BiggerPockets Podcast 353: Turning $5K Into $5K/Month and Retiring at 40 with Tim Rhode

BiggerPockets Podcast 353: Turning $5K Into $5K/Month and Retiring at 40 with Tim Rhode

50 min read
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“Trading up” to successfully retire financially free at 40!

On today’s show, Brandon and David interview retired real estate broker Tim Rhode, who explains how he was able to buy great deals and 1031 exchange them into financial freedom!

Tim shares some fantastic advice on playing great financial defense to achieve an early retirement, crushing it in real estate sales, and locking up deals during his first conversation with sellers.

Tim also shares how knowing his market led to him making hundreds of thousands buying land in the path of progress, how to build a “fulfillment triangle,” and how he recognized the market turning in 2006 and cashed out before losing money.

Tim has a huge heart, is committed to helping others get out of the rat race, and shares some incredible advice on how to do so. Make sure you listen for his description of the several levels of financial freedom and his belief that those who make it to the top of the mountain should throw down the rope for the rest still climbing. Download this one today!

Click here to listen on iTunes.

Listen to the Podcast Here

Read the Transcript Here

Brandon: This is The Bigger Pockets podcast, show 353.

Brandon: What’s going on everyone? It’s Brandon, host of The Bigger Pockets podcast here with my co-host Mr. David. David, welcome to the show again buddy. What’s up?

David: What’s up amigo. I had a really good weekend. I actually was the keynote speaker at a real estate conference in San Ramon.

Brandon: Look at you.

David: Then I went to my brother-in-laws wedding. I have two flips that we put under contract today with my partner. So those should both be pretty good in the Bay area. So, I’m on a roll.

Brandon: You’re on a roll. That’s awesome, dude. Congrats. I got a triplex under contract last week. But, I’ll tell you more about that later in the story and how that’s going to get me a Tesla, which is kind of cool. I tell that story on today’s interview with our guest Tim Rhode.

Brandon: So, Tim Rhode was on the show back on episode I don’t remember, but it was one that we did … I don’t know, we’ll see if Kevin can’t find the message. Kevin’s our producer, he’s awesome. But, back when we did that group interview with Josh, and David Osborne, Tim, Pat Hiben, and you and me on stage. We did a live show. Anyway, Tim was one of those. He was the get the goods in the woods guy if you remember back then. But, Tim has an amazing story and Tim was actually one of your mentors early on, as David tells the story today on the show as well about how he got you into real estate.

Brandon: So, Tim’s also an amazing real estate agent, a real estate investor, and was able to retire from his real estate at 40 because of how awesome he did. Then continued to do some more real estate investing and he tells a ton of great stories today. Especially my favorite thing is when he tells a story of how he went from 5,000 in cash to making $5,000 a month in cash flow. That story was just fantastic, and we cover a lot of intricate parts of that. But that perfectly applied to everybody listening today if you’re into financial freedom. You’re going to love it.

Brandon: So, without no further ado … Well, with some more ado. Let’s get to today’s-

David: Quick Tips.

Brandon: I don’t know why that’s so funny. Today’s quick tip, we got a new thing launched at Bigger Pockets and it’s really expensive. It’s F-R-E-E. It’s free. It’s called the Fire Starter. Here’s the idea behind the Fire Starter. It is a … I mean, I guess you could call it a goal tracker, a action taking tracker, whatever. It’s called the Fire Starter. It’s a tool to help you reach your goals. So, if you want to become financially free it’s the perfect way to track your progress and hold yourself accountable.

Brandon: So it’s going to help you reach your big goals. Your 90 day goals, if you’re using the 90 Days of Intention Journal, or the Intention Journal. Help you set up daily habits, so you can track your habits that you’re doing regularly. So, again, it’s free. You’re going to love it. Just go to, log into your account and it’s right there on your dashboard. So if you go to your dashboard on Bigger Pockets you’re going to find it under that section that says My Goals. So check it out. Again, Quick Tip is the Fire Starter.

Brandon: There’ll also be a little bit more information of it on the show notes for today’s show at in case you have any questions. We’ll put a little bit more information there.

Brandon: All right. Well, let’s get to-

David: No more ado. Let’s get to it.

Brandon: All right. Now, no more ado. It’s time for today’s interview with Tim Rhode, let’s get to it.

Brandon: All right, Tim. Welcome to the BiggerPockets Podcast. Man, good to have you here.

Tim: Hey, thanks for having me on, guys. I am so looking forward to this. Two good friends talking real estate, what can be better?

Brandon: What can be better. Well, last time we had you on the show it was part of a group. It was back when we did the episode we recorded live and you were on a panel of different individuals along with David Osborne, Pat Hiban, and Josh Dorman was there. Me and David, and I’m probably forgetting somebody else. But it was awesome.

Brandon: But, people wanted to know more about you. You were the only one in that group that had not yet been on this show. You’re like a legit real estate guy. So, I’m excited to dig into your story a little bit because I know a lot about your scheme, and your goods in the woods, and your charity work. But, I want to know more about your real estate. So let’s start at the very beginning. How did you even get into this world of real estate investing?

Tim: Well, I it started because I … Gosh, when I was a kid I loved Monopoly. I loved just … You know how some of us are born with that entrepreneurial spirit and just kind of see the whole world different? So I guess it started at a very young age. But, I got off to a rough start. Barely graduated high school, never went to college, and at 25 I’m a part-time grocery clerk painting addresses on people’s curbs to buy diapers for my [inaudible 00:03:21] and selling real estate. Was investing, gosh I guess I started investing back when I was a grocery clerk before I started listing and selling. So, at a tender young age I was buying properties.

Brandon: So, why real estate at a young age? What got you into that? Did you have family into it or anything like that?

Tim: Yeah. My mom listed and sold. She took me to a Wayne Dyer event and a Tom Hopkins event. These are old, like Zig Zigler and stuff. This was back in the 70s. So, I started going to events like that and learning just the things that you could do to earn a good living, and invest wisely to get somewhere with your life. So, I think I really liked that whole if it is to be it’s up to me concept of how to do things after being a union grocery clerk.

David: We haven’t mentioned this yet, but Tim here is actually the very first person that got me introduced to real estate. I literally would not be on this podcast, I would not have investment properties, I would not be an agent if it wasn’t for Tim Rhode who reached out to me while I was working at a restaurant and said, “Hey, I heard that you’re really good and you’ve got some talent. Do you want to come prospect for me?” I said yes because I knew that Tim Rhode was the guy from all the commercials that played. He used to have this commercial as a real estate agent, which is what he got into after being a grocery clerk, that they would sing, “Call Tim Rhode and start packing.”

David: So, I didn’t know what a prospector was. I just know when Tim Rhodes says, “Do you want to do this?” You better say yes. That is literally how I got my first experience with cold calling, with understanding real estate. Tim would have me running around and looking at pre-foreclosures, and talking to people. Knocking on doors. Having difficult conversations with someone who’s been hounded by creditors, and trying to buy their house so we could flip it before the bank took it. It was my first exposure before BiggerPockets, before anything.

