Show Summary

Nearly all real estate investors are in this business to have more control over their income levels and time, but most unfortunately find themselves working harder than ever. Shaun McCloskey of Lifeonaire shared with us this year how critical it is make sure you’re living a rich life…as money alone (although very important) isn’t enough to give us what we’re looking for. Shaun is the winner of the 2014 Best FlipNerd Lifestyle show! Watch it here!

Highlights of this show

  • Meet Shaun McCloskey, co-founder of Lifeonaire.
  • Learn how to use real estate as a tool to live an abundant life.
  • Join our discussion how “more” is not always the answer.

Resources and Links from this show:

Listen to the Audio Version of this Episode

FlipNerd Show Transcript:

Mike Hambright: Welcome to the FlipNerd.com podcast. This is your host, Mike Hambright. And on this show, I will introduce you to VIPs in the real estate investing industry as well as other interesting entrepreneurs whose stories and experiences can help you take your business to the next level. We have three new shows each week which are available in the iTunes store or by visiting FlipNerd.com. So, without further ado, let’s get started.

Hey, it’s Mike Hambright from FlipNerd.com. Welcome back for a flip show. Today, I have with me a special guest, Shaun McCloskey who is a real estate investor, he’s a speaker and coach, he’s an author of Lifeonaire, a book that I, myself bought and couldn’t put down a couple weeks ago, read it in one sitting. And we’re going to get to know Shaun a little bit better here, and learn how to use real estate investing as a tool to live a more fulfilling life. Before we get started, let’s take a moment to recognize our featured 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 FlipNerd.com 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.

Mark Hambright: Hey, Shaun, welcome to the show.

Shaun McCloskey: Hey, thanks for having me man.

Mark Hambright: Yeah, glad you’re on. So, this is the first time we’ve met. A few different other guests had recommended you, and I know that you’re on kind of a wild tour of sharing your message of Lifeonaire, and in fact, I’ve got it right here. But, it’s really been . . . I hope everybody can see this.

Shaun McCloskey: Oh, look at that! The electronic version.

Mark Hambright: Oh, yeah, man. That’s how . . .

Shaun McCloskey: That’s cool.

Mark Hambright: That’s how I roll until there’s a problem. But, I’m glad you’re on the show and you know, your book, and I know there’s a lot more about you than just the book, but I hope we get a chance to talk about the message, the general message in there which is how to make sure that you live a fulfilling and rich life and it’s not all necessarily about the money.

Shaun McCloskey: Yeah.

Mark Hambright: If you’re not enjoying. So . . .

Shaun McCloskey: Yeah.

Mark Hambright: But anyway, before we get started about that, why don’t you introduce yourself and tell us a little bit about you and your background and then we’ll kind of dive into some of these other topics.

Shaun McCloskey: Well, absolutely, man. Well, first up, let me paint the picture that money is important. You know? And . . .

Mark Hambright: Oh, yeah, yeah.

Shaun McCloskey: And anybody who tries to tell you it isn’t, go without it for a little while and you’ll start to realize how important it really is. You know?

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: But, you know, this all started, I mean, my gosh, I started investing back in 2003. And, you know, started out by screwing up a whole lot and doing my first deal, I can’t even believe I got through it, and stayed in the business because I lost $86,000 on my first deal.

Mark Hambright: Oh, wow!

Shaun McCloskey: And, you know, not a pretty sight, but you know, my second deal went a little bit better. I made about maybe 15 on that one, but you know, it was $86,000 that I didn’t have to lose. But, it was either stay in or go get another job. And, you know, my last job I worked at for seven years, and worked a lot hours, and worked my butt off for a company that went out of business, and ended up letting me go ultimately. So . . .

Mark Hambright: Yeah.

Shaun McCloskey: I decided I was not going to go back and work for somebody else and so I stayed with it and you know, here we are 10 years later, I don’t know, 300 and some change deals later, and you know, for some people that sounds like a whole lot, for some that’s nothing.

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: But, it was quite a ride and so here we are 10 years later. So, you know, about maybe five years ago I asked to, I was asked to speak on the subject of flipping houses and my expertise was in the realm of pre-foreclosures and short-sales. So, I started teaching on that and then I got asked to speak around the country, and I started noticing this pattern that I would go out and I would speak, and I would teach other people how to run a successful real estate business, and all I was teaching them how to do was exactly what I was doing which is working way too many hours.

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: And I would go on vacation and while I was on vacation, I was thinking about what was going on back home.

