Show Summary

Many start real estate investing with the hopes of designing a lifestyle that matches their dreams. Do what you want, when you want. More flexibility with your time. However, even many ‘successful’ real estate investors simply end up creating a job for themselves with many many demands on their time. Jerry Norton tells us more about how to crack the code in this Expert Interview show! Check it out!

Highlights of this show

  • Meet Jerry Norton, successful real estate investor, mentor, builder and REI speaker.
  • Learn how Jerry went from ‘doing it all’, to living a life with much more flexibility while improving his performance.
  • Join the discussion on ‘lifestyle by design’, where most real estate investors get stuck, and how you can create a lifestyle that gives you the flexibility that you want.

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Listen to the Audio Version of this Episode

FlipNerd Show Transcript:

Mike: Hey it’s Mike Hambright of Welcome back for an exciting expert interview, where I interview successful real estate investing experts and entrepreneurs in our industry to help you learn and grow. If you haven’t checked out the all new, we have the most powerful platform in existence for real estate investors, so go check it out, Today I’m joined by Jerry Norton, a successful real estate investor, mentor and coach. Jerry went from digging holes at construction sites to doing hundreds of deals and achieving the financial freedom that we all seek.
Jerry really teaches others how to become financially free and not doing it just for the money. It’s to allow you to have control over your lifestyle. And if you are listening to the show, I know that lifestyle is important to you. That’s why so many of us get into real estate investing, to achieve not just financial freedom, but the life that we have always wanted. And a lot of people do get into that, but they never get there. So today we’re going to discuss lifestyle design with Jerry Norton and we’re going to talk about how you can get there. Before we get started though, let’s take a moment to recognize our feature sponsors.
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We’d also like to thank National Real Estate Insurance Group, the nation’s leading provider of insurance to the residential real estate investor market. From individual properties to large scale investors, National Real Estate Insurance Group is ready to serve you.
Please note, the views and opinions expressed by the individuals in this program do not necessarily reflect those of or any of its partners, advertisers or affiliates. Please consult professionals before making any investment or tax decisions as real estate investing can be risky.
Mike: Hey Jerry, welcome to the show.
Jerry: Thanks for having me Mike.
Mike: Yeah, so glad you’re here. Its funny, we were talking about before this, a lot of people real estate investing because they want that freedom. They want to leave their job, or something that they hate doing or not working as hard as they have in the past, only to find themselves in many instances unsuccessful, they never achieved those things. But some that achieved their financial success, find themselves not having the lifestyle that they thought they’d have when they got there.
Jerry: Oh for sure.
Mike: And so it’s a topic that you really aren’t talking about enough, so I’m excited to talk with you today.
Jerry: Yeah, well I kind of fell in that boat myself. So I got started investing 10 years ago, and quickly found all I did was replace my job. I was busy. I was doing a lot of deals, but it pretty much controlled my life. I had to be at the jobs and I was doing rehabbing. I typically had 12 to 15 projects going on at the time, so managing all these contractors, running from one place to the next, and it was all I did.
Mike: Yeah, there’s something to be said for having control of when and how you work, but if you end up working 24 hours a day and you’re laying in bed at night and you hear a text come over, and it makes you jump out of bed because something happened, that’s not the best way to live either for sure.
Jerry: Well, it’s crazy. When I first started, I started wholesaling, I can’t tell you, it was so exciting, every deal was so exciting. I remember I’d line up a deal, it’d for three grand or five grand or seven grand, just a quick wholesale and I’d be ecstatic that I did that deal.
Mike: Right.
Jerry: And then as I progressed and started moving from wholesaling into rehabbing and getting more projects going, I found that the fun just kind of got sucked out of it. It wasn’t fun anymore.
Mike: Yeah.
Jerry: Like you said, I’d lie in bed going, “What am I doing?” I got into this for freedom and I’m not free.
