Real estate investment is the best way to achieve true financial freedom. If you’re just getting started or have been in the field for a while but know you could be doing more, consider attending one of the best real estate investing conferences available.
Why a Conference?
Changes in the housing industry move quickly, and 2020 is shaping up to be an especially volatile year. Add to that the reality that the market varies significantly from state to state and even city to city, and it’s clear why it’s important to stay on top of new industry trends and keep your network healthy and growing. No investor can possibly make it to every conference, and there are some out there that are little more than scams. To stay ahead, consider attending one (or even more) of the proven best real estate investing conferences offered this year.
5 Best Real Estate Investing Conferences
1. Meet the Masters
If you only have time for one of the best real estate investing conferences this year, make it Meet the Masters (originally planned to take place in San Diego in May, but is postponed due to the Coronavirus). This conference is strategically planned to help individual investors who want to build their real estate portfolios for a better retirement or achieve financial freedom through ditching a corporate job. This conference aims not to give you a fish but to teach you how to fish for yourself.
What to Look for
Meet the Masters is about optimism and how to adapt to changes in market trends or policies rather than suffer from them. Previous conferences have covered property financing, insurance for property investors, how to set goals that work, strategies for protecting assets and saving on taxes, and the best software for real estate property investors. Expect the conference to also provide in-depth insight through market profiles of key cities across the nation.
2. CRE Finance Council Conference
If you can get to New York from June 8-10, don’t miss the CRE Finance Council’s conference. They always cover key topics facing the industry, like government fiscal policy and changes in consumer trends. While this conference isn’t limited to real estate investment per se, it’s especially valuable for realty investors looking to aggressively grow their portfolio and become tomorrow’s leaders.
What to Look for
In 2019, the conference saw 1200 attendees representing more than 500 companies. There are discounts available for younger investors under 30. Those who sign up early can also get CLE (Continuing Legal Education) credits. Look for the conference to focus, especially on the financial aspects of investment and real estate portfolio growth.
The CRE Finance Council is dedicated to the commercial real estate finance industry and looks to be a leader for establishing industry best practices as well as influencing federal policies.
3. ICSC Retail Conference
If you’re interested in commercial investment properties, the International Council of Shopping Centers’ RECon conference from May 17-19 in Las Vegas is worth considering. The ICSC regularly holds regional conferences that provide some good information and excellent networking opportunities for anyone interested in this type of investment.
What to Look for
This year’s conference will offer special insight into the fastest-growing tenant classes in the industry, which are health and wellness and cannabis retailers, as well as insight into how tech innovations are changing retail and how that affects the investor.
One of the best things about the ICSC is their continuing mission to get the retail real estate industry-recognized for its value. The industry plays a key role in social and economic health in every community around the world, and the ISCS is committed to building communities and promoting strong, healthy economies everywhere they’re represented.
4. The Multifamily Forum
The IPA Multifamily Forums are held annually and feature experts in the apartment real estate industry. These are locally focused, so attending one means you get special insight into the latest trends in that area rather than a national view. The next one for this year will be held in Los Angeles on June 4. These are one-day conferences that offer the opportunity to connect and grow your network while getting valuable market information.
What to Look for
Look for the conference to address trends in urban and suburban rentals in the area, changes in markets, and how rent control legislation affects an area (if it does). The LA forum will also be considering how the presidential election impacts the sector, which cities in Southern California are doing best right now, how much you should be spending to rehab a unit, and the way co-living is changing the California market.
These forums are hosted by Marcus & Millichap, the nation’s largest commercial real estate brokerage firm and advisors in the field.
5. ULI Meetings
The ULI fall meeting in San Francisco from Oct 12-15 involves every conceivable sector of the real estate industry. They strive to have something for everyone, including academics, attorneys, policymakers, investors, brokers, and even architects. They bring in more than 6,500 leaders from all sectors and offer good networking opportunities as well as tours of what they consider to be groundbreaking projects.
What to Look for
The scope of the meetings is their strong point and their biggest weakness. If you’re looking for a networking opportunity or to keep your finger on the pulse of larger trends, this could be a valuable conference. However, be aware that the sheer amount of information might be overwhelming if you don’t go into it knowing what you’re looking for. And expect breadth more than depth, though there will be exceptions in individual areas. The previous year’s conference had a special focus on increasing affordable housing and improving sustainability. While there is a lot of information available here, it’s important to note that the focus of ULI and these conferences aren’t for the individual investor but larger community issues. Again, if you go in with an idea of what you’d like to learn and where you’d like to improve your connections, this could be a valuable conference for you.
The Urban Land Institute (ULI) is a 501(c) (3) research organization with more than 40,000 worldwide members. Their mission is to provide leadership in building sustainable worldwide communities and explore issues ranging from capital formation to conservation.