Jim has a busy professional career, active family life, and he has just become an investor. Like many of you, Jim also doubted that this was realistic. However, he is here to tell you that real estate can be “smooth and seamless”. Find out how turnkey operations helped Jim to enhance his work-life balance, how he decided to take the 1st step, how he felt about working with us through different stages, and what advice he has for the new investors.
What You Will Learn About Turnkey Properties helping with Work-Life Balance:
- Jim’s daily roles and responsibilities
- How he got interested in real estate and found Epic Real Estate Investing and Cash Flow Savvy
- How he overcame his analysis paralysis issue and decided to give us a call
- The process of pre-qualification for lending
- How he chose the property
- Why he wanted to find his own inspector
- How we cooperated through the rehab phase
- What made the closing part quick and easy
- How fast Jim got a tenant
- The healthy way of grasping potential risks and loses
- What he would do differently the next time
- The advice for the future turnkey investors
Whenever you’re ready, here are a few ways we can help:
Work with me One-on-One
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- Become an Epic community member at The Epic Real Estate Investing Show
One of my favorite things to do is share with investors the latest and greatest tactics and strategic friends I make. I do it every week and you can listen in by subscribing to The Epic Real Estate Investing Show podcast on iTunes – Click Here.
- Grab my book, Epic Freedom ($1)
I frequently hear from people looking into investing in real estate for the first time, “How long is it going to take?” So much so, I wrote a short book about the 2 easiest and fastest strategies to a paycheck in real estate. You can grab a copy for $1 and I’ll pay the shipping – Click Here.
- Join our Badass Investor Program and be a Case Study
I’m putting together a new Badass Investor case study group at Epic Real Estate this month… stay tuned for details. If you’d like to work with me on your real estate investing, go to FreeRealEstateInvestingCourse.com to get started.
- Also, check these out:
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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 to 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 Turnkey Tuesdays brought to you by Epic Real Estate Investing. My name is Mercedes Torres and I am lucky enough to be partners in crime with Mr. Matt Theriault, the gentlemen who created the Epic Real Estate empire. For those of you back again listening to Turnkey Tuesdays, welcome back guys. Good to see you again. Make yourself comfortable.
For those of you who are just tuning in now for the first time, Matt and I created this show because it’s designed to help busy professionals who understand the importance of real estate just don’t have the time or the desire to learn every single nuance that there is to learn about real estate. Matt and I created this show to get you to dive in and dive deep without having to do all the work. I know. I know.
It sounds too good to be true and actually that is exactly why I invite guests like the guest that I have on our podcast, Jim from Pennsylvania, I invite them to share their story with us because it’s important for our listeners to hear that it’s okay to be a dad. It’s okay to have a full-time job. It’s okay to not have time to do a flipping thing more than what you’re already doing, but it’s okay to use turnkey real estate and listen to podcasts and educate yourself to make a financial difference in your life.
Precisely, my guest today, Jim from Pennsylvania, I invited him on the show because he’s your typical gentlemen that works 40 hours a week that has a family. In fact, he has a baby due in like six weeks. A third one on his way. You know, he is an IT guy. He loves his systems. He’s a self-proclaimed analysis paralysis sufferer, a big fan of Robert Kiyosaki, follows BiggerPockets and has followed us for years. Even after all of that, it took him a long time to make a decision to finally jump in and trust Cash Flow Savvy with his first investment property.
Without further ado, help me welcome my good friend to the show, client of CashFlow Savvy and an absolute doer. Jim, welcome to the Epic Turnkey Tuesday Real Estate Investing Podcast. Are you there?
Jim: Yes, loud and clear, Mercedes. Thank you for having me.
Mercedes: Awesome. Welcome onboard sir and welcome to the world of cashflow. I know that you just closed on your first investment property with us. You’re going to share your journey with us, right?
Jim: Yes, exactly.
Mercedes: Awesome. Introduce yourself and tell us a little bit about yourself.
Jim: Sure. My name is Jim. I’m from Southeastern Pennsylvania. Born and raised here. Never left the state to live anywhere else. 40 years old. I have two wonderful kids and a beautiful wife and one more child on the way coming soon in May.
Jim: I’ve been Corporate American most of my life in IT and in sales related roles. I came to a point in my life where I started looking at the future more when I had my second girl. I started to learn more things and think of things differently. New journey in my life.
Mercedes: I love it. I love it. You said that you’re in IT and you’ve been in that world. Are you an independent contractor? Do you work for a big company? What’s that about?
