The Dark Forest Of Real Estate Investing

The Dark Forest

The term “Dark Forest” is from the eponymous book.  Liu Cixin published his science fiction book, “The Dark Forest” in 2008. The trilogy called “Remembrance of Earth’s Past” contains the sequel to the Hugo Award-winning book “The Three-Body Problem,” however Chinese readers typically refer to the series by the name of the first book.  The premise of the Dark Forest has its roots (pun intended) in the Fermi Paradox.  Famous physicist Enrico Fermi postulated that based on the number of stars (100-400 Billion) in the Milky Way Galaxy there must be thousands of habitable planets with intelligent beings.  “But where are they?” Fermi asked fellow physicists Edward Teller, Herbert York, and Emil Konopinski.

There have been numerous attempts to explain the Fermi Paradox, with the main theories being that intelligent extraterrestrial creatures are exceedingly rare, that the existence of such civilizations is fleeting, or that they exist but (for a variety of reasons) humans find no evidence of them. (Could they be hiding?) This means that even if many intelligent civilizations formed over the course of the universe, it is implausible that two of them would ever meet at cosmic time and space scales.

Now, the Dark Forest suggests that there are plenty of civilizations out there, but there are also a lot of predators looking for resources.  If a species broadcasts its location, predators will come and take all of their resources.  So, sometimes it’s just better to keep quiet and not attract attention. 

“What does this have to do with real estate?” you may ask.  Well, there are lots of underemployed lawyers or lawsuit-happy tenants out there (AKA, predators) looking for an easy kill.  For example, a real estate investor broadcasts how many properties they own.  No one needs to know this. These people are even foolish enough to allow their names to be found on county websites.  I’ve found lots of investors’ properties just by typing in their names.  If I can find you, so can a predator. 

What I strongly encourage investors to do is hide their assets.  Appear broke.  Put the asset into a Land Trust.  Then, make the beneficiary of the Land Trust a Limited Liability Company (LLC.)  You can hire an informed lawyer to do all of this for you, but at some expense.  My recommendation is to get Bill Bronchick’s course on Asset Protection at  If you use the code, legalwiz4u, you’ll get a 20% discount on any of Bill’s courses on Asset Protection. 

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