David: Then Tim really stayed in touch with me over the years and just encouraged me to keep my rentals. There really was nobody else that I had to keep me in this game. Tim was the guy that basically had me in it. Then he got me into Go Abundance and things kind of took off from there.

David: So, Tim’s one of the people that I look at, like my first and my biggest mentor that I ever had. The most influential person. I’m really curious, Tim, if you can share how you went from a high energy grocery clerk that was just blowing through a very low paying job into taking that same energy and applying it into real estate sales where you made all the money that you then invested?

Tim: Yeah, that’s a really good question, David. Because a lot of us find ourselves, we know that if it doesn’t fit where we are, or it’s like we cannot put the key in and turn that lock. So, here I am a grocery clerk being a very personable person who likes [inaudible 00:06:31]. It just didn’t, the job didn’t fit. So, I get into real estate and the first weekend I’m in real estate I hold an open house I sell. Those people need to list a home and then I take some buyers out, and I sell them a home. It’s like, “Oh, my goodness. It is on.” I found … So, I’m trying to just calm down because I just made more that weekend then I did in the last six months as a grocery clerk.

Tim: So, then my mind just starts. The wheels are turning. In high school I never paid attention because I couldn’t understand the periodic tables. I didn’t understand algebra, and trigonometry. But I learned basic English, basic math. The things that … Just the basics of everything, I guess. Then looked at what did the grocery business do right? They delivered sunshine service. That was their motto. So when I sold real estate I was going to work harder than everybody else. I was going to learn everything I could do about the business. So, I just concentrated on coming through for people.

Tim: Then very early on, back before anybody had teams, I got an assistant. I paid Diane [McClanihan 00:07:46] 48,000 a year, and four weeks paid vacation my second year in the business to manage my escrows and basically manage the team so I could go out and do what I did best. Talk to a lot of people and list homes right. My income went from … By the way, I was making 60 grand when I promised her 48. My income went to 170 the next year, and I never looked back. Just always had people around me doing all the things I suck at so I could get out and meet with people, come through and also go out and look for properties for myself.

David: That’s cool.

Brandon: Yeah, you know that concept of always trying to find other people to do the things you suck at. It’s one of those … It seems so obvious to people who are successful. Because I feel like that’s … But when you’re starting out that’s not obvious. You don’t know that. I always learned growing up work on your weaknesses. If you’re not good at batting, bat more. Just spend hours at the dugout batting or whatever. I don’t know the phrase because I quit baseball eventually.

Brandon: But, when I look at successful people they’re not out there going, “Well, I’m not very good at this. So I better get better at it. Better go take a class on accounting so I can become a better accountant for myself.” Instead they’re like, “How do I do this?” In fact, I heard once an interview with a billionaire. The billionaire had mentioned … Or, I guess I heard somebody who told me the story of a billionaire who said that their number one skill in life is being a quitter. Everything they do in life they just try to quit because they say, “I want somebody else to do it who’s better than I can. So, I’ll build something and then I want to quit that position as soon as possible so somebody else can come and do it better. Then I can move onto the next thing.” I thought that was such a cool, kind of, way of looking at that.

Tim: Yeah. It’s a brilliant concept and Jeff Hoffman’s book Scale talks about you master something and then you find somebody under you and hopefully at some point the business becomes large enough where that somebody over is supervising that and you’re on to the next business. That’s David Osborne 101 by the way.

Brandon: Yeah. That really is. All right. So, let’s talk about your real estate investing. So you’re making good money as an agent. There’s a lot of people listening to this show right now that are making good money as an agent, or as a dentist, or as a doctor, or as a dock worker. Whatever. They’re making decent income. How did you translate that income into real estate investing? Were you buying rentals, were you flipping houses? What were you doing that in the beginning?

Tim: Yeah. I was really aggressive. I like to use the word risk tolerance level. It’s good to know your own. My 36 year old son has a very low risk tolerance level, and I begged him and got him into a few investments of Andrew Kushman’s, which worked out really good for him. He’s very happy. I had an extremely high risk tolerance level. I’d go out and find properties I had no money to buy and write long escrows, and then just tell myself, “All right, you got to make an extra 25 grand in the next four months.” Then just bust it and sell a few extra homes, and make an extra 18,400 and put 4,600 on a credit card and eat mac and cheese, and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for three months. And, oh darn, the roofs out. Just hustle, hustle, hustle. Get back to par and then go do it again.

Tim: I just never had any savings, or any … It was just for a probably 15 year period just always betting on my ability to earn and our ability to tighten our belts if we needed to. But just kind of had the hammer down. I never knew why. It just felt … It was just a fun game.

David: One thing you just mentioned, Tim, was what you call playing defense. That you live beneath your means. Can you share a little bit about what your mindset was once the money started rolling in from real estate sales? I mean, we kind of skipped over that. But you were just the man in Manteca. You were, I mean to this day people talk about you like Babe Ruth. “There will never be another Tim Rhode.” How many houses you sold. I’m pretty sure you were selling houses and you didn’t even know it was your listing. You were just phenatical about that. If somebody had say, “Hey, we’re thinking about selling. We called Bob.” You’re like, “Stop right there. I’m coming over right now. I got the paperwork.” Right?

Tim: I’ve got stories just … “Wait, wait, wait. Have you signed the contract yet? I’ll be right over.”

David: So fearless, and aggressive.

Tim: “Wait till Carol’s there too, please.”

David: So tell us, as the money starts rolling in from that how did you manage to stay beneath your means? What motivated you and what was your mindset?

Tim: David, this is a huge, huge point in all of this. This is the wealthy barber, the millionaire next door. Defense wins championships. What I did that few others did, and I call them the one line ABC’s. My income went up drastically from grocery clerk to successful agent to very successful agent. I played iron clad defense. I drove the same car for 10 years for three decades in a row. I’ve never worn bling, or cared about what anybody thought. Just never, I never bought listings, I never spent a ton on … Well, we spent good money on marketing, I shouldn’t say that. But I just didn’t have … I didn’t care what anyone else thought while [inaudible 00:13:14] Madison Avenue thought.

Tim: While my income went from 30 to 60 to 170 to 325 to 400 never made it 25 to 30 to 35 to 40 to maybe 60. So we have a huge gap in left to invest. I just invested wisely in what I knew best, local real estate from 1985 to 2005 when I sold into our Cali craze and cashed out at a pretty darn good time.

Brandon: That’s awesome. So you were buying single family houses, or rental? I mean, multi-family, what were you buying?

Tim: I started off with single families. First thing I bought was a triple wide mobile home while I was a grocery clerk. It was a bank repo, it was worth 40 grand. I picked it up for 20. I needed 10 grand down, I had five. I borrowed five from Merv King, the grocery manager. I kept that for a rental when I bought my first single family. Still as a grocery clerk, come to think of it. Then right when I got into real estate we moved two blocks away and I kept that one for a rental.

Tim: So, then I started buying anything I could get my hands on. Single family, duplexes. I did really well with a few properties with land in the path of growth. One story I like to tell is how I turned 5,000 into 5,000 a month over two real estate deals.

Brandon: Oh, please tell that.

