Video: Property spruikers' seminars investigated
Video about an investigation into property
Annabel Hennessy, Journalist: During the
course of my investigation into the seminars I had to do a number
of bizarre group activities. I had to put my hand through a
block of wood, imagine I was at my own funeral, give massages to
fellow attendees, chant and dance to ramp up my emotions.
I would define a property spruiker as someone who uses excessive
emotional manipulation when they're trying to advertise something
in relation to property or property investment.
A lot of it would be to talk personal stories about how this
person had made all this money through property investment.
Some of the testimonials I noticed came from people who worked
for the company or were affiliated with the company but then in the
way the testimonials were presented they didn't always disclose
that they were employed by the companies.
They didn't mention how much debt these people were in which I
think is something that's very important.
You'd slowly begin to feel somewhat worn down. That's when the
sales contracts would come out.
Often the sales contracts too would have special deals where you
could sign now and get 50 per cent off or, on one seminar I went
to, you could get a $10,000 discount on their education course --
but only if you signed up during the lunch break so that people
were feeling a lot of time pressure.
And think a lot of the people who were there thought they were
there for this free day were they would learn stuff not realising
that most of the day was in fact a sales pitch.
Ask yourself why is this free and where are they earning their
money? Some of them they are earning their money in the form of
educational courses and then others are earning commissions from
I spoke to a number of people who had being burnt by property
spruikers as part of my research, and the thing was it had
longstanding ramifications upon their lives. Many of them had
bought into these investments schemes or bought these investment
properties with the idea it would help them for their retirement.
Very tragically many of them actually had lost their own homes or
were in the process of losing their own homes because these
investments hadn't worked.
My advice to anyone would be remember these are sales people,
they're not just giving you advice from the goodness of their heart
so whenever you go in there go in with research and go in informed.
Be very cautious of the fact they'll tell you they're all about
creating wealth but more often than not it's just about creating
Last updated: 15 Aug 2016