How to Find True Financial Freedom Through Real Estate Investing
My inaugural article for Bigger Pockets was about “why” we invest in Real Estate. After this article you will know more of why we invest and hopefully you will get inspired to move your business to the next level.
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We hear the phrase “Financial Freedom” thrown around, but what does it really mean? Is it just having or earning a lot of money? I know people who earn $800,000 a year and they are far from free! They are in businesses or jobs that own them. I also have met two different billionaires, one of whom owns about 250 businesses and has more time freedom than most. Do you want to eventually be very hands off from your business and have true financial AND TIME freedom? Seeing that time is our most valuable commodity, why not make the most of it? If you are interested in obtaining both, please read on…
How We Are Creating Freedom In Our Business
We started investing a little over 4 years ago. Our business is now doing about 15 full renovations at any given time, and we are on target to do over 60 flips in 2013, Sound busy? Well we are, BUT, not as busy as we used to be doing 20 flips per year.
How is that possible?
We decided last year to start implementing strong internal systems to begin to give us some personal freedom. Has it worked? Well, not totally yet, but we are well on our way. One of the keys to having freedom is to OWN the business and NOT let the business own you. That is the mistake of so many of us small business owners. We let the business own us. We don’t mean to when we start out, but in a short time that is what happens if we don’t make a conscience effort to avoid that trap. If we fall into it, we have no time for anything other than business and surviving!
There is a better way to live and a better way to run your investing business. It became apparent when I learned how one of the billionaires ran his 250 companies. He didn’t run them!! He invests, and finds the right people to run them. That it. Is it really as simple as that? Not quite! To have companies run smoothly, you must develop systems. We don’t have time in this blog to cover everything, because it is pretty extensive. Go read The E-Myth by Michael Gerber. It will enlighten you of how to OWN your business instead of it owning YOU!
How Can You Create Freedom In Your World?
It can be as simple as hiring a property management company to manage your real estate, or hiring contractors to do the work you have been doing yourself on your flips. This will provide freedom! Yes it costs money, but what can you do with the new time that you have found? Whatever you want! Vacation, spend time with your family, build your business, buy more rentals, flip more houses, again, it’s your time, do what you will with it.
Our business changed when we hired an administrative assist who eventually became our office manager. We now found the time to go and flip more houses. We grew even more when we hired on an inside agent who now handles all of our selling of finished houses (that was one of my main roles so it was very hard to release control). Next, we hired on 3 more agents, so now we have 4 inside agents who are running leads and bringing us houses to buy.
A few weeks ago, we hired on a project manager, and it would seem we finally have all of our chess pieces together. We have designed systems for each process and procedure and we are currently working to document and design a manual so if we need to replace any one person, the company doesn’t shut down. If you can treat your business like McDonalds treats a hamburger (Read their story to understand more about systems), you will be amazed at how your business will change.
We could go on forever with the details., but we won’t :-). There are plenty of resources for you to get some great information on systemizing your business. Bottom line is that systems will provide you with financial and time freedom if you manage the process correctly. Even simple ones to start should be done ASAP as your life will start to look very different.
One Of My Best Days Ever!
In closing, let me tell you what inspired me to write this post. This past Friday was a school day. When we woke up that morning, I took my 13 year old son to school. I then returned home to take my 8 year old princess to school. Well, I decided I had a different idea. I like having what we call “Daddy Dates” with my kids, and it was time for my daughter and I to spend some time together.
Instead of school, I took my daughter to an inside water park here in Upstate NY (don’t call the truant officer!!) We spent the entire day together. I shut off my phone and became an 8 year old again for the day. We went on all the rides, and I quickly remembered I was 44 after going up and down 4 flights of stairs over, and over, and over! Plus, being twisted around in all the rides was making me a little dizzy! We spent an amazing day playing together, bonding, and just loving each other. It was just she and I, and the lines were very short as most kids were in school and most parents had to work. It was the kind of special day that neither she nor I will forget for many years, or possibly the rest of our lives.
On our way home as she slept, I checked my messages to find out what went on while I was out. All on this same day, we sold another wholesale with about an $11K profit, our largest renovated home just went under contract for $362K, and we were featured on the front page of the local Business Review publication here in our area with a 4 page spread all about us and our success on the inside. Wow, what a day! And all of this while I was at the water park having a wonderful day with my daughter.
As VISA says:
Gas to get to the park: $25
Tickets to get in the park: $62
Lunch in the park (because you must by their food) $25 🙂
Having a very positive article written about you: Very Humbling
Having two large deals go under contract in your absence: Great Feeling
Creating an amazing memory with my beautiful daughter while my business ran without me….
What areas will you systemize in your business to give you more freedom? Take small steps.
Can I help provide any suggestions? I would love to hear your comments and/or questions.