Negative reactions from friends and family

74 Replies

If you want to know, who truly supports you and who believes you can better yourself - let them know your going to invest into income properties. 

My family was worried about it initially. They just wanted to make sure we went in with our eyes open. They listened when we went over the numbers, our plans and asked relevant questions.They don't assume we are slumlords or awful people. They have faith that we will make good decisions and I can call on them for advice. They are happy to hear about our success. 

Some of his family have been very unsupportive and snarky about his real estate investments. 

@Roger Hefner   I tell fellow Veteran friends to look into becoming a landlord to supplement their income. Most of my veteran friends are receptive to the idea - they don't scare easy. My friends that share my chronic health conditions won't consider becoming a landlord, I can understand not having the funding but the ones that are still working should seriously look into it. Most chronic health conditions will only get worse - if they invest in their own income properties while they can still work - they can help secure a better future when they can no longer work full time. That disability income from insurance only lasts so long and SSDI is hard to get and little money to live on. 

Originally posted by @Elliott Elkhoury :

@Michael Ryland oh hey, you're a local! 

I've gotten nothing but concerned, negative reactions from family about this. And from a lot of friends. Eventually, after seeing enough success, they all jumped on board though. I'd say be happy that people have generally skeptical responses to your good idea- it limits your competition. 

I would say the concerns of over leveraging and people in CA having no idea how to run numbers on OOS properties is pretty common. Everything seems relatively cheap to us, and I catch a lot of investors I work with buying bad deals which they perceive to be good because they're better than the ones out here.

Lately I've been quite adamant about NEVER talking about business to people that are not already onboard with the idea, or interested in it. It keeps people's minds off the subject of my financial success- which I've found beneficial amongst friends and even family. 

Best quote is from my mom, after I flipped 37 small multis last year: 


"Are you sure you don't want to go back to school and get your masters?" LOL

 That’s hilarious. You should tell her you don’t need one, you’ll hire someone that already has one lol. 

None of my family and in-law members have real estate investments, just their own personal residence.  Many don't understand how to purchase commercial and multifamily properties, and also don't understand the mechanics of revenue/expense associated with running this business.  I have gotten comments such as slumlord, toilet calls in the middle of the night?, you might lose your shirt when the economy crashes, remember what happened in 2008? and it goes on.

I think it's the mindset that is difficult for others to grasp.   Financial freedom, passive income or whatever you want to call it.  Most are content and feel secure with their w2 paycheck and 401k retirement. THAT boggles my mind.  Others are either lazy or too frightened to figure this real estate thing out.

Reminds me of my favorite quote:

Ray Kroc, the guy responsible for McDonald's growth:

"Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common that unsuccessful individuals with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent."

I am now fixing up properties to rent, hoping to have some ready in June.  Already a friend has asked if her cousin, who is always down and out can have "half price rent because when the rent is too high he just gets evicted because he can not afford it."

I told her that I was so sorry, but I never rent to friends, family, friends of friends, or family of friends....  I do not rent to folks with a history of evictions, their income must be 3 times the rent and verifiable, etc.

Then she said that I only care about money, well yep, its a business not a charity.

@Chris Mason I'm all for financial education in HS but at the same time I think we parents need to accept responsibility for educating our kids in the most important realms: spiritually, morally, relationally and financially.  

Oh, I can relate to that... 

- Are you going now to be like uncle "Piro" (one of my uncles that is doing good in REI business and construction company like forever)? His personality is suuuper very business oriented, even with very close family.

This comment came form several of my cousins, which, because of the "believes" and particularly in a very conservative setting, we, including myself and cousins, were thought that "rich" people do not have a welcome place in Heaven.... 

My answer was, apart from laughing:  I'm not rich, I'm working hard to retire earlier, and no, I will not be like uncle Piro.  I'm unique, and yes, business are business, but I'm not going to take business at a personal level every time with family, and I do believe if you do good in live, you should share and help others the best you can.  Is just like any other job you have and what you can do to be a better person.  

I don't get a lot of negativity. My family already KNOWS I'm crazy and they like to hear crazy tenant stories which always end with:

Someday, ALL THIS WILL BE YOURS bahahahahahah

@Michael Ryland

That slumlord comment really gets me piss, I have a manager at my job who made that comment to me more than twice, I call these people haters, which means I’m doing something right!

Buying my first property was the best decision of my life, despite all the negative reactions I got from people.

We are taking risks that other people are afraid to do, thus receiving backlash, I look at it like this, when people make negative comments about what I’m doing in life that it’s not about me, It’s about them and there insecurities.

