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This is the first update to my lifestyle series where I’ll detail monthly updates of a bunch of things that went down in my journey to build my wealth. Primarily I’ll be focusing on real estate investing and career updates.
Over the next 5 years I plan to acquire 25-100 rental properties/units and you’ll be able to follow along with these update reports if you stick around my blog or are just arriving years into my updates and looking back into my archives.
Who am I?
Currently, a 21 year old attending Ohio State University and majoring in Finance Investment Management. I’m also a real estate investor and bought my first property when I was 20. Let me share the story.
Shortly after turning 20 I set up a game plan to acquire my first property before I was 21. I got off track and lost faith that it would happen for much of the year. Finally, with a few months left until I was 21, I got serious again about getting my real estate investing career started and was able to close on a property 2 weeks before my birthday. It was a nice 21st birthday gift to myself.
While I’m 21, I plan to acquire another 1-4 units and would love to have 5 total if I’m able to get there in time. You’re probably asking “When is your birthday so that we can follow along how much time you have left to meet your goal?” and I’m happy to share: It’s August 10th and this update is coming to you November 24 so I have about 9 months left to get 1-4 units. I’m currently working with an investor so I’m optimistic we can find some deals soon.
A lot of it is mental at first, I’d make excuses like:
I’m too young for people to take me seriously
- I don’t have the money
- I don’t have a job so what if my property isn’t rented and I have monthly expenses
- What if I fail?
After growing confidence and deciding I can do this at such a young age and get ahead in life, I got serious asking people for help and taking action. I approached my dad and showed him my plan and said I want to find a property soon to buy and fix up and rent. Being a real estate agent, he got to work and showed me several until we found one to purchase.
We inherited a tenant and evicted them. This delayed repairs so once they moved out we began renovations. Here are several photos before renovations:
How about those piss stains from the tenants dog? I’ll have a no pet policy.
So as you can see we had some nice hardwood floors underneath the carpet in each room so we removed all the carpet. Then we had the hardwood floors refinished.
- Electrical got updated for around $2,000 and is up to code.
- 16 broken windows were replaced and painted.
- New laminate flooring in the back entry way
- Removed all the trash and junk
- Cleaned the mold out of the basement as well as some bats in hibernation
- Patched all the holes in the walls and sanded
I will be painting in the next few days and taking a video tour of the place once finished. Check update #2 for the results.
This is why I like real estate. Finding properties in distressed conditions and fixing them up to look great again. It’s a skill set to develop and grow over time and I’ll have a lot of fun doing future projects after getting basic knowledge out of the way with this first one.
This isn’t my first rodeo with real estate.
I grew up helping fix up rentals for my dad that he owned as well as going on lots of showings as a kid. My mowing business even got started from all the rentals I would mow as a teen. But now I understand processes and aspects of real estate a lot better than when I was younger so everything we’re doing now is easy to understand and manage.
I didn’t have much investment knowledge of real estate until I was 20 and started learning about it online over my summer home from college. As I mentioned above, I spent about 9 months educating before I finally got back out there and found a property. I initially tried getting a property in month 1 without much knowledge. I was scared to not take action because I’ve read the stories of analysis paralysis where people learn and learn and learn and never take action and continue using the learning as an excuse to not get started. A lot of the learning comes from real life experience:
- Talking to realtors
- Talking to investors
- Talking to mentors
- Going on showings to see properties
- Taking a contractor along to see how they estimate repairs during the showings
- Driving through neighborhoods looking for properties not listed for sale that are run down condition
If you’re on the fence about real estate investing, realize you just got to get started and everything will be okay. You’ll realize a lot of it is mental and you’ll find confidence once things get going for you. Okay what’s next?
Other Updates for You
Hmmm, over the summer I worked in Miami, FL which was miles away from Indiana where I’m from but it was a lot of fun. I was a financial consultant working for a property management firm helping the CEO/Owner analyze the management company processes, financials, clients, staff, and more as well as assisting with management of the clients. We managed about 35 condominium associations totaling over 1,200 units as well as about 20 private units for high net worth investors.