Jim: I started out with smaller companies and basically got farmed out, right? I was a field engineer. Got contracted work with bigger companies and those bigger companies like me and hired me on. Kind of been with some large pharmaceutical companies and consumer packaging good companies. Now I’m in a coffee business. I don’t do IT work anymore. I’m in sales operations. I help people do their jobs more efficiently and bring more value to the company and refine processes and fun things like that. Looking at metrics and KPIs and analyzing
Mercedes: You’re a systems kind of a guy. You’re an analytical system kind of a guy, right?
Mercedes: I love it. This is exactly why you resonate with Matt. Is that correct?
Jim: Yeah. A lot of what I preach at work and try to promote is activity-based selling. That’s a lot around managing and measuring activities and coaching through that. His activity sheet, his daily activity sheet, really resonated with me. I’m like, “Yeah, that’s exactly what I do.”
Mercedes: You know, it’s so funny. I think I shared this in the past, but I was lucky enough at some point that everybody that called our office I was the one that actually picked up the phone and answered the calls. I got to talk to our podcast listeners, our followers. I will have to say, after a while, I did a very informal ticky sheet. I do mean informal like next to my desk, by my phone. I would always ask, “What do you do for a living,” because what I found is I was being connected with the coolest people on the planet that were listening to the podcast, but all of you were like of the same…
Your thought process is exactly the same. My very informal survey, I gave everything to my accounting team and I said, “After two years,” I said, “Tell me who I talk to.” Without a doubt, my top six people are attorneys, physicians, mechanical engineers of some sort and then managers in the field of systems, IT, and then it’s nurses, firemen. I find it amazing that the followers of our podcast are very system driven people. They are. They like that. Matt thinks in that way, so this is probably how you found Epic Real Estate, right?
Jim: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Mercedes: Awesome. Cool. Tell me why real estate? How did you find Epic Real Estate and CashFlow Savvy?
Jim: Well, I found it through a colleague at work that’s also a real estate investor in Canada.
Mercedes: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Jim: She actually has her own podcast and she has her own like meet up. She’s doing it all. She’s great. She turned me onto it. The first podcast I ever listened to is Rich Dad Radio. The way I found that was a buddy from work. It was like when I struggling with understanding how I was going to ever retire and how I was going to make enough money to support my kids as I kept having more. Rich Dad Poor Dad, it was my buddy Anthony. I read that and it opened my mind to a whole new world.
I read like 20 other books that year all around money and financing and real estate and asset classes just to confirm what it said in the book, the story of Rich Dad Poor Dad. That brought me back after I read everything to real estate is the right thing and I’m going to pursue that. Then I joined meet ups and I joined my local real estate investing group, DIG. I joined BiggerPockets, became a pro member, got onboard with all the tools, started watching the webinars. Just trying to get really educated because that’s what Robert Kiyosaki said to do, get educated and take action.
Mercedes: Yeah. For sure.
Jim: I guess I got to a point where I was just listening to all these different podcasts and learning so much. It was good to learn it all, but I couldn’t hone in on what I wanted to do. She recommended this podcast and that’s when I got to Epic, right? I was like I really resonate with Matt because of the way he structures his work. It’s practical. I even took some education classes with Rich Dad Poor Dad. It wasn’t like as practical I would have like it to be. It was great education, great theory and all that, but it’s hard to apply it. On Epic, it was like oh, I took Matt’s first deal pilot class.
As soon as I joined that and started doing that, I was like, “This is really cool.” But then we got pregnant with our third and I was like I want to do this really bad, but I don’t have time to do all the things. I feel bad that I can’t fill out the sheet everyday the way I want to. I started to do it just at work on breaks and talking to people. I found all these other people at work that were doing different kinds of real estate investing. I was like this is great. I’m doing some of that, building some of these contacts, having some of these talks and trying to find people that were like me.
I think it was one episode I heard from Matt. I was getting kind of down on myself for not being able to do everything he said to do. I was like missing the coaching calls once a month too because it’d be like the night that my wife worked and I had to watch the kids or put them to bed. It was like the time of the call and I try to get them to bed in time and I couldn’t. He did an episode where he was talking about his success in … It wasn’t about real estate I think the episode was about. It was maybe like one of those thought leader things. He was talking about how he’s been …
Always in his life he’s been like hitting it hard, trying to work hard, hitting hard. He’s like, “This might not be for everybody,” but then he was like reflecting at the end of this conversation. He’s like, “Yeah. This might not be for everybody because I actually got divorced once or twice. Don’t take my advice to heart completely.” I was like, “You know what? That’s right.” My goal here to have this this world of work-life balance that I can be flexible. I can work when I want to and be with my family because that’s my real long-term goal.
