I’ve been buying, servicing and selling distressed mortgage notes since 1999! When I started, there were just a handful of us in the industry. Investing in distressed mortgages was the best-kept little secret. We were all flying by the seat of our pants. It was like the Wild West. There were no rules, guidelines or education courses to help us along the way. We made our mistakes, hopefully learned from them, and moved on.
Nowadays, it seems a lot of people have caught on to what a great and profitable industry this is. It takes a minimal amount of money to get started, you can work from anywhere, and it generates great returns.
However, because of the increased number of people getting involved in distressed mortgages, there seem to be a lot more rules and restrictions being imposed on our industry. In addition, I’ve never seen an industry with more acronyms and formulas. I’m not sure if they’re there to help protect people or intimidate them.
There also seems to be a lot of choices out there when it comes to education and learning the ins and outs of this business. There are some self-proclaimed gurus who send out the message, “you can’t do this without me,” or “the only way you’ll succeed in this business is by taking my course”.
Other education courses want you to listen to pre-recorded conversations as they discuss their experiences for hours on end. While others hold you ransom in a hotel banquet room for the weekend brainwashing you with just how great they are. They lure you in with low-cost seminars and then put pressure on you to sign-up for their full course, where you need to take out a mortgage just to pay for it.
I’m not pointing fingers and I certainly can’t fault others for their methods, I just know that when I started my education program, Keyhole Academy, I wanted to offer something different. I wanted to offer students the opportunity to learn what they wanted, when they wanted it and how they wanted to learn.
The courses we created take our students through the investment process from start to finish. Every facet of investing and managing loans is covered in detail in the form of written chapters, videos, audio, quizzes and a final exam.
When our students complete our courses, we want them feeling confident and prepared to begin investing in distressed notes.
While there are some educators who want their students relying on them, we’re just the opposite. We choose to empower our students so they know they can do this without us. We’re no smarter than you are-- It’s just we have a bit more experience. We want our students investing as soon as possible. We want them to spread the word about their learning experiences with Keyhole Academy so others will sign up and reap the benefits as well.
In terms of how much there is to learn and how intimidating it can be, here’s how I look at it. When I speak with a borrower about them starting to pay their monthly mortgage, I know from experience that there are about five responses the borrower is going to come up with. If I’ve heard these responses before and have worked on my retorts to these responses, then nothing should come as a surprise when I make these calls.
I always tell my students; it’s not rocket science! If you learn and apply these methods repeatedly, they will become second nature.
Here’s another example. When I show students how to start the due diligence process, many of them become frustrated with how much there is to learn. However, when I break down each component into smaller steps and have them repeat them over and over again, these steps soon become automatic to them.
The point here is to not be intimidated. There’s a lot to learn, but it’s doable! I think of it in terms of archery. If I practice my craft, then when it’s time to deal with a borrower with a specific problem, or looking at loans on a spreadsheet, I know which arrow to pull out of my quiver of arrows that I’ve honed and accumulated over time.
Of course, there’s always doubt, fear, frustration and intimidation when we learn new things. However, you should look at the other side in that there’s also excitement, conviction and motivation and essentially think from the end and say, “I can do this!”.
Above all, the one thing you must remember, is that it’s not rocket science!
Sherman Arnowitz Founder & President