Adventures In Cash Flow

Where this entrepreneur explores the world of cash flow and her attempts to make money in it.

Thursday, June 30, 2005

Making Progress

I have been making a little progress. I did get press release done today and they should go out tomorrow along with letters to my bankers. I thought it would be a good idea to give them a heads up so there is no conflict of interest concerns. I figured out how to do the mail merge and started create the first database. And I started on the business card.
The discouraging part is I tried working with the financial calculator. Except for the basic calc, I had forgotten how to do them. So I will have to do a cheat sheet until they become second nature.
Two steps forward, one step back.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005


I did check out the legal section of the ACFA web site. It looks like lottery winning might not be available and that there may be a registration fee for settlements. But that will let me get started with note. I need to check on letterhead so I can start sending out letters.
I did find some other info and will take it with me on workshop.

Monday, June 20, 2005

Finally got in

I finally got to login to the member's section of the ACFA web site. The promised info is all there plus something that was never mentioned, a legal section. So I will have to do some studying to make sure I am not doing anything illegal.
I do think it's funny that this info was never mentioned before. Were they afraid they would scare people off?

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Web site

As I go through all the materials from the training session, I have also started putting together the marketing materials. I would like to mail stuff off by the end of the month. I have also registered a domain name, and the basics of the site is coming together. The graphics I found are fun and colorful. I refuse to have my web site look like all those boring site ACFA does.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Login error

As part of my membership/whatever with ACFA, I have access to a special part of their web site. At the end of training, Tina gave us the information on our login name and password. Her slide said it would be availible on Thursday, but she said Wednesday. Not a problem. But yesterday (Tuesday) I got an e-mail from the company president. Beside the welcoming stuff, it gave me the login and password info and I could get in now. Nope! I still can't get in. I will give it more time, but it makes you wonder if this is what I can expect.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005


Overall, I am happy with the course. I now need to get the web site started so that I can send out letters and postcard making the announcement. I also need to go over the info work out some tools to help me keep track of everything.

The Sales Pitch

Every training has a down side. I expected a motivation outlook to much of the weekend and for my back to hurt from the seating. I got what I expected. I was blown away by the blatant attempt to force feed us the Cash Flow Pro. This is what they used to call Web Partners, their web site design group. This had been expanded to add management tools. It is a lot of small pieces anchored in the web site development.
Like any sales pitch, the product was rolled out and showed off. You have to have it right? They they got to the price. The Total for all the piece if sold separately is over $10,000. But if you got it at the training you could have it for $3995, the same price as the course. That is the listed cost of the web site tool, they are giving you the rest of the stuff.
Part of the promo on this was how much you will spend on a web site. Of course they used from their experience several years ago in two of the most expensive parts of the country. What got me mad was how bad the sites are.
The pitch was on Saturday afternoon and purchase at lunch on Sun. I went back to the hotel and did some checking. The sites do not validate both CSS and HTML. Not the main site(ACFC) or the "banner ad" site that were built by them. Only one site validated CSS and none HTML. They are all the bland business site with no personality.
Part of the deal is site submission to seach engines. In one case, goggling their business name did not bring them up until the middle of the 2nd page. The instructor pushing this was very excited about his web site that was build through this program. But a search on google or yahoo does not bring up his site. Not acceptable for that money.
I only think a few people signed up and I hope the rest of the tools are work the cost.


I mentioned in an earlier post about the 25# of materials. I don't think I was far off. When you signed in you got a tote with the reference materials. A 6" loose leaf binder: full. This is were all the different income streams are discussed. There is also basic business, marketing and finacial information. We were told we could leave that at home for the rest of the class. Most of the class was done out of the workbook. All of the powerpoint slide were duplicated in the book with note space beside it. The actual class info was only about half the book, the rest was marketing and how to do the calculations needed. Also the first day I got a financial calculator. I didn't use it until Saturday but I need the time to get it opened.
There were lots of times when we would go to break and come back to find little gifts left for us. The book of worksheets or the class on CD.
All of the materials are well thought out and quality materials are used. I was surprised that the only logoed thing we received was the CD case with the class lectures on it. ACFC/I/A did not had out a bunch of promo things. The hotel left a pen and pad at our places every day but there was no silly trinkets not wasted money. While getting those kind of things are fun, I liked that they did not waste money on them and spent the money on the stuff I would use.

