Growing up, my mother was the type of person who would cross the street to buy a bottle of Coke at twice the price because, being more expensive, it was obviously better.
My mother had very little financial literacy, and so I was well prepared to take on the world and make my fortune. Grow up, go to school, get a good job and retire…things will all work out in the end. Unfortunately, the world had changed, or perhaps it was never like this in the first place but, while I was in school, you were likely to never get a job. Education, I found, was antiquated. I tried to study the leading edge in technology, only to realize that the education system lagged behind. Looking back, it makes sense. First someone has to learn the technology themselves, then they have to develop a course, and by the time they are ready to teach it, it’s years out of date.
I was going nowhere in school, and the recession was killing jobs, with few prospects on the horizon. I was forced to work for myself and try to survive. Fortunately, I did fairly well. I was able to save up enough money to buy a mortgage and pay it off. I managed to live debt-free for a while, something I’d later regret, and live within my means.
Around this time, I was in the first of several car accidents, none of which were my fault, in fact I was only moving in one of them, and it became harder and harder to work.
By the time of the third, and most severe accident, I was married with a new mortgage, a couple of kids and a single condo which I bought to ease the sale of my old house (and because I couldn’t see any way that it could be a bad investment, even though friends and family warned me off of it). This began the lowest point in my life. I barely worked for two years, my income became non-existant, my 6 months of savings had to last 2+ years supporting several kids…
Fortunately for me, I had a fairly good base to start with, and I had already jumped into investing when I sold my first house, by buying my first condo. I realized that there was something to all this. I had read some books (Chilton, Kiyosaki, and many others), and now I had the inspiration (okay I had no choice) to try and apply it.
What I did over the next few years, and continue to do today, isn’t rocket science, it’s applied common sense. The problem in society I’ve found is that applied common sense isn’t all that common. We’d rather take the easy path and trust in others. When it comes to money though, common sense tells us we’d be stupid to trust others in most cases…(see what I mean about it not being common?).
My company has allowed me to work with every size of business and government (including the United Nations), I’ve worked in low end jobs, I associate with all kinds of people from heads of companies to people down on their luck. I’ve done a lot of volunteer work, and been on many boards, most dysfunctional. I’ve had a lot of experience, traveled in Europe, China and the USA, so I’ve seen and learned a lot. I tend to spend more time learning in a day now than I did when I was in school.
When I do design work, the most important question I need to answer is “Why?”. If you don’t know why something is being done, then you don’t understand it. Why is very important in investing. Why is this stock, bond, investment, piece of real estate being recommended to me? Does the seller really understand it, or does he make his money from selling it? Many banks, mutual funds, realtors, etc. are not in business to make you money, they are in business to make money from you. Therein lies the difference.
Why do I do this?
Good question. I don’t like the system. I want people to learn what I did. My goal as a parent is for my kids to grow up and have the option not to ever work a day in their lives for a pay check. I don’t make money if you read this site, so I think my advice is pretty unbiased. I don’t mind sharing what I’ve learned, because I think the world would be better if more people knew what I’ve learned. Though, if you like what I say, and want to donate money or buy my book I won’t object.
Will the book/site make me rich?
One person who bought my book once asked me straight out, “Will this book make me rich?”. Well, the answer, again common sense, was: “Nope, it’s guaranteed to make you $25 poorer…unless you apply what I say in the book, you’re out at least the price of the book.” I think it’s fair to say, the same applies to the site, except access to the site is currently free.
Now, as a legal disclaimer, I’m not a Realtor, nor a professional of any kind related to real estate, taxation (though I survived an audit), legal matters, economics, or financial matters. I’m just an average guy who took the plunge. Anything you read here is my opinion, not necessarily fact. If I made mistakes, either typographical or in the content itself, I apologize in advance. They are not intentional, but I’m human and not an expert. I don’t guarantee anything you read in the book or blog will make you money, only that, in my experience, it worked for me.
Throughout this blog I’ll make use of many examples that will be heavily simplified (i.e. lots of numbers or considerations will be intentionally left out, or be lower than in the real world). The examples are designed to illustrate a point in the simplest manner possible and shouldn’t be taken as real numbers in a real world situation, nor as an indication of potential profits you may achieve.
This blog is intended as a general guide, and not the “ultimate source” for real estate investing. Before initiating any strategies outlined in this blog seeking further information from qualified experts is strongly recommended before taking any action.
The Author and the publisher shall have neither liability, nor responsibility to any person or legal entity with respect to any sort of loss or damage caused, or alleged to have been caused by information provided in this book or blog. By reading this blog, you fully accept these conditions. If, for any reason, you do not wish to be bound by any or all of these conditions, stop reading now and never read any further, nor have anyone tell you what happens next.