Tim: Yeah. So, at this point I’m a real estate broker, which is a really good gig to be. They say realtors find the best deals, well you’re right. You’re in the trenches and you have your eyes wide open. So I had a really good name for myself, and people would call me up. I had very good trust in the community. So, I’d come to their house and I’d say, “I could wear two hats. I could either list your home and get you top dollar, or I could just buy it and make it a very easy deal. But once I list your home I can never buy it because I have a fiduciary duty at that point.” So, I had this couple say, “All we need is five grand and we can go buy this new home. Will you just take over our home subject to?” So I did. I paid them five grand, I took over their home. I put a tenent in there, I kept it for a year. They did wonderful, it was right at a time when our market was starting to take off. They bought a new home that went up drastically for them. So it was great for them.

Tim: So, I bought and a year later I exchanged it into a piece of land in the path of growth that had been on the market for probably eight years on a busy street called Louise Avenue right near I5, which runs from Mexico to Canada. There was a Hampton Inn coming in right next to it and a strip center coming in on the other side of it. I knew this from following what’s going on in my city, and knowing the real estate and stuff. So, it’s time was right and I went and bought it from the owner. I paid them the 120,000 down that, that property had appreciated over the last year and a half, believe it or not. Because we were in that kind of a … How can I put it? Just hitting top market. Land in the path of growth wasn’t worth it, wasn’t worth it, wasn’t worth it. Hampton Inn’s coming in, strip center’s coming in, boom it’s worth way, way more.

Tim: So I take that 120 I buy that piece of land. I sold the piece of land three years later, that had an old piece of crap house on it, but I had a tenent in it that covered the payment. Then I sold it three years later for a million 80 and I’d bought it for 360.

Brandon: Wow.

Tim: Yeah. So-

David: What year was this at, Tim?

Tim: This was between 2001 to 2004. Just think of that time-

David: Like 15 years ago million dollar. That was a little bit more than it is now.

Tim: Yeah. So, actually that piece of … They never do anything with that piece of land. It’s still sitting there, it’s-

Brandon: Really.

Tim: They missed their time, yeah. So, and they tired to … This good piece of this story. They wanted to back out and when I first went into escrow with them they wanted a long escrow. I said, “Fine. Just go hard with a $100,000 non-refundable deposit after 30 days and I’ll give you a eight month escrow,” or whatever they wanted. Because they wanted to do their due diligence. In doing their due diligence I think they found out a couple more hotels were coming in, and they decided not to do it. They tried to back out and were going to lose their 100 grand and went through with the deal. So glad I said large deposit non-refundable.

Tim: Anyway. So I exchanged that property into a building leased to Auto Zone in Knoxville, Tennessee that counting my payment, my mortgage pay down every month is $5,000 a month. So, I took the five grand, bought the property in the path of growth and exchanged it into the very easy all I get is 12 paychecks. We paid your taxes, we paid your insurance, and a 1099 per year from them. All tax free because of depreciation. Boom. Is this a great country or what?

Brandon: I love that story for a couple things. I want to illustrate a few points in here for people who maybe didn’t understand a couple concepts. Couple things. First of all subject to. So you said you bought that very first property $5,000 subject to their existing mortgage. Can you explain what that means?

Tim: That means I basically just started writing checks and took over their loan.

Brandon: Yep.

Tim: Yep. Just got their address … Just got their payment stickers of where they’re making their checks and it starting coming from T&T Enterprises instead of Joe and Betty Martin.

Brandon: Yep. So subject to is a popular … It used to be a lot more popular than I feel like it is today. I don’t know why that is but it seems of kind of like … Not as … It was super … And it still works. I hear people still doing it today. There are some risks, of course, with it so if people are going to go do it make sure you look those up. Like the bank might freak out and not like that. But, there’s ways around it. There’s things you can do. There’s reasons that people still do it today. So anyway. Subject to investing, very cool.

Brandon: Then, you went and bought land. Now, land doesn’t cash flow. I mean, unless you’re renting it. But land … So you bought that almost as a speculation, right. Was that worrisome to you or you just knew this is going to sell for a lot more later. I me getting a great deal.

Tim: Yeah. Really great concept, Brandon. That was one of two deals like this I did. David, I don’t know if you remember a piece of property I owned out on an airport with Dick Grada, it was three and a half acres out near the hospital out there where the golf course … West of town. That was another deal like this where I bought that in the 90s. Just waited for the path of growth to come my way and I bought it for $115,000 dollars, and sold it 12 years later for 1.2.

Brandon: Wow.

Tim: Yeah. So, these were just long-term plays. Just knowing your area. Guys, there’s times in the cycle. There’s times, know when to hold them, know when to fold them. I’d really like to talk about cycles.

Brandon: Yeah.

Tim: Because that’s played such a huge part. My career was here I am a very successful person. But we’re talking decades, and it’s a marathon not a sprint.

David: Well, what I’m hearing you say is you were continuing to generate income working. You didn’t say, “I got some investment property, I’m just going to quit. Then I’m going to go relax on the beach.” You kept grinding, you kept mastering your craft. You excelled in selling homes. You built a team, you had an assistant. Then rather than putting pressure on yourself to just invest all that money in anything you strategically picked the stuff that you felt were your home runs and you held them until it made sense to sell it. Then you were always trading up. That’s another principle I’m picking out of this. Is you took your money and you put it into another good deal.

David: You didn’t have to do 20, 30 deals a year. You could do one deal a ear, maybe, and then eight, nine years later its gone up in value so you sell it, you trade it into something. You just started with this snowball with every single move, just got bigger and bigger and bigger till you had a really big snowball. If that’s pretty accurate to how it happened tell me what your mindset was when it came to knowing when to hold them and when to fold them.

Tim: There was a lot of different things going on because into all of these we’re down in Manteca in the valley. Tina and I had a dream since we met each other in 1990 that someday we’d … I’m looking out at, you guys it snowed last night. There’s snow covered hills, and the water’s coming off my roof, and the trees are changing. It’s just this magnificent view. Someday I knew I’d be sitting here having this conversation.

Tim: I’m down there in Manteca just working my game, and sharpening my saw. Just that’s why Tribal Millionaires is so important. Because I was sharpening my saw. Do you guys know who Tom Ferry is? I was in a Mastermind with Tom back when his goal was to get his first credit card. So I was doing this stuff back in the last 80s to 90s. Way back when. Same kind of thing, learning from people outside of my area. Best [inaudible 00:23:57] I’m doing. Best practices for life. For living a full life. Best practices for taking the money I’m making and make it work for me so I freaking get [inaudible 00:24:07].

Tim: So just, my mindset was just constantly learning and honing. Then, a very important piece of all this is are you in what I call the 1 Life fulfillment triangle where your passions meet your talents where there’s opportunity. Let’s talk David is a cop, and Tim Rhode in the grocery business. “No. We’re not.” Okay. Brother James selling Cutco Knives. He loves selling Cutco but he’s a musician motivator. That’s our fulfillment triangle. Look at Greenie now. He’s thriving and I’ve been thriving in these different incarnations one after another the last 20 years because I’ve had the luxury of becoming financially free young.

