What’s the first reaction you get when you tell new friends that you’re a landlord? Something along the lines of “Oh I could never do that because I don’t want to fix a toilet at three in the morning”?
Sure, some times people will be interested, but really they just want to hear your horror stories. People love living through others miseries. I know I write a lot of miserable stories 8′]
And they get read much more than the helpful happy stories!!!
But what happens when you run into another landlord?
Suddenly you have a new friend, a new resource (much like this site) someone you are usually a bit more comfortable with.
Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill was one of the first books I read when I first started switching from an employee mindset to more of a what can I do to succeed mind set. It is quite old now as it was originally released in the late 1930’s, but it still contains some nuggets.
Also since it’s quite old, it is available for free in many places (although I have two paperback copies that I regularly re-read). I have found it for free in iTunes and I’ve provided a link below for a PDF version I found on line if you’d like to read it that way.
Other people have borrowed quite a few of the tidbits in it to create their own books and thoughts that can be traced almost directly back to this book. The biggest example most likely being “The Secret”.
Now personally I think the concept of The Secret was rather weak as just focusing on something does not cause those results, but it was perfectly in line at the time with the mindset of people who felt entitled and there are far to many people like that out there.
Sorry if it feels like I’ve gone off on a bit of a tangent here, but I was trying to point something out that Napoleon Hill pointed out to me years ago.
Part of it was surrounding yourself with like minded people.
Crabs In a Barrel
Perhaps you’ve heard this before. You become most like the five people you spend the most time with. If you look around your main circle of friends, you find that they are all very similar in wealth, income and social status with you.
Sure there are peaks and valleys, but for the most part you all fall in line with similar goals, dreams or a lack of both. This can be both a good thing and bad thing depending on your goals (and your friends…).
One story I have heard illustrating this the best is the story of crabs in a barrel. If you put a bunch of crabs in a barrel and watch them for a while invariably one of them starts climbing out of the barrel. It manages to get on top of the other crabs, maybe hook it’s pincher onto something and suddenly it can sense freedom.
Now I don’t know if it’s something internal or maybe the other crabs think they can simply ride along, but they invariably grab that crab that is so close to freedom and drag it right back into the barrel. Now they are all back on the same level and it’s status quo. This imitates our lives.
When I first started out investing in Real Estate, that’s how I often felt when I explained to people what I was doing. The people around me didn’t want me to escape, they wanted me to hang around with them and stay where they were.
I’d mention tenants and properties and I’d hear the story about their uncle’s friend’s brother’s tenant who was a nightmare or how their sister’s friends co-worker lost all his money on a rental property.
I’d talk about renovations and hear stories about their former co-worker’s buddies neighbor who was ripped off by contractors.
I’d talk about long term security by owning property and they’d bring up the housing crash from 15 years ago (now they can just bring up the one from 2007, but I don’t hang with those people anymore).
After a while it seems like it’s just easier to go with the crowd and give up on our ideas about getting ahead. But if you’re still reading this or have been reading my other articles I have a feeling you aren’t paying that much attention to that crowd.
You already understand you can walk to the beat of your own drummer or are already surrounding yourself with people who can help elevate you. So for that I applaud you, and I thank you because you’re still reading.
Surrounding yourself with like minded people can go two ways. One you can stay in that barrel with the other crabs, or two you can find a better group of crabs to hang with. Ones that want you to escape.
This is where mastermind groups or local real estate networking groups can really pay dividends for you.
I was a member of a local Real Estate group for years and created some great friendships there. The group met once a month, but several of us always ended up talking multiple times a month or getting together to discuss Real Estate or Real Estate strategies. We were our own little mastermind group.
It kept us on our toes and it kept us hungry and excited. Many of us had dreams of owning dozens of properties and many of us met those dreams, because that’s what like minded people can help you achieve.
Now a word of caution, not all Real Estate groups are equal. Some just want you to join so they can make money off your membership, so they can sell you products and services and so they can grow whether you do or not.
The same goes for many of the individuals who join these groups. They’re looking for the short cuts, the quick way to make money in Real Estate. They are usually not the people you want to end up with as short cuts can come back to bite you.
You want to be around like minded individuals who have similar goals.
If you’re not currently networking with other landlords, you really need to, especially other local landlords. By talking with other people in your area you can be more aware of changes to local laws that directly affect you.
You can share resources like contractors and repair people.
You can compare rents easier and form a better idea of what the market is doing.
All of these bonuses and more can be created just by hanging out with people who are like you!
And all it takes is just a few people. It might just be two of you bouncing stories and experiences back and forth, but ideally if there is five or six of you there is more experiences, more help and more ideas that can float around.
Bottom line you really need to find some like minded people if you really want to thrive in the landlord business!
I have some more thoughts on this I’ll share with you in some upcoming posts, but in the meantime, are any of you currently in a mastermind group or a Real Estate group you’re finding beneficial? If so, I’d love to hear about it, so leave me a comment or send me an email and tell me more.