One of the comments we receive most often at our workshops is, “Where were you guys when I started out?” People approach us who have been in this business for numerous years and have spent thousands on previous real estate education, and they are equally frustrated and inspired when they learn our business strategies. They’re frustrated that they didn’t learn the right path to success earlier, but they’re inspired to apply their new knowledge to their current business and finally attain the level of success they’ve been seeking.

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I recently heard from one man in his early twenties who attended our workshop and couldn’t help but crunch some numbers. A few years earlier, his grandmother’s neighbor offered to sell her house to him because she could no longer afford to keep it and it was approaching foreclosure. Because of some bad education and crappy coaching, he passed on the deal.

Then he watched with his hands tied as the house sold at auction for $20,000 more than he could have purchased it for, then again as it resold for retail. He was sick to his stomach when he realized that, had he purchased it for what the neighbor offered, managed a light rehab, and then put it back on the market, he could have made at least $150,000 on that one deal.

I felt for the guy, but I couldn’t help but extend his missed opportunity even further. “You know what’s going to make this hurt even more?” I asked him. “If you had followed through on that deal eighteen months ago and then invested that $150,000 back into your business through the sales and marketing strategies we teach, do you have any idea how many houses you could have flipped by now?”

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Thankfully, he wasn’t one to wallow in the past and instead took this lesson as an opportunity to learn and grow. But he wholeheartedly agreed with something I’ve been saying for years: “Ignorance is expensive.”

If you think education is expensive, you should see the price tag for ignorance. If you think running a business is pricey, you should see how much it costs when a business runs you.

Some of you still think you can’t afford to invest into yourself and your businesses. Have you ever asked yourself if you can afford NOT to? I understand that those numbers are harder to crunch because they’re harder to see and even harder to feel. The young investor at the workshop didn’t see or feel the future numbers when he was in the thick of a possible business deal eighteen months ago. All he saw was how it would affect him today.

But you have to make yourself look and feel past today. Today’s ignorance is expensive, but it is nothing compared to tomorrow’s regret.