Tim: So, my point is if you’re not in that fulfillment triangle where your passions meet your talents, where there’s opportunity in the marketplace. If you’re not currently in that do what David did, do what I did when I was a grocery clerk. Effing fix it. Find a way to fix it.

Brandon: So, the fulfillment triangle. Passion meets talent meets opportunity. Can you explain a little bit … I mean, there’s passion. But a lot of people out there are saying, “Well, yeah. I’m not really sure what I’m passionate about. Or, I’m passionate about a lot of things.” How does somebody find that passion and then actually get good at it? I guess I just want to kind of dive into this because I love this idea of the fulfillment triangle. So how does somebody find that passion?

Tim: You go inside and you do the tough inner work to figure out who in the heck am I at my core. What do I like, and what don’t I like? David’s more of an introvert, I’m more of an extrovert. David’s numbers and details, and stuff like that. I delegate all of that. So, it’s knowing who you are and what you like. Then where will I fit? What could I wake up every single day thinking, “And they pay me to do this.”

Tim: By the way, there’s also patience. There was a time when I still was listing and selling real estate and I wanted to be up here getting the goods in the woods. Starting the next phase of my life and I had to remain where I was because my daughter was a junior in high school and I owed it to my family. You know what I mean? So, there’s times when it’s … You’re still holding them, not folding them. It’s not time to sell the wine yet and you need to just knuckle down and fight through a tough period. But while you’re doing that you’re juggling the next incarnation of making that happen. That’s the hard part. That’s the working [inaudible 00:26:56].

Brandon: Yeah. That’s something we don’t talk about enough in real estate. Because it’s not a very sexy term, and that’s patience. The fact that, I mean you’ve been doing this for a long time and you have an amazing life today. You’ve got an amazing charity that you work with. You have all these great stories. But, they came from decades of hard work. You mentioned, especially that deal that perfectly illustrated. The $5,000 to 5,000 a month, that wasn’t over night. It probably wouldn’t sell a book if you called it $5,000 to $5,000 a Month Over the Course of Two Decades. That wouldn’t be that sexy of a term. But that’s the truth of what real estate often times is. We buy stuff, we hold it, we exchange into bigger properties. Then we hold those for a little while.

Tim: I think like everything else, I have this concept of when we were kids there were these balsa wood propellers. Or, balsa wood airplanes that have these rubber band propellers. Do you know what I’m talking about, Brandon?

Brandon: Mm-hmm (affirmative). Yep.

Tim: Okay. So, you put it together and if you wind it a few times it goes right in front of you and falls at your feet. If you wind it more it goes across the room 10, 15 feet. If you keep winding it, and winding it, and winding it, and give it one more wind it soars beautifully. The challenge is, is this like a lot of things in life. People want things handed to them. They think it’s going to be easy. They just wind their propeller a few times and get frustrated because they don’t get results. Or they wind it pretty good and get decent results. If you just dig a little deeper, and wind it. Whatever it is for you, wind it a few more times you’re going to find amazing results.

Brandon: Yeah. That’s really good. So, to mention one more thing I wanted to do before we move on. You turning that 5,000 into 5,000 a month you said you exchanged it. I’m assume you’re talking about doing a 1031 exchange? Is that how that works?

Tim: Correct.

Brandon: Can you explain that for those-

Tim: [crosstalk 00:28:55] for a 1031 exchange.

Brandon: All right. So what is that?

Tim: So, well I did twice where I would have paid taxes on from the difference between the 5,000 and the 125,000 less sales costs on the first deal. I would have paid the difference between the 360 purchase price and the million 80 on the second deal. Those would have been hundreds of thousands in taxes I would have paid. I delayed those taxes until, this year I’m finally going to sell that property 15 years later. I’ll make around $800,000 net after all is said and done. I may just pay the tax, I may exchange it again. There’s things called opportunity zones. I’ll look at that opportunity when it comes to me later this year, early next year. But a 1031 exchange is a good third level move to make once you go from small deals to big deals.

Brandon: Yeah. That’s so cool. A similar story that I’m in the middle of right now, but I’ll tell it real quick anyway. So, I bought an apartment complex for pretty much no money down back when I was 24 years old. Essentially what I did is I worked out a deal, I did a lease option for the first six months with the sellers so that I didn’t have to have any money down. I saved the money during those six months that I was making off the property to use as a down payment. So really I pretty much got it no money down. Then I sold that property for a … And I used a partner in that deal, I brought in my parents as partners. I said, “Hey, if I can use your line of credit I’ll give you half some day.” So I used their money to rehab it.

Brandon: Anyways, sold it later on for I think a profit of $250,000. Took that money, gave my parents their half, took my half and 1031 that into two different properties. A mobile home park that today I make a few thousand dollars a month off of, and then a property in Ohio. I just sold the property in Ohio just two weeks ago, or three weeks ago. Now I’m buying a triplex here in Hawaii that’s going to cash for like 1,400 a month. That property is going to pay for my Tesla that I’m buying. So essentially it’s exchanging up.

Brandon: So, now I make thousands off this mobile home park, and I make enough for a Tesla payment on this local thing. It all came from one deal two trades ago in a 1031. So, it’s just cool that’s how real estate works.

Tim: Yeah. There’s a lot of different games you can play with it and that’s what makes it such a fun thing to invest in. It’s like a kid in the candy store.

Brandon: Yeah. There’s-

David: That’s they winding that propeller is so powerful. Because most people say, “Should I buy a house, or a Tesla?” But Brandon says, “I will buy a house, exchange it into a bigger house, turn that into a hotel, and then let my hotel pay for my Tesla.” And my next Tesla after that, and then my Ferrari, and everything else, right. That’s the wise investor who continues to grow equity and manage their funds well will have everything that the person who can’t delay gratification will have, but they will … That well will never run dry. It will keep going to pay and fund the life that they want to live.

Tim: That’s right.

Brandon: Yeah. I read that in, I think it was Rich Dad, Poor Dad. Maybe it was Cash Flow Quadrant, one of the early Kiyosaki books where he mentions his wife wanted some fancy, I don’t know, Maserati or something that was cool back then. She bought a rental property and it paid for it. Now, remember at the moment that just triggered in my head, “You can do that?” I thought, “You could buy an asset that pays for a liability?” So, I mean I’ve been wanting a Tesla since they came out. But I refused to buy one until I could tell the story that I bought it using rental income. Because I have to do that. Just because of Kiyosaki, so. Anyway.

David: Are you insinuating that, that wasn’t my original idea and that someone else had that thought first? Brandon, that sounds like blasphemy.

Brandon: No, not at all. Everything’s your idea. I always assume you are the origin of every good idea in the world, and that everyone else just copies you. That’s what I usually-

David: And then you just fail to give me credit when you quote me.

Brandon: Exactly.

David: Well, that’s awesome. Tim, I want to ask you something else really quickly. I know when I knew you, and I was working for you, you were buying rentals and you were flipping houses. A lot of investors get stuck in, “Should I flip, or should I buy rentals?” Tell me what your thought process was with doing both and how you made the decision on an individual property of what you were going to do with it.