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: And, you know, is this deal going to close while I’m away and are my employees going to take care of this stuff, and is my overhead going to be handled, and you know, all of the things that you don’t think about when you go into business. But, when you go into business you kind of realize instantly that you’re wearing many different hats.

Mark Hambright: That’s right, yeah.

Shaun McCloskey: You’re the janitor, you’re the accountant, you’re the bookkeeper, you’re the marketing guy, you’re the negotiator, you’re all of these different things.

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: And so I did what a lot of people do, is they go out, and try to hire all this stuff out. And all I did was split up the piece of the pie smaller, and smaller, and smaller to where now, I got to go do more and more deals to make the same amount of money. So, I was flipping 60, 70 deals a year and so people looked at that as successful, but I was looking at it as like, I can’t catch a break.

Mark Hambright: Yeah.

Shaun McCloskey: And so this thing called Lifeonaire got introduced to me by my now business partner, Steve Cook, and here we are years later, and still figuring it out as we go.

Mark Hambright: Yeah.

Shaun McCloskey: But, getting better at it. You know?

Mark Hambright: Yeah and so we talked a little bit before we started recording today and you know, what’s interesting to me is there have been times when, you know, my wife and I have been very blessed in this business. We don’t need to work as hard as we do anymore, but we still do. But, you sit back and you question, you know, is this success?

Shaun McCloskey: Yeah.

Mark Hambright: Not that I care about that definition of success, but in your mind, it’s you just start to question sometimes, why am I working so hard, what’s the reason I’m doing this for.

Shaun McCloskey: Yeah.

Mark Hambright: And sometimes when you hear, you know, I have a six year old son, and you hear him say something like, well, dad, you’re . . . He said something recently that was, you know, was more like you care . . . I don’t know, I can’t remember exactly what he said, but it was something that was just a total jab to me.

Shaun McCloskey: And it ripped your heart right out.

Mark Hambright: Yeah. It was like, you care . . . He didn’t say, you care more about work than me, but he said something like that.

Shaun McCloskey: Yeah.

Mark Hambright: And you hear that and you’re just like, oh, my God. What . . .

Shaun McCloskey: Yeah.

Mark Hambright: What am I doing here? What’s going on here? It’s like, and you know, you just tend to . . . I’m the type that’s just, I go home, and we’re eating dinner, and I’m still thinking about work, and you know, because I work with my wife, we’re talking about work before we go to bed, and when we . . .

Shaun McCloskey: Sure.

Mark Hambright: . . . wake up in the morning and you know, that was why I couldn’t put your book down. There’s some things that, you know, clicked with me more than others in there, but it was really the are you living, are you working to live, or living to work, and trying to figure that out. And that’s something I’ve always struggled with.

Shaun McCloskey: I think you’ve just hit something, man. You’ve said about defining success and you know, other people can define success. But, the fact of the matter is, part of what the book is about is you defining what that success looks like in your own life.

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: And all too often we define what success means based on what other people have told us it means or what our environment says that it means. And very few of us, I mean, I’ve seen this now by speaking all over the country, and by coaching people all over the country, very, very few people have a written vision for what they want their personal life to look like. Most people have a business plan, you know.

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: If you’re in business for yourself, you better have a business plan or you’re going to fail. But, we don’t look at a vision for our personal lives as the same thing. I bring this up and some people immediately, like their eyes roll and they go, what is this goal setting crap? I’ve heard this before. And it’s not the same thing.

Mark Hambright: Yeah.

Shaun McCloskey: Because here, we can have a goal that takes us completely away from what our life is supposed to be about. We can hit the goal and we can feel really good about hitting the goal, but the goal can take us further away from where it is that we really want to be. And I see guys doing this all the time. They have goals set up for their business where they want to hit certain financial numbers, and they sacrifice a lot of other things in the process. And they do this a lot of times because, you know, we want this thing called freedom. Everybody wants to feel free and be free. But, sometimes at the expense of the pursuit of freedom, we get rid of the freedom that we actually have so that we can someday have freedom.

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: And it’s crazy, but we all do this, Entrepreneurs are the worst at this because we’re doing it for ourselves. Right?

Mark Hambright: Yeah.

Shaun McCloskey: We’re building this up so that we can be free and we’re not doing it for some company that we work for. We’re doing it for us and for our families and so . . . But, the one thing we don’t want to do is sacrifice those precious years with your boy.

