BiggerPockets Podcast 080: Smart Rental Property Investing, Getting Your License, and Investing For Retirement with Jonna Weber

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Today on the BiggerPockets Podcast we are excited to sit down with a Jonna Weber, a buy-and-hold investor and real estate agent out of the Boise, ID area.

Jonna is a great example of how anybody can and should invest in real estate! In our conversation, we cover a lot of ground on how to use real estate for retirement and why real estate is a better avenue than the stock market. We also cover why an investor might want to become a real estate agent, how to find investor-friendly agents, what to look for when purchasing an investment property and much much more!

Read the Transcript

Click here to read the transcript.

Listen to The Show on iTunes

Click here to listen on iTunes.

Listen to the Podcast Here

In This Show We Cover…

  • How anyone can invest in real estateBiggerPockets-Podcast-Cover
  • Why would an investor become an agent in the first place?
  • The importance of running the numbers with someone else
  • Why investors are the best clients for an agent to have
  • The hardest part of being a landlord
  • How to get longer leases out of your tenants
  • How to use BiggerPockets as a resource to manage your own properties
  • Creating an “in-house” property management company for only your own properties
  • Financing how-to’s
  • Using cash flow to build cash reserves
  • Real estate vs. the stock market
  • Investing in real estate for retirement
  • How to be safe as an investor and agent
  • What to check for during your due diligence process
  • On market deals vs. off market deals
  • How to find an investor-friendly agent
  • And a TON more!

Links Mentioned in the Show:

Books Mentioned in the Show:

Tweetable Topics:

“Managing your own properties is short term pain for a long term goal.” (Tweet This!)

“It’s not an emergency unless it’s ACTUALLY an emergency.” (Tweet This!)

“If you can run your numbers with someone else, it will help you avoid the shinny object syndrome.” (Tweet This!)

Connect with Jonna:

About Author

Thanks for checking out the BiggerPockets Real Estate Investing & Wealth Building Podcast. Hosts Joshua Dorkin & Brandon Turner strive to bring top-notch educational content and interviews to our listeners -- without the non-stop pitch prevalent around the industry. With over 180,000 listeners per show, the BiggerPockets Podcast has become the biggest real estate podcast in the world. But don’t take our word for it. We’re the top-rated and reviewed real estate show on iTunes — check it out, read the reviews on iTunes, and get busy listening and learning!


  1. Jameen Adams on

    Hi BP world! Podcast 80 stole my heart from the title alone! Jonna’s story parallels my real estate plan exactly, I cannot wait to read more and possibly connect with Jonna in BP land.

    • Thank you so much Jameen! I enjoyed sharing and I look forward to hearing more about your story. As you can tell from the podcast, we buy and hold investors tend to keep it simple, but with our eye on the prize!

  2. Great podcast Jonna, sounds like we have a lot in common. We started small too and (still have) one property that is negative cash flow – but this one is for the greater good of family;-)

    I will be encouraging my wife & business partner to listen to this one as she is considering getting her RE license as well, so it will be interesting to know her reaction once she listens to this podcast.

    I hope you have a successful and prosperous future!

  3. Dave, thank you so much for taking the time to comment. Please feel free to have your wife reach out to me about getting her license…depending on your situation, it could be a great thing!
    I look forward to seeing you around BP!

  4. Greeting from San Francisco! Thanks for a great episode, even if you did give my city a pretty good thrashing this time around. I love learning about elegant strategies, but it’s nice to have episodes like this that still highlight the success that people are having with “simpler” strategies.

    • Thank you for the feedback, Lance! Yes – keeping it simple could sum up our strategy. It works great for us and our lifestyle at this point. BTW, I think San Francisco is beautiful. 🙂

  5. Joanna, thanks for the inspiration. With such a wealth of information on the BP forums, it is easy to get caught in information overload on all kinds of investment strategies. It was great to hear a simple, conservative and successful approach to REI. Best of Luck!


  6. Brett Synicky on

    Hi Jonna,

    First off, one of the better shows to date as your whole concept really hit home. So thank you for that. That being said I have a couple questions. I’m a recently licensed agent yet to make a decision on a brokerage. I want to work with investors mainly as well as use the license to increase my own buy and hold portfolio. I love the idea of repeat business from investors. But I’m stuck on analysis on this brokerage decision. I don’t have a ton of money to throw at this, I drive an older car just like you and your husband but I’m determined to get started one way or another.

    Would you work for a big time brokerage like a Keller-Williams (lots of training, less commission in my pocket) or go with a small time firm that has little to no formal training but lets you keep much more of your commissions?

    Thanks again!