I don’t want to sacrifice that now to like have them not like me in the future because I ignored them for years to become financially independent. I was like okay, I’m going to take a step back and I’m going to do it at my own pace and not feel bad that I can’t keep up with Matt.
Jim: That came over and I was like I had already been listening to CashFlow Savvy because I listen to just like straight weeks of the episodes now because I was listening to different podcasts. I was like listening to you more and that’s when I called you. I was like, “You know what? I think I can still get some education, but still take action now,” because I also have that goal I told you before about I wanted to have a rental property by 40. I was getting close to 40 and I was like, “Oh, I got to do something a little different.” That’s when I came over to you.
Mercedes: Thank you so much for sharing. So much great information. Thought Leader Thursday, Matt goes out of his way to bring amazing leaders that share different points of views and different thoughts. One thing that I love about when Matt does that is that it’s not just real estate driven. He’ll talk to people that have done other things. The reality of it, real estate is just one small niche of all the possibilities out there, but it happens to be the one niche that has created the most millionaires out of the average American.
We like to bring on people that are not specifically real estate people just so that people out there, our listeners, know, “Hey, other people can do real estate too.” I love that you mentioned that because the whole reason for Thought Leader Thursdays is that analogy, is that you don’t have to be a real estate investor to do real estate. You can do whatever you do. You can be an IT dude. You can be a physician. You can be a fireman and you can still have real estate. Guess what? Even if you don’t tick the boxes every single night, Jim, it doesn’t mean that you’re not doing something towards your financial future.
I will say, the fact that you’ve gone out and educated yourself in so many different aspects of it, I love that. Even the fact that you did so much of it, you were confusing yourself, you took action. The fact that you took action, and I’m going to let you share your story because there’s so many people out there right now resonating with you, but the fact that you took action sets you apart. Now that you did it, you know it’s possible. Let’s dive into the story. You reached out to me. I’m going to let you do most of the talking because in my mind, I already know how…
I remember our first conversation. I remember when you were looking up properties. Tell me, what was the one thing that said, “Okay. I’m going to reach out to Mercedes and I’m going to have a conversation with her.”
Jim: The one thing I believe it was my looming deadline. I was like I’m not going to get this done at my own pace trying to fish for leads and deals and get over those many that I might have to make offers on to get there. I knew that this baby’s coming and I need to be here for my wife and do that. It was kind of that deadline and the pregnancy basically.
Mercedes: I love it.
Jim: That first trimester I guess is what made …
Mercedes: Let me tell you, that first trimester is scary. I love it. I love it. Been there, done that. Awesome. Okay. You reached out to me. Was it difficult to get a hold of me? I don’t remember.
Jim: No. No. I think you answered the phone when I called.
Mercedes: Yeah. We had a scheduled call I think, but awesome. Okay. Yeah, you scheduled a call and I actually reached out to you and you said, “I can’t believe it’s really you, Mercedes.” I laughed because I thought, “Well, I’m sorry, Jim. You made an appointment with me to talk to me, so it would be logical that me, Mercedes, would call you back.” I thought that was kind of funny. Then I do remember you said, “My deadline is 40 years old and these are my goals.” You asked me what the next steps were and so many people ask me what the next steps are, but you actually took action.
What happened in your mind that you said, “Okay. I’m going to take action this time,” because you’ve been educating yourself for like years. You kind of almost were on the verge of suffering from analysis paralysis, would you agree?
Jim: Yeah, definitely. The one thing I guess, I had researched CashFlow Savvy and Epic Real Estate after I decided I was going to talk to you, right? I looked on forums. I asked on BiggerPockets. I asked around to see if anyone had experience with you. I had heard that Robert Kiyosaki refers people your way. I guess it just I … I think was
Mostly, doing that research and confirming all that – and to be honest, I think it was a lot of Matt. I listened for like six months, I think his podcast, and I kind of trusted what he said. It didn’t sound like he was one of those late night real estate guys, you know what I mean?
Mercedes: Like [inaudible 00:15:19] and Sheets?
Jim: Yeah, exactly. All those case studies and real-life experiences, and then going to try and track some of those case studies by looking those people up, they’re on the podcast. Just gave me some trust and confidence, and since it’s part of his company, and you’re his wife, that I could trust you too.