Tim: I think every property was different. We just look at the opportunity for what made the most sense for where we were at the moment. Because there was a time when we were listing, buying rentals, flipping and then we quit listing and selling so our income was predominantly what was already coming in as residual income and the [inaudible 00:33:45]. So, there was time where in retrospect I probably wish I would have kept that I flipped 2000 to 2004, and then sold when I sold everything into the [inaudible 00:34:00] to 2007.

David: But you still use the profits from flips to fund the rentals that you ended up keeping, which you then exchange into bigger properties. They all sort of played a role in this really big cool thing that you did. I don’t know if we mentioned it, but you retired at 40 years old.

Tim: Yeah. When I say retired I was flipping a home a month. So, if that’s working, and have rentals that I was managing. I retired from listing and selling at 40. Then kind of … So, if you look at it in the five levels of financial freedom I was probably at level three, level four because I was still actively finding properties and stuff like that. Now I’m at level five and I haven’t actively purchased a real estate property in 20 years.

David: So why don’t you explain that a little bit. What are your five levels of financial freedom?

Tim: Level one is where typical American is, in debt up to their ears. Have no clue what they’re doing. Everybody around them’s clueless. So, party. Level two is just starting to figure this out. Are aware of people doing it, maybe own their own home. Level three is I have a rental in place, rental or two. I have my retirement in place, I’m doing the things that I know I need to do to be setting up a trust, and insurances and stuff like that. Level four is well on your way to financial freedom. You probably could turn your game board over but you’d have to lower your lifestyle a bit maybe. Level five is, I’ve been here for some time. I’m getting the goods in the woods, I choose what I do daily. That’s one I fully live in abundance, and my family. Just fun stuff. So, then level six I’ve been thinking about is when you higher somebody to manage all that for you and you’re no longer even [inaudible 00:36:08]. You’re just-

David: That’s cool.

Brandon: Can you explain, you mentioned 1 Life. I want to talk a minute about that. What is 1 Life, and what do you teach in 1 Life?

Tim: So I talked about the 1 Life fully lived triangle. 1 Life fully lived is a non-profit, you can learn more about us at It’s where we teach people the inner core teachings of how to live your most fulfilling life possible. I talked before about the 1 Life Fulfillment Triangle. Once again, that’s figuring out where’s your passions meet your talents, where there opportunities for what you do in life. But it goes deeper than that. We have core four teachings of a road map which is vision planning, where am I going with all this? Relationships with myself, who’s my posse, who’s my mentors. Finances, how can I master those ABCs I talked about. And wellness, how can I be healthy in my mind, body and spirit to pull off this amazing life I’ve been blessed to live. So 1 Life just helps people at all levels of mastery dream, plan and live their very best life possible.

Brandon: That’s cool. Who are you targeting primarily? Because I know you’re doing schools, is that right? Or is it younger people, is it older?

Tim: That’s our challenge. Because everybody deserves 1 Life fully lived. So, our business model is we help people like the Bigger Pockets people. People where are on their way, well on their way and at a mastery level we help you crush your life in those four areas. The vision planning, relationships, finance and wellness, so your wealthier, healthier, happier and get the great feeling of getting out of you and getting to help us lift those that never get this message. That’s our primary mission, is helping those on the bottom end of the totem pole.

Tim: My good friend Christopher Lockhead said at a recent Go Abundance event in Austin, Texas, “When you get to the top of the mountain throw down the rope.” What a great way to put it. That’s what 1 Life’s all about is we’re throwing down the rope of teaching what should be taught in school, or should be taught by parents but unfortunately most are on level one, or at best level two of that financial and life skills knowledge levels. We want to change all of the that, that’s 1 Life.

Brandon: That’s cool. That’s cool. Yeah. It’s admirable because so many people spend, I don’t know, so much time thinking about how they can improve their own life, and how they can improve their own finance, and own wellness. It’s great, we don’t talk about this a lot, but when you get to that level five, or maybe level four, or maybe a little bit earlier. But, when you’re no longer consumed by, “How do I pay my bills?” You can start thinking bigger in terms of, “How do I help other people figure out how to pay their bills?” But most people are too consumed with their own problems in life and looking down on rich people to ever realize maybe getting wealthier is actually the answer to helping more people.

Tim: Right. Yeah. It’s all a virtuous circle of the better I do and enrich my own life, and live my 1 Life fully lived and then I spread this vibe to my family, my community and I bring others along with me. Then when I’m becoming, and I am successful, I feel we have a moral obligation to get out of ourselves, and I call it the gift. My life’s been so enhanced by all the good work we’re doing with 1 Life.

Tim: I got to say, I’m personally … I think I’ve had the biggest journey of anyone I’ve ever met from the most selfish person you’d ever met in their teens, to the most selfless person you’d ever meet. I say that humbly, but I just love to touch others now. It’s such a fulfilling gift to get to this place and then learn how to give in your own way. There’s no better gift. So get financially free everyone.

Brandon: There you go. I love it. All right. Well, I want to move onto the next segment of the show to go a little bit deeper into some real estate. That is specifically through our Deal Deep Dive.

David: Deal Deep Dive.

Brandon: All right. This is the part of the show where we dive deep into one particular deal that you’ve done. Kind of get to know about how you did it. So, do you have a deal in mind? Something that we can pick apart with a bunch of questions?

Tim: Yeah, it’s 450 East Sonoma. I sent it to your producer.

Brandon: Oh. Wow, okay you just did everything. This is great. All right. So, it’s in Sonoma.

Tim: No, no, no. It’s in Stockton, California.

Brandon: Oh. Stockton.

David: Beautiful Stockton. My old stomping grounds. That’s where I went to college.

Brandon: Nice. All right. Well, let’s go through it. What was this property? What kind of property was it?

Tim: It was a fixer upper.

Brandon: Okay.

David: How did you find it?

Tim: I was out doing comps. Somebody wanted me to buy a portfolio of their properties. This is in the early 2000s. I was out doing comps and seeing if that was a good deal or not. I see somebody with their back to me and it looked like a sombrero on their head working in front of their house. I said, [Foreign Language 00:41:58]? He said, “I’m black, not Mexican.” So I started off on the right foot.

Brandon: Yeah. It was great.

Tim: I said, “Why are you fixing your home?” He said, “I’m selling it.” Do you guys want to keep asking me questions, or?

David: Yeah we will.

Brandon: No, you can keep going. Yeah. We will but I want to hear the rest of this.

Tim: Okay. So, I said, “So are you … ” He said, “Yeah, I’m fixing it to sell it.” I said, “Do you have a buyer?” He said, “I do.” I said, “Have you signed a contract?” He said, “I have not.” I said, “How much are you selling it for?” He said, “55,000.” I thought, “Holy crimeny this things worth more.” I said, “You haven’t signed a contract?” He said, “No.” I said, “I have a contract in the car, if I were to give you 5,000 more would you sign a contract?” He goes, “Well, the guy was kind of flakey and my wife really didn’t like him. Will you pay cash?” I said, “I will.” I put him in the car, drove him over to his wife’s and signed the deal right there.

Brandon: That’s cool.

Tim: That’s a good point there. Have contracts with you.

