Here’s Why You Shouldn’t Miss Philly’s First-Ever Real Estate Week
The celebration of the city's real estate community brings the heavy hitters together with the newbies to help everyone from first-time homebuyers to experienced investors up their game.
What could possibly be better than success?
How about a week that celebrates success and gives people the tools they need to make it in the hottest game in town?
That’s the aim of the first-ever Philly Real Estate Week (PREW), which kicks off this coming Monday (June 4th) with a look at the city’s future landscape, courtesy the Philadelphia City Planning Commission.
Five days of real estate (and beer)
The noonday panel on the “Philadelphia 2035” comprehensive plan, now in its final stages, sets the stage for five days of discussions, workshops and events aimed at anyone and everyone who’s interested in learning more about the real estate business.
(Or even beer. Even though it’s not connected with the concurrent Philly Beer Week, PREW’s opening-day activities include a Monday-evening reception in which Planning Commission staff will discuss “The Geography of Beer” — the historic role breweries and distilleries played in the city’s neighborhoods, how these institutions can serve as anchors for neighborhoods today, how old breweries can be given new life and how to make beer gardens grow on vacant lots.)
Each day’s events are organized around a theme. Monday focuses on city planning issues. Tuesday is for people looking to buy a home of their own. Wednesday’s events are aimed at those who want to get started as real estate investors. Thursday’s events will help those already in the game learn more about the business, and Friday’s day-long “Wholesalers and Realtors Bootcamp” aims to help sales professionals make bigger and better deals.
Heavy-hitting advice from the pros
The event organizers at the Better Than Success Real Estate League have put together an all-star lineup that includes both some of the best-known names in development and real estate hereabouts and a number of rising stars to serve as speakers and presenters. Participants include:
- Bart Blatstein, president and CEO, Tower Investments
- Allan Domb, City Councilman-at-Large and owner, Allan Domb Real Estate
- Nicole Purvy, real estate investor and author of “The Anti-Hustle: Start a Six-Figure Business in One Year”
- Lindsey Scannapieco, co-founder and managing partner, Scout
- Leslie Smallwood-Lewis, co-founder, Mosaic Development Partners
- Chris Somers, co-owner and team leader, RE/MAX Access and incoming president, Greater Philadelphia Association of Realtors
- Ken Weinstein, president, Philly Office Retail and originator of the Jumpstart development training program
The company Purvy founded four years ago, now known as Better Than Success, has served as the proving ground for this celebration. Located in Kensington, BTS serves as an incubator and resource for entrepreneurs, providing them with media services, education and information that can help them grow their businesses. One of its most active incubators is the BTS Real Estate League, a support and networking organization for startup real estate investors.
Established a little over a year and a half ago, the league has grown in size to 150 members — “we’re probably one of the largest real estate clubs in the city and the fastest-growing,” Purvy says. (It also reflects the changing face and future of real estate: more than 95 percent of its members are African-American.)
In its first year, the league organized both the boot camp and a “Women in Real Estate Summit” to expose members to others who have already established themselves in the field. Both of these events have been incorporated into this year’s PREW calendar.
Information, resources and even matchmaking
Purvy says that she got the idea for the week-long real estate celebration from listening to league members. “After running the club for a year and a half, I noticed we had a lot of growth. And because I try to make sure I know our members and what their motivations are, I know what drives [their interest in the club], and at the end of the day, it’s lack of resources.” (Presenter BTS Funding, a Better Than Success offshoot, offers one of those resources.)
The aim of this event, Purvy says, is to call attention to those resources and connect people to them. She also seeks “to bridge the information gap between some of the big real estate players here and some of the smaller ones.”
Issues the conference will address include legal matters such as establishing clear title, credit and financing for first-time homebuyers, and how to analyze local real estate markets and potential deals. There will also be a “speed dating” networking session where fledgling investors can hook up with business partners to form mutually beneficial relationships.
“We have Philly Tech Week. We have Restaurant Week. We have Philly Fashion Week. Why not a Real Estate Week?” Purvy says.
Well, someone’s gotta make it happen. These folks did it.
Information, registration and tickets for all Philly Real Estate Week events can be obtained at the Philly Real Estate Week website. Most of the events are free. Some of the events (including “The Geography of Beer”) have already sold out, but check the site in case additional tickets become available. A portion of the proceeds from Thursday evening’s “Philly Wealth Builders Summit” will benefit the Nicetown Community Development Corporation.
Updated May 30, 10:29 a.m., to correctly identify the event organizer.