Admit it: One of the main reasons you pulled the trigger on a Real Estate investing career is because of the potential you saw to pull cash in hand over fist over the next year or two as the market works its way through the pile of foreclosed properties. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to secure your future and give notice to your boss that he or she will have to learn to get by without you. If you’re going to do that, though, you’ll have to get an education in real estate investing – and avoid some of the little mistakes that can cost you a fortune.

Some of the gurus like to stand up on the stage and go on and on about how they made mistakes on their way to overwhelming success, and there’s no doubt that they’re right. Where some of them go wrong is by wasting time giving a long-winded explanation about some huge, complicated mistake that nearly cost them the shirts off their backs.

Big mistakes are bad.

But it’s little mistakes that can kill you.

For instance, assuming that all you need to succeed as a Real Estate investor is the little real estate investment course you bought after watching a guru’s infomercial late one night when you were too lazy to stand up and walk the three feet to where you left the remote control. Admit it: They talked a good game and they got you – hook, line, and sinker.

The opportunity they told you about is real.

But a little bit of information and a lot of happy crappy isn’t enough to make you rich. That little mistake could cost you more than you realize. It might just cause you to lose faith in your dream of real estate riches.

If you want good vibrations, drink Sunkist. If you want explosive Real Estate investing profits, get a real education. Learn more than just a brief overview or outline of real estate investing techniques, because the ability to make big money in real estate centers around how much you know, what you can do, and how you can do it. It doesn’t hurt to be motivated to get started, but without a fully loaded arsenal of practical real estate investing knowledge, your options are as limited as your chances of true success.

If at least part of your education in real estate investing doesn’t include learning how to actually do a subject to transaction or other common real estate investing techniques, you may as well be marching off to war with some cream cheese icing and an electric mixer instead of a weapon. My point is that when you’re trying to invest in real estate you have to know how to do these simple transactions.

little mistake that could cost you a bundle in lost time and current, as well as future, profits, is the thought that a good mentor won’t bring enough to the table to be worth the investment.

Not a good thought.

A good mentor can tell you a lot. Like some of the ways he or she managed to lose money in real estate investing. There are hundreds of ways you can structure real estate transactions that could have you whistling all the way to the bank. Unfortunately, there are thousands of ways to lose money in real estate. A mentor can fill you in on some of the gory details that could cost you an arm and a leg.

There are also little tips and tricks you could learn from a mentor that might take you years to learn on your own. Like knowing when to shut up when negotiating with a distressed property owner. In certain situations, your natural inclination will be to fill an uncomfortable silence with small talk or idle chatter.

Did you know that if you would just lean back in your chair and shut your mouth the seller might just concede your point, accept your offer, and you could strut out of their house with a signed agreement in your hand – an agreement that could put tens of thousands of dollars into your pocket?

Little mistakes like these can be reminders that knowledge and experience are critical to your success as a real estate investor. And lacking knowledge and the good judgment that could be passed on to you by a good – or even great – mentor are key ingredients in investing failure.

I know it’s only money, but wouldn’t you rather it be all the little things you do right that adds thousands to your bottom line rather than a bunch of little mistakes that wind up costing you a deal – or your dreams?

Go ahead, start your investing career. But whatever you do, aim for huge success.

Because little mistakes really stink.

Sean Flanagan went from dead broke, living off Ramen Noodles and selling used pallets from the roadside for $20 a day, to a self made real estate multimillionaire in under 2 years time. He now shares his secrets with thousands of students across the country. Amber Sea

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