Brandon: Yeah. That’s great.

David: I love that you just went for it in that moment. I mean, there’s no time to think, there’s no analysis paralysis, it’s, “I’ll give you 5,000 more how does that sound? Okay. Let me get the deal out of the car.” I think we over think things so often, and that person was just like, “I was happy with 55, I’ll take 60.” And boom.

Tim: Yeah. And there’s just a lot of good … I love that story. I’m out looking at other deals, I see an opportunity and I ask. I totally butcher it, which is a great part of it. If you know Tim Rhode 101 of course I did that. Then I rebound and bond with the guy, and get the contract signed right then. I have contracts with me, I go over to the house, I have his wife sign it right then. There’s just no … Get the deal done.

David: Well, you’re not leaving any space. This is something that I talk to my team about this all the time. I know I’m interrupting your deal deep dive. But I think it’s important for people to hear. When we’re training as police officers for how to control combative subjects what we learn is that if you can manage the distance you can manage the damage. So the more distance that I let that suspect get from me the more he can wind up to punch me, or throw an elbow. If you keep that person really tight and close to you there’s only so much that they can really do to hurt you. It’s not much, it’s like grabbing or maybe biting or something.

David: The same is true in sales or in real estate. If you talk to someone and they want to sell you their house, and they’re like, “Yeah, let’s do it.” And you say, “Okay, I’ll be back tomorrow to sign.” The minute you leave what they start thinking is now there’s space is, “Can I call somebody else and see if they would pay more? Should I talk to my buddy and see if this is a good idea? Should I call my mom, or my dad and see what they do?” By the time you come over tomorrow they’ve got 14 other pieces of input in their head that you got to start all the way over.

David: Tim, what you’re describing is probably what made you so good at a lot of what you did. You did not give the me the space to do that. You said, “You want to get this done, let’s do it.” They’re in a good mood and the contract is signed, and everything’s good. If you give people space you can get hurt.

Tim: Yeah. Another thing is, is you interrupt the flow. There was just a … I went off my instincts a lot. By the way, the reason I could go off of my instincts was, once again, decades of hard work. [inaudible 00:45:25] my propeller, and-

David: You had a sharp saw.

Tim: Yeah. I couldn’t have done this my first year. There’s no way. I didn’t know those comps [inaudible 00:45:35].

Brandon: This is another good reason. We talk a lot about specializing, especially in the beginning. Obviously, you’ve been doing this for decades so you know a lot of different types of real estate. But when you’re in the beginning you get really, really good at one specific thing so that way when those opportunities come up you can make those split second decisions. Because, example if you’re only flipping houses in this market you know what to buy them for, you know what to sell them for. That’s not that much to learn. You could learn that in a few months.

Brandon: Then when those opportunities come up you can make those split second decisions. But if you’re trying to learn everything in the world, and never really get good at anything you’re just kind of a general at everything then you can’t make those decisions. You really do have to think about them because you’re just not good enough. You don’t have the talent there as part of that fulfillment triangle. So, just one more, I guess, thing to pull out of that.

Brandon: So, how did you fund this deal, then? You said 60,000 cash. Did you just pay your own personal cash for it?

Tim: Yeah. By then I had credit lines, and relations built up with … Right around that time with the land, and the path of growth going way up I sold a guys ranch and he netted 800 grand. Gave me that as a credit line at 6%.

Brandon: Oh, wow.

Tim: Yeah. It was good for him, he knew me, liked me. So, just built up relationships and had a lot of stuff like that. But there was one other concept I wanted to talk about that’s like this. Is just what we’re talking about here, maybe you’re really good at talking to people but you don’t have money. Maybe you’re not good at either of those, but you’re good at behind the scene details. I really like finding like minded people who are on the same course. Maybe it’s three of you in an investment club, don’t know what it is. But just finding people who are going to hold up their end and their talented and can help you do what you do better. I love that concept, and I also had a concept for that concept of what I look at when those things come down and I hope I’m not taking up too much time you guys.

Brandon: No, no keep going.

Tim: Okay. So, the three things I look for, for anything, whether I’m getting into the business, whether I’m investing with somebody, whatever it is number one are they competent. I don’t care if they’re honest, if they’re not good. So, number are they competent. Number two, do I really like them and trust them. Because, think about it, we’re getting into bed, we’re getting into a marriage. I better like you because if I’m going to be talking to you [inaudible 00:48:04]. Then number three are you honest and trust worthy. If you don’t fit any of those three I don’t want to do businesses with you.

Brandon: Yeah.

Tim: If you do fit those three, and you have amazing talents that fit, but don’t fit with me let’s find a way to play.

Brandon: That’s cool.

David: Okay. Real quickly back to this property back in Stockton. What did you end up doing with it? Did you flip it, did you keep it as a rental?

Tim: Yeah. I flipped it, I had my team fix it up. We had some concerns, there was some terrible farm smells we weren’t [inaudible 00:48:40]. But, we fixed it up-

David: You didn’t have time to do the sniff check before you had that guy sign the contract out of your truck.

Tim: Oh, no. Yeah. There were things with … The railroad was pretty close. There were just some disclosure things that I made sure to put on.

Brandon: So what was the outcome, then?

Tim: I think I netted $52,000 after paying all the expenses. I sent that deal into your team.

Brandon: That’s awesome.

David: That’s like 100% … I mean, it’s more than 100% profit. Well, I guess if you paid cash it’s about 100% profit. That’s awesome. What lesson did you learn from this deal?

Tim: Just making things happen. Being out in the trenches and shaking trees. Just being in a flow state, and going with what rolls and just taking that and driving away. Can you imagine driving back to my house an hour and a half later talking to my team with a signed contract. Boom. Freaking got the animal over my back.

Brandon: There’s this thing I see in new investors all the time that I don’t see in you, Tim. That is a lot of new investors are just so timid. Not even new investors, just investors in general. People I’ve been with for a decade, they’re so timid and afraid to make a decision, or to make an offer, or to go after something. To have that conversation on the phone. People are so afraid of shooting their shot to go out there and get it. Why are you not like that? How can somebody become more like you?

Tim: This is a good point. I have a very high risk tolerance. But I went 98 and two. Like, I bought 100 properties and made money on 98 of them. So, I had really good instincts on when to buy and I’ll bet I had something in that contract. If I found something within five days I could back out.

Brandon: Yep. Yeah.

Tim: Yeah. So, I have big cahones, with an out clause.

Brandon: Yes. That’s what a lot of … I’ll be teaching webinars, I do a webinar every week on Bigger Pockets. I’ll be teaching and I’ll say, “I try to make an offer every single week. Every week I make at least one offer. If I stick to that usually one out of every few ends up getting accepted. As long as I stick to the lead measure, right.” People will say, “Yeah, but what happens if you make an offer and then the next week you make another one and both of them get accepted? Oh no.” Like it’s such a tragic thing. I’m like, “Okay, first of all we have out clauses. Second of all, that’s not a bad problem. That’s a great problem to have.”

David: I know. What if you go on The Price is Right and you win a Ferrari and Lamborghini but you can only pick one. What are you going to-

Brandon: Yeah, oh no.