Mike: Yeah, absolutely. Before we dive too far into this, why don’t you tell us your background, how you got started and where you are today?
Jerry: Okay, so I’m from the Detroit market. That’s where I kind of grew up, that’s home. I don’t live there now. I live in Utah now. I started in construction, like you said in the beginning. I actually was a laborer for an underground construction company digging holes. I actually heard about a real estate seminar from a friend. It was a three day event. I had to borrow money to go. I got so excited about wholesaling and just kind of dove in.
At first I was working before work, on my wholesale business after work. My goal was to make enough money to replace my current income for a year. So if I could earn enough money that I normally had earned in a year, I would quit and go full time. Well, that didn’t take very long. I wasn’t making any money, and I jumped into wholesaling and I started with junkers, like to-trade houses, like you hear about $5000 junkers? That was me. I was buying those and flipping them and
Mike: What year was this Jerry?
Jerry: This was 2004, 2005.
Mike: Okay. So the market was still chugging along.
Jerry: It was flatlining in Michigan and so as I started getting going was when the market started going down. What happened was, right around 2006, 2007 market starts to correct and go down. Well the Detroit market blew up as this cheap buyers market worldwide.
Mike: Right, selling houses on eBay.
Jerry: Yeah, California money was coming into Detroit and buying, and foreigners. And so I started wholesaling these houses to all these non-local investors and I had a problem. My problem was as soon as I’d flip them a house, these are rental properties, they were trying to get it rent-ready long distance. It was just a disaster for them.
Mike: Right.
Jerry: And I couldn’t flip them another house until they got the one I just flipped them, renovated and rented. So I kind of stepped in the role of “Hey, why don’t I renovate it for you, why don’t I help you with the rental process.” With one and ten I could flip them more houses. I did not want to become a renovator. It just kind of happened by default. That worked really well, and then I transitioned into this turnkey model where I buy it, fix it, put a renter in it, and sell it as a done product. I was all in on these things for maybe 20 to 25,000, and I’d sell them for 45,000-50,000. So I started making really good money.
My goal with real estate investing over the past 10 years is to never stay in a comfort zone, never stay where I’m at, always push to that next level, and for me the next level was doing bigger deals. So I went from these turnkey rentals, I started doing rehabs in the retail markets, the first time buyer by a 100, 150, 200,000, and I just steadily kept moving up the ladder. Now I do a lot 400 to a $1 million homes and a rehab and then I also do new construction projects in the $750 million range.
Mike: Yeah, something that necessitated you to move out of Detroit area then, right?
Jerry: Yeah, so there are some high end markets. I’m from Oakland County, so you’ve got Bloomfield Hills and Birmingham and you’re got million dollar home markets there.
Mike: Right. But probably not a lot of aggressive building though, right?
Jerry: At the time there wasn’t, right now there is. Markets on fire there like a lot of other places. So tons of building going on now. But I just kept looking for what’s the next opportunity to grow as an investor, and I never considered myself a rehabber or wholesaler, or anybody, or anything. I consider myself an investor, which means I take advantage of what the best opportunities are in this market.
Mike: Right.
Jerry: And I think smart marketers, smart real estate investors, the ones that continually to make money, continually adapt with the market.
Mike: You have to. I know plenty, we know a lot of same people, but people that, five years ago would have said “I’m only a wholesaler. I wholesale everything,” and now they are rehabbing everything. Not that that’s what always happens. At the end of the day I think a lot of the most successful people that I know in real estate, are in ultimately their real estate is a vehicle, but they’re in the opportunity business.
Jerry: That’s right.
Mike: You have to adjust. I mean, mortgage rules change, laws change, markets change, everything’s changing all the time and you’ve got to continue to reinvent yourself.
