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Dave Dubeau [00:00:09] Everyone, this is Dave Dubeau here with another episode of the property Profits Real Estate podcast today Spotlight Interview is with Mr. Ed Matthews from the City Real Estate Investment Association in Connecticut. And Ed, how are you doing this finding?
Ed Matthews [00:00:26] I’m doing great, Dave. Thanks so much for your time today.
Dave Dubeau [00:00:28] My pleasure. Thanks for joining us. So, ed, why don’t you tell us a little bit about your club where you guys are located? What’s your focus on how long you’ve been around? Kind of like a little bit information around your membership, that sort of thing?
Ed Matthews [00:00:42] Yeah, you bet. So we’re the fifth largest city in the country, just over a thousand members. We have about 12000 folks that come in and out of our world on a monthly basis. We’re based in Weatherfield, Connecticut, which is basically right in the middle of the state, and we have chapters in Fairfield County as well as New London County. So we basically cover the whole state and we’ve been around since, I believe, 2006, so we’re just about to enjoy our second year of being. It’s been a fun run.
Dave Dubeau [00:01:08] That’s fantastic. Now, do you guys, I would imagine you kind of cover all things real estate, but is there is there something that your members kind of tend to gravitate towards more? Or do you kind of serve all different kinds of real estate investors?
Ed Matthews [00:01:23] So I would put them probably into, you know, the three major buckets of wholesalers, flippers, rehabs as well as multifamily investors. And so what we bring to the table initially, we were started as a networking organization and that kind of grew into mentoring, you know, being able to, you know, guys like me and my partners, Ron and Rich and Marc and our predecessors, Linda and Joanne and Lou. You know, we wanted to pay forward and so we would start to mentor and have continued to mentor new and aspiring real estate investors and call them the dreamers. And, you know, help them help them get their first or next property. So we do a lot of different things across those three kind of columns from the networking that is our history to a coaching program. We recently launched an insurance company as well as a funding company to help with commercial loans on the money side and insurance products that are investor based on the on the asset protection side. So we do quite a bit and we run pretty hard and, you know, our members have seemed to respond. We did, you know, COVID was an interesting time for us.
Dave Dubeau [00:02:31] Yeah, I was going to ask you about that. How did that whole, that whole little hiccup affect your club? And what did you guys do to adjust to it?
Ed Matthews [00:02:39] So it was a blessing and a curse, right? You know, the curse part was obviously a global pandemic, and it was terrifying in the health aspects and all the all the things that came from that. The blessing part actually is we figured out how to how to create a digital organization in a matter of about a week and a half. And so, you know, as our CEO, Ron says, you know, it’s very difficult to be in the meeting business when you can’t meet. Yeah. And so, you know, we fully embrace the digital world. And, you know, fortunately, a few of us had a bit of a technology background, so we were able to not only keep our members appetites for real estate information satiated, but we actually grew our membership over that time as well, which was really exciting.
Dave Dubeau [00:03:21] Very, very nice. So, yeah, blessing occurs. Definitely. What kind of things have you guys done or what do you guys? What kind of meetings do you guys hold? How often do you hold them? I understand you’re you’ve got three different branches of Ctrip. How does that kind of work? What is your typical monthly schedule kind of look like?
Ed Matthews [00:03:40] So it’s getting more interesting by the day, right? So typically, we have a monthly meeting here in central Connecticut that is the third Monday. We do the third Tuesday for Fairfield County, and we’re actually launching New London County in a little bit. But so that those are the primary meetings. And then throughout the month we do coaching meetings, we’re meeting, we’re doing workshops. In fact, we do a kind of an introductory workshop basically every Wednesday night at our training center in Weathers field to help with helping people figure out his real estate investing for you. And so we’ll kind of take him through at a high level what the what the opportunities are that we see here in Connecticut and frankly, elsewhere, some of us, me included, invest out of state as well. So those and then also will bring in speakers so folks from the commercial mortgage insurance as well as accounting legal experts. And so, you know, we’re trying to fill our calendar and serve our membership so that you know that when someone raise their hand and says, I’m ready, we’ve got quite a bit of resources that they can. They can access a menu available of different
Dave Dubeau [00:04:50] experts and resources. That’s fantastic. That’s one of the as I’m interviewing other directors from other CEOs all across the country. That’s kind of the big what are the huge benefit of area is having a one stop shop. For your local investors, you
Ed Matthews [00:05:08] can create absolutely power team pretty
Dave Dubeau [00:05:10] much instantaneously, you can vet people, you can ask for recommendations, other folks that are actively doing what you’re doing or want to do. Just saved so much time, effort and energy, that’s for sure.
Ed Matthews [00:05:22] Without a doubt. I mean, attending one meeting, you can meet your attorney, your accountant, the next contractor you’re going to be working with. You can then speak to two or three people at that meeting who have already, you know, known and worked with the people that you’re currently vetting. So you’re spot on and obviously you can find partners there. You can find mentors there. It’s a tremendous opportunity.
Dave Dubeau [00:05:45] Yeah, most definitely. So how long have you been part of the CTU? How long have you been a member and then actively involved in the organization, actually?
Ed Matthews [00:05:55] So I go back as a member, probably about 10 years, and so I was kind of flattering in and out of the universe when Linda and Joanne were running it. You know, Linda Baumgarten has been a just an unbelievably generous mentor over the years. And then back in 2018. Linda and Joanne kind of quietly made it known to my partner, Ron, that they were thinking about retiring. It had been more than a decade, and that’s it’s a lot of work, right? And so Ron then built the team and Mark Valente and I joined and then our latest partner, Rich Brown, joined about six eight months ago.
