Real Estate Is Like A Roller Coaster (Learn To Enjoy The Ride!)

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Fellow Investors, are you enjoying the Roller Coaster?

If you are actively investing in any capacity, you are on a roller coaster!

My question to all of us is….Are you enjoying the ride?

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Where I Have Been And What Have I’ve Been Up To?

I have not written consistently for many months now, but I read or at least skim all of the articles.

What a great collection of industry leaders Josh and Brandon have pulled together here at Bigger Pockets. When I stopped writing we were extremely busy and I was not making the time.

We closed out 2013 with 45 flips and that was occupying most of my time, even with a good (decent) system in place. We went from being incredibly swamped, to moving at a glacial pace for the next several months.


Well, rather than spend much time on that answer, we decided to add more money to marketing and to continue to grow. Last week we purchased what appears to be a WHALE for us. I will post more about it as it plays out, but it is the kind of deal that many of us search for and don’t often find. If I had jumped off the ride when it was slow, we would have never found that deal.

In my opinion, investing mirrors life in so many ways. Life is full of ups and downs, but we press on. The same is so true with our businesses. No matter what your specialty is, if you are all in and really working it, you WILL have consistent ups and downs.

Don’t Get Off The Ride!

The secret from those of us who have achieved a certain level of success is this:

Don’t get off the ride because it is slow or seems to be at a stop, ever!

Sometimes you will even need to get out and push that sucker to get it moving again, and most likely that will be the really HARD part. (Imagine paying for that ride?…Wait, I have to get off and do WHAT if it stops??) I do not know the actual number but my guess is that close to 99% of all people quit when the going gets tough.

Related: Want To Be The Best? Maybe You Should Start Quitting!

I get it, the hard stuff is hard, no two ways around it. But what most people don’t realize is that great things are just on the other side of the hard stuff.

What Are Some Hard Things In Your World?

Here are some of mine:

  • A Deal falls through and you needed the money
  • Lose money on a flip you thought was solid
  • People stealing money and/or supplies
  • Contractors give you a hard time
  • Contractors give you a hard time
  • Contractors give you a hard time
  • Contractors give you a hard time
  • Did I mention contractors giving you a hard time?? (you fellow investors are all smiling right now … I can feel it!)
  • A house does not get offers for several months despite your best attempts
  • You have to fire employees or contractors (they can be tough you know!)
  • Sellers decide they will not sell to “a Flipper” (this recently happened to me for the first time, and I loved the deal so it was very aggravating)
  • Marketing plan does not pan out as expected
  • and on and on…

Anybody can enjoy the ride when it is easy, and full of all the great and fun parts:

  • Selling a deal for full price before it hits the market
  • Making a solid profit $50k- $100K+
  • Being flush with cash from steady business successes
  • Press finds you and writes very favorable articles about you
  • Investors come from everywhere to give you money to invest
  • Sellers take your first offer with no counter
  • Having more leads than you know what to do with

We all invest to experience the great and fun parts we have heard about. Lets be honest, we never start by saying, “I can’t wait until I lose money on a deal! It’ll be AWESOME to lose it all!!!!!”

If you did start with that mindset, you may want to seek professional mental help! We all start for the fun and positive sides of investing, but what most don’t tell you is that investing is exactly like life, you have to experience the hard parts to appreciate and even be in a position to have the great parts.

If you don’t eat right and feel the burn of exercise, odds are you won’t be in good shape. If you don’t train hard for a marathon you will most likely fail miserably. Most people don’t do the work required long enough and smart enough to experience all the greatness they can enjoy.

Related: 14 Things Every Real Estate Investor Should Do Every Single Day

If you get off the ride when it tells you to get out and push, your ride is over, simple as that. For those of you who are in the back pushing your ride right now, my hat goes off to you and you have my respect.

Learn to enjoy the roller coaster with all of it’s ups and downs. The downs can be tough if you allow them to be, but the highs will be a ton of fun if you stay on long enough.

When you hit them, learn to take them in and enjoy, because they don’t last forever. Hey if you want the slow and steady ride, there is always the merry-go-round!

It goes round and round with no highs and lows, it is the safe road that many of your friends are on. Most of us call it a JOB. Nothing wrong with it, it goes round and round and is very predictable. For me, I will stay on the roller coaster and keep working for those high’s, because they are so worth it!

Anybody care to join me?

Be sure to leave your comments below!