Jerry: Sure. Especially with how you find deals, for example. I used to buy all my deals, were REOs and short sales. Now I find my deals off-market, not even on the MLS because it’s tougher on the MLS. You’ve got to just constantly adjust to what the opportunities are. And some people hate that Mike, some people are like “Oh my gosh, I don’t want to change. It worked yesterday. I don’t want to have to try to do something new today.” And you can quickly become obsolete as a real estate investor if you’re not willing to adapt with the market changes.
Mike: Yeah, no doubt about it. So talk about, somewhere along the line you were working super hard and you started to realize that you don’t want to . . . I’m sure you are afraid of hard work, I’m not either, you’re like, “Is there an easier way to do this? Why did I do this? Why am I doing this anyway?”
Jerry: So what happened was I started to really focus on systems and I started to say “You know what, my growth right now, I’m the bottleneck. How do I stop that, stop from being the bottleneck?” So it forced me to really focus on creating the right team, the right systems for finding, managing and flipping deals. And my wife and I started to have this vision of travelling. We have a big family. At the time we had six kids, now I’ve got seven, and we had this vision . . . my goal was ten I haven’t told my wife that.
Mike: I have a feeling she’ll have something to say about that.
Jerry: Yeah, we just had a baby about six weeks ago.
Mike: Congratulations.
Jerry: I said “Man, honey you just got to do that one more time,” which was bad timing. Don’t ever say that right after she gave birth. And so it actually took about two years of really focused planning, and what we did Mike was we sold our house, sold my boat, sold our car, sold everything. All we had left was like mini storage unit of stuff, sold everything.
We bought an RV, we custom built this RV, it’s a 50 foot diesel. If you see this RV, it’s awesome. We built bunk beds in the back of it. It’s a toy hauler. I don’t know if you know RVs. It’s a toy hauler. We converted the back toy hauler into a bunk house for the kids. We pulled our Suburban and we hit the road. And for a year, we traveled the country. For a year in the RV, no home, just went wherever, no agenda. And what’s awesome Mike, is that year, 2013, that year my real estate business did better than any year previously.
Mike: Wow.
Jerry: I hardly worked, I still worked a little bit but a long week was like 20 hours a week. So I spent time with the family, we traveled, we played, we had fun. What happened though was, is setting that deadline, selling all my stuff and leaving, it forced me to create the systems and I couldn’t believe how much stuff I felt like I had to do, that I didn’t have to do.
And I learned this philosophy, that if someone else can do it 80% as good as I can do it, that’s good enough. I don’t have to do it. And it really allowed me to step out of myself and grow. I actually did less deals, but they were higher margin deals, so I made more money doing less deals. And that was just a huge epiphany for me and my real estate business.
Mike: Yeah, aside from setting up like systems and really forcing you to say, “How do I become more efficient?” And not just saying it, but having to do it because you basically just sold your home. So what are you going to do?
Jerry: I’m [inaudible 00:11:55]. I’ve got to do it.
Mike: Talk about throwing yourself into, where an RV is your home, your surrounded by your family. Not just surrounded like they’re in the vicinity, they’re on top of you basically. I think a lot of us waste time. I might be working, but, let me go see what’s going on on Facebook, or let me check my email again even though I just checked it two minutes ago. And “Oh there’s something new for me to do now.” I’m guessing it forced you to say, “My family is more dependent on me than ever, so therefore I have to be more efficient. I can’t go check those things again.”
Jerry: Yeah, exactly. It was first of all liberating to get rid of all our stuff. It was just this amazing feeling of . . . I mean stuff just consumes our life. We get so bogged down in acquiring it, maintaining it, taking care of it, and wow, just not having that stuff freed up so much space for things that are more important. We grew close as a family. We did follow the warm weather states, so that we weren’t stuck in the RV, all in there, I think I would’ve killed somebody.
Mike: Yeah.
Jerry: So we were outside a lot because we were in warm weather states with the kids. But it was a very bonding time, and it was a time where I basically had to say, I’m going to let go of control of a lot of these things. I’m going to rely on the systems and teams and other people to do things that I thought I had to do, and equip them with the right tools to succeed.” And things just took off. It was one of those things where I don’t know if I could’ve done it, Mike, had I not just piled up in the RV and left.