Mercedes: Yeah, our wall of profits is pretty impressive. I remember when we first started doing this, it never dawned on us to share that with other people. You know, one of our mentors said, “You know, you want to share what other people are doing, just so other people, the average person can see they can do it too.”
So our wall of profits used to be just like a little scroll. Now if you go onto our wall of profits, you scroll, and you scroll, and you scroll, and there’s countless success stories and videos of our students, of our clients. It’s just so warming. And you know, we are lucky enough and honored that we do get a lot of referrals from the Rich Dad Organization. We get them all the time, and there’s talk about us on Bigger Pockets; the Bigger Pocket World, they’re amazing people. So we get a lot of their people, and they just happen to be really cool, because they get it. And they may not always get it, but they’re trying to get it, they’re trying to learn. And that just sets you apart. So anyway, okay. Then you said, “What’s our next step?” I told you what our next step was. You did your due diligence. And you finally said, “I’m doing it.” You jumped into our queue. Tell me what that process was like. Educate our listeners.
Jim: It was pretty simple. I believe all I had to do, I filled out the contract, I believe to work with you. And I wired money to an account, and I think that was it, and I was in the queue.
Mercedes: And you had to pre-qualify for lending.
Jim: Oh, sorry, yes. I’d already done that many other times before that. I forgot I had to do that as well.
Jim: Pre-qualify with one of your lenders, which was a great experience all the way through. And then I got right into the queue. I think, within a day or two, I started getting leads.
Mercedes: Yeah. In fact, you may not remember this, but when you got your approval, you said, “That was the fastest approval I’ve ever gotten.” And I said, “Oh, really? It was a little long, you got it in three days.” And you’re like, “Three days? That’s fast.” For us, that was a little longer. The average is 48 to 72 hours. But I like the 48 hours. You got it in 72 hours, so it was a little bit longer than normal.
One thing that really helped with you, Jim, honestly speaking, is you move at the speed of instruction. And that just alone, the fact that you – Matt shares this all the time. You may not know what you’re doing, but you’re going to figure it out. And you can ask questions as much as you need to because that’s what we’re here for. I often say, “I’ve done over 2,000 transactions in my lifetime. I kind of know what I’m doing. And there are very few scenarios that I haven’t come across. So I may have an answer for you. And if I don’t, I know someone that will have an answer for you.” So I loved that you moved at the speed of instruction because you would travel as far as you can see. And when you got there, I bet you, you saw further. Is that not what happened?
Jim: Yes. And that’s one other reason I jumped right in with you because I needed something to force me to go do these things that I didn’t want to say, “Oh, no. I’m not going to upload the pics now. I’m going to go do this.” I was like, “If I lock myself in, I’m going to definitely take action. I’m going to do all this extra due diligence that I read about, and all these things that I’m supposed to be doing.” So that was great.
Mercedes: That’s a great motivating factor, I’d have to say. Awesome. I love your mentality; some people, they don’t have a choice, they have to give up time with their kids to do what they have to do to make a living. And you are given that choice, so that even just to organize this interview, as we speak, you said, “You know, I can’t. I only have two hours with my kids until I put them to sleep.” I said, “Great. We’ll talk after you put them to sleep.” Because I get it. That’s why I’m a real estate investor so that I could have the flexibility to talk to you after you put your kids to sleep. So I commend you for that, Jim, ’cause there’s not a lot of people that have the luxury of saying, “It’s more important for me to play with my kids, so that’s what I’m going to do.” So that’s awesome. Okay, and then you jumped into the queue, you started getting properties. What was that like? Walk me through your property selection.
Jim: Again, it was really easy. I just checked my email every five minutes.
Mercedes: I don’t send properties every five minutes.
Jim: I know, but I was eagerly awaiting them every day. So yeah, I just checked my email a couple of times a day, waited for the email from you. I would jump in and get the link. You get some photos of the property, or if it’s before rehab, you get maybe one or two photos of the outside. You get the description, and then you get some comps, if they’re available, like a walking analysis of the area. You get your whole property analysis, the executive summary of basically everything, right? So how much you have to put the down payment, how much it’s going to cost, your cash on cash return. Some of your cash flow, all broken out my expenses, and income, and your net operating income, and your net cash flow. And then it looks at many years out, based on some pretty conservative numbers, and increases each year.