The Class

I survived and I plan on doing Cash Flow.
My intention had been to blog every evening after class but I didn't get it done. If this post gets too long, I will split it into several posts so you may have to read out of order.
The class was taught at the Doubletree Hotel in Olatha/Lenexa/KC. There were about 30 people in the class, the two instructors, and the site coordinator. Tina was the one who gave out the materials, dealt with the hotel.. very nice lady. The two instructors were Kerry Lucus who did everything but the factoring info. Factoring was handled by Ernie Brown. Ernie was a big man from the Boston area and was raised in my father's home town of Medford MA. We had a nice visit about that. Kerry's main area is RE notes and that type of thing. He was also the cheerleader for CF and handled the setting up a business stuff.
The other participants were all very different. At the end, we exchanged e-mail address so we can keep in touch. We also got a presentation from the KC chapter of ACFA consultants. Their meeting is when I will be in KC for a tax workshop so I may go. As I understand it, they are trying to get a chapter going in Wichita.
I left with brain overload. The class was organized and well presented. They could not have put any more info in those three days. What I got was the basics of the two main ways deals happen. The specifics are in the materials I left with.

Thursday, June 09, 2005


I am in KC tonight. The training begins at 9am tomorrow. There is no way I was going to drive up in the morning. I want to go over the materials again and make sure I have everything in my purse for tomorrow. I want at least one good pen and highlighted. I was never contacted by the student rep so I expect something to be wrong tomorrow.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

A lull

I didn't do much on cash flow today. I had work to do. I did check outcash flow on e-bay. Lots of other couses but none from ACFI. I did get an idea, I can always write my own book and sell on ebay.

Monday, June 06, 2005

The Competition

I have found a lot of others selling or giving away courses. (One A. mentioned when I was asking my questions. And I just saw his infomercial. His course in much cheaper but it is all self-study.) The trick was using not just cash flow but notes, receivables, factoring..., as the seach term. One course did turn out to be a very strange ad for Viagra. There is another free course that I signed up for. I figure that any other point of view will help.
The little guys really don't like ACFI. I am sure part of it is the amount they are charging for the class. They all site the same problems with the self-rationalization that their program is better, I can't compare right now. But I did not find a bunch of problems. But I will give ACFI the first day.


Now the fun begins!
Before I looked at the materials A. gave me, I started checking out ACFI and the cash flow/note/factoring industries on the internet. Actually, A. mentioned one problem I might find. A cease order that had been rescinded.
It seems that a lot of cash flow players are interconnected. The "association" that will be certifying me at the end of the course, is part of the same organization that is teaching, and offers the "trade" journal and annual convention. They were all created by a man who was involved with a previous cash flow company and ran into a little trouble with that company. He is not listed as a part of ACFI/A/C. Their web site and the materials given to me list a bunch a possible instructors. All are acting in this industry and only teach part time "since the have successful businesses of their own". I expect that a lot of the companies owned by these guys will end up as funding sources.
Quick fact, all of the possible instructors are male. There is a little bit of a boy's club going on. There are women but they are doing the calls and set up.
Speaking of calls, I got a call the day after the workshop thanking me for attending and "I could still enroll". It seems since I did not sign up right after the workshop I attended, I got put in "no" pile and A did not pull my registration out when I did sign up. That and my "student coordinator" can't get my phone number right to return my call makes me wonder how organized this weekend will be.

The Decision

After leaving the workshop, I thought about what I had heard and whether it made sense to me. I know that there is a lot of hype and that most people will not make money doing it. It is a complicated field but so is what I do all the time. And there is some overlap. The deciding factor, besides figuring out the money issue, was the guarantee. Besides the normal 3 day buyer's regret guarantee they are required to offer, ACFI lets you opt-out up until the end of the first day of the training. Friday evening I can say no thanks and get my money back. All I will be out is the travel expenses.
But I had a bunch of questions. So I went back to the evening workshop session. Once they got started, I cornered A. for about 30 minutes and got my questions answered. When I left, I was even poorer and had a folder of info to go over before the first day of class.

The workshop

Next step is attending the free workshop. Not a problem to get away, but before I go I hit the internet and find ACFI's web site. I almost change my plans. The web site is professional looking and very straight forward. One of the things it tells you is how much the course costs. WOW! I almost back out. There is no way I am going to spend that much money. But I go anyway, don't ask me why.
Fancy hotel and three handsome men at the sign in desk. But you can't go in yet. The course materials are on display and they must weigh 25 lbs. Finally, we are allowed in and the show begins. The speaker is P. attending he is another good looking man (in fact, they all fit the same general discription except for hair color).
The presentation is the usual mix of facts, motivation, and disclaimer and at the end the payment options are outlined. You are buying a three day, 25+ hour seminar to be given in a little over a week (and the 25# of materials). I am interested but unlike many of the other participants, I want time to think and see if I can come up with the money. I do find out that this procedure is repeated every 3 months, but "Trish, don't delay your future to long."
I leave

Yes, I am one of those people!

Yes, I answered an infomercial. Not the first time, but the other times were all for things and I had seen the infomercials alots of times. Last weekend (Memorial), I came across an informercial for American Cash Flow Insititute. I had seen it and others like it before but I always landed on them when they were talking about real estate. Not interested. This time they were talking about factoring accounts receiveables and that made sense. There was a free work shop scheduled nearby so I planned on going.
This blog is about my impressions, decisions, training, and money making adventures.