Mike: Right.
Jerry: As much as I would have wanted to, I think for me anyway it took that to really change that mindset.
Mike: Yeah, and the fact that you had, obviously, a very supportive spouse to allow that to happen.
Jerry: She was amazing. I mean, she fit all of our food, she’d go shopping one day a week, she’d do laundry one day a week. The kids had their clothes rolled up in rubber bands. They had enough clothes for like one week. I mean she just was so efficient. We actually created all these videos that have thousands of views on YouTube of how she organized the RV that are really fun because most people are stunned to hear, “What, you lived in an RV with six kids? How is that possible?”
Mike: Yeah, absolutely.
Jerry: It’s possible because of her. She was super organized and efficient with everything.
Mike: Yeah, talk a little bit about your structure, your team structure before you did that and then after. You said you had to become more reliable, you had to rely on other people more. But even before you left, were there people . . . were you in an office or were you physically with people you were working with? If so, how did you keep those people productive when you’re not around?
Jerry: Well, I used to have this belief system that I had to have all my own sub contractors. So I would not use a general contractor and there’s a lot of value in that I believe, because you learn what the pricing is for every aspect, painting, plumbing, electrical, roofing, siding, you really learn those numbers if you manage your own subs. And then what I thought or believed was that, when it’s time for me to look at a project and bid it, I can figure out the numbers because I know the numbers because I’m working directly with my subs.
So first thing though that I did, was I said, “Okay there is no way I can do 40, 50 deals like I’ve been doing.” So first thing I did is I said, “Instead, I’m going to do 10 deals” but I want to make more money. I never want to make less money. That’s never the goal. I want to make more money doing less deals.
What I did is I realized, there’s a segment of the market up here at the 400,000 to 600,000, that there is not a lot of competition because people do not have the capital to invest at that level. But there’s still a strong demand for buyers. And this is nationwide. They’re conventional buyers, but it’s less competitive. Buying a house for 70 grand, putting 30 into it, and selling it for 150, everybody is doing that. It’s competitive.
It’s difficult to do those deals and try to make 20, 25, 30. So I started looking at deals and saying, “How can I make 75 to 100,000 on a deal, and do a quarter or a fifth of the deals.” So just that one change in my business model made a huge impact because I had less deals to manage..
Mike: Did you kind of prove that out before you sold your house, or was that something you figured out? Or was it just a theory at that point?
Jerry: It was a little bit more of a theory, but I watched the market. My real estate business is never gambling, I’m never guessing. I’ve got to have proven comps. I want to see sold comps. I really spend the time to analyze the market. Every time I go into a new market, because now I do deals nationwide, I have a realistic expectation that a new market is going to take time. I may not hit a homerun on the first deal. I’ve got to figure out the right team.
To me the right team is the right builder, or the right contractor or the right real estate agent. I do a lot of new construction, so an architect, designer. I’ll take as long as it takes to get that right team in place and pick a pocket, pick certain segments of the market that I really like, and then be patient to get the right deal. A lot of people aren’t that way. It’s a volume thing or they make the deal work, because they want it so bad, they force it to work and it’s not a deal.
Mike: Right. A lot of investors, it’s a feast or famine situation.
Jerry: Yeah, that’s really the case. I’ve transitioned, I think right now personally, that there is more opportunity in new construction than in rehabbing. So I’m a big believer in finding areas of the market that are hot for new construction. I think there’s an undersupply of new housing. I think there is a strong demand in the higher price point of 750 to a million, where these buyers want a done turnkey home.
A lot of my new million dollar construction homes, we fully stage them and we include the furniture, because we find that our buyers come in and they go, “I love this house. I love everything about it. I want the whole thing.” So we have to include the furniture and work that out. So now we just build into our numbers a lot of times. I mean these are 4500-5000 square feet homes, so they have to be staged or they don’t look right. Big and empty.