Mercedes: Yeah. My numbers are very conservative, and they’re very raw. And what I mean by raw, the figures that we include is the taxes that we are actually paying on the property, and what we are actually receiving for rent. So there’s no room for interpretation; the number is the number, and it’s not going to change. I mean, taxes are going to go up, but also then we have equity, so that kind of starts to build. So yeah, I love that you appreciated the conservative numbers, ’cause that’s indeed what they are. So you picked up one property or two properties?
Jim: I picked up one. So I would’ve loved to pick up two, but one, and I think it was after a few weeks, I think I was being … even after I stepped in, I was not skeptical, but I was analyzing too much or something. I was digging into each market, even though you guys have already looked at the markets and found the right areas, even down to the zip code for good neighborhoods and cash flowing areas. That was part of my education, is I wanted to do all that market analysis, so I was taking a lot of time on each one that you sent me and digging into the market, and asking people who have invested there, and they like that area, and this and that. Just doing a lot of extra work because eventually, I want to do that myself, right? So yeah, I was doing it more for that experience, but then I was … I don’t know. I wanted to see what was available, so I wanted to decline a couple before I just jumped in.
Mercedes: Yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah.
Jim: [inaudible 00:22:49] might be quicker. I just wanted to see what was out there and what was available, and all the different markets you had to offer. So I had a market in mind that I really liked, which is where I finally settled, which is Birmingham.
Jim: Or a suburb of Birmingham, Center Point. Yeah, I chose the one in Center Point, Alabama. It’s a three-bed, one-bath. I think it was built in the 70s. Looked to be in fairly good condition from the pictures. So yeah, the numbers looked good. Just jumped in.
Mercedes: Awesome. Yeah, you know, a lot of people do point of comparison. And unfortunately, with our system, there is no rhyme or reason to how many properties you see. Some days, you will see one or two properties; other days, you don’t see any. And then one random day, you might see five. So I always get asked, “Well, what time of day am I going to get them?” Or, “How many am I going to get?” I don’t know, because it depends on what comes down the pipeline.
And because I don’t blast them to the public, they’re sent to you exclusively, and nobody else can see them. When I send you the property, you get 24 hours to view the property, and nobody can take it from you. And boy, Jim, you used your 24 hours. So I love that you did that, and I really like that you passed on a couple of batches. I have some people that pick on their first batch, because the reality is, it is a proven system. We’ve already done all the work for you, you just get to verify it. But I love that you ultra-verified what we did, which is perfect because you ended up with an amazing property. So you have a 3/1 in Center Point, Alabama – great market, by the way, on the up and up. You have an amazing team on the ground. And so what was the closing process like? Walk me through the inspection, and walk me through the appraisal. Was that scary? Did you set it up? How did that work?
Jim: Sure. So yeah, so the rehab was going on for a while. So the first batch of things I had to do was all with the lender. So that was amazing.
Mercedes: Tell me about that. What was so amazing about that?
Jim: So in the beginning, the first thing that happened after I got pre-qualified and stepped in, Chapman reached out to me with an email, and it kind of said, “Here’s what you’re going to be doing. And here’s some education on it.” And there was a video, and there was a process diagram. So I’m so happy because I’m a process guy. I love knowing what’s going on, and knowing all the stuff that happens in between, and where I’m going to be and when. It was very well-done, even before you even started.
Jim: He got an outline of his whole team, and who was going to be talking to you for what, and what they’d be asking the whole time. So you knew upfront how it was going to go. And then it stuck to that. It was pretty perfect and seamless. I can’t remember everybody’s name that I was working with off the top of my head, ’cause they were all just hitting me from different angles for different things. But it was very smooth. They said, “Here are your e-signed documents online. Read them. If you have any questions, let us know. We’re always here for you. And then e-sign them, and then we’ll do our part. We’ll go on all the paperwork through, and then we’ll come back to you, ask you some more stuff.” So it was a lot of back and forth, was basically just a lot of emails back and forth. I had to collect some stuff from the banks, from everywhere. I was collecting things for them, for finances, and then sending it to them.
Mercedes: Got it. So what happened with the inspection? Did you order your own inspection? How did that work?
Jim: Yes, so again, to further my education, I did that part that I really didn’t feel like doing before, right? Reaching out and finding people in the markets to do the work for you. So I found some inspectors. I also had the list that you gave, but again, I sort of wanted to talk to people. I wanted to get people on the phone and do those uncomfortable things that I don’t like to do.
