Over the past several weeks, I’ve reflected upon the journey I’ve made over the past two and a half years and the sacrifices I’ve made to get as far as I’ve gotten, and what is required of me to continue on this road. For most of us, this is a tough business to get started in. We had to learn about real estate, market values, how to estimate repairs, find good contractors, how to get the money to fund deals, bookkeeping, marketing, advertising, writing contracts, and most of all, understanding buyers’ and sellers’ needs and how to negotiate well. That’s a lot to learn, but that’s not where it ends.
I’ve been crushed by sellers and realtors, and others will still look at you as if “real estate investor” is a dirty word. Maybe even you feel that profiting and getting rich are dirty words. It’s true that real estate investors have gotten some bad press over the past decade. Maybe the best we can do is to conduct our business with fairness and integrity in order to create win-win situations for sellers, buyers, and ourselves.
We have to place into perspective that “win-win” isn’t always about money. As investors, we are looking for money to compensate ourselves for the risks we take and in order to support our families, but a winning deal for a seller or a buyer might not be about the money – it’s about terms. What about that family that must move today and can’t afford the mortgage, or perhaps they can’t afford to fix the house up and it’s in a state of disrepair. But I believe you know all the reasons why motivated sellers sell and motivated buyers will pay more to buy. What I want to talk about is us – why are WE doing this?
I’d like to be financially independent. But in your mind, that might mean “rich” or “wealthy”. Does that bother you? For the Christian folks out there, the Bible states that God’s will is that all God’s children shall be prosperous. We are trying to make a better life for our families. Money is just the currency or means for attaining a better life.
Sure I’d like a new car or a bigger house, but what I really want is more time to spend with my husband and my children. I want to show my children the world by being able to take them places. I want more time to spend with them so that they can learn and live with MY values I have, not someone else’s. I want the financial means to take care of my aging parents (not that they’re old yet) or to take care of medical needs if someone I love was to take ill.
I want to be able to make a difference in the world by giving to charities that I support and believe in. I want the financial ability to go and see the friends around the country that I’ve met through this business and get to know them better. This is why I’m doing real estate.
It’s all about having the freedom to control your own life and making it better for those around you.
I am very patriotic and I thank God every day for the freedoms America affords us and our freedom to pursue our dreams. It’s a long road and sometimes a burdensome one, but involving your family in your pursuits and sharing in the journey makes it a cherished one as well.
I have pushed my limits over the past year and have done things that I would’ve been too afraid to try before, and I am glad. I have grown and I’m proud of who I’m becoming, and I think that my children will grow up to be better people for it, too. The rewards of this business will be that much more precious because of the sacrifices my family has and will continue to make.
So what is holding you back? Is it fear? Is it a lack of knowledge? Education is an easy fix, but fear is not. I believe that most of us need a cause to believe in. For young people, thinking about retirement and the stock market might not be motivational enough. But if you’re close to retirement, I know you don’t ever want to be a burden on your children.
What do you want out of life? What kind of life do you want for your family and loved ones? What kind of security do you need? Identify it, and start making your plans. This business is simple, but the obstacles you’re likely to face along the way can be hard. Decide now what you’re going to do about it. Are you a winner? Or you going to let yourself be defeated?