Mike: Right. When my wife and I, we’ve only owned two homes personally. One was a townhome, it was like 1800 square feet and then we moved into a house that was almost three times that size. We’re like, “We’re going to grow into it.” “How are you going to fill up all the space?” It takes time. It’s kind of a burden actually.
Jerry: We do a lot of research on our design work on our homes. Most of my homes are very view driven, we try to showcase views. We do a lot of glass, and we really try to get a modern layout. We really, really make sure we understand our buyer at that price point. But, man, they come in there, a lot of them pay cash. It’s the high income Baby Boomers. It’s either a second home or a retirement home. We do a lot of single level, new construction to hit that Baby Boomer market. But it’s hot. It’s a phenomenal market. We’ll knock out a 100, 150 grand on one of these new construction homes. I just couldn’t find those deals with rehabs as much.
Mike: Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. So talk about why . . . maybe you can give some advice to people that are getting into this for the lifestyle reason. But I think a lot of people that get into this are . . . they’re either way too aggressive and they do one deal and they wanted it so bad, that they lose money and they’re out of the business.
Jerry: Yeah.
Mike: Or they’re so conservative that it takes them forever to do a deal but they finally do one. Then they do everything themselves and they start to get in their head of “I want to stay lean and mean” like the way for make for me this my own thing is to just do all the work so I can save cost without considering the opportunity cost, without considering the lifestyle, which is probably why they’re doing it in the first place. Talk about how to bridge that gap because a lot of people face that.
Jerry: Yeah, so the biggest mistake I see people make is, you don’t make enough offers. So I’m a big believer in don’t do a deal unless you’ve got really good margins. It’s got to be a homerun deal. It’s got to be profitable, and don’t go skinny on your margins. And the way you do that is you just make more offers. And people are afraid of that. It baffles my mind how a lot of people, they’re willing to get in there and swing the hammer and physically do work to make this deal work because they can’t hire a contractor because their margins are too tight. But they’re not willing to go out there and just make more offers to begin with and then hire all that out, so you’re not doing it.
Mike: Right
Jerry: That’s the first thing. The other thing I want to say Mike is, I really believe that as you do deals, it’s always harder at first right? Because you’ve got to start making money. But what happens is as you start to make money, that money should be buying your freedom. You should be buying time, you should be buying the relationships. I really believe in four things.
Doing deals and making money in real estate or any business should give you time to do things you want to do, it’s a freedom of money, to free up that time, its relationships to be around the people you want to be around. And its got to have purpose, to do something of purpose in your life, so that you have that, there’s meaning in what you are doing. And a lot of people lose sight of that. Instead what they do, is as they make money they hire on, get bigger staff. Its not freeing up . . . it’s not giving them freedom. Bigger isn’t necessarily better.
Mike: Yeah, I agree with that. I think it comes back to the feast or famine situation. So many real estate investors . . . I mean you could even live a pretty nice life if you’re doing . . . depending on where you are obviously but, a house or two a month. But even just saying a house or two a month, if you do one instead of two your business is cut in half. It’s not like you’re re selling tacos where sales are up or down 3% to 5%. It’s like wild swings in these businesses. I think everybody is always focused on feasting because they’re worried about the famine.
Jerry: Yeah, so then they make poor decisions. What happens is you make poor decisions. So one of the things I always tell people is change your mindset, get out of the low income housing where margins are tight, and raise more capital, learn how to raise capital, to do bigger deals. The 400 to 600 price range I feel like is a great market. They’re bigger rehabs obviously, because now you’re doing bigger projects.
But I’ll tell you, I love buying a house for 200, putting 200 into it and do it for 400, and selling it for 650. And making 75,000 or 100 grand after carrying costs, closing costs and realtor fees and everything. Those are great deals. And I feel like there’s better opportunities for those deals than there is in the $100,000 price range.
