Saturday, July 9, 2011
The former "Flip This House" TV guru Armando Montelongo has been besieging Seattle the last few weeks with endless repetitions of his infomercial for his "Mega Millionaire Round Table" events.
His ads actually began to appear on my own website here via Google's Adsense.
So I decided to check out one of his events held in Bellevue, Washington.
As usual, I was surprised how many people turn out for these get-rich-quick real estate seminars. In this case, there were nearly one hundred people in the middle of a Wednesday afternoon. The crowd looked like your typical infomercial target audience, more blue collar than white.
What didn't surprise me is how poor this program was or how it featured virtually every real estate guru scam that I wrote about this week on my website. Here is the article I posted the very same day I attended Armando's seminar.
Armando himself was not at the event in person. Instead, a presenter that I would describe as too slick by half attempted to use every old trick in the book to get people to sign up for a three-day $900 seminar.
First, what I call "The Guilt Trips." Make people feel bad about themselves for being financially stressed. This technique works very well with men, the traditional breadwinners of the family.
"Don't you want to be rich? Why don't you try harder?"
"Invest in yourself. No one else will."
"When you are successful your family will respect you. Your community will respect you."
"Are you going to let your children down when they need help going to college?"
Then comes the sales pitches, what I call "The Bait."
"Would you like to earn more money in one month than you did all last year?"
"Armando is not smarter than you. He just has a system that you don't."
"You can make $20,000 without a boss, a timecard, or even getting out of bed."
Inevitably, comes "The Hook" or the actual sales offering, in this case a $900 three-day workshop. Unfortunately, I saw about a dozen people actually sign up for it.
What I gathered at the event, Armando teaches a mixture of using hard money loans to buy property and all the classic property flipper techniques, NONE OF WHICH work in the real world like the gurus describe in their courses. From a substance standpoint, I heard nothing new. I also know that despite the claims of his infomercial, no substantive advice was shared at this event. In other words, if you went to this free seminar trying to learn about real estate investing, you got cheated.
I also know that this $900 seminar is really just a sales pitch for Armando's Bus Tour, a major event which has the eye popping price tag of $24,997! Yes, people do actually pay nearly $25,000 to ride around with Armando in a bus looking at properties. Or at least that is what was promised them.
The Internet is filled with complaints about Armando Montelongo and his poor sales practices. I don't believe much of what I read online about the real estate gurus since (1) many of the good testimonials are put there by the gurus themselves or their shills and (2) much of the bad testimonials are posted by competitors seeking to damage each other. So I discount 99% of what I read online and don't believe the rest.
But I do believe my own eyes.
At least with respect to the one event I attended this week, this is the worst real estate program I have attended in years. The Armando's Mega Millionaire Round Table makes Robert Kiyosaki's Tigrent programs look like a paragon of virtue. There were so many get-rich-quick guru stereotypes built into this one ninety minute session that the entire presentation bordered on self-parody.
Think Dan Aykroyd of Saturday Night Live fame.
I cannot recommend Armando Montelongo's Mega Millionaire Round Table at all. Don't waste your time with it. I have not read his book "Flip and Grow Rich" but I can just imagine what's inside.