    • Hi Brett! Congrats on getting the license. Choosing a brokerage was a challenge for me as well. I ultimately settled at a wonderful large local brokerage (not a franchise) that supports all types of agents and levels of involvement. The biggest factor for me was that I already knew and respected a top agent at the brokerage, who has served as a mentor of sorts in learning the ropes. I would say that is the biggest factor…if you can tie into someone and learn from them. Offer to shadow them and help with some transactions and home showings. I woudn’t worry if they aren’t an investor agent – they just need to be good at closing transactions and have attention to detail. It is important to learn is the ins and outs of the paperwork involved in the transaction, and how to efficiently use the MLS. There is more to it than one might think. Lastly, no matter if you choose a national brand or a small firm…I would make sure they are known for a high level of integrity and make a positive impression on the community.

  7. great podcast again! can’t believe it’s #80! Thank you Jonna for share your experience.
    I was a little sad reflecting on my ex-primary turned rental, I will probably loss $50K if I were to sell, not including all the closing cost and newer mechanical upgrade done when I lived there. It’s + cash flow barely 😎

    80 and still going strong!

    • Hi Bob! I think you are smart to keep those renters in place and hang on while they continue to pay down the mortgage. My thought process would be that instead of coming to the table with $50k, you could put that same money into a down payments on winning investment properties. 🙂 Thanks so much for commenting – there are so many of us in the same situation with a property that doesn’t work out exactly how we like it…but time can heal a lot when you are buy and hold.

  8. Edward J Synicky on

    It is terribly sad to see people 50K under market and perhaps still with a negative every month. A property with “a little positive” is in reality a negative with any vacancy of any length or a repair of any consequence. I suspect this may be controversial but I have to say to Bob T you need to strongly consider a short sell and move on. As Jonna said It is true that time will heal a bad deal in a buy and hold strategy, but your stated age is 80. I know it will negatively impact your credit and you may have tax consequences and other isssues, but you need to talk with someone and evaluate all options.

  9. Gavin Peacock on

    What a BRILLIANT podcast! I knew from the pre-show notes that this was one I had to listen to straight away. It wasn’t only good, it was the best one to date! Josh and Brandon are always perfect hosts, and Jonna was a perfect guest. She has a really good radio voice, and spoke articulately, and with knowledge and enthusiasm. It’s not often I listen to a show twice, but this one was just as good the second time. Very nice job indeed, and thank you for all of the great info!

    • Thank you for the extremely kind words, Gavin. I am so glad that you gleaned some information from the podcast, and felt it was worth listening to twice! See you around the site!

  10. George – that is too funny, made my morning! Never heard that one before. Coincidentally, Sarah is originally from the same small town in Idaho that my family is from. Maybe it is an Idaho accent thing.

  11. Hi Jonna, I loved your podcast! I’m a newbie and your investment strategy is exactly how mine is starting to evolve (minus the self-managing). The purchase of my primary residence two years ago has proved to be addicting, but I’m in San Diego so my first investment property will most likely be out of state. Thanks for the no-nonsense info and simplified approach to REI!

    -Ashley L.

    • Thank you, Ashley! I actually grew up in San Diego, and know how costly that market is. Gorgeous place to be though! If you ever want to start looking at Idaho for investing, please let me know. I wish you all the best and see you around BP!

  12. Michael Yorke

    Hi Jonna! My name is Michael and I am in the very beginning stages of REI. I appreciate you taking the time to share your experience and perspectives on the world of Real Estate Investing, and I wish you the best of luck for the future.

    I am passionate about business, leadership, and development. Your podcast provided many important insights that can only be gained by experience alone. I cannot say, again, how appreciative I am for insight on your experience and for your investment in the growth of others.


  13. Mohit Arora

    AWSOME podcast! Thanks for the great information Jonna! My wife and I have similar goals as yourself when it comes to REI, to fund retirement with a buy and hold strategy. With so much information around flipping, wholesale, etc, it was a pleasant surprise to find your podcast that provided, a newbie like me, insights into buy & hold in middle class neighborhoods. Was sad when it finished, it went by so fast. But I will definitely be listening to it again and also picking up a copy of Buy and Hold Forever. Thanks again!


    • Jonna Weber

      Hi Mohit – thank you for taking the time to comment! As you know, buy and hold isn’t always touted as cool and exciting – but slow and steady often wins the race. It sounds like your family is off to a fantastic start!

  14. Matt Sterling

    Brandon or Josh talks about a system for blackjack(or gambling in general) where you would keep doubling up the next bet if you lose so you can get even. This is called the martingale system and unless you have infinite money, you will eventually go broke. Maybe not apples to apples with how you compared it to buying another rental property as one should be buying as a favorite to succeed not as an underdog like playing casino pit games.

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