New "Code of Ethics" for the Site and Investment Club
Many financial sites and investment clubs suffer from significant conflicts of interest that compromise their neutrality, integrity and usefulness. Today, I'm legally binding myself to a code that formalizes what I've done to make this site and club very different.
(Usual disclaimer: I'm just an investor and not a financial advisor, attorney or accountant. Consult your own financial professional before making any financial decisions). The Real Estate Crowdfunding Review site had a record month in March and exploded to over 9,000+ visitors. Since there's a lot of newcomers, I'm getting a lot of the same kinds of questions:
How can the site and club be free?
"Are you paid by any of the platforms and sponsors for anything you do on the site (or in the investor club)"?
"I left investor club X / site Y because of a conflict of interest. How does your club / site work?"
These are great questions because most financial sites and clubs generate revenue in ways that cause conflicts-of-interest. And many investors are justifiably concerned that information from such sources isn't neutral, trustworthy, ethical or useful. This site and club are run differently. I'm a retired entrepreneur, who started this because I wanted a hobby that's a lot more interesting than golf. I don't have a bunch of VCs or angel investors breathing down my neck to monetize the users in some short-term way that would hurt the site's integrity and reputation. And if the site shuts down tomorrow, I would be very disappointed. But I wouldn't exactly be eating Ramen noodles for the rest of my life. Lots of sponsors and platforms have tried to offer me money for everything from referring investors of them, to talking about them, to letting them post slanted opinion pieces, to advertising. But I've turned then all down. And now, with all the new growth, I realize that there are many people who aren't familiar with me personally, and that it's time to formalize this commitment legally. So as of today, the new terms of service include a code of ethics that I have legally bound myself to. Per the code:
No money will ever be accepted from an investment sponsor or platform