An Inside Look At Networking To Find Passive Investors for Multifamily Syndication


How can you successfully use networking to find passive investors?

Let’s start with a case study.

Case Study:  Joe’s surprising discovery about where his investment capital came from

Joe noticed something surprising about where his investment funds were coming from.

He had investors from all over, but he found that a disproportionately high percentage of his investment dollars came from his home base, even though he hadn’t lived there very long.  Why?

Before I answer that question, I’ll fill in a few details.

Joe Fairless, the co-founder of Ashcroft Capital, with over $900,000,000 of capital under management, analyzed the location of the top contributors to his multifamily deals.

Joe’s top 5 Cities with percentage of investment dollars in deals were:

  • New York City: 18%
  • Cincinnati: 13%
  • Dallas-Fort Worth: 11%
  • Miami: 7%
  • San Francisco: 6%

Why was Cincinnati so surprising?

Cincinnati wasn’t a top 5 city of his in terms of total number of investors. And only 3.5 percent of his current investors lived there.

Joe is not from Cincinnati and he had only lived there for a few years. So, why did it represent 13 percent of all the equity invested in his apartment deals? 

The answer: He had become actively involved in the local community. And…

That activity included hosting a local meet-up.

It’s incredible that such a high percentage of those investment dollars were coming from that one city and it shows the power of being active in the local community and the power of hosting a regular meet-up.


How to get the most from networking events / opportunities

But how can you network like a professional at these events? Here, I’m sharing my conversation with Director of Investor Relations at Ashcroft Capital, Travis Watts. You’ll take away clear answers to that question as well as the following:

Question #1 How to choose the right live event to attend for networking opportunities?

Question #2 What you can expect from these events depending on the ticket price?

Question #3 How many conversations does it take to find one investor?

Get The Free Investor Networking Resource Guide.


Build your network – get access to commercial real estate meetup groups around the world and the ones near you.


Attend networking events – get a list of upcoming multifamily events.


Network on the go – get an app that connects you with other investors and professionals, right from your phone. 


Network online – learn how to effectively use BiggerPockets.

Host A Local Meet-Up

Meetups (especially if you’re the one hosting) can get you deals and get you passive investment dollars.

Being the organizer of the event is a big advantage because not only do you control the format but you are also the connector between all these different individuals. The fact is when you help people get what they want, you end up getting what you want.

As the organizer and host you are viewed as an expert and the authority.  People respect and trust you. Trust is the biggest factor in people making the leap to invest their money with you.

Keep in mind that meet-ups can be held virtually via Zoom or they can be hosted at a location that can accommodate social distancing.

A meet-up group can be formal or informal. The lack of a great location is not a deal-breaker. Most successful meet-ups started out with just a meeting in the park, or at a local bar or restaurant.

Promote your event by posting the meetup in the BiggerPockets events section. You can also create an event on Facebook.

If your event is formal, you could have a program of activity. If it is informal, it can just be an open floor networking opportunity.

If you go with a more formal program then you could include some kind of presentation at the start from a guest speaker. You could also include a section of the program for attendees to share deals with the group. Some meet-ups give an opportunity for attendees to let the group know what professional connections they need.  It could be anything from a plumber to a real estate attorney.

Attend A Local Real Estate Meetup or Multifamily Conference

The next best thing to hosting your own event is to attend one hosted by someone else. 

Here are 5 great tips to get the most out of your networking experience at an event.


1:  Be approachable

The power of a welcoming smile can’t be overstated. When you add to this a genuine interest in others and a willingness to listen you are off to a great start.

2:  Prepare your elevator pitch

How ready are you to give an effective answer when people ask you about your investor niche? An ‘Elevator Pitch’ describes an answer that is brief enough to be delivered in the course of a 30-second elevator ride.

3:  Don’t look at every new connection as a dollar sign

Give people a chance to get to know you, to build a relationship and to build trust. Building an investor network requires patience. Play the long game.

4:  Do your research ahead of the event

Who will be attending? Learn something about these individuals ahead of time so that you will easily be able to strike up a conversation and establish rapport.


Network on the go – get an app that connects you with other investors and professionals, right from your phone. 

5:  Follow up after the event

Keep a note of who you’ve met and what you spoke about. After the event, send the people you met a brief, “great to meet you,” message. Try to keep in regular contact.

Next week I will be sharing an interview with an expert on networking at multifamily events and he will be sharing lots more great tips including how to choose the right event to attend.


Attend Virtual Multifamily Conferences Meetups & Events

Now, many multifamily conferences are going virtual. Networking is not exactly the same as at live events but the opportunity is still there.

Many virtual event organizers will implement measures to maximize online networking opportunities and try to replicate the experience of an in person networking event, such as:


  • Virtual coffee breaks, lunch hour break rooms and happy hour virtual rooms.
  • Creating opportunities for attendees to network with other attendees and exhibitors based on topic and mutual interests.
  • Contact info of other attendees is shared and there is also opportunity to engage and connect with others in the lead up to the event.


Many events use an event management software like Whova which can facilitate networking opportunities.

According to their website the Whova event management software can help event organizers to,

“Maximize Attendee Virtual Networking Opportunities and Community Building, with the help of all kinds of technology bells and whistles such as, “an active community board to discuss common topics and share photos, articles and tips and a virtual business card exchange to enable future communication.”

From a relationship-building standpoint, hosting a local meet-up, or attending a live or virtual event can be an incredible boost to the growth of your investor base.

Get The Free Investor Networking Resource Guide.


Build your network – get access to commercial real estate meetup groups around the world and the ones near you.


Attend networking events – get a list of upcoming multifamily events.


Network online – learn how to effectively use BiggerPockets.

Expecting to find passive investors without networking would be like expecting to go swimming without getting wet, you can’t have one without the other.

If you are hosting your own event or networking at other events you will be making connections and establishing rapport with those you meet. What is the next step for those individuals? They will want to check out your website.

Will they find the same professional image when they go to your website that they got from networking with you in person or at an online event? Does your website enhance your credibility as a multifamily syndicator or detract from it?

Does your website make you seem like the Michael Phelps of the multifamily world? Or does it make you look like you are still wearing water wings?

To get your professional investor site up and running today visit