My wife and I attended the Armando Montelongo Seminar in Bloomington, MN on March 17. I saw the infomercial on tv and my wife encouraged me to go since rentals and flipping is always something that i have talked about wanting to do for years. I told her that I know that they will be asking for money and we didn't have much at the time. I told her that no seminar is really "free".
We ended up going to the seminar and I was impressed that they had Jessie Conners from the 1st season of the Apprentice doing the speaking. She grew up close to Minneapolis and she knew the real estate market in this area. She gave us property addresses of properties that she purchased in the Mpls/St. Paul area that gave her more credibility. She told everybody that her credit was not good and she knew that even if you had a bankruptcy or foreclosure and had bad credit - that it would not make a difference for anybody buying a home.
She said that she has only been successful in the last year in real estate investing since she went to Armando Montelongo's seminar. She said that the previous 4 years, she wasn't successful in real estate investing. What grabbed my attention was that she said that she doesn't use conventional financing to purchase homes. She said that she buys everything through her business name and business credit to buy homes. She also said that she gets 100% financing with the money included for the flip or for holding the property for rental. She said that on her last property that she bought for rental, she took out an additional $45,000 that she didn't need to put back into the property so she went on vacation.
When they told us that the cost to learn how to do this was $6,000 for a 3 day training workshop - I was ready to walk out. She then told us that if we paid that night, we would only have to pay $1,500. She told us that we will learn so much in the 3 day training and especially about the financing. She told us that we will get a list of investors that do 100% financing at the training workshop. These were going to be hard money lenders that were the good ones and not the ones that you find on the internet. Also, we were to get other financing information on buying properties for rentals.
When I went to the workshop the following week in Bloomington, MN, I was immediately un-impressed. I felt like I was at a seminar for something else besides investing. There was a lot of attitude type teaching and fluff that I was not there for. Throughout the 1st day it was all general information and no specific information on how to get the money. The one way that they talked about getting the money was by using your credit cards and home equity line of credit. We spent about an hour betweent the 1st and 2nd day about getting credit cards and increasing your credit limit on your current cards. The trainer, Scott, was constantly asking by a show of hands who had available credit cards with open limits, cash, liquid assets, and open lines of credit on homes. He was doing this to get a feel on who had the money to pay for the next big seminar or seminars where they were going to tell you what you need to know then.
Scott, the trainer, was constantly setting up or preparing people throughout the seminar by telling them that it is "ok" to spend money and use your credit cards for investing or for EDUCATION. He would also show and videos and slides of things that you would get when you moved forward with their mentoring program. He would constantly tell us that when your mentor tells you to jump - you ask how high and do it - you don't question your mentor - you just do what they tell you to do. I personally will accept a person in my life as a mentor from someone who I know nothing about. You can't follow people blindly like they want you to do.
I confronted a couple of the so-called "mentors" about a couple of issues that I had and they could not answer my questions. I asked Mike about what Jessie told us in the "free" seminar that she buys everything in her business name and not personal credit. He didn't know what she was talking about and didn't know what she meant. I also asked Mike about Scott and Armondo's technique about "wholesale" flipping. They said that even if you don't have money or credit that you could write up a purchase agreement for a cash offer and then sell that offer to someone for a profit. That is not legal or ethical. Armondo said that one of his "creeds" is that it has to be safe first. This is not safe since you could lose your earnest money investment and most of all - it is not legal or ethical. When you write up a purchase agreement for a cash offer when you have NO cash - that is not legal and you just put it into writing on a legal binding contract.
I paid $1500 for this seminar and did not learn anything new from what I already knew. I came here to learn about getting the financing to purchase these properties and I was told to use credit cards, borrow money, find private money investors, and use hard money lenders. None of this is new to me or most people who have looked into real estate investing. I was told that I would learn everthing that I needed to know to flip and invest in rentals at the free seminar, but I didn't get that information.
At the end of the 2nd day, they dropped the ball and told us that we need to invest $40,000 to get their best training and mentoring program and to get that price you would have to pay the next day. The next level down was $30,000 which they didn't recommend as much as the other one of course. The last one they told us was $12,000 for a 3 day bus tour in California - not recommended if you want to invest long term and you wouldn't get a mentor or the software. Of our class of around 90 people, there were 17 people that decided to move forward and 2 others that were 70-90% ready but not sure. Scott, the trainer, expected 60% of the room to do this and told us on a few occasions during the few days that he knew that 60% of the room would move forward with the mentorship. When he didn't get the 50-60 people that he expected - he pushed us to borrow money from family and friends and get or use credit cards or lines of credit to invest in this. He also told us not to tell them what we needed to borrow the money for.
I feel that this was a total "bait & switch" to get us to pay $1500 to go to a seminar where they taught us nothing or gave us no true value that you couldn't get for free. This seminar was to get you to pay another $40,000 to be part of the next step. Here are some of the alarming numbers that they gave us. I'm not against people making money as long as they are not scamming people or taking advantage of people:
From Sept to December - 15 months
Armondo had 11,000 people pay for his seminar for $1500 $= $16.5 million dollars
Armondo had 6,000 people pay for his bus tour which costs $12,000 = $72 million
He is now selling these $30,000 & $40,000 training packages which he sold 17 of these in
Bloomington. Let's say 9 @ $30k & 8 @ $40k = $590,000 from one weekend.
Supposedly there are 3 other seminars going on in the country this weekend also.
Armondo says that he is making more money flipping homes than he is doing this, but it doesn't look like it when you run the numbers. Again, I'm not against people making money but when you take advantage of people by not delivering what you tell them - that is wrong. I will not pay the $30k or $40k to find out more information. I don't have the money and will not borrow it from some family or friend. I would not have paid for this seminar if I knew that they were just using us to spend more money and not give us any real or specific information about getting money. Scott spent 30-45 minutes telling us to get $30,000 to purchase 20 mobile homes for $1500 a piece for rentals. That was his big tip or "inside" information. I came here to get information about getting the money and not these general tips. He also said to "google" hard money lenders and private money lenders.
Don't waste your money on this un-informative seminar!