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: In an attempt to someday be free.

Mark Hambright: Yeah.

Shaun McCloskey: And your challenge is one that everybody has. It’s as an entrepreneur, you know, it’s our responsibility to make sure everything is working and that’s difficult to shut off at the end of the day.

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: Most people that get home and they’re physically not at work anymore, but they’re still at work.

Mark Hambright: Yeah.

Shaun McCloskey: And that affects everything.

Mark Hambright: Yeah, yeah. And you know what’s even worse about real estate investors is they tend to get hung up on unit volume.

Shaun McCloskey: Yeah.

Mark Hambright: How many units, I did this many deals this month or this year, and at the end of the day units mean nothing.

Shaun McCloskey: That’s right.

Mark Hambright: Absolutely, nothing. And so that’s the first thing that I teach, you know, all of the folks that I mentor and coach is it’s not about what anybody else’s goals are, and it’s not about unit volume . . .

Shaun McCloskey: That’s right.

Mark Hambright: . . . because it’s very different from market to market and from exit strategy to exit strategy, are you wholesaling them, are you rehabbing them, are you, you know, it’s people get hung up in some sort of metric that really doesn’t matter.

Shaun McCloskey: That’s right.

Mark Hambright: In a lot of different ways.

Shaun McCloskey: That’s right. We’ve got . . . This is not wine, by the way, it’s just [inaudible 00:10:02] . . . Just so we’re clear.

Mark Hambright: It’s Vodka. Right?

Shaun McCloskey: We’ve got a student of ours that’s in one of our coaching groups and by the world’s standards, most people wouldn’t look at the volume that he does and say he’s successful, but he’s one of the most successful students we’ve got. He does three or four deals a year. And what’s really cool about this guy is he does three or four deals a year, but each deal, I mean, he’s very, very . . . He scrutinizes the deal like crazy. He will only go after the best of the best and he casts a big net, don’t get me wrong. But, he only goes after the best of the best, and he just, he says no to weigh more than he ever says yes to. And as a result, those three to four deals a year each net him, either close to or more than six figures a pop.

But, the key here is this. Some people look at that and they go, “Well, okay, $300,000 a year, that’s great. I want to make more than that. I want to make a million or two million a year.” That’s all fine, but I want you to imagine for a second how much $300,000 is when you owe no one anything.

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: The guy has got no house payment, no car payments, no credit cards, no nothing. So, $300,000 a year when you owe no one anything, and you have no bills, that’s a lot of freaking money, man.

Mark Hambright: Right, right.

Shaun McCloskey: And so, you know, I look at a guy like that and that is his level of success. It’s very simple. He knows what he wants. He knows how he wants to spend his free time. And so, he only has to do three or four deals to do that. But, he didn’t do what so many of us do which is tie ourselves down to all these commitments and you know, like for me, going back four or five years ago when I first started Lifeonaire, I was flipping 60 or 70 houses a year. And part of the reason I was flipping 60 or 70 houses is because I had to flip 60 or 70 houses . . .

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: . . . a year because I had this big office, I had lots of overhead, I had employee costs going out the door, and my expenses had inflated up to $34,000 a month that I had to spend to operate my business before I got to keep a dollar.

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: So, you know, what happens if all of a sudden . . . Is it possible to go two months in this crazy real estate business without doing a deal? Yeah or one month, you know, one month I don’t do a deal, that means next month I got to make $34,000 for next month and $34,000 for last month.

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: You go three months without doing a deal, I’ll never forget this man, I made $100,000 on a deal one time, and I went home in the worst mood of my life. And the reason I was in such a bad mood, my wife thought I was nuts. She’s like, what are you doing? We just make $100,000. And I freaked out on her. I kind of yelled at her. I said, “that just bought us three months.”

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: Three months and we’re broke again.

Mark Hambright: Yeah.

Shaun McCloskey: You know? Here, 100,000 to us a few years earlier would have been $1 million to us, but now, now that we were successful real estate investors, that bought me three months to live.

Mark Hambright: Yeah.

Shaun McCloskey: That’s not freedom.

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: But, you know, I think a lot of us do that and as we make more money our lifestyle increases in direct proportion to the amount of new money that we make. And so we never get a chance to really be free. I see this a lot of times with people who are dying to quit their jobs. Investors that, you know, some investors that do five, 10, 15, or 20, or 30 flips a year, and they still have a full-time job. And they’re dying to leave their full-time job, but they can’t because their job is their golden handcuffs.