Mike: Certainly not nearly as much competition I would assume.
Jerry: Yeah, I mean when you look at the auctions and look at these different places where you can find deals in those markets, its less competitive. It really is.
Mike: Right.
Jerry: People aren’t thinking that they can go to that point. They don’t think that way.
Mike: Can you take maybe a few minutes and talk about where some of the . . . maybe at least for you and where you think for other people, where some of the low hanging fruit is to start to outsource stuff and take yourself out of the mix.
Jerry: Okay, so in my business, and this might be just the way I like to do things, but to me having a really good real estate agent. So when I talk about real estate agent, I’m looking like for top 1% in that market, because they have so much knowledge, so much information, and they will tell you so many things that you just don’t know on your own. We’re looking at this really big deal. It’s a house for 750,000 [inaudible 00:24:29], to be spend a million dollars building a home, you’re all in it two million, it’s selling for three million.
All my research said, “This is it. This is in the right area,” and the agent said, “Jerry it’s not. It’s on the wrong side of the street, I’m telling you, it’s not the right area.” That’s what a good agent will do. I looked at it closer, I went out there with her. I was like, “Yeah, you’re right. I would not have seen that.” And so they are so knowledgeable about what buyers want, the right one, they will do so much for you.
My real estate agents help in the planning process, staging process, helping find deals, because what I tell them is, “Look, if you help me find the right deal, I’m going to use you on the back end for he listing.” And I won’t even pay a full 3%. Sometimes I work out deals where it’s 1%. But they’re looking at a long term relationship. They’re looking at working with me on the buy side, working with me on the sale side. But I want the very best in the market to work with. And if you help them see the vision of what you’re doing, they will work with you because they’re looking at you as not a one time and “I can’t sell you another house for seven years when you decide to move like a home owner.”
Mike: Right, absolutely.
Jerry: They’re looking at you as an investor where you’re repeat business.
Mike: Right, right.
Jerry: And so I just can’t say enough about really finding and working with a top notch real estate agent. Like I said, I get them to help me with so many things, design, what should we do, what shouldn’t we do, and how should we stage this, what kind of buyers are ideal buyers for this type of property. Am I in the right market, what is the right opportunity. A top agent like that, they won’t just sell you a house for the commission. That’s the worry I sometimes have is they’re going to steer me the wrong way just for the commission.
Mike: Right.
Jerry: They don’t. If you’ve got the right agent, they’re looking out for you and they won’t do that.
Mike: That’s great. How about stuff like some of the busy work that a lot of us face in the business which is taking calls, looking at deals, because you usually have to look at quite a few deals to get that one. Negotiating, all those things. Talk about your role in that.
Jerry: Okay, so the way I run my business now is I’ve got a nationwide subscriber’s list and I actually have some finder program. So what’s great right now is, I actually don’t even spend much time finding deals anymore. It used to be a full-time thing, always finding deals. Fortunately what I’ve done, is I’ve become a marketer in my real estate business. I really believe real estate investors should be marketers. The better marketers they are, the more successful they’ll be.
So what I mean by that, is if you can create bird dogs in your markets and you can have people that know who you are, what kind of deals you’re looking for, and you pay them well to find you deals, then your life becomes so much easier. So I actually have on a daily basis, deals coming at me left and right, that I can just pick and choose the very best deals to work with. But that took some effort, a lot of time. A first time investor right now listening to this, might say, “How the heck will I be able to do that?” and there are ways to that. I know you’ve got some tools and things. But you want to have as many feelers out there finding and bringing you leads. I call them lead magnets.
Mike: Yeah.
Jerry: The better you can get at getting leads coming to you, the more deals you’ll have to do.
Mike: Yeah, I’ve had somebody on the show recently and we talked about marketing and lead generation, but a lot of people don’t really realize that if you don’t have leads, you don’t have a business. I mean that is the blood of this business. The lifeline of this business.
