JG Banks Institute for Probate newby

Just graduated from it a few weeks ago and I was curious if anyone had ever been to it. And if so, any good or bad stories? Your input will help me to decide if I really want to pursue it. Thanks in advance.


Well how was the program itself? did you learn anything

Mine is tale of woe and misery.

Since I had initially started this post, I had decided not to pursue it and called to get a refund as I am barely 4 weeks out from graduation.

During our initial sales pitch from one of their free workshops, we were assured that we would have 6 months to get a refund. This is entirely untrue. When one reads the contract, their actual refund period is for 2 weeks from the signup date. The actual class started 10 days from when I had signed up and the class itself was 3 days long. So do the math. We were all screwed out of our refunds on the day we graduated. The 6 month deal was for something else entirely. It stated that if on your first purchase you don’t make back your tuition costs (which seems to vary from person to person, depending on who you ask) they will give you a refund, with the stipulation that you must provide various forms of documentation and return the training materials in good shape. However, we were instructed to take notes and write up in the books as they were ours. Funny how they cover themselves there too.

Prior to this knowledge, I called the number graduates were supposed to call so that I could get a refund. This was a second attempt as the first time I called I was on hold so long that I finally was cued over to an answering machine. When no one returned my call, THAT was when I made this second attempt, where I was told that I had to call the Customer Service Dept. Once I called them, they placed me on hold for a very long time while they did some “research”. After several minutes of this, I was told that I would be transferred to yet a third dept. that handles refunds. I was then promptly hung up on.

Since then I have learned some very interesting things about Jim “J.G.” Banks and other Real Estate gurus from a very interesting website: http://www.johntreed.com/rateseminars.html
I HIGHLY suggest that anyone interested in taking any RE course do a little research at this site first.

I found the main workbook to be inadequate. It only showed slides - nothing that was a “how-to” in writing. You had to rely on your listening skills, a good memory, and even better note-taking skills. The rest of the training materials were good, but could use a little updating and additions, especially in the areas of providing you such information as Hard Money Lenders, RE Clubs, and other things. All they gave was just a small sampling. The training materials also seem to just trickle out to us on a daily basis, leaving the most important ones until last. I suspect this was also done as an attempt to keep people coming back to class, the refund period ticking away all the while.

I also found the instructors (one in particular) to be impatient, curt, and more interested in maintaining a schedule, rather than answer questions. Don’t get me wrong, they did answer a few, but when it came to some really tough questions, it was always easier to have us write them down and ask them (privately so that no one else could take advantage of the answers too) during the next break. They also used terminology, lingo, and basic RE concepts in such a way as they expected the novice to know them already.

The class was also too short. We needed (and many of us felt the same way) that we needed additional time, at least 1-2 more days.

The most important thing that they DON’T tell you during class is that the Probate lawyers (many of whom are also RE Investors) have already made deals with the Executor of the Estates, making it EXTREMELY difficult to make a deal with them, should the lawyer even decide to give you their contact information (Lawyer/Client priviledges, ya know).

Overall, a VERY disappointing experience. I do NOT recommend this to anyone.

To answer your question: Yes I unfortunately DID learn a few things. :frowning:

My two cents worth. I am interested in what anyone else experienced as well.


Thank you for coming out and talking about your experience and how some gurus are fake and which ones…

I’m sorry for your misfortune but DON’T refer ANYONE to John T. Reed. He “Does not Recommend” anyone but his mother and his dog. I have trouble believing anyone who must attack everyone else in the business in order to sell his own stuff.

What is particularly offensive about Reed is that he sometimes knows NOTHING about the person or program he is attacking. Here’s an example. He attacked Bill Gatten. Here is Bill’s point-by-point rebuttal. Please understand that in person Bill is one of the funniest people on the Planet and doesn’t take attack articles very seriously except this one went way over the top.


Best of luck to you.

Da Wiz

Granted, I do understand that Mr. Reed’s reputation among RE Investors is not the best and I did notice he was rather one-sided on most topics. I do agree with at least SOME of his assessments, however. I quickly learned what to listen to and what not to. His analysis of Banks was, of course, VERY accurate after my bad experience with his company. I did like Reed’s advice not to spend hundreds or thousands of dollars on ANY of those courses/seminars/programs, but rather purchase the book(s) by the author instead and save all kinds of money for the same information. Would I buy Reed’s books? I say nay. Again, better judgement prevails in that case. lol Thanks for the support.



I graduated in January but had to go out of the country soon. then got busy with million of other things… :frowning:

I just met another guy from the class and he is doing good in Inheritance Brokerage!!! :smiley:

Which state are you from?