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: And they’ve created a lifestyle that they need to have that income from the job to support the lifestyle that they’ve created and so they’re not free.

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: So, I’m blabbing a lot. So, sorry.

Mark Hambright: Yeah, yeah, no, so would you say . . . and I . . . When I read the book it wasn’t overly focused on, you know, real estate investors per say because it could be a lot of different things. But, would you say a lot of the folks that you work with or I know you tend to as a real estate investor yourself, you tend to talk to a lot of real estate groups and things like that. But, would you say most of the folks that you coach and mentor, are they in real estate one way or another?

Shaun McCloskey: It used to be that way, but not so much anymore.

Mark Hambright: Yeah.

Shaun McCloskey: The book has kind of hit people between the eyes in a good way and without, here’s a perfect example. Last week at our coaching retreat, we’ve got a new guy that we’re coaching, and he has a dentistry practice. And what’s interesting, you know, we talked about vision earlier, and how important vision is because if you don’t have your own vision, and I mean your own personal and business vision, not just business.

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: We always start people with personal vision first because once your personal vision’s figure out then we’ll figure out how to fit a business into it. But, most people do the opposite. They build a business and then they try to fit personals into the holes that are left. We do the exact opposite of that.

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: And so this guy in and he’s got this dental practice and he’s a smart guy. You know? Here’s a guy who makes probably $400,000 or $500,000 a year in his dental office making very good money. He also flipped, I don’t remember if he’s had 13 or 16 houses last year in addition to his 40, 50 hour a week practice. And he has 26 rentals. And it’s like, he can’t leave the practice yet.

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: Why can’t he leave the prac- . . . Now, first of all, if he loved the practice, that’d be one thing, but he hates going to work every day.

Mark Hambright: Yeah.

Shaun McCloskey: Hates what he does. But, he can’t leave. Again, he calls it the golden handcuffs because, you know, it’s really hard to go make $500,000 right out the door doing anything else other than his dental practice. Plus, he says, I went to school for so long for this, how can I just give it all up?

Mark Hambright: Right, right.

Shaun McCloskey: And the group is sitting here going, what do you mean how could you give up something that you hate doing every day?

Mark Hambright: Right, right, who cares, yeah.

Shaun McCloskey: Why are you holding onto this thing that you hate just because you went to school for it?

Mark Hambright: Yeah.

Shaun McCloskey: But, what was interesting about that is when I say the visions so important, he didn’t have a vision when he made this decision. A matter of fact, he used to be like this master cello player and that’s what he wanted to do with his life until one day, he went to a party with all of his friends and family, and his family said, you’re never going to make any money doing that. You’ve got to go do something else.

Mark Hambright: Right, right.

Shaun McCloskey: And he said, “What am I going to do?” And they said, “Well, you should just go be a doctor. That’s where all the money is.” And he realized last week in the meeting that’s why he became a dentist.

Mark Hambright: Yeah.

Shaun McCloskey: Because his family told him to. His family had a vision for his life, he didn’t.

Mark Hambright: Yeah.

Shaun McCloskey: And so as a result that’s what he pursued and that’s what he got.

Mark Hambright: Yeah.

Shaun McCloskey: But, we do that, you know. We wake up.

Mark Hambright: Absolutely.

Shaun McCloskey: And we go, how did we get here, and we got here because of decisions that we’ve made because of either of vision or a lack of vision. So . . .

Mark Hambright: Right. So, a lot of, and I’ve had a few different guests on lately that have talked a lot about how it’s hard to become . . . This had nothing to do with your book, but a similar message. It’s hard to become successful and free in life if you’re working for somebody else, period. And that is unless you’re building up other assets or things on the side, which is some of the same flavor of what you talked about in Lifeonaire. But, you know, it seems like it’s getting harder and harder in America for folks to ever be free unless they’re building up some sort of assets.

Like you said, I mean, I have a different story than you, but not that different. I worked for a, you know, a big company and got let go in some political, and lay-off type stuff.

Shaun McCloskey: Oh, yeah.

Mark Hambright: Then I went to work for a start-up and we were flying high then the company filed bankruptcy. And it’s like, man, I can’t rely on anybody other than myself. And I think it’s harder than ever right now for people to work for a big company for a long period of time and be safe ever. There’s no such thing as a blue-chip company anymore. There’s no such thing as a safe job anymore. And so, you know, what do you advise people that . . . But, at the same time, you don’t want to tell people, hey, leave your job and go stake your claim on your own because that’s not for everybody either.