Jerry: And the more competitive it is, the more you need to do marketing. I see a lot of people that are like, “It’s tough. I’m cutting back.” I’m like, this is not the time to cut back. This is the time to add more. Do more marketing than you’ve ever done.
Mike: Absolutely. So do you think in terms of, from a lifestyle standpoint, I’ve heard some people say before, see if you agree with this or you think it’s somewhere else. If you’re looking to start outsourcing and taking stuff off of your plate and truly trying to run a business instead of actually being the doer, do you start with the stuff that you like the least? Stuff you personally don’t like to do. But some of that stuff, like bookkeeping is important. I would never, like literally, I would shut my business if I had to do the bookkeeping. It wouldn’t happen.
If you look at a list of everything you’ve got to do and you say, “I need to move it from this column over to this column, into the ‘I’m not going to do anymore column.'” Where do people start?
Jerry: So here’s how I approach that. So I was business partners with Peter Conti, a lot of people know him, wrote a lot of books. We were partners for several years before he retired. He helped me gain a mindset that really just stuck with me. He basically said “ I if I were to look at the tasks I do everyday, and if I were to say I’m worth a $1,000 an hour, what I do. That’s how high lever I am. I’m worth $1,000 an hour. Is what I’m doing right now is worth $1,000 an hour?”
And that helped me answer this question of, should I be licking envelopes, should I be doing all these lower level things. Is there somebody I can get to do this for 10 bucks an hour? And what do I need to do in my business so that I can focus on these higher level things, which in my mind, when it comes to flipping houses and real estate, its finding and analyzing deals.
Its staying up your higher level, it’s not swinging hammers. It’s not doing bookkeeping, it’s not licking envelopes. It’s none of those things. It’s the higher level things. And so, for example a lot of people think, “Oh I just can’t afford these things. I got to do them myself.” You really can be so much today with software, with some of these tools available.
There are some really good tools out there that can do things for you. I’ve got $4 virtual assistants that do things for me. There are so many ways to inexpensively get things done. Even all my deals right now, deals come in, they all come into a portal where people upload them into a system where it’s all right there.
I pay a guy $25 to go through that deal, spend an hour making sure it meets my basic qualifications before I look at it, 25 bucks. To me, that is so worth my time for me not to have to do that lower level task of making sure it meets all my 10 things before I look at it.
Mike: Absolutely.
Jerry: So then what happens is I end up looking at the deals that pass that first level and so I’m spending now my time doing something very high level which is really looking at a deal to determine if its worth going forward on.
Mike: Right.
Jerry: So some of those things I think . . . really what I think it is Mike, it’s a mindset. You have to start thinking and looking at your business with, how can I start to outsource these lower level things. I agree with the concept of outsourcing things you don’t like to do. I do that. There’s things I hate doing and I don’t want to do them. It doesn’t align with lifestyle for one. If I don’t like doing it, am I going to have a good lifestyle. And doing the things I really like.
For me fortunately. I love marketing, I can do marketing. I’m just fascinated by it. I love doing it and so I consider myself more of a marketer than a real estate investor.
Mike: Okay.
Jerry: Some people hate doing that and they struggle in their business. So if you struggle with marketing, you need to find somebody who’s killer at it on your team or learn how to love it because like you said, it’s hard to grow a real estate business if you don’t do marketing.
Mike: Yeah, absolutely. Unless you get to the point where you enjoy doing the things you’re doing and you get rid as much of the stuff you don’t like doing as possible, then from a lifestyle design standpoint, you’re never going to enjoy what you are doing.
Jerry: Yeah, that’s true.
Mike: You’re either going to get burned out or you’re going to retire early, or quit or take your eye off the ball, if nothing else.
Jerry: Yeah. Real estate is like you said earlier, it’s kind of an up and down business and people have to be able to stomach the downturns and know the deals that don’t work. I’m like you, I’ve done hundreds of deals and I still screw up. I still have deals, fortunately it’s not often, that I don’t make money.
