A few years ago I found myself very busy in my career selling real estate and, as a result, my physical fitness had slowly deteriorated over time without me even realizing it.
Before I knew it I’d lost 20 pounds and a fair amount of strength because I hadn’t been paying attention to my physical fitness for “fear of missing out” on that next exciting deal.
When I realized how much weight I’d lost and that it was time to get back to the gym to start pumping iron and eating right again, I did what any rational human being in a similar situation would do…. I went overkill!
Within a matter of days I was signed up with a personal trainer who had me going to the gym 4 times a week, doing a ridiculous amount of cardio before and after my workouts and on my “days off” doing a home gym routine of “easy weights” like push-ups and body weight squats.
After a few months, I definitely put on some new weight, had increased strength and even started getting the occasional “look” from my wife given my new found chiseled physique. Life was grand.
However, it wasn’t long after I realized doing all of that extra work outside of my already busy schedule of meeting with clients and running a full-time real estate career, on top of everything else, was simply more than I could handle and my 4 times a week into the gym slowly turned into 3, then to 2, and then to 1.
Although I was very hard on myself after a few months of not being able to maintain the physical regiment I’d initially committed to, what I did realize was that going to the gym and doing anything physical at least 1-2 times per week was all that I needed to do to maintain and achieve my fitness goals and, over the long term, was simply much more sustainable given my already hectic lifestyle as a full-time realtor and investor.
Much like my personal fitness, when I first realized I needed to start investing in real estate to achieve my financial goals I wanted to purchase as many properties as I could as quickly as I could, and I felt like nothing was going to get in my way! As I started to acquire properties and went from my second, to my third, to my fourth, my life started to get busy and all of the sudden I realized that purchasing properties and maintaining an investment portfolio was time-consuming!
Much like building a physical house itself, an investment portfolio needs a very stable base if it’s going to last in the long run and building a portfolio on things like over-leveraging of time, energy, patience, and most definitely finances can be much like building a foundation out of sand.
Acquiring properties at a steady, even, and manageable pace is now my personal investment goal instead of buying as many properties as I can possibly muster, and then sorting out all of the details and consequences later.
With investing, I’ve come to realize time is on my side and even if I buy 1 property every 4 years, in the next 20 years I will own 5 more properties! Not too shabby, right?
Perhaps I’m just getting older and realizing life shouldn’t be “all about work” or “getting ahead”, but just because life isn’t all about those things it doesn’t mean that I can’t still pursue them in a calm and easy fashion instead of running around like a maniac and burning myself out.
The beauty with investing in real estate is that, generally, it builds equity over time and the longer you hang onto it, the more stable your portfolio becomes – if you are managing it properly. Just like going to the gym, the investment properties you buy this year, or even this decade, will have a dramatic effect on the rest of your life and can continue to benefit you if your portfolio is built sustainably.
I’ve been able to pursue dreams now in my 30’s that were only possible because I started investing in real estate in my early 20’s. All dreams are possible if given enough time.
To me, investing in real estate is not just something I do because it makes good financial sense, it’s a way of life. Owning real estate does something for me that I’ve never been able to fully explain in words – it feels like it’s a part of my DNA.
However, just like anything, focusing on real estate too much and trying to build up an investment portfolio too quickly can have disastrous consequences.
Just like fitting in regular, sustainable, visits to the gym is necessary for a healthy lifestyle, regularly, and sustainably, investing in real estate, in my opinion, is vital for anyone’s overall financial well-being.
Until next time, Happy Investing!