Nevada. Inheritance brokering is the one thing I haven’t looked into yet. It does sound intriguing and I do have a few ideas about it, so perhaps all is not lost.


HI Robert,

Just found/read your email about JG Banks. I attended a free seminar in Chicago in March and was impressed with what I saw of his program. Our speaker talked about some online, updated software that seemed to be the jewels of the program. Plus, he was wanting to leverage his own success with the probate real estate by partnering with people that signed up for the program. My question is twofold. How valueable is the software. Did it help you find any true opportunities out there that you could close? And did anyone talk about partnering. The partnering deal that our guy talked about sounded pretty good. By the way, in our seminar he mention the 6 month return program too. He made it sound like if you just tried it and if didn’t work you could get a refund. But he did say that you REALLY had to attempt to do it. BTW thanks for posting your experience. I’m just wonder if there are / where are the people that have had good experiences.


Before I give my response/opinion, can you tell me who it was that mentioned the partnering thing?


Hi Robert,

Thanks for getting back to me. The guys name was Mark Gonsalves. He was even mentioned in the article on this site (see link http://www.nysun.com/article/30348). That why I was asking you about the partnering program. Also, how valuable was the data base of all the up to date probate deals?


Never heard of your Mark. My Mark (last name begins with M.) was one of our instructors, who worked the FL area heavily. But your Mark’s style and sales tactics sound strangely familiar. Our free seminar speaker (whose name was also Ed L.) was also “looking for a few good people” to partner with as well. Isn’t it funny how these guys are always “looking for a few good people” to partner up with? lol They must think we are pretty stupid or something. OF COURSE they are looking to hook up with other people’s deals to get at their split of the profits. It’s just another sales ploy outside of their speaker’s fees, mentoring fees, software packages, and any other little “extras” they can milk you for.

With only just a little effort you can deal ANYWHERE in the U.S. with the aid of helpers, like RE Agents, who will bend over backwards for you to get commissions from the deals you are gonna throw at them. Or you can even run an ad in the local paper for someone to be your runner, helper, representative, aid, helper (or whatever you want to call them) there.

Now as far as throwing Mark a bone or two to get his mentoring skills to use as a learning experience or confidence builder for you, then I think that would be alright as long as he actually teaches you something in the process. Otherwise, you would be better off doing it yourself.

Speaking of expensive software packages, my opinion about the Professional Probate Package is not to get it. Most of those things they mentioned about it, I could find for free on the internet. However, it is nice that it is all packaged in one place, so you don’t have to bounce around from site to site to get the info you need when analyzing properties. I don’t like the fact that it is similar to “pay-per-view” that you would find on Cable. Call me strange, but if I have to shell out that kinda money in the first place, it better damn well be included in the price and on an unlimited basis too. geez. Look at the total costs of EVERYTHING, including all their little extras, with them. Close to 10K!!! That’s ridiculous.

Market saturation in our area made us newcomers not very eager to go to the courts to look up the newest cases. Don’t kid yourself when they claim there is almost no competition for that kind of investing too. But don’t take my word for it. Just ask the clerks at your local courthouse. lol Speaking of newest cases, why were the trainers so ardent about only getting the newest ones? Isn’t it just as easy to build relationships with the PR’s of the older cases too? Logically, wouldn’t those older cases be even more motivated to get out of Probate?

I say don’t limit yourself with just probate. If you are a true RE Entrepeneuer, do it ALL. Probate, foreclosures, pre-foreclosures, government auctions, private auctions, FSBO’s, RE Agents, Bird Dogs, other investors, newspaper ads, door-to-door, ANYTHING you can get a hold of. I guess if you really want to do probate, I would watch out for the obituaries and try to get to them before the lawyers do. That is REALLY a tricky thing though. You have to be really REALLY tactful about approaching them so you don’t come off like a “vulture” swooping in for the kill, or an “ambulance chaser”. Maybe sending them a hand-written sympathy card, letting them know that you would really love to help them in their time of need and pain- to help make their transition as painless as possible? You can even splurge a little and send some flowers too. That would make you memorable, wouldn’t it? Maybe form some relationships with the local funeral homes in your area too? Offer to pay the Funeral Directors a referral fee for leads they can provide. Maybe $25/lead and $1000 for the ones that actually close? Make it contingent on complete and accurate information as to who the PR and heirs are as well as their addresses, phone numbers, etc… The heirs you can mail “granny letters” to, offering your services for inheritance funding. Just a few ideas that popped into my brain while I was responding to you. Maybe I shoulda patented them? :wink:

Anyway, I hope this answers your questions and helped you.