If you don’t jump, today is going to be just like yesterday! Therefore, our guest, Josh Halverson took a leap of faith – from law enforcement to real estate. He shares his success stories and advises us on how to overcome the fear of investing to secure a safe and enjoyable future. Learn about his biggest real estate challenge, his property management experience, and listen to the advice he has for the new investors.
What You Will Learn About A Leap of Faith – From Law Enforcement to Real Estate:
- What Josh Halverson does for a living and what inspired him to invest in real estate
- His experience with Cash Flow Savvy
- How he feels about the cooperation with other turnkey operators
- His biggest challenge in acquiring the assets
- Why Josh came back to do more deals with Cash Flow Savvy
- The property management experience
- How his father’s real estate story affected him
- The biggest lesson he has taken from investing
- What he would do differently now when he has the experience
- How he gets educated about real estate
- Josh’s advice to new turnkey investors
- His real estate resolutions for 2019
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Speaker 1: This is Theriault Media.
So, you want to be a real estate investor, but you don’t want to do the work. If there were only a way where someone else could do it for you. Now there is. Tune in here each and every Tuesday on The Epic Real Estate Investing Show for Turnkey Tuesdays with your host, Mercedes Torres.
Mercedes Torres: Hello and welcome. Welcome to the first episode of Turnkey Tuesdays. Turnkey Tuesdays is now replacing Turnkey Saturdays, and of course, it is still a part of Epic Real Estate Investing. My name is Mercedes Torres and I am privileged enough to be partners in crime with Mr. Matt Theriault, the guy who created the entire Epic Real Estate empire.
So, for those of you who are tuning in again, welcome back. And for those of you who are new to Turnkey Tuesdays, I created the show because I noticed a rising demand in a small niche in real estate called turnkey. And that caters to busy professionals who understand the importance of real estate, but they either don’t have the time to do it themselves or they simply just don’t want to learn every single detail there is to learn about acquiring real estate investments, or they’re simply flat out scared of investing in real estate despite the fact that they know how lucrative it can be for them.
So, on today’s show, I’m interviewing a gentleman who not only served our country for many years, but he’s now serving in law enforcement and he realized that no matter how hard he works, retirement is looking super grim. Now he’s a total family man and he just doesn’t want to wait until retirement to start leaving his job.
So, his story is a little bit different because he watched his father invest in real estate and he hated it. He saw his father having to deal with crazy tenants and having to deal with replacing air conditioning units and toilets and just having to manage them themselves and he said, I don’t want to do that. And it wasn’t until he turned onto The Epic Real Estate Investing Podcast, or so he shares, that it opened something in his mind that kind of helped him realize my dad was doing it wrong and I’m missing something.
Anyway, I’m going to let Josh share his story, so without further ado, allow me to introduce Josh Halverson from Costa Mesa, California, who’s an amazing gentleman and has become an awesome friend of the show. Josh, how the heck are you bud?
Josh Halverson: I’m good. I’m good. I’m so nervous but I’m good.
Mercedes: Josh, I’ve said many times before, and I say it to all our listeners, hey this is just a conversation between you and I and just a little bit of sharing about your journey with real estate. That’s it. So take a deep breath and let’s go. Josh, so why don’t you introduce yourself and tell me a little bit about you.
Josh: Okay. Well, my name is Josh Halverson. I’m from Costa Mesa, California so I’m pretty close to you. I’m pretty much a family guy, former military guy and now a law enforcement guy. And now it’s time to get out of the rat race.
Mercedes: I love it. I love it. So you’re jumping in from military to law enforcement and now to real estate. Why real estate and specifically why now?
Josh: Well, my dad owned a fourplex of apartments growing up and I saw how he did it and it totally turned me off from real estate, so I was like, no way am I going to swing a hammer all the time. But then getting into the podcast and listening to Epic Real Estate and Cash Flow Savvy, and I was totally excited. I have read the book, Rich Dad, Poor Dad, and I totally got it, but it just didn’t click in my 20s.
But then I saw how my retirement was going and I’m like, wow, this isn’t gonna work. Even a million bucks is going to be nothing to live on in retirement. So I’m like, wow, I need to do something different, and I got totally excited with podcasts. So that was my go to. I got to jump in, and it took a few years, but hey, I’m finally getting into it.
Mercedes: It did take a few years, Josh, I remember speaking to you several years ago and you know what? It’s perfectly normal. You said it took a few years, so you saw your dad do it and you didn’t want to do it the way your dad did it. So what made you decide finally, okay, I’m going to try this, despite the fact that I didn’t have the best viewing experience with my dad?
Josh: I guess it’s just connecting with either Matt or you through the podcasts and finally taking a leap of faith because man, I’m scared. I’m scared to get into, but I noticed that I’m scared of my future more than that. So I just said, hey, I’m going to jump in and here I am. I just went for it.