Shaun McCloskey: Sure.

Mark Hambright: So, there’s a balance there somewhere, but I think there is some truth in the fact that, you know, you feel safe at a job, but unless you’re doing something to build up some wealth on the side, you know, you may be caught off guard when you least expect it.

Shaun McCloskey: Safety and security, I think, is a matter of perspective and it’s interesting because if I talk to my mother-in-law who has been with the same company for 20 something years, she looks at what I do, she thinks that I’m nuts because she looks at it as their, you know, especially when I first got started. She was like, “Wait a second. You don’t know where your paychecks going to come from three months from now. Are you out of your mind?” She says, “I know where my paycheck is coming from every two weeks. Well, I look at that differently because I’ve had similar experiences than you where I’ve gone to work for a company and I woke up one day and I didn’t have a job anymore.

And so, you know, to me there’s no security in working for somebody else, but security is really . . . security, and certainty, and safety, and all those things, it’s really just a facade anyway. You know? And the reason I say it’s a facade is because I know lots of people who put their security, and their safety, even in their finances, and their bank account. And ’07, ’08, and ’09 hit and they were wiped out. And all of a sudden, you know, in a matter of months or even overnight they have no sense of security or safety anymore, and even freedom, but they based their freedom on whether or not they had money.

And what I’ve learned since then is that freedom is not just based on how much money you have in your bank account. It’s how you designed your life from the start. And, you know, we live in the most free country on earth, and yet people in this country feel less free than most anywhere else on earth. Why is that? We have more freedom, more ability to start our own business, more ability to do the things that we want to do, and yet nobody feels free.

So, I have a little different philosophy and I’ve chosen to base my sense of security and certainty on God rather than my money or my own abilities, or anything else, and that’s a story for another time. But, it’s a perspective, man.

Mark Hambright: Sure.

Shaun McCloskey: Some people are going to feel like they get that from their job, other people are going to feel like they get that because they’re in control of their destination. But, even in business when you’re in business for yourself, my belief is I can go out and plant the crops, and you know, dig the holes, and make sure all the seeds are planted, but if God doesn’t make it rain, they’re not going to grow anyway. So, I place my faith in a little bit of something else, but again, a story for another time.

Mark Hambright: Yeah, no, that’s still good. Yeah, so what do you . . . when folks are . . . How do you advise folks that you see that are just kind of caught in this hamster wheel of life, and living paycheck to paycheck, and or even folks that want to get started in, you know, real estate investing, but often don’t know how? In terms of building in at the beginning that plan of wrapping what you do around your life instead of the other way around.

Shaun McCloskey: Well, we take people through this thing called the four stages to financial prosperity. And I can give you a quick overview of it right now if you want.

Mark Hambright: Sure, yeah.

Shaun McCloskey: I don’t know if you want me or not to direct people to a website where they can some . . .

Mark Hambright: No, that’s fine, absolutely.

Shaun McCloskey: Okay. If you want a further explanation of this, you can go to Lifeonaire.com and just sign up to be on our mailing list, and you’ll get a free, about an hour long training on just this. But, this is profound and I can say that because I didn’t come up with it. My business partner, Steve Cook, came up with it. It’s really good though. So, what we encourage people to do, especially new investors, is to go through this four stages to financial prosperity.

And it starts, stage number one is simple. It’s create your vision and we take people through a process to do that. You don’t need our process. It helps a little bit, but we take people through a three day event, and they come, and they create the vision at the event. And I know that sounds simple, but we start from scratch. And what we do is we try to help people unlearn what they’ve been taught elsewhere and for a simple reason. Most people, when I ask, you know, how many people do you know personally that have that freedom that you desire?
Not some dude that you read in the book.

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: Not some guru you saw at the front of the stage. How many people do you know personally that have that freedom that you desire? Most people can’t think of one person. Very few people can think of two and, you know, almost nobody can think of three or more.

Mark Hambright: Yeah.

Shaun McCloskey: And so if that’s the case, maybe we need to unlearn some of what we’ve been taught about what freedom even is. Maybe we can just start with our own definition of success and freedom and what our vision is. So, that’s stage number one, is create the vision. Okay? And that’s simplified, but that’s what it is.

