Looking back, everything is so clear, right?
Let’s talk about the number one thing I wish I knew before I started investing in real estate. Here we go.
Guys, I think it’s very important that you know exactly what you want from investing in real estate before you ever start. What I mean by that is, why are you actually doing it?
What Do You Want From Investing in Real Estate?
I’m going to make an assumption and say that it’s passive income and financial freedom. That is what most investors are usually looking for. Then, my next question is how much passive income do you need to live the life that you want to live? How much is enough?
Once you have estimated these things, then you can start your real estate investment journey. Then, you can go down a path where every transaction that you do can get you a step closer to achieving your goals or financial freedom through passive income.
When I started my journey, I made a lot of mistakes. Like we all do, right? You don’t know what you’re doing, or how you’re doing it. And you don’t really know why you’re doing it!
So, you make mistakes. But eventually, you figure things out. For example, I was accumulating a lot of properties without having a purpose for doing it. I guess it was cool when I was 21 or 22 years old and started investing to call myself a “real estate investor.” Even though I had a lot of quantity in my portfolio with all of these assets, they weren’t making me that much money. What I did was just a mistake.
Once again, I think it’s very important to figure out these things before you begin on your investment journey.
So, the number one thing that I wish I knew before I started my real estate investment journey was how much of a monster it would actually become. Like a lot of you out there, it started off in a pretty simple way: Find a house, fix it, sell it, or hold it—and keep doing that over and over again. Keep doing that until I reach a certain point from a passive income standpoint.
Well, as with anything in business, you kind of get sucked into the wonderful world of real estate. One thing leads to another. Then before you know it, you hire your first person, then you hire another one, then you have five people. Then, you have to set up in-house property management because you want to keep the customer in the entire cycle of the business operation.
All of a sudden, you have property management, and then you want to have a real estate brokerage and agents to help with the sales of some of these homes. Then, you start having a maintenance company and a construction crew. The monster starts to have a lot of heads, and it’s very hard to tame a monster.
I got carried away a couple of years ago, where we started building a very big monster with a lot of heads. Luckily, we were very quick to nip that in the bud and hold our horses—because it wasn’t fun anymore. It was overwhelming; then, we became burnt out. And that’s not why you ultimately invest in real estate.
It’s supposed to make your life happier, easier, and better. That’s why it’s very important that you know up front exactly what you’re getting yourself into. Why are you starting your journey, and how much is enough? How much do you need?
The Bottom Line
There is a beautiful saying out there: “Less is more.” Focus on your needs, and forget about your wants.
When you think about it, as human beings, we don’t really need that much. We need food, shelter, a bed, a good night’s sleep, family, and love. We don’t really need a fancy car, a mansion, a boat, or a holiday home… right?
So, some things to consider (coming from someone who’s had it all and done a lot of deals) are: if I could turn back time, I would be a little more controlled in my growth aspirations. I would not create a conglomerate company with so many moving parts. I wouldn’t expand into another market. A lot of these things were not necessary.
We’re in a good place now. We’re in one market. We’re limited to how much business we want to do, and things are pretty good now.
Do you have any questions for me about this advice?
Leave your comments and questions below!
Note By BiggerPockets: These are opinions written by the author and do not necessarily represent the opinions of BiggerPockets.