Author Topic: When investors aren't willing to share  (Read 1438 times)

jeromedawg

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When investors aren't willing to share
« on: April 26, 2017, 09:49:18 AM »
Hey all,

Just curious what your general experience is with other investors you've met who have rubbed you the wrong way (at least initially). I met an apparently 'experienced' buy and hold investor at an REI networking dinner a couple nights ago who barely said a word about his investments the whole night. Definitely a taker and not a giver. He seemed to be very intentional about who he talked to as far as the knowledge he could get, and the only time he would talk was to give his opinionated viewpoint on nominal topics. When any of us asked him about his investments, he kept very quiet and gave the most vague answers. I initially asked him "so what kind of investments are you buying" and his response was the typical smart-a one: "the kind that are profitable." :rollseyes: At one point, a guy asked him where he is invested and he responded "Well, I can't give away all my secrets" - I thought that was a pretty jerk-response and quite selfish, considering everyone else around him was sharing a lot about what they're doing. After some indirect probing from myself and others, we found out generally some places where he has invested and invests currently. But even one of the more senior investors came over and started pinning him with questions about why he has his opinions about certain REI topics... probably because he was just as irritated with him as the rest of us were. Otherwise the guy was pretty rude, ignoring questions from other investors - at one point I had to remind him that one guy asked him a question before he interrupted him to get the waitress to change his order, and even then he conveniently "forgot" what that investor had asked him despite it being a pretty simple question (this may have actually been the question about where he's invested where he responded how he can't give away his 'secrets').

I'm sure we all have come across these people but it's quite annoying. What do you guys generally do when you meet these kinds of investors? Cut the conversation short and try to ignore them? Or do you keep probing them and trying to network with them for future opportunities? I know with some people it just takes some time for them to warm up, but I think there's a difference, especially when you observe how they act outside of not wanting to give any information (e.g. if it's obvious they're just there to 'receive' and not 'give' especially when they're not just starting out). I tend to lean towards avoiding such persons because if this is how they are why would I want to work with them in the future? Is that just too myopic of a perspective?

On a related note, I know probably a lot of investors don't want other investors stepping on their toes or 'competing' with them so they avoid telling them where they're invested. Is this really such a thing to be concerned about? It seems like there will always be places to buy and hold and people who are looking to rent. I guess some people feel they have 'magic bullets of cashflow' and if they tell others where they're invested, they'll give it all up? In the same vein, I'm sure most investors are of the mindset "I had to figure it out on my own so likewise for you" - that part I get... sure, you don't have to tell me the exact neighborhood you're in and what deals there are, but cities and states? It just seems a bit petty to withhold that because you think others will steal the show.
« Last Edit: April 26, 2017, 10:02:30 AM by jplee3 »

Last Night

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Re: When investors aren't willing to share
« Reply #1 on: April 26, 2017, 10:14:57 AM »
Hard to say what I would do without context of where you were, what you were doing, what the event was about, who were the people around you?

Was this some form of a networking event/dinner with random people you've never met?  After the first 5 minutes of him being vague I'd most likely put him on ignore for the rest of the event, the childish part of me thinks I'd even go to great lengths to ensure he doesn't hear any of my conversations with others too.

Mind you I take things like that pretty personal (maybe I shouldn't) as I am very giving in general, most people are receptive to that and take an equal role, but certain types don't and this guy is "that guy" that I can't stand.  Zero self awareness and can't read a room.  If it's something top secret where he has a leg up, he can easily be respectful about not sharing and he is not obligated to show all his cards, I mean I don't, but you can still be a civilized person about it.
« Last Edit: April 26, 2017, 10:17:40 AM by Last Night »

jeromedawg

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Re: When investors aren't willing to share
« Reply #2 on: April 26, 2017, 10:31:04 AM »
Hard to say what I would do without context of where you were, what you were doing, what the event was about, who were the people around you?

Was this some form of a networking event/dinner with random people you've never met?  After the first 5 minutes of him being vague I'd most likely put him on ignore for the rest of the event, the childish part of me thinks I'd even go to great lengths to ensure he doesn't hear any of my conversations with others too.

Mind you I take things like that pretty personal (maybe I shouldn't) as I am very giving in general, most people are receptive to that and take an equal role, but certain types don't and this guy is "that guy" that I can't stand.  Zero self awareness and can't read a room.  If it's something top secret where he has a leg up, he can easily be respectful about not sharing and he is not obligated to show all his cards, I mean I don't, but you can still be a civilized person about it.

This was a relatively informal networking meeting at Mimi's Cafe solely for the purpose of meeting other investors, sharing deals, and talking shop. Everyone else around was a real estate investor in some way shape or form. This was my first meeting with them so I hadn't met any of the people there, including this guy. I sort of started ignoring him and I think he probably felt like a combination of that and us not being "good enough" to talk to is what prompted him get up and go to the other side of the table to talk to a couple guys who were doing stuff "he was interested in" - dunno how the conversations went on the other side of the table but if I had to guess it was probably a lot of him fishing for information.

I tend to agree with you though - there's ways to go about it where you don't come off sounding like a haughty and pompous jerk. I don't think it was this guy's intention to be a jerk but when you come into these meetings with a "know it all" attitude about trivial things but won't talk about anything you're actually doing, it doesn't help and it sure as heck doesn't make me (and alot of other people) want to have conversations with you.
« Last Edit: April 26, 2017, 10:33:03 AM by jplee3 »

redrocker

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Re: When investors aren't willing to share
« Reply #3 on: April 27, 2017, 07:50:15 AM »
When any of us asked him about his investments, he kept very quiet and gave the most vague answers. I initially asked him "so what kind of investments are you buying" and his response was the typical smart-a one: "the kind that are profitable." :rollseyes: At one point, a guy asked him where he is invested and he responded "Well, I can't give away all my secrets"

My initial perception would be that he has little to no investments but wants to maintain appearances and an aura of mystery to inflate his importance. Not worth your time to get bothered about but certainly not someone I'd want investing near me so I wouldn't blame you for keeping him out of your future conversations.

Cwadda

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Re: When investors aren't willing to share
« Reply #4 on: April 27, 2017, 08:29:32 AM »
I wouldn't bother probing with him. For every guy like him there's another that'll be super open and helpful. Besides, investors don't have to tell you jack. What I've found is that the most successful ones tend to be open and have a huge network i.e. all of the guests on the Bigger Pockets show. I always give information to people that are interested in what I'm doing. There're plenty of investments around - it's a matter of who really wants to go get them.

If you're really interested in his properties, you could always searching town tax records I suppose.