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  • Property Training/Mentoring

    My journey in property at age 24 with £6K

    Hi Martin,

    I’m a Leeds resident and investor. Are you going to actively invest in Leeds? If so, have you nailed down an area?
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    Hi Simon,

    Well, as my plan is to focus on sourcing standard single-family homes as flips or BRR's I've decided to focus on Kirkstall and Burley area. I do plan, of course, to have a view over the whole of Leeds and also will not rule out rent to rents, HMO's or lease options, especially if I'm able to find a way to keep them myself for some cash flow but I won't be making it my main focus.

    If you have any advice or tips for me I'd love to hear it, either here or my email address is martinjdevans@gmail.com, always looking to learn from people with more experience than me.

    Thanks for reaching out!

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    Sounds good, Martin. Both strong areas. I am done buying any more at the moment, but if I were buying I would add Woodhouse to your area. Decent location, great for town and Uni’s.
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    Day 125


    "Be humble. Be teachable. The world is bigger than your view of the world.  There’s always room for a new idea, a new step… a new beginning"- Unknown


    I couldn’t really find a quote to perfectly go with this blog but I think that one is quite fitting.

    The 100-day program is now over, granted, it overran a bit, something I definitely won't be complaining about.

    We recently met up in London for our end of program meeting (All except our LA participant, who couldn't make it). It was nice to see everybody again and spend some time with Richard who had also invited three different speakers.

    The first speaker gave a presentation on talent dynamics and the way working with people who have different skills or talents than yourself can be a great way to plug some gaps that one may have. I’m not the biggest fan of the more detailed side of things, business plans and the like, which is actually how I first connected with Richard, through reaching out to him to ask him to assist me with my business plan. We spoke about finding somebody that compliments you by bringing to the table something that you may be lacking and how to effectively connect and build a relationship with these different types of people which I found valuable as I believe networking is a large part of property, as is often said, ‘it's a people business’.

    The second speaker spoke to us about research and the best way to do our due diligence on a specific area, drilling down to street level. This was very interesting and I picked up some great tips and a lot of useful resources were mentioned that I had not come across before.

    The final speaker was somebody who I’ve already met during my last meet up with Richard when he gave us a tour of his different projects and somebody I know to be a genius when it comes to the project management and planning side of things. He gave us a short presentation on project management, how he would cost up a deal and how he would get a good team around him. At this point, we were slowly running out of time which was a shame but in a way a good thing as I could have asked him questions for hours. I love to learn about the smaller details of planning and the project management side of things.

    I must admit, at the beginning of the course I wasn’t sure what I would get from it or what I could expect but it completely surpassed any expectations I had.

    I went in hoping to learn a lot, make some new connections and be in a position to quit my job and start property full time within a year all of which definitely happened but so did much more. Having somebody like Richard around always pointing you in the right direction gave me so much confidence and motivation. Combined with the fact that I hold Richard and his opinion in very high regard so I was pushing myself further to not feel like I was wasting his time or letting him down, which is something I intend to continue to do even if the program has come to an end.

    Going through the process and trusting the process really did turn out to be worthwhile. Starting with the planning stage, moving on to the setup stage followed by the action stage helped massively as I tend to be the type of person that just wants to start something without maybe really thinking about the planning side of things first.

    Of course, everybody's gaps were varied which lead to varied results and strategies. One person already had multiple houses and wanted to go more towards the development side of things which she has slowly started to do, already being offered an apartment at a great price. Another also had a few houses, wasn't sure in which direction to go next but is now much clearer about the next steps having chosen one strategy, implementing it, realising it wasn't the right one but at the same time discovering the perfect one for him, which in itself is a highly valuable thing to have happened. The third person was starting from the ground up but has already nearly got a project management deal across the line after moving from a mindset of constant learning to 85% action taking.

    The great thing is the mix of characters, experience and knowledge, all of which are beneficial to getting to where you want to be.

    But I also realise that the results that I have achieved are not possible without being hardworking and really, really wanting it.

    A point that comes to mind right now as I’m typing that I want to quickly get across, the fact that I am able to quit my job so soon without actually testing the strategy, checking if it really will work or not.

    I’m sure most people realise that my decision is not just based on only taking this 100-day course, reading some books and suddenly I’m a property professional.

