Top Ten Reasons to Join a REIA

Top Ten Reasons to Join a REIA

Top Ten Reasons to Join a REIA

Back in 1993, one of the first things I did when I was thinking about getting into real estate investing, was to jump right in and start buying single family homes. There I was with 18 months later with 5 houses, 4 great tenants, 1 problem, and no mentors. After going my own way and being my own boss for almost two years I needed help from some more experienced investors.

About that time I heard of a landlords association that was fighting landlord licensing and I started going to meet and greet at a local investor association.

This was back in 1995 before the acronym REIA had taken a stand and become the rallying cry for local investors.

REIA stands for Real Estate Investors Association. Almost every major city has at least one. Across the river in Saint Louis there are at least seven.

Back in the late 90s I heard some great speakers, invested in many courses and programs that really helped launch my investing career. Back then a speaker was in town for one night only, today they also come back for full Saturday workshops.

We had one meeting per month. These monthly evening meeting on subjects like tenant screening, land lording 101,  Lease Options, Making Big Money in Small Properties, flipping properties, income taxes, business structure, business systems, Hard money lending  and many more. Today Illinois REIA holds four monthly meetings and is looking into webinars also.

Back then I was a ravenous student and soaked up everything I could. Along the way I became a teacher as well and have spoken at associations across the country and National REIA events as well.

My course library rests upon over 45 lineal feet of shelving and cost me plenty to acquire. The remaining shelving has courses I wrote and some of the best fiction for when I need a break. Develop and maintain your library.

Top Ten Reasons to Join a REIA

  1. Networking – You get to meet, greet and compare notes with other local investors, handymen, painters, contractors, title companies and other professionals that WILL help your real estate investing career.
  2. Find a mentor – Not only during the actual meeting but at the after the meeting, meeting. They will give you advice that is priceless. Many of these early mentors are still my friends today and they are still in the business. This was great because Jo Ann, Gordon, Phil,  and the others had over a century worth of experience between them when we first met. Have you ever heard the expression, “Been there. Done that. Got the t-shirt.”? Well they had and let me tell you it was one size fits all.
  3. New Ideas – Illinois REIA brings together a variety of real estate investors who come from many and varied backgrounds. Some of our most popular meetings are panel discussions where anything goes. It is great to let these business geniuses talk, share their ideas and even come up with new ones from the audience.
  4. Local Legislation – Illinois REIA has an active governmental affairs committee that keeps everyone informed about local, state and national issues that impact everyone’s bottom line. We use voter voice to get the word out as well as other means because bad legislation spreads like wildfire. Just remember when dealing with the government one voice is annoying, multiple voices is a constituency. We are also part of the state association and the National REIA as well. This gives us the numbers to be a constituency.
  5. Education –  We offer educational classes at all four of our monthly meetings and our super Saturdays. Our members can earn the Professional Housing Provider Designation available through the National REIA, We also have access to online courses as well. Learning a few new facts can save you thousands of dollars in unfair housing claims.
  6. Deals – Our members meet buyers, sellers and market focused real estate agents at our meetings. More than one contract has been signed in the afterglow of a great meeting. We hold a Buy/Sell/Trade session at every monthly meeting.
  7. Making the right kind of Friends – It has been said that you are only as good as the average of the four individuals you hang out with the most.. We are not advising you to sever all ties and rewrite your life. We need different friends for different aspects of our life and personality. Just ask yourself this question. Who do you want to hang out with, your broke friends who keep telling you that you don’t have what it takes, or successful investors who can teach you that you do.
  8. Developing the investor mindset – Let’s face it, we don’t all have the magic money machine filling our bank accounts. We need multiple streams of income to fill the voids in our life. You need an investor mindset to make that happen. You develop this by working with other successful individuals.
  9. No man (or woman) is an island – With an acknowledgement to the poem of John Donne, let us agree he hit the nail on the head. You need positive feedback and reinforcement from others who have been or may still be where you are. Positive friends make positive results. Don’t try and carry the weight of the world on your shoulders. This is the right kind of “Peer Pressure”.
  10. Financial Benefits – Members of Illinois REIA get dozens of discounts and financial incentives to help them succeed. Go to and see what awaits you. 20% off on paint, 2% rebates, in store discounts and more.

Join you local REIA. Hopefully that is Illinois REIA, but join your local REIA. United we are stronger and can achieve our goals together.

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