Mercedes: You do live in California and a million dollars in California is absolutely nothing. A million dollars is a lot of money, but when you look at the grand scheme of things, you have a family, you have two girls and you have to think about college and you’re still super young. So you’re really lucky, Josh, that you had that realization early on. I love that you said that what connected you was the podcast. So walk me through that. You listen to the podcast, you have the experience with your dad not being the best experience. What made you decide, okay, I’m going to reach out to this Matt Theriault and Mercedes Torres and see what they’re up to, see if they actually answer the phone.
Josh: That was true. I was like are you really going to talk to me? And then when I called you answered, and I’m like wow, you actually answered the phone, I’m talking to you.
Mercedes: I find that so funny Josh. I get that all the time. They’re like, you actually pick up the phone? Yeah, well I do. That’s what the phone is for, isn’t it?
Josh: I remember being on a trip for work and you said here’s my number and everything called me this and everything and I called you and then you didn’t answer at first and I think it was supposed to get back to you or something. And you answered the phone and it was like 9:00 at night. That was like what no way! She answered the phone again. So just the communication, the personal communication that made me come back and want to do this even more.
Mercedes: Got It. Okay. So I understand that you realized your retirement and there’s lots of way of creating passive income. What made you decide that real estate was the method for you considering you had such a bad experience watching dad?
Josh: I knew the numbers with my mutual funds and stocks and I can see that it wasn’t enough, that was it. There’s got to be something better. As I listened to these podcasts and they broke it down on different returns, you’ve got the multiple returns with like, gosh, what is it? The five returns of real estate taxes and the cash flow, I’m like, wow. And I saw these, these proformas and I’m like, this is so much better. How can I lose? I see how my dad’s property, his personal residence, how it appreciated and he didn’t do anything. All he did was stay there and pay his mortgage. And I’m like how can I have multiple of these? So that was it. I was like, this is it right here.
Mercedes: Awesome. So, tell me, you talked about the proformas, let’s talk about how many properties have you acquired through Cash Flow Savvy so far?
Josh: So, through Cash Flow Savvy, I only have one right now, but I’m getting two more in the next few months.
Mercedes: Yes, I know you’re in the queue and in fact, we need to talk about the property that we just sent you. Okay, so you got that one, what was your experience like when you first called in? I know that you were totally shocked that I answered the phone, but your first call, then you and I had a conversation. Then what happened? Walk us through that process.
Josh: It was so quick, it’s hard to remember but it was so quick. It was a matter of just looking at the properties that you sent me and then having money ready to go. So I remember being within a month, I had the property locked up, ready to go, and you were like it’s done. I was like, that’s all I gotta do?
Mercedes: You forgot to mention that you got pre-qualified first with a lender and then you started looking at properties. What was the prequalification process like?
Josh: Oh, wow. Well, you got to get all that paperwork because I bought one house, my personal residence prior to that. So, that was a little shocker, you gotta get all this paperwork, all these statements. But that was about it, you get those statements, you send them off and it’s over.
Mercedes: Yeah, it’s over. It’s funny, we just had a couple of our fellow lenders on the show and one of them made a joke about when you submit your loan information or when you submit all of your paperwork to get approved for a loan, you submit everything short of your DNA. So, is that what you’re referring to?
Josh: Yeah and when they would come back and say, “Hey we need a little bit more.” Before you are about to close, you are like, “Man, I could have done this a week ago. What’s going on?”
Mercedes: It’s true, actually there’s a method to our madness, Josh. And so you just mentioned yourself that all of this paperwork and then they need one item and then they need that statement. And so, one of the reasons we decided to have all of our buyers pre-qualify is because it is a lot of work, it’s almost more work to get pre-qualified than it is to actually find a property or choose a property. So you’re right, it is a tedious task. But once you got approved, did you hop on the phone with the banker and talk about your approval process or what happened after you got approved?
Josh: Yeah. Gosh, it’s so hard to remember that when I can just pretty put it into the one I’m doing now. They pretty much went over the loan details and the said my credit is good so they were like, “Wow, we’re going to give you a great rate.”
Mercedes: Yeah, you did get a great rate and rates are climbing, so it’s great that you’re jumping in with picking up two more properties as we speak. So, let me ask you this, Josh, did you interview other turnkey operations?
Josh: I did. I talked to them a little bit and I went with their service and I got a property through to other services, but just try things out because I don’t know what I I don’t know I guess. I tried them out and got a couple of properties, I went through two different services and I didn’t notice much of a difference, but I noticed that the customer service was not there. You weren’t as personal. So, I’m like, I’m going back to Cash Flow Savvy. They’re great.