Stage number two is to get your needs met. And we all have needs. We have physical and financial needs. I’m talking financial here. So, we need to get our needs met every single month. If your needs are very high like mine were $34,000 a month, it’s going to be more difficult to get beyond stage two faster. And unfortunately, in stage two you’re not free yet. Because in stage two, this is really important, you’re trading your time for money and so my value of my time might be worth a lot of money.

If I’m an attorney, maybe I’m able to charge $500 an hour. The difference is, I have to go out and work to make money. I have to go work for that hour to get the $500.

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: Whether you’re working $10 an hour or $500 an hour, it’s the same thing. So, we want to get beyond stage two. And the key to getting beyond stage two is to simplify your needs and we teach a lot of different ways to do that. But, one of the easiest ways to simplify your needs and get beyond it is to introduce yourself into becoming debt free. And this is where, man, this goes against the grain of what most people have been taught especially people who have read the Rich Dad, Poor Dad, Kiyosaki books . . .

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: . . . you know, stuff like that because they’re taught . . .

Mark Hambright: Leverage it up.

Shaun McCloskey: Yeah! Leverage it up, man. There’s good debt, there’s bad debt, and there’s a difference and so . . . But, we teach, yeah, there’s a difference but, you know, take rental properties for example since we’re on a real estate show here. Rental properties are considered good debt. Right?

Mark Hambright: Usually, yeah.

Shaun McCloskey: Does it feel good when the tenant doesn’t pay you and you still have to pay the mortgage this month? No. So, you know, rental properties are good debt when the asset is performing, but the minute the asset doesn’t perform it doesn’t feel so good anymore. Now, it actually costs you money every month.

So, we teach other strategies like debt free investing strategies where you can actually own your properties free and clear, and it doesn’t necessarily mean you have to save up $1 million to have a free and clear property portfolio. It means you may partner up with somebody else who has cash. But, the bottom line is, keep your needs simple so that you can get beyond stage two into stage three.

Stage three is where we create excess cash and the way that we always did that is we’d flip some houses, we’d create some excess cash. The problem is most people want to jump straight to stage three because that’s the sexy stage. Right?

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: Brand new investors, man, they don’t want to worry about this vision crap. What’s that about? Man, I want to make some money. Show me how to make some money. I don’t want to waste my time with this vision. And they skip steps. But the problem is, that’s what I did. When you skip and you jump right in into stage three, you will start to say yes to things because they may make you money, but they may not fit the vision.

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: Perfect example. I used to take all the phone calls for my marketing all the time. And the reason I did that is because I thought, well, somebody’s got to answer the phone. It’s got to be me. So, I’d be out to dinner with my wife and the phone would ring with a marketing call. And I now have two choices. Answer the call and spend 15 minutes talking to hopefully a motivated seller, at dinner with my wife, and have my wife pissed off now.

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: Or don’t answer the phone, see that the call came in and sit there and wonder if I just wasted marketing money on a call that’s not going to leave a message.

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: Do you know what I mean?

Mark Hambright: Yeah.

Shaun McCloskey: You’ve probably felt that too I’m sure.

Mark Hambright: Oh, yeah. We deal with it all the time.

Shaun McCloskey: And, you know, either way it’s distracting me from what I really want, that time, which was dinner with my wife, which is an intimate setting with my wife, where I could just be there and be present with her because that’s what she wants too. But, since I jumped straight into stage three, making money was the priority rather than my vision.

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: And they can both be important. So, stage three is making excess cash, but we’ve got to go through the stages in the right order. Otherwise, we get screwed up. We say yes to thi- . . . This is a typical where . . . And I’m sure you coach new investors. Right?

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: So, you probably see this all the time where a new investor gets started and they try to go do short-sales and they want to do rehabs, and they want to do wholesaling, and they want to be a landlord, and they want to do all this different stuff, and they want to start off at the gate with that.

Mark Hambright: Right.,

Shaun McCloskey: And then it’s because they’re chasing to whatever’s going to make them the most money. Right?

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: They don’t have a vision first of all. They’re skipping straight to number three.

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: Number three is a good stage, but you’ve got to do one and two first. Okay? So now, we’re going to make excess money. We used our flips to do that. And with that excess money we can do a couple things. We can either pay down our debts which will decrease our stage two needs, right, or we can go spend it on whatever we want. We can go buy the car or whatever, but don’t buy it with debt, buy it with cash now even though your accountant might tell you something different.

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: If your goal is your vision and freedom, you know, your accountant would tell you, well, don’t go pay cash for something, get a loan because then you can write off the interest payments.