    I have been studying property for years. Pretty much every free moment I had I would take advantage of, whether it be listening to audiobooks as I walk or drive, reading property books before I go to sleep, I don't even really watch series or movies, instead, I watch property youtube channels.

    This has been going on for around 4 years, slowly increasing my knowledge, so I wouldn't exactly classify myself as a newbie but the fact I have never actually taken any action in the property world doesn’t put me so far above a newbie. The point I am trying to make is that I went into this program really wanting it, willing to do anything it takes with a big why of being able to quit my job and work on my own terms in an industry I am truly passionate about and have been for years.

    I also realise that not everyone can quit their job so easily, some people have children and other commitments that stop them from being able to take that risk but, at the same time, I am also confident that there are a lot of people in my position that could do exactly what I have done as long as they have a strong reason why that will bring out true dedication and motivation even if it means starting out part-time, to begin with.

    I understand that everybody has a different tolerance to risk but I believe a lot of people are underpaying their tolerance to risk just to be able to stay in their comfort zone. I believe everyone should really evaluate what is the worst that could happen if you did take the plunge and dive head first towards your dreams. Mine? Getting a full-time job in Leeds and continuing property after my working day or even worse, if for some crazy reason I don’t manage to find a job in Leeds I would move back into my parents.

    Evaluate it, if the truly worst-case scenario really isn't that bad then what's stopping you? Fear will always be there, it's how you react to that fear that will set you apart from the people who in 20 years will still be saying ‘one day’.

    I was going to go on to explain my next plans and a few other things but I think I went on a bit of a tangent this time and I don't want the blog to go on for too long.

    I have the last group call with my apprenticeship program and also the one before us with a renowned deal sourcer on the 9th so I will wait until I’ve participated in that and then come back with my next plans. Safe to say, I’m excited.

    P.s Before I sign off, I’d like to just quickly say thank you to everybody who has reached out in some way to give me some tips, advice or just to say how much they are enjoying reading this journal, it really does motivate me to know people are getting something from what I am writing, even if it is just entertainment and, I must say, I am really enjoying writing these posts to look forward to continuing them.

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    Day 145

    “Success isn't always about greatness. It's about consistency. Consistent hard work leads to success. Greatness will come” - Dwayne Johnson

    Real talk - I’ve been struggling recently. There are points in my life where I get into what I call a ‘lazy phase’. Sometimes these phases can last for weeks and in the end, I just end up feeling more demotivated and annoyed.

    This time was different. I was in this same phase, watching mindless youtube videos until late at night (more like early in the morning) and sleeping until late afternoon getting essentially nothing done until I came across a video that talked about productivity and how people only lose themselves in series, movies and videos to escape the reality they live in. Although it was something deep down I probably already realised it still got me thinking and it pushed me not to be like the 99%.

    You see, for anybody that's read all of my posts, you may think I am this efficient, infallible tracking everything machine but that's simply not the case. The true reality is that I love nothing more than sitting on the couch watching movies or series. That's the whole reason I don’t have a PlayStation or anything like that because if I did I would never get off it, that's also the reason I don’t start any new series because I obsess watching them until completion. The new Stranger Things episodes recently came out, I finished it in 2 nights.

    All this also got me thinking, what am I trying to escape from? What do I not want to face in my life right now?

    I won’t bore you with my first world problems but the reason I mention this is because upon answering the question of what is driving me to get into my lazy phase opened my mind and I managed to get out of it in 5 days, much quicker than usual and I’ve started working on the things that I feel need changing.

    It was not only this realisation that got me out of my rut but also the mastermind group I recently joined.

    As I mentioned last time, the apprenticeship program is now over but working with Richard and the other mentees is not. We have now formed a mastermind along with the previous group of mentees and it does force me to stay accountable.

    Being in the mastermind means that we have monthly calls where we have to bring something that we have achieved over the month to the call, along with our next steps for the 3 months plus other ‘gives’ for the group. It also means we have weekly check-ins outlining what we have been up to over the week and what tasks we have completed.

    Last week was the first check-in I was apart of since joining and I had to ignore it. I had nothing to say, I’d achieved nothing, done nothing and that is not good enough, that is not me.

    This new found accountability is really what will take me to the next level, because, lets face it, most of us, left to our own devices, would slack and not push ourselves half as much than if we always had a group of people prompting you to get that ass off the couch and get s**t done.