David: I can’t invest in real estate? That would be horrible.

Brandon: The taxes. Exactly.

David: And the taxes. The maintenance. I can’t get into it-

Brandon: I can’t do it. Yeah. So, anyway. I read recently in the book Traction, they said, “It’s more important that you decide than what you decide.” I really liked that quote. You can’t take it, obviously, too far but the idea of it’s more important that you just make decisions in life. You be bold and go after it, than to just be scared a timid all the time and never take action at all. Because no action-

Tim: Yeah. I like that. But, my mom had a line where she’d say, “I just decided.” There were things … She was a alcoholic. She moved to Santa Barbara. So, I had a lot of sayings in my head thanks to both parents. But, I think that like that measure twice cut once. It’s like I’m in, I’m in, I’m in, and I’m just scouting for why am I out. I’d back out of stuff.

Brandon: Yeah. Cool. All right, dude. Well, let’s get onto the next segment. That was really good deep dive. But now it’s time for the Fire Round.

David: Fire Round.

Tim: Okay.

Brandon: All right. This is the fire round, this is the part of the show where we pull questions direct from the Bigger Pockets forums and we fire them at you, Tim, to see if you can give some advice to some real estate investors on our forum. So, number one, Charles from Bridgeport, Connecticut said, “I’m a young investor getting started. Should I try to buy my own home, or should I just stick with renting? Then I’ve heard a lot about renting where you live, and owning where you rent. What factors would you look at in making that decision?”

Tim: I would … There’s a lot of different … It’s hard to say. I’d not know is your [inaudible 00:53:14], don’t know much about him. But, something that might work for you is like a group home. I have a lot of young friends that do this, where they buy a home and have two of their friends as their tenants. That’s a good way to start where you’re in charge. Then, something you could do off that is have somebody else come manage that home. You buy the next home with two more friends and that one’s taking care of itself.

David: That is exactly what Tim told me 18 years ago that I should do with the first house that I was going to buy. Yeah. Before we called it House Hacking it was Tim Rhodes Group Home Strategy.

Tim: Look at Weeger, and Diego. There’s examples of this model all over the country now.

David: So, Brandon, if I want to learn more about how do to this how can I find out?

Brandon: Wow, David, thanks for asking. So we just launched a book at Bigger Pockets, actually, called The House Hacking Strategy on this very topic. Inspired by this whole idea of buying … Whether it’s a house, or a duplex, triplex, fourplex, anyway it’s by Craig Curelop and you can get it at or wherever books are sold, I think. A least I know it’s going to be eventually at Amazon and Barnes & Noble. But right now I know for sure it’s at biggerpockets.come/househocking or With that question number two.

David: From Benjamin. Benjamin says, “I am a college student looking to buy a triplex for a rental. I saved about 30 grand which is enough to buy the property in cash. But, it needs an additional 50 to 60K in renovation. Since I’m a student I don’t have regular income. How would you go about financing this rehab?”

Tim: I would probably look for somebody in my world. I think, Brandon, you talked about your parents going in with you. That might be a good way for them to … I’d also, If I was that person, take a really good look at the deal and make sure the whole thing makes sense. Because a lot of times what you think is a great deal is a good deal, and good deals turn into bad deals really quick.

Brandon: Yeah, I’m mean-

Tim: Only exceptional and great.

Brandon: Yeah, I was going to say if somebody came to me and I’m not saying … Please don’t everyone listening to this come to me. But, if somebody came to me and was like … Somebody I knew, had a relationship with and said, “Hey, I got 30 grand I want to put down on this property, would you want to partner with me? I’ll do all the work, I’ll do everything, I just need some more money for rehab. But I’m putting in 30 grand, I got skin in the game.” I would have a very good serious conversation with that person. And because I’m an experienced investor I’d be able to look at the deal and say, “Yeah, you shouldn’t do this deal.” If it was good I’d be able to say, “Yeah, actually let’s do this thing together. It’d be fun. I don’t have to do any work, I just got to put in some money and I’m going to make a good … ” So, yeah, go to somebody who’s more experienced. I love that advice. And got some cash. It’s perfect.

David: I was going to say you could always just sell a kidney or something.

Brandon: That works.

David: Do the rehab with that money, and then if you make enough you can just buy another kidney.

Brandon: Isn’t that the Tim Rhode method of just put a really long closing on it. Just be, hey, I’m going to find a way to come up with that 50 or 60 grand.

Tim: And could you exchange for the kidney.

Brandon: There you go, you could.

David: The 1031 like-

Brandon: The 1031 kidney.

Tim: Exactly. Like properties, it’s not like you don’t grow a liver or nothing.

Brandon: All right. Question number three, “Hey all. I’m moving and I want to figure out whether I should sell or rent my house. The property’s been appreciating like crazy, but when I see the numbers I would have negative cash flow every month if I held onto it. So, would you ever hang onto a property with negative cash flow just hoping to gain in equity?”

Tim: It depends on how much the negative is. But, if it’s appreciating at a faster clip than what the negative is boy I always tell people as much and long if you can hold it do. That’s my own thoughts. Many would say just sell it and move on. Don’t have any negative. But, I held some properties with negative cash flows in a way appreciating market for a long time and that turned out a good thing, so.

Brandon: Yeah.

David: That’s a very good transition into question number four. So, I know, Tim, that you kind of got out of the market in that little period between ’05 and ’07. So the question is did you see any warning signs coming? What effect did that downturn have on your investment portfolio, and how did you know it was time to get out?

Tim: I’m so glad we got this question because I track trends because I listed and sold real estate and I had multiple listings service access from 1990 till 2007. I knew every time when it went up, when it went down. How many homes are on the market. How many new listings, how many went pending, how many sold, how many expired. We’d do the … Because I was doing how much work am I doing versus the rest of the board. So, from ’90 to ’97 I didn’t buy much. From ’97 to 2007 I bought a ton. Excuse me till about 2006, and from 2005 to 2007 I sold 17 properties with 52 tenants right into our peak. Yes, I saw it coming because I was in the trenches and it was like a blow off top in the stock market. The last two flips I had done I didn’t make a profit on them. I could just see the market stuttering. You might want to get out a little earlier. I kind of slid into home plate very nicely, and was really lucky actually.

Brandon: That’s cool. On that note, where do you think we are in the cycle right now?

Tim: I think we have some legs to go, believe it or not. I keep hearing, there’s some people in my world that think its run its course and by the end of the year it’s going to hit the fan. I think we’re a good two to four years away. That’s just mine.

Brandon: All right. David where do you think we are?

David: I think the same as Tim. You mentioned earlier, Brandon, you don’t know why people don’t do more subject two financing. I think it’s because interest rates just keep getting pushed down. You don’t need to take over somebody else’s payments because you can get 2% lower on the interest rate if you go do your own thing. I think that, that’s fueling, I don’t want to say a bubble but it’s giving you strong winds at your back.

