It may have been Socrates who said:
"Smart people learn from everything and everyone.
Average people learn from their experiences.
Stupid people already have all the answers."
So, to get to the next level as a property investor, you will need to learn from everything and everyone.
On the other hand, if you believe you already have all the answers you may be in trouble and will likely never achieve the level of success you are hoping for.
There are many areas of life where it would pay to have a mentor, but when it comes to property investing, I believe it is even more crucial.
Because you have a small window of time and a finite amount of resources in which to get it right.
To put it simply, any mistakes you are going to make are going to cost you a great deal of time and money.
It is probably why most property investors never reach a level of financial independence.
I believe the number one reason why you need a mentor is to learn from their mistakes and to ensure you get it right the first time.
Here are my thoughts.
The number one rule of investing according to Warren Buffet to never lose money.
An expert is not someone who has never made mistakes.
They are someone who have in fact made many, but despite making mistakes, they have found a way to succeed.
This is the type of mentor you need to have on your side, to avoid the traps and pitfalls and ensure you get it right the first time.
As I had suggested, starting and stopping and making mistakes could cost you a great deal of money and time.
Imagine having someone alongside you to ensure you got it right the first time and fast-tracked your goals in an efficient and timely manner.
This is what a mentor can do for you.
If I am looking for a property mentor a few “must-haves” immediately spring to mind.
Firstly, as the saying goes, I want someone who has been there and done that and has written the book, so to speak.
A mentor must have decades, not just years of experience, and should have already achieved what I am looking to achieve.
They should have a proven framework and strategy that leads to results and that can be replicated and then implemented to assist me with my long-term goal.
This can only be developed with time, investing through multiple property cycles, understanding the driving forces and what works every time.
They have initially made mistakes on their own time and with their own money to learn the critical lessons that I am trying to avoid.
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A mentor should be very successful and have the runs on the board to prove it.
Your mentor should be able to help you understand the bigger picture and what the end game is for you.
Building wealth is not simply an outcome, it is a process and part of a long-term plan.
If you start by moving toward property or a preferred location, without understanding the bigger picture and the process, you are in the wrong place.
Understanding the end goal will help you understand where you need to be over both the short and medium-term and what it will take to get there.
A mentor will also meet regularly to ensure you are on track, hold you accountable and ensure you stick to the plan you have in place.
When times are difficult, they will work with you to get you back on track as they have been in that situation themselves.
Beware of the new breed of property mentor or “expert”!
The ones with barely years of experience, may not even be property investors themselves.
Sure, they look the part on social media and may have many followers, but they lack the depth and experience an expert must have.
These people usually have something to sell initially, perhaps a property or a location they buy in.
They are tied to the outcome and do not follow a process.
In many cases, it is purely transactional as they do not offer anything more substantial or longer term.
This can be very dangerous as you may be part of their learning experience in their quest to become an expert.
There are many different reasons to have a mentor.
The important part is finding the right mentor.
One with decades of experience, with a seamless process in place to help you achieve your goals.
One who knows where all the landmines are so you don’t step on them.
I’ve found that trying to do it all on your own, will invariably lead to mistakes.
This will result in a huge amount of lost time, not to mention money.
Sure, mentors come at a cost, but the outcome you achieve will result in it being a small price to pay in the scheme of things.
It would certainly be far less than the money you lose from making mistakes that could so very easily have been avoided.
So beware of the new breed of experts, especially in the property industry.
If you had not realised yet, there are 25 million property “experts” in Australia, so choose your mentor wisely!