    It’s about 6 weeks and counting until I make the move from Berlin to Leeds and I have a lot to do, a lot to plan.

    This week I have set up my bank account and ordered a sim card from the UK so that I can get business cards printed.

    My website is complete, I paid somebody in fiver £230 and he did a great job but I need to write the copy and get everything perfect before my move.

    I also need to book my flights to the UK. My plan is to take my girlfriend with me so we can take two large suitcases and hopefully that will accommodate most of my belongings then I will come back to Berlin, pack my suitcase full again and that should be most of my stuff. I live quite minimal. I basically just have my bedding, clothes and books so it shouldn’t be too difficult.

    I also have to find an apartment in the Leeds area. Ideally, I will move to Kirkstall in an HMO to start with. I look to pay no more than £400 a month but will stretch to £450 if needs must.

    I also have still not got a car, I thought I would get one from my father but the one he had in mind won't be good enough as its too old but he has the job to find me one before my move so this is one less thing on my list. I must admit, I’ve not driven in 5 years so getting back on the road again does make me slightly nervous but I plan to practice a lot at night until its natural again.

    The last thing on my list is to get all my compliance in place. Not a huge task, just a matter of making calls to different companies and filling in paperwork. Just a time-consuming activity.

    Next month I am going to work less on the actual looking at properties side of things and get all that in place along with writing a few scripts for some Youtube videos that I will be putting out once touching down in the UK.

    There is a lot to do but I feel ready and motivated. I feel that the lazy phases could be behind me now for good as I feel a switch in my mindset. I don’t know what exactly has changed, I just feel like anything put in front of me I will just do and then move onto the next thing… Maybe it's the coffee talking, only time will tell.

    Richard recently uploaded some videos to do with the program on his youtube along with my testimony. I will link those down below.

    I’ve set a reminder in my phone to write another post in 2 weeks time as sometimes time goes by without my realising that it's been too long since my last entry.

    I look forward to catching up with you soon.

    Program video - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=erqv3lIsZsQ

    My testimony - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ihvnkgZctgo

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    Hi Martin,

    Great read! I was quite gutted that your last post was only 6 minutes ago. I could have kept reading for hours.

    Your posts are very inspiring. I am looking to get into property myself. But first I am educating myself as much as possible. I have started with  XXXX (*Moderator note: Name removed ) which proved to be a dead end due to his reputation. Do you have any recommendations on sources of information you found very useful?

    I have some authors I'd like to check out and I am currently using PT as a source as well.

    Any help would be appreciated. Keep it up!

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    Hi,

    I'm really happy you feel that way about my posts, it really means a lot.

    As you've probably read, I have been listening to podcasts and reading books for some years now. Here's a list of my favourites from each category, a great place to start.

    Podcasts (Property) - If you’re really serious about learning, start each podcast from the beginning and work your way through. The knowledge you will gain will be substantial.

    The Property Voice - I’ve mentioned Richard a lot in my posts as he is the one who I’ve been doing the program with recently but he also has a great podcast, I really resonated with his style of podcasting due to the detail in which he explains everything. I found he went into more the ‘nitty-gritty’ points of property which I really appreciated.

    The Property Podcast- One of the first podcast I ever listened to and possibly the podcast that really encouraged me to dive deeper into the property world. They explain everything with ease and transparency. They have grown a huge business around the podcast without being salesy, for a reason, they came across as great guys and really do want to help others. As a side note, they also have a forum which I recommend you join and a quarterly magazine for £5 per quarter, a fair price, I do recommend.

    The Progressive Property Podcast - Disclaimer, do bear in mind when listening to this that there is sometimes some selling, they have one of the largest property training companies and this is just another way for them to gain exposure. That being said, the information they give in this podcast is also very helpful and easy to digest. Plus, due to them being such a huge influence in the training world they have some very experienced guests on the podcast for interviews.

    Goliath Sourcing Academy Podcast - A really helpful podcast in the sourcing world but again, as you can tell from the title it is a training company so of course there is a motive behind the free information but nevertheless, some useful free information. I wouldn’t actually recommend you listen to this one without a good basic knowledge of property, so start with the ones above first.