Jim: So I found an inspector, ordered the inspection. I basically just gave the inspector’s name and number to my … I apologize, what’s the role?
Mercedes: Your contact, your personal transaction coordinator.
Jim: Personal transaction coordinator, right. Stephanie. And she scheduled it all, so she said, “Okay, I’ll get my contractor to meet him there, let him in, all that.” So yeah, she scheduled it for me, and within a day or day, I had the home inspection report back.
Mercedes: Yeah, that’s exactly what we do. We do it all for you. We do make you do some work, so I love the fact that you went and found your own inspector. But we also provide you with a list of inspectors that are going to do a great job. So then you got the inspection report, which isn’t always the funnest to receive because you get 50 pages of every little detail about your property, which sometimes can be scary as heck if it’s your first time. So tell me about that, ’cause you got a big report.
Jim: Yes. So I’m familiar with home inspection reports. I’ve had a couple in my own properties, and they were always very long. And one was the same, right? It was 40 or more pages.
Jim: I went through it. It was nice, though. He had the punch list of things that definitely needed to be looked at up the time, like a summary.
Jim: Then he was detailed throughout for each thing, with pictures and all. So it was good, because I had the professional images that Stephanie gave me from after the rehab, and then I had his pictures of the close-up shots, what he was talking about, so I could see some different angles, right? So me being in Pennsylvania, not in Birmingham, and ever going down to see this, it was great to have the pictures to go along with the words of what I was hearing.
Jim: Yeah, so there’s a punch list, and then I went through all that, and I went through everything in detail, and just basically marked it up with comments and sent it to Stephanie. And she said, “Okay, I’m going to have the contractor take care of this stuff. I’m going to have him review this, and then I’ll get back to you.” [inaudible 00:28:49] fix, and she came back to me. She was going to fix most of the stuff. She said, “We’ll let you know when it’s all fixed.” She also said, “I’m also going to give you the number to the contractor that’s doing the work so you can talk to him, ’cause he’s better at this stuff than me. And you guys can just, instead of me being the middle person, you just talk to him.”
Mercedes: Yeah, we do that especially because it makes our buyer feel more comfortable. I mean, the reality is with inspections – inspections are a whole different world. But the written word sometimes is so much more severe than the reality of whatever the situation may be. They get all technical about one aspect of it, and it makes it sound like that house is falling apart. And the reality is, it could be as simple as, “Okay, they just need to fix a leaky faucet.” It’s not the end of the world. So one of the reasons we started connecting our clients with our contractors is because they’re the ones that have walked the property. They have fixed everything, and we know what’s severe and what’s not. So besides, you get a warranty on everything that was fixed, so if it starts leaking, for example, again, then we go out and fix
How did that make you feel? Did you actually connect with your contractor?
Jim: Yes. It was great. I talked to him just to get more of a background on the house, and I found out more than I could ever have wanted to know.
He told me. He was like, “Actually, I already had this house before. I had it four or five years ago when…” and he told me this whole story of some investor that came into town and spent millions of dollars and he was buying up all these houses, and then he bought one and left. So the house went vacant. So he had already known, because he did the rehab before, of what he did before.
So, he had a great working knowledge of the house, and he spoke to some of the things in the report. So it definitely made me feel more confident, but there was a couple of things in the report that I still wasn’t confident in after talking to him and it was okay because I had the report and I just… So, there was a report of some possible mold and termite damage.
So, I got one of the recommendations from Stephanie and she said, “Yeah, this is who we use for both of those.” I called them in to do an inspection, and they found active termites and some mold and they said mold’s not like … You know, it’s not an active mold. They found some mold and mildew. They said, “That’s easy to clean up. The termites are active. We can treat that and put a bond on it,” and I was like, “Awesome.”
So the inspection kind of worked. We found something else that was not found or not known about and it got fixed and now it’s all good to go.
Mercedes: Good. I love it. See, that’s what it’s all about. Cool So then we got everything good to go. We got the appraisal. Appraisal came in. You got through your closing process and we sent a notary to you or did you fly into Birmingham to do the closing.
Jim: I would’ve loved to fly into Birmingham. But no, it was…the closing was the easiest part to be honest.
Mercedes: What happened?
Jim: So, Stephanie. I think Stephanie. No the title company-
Mercedes: No, our title company reaches out to you.
Jim: The title company reached out to me. That’s what it was. Doing all this through the email and phone, it’s hard to know who you’re talking to all the time.
