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  • Writer's pictureRyan L. Ventura

From Carpenter to Real Estate Investor: My Journey To Financial Freedom

When I first learned about passive income through real estate investing, I was instantly hooked.

I spent countless hours reading books, listening to podcasts, going to seminars, and finding any information I could get my hands on about real estate investing.

I was driven to learn more and become an investor myself.

Fast forward to today, and I am not only an investor myself, but I have a growing business that helps others achieve financial freedom through real estate investing.

I am forever grateful for being able to share my experiences with others and help them on their journey.

When I was first learning and yearning real estate investing, my job and only source of income was working as a carpenter in my Dad's business. The job required my direct involvement day to day.

If I wasn't pounding nails at work, I wasn't making any money. This is active income. 

Active income works only when YOU work. You trade time for money. Think being a carpenter.

Passive income works even while you sleep. You invest money for time. Think being Warren Buffet.

Although I love rehabbing and restoring homes, I knew I wanted more for my financial future than just one source of active income I had being a carpenter.

I wanted out of the rat race that is conditioned in America: work hard at a job for 30 plus years, invest in a boring 401k or IRA, and finally retire in your 60's with hopefully enough money and years left to live life.

I had an entrepreneurial mindset engrained in me. My dad, brother, and both of my grandpas were all successful business owners.

Real estate appealed more to my entrepreneurial mind than the stock market, crowdfunding, or index funds. With real estate you call the shots, not Wall Street.

Real estate became the natural investment for me. As a carpenter, I built and repaired real estate everyday, so I figured why not invest in it?

I understood real estate, and realized the importance housing had in our overall economy. Even though I naturally gravitated towards it, I had a lot to learn.

Education on your investment of choice is the first step to becoming successful.

No matter what I was doing, real estate investing was on my mind:

During my commute to work, I listened to podcasts.

At night, I read books and blogs.

On weekends, I would "drive for dollars" trying to find off-market properties, and would view properties on the market with Realtors.

I manifested my desire to become an investor and achieve financial freedom in everything I did.

Then life hit me - I was broke, soon to be divorced, and unemployed all within a few months.

I went from having only one active income source, to having none. I went from having this deep desire for real estate, to being depressed and lost. 

My manifestation of becoming an investor was removed from my radar for a short time. I had to heal within myself, before I relit the fire to invest in real estate. And heal I did.

Going through tough times, I learned firsthand that having only one source of active income was the slow way to financial freedom, and that one hiccup in your active income source could have shattering effects on your life.

I understood the buzz behind having multiple streams of income.

I spent years saving money and researching real estate investing before even buying my first property.

Fear and analysis paralysis had their grip around my neck, and I just couldn't seem to pull the trigger on buying a property.

Some of the properties I decided against not buying cash flowed well, and are now worth 2 and 3 times more now, than they were then.

Hindsight is always 20/20, but I am grateful for the time I spent self-educating. Even though I passed up on those properties I didn't buy, analyzing them taught me valuable lessons and paid off in huge dividends later on:

  • I learned the pros and cons of single family vs multifamily real estate.

  • I learned how to project cash flow accurately, and how to compare and contrast properties against one another to see which would be a more profitable investment.

  • I learned effective strategies for property management and how to have a property perform in the most efficient manner.

All of the lessons I learned during this period of my life were crucial to helping me develop what our business is today.

Look at everything you do in your investing journey as a learning lesson, and not as a waste of time or a failure.

Real estate investing is all about all about BALANCE and DEDICATION.

Don't procrastinate to the point of not buying a single property and never becoming financially free. However, don't go to the other extreme and buy properties out of ego and to say you have them, but have no way of managing them properly.

Investors that grow too fast and let their ego get in the way of business decisions, often crash and burn. Balance and gradual growth is key.

Financial freedom is not about greed and ego.

Financial freedom is about having enough passive income to pay for the expenses of your life.

Believe it or not, achieving financial freedom has little to do with buying material possessions and being part of the consumer culture, and a lot to do with buying time - our only nonrenewable resource.

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