Dave Dubeau [00:06:33] Not so nice. Yeah. Now, one of the best things I always like to ask people in these interviews is what have been some of the because I always want to encourage people that are part of other ideas or thinking about getting into areas not just to be a passive member, but to take a more active role in their club or their association or their meetup or what have you. What has been some of the benefits for you taking that more active role? What kind of benefits have you seen from that stepping up interpreter?
Ed Matthews [00:07:04] in terms of benefits for me or benefits for the other people?
Dave Dubeau [00:07:07] No benefits for you, benefits for you? Or what do you see as benefits for people to take a more active role within their RIA?
Ed Matthews [00:07:13] I got to tell you, I have been very fortunate to have met both mostly within city area, but also outside some really generous people who have kind of recognized that I needed help and I wasn’t the smartest person in the room. And that took pity upon me in some cases and threw an arm around me and others saw that, you know, I needed a little bit of guidance. And so, you know, whether it’s a run for actually being one of them, right? When Ron and I met, I was just trying to figure out how to move from being a rehab or to a multifamily owner. And you know, his tutelage is what really got me involved. So I find that for me, being able to give back to folks when I’m, you know, we’re all reading the same book, but I may be a couple of chapters ahead of you, right? And you know, thank you. And you know, so I’m able to help. Those folks, when they come to me and say, Hey, how would you handle this deal? I mean, yesterday I was talking with a guy that I’ve been working with Nick. And, you know, absolutely brilliant, really high energy guy just wants to get it done. And you know, he’s a really impressive guy. And, you know, we talked about a couple of different deals and one of them we talked through and he found a winner. And, you know, we talked through that, you know, two or three ways that he can get this to profitability and even a couple of exit strategies if he decides to sell it. And then there was one. So in the state of Connecticut, we had a few years ago a really big problem with foundations crumbling. And so there’s governments involved and there’s a big insurance pool and it’s really become a disaster. And he found one of those properties. And we talked about the 97 ways that that could go sideways on him and if he’s OK with those 97 ways to do the deal. But if you’re not, don’t and if it were me, I’d be running the other way. But yeah, no, it’s just tremendously gratifying to be able to pay it forward. And, you know, with the with the hope that those folks do it for somebody else. You know, five, 10 years down the road.
Dave Dubeau [00:09:10] Very, very, very good. So what else is he going to ask you, right? So we talked about the pandemic and I guess. Oh yeah. Here’s what I want to say. So I would imagine with the size of your organization and the reach that you guys have got, have you got a lot of people, you know, now that you’ve got the whole Zoom thing completely dialed in, do you have a lot of people from out of state now attending your meetings and kind of finding out more about the local market that way?
Ed Matthews [00:09:37] So we do definitely see some people from Westchester County and Long Island. We’ve created a just a really strong relationship with Melissa Shay and her team over in Long Island. We’re now starting to see folks from southern Massachusetts coming our way as well. And so that is really interesting because, you know, from a market perspective, even though, say, a Hartford and a Springfield, Mass. Are only 30 miles apart, they’re, you know, they’re diametrically different markets. And so for a whole bunch of different reasons, just the activity of the investor community, the laws and costs of doing business in those different in the different states and a whole bunch of other reasons. But yeah, we’re definitely starting to see that not as much from Rhode Island and Connecticut. But like I said earlier, we’re pretty early on with our rollout of New London County.
Dave Dubeau [00:10:25] So that’s wonderful. Yeah. Well, it sounds like you guys have got great things going and hats off to you for making that pivot so quickly and switching to this, this new reality that we’re all in. And what are you guys going to be kind of moving ahead? Or are you going to be doing live events again? Are you doing live events? Are you getting a hybrid? What are your plans for 2022?
Ed Matthews [00:10:48] Yeah, great question. So we are still actively running our meetings. We started meeting live again in June. That’s when the when Connecticut started to lift. And unfortunately, we live in Connecticut and it’s the most highly vaccinated state. And you know, our rates are probably the lowest in the country, separate from the politics part of it. Just the fact, right? And so we started meeting in June. We also reengaged our live coaching in June, and then we are now in the process of also rolling out video versions of that training. And we’re launching we’re going to be launching an affiliate program to work with all the other players who are interested in helping their members also mentor and coach their members up so that they can. They do can engage in this wonderful game.
Dave Dubeau [00:11:35] Yeah. Excellent. So and if people want to find out more about the area and what you guys are up to and perhaps attend a meeting or in person or online which they do, yeah.
Ed Matthews [00:11:47] So best way to get a hold of us is through our website CCTS Re-accommodate. Our Viacom can also call our office eight six zero two six five four one four. Give us a call and we’re more than happy to help you in any way we can.
Dave Dubeau [00:12:01] Awesome. Has been a real pleasure. Thank you very much for your insights.
Ed Matthews [00:12:05] Yeah, my pleasure. Thanks, Dave.
Dave Dubeau [00:12:07] Andre, take care will see you on the next episode. Thanks for tuning into this special Spotlight episode now. If you’re a real estate investor and you’re looking to find private money partners and raise capital for your deals, then check out Money Partner Formula Dot Com, you get a free copy of my book. You can find out how to raise six figures or more in six weeks or less. Again, that’s money partner formula dot com.