Afraid of falling behind

8 Replies

Hi everyone!

I've only come across real estate investing about 2 months ago when I got my first full-time job and was searching for ways to become financially stable and independent. I have never found something that I have wanted to truly and desperately pursue until now and have been absolutely addicted to soaking in as much information as I can.

I've been knocking out blogs and forum threads whenever I even have a little bit of extra time and have gone as far as sneaking wireless earbuds under my beanie so that I can listen to 3-4 podcast during my work hours.

I've been slowly looking at my local market and analyzing a few deals and always fantasizing about ways of how I could make it work to possibly acquire them at that current moment, but there are some obstacles I need to push through first.

I have a balance of a couple grand on some credit cards(no missed payments) that I've been rapidly trying to tackle as this is my first step into opening more possible options of an early purchase even if I may not have a downpayment stocked up.

Before, my initial plan was to keep on learning and educating myself with as much information that I could while saving up enough cash in order for me to be ready to house hack a property by the beginning of next year, but as I've started to learn more and more, I can't help but want to get into the process as soon as I can.

I'm only 20 so technically I do have a lot of time to prepare, but I still feel as though I'm behind just because of how fast real estate investing is growing and in a time where markets are already hot.

Maybe it's just reassurance that I need to hear that "I will be okay" even if I were to join the game a year later. This is just something I've wanted to express for these past couple weeks now.

Hey Williaam,

It's great to hear that you're getting started so young! I had no idea what financial stability or independence even meant at the age of 20. Agree that paying off those credit cards is a good first start and definitely invest in your own education. There's always more to learn!

You are 20 years old, negative net worth, just started learning 2 months ago. You are passionate about an industry that is getting a lot of hype right now due to the RE bubble. The smart money is on the sidelines waiting for a correction. Pay off your debts, save up a down payment, investigate any special financing programs you may qualify for. This will take 2 years. Then you start shopping for a house you can house hack. I bought my first house in the 1980s when interest rates were 16%. Every generation has it challenges.

Suggested reading: 'The Millionaire Next Door'.  Your success doesn't depend on starting to invest immediately, but getting on the right path/process that will take you there.

You are not joining the game late, quite the opposite. Focus on learning, networking, and saving. When the markets reverse the person with the most cash wins. The only certainty you can ever have with any financial market is that it will fluctuate. 


I can definitely relate to this post. I am also a young guy looking to get some investments on my balance sheet just like you. That's actually a good place to start for you - if you don't already, you should track your net worth with a personal balance sheet. You should update it every month or week if you want. Each time you pay down your debt, you'll see that your net worth goes up. All the money that you save will bring your net worth up. Any loans you have that you're paying down will reflect in your net worth each time you make a payment. So that is a great way to track your progress and get a good sense of where you TRULY stand financially. I use the template found in The Millionaire Real Estate Investor by Gary Keller which is a great book to read by the way. If you haven't read it already I suggest you do that.

Another great book to read which I think will reaffirm your confidence in what you're doing is The Richest Man in Babylon. It was a little annoying to read for me because it's written in old English but the lessons in it are invaluable in my opinion. For example. One of the stories teach you that you should set aside at least 10% of all your income to invest in assets - before you pay anyone else.

I struggle with the fear that we're running out of time as-well. But this is how I calm myself down - real estate investors have been around in one way or another since the beginning of written history, as far as we know. Its not going anywhere. People will always need a place to live and properties will always physically depreciate (nothing lasts forever). There will always be opportunity. Plus, we're Millennials. I don't think many people in our generation plan to buy houses now or anytime soon. I think, and this is only my opinion, that the lack of home owners in our generation will benefit you and I with our goals to becoming buy and hold investors. Only time will tell.

Keep moving,


I love it!!! You are 20 and you can see through all the BS of being like everyone else! I would not worry about rushing into a deal and gathering enough self funding. Your first deal may be your most important as it will springboard you into the rest of your deals. While you make money and save for that first deal continue to gather knowledge, make friends in the business and look for someone who can mentor you. Also, look into finding people are willing to do personal funding. Tell them they will get first position on the property and you will pay them a nice interest rate. Join a local Real estate association to find the these resources.

@Bettina F. Thanks so much for your insight! Those are very true conditions that I have to take into account and am currently working on. It'd be great if I didn't have to stretch it out to 2 years just because how much I'm itching to take off, but the future is always unpredictable and I should definitely be good financial standing before I get ready to take on this journey. 

@Eric James Hey Eric, I hear that book recommended all the time on podcast and blogs so I will definitely take the time to check it out. There is just so much information to consume and hopefully I can find best path that works for me! Thank you!

@Ian Tvardovskaya Thanks Ian, those should definitely be my main focuses right now and I will continue to improve on them. What exactly do you mean when you say "when the markets reverse."

@Sherif K. This is exactly what I needed to hear! I actually have started an excel balance spreadsheet recently to track all my transactions, expenses, assets, as well as a formula for a Debt Snowball in order to get those credit cards paid off. I agree,  it's been a great help and I look forward to budgeting, tracking and lower my expenses for the upcoming months!

There's definitely a ton of books that are constantly referred to in the BiggerPockets community and I do plan on finding the time to sit down and read them. I don't know exactly how great books are through listening by audio, but maybe if it's as engaging as reading an actual book, I could knock out more books this way.

I really appreciate your advice though, I feel much more relaxed knowing that facts you provided. I can now focus more on building my foundation of knowledge and funds rather than fearing about falling behind.

Here’s to our future endeavors!

@Todd J Killian Thank you very much for the advice! I had my fun in college for the last 2 years and am just glad that I got out early and am finally taking my future seriously for once! I definitely do need to start networking that is something that I haven't really focused on and know that it would greatly be beneficial for me the sooner I get started!

Markets go up and down. Doesn't matter if its stocks or real estate. When markets fall those with cash get to buy everything on sale! 

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