Congrats on your two properties, I’m at two now myself, Keep Pushing and don’t let people opinions get to you!

@Michael Ryland

"I don't want to fix toilets for a living."

By far, that's my favorite response. And,I don't,that's what my property manager is for.

Great book quote and recommendation as well. Lots of nuggets there in. First third is mindset, which is really important based on all the fear I hear out there.

Family Member:  The tenant should be responsible for cutting their own grass. Why would you cut it? 

Me:  It allows me to see what's going on at my property.  They may not be responsible enough to maintain the little bit that's there.  Then I'll have code enforcement on my behind and not them.  I see it as a win-win.

I've looked at the pros and cons of all the negative or concerning comments from family and friends, but it's my tail that's on the line.  No one else's name is on the mortgage but me so I have to do what's best for my investment.

I didn't read all the responses, but I do disagree with several that basically said; "don't tell anybody what you do". As a matter of fact, that goes directly against what Brandon Turner says to do. His advice is "tell everybody" what you're up to and opportunities may happen (or something to that effect). It doesn't mean you have to go into your financial statements or every detail. I followed Brandon's advice and I had two friends say they wanted in on real estate investments. Last year we formed an LLC together and the three of us purchased a property in December and are currently looking for more.

You are always going to get the "oh, you're a slumlord" reactions, even from family and friends. They think they're being original and funny. I just respond; "ya, slumlord millionaire", and move on with the conversation. And then there are some people that are just jealous and simply don't understand, or they are too scared to make such an investment. That's ok, it's not for everybody. 

@Michael Ryland

We get a lot of not so supportive comments.

“If we made your money we could do that too” —we work extremely hard in has & oil currently. We travel nonstop working 6-7 days a week 10-12 hours a day.

“Do don’t have your own home but you have rental properties” —again we work on the road and live in a 45 ft toy hauler that’s worth more than most our friends houses.

“So you’re just going to live off rent money” —they seem to forget that there is still lots of work in managing and maintaining these properties.

Over all I try to encourage them to do research. I suggest they look up a few different people I’ve found through bigger pockets. Lastly I point out that we work extremely hard and that’s a job you don’t want to do until you’re 70 years old. We aim to be totally off the road within 5 years and managing our properties with a few other streams of income. If they worked like we did they could do the same things we do. I’ve also found that I no longer talk about things like work/money/goals etc...with good portion of my friends and family.

Originally posted by @Frank Jiang :

Real estate is just a vessel.  There is a right way to do it and a wrong way to do it.  I recently gave negative feedback to another couple's real estate ventures when I heard that they had gone to one of those upsell seminars and were buying some sort of tax lien software.

I agree that most of the negative reactions from the general populace are just lack of financial education, but sometimes negative reactions are well deserved.

Also, what kind of people are you guys surrounding yourself with?  The only reaction I ever get is "I want to do that."

Same here...I only get positive reactions. I'm not sure what it is...or perhaps it's a location thing, but I have NEVER had a negative reaction from anyone I told. I generally try not to advertise what I do except to folks I know have money, but even when it slips out somehow, I only get very positive reactions. And many people ask for advice or ask a ton of questions or say something along the lines of, 'let's talk sometime' or 'you must be all set for retirement'. I have never met a person who thinks investing in real estate is a bad thing....but then again, I've lived in CA my entire life.

Also, IMO real estate seminars are a waste of time and particularly a waste of your money. If you can't figure it out via this forum or the internet in general, then a seminar in which you plunk down your hard earned money isn't going to do much for you either.

I get either negative or skeptical reactions when the person learns I’m a landlord which is fine because the lion doesn’t lose sleep over the opinions of the sheep ! I’ve gotten to where I don’t tell people about it anymore unless it’s close family or fellow investors . I have to come to embrace my new moniker ( slumlord). It actually kinda has a nice ring to it off the lips ! I’m okay with the negative response , it feeds my drive . My haters are my motivators these days .

Originally posted by @Niels Bjørn Toppenberg :

@Chris Mason

Good points!! Specially considering all the useless things you learn in school!

I bought the Rich Dad Poor Dad bord game and I strongly belive that it should be mandatory to play in schools.

 My only beef with that would be that it's too pro real estate. I'm pro real estate, why would I have an issue with that? Whatever we use to teach financial literacy should be "wealth vehicle" neutral.... for some people, index funds paired with an engineering degree paired with hard work genuinely makes the most sense, etc, and RDPD wouldn't capture or convey that.

Truth be told many of the comments from naysayers do ring true to some degree. It is what we accept as part of the job of investing and/or being a landlord.

Bad tenats, maintiance issues, calls at bad times etc.

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