Mercedes: This is true. This is true. You know what, we do connect with you, but we try to make it as easy as possible and ideally it would be just one person reaches out to you, but there are so many moving parts. Imagine if you were doing all this work yourself just to buy this one property. You’d be going crazy, but yes we do it. It takes a village to make one property happen. You know you know yourself. You said you’ve got your lender, and you’ve got, you know, even Erin’s team.
Everybody reached out to you. The lender has about five different components and then there’s me. And then there’s…you know my assistant and then there’s my team on the ground, and then you’ve got your inspectors and now there’s an appraiser and now you’re talking to the contractor. So just imagine if you had to find all those people on your own, but instead we just kind of handed them to you.
But for closing, escrow reaches out directly to you because that is very…it’s confidential. They come to your home with a stack of documents for you to sign and they cater to you…to your needs. So some people have notaries come to the office or you can come late at night after you put the kids to bed. What did you do?
Jim: I did the latter. April, I believe, reached out to me, and I said, “Okay. Let’s schedule it for 7:00 pm on such and such a night.” Or 8:00 pm on such a night. And she’s like okay perfect. But then a couple of hours, somebody reached out to me locally and said, “Hey, do you want to confirm this appointment for such and such date?” I’m like, “Great.” And he showed up on time and I think he was out of here in 20 minutes.
We’ve done this once or twice. We know what we’re doing. Yeah, and our notaries are super high-quality notaries because they know. If you would ask them to explain each and every document that they’ve drawn for you they could do it. They could tell you why you’re signing it. What that document means. You know you’re signing something so you should absolutely know what you’re signing.
Mercedes: Cool, okay so then that happens, you got your estimate and then you go to the bank to wire your funds. Did you actually do it online or did you go into the bank to wire your closing funds?
Jim: I went to the bank. Like, yeah that day. A couple of hours before the notary came.
Mercedes: Awesome. And then you wired your funds and then you officially became the owner. How were you informed?
Jim: How was I informed? Oh, okay got you. I got an email. I got a call. There were balloons that came up.
Mercedes: Yeah, we do make a big deal out of it. We do email you. We call you. We congratulate you. And then you’re connected to property management. We already, we connected you to property management during the closing process.
Mercedes: So that way, we know that you are effective immediately are going to be cash-flowing on your property. So we no longer get the money of the property, you now get it. So that’s all transferred for you and that’s happening during the closing process, but it’s a big deal on our end because we celebrate for you, believe it or not.
Jim: Yeah it was great. And actually, you know, it’s a good point. When I was talking to the contractor and he was finishing up the rehab he was like, “Oh yeah, I actually had three people here yesterday while I was working on it checking it out, you know.”
Jim: Again, really neat they have that system where it’s like kind of code on the door, you put your credit card in, and you have people who would get into the house and self-serve, kind-of, walk.
Mercedes: That is correct. Yeah, you put your credit card in there. It captures all the information and this is for a possible tenant, so not everybody can just randomly go, but when they do access it will know exactly who access the property and then usually this is why although we say it takes us 30 to 60 days to place a tenant, nine times out of ten we place a tenant in less than 30 days. Doesn’t always happen, but that’s most of the time the case. So I’m glad that was the case for you. So you closed. You’re finally a homeowner and how does it feel?
Jim: Great. It feels great. Again, it was so smooth and seamless. I barely even knew it happened. You know what I mean? There was only a little bit of work done by me. Most of the work was done by you guys, so thank you. But it feels really good. You know there was a tenant in there already. I think there was… What day did I close, do you know?
Mercedes: By the time you closed, your tenant was already in, yeah. Yeah. That’s true. So, yeah and then we had to make sure that we had the information so that you could get your tenants rent and deposit and all that fun stuff. Yay. Awesome. So, okay, congratulations sir. It’s so exciting. I love that you’re sharing your story. So, now that you’ve shared your journey, your process and when I say journey I’m talking about like, your mental journey. Like what had to happen in your mind for you to take your first step? ‘Cause a lot happens in our minds, and you’re actually an exception to the rule because you actually took a step despite the fact that you didn’t know what the heck you were getting into. You kinda took a leap of faith. So, what would you say, Jim, had been the biggest challenge in this whole ordeal?
Jim: Biggest challenge in the whole ordeal? Like just dealing with you, or getting into the-
Mercedes: Everything. Whatever, your mindset. And then, and dealing with the closing.