David: So if you think about right now as interest rates go down it makes the house you live in worth more. Because someone else can pay more to buy it and have the same payment because interest rates are low. It also means that once you sell it you can get a really low interest rate on your next house. The minute that changes, if rates go from 4% to six or seven now no one can pay as much for your house, so it’s worth less when you sell it. And when you go buy a new house you lose your three and a half or 4% rate, and you had to go in at six, six and a half or whatever. So no ones going to want to move.

David: I think if that happens that’s when we’re going to see the market really slow down, and the only people that are going to be buying and selling are people that kind of have to. They move, they need a bigger house because they’re having another kid, traditional reason. Not just these moves that we make right now because they make sense. So as long as interest rates stay low I don’t see anything changing. But that’s one of the markers that I’m looking for is when I see rates start inching up, that’s when I’m going to expect the market to start to slow down.

Brandon: All right. Good answer. All right. Well, before we get out of here, that is the end of the Fire Round. Let’s get to the world famous, famous-

David: Famous Four.

Brandon: All right, this is the last segment of the show where we ask our guests to answer the same four questions that we ask every guest to answer. Question number one, Tim other than your own, which I’ll ask you about in a moment. But, other than your own do you have a favorite real estate related book? Something related for real estate investors.

Tim: Yeah. It’s an old classic, Fixing Ugly Homes for Cash by Jay DeCima. You guys ever heard of that?

Brandon: Yeah, Fixer Jay. I’ve read a couple books of his. Yeah, they’re good.

Tim: Isn’t it just a great basics how to?

Brandon: Yep. There you go. All right.

David: All right, cool. What’s your favorite business book?

Tim: I like The E-Myth because one I fully lived is The E-Myth for life. It’s kind of like the inner core workings. So, I love The E-Myth. I think it’s amazing.

David: Okay. I know you’re going to love this question. What are some of your hobbies?

Tim: Just anything outdoors. We talked about whether you’re alone or with others it’s just there’s no sound in life as rare and beautiful as the sound of the adult when you’re out getting the goods in the woods. Or, whatever it is for you just enjoying. That to me is … It’s fulfillment and what life’s all about.

Brandon: That’s great. Number four, what do you think sets apart successful real estate investors from all those who give up, they fail, or they just never get started?

Tim: I think to discern between a … I said it before, you can’t have a good deal because it could quickly turn into a bad deal. So, you got to find only the great deals and the good deals. The discernment in that is so important, and that’s the reason to hit your numbers and to do a lot of prospecting and wind the heck out of your propeller.

Brandon: Yeah, that’s awesome.

David: That’s really good. All right, Tim. This has been an amazing time. Can you tell us where can people find out more about you and your non-profit?

Tim: Yeah. Please, first of all, read Tribe of Millionaires, you can see it off to the side here. That’s our new book from my buddies at GoBundance. Please check out It’s my baby, it’s my life’s work. If you want to support us join the 1 Life Community on Facebook, it’s the number one, 1 Life Community on Facebook. Also, please come to one of our six events in 2020. We’re going to have 1 Life Thrive events all over the country, and please consider joining our contributor club which is also on our website under support. That way we can get you coaches in real estate, and our core areas of teaching of vision planning, relationships, finance, and wellness and help you crush your life so you can help us throw down rope. Thank you.

Brandon: Awesome dude. All right, well, thank you Tim. This has been fantastic today. Really, really enjoyed having you, learning more about your story and just hearing about how you’re giving back and helping people who maybe haven’t even thought about financial freedom. Or about living their best life. Because we only have one life, so let’s live it right. I love that you’re teaching that. So, thank you for joining us.

Tim: Yeah. My sincere pleasure, and it was especially fun to be on with Greenie after, gosh, knowing him … Let’s think about that. Half his life.

Brandon: Yeah, crazy.

Tim: All right. Thank you guys. I appreciate you having me on. Dream, plan, live it. Check us out at Thank you.

David: Thank you Tim.

Brandon: Thanks Tim.

Brandon: All right. That was the interview with Mr. Tim Rhode. That was awesome. I see why he made such a big impact on you at an early age, David. That was really cool. He gets that financial independence, that financial freedom. As somebody who’s not just on the front end of it, but who has gone through the entire journey and he can see it from a 40,000 foot level now, which is super cool to have those guys on the show.

David: Yeah. He’s kind of the Barry Sanders of real estate. He walked in, he completely dominated, and then he just said at 40-years old, “Okay, I’m done. I’m just going to make it out.” He did it on his terms. I love, love, love the emphasis he puts on defense. If you ask Tim he will tell you, “I could have made all the money in the world. It wouldn’t have matter. It only mattered that I saved money so that I could invest it.” The only metric that really matters is what you have left over to invest after you make all your money.

Brandon: Yeah. There you go. Very, very cool. Well, before we get out of there we’re going to add one more little segment of the show here, which I think we did once before. But we’re going to try to make it a more regular thing. That is to highlight some of our Bigger Pockets pro members out there doing deals.

Brandon: So today I’m going to give you a quick story about April Childers, or Childers. I’m hoping I’m saying it Childers, right. From McEwen, Tennesse. Recently did her first deal, a new construction deal. She bought a two acre lot, split it into two and then built a single family home on one of the lots. Then she sold the second lot off. Purchase price, get this. You guys are going to love this. Purchase price, $65,000. Cash invested, 97,000. Sale price, 243,000. Sold in four days. She also listed it herself because she decided to become a real estate agent. So very cool story. Congratulations April on your first deal.

Brandon: This is a reminder, everybody, get out there, get active on the forums. Every day Bigger Pockets pro members like April are writing about the deals that they’re doing on the Bigger Pockets Success Story Forum. So, if you are not on the forums you should definitely be so.

Brandon: Also, if you want to be featured on this segment of the show do me a favor, write down this. Ready? Write down the email address [email protected] If you are a Bigger Pockets pro member shoot us an email at [email protected] with the subject line Pro Deal, P-R-O D-E-A-L, and give us the details. We are going to feature one every week, a story about one of our members doing an awesome real estate deal. So, again, email us [email protected] and put Pro Deal into the subject line.

Brandon: That’s all I got.

David: Sounds great. Let’s get out of here man. This is David for Taking the Tim out of Timid Rhode, and Brandon Tesla Turner signing off.

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In This Episode We Cover:

  • Levels of risk tolerance
  • Delegating things you’re not good at
  • How he got into real estate sales
  • Playing great “defense”
  • Not caring about what others think
  • How he invested everything left over that he didn’t spend
  • How he bought his first property—a triple wide mobile home—for 50 cents on the dollar
  • Using his influence as a broker to get great deals before they hit the market
  • How he bought land in the path of progress
  • How he exchanged several good deals by “trading up” into a triple net lease commercial property out of state
  • His philosophy on timing markets
  • His “fulfillment triangle”
  • The power of the 1031 exchange
  • Which houses he flipped and which he kept
  • How he retired at 40 years old
  • The multiple levels of financial freedom
  • The financial freedom principles he teaches in his non-profit
  • Where he believes we are in the current market cycle
  • And SO much more!

Links from the Show

Books Mentioned in this Show

Tweetable Topics:

  • “Sometimes what you think of as a great deal is just a good deal, and good deals can turn into bad deals really quick.” (Tweet This!)

Connect with Tim