Mercedes: Thank you. I do go out of my way, Josh, to make sure that our clients are handheld and taken care of. And you’re in a difficult one because your hours are kind of crazy. So, the reason we answer the phone at 9:00 at night, Josh is because that’s the only time we could get you.
Mercedes: That’s okay. But I appreciate so thanks for kind words and more importantly, thanks for coming back because I know you’re picking up two more properties and that’s a compliment. So thank you so much.
So, in the process of acquiring properties, Turnkey properties, what would you say has been the biggest challenge in acquiring those assets?
Josh: Just getting over the fear mostly. The nervousness, the anxiety, Am I making the right choices? This property better than the next one? Sometimes you see a few of them and I’m like, I don’t know the area as good as you do, so I want to ask you questions. You need to tell them everything. What would you do? I’m totally trying to get your advice on everything because I’m too nervous when I’m sitting there making my own decisions.
Mercedes: You know, I will have to say, Josh, you are nervous, but it doesn’t paralyze you. Maybe it paralyzed you for years and I can’t tell you how many people I speak to that call me and they’re so nervous, don’t do anything and call me three years later and still have not done anything. You’re one of the few that are nervous, but you do something about it and I mean just the simple fact that you bought one property from us, you went through other providers, you’re back to buy two more, I mean nervousness aside you’re doing something huge for your future so kudos to you man. That is a big deal.
Josh: Oh thanks, appreciate it.
Mercedes: Awesome. Okay. So, what was an eye-opening moment that you had with your first property that you decided to come back and do property number two and three with us? Because something clicked or something is working because if it wasn’t working you wouldn’t be coming back for more.
Josh: I guess getting that first cheque and you see how easy it is, and nothing bad has happened. You might have a little maintenance here or there or you send an email off or call the property manager, but everything is so smooth and the money keeps coming in. I’m like, wow, this is great. I can keep going. There’s no fear. There’s not as much anxiety I guess, as I made it out to be. So I roll with it now.
Mercedes: I love it. So, tell me about property management, because you live in California, not one of the properties that you’ve acquired from us and from other lenders or from other providers are in California. So, tell me about your property management team. How did they work with you and how do you get your cheques?
Josh: It’s pretty much direct deposit. It comes in and if I have a problem or an issue, I give them a call or send them an email. But mostly you’re just looking at that statement. You look at that statement, see what they’ve done and you can talk to them anytime. It’s great.
Mercedes: So, rents are collected on the first day of the month and in some states, they have until the fifth to pay their rent. What day do you get your direct deposit for your rents?
Josh: Usually comes in, I’d say between the 5th and the 12th. Yeah, it hits my account and I’m surprised that it’s usually the full amount. It’s a ton of maintenance, I’m sitting there wondering are they doing anything? Are they doing maintenance? What’s going on? But yeah it hits every once in a while with some maintenance taken out, but I’m like, wow, this covers everything. It really is building up so I can get my next property.
Mercedes: Exactly, exactly. It’s so funny that you say that because Matt and I have our share of properties. We’ve been able to build a huge portfolio throughout the years and the reality is you hear about the tenant calling at 3:00 in the morning or the toilet backing up and now you have to replace the floor because there was water all over the place. That’s never happened to me and in fact, it’s never happened to any one of my clients. I’m sure it has happened but the reality is it doesn’t happen with every property. So you yourself said, I’m surprised that’s the whole amount. Well, that’s kind of the norm. The norm is a tenant lives in your property. They pay you a rent on the first and it’s forwarded to you. And yes, occasionally you’ll get a maintenance call, but it doesn’t happen every month. So, interesting that that was the eye-opening experience that made you come back for more.
Josh: Sure yeah. My Dad, when he managed this fourplex, there was always something, there was always some kind of leak, some of these electrical problems, the AC wasn’t working. It happened so much I was scared. I was like, this is going to happen all the time. But I guess when you buy a turnkey property, everything is already top notch when you start.
Mercedes: Yes. Because I don’t want to get that call from you telling me, “Hey, the plumbing, the air conditioning,” So we make sure that everything is-
Josh: No, I would call you just to get some advice.
Mercedes: It’s true. Very, very true. So that’s interesting that you say that Josh. What did your father do for a living that he decided to manage a fourplex?
Josh: He was a computer guy. He worked at Long Beach, but he inherited money from his mother so he had to put it somewhere. So he ended up buying a fourplex.
Mercedes: Well that’s a mistake. Computer guys probably aren’t too savvy replacing an air conditioning unit or plumbing. So that probably was the problem, right?
Josh: He was a mechanic in the past too, but he was ultimately “do it yourself” and everything was stressful, everything was anxiety, and I’m like wow I cannot deal with that.
