closed, meeting spaces were unavailable, and honestly, my business came to a complete halt.

After all, the essence of my business was in-person networking. Main events would bring in anywhere from 75 to 300 people, with on-site training sessions with about 50 people on buses. Weekend bus trips would visit properties and teach them about inspections, estimates, renovation costs, how to hire contractors at about 50% off regular general contractor rates, and more. Also canceled were some of my favorite and most popular activities, including mold certification training and the Signature Home Depot national store tours that I started at our corporate headquarters over 20 years ago.

The pandemic has forced us to change because live, in-person events were canceled (though thankfully they have since resumed) and no one can predict how long they will last. I consider myself old school, and even people who have been speaking with me for decades have had to change the way they do things in order to survive.

I originally got into the industry through my brother, Tony Youngs, who is an expert in finding distressed and hidden market properties, and I was doing repairs and rehabs. Tony had been arranging weekly coaching calls and one-on-one training for years, which was a wise move. But the pandemic has created a whole new breed of people who are taking advantage of the limited in-person seminars and REIA meetings that are only available to the internet and tech-savvy.

They opened up the world to online meetings like Zoom. Of course, most people were already using them, but many of us “career investors” weren’t using these tools. So when we realized we could sit at home in our pajamas and watch seminars without having to travel to an in-person event, many of us loved the concept. Some REIA groups fell for the idea that going in that direction would cut down on overhead costs like room rental, food and beverage, and speaker travel. But many of the less tech-savvy REIA groups lost, went bankrupt, or sold their businesses.

Now, here’s why I give you all this background. Recently, I changed my business plan to adapt to the market. My wife, Barb, and I used our IRA accounts to: Kamaplanand started using tax-free and tax-deferred plans (CamaPlan is a preferred vendor for National REIA) to supplement our income. We purchased two REIA groups that I personally run. North Metro REIA, Atlanta, Georgia and Metrolina Leia of Charlotte, North CarolinaWe did this as live and in-person training is starting to pick up again, and while most REIAs are not yet back to full capacity, we can’t emphasize enough the huge benefits of the in-person training and in-person networking that happens at REIAs across the country.

Attending meetings and exchanging business cards with buyers, sellers and private money lenders, plus the education provided each month is truly unique – nothing comparable anywhere.

moreover, If your REIA is a member of the National REIARewards also include 20% off almost all paint at Home Depot, a biannual 2% discount, discounts on cabinets and appliances, and savings from many other providers. All membership benefits can be found on the National REIA website.

But above all, remember: there is no better investment than membership in a local REIA group, especially one that is affiliated with the National REIA. Where else can you improve your future for the cost of going out to a nice dinner? Every day is an opportunity. Some people sit at home and hope that a clearinghouse or lottery will deliver a life-changing event to their mailbox, while others realize that they’re not going anywhere unless they move.

That being said, my final message to you is this: Don’t let someone who has given up on their dreams convince you to give up on yours. Think about it for a moment and thank me later.

Pete Youngs, also known as “Mr. Rehab,” speaks nationwide on how to rehab homes for up to 50% off. He gives seminars and bus trips promoting a training system he calls SWAT (Simple Ways And Techniques). He’s been a contractor and investor for over 30 years. Find out more about him at PeteYoungs.com.

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