    Podcasts (Business) - Podcasts that are not directly around property but having a business mindset and understanding how money and investing works on a granular level is also important to becoming a more rounded investor.

    Upon writing the title I realised I only actually have one, but anyway.

    Ask Mr. Wonderful - Sadly this podcast only ran a few episodes. Maybe you know him from Shark Tank, the US version of Dragons Den, a really honests guy with honest business advice. Plus the podcast is hilarious.

    Books (Property) - With the property and business books I won’t add an explanation for most unless I think it’s necessary but what I would 100% recommend that wouldn’t be an understatement to say, they changed my life, would be, firstly and most importantly, Audible. Books take a long time to read but if you enjoy to learn by listening, like me, then audio books are a game changer. 

    I simply don’t have the time to read an actual book aside from the hour before I go to sleep. Secondly, Bluetooth headphones. I spend most of my free time educating myself with podcast or books so having no wires and being able to leave my phone lying on the side means I can learn even when I may have no pockets to accommodate my phone...Ok, in my underwear.

    The complete guide to property investing by Angela Bryant - I believe this was the first property book I ever read. Perfect for gaining the basic knowledge. Very easy to understand. 

    The complete guide to property investing by Rob Dix - I realize the same name as the other but different content. From one of the people who presents The Property Podcast.

    Back to Bricks & How to be a landlord by Rob Dix- Thought Id get all of his books out of the way now. I like his writing style and they are great books to read even if how to be a landlord is a bit more specialized, it’s still good to learn the processes he talks about there. 

    Property Magic by Simon Zutshi - A classic that everybody talks about.

    Surprisingly at this moment, they are the only ones a can remember when it comes to property without going onto specialist subjects like commercial conversions and sourcing. I guess I have so many podcasts to keep me up to date with everything that I don’t need so many property books. But I do love business books.

    Books (Business) - Books you won’t See recommended here are ones by Tony Robbins, How to make friends and influence people and 7 Habits Of Highly Effective people. All of these books you will see recommended everywhere and you should also try them for yourself but for me the writing style wasn’t pleasing for me to read, hence, I can’t put them in my list.

    The Compound Effect by Darren Hardy - My all-time favourite book 

    The One Thing by Gary Keller 

    The Millionaire Fastlane by MJ DeMarco

    Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki

    High-Performance Habits by Brendon Burchard - A book I recently finished reading and one of the first ones I will listen to again. Some great points that I can’t wait to take action on. 

    The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari by Robin Sharma - A great story with plenty of lessons to be learnt. 

    Start WIth Why by Simon Sinek- Having a true reason why you will go to so much effort to be successful in any endeavor you begin is very important and this book explains it in great detail. 

    Can’t hurt me by David Goggins- Quickly becoming a classic in how much a human really can handle and challenging you to push yourself.

    The next three I’ll list are really quite difficult reads. I would say advanced reads but ones I enjoyed hearing the viewpoint of.

    Principles by Ray Dalio - A leader of one of the most successful hedge fund managers, worth billions. Definitely somebody that commands respect and has a wealth of information to share. 

    Charlie Munger: The complete Investor - The Former right hand man of Warren Buffett, his investing principles have created billions for himself and others.

    The Ascent Of Money: A Financial History of the World by Niall Ferguson - One of the more complicated books I’ve listened to when it comes to the information and difficulty to follow. Have to constantly be ‘in the zone’ to follow but very interesting to hear how the concept of money came about. 

    That’s about all that I can think of right now for you. I think this would be a great start and you will find your own path through further information depending on which direction you decide to take. 

    Good luck! 

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    Hi Martin,

    This is such a great thread and I loved reading all your progress so far and what you’ve been doing.

    I also really appreciate your most recent post about how you’ve been struggling. It’s inspiring to see people opening up about their issues and continuing to carry on even when it isn’t the easiest for them. Congratulations for being honest and continuing with your plans.

    While in the day to day it may not seem like a lot is getting done, you’ve come so far from where you first started. I look forward to coming back to this thread later on and seeing where you have got to!

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    Transparency notice: OneandOnlyPro is a commercial partner of Property Tribes.

    Thank you for your kind words.

    You're right, slow progress is still progress but it all comes down to the standard we set for ourselves.

    I hope next time you check-in you see a huge amount of progress!

    Thanks again,

    Martin


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