About Author

Glenn Schworm

Glenn and his wife Amber are the owners of Signature Home Buyers , located in upstate New York. They have bought and sold over 100 houses and counting since beginning in 2008. They are also the proud parents of 3 amazing kids and love to travel the globe, scuba dive, skydive and basically live life to the fullest!


  1. Cory Binsfield on

    Great article! I’d like to add that sometimes you need to step off the roller coaster and take a short break.

    I’ve been riding the mother of all roller coasters over the past four years in order to capitalize on the housing bust. After purchasing an additional 38 buy and hold units, I’m slowing down to work on the business instead of constantly ramping up the portfolio.

    Clearly, this won’t work if you are a flipper. Yet, by stopping and assessing where I’m at and where I want to be, I can build the foundation for the next roller coaster ride.

    Frankly, it’s not about getting bigger but getting better!

    For those newbies out there, I can’t agree more with the concept of getting out and pushing your business vehicle when you run out of gas.

    When the banks quit lending and I was drooling over all the deals during the housing crash, I had to get creative and find owner financed properties. Everyone thought I was nuts (including my bankers).

    Fortunately, I kept pushing my stalled real estate portfolio and set the stage for the purchase of these 38 units.

    Enjoy the ride!

  2. Sharon Tzib on

    Well you came back with a bang, Glenn! What an awesome and inspiring article – something I need right now. Life has thrown me a non-real estate related curve ball, and it would be easy to wallow in self-pity and give up, but I’m sticking this thing out and it will all work out in the end – I can just feel it. No way I’m getting off the ride 🙂

    Can’t wait to hear about your big deal!

  3. Great job. Contractors are a pain, and they all think they are worth more than they are…

    I have been accumulating rentals, and have done a flip or two. I have a couple of deals in the works, but not as many as you. Being more of a buy and hold, for long term rental income, if my game.

    At some point, I will sell and ride off into the sunset…

    • Glenn Schworm

      Hey Eric,

      We are working more towards a wholesale business with a dozen or so solid flips a year and the rest buy and hold as I too want to ride off into the sunset with all of my bills and needs paid for. See you there! 🙂


  4. Glen, thanks for the article. I have been doing real estate quite awhile but was not doing it well. I recently bought out my last partner and ramped it up, only to find out I was out of investment gas (money). Now I am like a teenager as soon as I get 5 bucks I run and put in the car and go for a ride. I look forward to the day I have a full tank of gas to work with.
    I especially like the waiting on a house to sale comment. I recently partnered on a fix and flip that has been on the market a little over a month. it is like watching water and waiting for it to boil.

    • Glenn Schworm

      Drop that price to get out and move on tot the next deal! Waiting them out never really seems to go well, houses are only worth what someone is willing to pay for them, and you make less and less each day as you hold them so weigh out everything and sell them quick! I plan to do an article soon on raising private money, that could help you have gas in your call ALL the time. Best of luck!


  5. Rolanda Eldridge on

    Great article!! Whenever the door closes, I start looking for a window…I’m focusing on flips but will continue holding affordable homes for rentals..

  6. Hi Glenn – thanks for the timely article! I’m just recovering from my own big dip due to financing issues. I haven’t given up though – just regrouping.

  7. Welcome back Glenn.
    Great piece to return with.
    Glad to have you back, you were one of my favorites here so it was a bummer when it looked like you had moved on.

    Agree with pretty much everything you said here.
    One exception:
    “?Sellers take your first offer with no counter”

    Might just be me but I don’t get excited about overpaying. 🙂

    • Glenn Schworm

      Thanks Shaun,

      I completely agree, that statement could go on both sides. I too do not usually like it when they take my first offer, but to put it in perspective, my first offer is LOW! Last month we bought a house that was about to be listed for $575,000. The woman wanted out and took our first cash offer of $275,000. I was shocked as I would have paid more! It will be worth about $600K when complete and it needs about $60K worth of work. So all things being equal, I was shocked that she took our first offer. Hope that helps to clear up our perspective on that one!

      • That is a pretty awesome deal!
        Yeah hard to get to disappointed if those numbers hold up. 🙂

        I generally make super low/safe offers as well.
        So besides thinking I may have overpaid if they take the first offer I’d also get scared to death that I somehow missed something big. 🙂

  8. mike kelley

    Solid article…

    Goes by to excellent literature within “Think and Grow Rich”

    Heard this from Michael Gerber, E-Myth Revisited, on podcast and it really has stuck with me…

    “Passion will only get you so far, Persistence and Determination are the drivers of ultimate Success”

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