What are condominium associations? Well it’s basically those tall sky scraper buildings you see in Miami that people live in. Everyone owns their own unit and the building is managed by a board of directors since everyone has to share the pool, parking lot, and other common areas. The boards don’t want the management responsibility because they are normal working people who have jobs and so most hire out the work to a property management company like the one I worked for.
School Year: August 2015 – Current (November 2015)
Once I got back to school I took a job at a RE/MAX agency assisting the broker and the real estate agents in the building. It taught me a lot about answering tenant phone calls as well as people wanting to set up showings. I got access to the MLS each day which is a listing service where agents list properties for sale so that other agents can find the right house or property for their clients. Overall, it added on to my knowledge of the industry.
Once my property was undergoing renovations and I was back at school without much to do or help out with, I decided to start working towards my goal of acquiring more properties. I had gone home to a Notre Dame vs Texas football game and a family friend told me to reach out to one of her family members about my investing plan, so I did. I met up with the potential investor and showed him my pitch book, which was just several papers and charts stapled together, and he okay’d me to start looking for property to purchase and sending the deals his way to approve.
The markets have been slow. I have set criteria for what I’m looking for in my rental properties and so far few properties coming on to the market have matched. The ones I’ve sent him have been bought up by other investors before we’ve gotten a chance to get an offer in.
I recently started a new rigorous schedule. I’m trying to be efficient and minimize waste in my day. Here’s a look at my schedule I’ve been trying to adhere to the past few weeks:
- 6 am wake up and head to the gym
- 7:30 am return home, shower, breakfast
- 8:30 am start work at RE/MAX
- 12:00 pm – 2:00 pm off of work and heading to campus for class
- 2:00 pm done with class and heading home
- 2:30 pm – 5:00 pm working on end of year budgets for condos in Miami
- 5:30 pm – 7 pm school class
- 7:30 pm – 9 pm working on more budgets or trying to find new clients for the company to manage
- 9 pm – 11 pm is my time to do work on Under 30 Wealth or work on researching things related to real estate
- 11:30 pm start winding down to sleep and build social media before bed for U30 Wealth
There’s never enough time in a day when you have a full plate. I’m working 2 jobs, one at RE/MAX and one for my boss from the summer whose in Miami. I’m able to do things virtually and communicate via text or email. Then I’m also trying to use down time to search for investment properties for my investor as well as network to find more investors for the future once my investor is tapped out with how many properties he’s willing to partner in. He has connections he will refer me to at some point if things go well. Plus I’m working on side businesses and projects that I’ll start up and work with my boss from Miami on.
My ultimate goal is to get an asset management business going where I have several investor partnerships in different properties, ideally apartment complexes. I’ll be partnering with my boss in Miami to grow a property management service for rental properties since we only have a few private investors currently and then I plan to sell real estate part time as a sales agent for side income. As an agent someday in the near future, I’ll be handling my own investment deals too which will make me money on the purchase and save me on the sale.
A lot of thoughts and ideas I’m playing around with still while I’m finishing my degree but when I get out of school in December 2016, it’s full go. I’m charging ahead full steam now but school interferes with a lot of my day having sporadic classes.
Long term I just want to flip houses full time and fix up houses to be used as rentals but hire a property manager so that I’m hands off and just managing the system and collecting my return on investment. You have to remove yourself at some point in order for it to be a business otherwise you’re just an employee for yourself working a job.
That wraps up today’s first update. You saw my first rental purchase story as well as the before photos. You got to see what I did over the summer to grow my knowledge of property management and what I did this fall to grow my knowledge of real estate agents. I’m attacked from all angles learning the ins and outs of the industry so that I’m well rounded investor who can manage his own property if needed and purchase and sell his own properties as an agent.
I look forward to our next update and hopefully I have a new property under contract by then!
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