Mercedes: Why [inaudible 00:17:33] in a family?
Josh: It made my anxiety, it made me anxious all the time. I’m like I cannot do this to my kids, I need something more passive. So I stuck with mutual funds most of the time, mutual funds and ETFs and that wasn’t cutting it.
Mercedes: I understand. So, Josh, what would you say has been the biggest lesson that you’ve taken from this entire experience?
Josh: Gosh, I’d say you just have to have a leap of faith. You have to find somebody that you can relate to and trust that’s gonna walk you through situations and then you just got to jump. If you don’t jump, today’s going to be just like yesterday, you need some variety in life. You need to jump into things and you have a little bit of faith. You gotta go for it.
Mercedes: What would you do differently from this point on now that you have several properties that you acquired? Anything that you would do differently?
Josh: I guess I would ask more questions because I tend to be a little more reserved. Educate yourself by more questions because nobody can read your mind, so you’ve got to jump in there with a lot of questions. Don’t be afraid to pick up the phone, don’t be afraid to write an email, whatever it is, no matter how little you gotta ask you gotta, go for it.
Mercedes: That’s great advice, man.
Josh: That’s my problem I just can’t open up enough, I can’t talk enough, I won’t ask enough questions. It makes me nervous. So I got to work on that.
Mercedes: Josh, that’s interesting that you say that because I have personally worked with you and I know that you’ve worked with … once you go through the process, you get assigned a transactional coordinator that works closely with you as well, and you ask a lot of great questions. What makes you ask these great questions? Are you continuing to educate yourself? Do you constantly read about real estate? Are you listening to podcasts? Where did these questions come from? Because you do ask them a lot?
Josh: Really? I Don’t listen to the radio at all. I commute to work and there’s no radio, it’s all podcasts. So if I’m not bettering myself I feel like I’m wasting time, so whether I’m at work, I got downtime, whatever, it’s always on the podcast, I’m listening to everything you guys say. That’s where the questions come with I guess. I’m always like, why didn’t you talk about this? Tell me something, I’m talking to you guys through the podcast. You can’t hear me of course.
Mercedes: That’s so funny. Well, Josh, you can always email us and we will address the question as you already know-
Josh: Sometimes you are busy.
Mercedes: We are. And sometimes it takes us a few days to answer an email, but we always get back to you even if it takes us a few days. What advice would you give to a new investor that’s considering buying and holding a turnkey property?
Josh: I’d say take those baby steps. Take those baby steps. If you have to just pick up the phone and talk to you. If you can’t do anything, make that phone call because you’re going to answer the phone [inaudible 00:20:45] and talk to you, and ask you those couple of questions. Write them, ask some questions and get that feeling of a little more comfortable because it’s all nervous energy. It’s all fear and if you just sit there, it’s too big of a leap just to jump in. Make the phone call real quick. Talk to somebody.
Mercedes: That’s great advice actually. You just mentioned write your questions down, call or email. That’s great advice because when you’re on the phone, I speak to so many people and they don’t write anything down so when we’re on the phone they’re like, “Oh, I had so many questions and now I can’t think of one.” So great advice. Very cool.
Okay, so we just celebrated the new year, and so what we’re part of your real estate resolutions for this year?
Josh: It’s mostly just to get these next two properties. I can’t see anything past that. That is my first thing right there. To look too far in the future is too hard for me, it’s too much. So I got to get what is right in front of me and those two properties I can see I have the money for those down payments and I’m like, alright, I got this. I’ll see as far as I can see right now. Maybe I’ll go further a little bit later once I get there. That’s all I can see right now.
Mercedes: Travel as far as you can see and when you get there you will see further. Absolutely. Josh, you have inspired me.
Josh: [inaudible 00:22:11] everything.
Mercedes: I love it. See you said you were so nervous and all you did was share a little bit of you and I’m sure Josh, that you resonated or someone resonated with you because you are not the only person that is feeling exactly the way you are feeling and you felt to make a change. So, Josh, thank you so much for sharing so much of you because you did share a lot candidly and I so appreciate that and thank you for giving Cash Flow Savvy a second chance or third chance because I think we’re acquiring two more so thank you so much, Josh. Is there anything else you want to say to our listeners?
Josh: Just jump in and go for it, have a little faith, make a phone call, send an email, do something because today’s just going to be just like yesterday if you don’t try something. Just go for it. Make that phone call and make that email. Do it.
Mercedes: I love it. Thank you so much, Josh. Have a great rest of your day and I look forward to seeing you real soon. I actually look forward to helping you choose those two amazing properties.
Josh: Great, me too. Thank you so much, can’t wait to meet you guys and do it again.
Mercedes: Awesome, take care buddy, thanks.
Josh: All right. Thank you. Bye, bye.
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