I see so many people that are just scared to death of that or they have a bad deal and they leave real estate and say, “It doesn’t work.” I’ve always jumped back on that horse, gone out and done another deal and a better deal. I look at my real estate business . . . on December 31, if I look back at all my deals and I came out on top and made a bunch of money, then I won. I won the game that year.
Mike: Even if you had a couple of losses?
Jerry: Even if I had a couple bad deals, yeah.
Mike: Right. Nobody is going to remember those other than you.
Jerry: Yeah, and unfortunately in this business, with what you do and what I do as a mentor and trainer, it’s not talked about a lot. People don’t talk about, “Oh you’re going to lose money on some of your deals.” When you say that people are like “What? That’s not what I want to hear.” The reality is its part of the business. You’re not going to always get it right. As long as you are learning from your mistakes, you’re trying again, constantly trying to grow and learn, you’ll keep doing better, but you’re going to have deals that don’t always work out.
Mike: That’s just the reality of it. What business or what professional athlete never loses?
Jerry: Yeah.
Mike: It doesn’t happen.
Jerry: It’s just part of the game.
Mike: Yeah. Jerry, thanks so much for your being with us today. If folks want to learn more about you and all the stuff you’ve got going on, where do they go?
Jerry: If you go to, that’s a really fun site. Every week we add new video, new training articles, and we’ve got a lot of free stuff on there, great content. I really believe in giving a lot of value. So I think people enjoy it. I’m very interactive on there. So if you leave a comment on one of the videos, or articles or whatever, I try to answer those and really try to help out. There are some links there for my free book, and other things. So that’s a great place to go.
Mike: Awesome. I think for those of you who are listening, I think if you’re at a point where you’re trying to get started or you have started, maybe you’re making money but you’re not having the lifestyle you want, hopefully there are some tools here to learn, it’s not easy, but a big part of getting to that point, it sounds like Jerry from your experiences, is just planning. Just knowing what you want to happen and making sure that failure is not an option and just jumping in.
Jerry: Yeah, on the side I talk a lot about some of the stuff that nobody else wants to talk about. So I try to be real, I try to show the other side of real estate investing. But I also try to be very encouraging and say, “Here’s the thing that could go wrong, that will go wrong. But here are some things you can do to offset that or learn from it.” I’m just such a huge believer in education. I constantly try to learn every single day and people that are that way I think grow and develop very quickly in this business.
Mike: Yeah, awesome. We’ll add a link for your site down below the video here. Jerry thanks again for being with us today. Thanks for sharing your story and any other plans for a cross country trip? You want to wait until you have a couple more kids?
Jerry: Well, it’s been tough. My kids just love the RV so much. We bought a house here in Utah. The RV is in the driveway. We try to take it out as much as we can. Usually we’ll go for the whole summer, so for a month or so, during the summer and just hit the road.
Mike: That’s awesome.
Jerry: Yeah, I just want to tell everybody, real estate is not about the money. I talk about the money a lot, I know you did too, but it’s not about the money. For me it’s about having the freedom to have, be, do and give. Those are the four things for me, have the things I want, be able to be the kind of person I want, do the things I want and then give in a big way, give back. Real estate to me is a vehicle to do that. A lot of people think that I live and breathe real estate, that’s all I do and it’s not true. It’s not. I actually have a lot of other things that are way more important to me than real estate and business.
So for me what that means, it means real estate needs to be a vehicle to support the lifestyle I want to have, because for me it’s not just about doing deals and making money. It’s about relationships and all of the other things that I’m interested in and my family and my spiritual journey and all of that, that really matter in life..
Mike: Absolutely. Awesome Jerry, thanks again for being with us today.
Jerry: Thank you Mike.
Mike: Stay in touch my friend.
Jerry: All right. I will. Bye.
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