Mark Hambright: Right.

Shaun McCloskey: Which sounds great to accountant, but why would you ever go spend a dollar in interest, so you can save $0.33 in taxes. That’s stupid.

Mark Hambright: Yeah.

Shaun McCloskey: Why not just be free and not have any payments. Okay? So then when you’re in stage three you’re making that excess cash. What you would really ideally do with it is plug that stage three income into stage four and that is building a pipeline. So now, stage four you start to invest that cash into things that are going to spit you out cash every month whether you work or not. Now you become really free.

And you can do that now with free and clear rental properties, you can do that by investing in businesses, you could do that by doing hard money loans, you know, some things are a little bit more passive than others, you know, like . . .

Mark Hambright: Right, sure.

Shaun McCloskey: . . . rental properties, we all hear that’s passive income. Is it passive really?

Mark Hambright: It’s all . . . No.

Shaun McCloskey: No! There’s nothing passive about it. Right?

Mark Hambright: No.

Shaun McCloskey: Same with, you know, hard money lending. It’s something that we do now here in St. Louis where I live. And we give out these loans to people, and it’s not passive, but I’m good enough at investing now where I can kind of do it in my sleep. But, it’s not hard, it’s very low-risk the way that I’m structuring the deals, and the return is ridiculous.

Mark Hambright: Right, yeah.

Shaun McCloskey: So, but, you know, that is something that we do now with cash. So, but, those are the four stages. Now the money from that is spitting off whether I work or not. It might require a little bit of maintenance, but it doesn’t require me to be at a job working 40, 50, 60 hours a week. Does that make sense?

Mark Hambright: Absolutely, yeah, yeah, yeah. So, Shaun for folks that want to learn more about Lifeonaire whether they’re getting started and they want to structure things right, or whether they’re by most measures, successful right now . . .

Shaun McCloskey: Yeah, yeah.

Mark Hambright: . . . and drowning in, you know, drowning in a pool of not enjoying life enough. How do they learn more? Of course they could, you know, buy your book like I did which I thought was fantastic. And, you know, I bought it on Amazon, and I’m sure you sell your book in all sorts of places, but how do they learn more about some of the great work you’re doing?

Shaun McCloskey: Yeah, man, two things. One, I can’t recommend that you get the book enough. And I don’t say that because the book is a money maker. If you’ve ever written a book before, there’s no money in writing a book.

Mark Hambright: Yeah.

Shaun McCloskey: But, it’s kind of our mission, you know, to get this message spread. And it . . . Let me warn you. Some of what’s in the book will go against the grain of what you’ve been taught.

Mark Hambright: Yeah.

Shaun McCloskey: And that’s a good thing. We keep hearing from people. A matter of fact, go look at the reviews on Amazon. We, immediately when it came out, it became an Amazon Best Seller, and it did so with no marketing or anything. It was all word of mouth. But, it’s we call it messing people up in a good way because the book is taking people outside of what they’ve been taught and just introducing you to some new things. But, I think you’ll like it again.

So, start with the book. Go to Amazon. Look up the word Lifeonaire and it’s just like the word millionaire, Lifeonaire though, L-I-F-E-O-N-A-I-R-E, or you can go to Lifeonaire.com and you can put your email address in there, and when you do that you’ll get a free training on this four stages to financial prosperity that’s much more details. And of course we send out free information all the time and stuff, so pretty cool stuff.,

Mike Hambright: Yeah. We’ll add links down below the video for folks that want to . . . that didn’t write that down. But, Shaun, awesome. Again, thanks for writing the book. It definitely woke me up in a few areas and I know it’s helping a lot of people, and definitely I appreciate your perspective because it’s one that isn’t often heard. A lot of folks are, you know, measuring themselves and other people based on a different measuring stick than ultimately what really matters a lot of times. So . . .

Shaun McCloskey: Yeah.

Mike Hambright: Awesome, awesome.

Shaun McCloskey: Well, the cool thing is, man, you decide what matters. Most people don’t just take the time to do that.

Mike Hambright: That’s true, that’s true. Awesome. Hey, well, thanks for being on and I’ll look forward to seeing you around soon.

Shaun McCloskey: Thanks, man.

Mike Hambright: All right, take care.

Recording: Thanks for joining us on today’s FlipNerd.com podcast. To listen to more of our shows and hear from incredible guests, please access all of our podcasts in the iTunes store. You can also watch the video versions of our shows by visiting us at FlipNerd.com