Jim: Okay. So, my mindset. I guess it would be. You know, I’m pretty risk-averse, right? So every time I take one of those surveys, you know security and stability are like the top thing for me, and I’m like, “Oh.” But like, So I guess I had to get over how I was brought up, right? So I was brought up in like a working-class, laboring family. You know, work hard, work for somebody, and you know, retire. You know, save your money, invest in 401ks, all that stuff.
So I had to like, read a lot and verify a lot. Running these REI meetups and these groups and going to hear other people and get to know other people that are actually like doing it. Getting to know people at my own, you know, full-time job that is doing it on the side, side-hustles. So just, you know, breaking down those old learnings, and the way I was programmed my whole like was a big hurdle for me to get over. So I think it just took, I like to learn a lot. Like, learning is like what I love to do. So, I just had to learn a lot and understand it all to get over that fear I guess.
Jim: Yeah, that’s and I knew that once I learned enough I was like this is definitely what I want to do so I just have to stop being fearful of it and take that first step. And I, you know, I’m gonna refer back to Kemosabe. He’s always like, “Just take action.” He’s like, “Do it on something small.” He’s like, “And know, if you lose something small, you’ll get an education out of it. You know, just think of it as, you know you got educated for that money, not that you lost it, right?”
Jim: That was the other thing like, you know, that’s exactly, even if I lost all this money, I’m sure I’m gonna learn a lot more than what I’ve spent, right?
Mercedes: Absolutely. Wow that is…that’s a huge, huge insight. Awesome. So what was the biggest lesson from this whole experience?
Jim: I guess the biggest lesson for me, I guess, is that it’s possible to invest in long-distance real estate while working a full-time job and without neglecting my family.
Mercedes: Wow. So true. And what would you say…what would you do different this time? Now that you’ve experienced it, now that you’ve gone over, you’ve gotten over the personal challenge and you took a leap of faith and you just did it. What would you do differently next time around?
Jim: Next time around? From a cash-flow savvy perspective, I’d probably choose a property quicker, so I can take action quicker ’cause now I have more faith in the system because I’ve experienced it.
Jim: In that same respect, I’d probably, even though I’ve only got one property under my belt, I’d probably diversify geographically. Learn another market and another team. And maybe diversify a little bit and get something a little bit more higher in price. You know, go to that next level up of renter.
Jim: Other than that, if I’d do something differently it’ll be after the baby’s born.
Jim: And delve out on my own and you know, try to do something on my own outside of Turn Key. And at some point, I’m going to that activity sheet and Matt’s instructions.
Mercedes: It does, the daily success report is amazing, but it is daily, and you know, even if we say, you know, if your magic number is just get ten points a day. If you’re consistent every day with ten points you’ll see what it does. You know, so yes don’t out yourself, don’t put so much pressure on that. Alright, so what would you, what advice would you give a new investor that is considering a Turn Key property buying and holding and that’s been considering it for a long time. What would you tell that new investor?
Jim: Well, if you’ve just been considering it and you’re not educated, get educated. I think for me I have to get educated in anything. And I feel like books is probably the best way to do that because people have taken time to write a book and get it published, probably know what they’re talking about more than an article that you Googled. Get educated, talk to people that have done it before to get over that fear, right? And just get involved and take action.
Mercedes: Absolutely love it. Awesome, awesome. Very good. So your new words of wisdom to the cash-flow savvy community would be what?
Jim: Get educated, take action, and then keep taking action.
Mercedes: Oh I love it. I love it. So well said. So, well said, Jim. You know, I will have to say, I know you’ve done a lot of research. I know you’ve done a lot of studying and you’ve been following this for a long time and I am honored and humbled that after all that research you took a leap of faith with us. And I think that with the property I helped you choose, I think I’m going to make you proud. So, thank you for blessing us, with really, the trust and just really believing in the system that has been created and that has been proven time and time again. You’re gonna be on our wall of profits and I’m thrilled to have you on there. Jim, thank you so much for your time. I know you just put your little ones to sleep, so thank you for your time.
And for our listeners, I know Jim’s story resonated with you in some way shape or form and just like Jim, he has tons of research and reached out to me. You are able to do it too. Feel free to go onto our website, www.cashflowsavvy.com, that’s savvy with two v’s dot com. Download the “Frustrated Investor’s Guide to Passive Income”, or reach out to me on the “Contact Me” page. You can either email me. We can get on the phone and you can be the next Jim in our next success story. Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for joining us on Turn-Key Tuesdays and I’ll see you on the next episode.
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