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Success story in the making!

J P D

New Contributor
Nov 6, 2007
59
6
17
Chicago, Il
Hi everyone,

I was lurking around another website forum that I see many of you are also on (LP) when I came across a link to this site. After spending the past few days looking around I think there is a wealth of information and inspiration here for someone like me to gain from and I would like to become an active part of this group. At first I will most likely only be helping myself by joining in, but hopefully as I progress on my path to success I will be able to return the favor to someone else by sharing some knowledge I've gained along the way.

Last Sunday (11/11) was my 23rd birthday and I really feel like this is going to be my big year. The year where all my hard work and sacrifice is going to materialize. The year where I finally take the necessary steps to get out of the 9-5 rat race and into my desired source of income. I feel that my future success is less of a goal and more of an eventuality. It is certain as long as I continue to stay focused on what it is that I'm after.

This is my story up to this point in my life...

My life changing moment came when I was only 10 years old. Up to this point I was your typical kid with little understanding of life, more interested in playing basketball after school than planing out my future. I remember this day very clearly and think back on it often. It was a very warm summer evening, I was visiting my grandfather in a south Chicago neighborhood. My father and I took a walk to the neighborhood pizza place to get some dinner. I remember turning the corner and seeing a car that was half the height of the others parked along the street and a lot wider. This car was a bright red with black lower half and stuck out instantly from the daily beaters. It was a Ferrari 512bbi. My father likes sports cars and knew that this was something special so of course we went over to look at it. I was amazed. It was the first time I had seen a stick shift car and thought it was some crazy high tech mechanism. After about 5 minutes of looking it over a well dressed guy smelling of cologne comes out of the pizza place and introduces himself as the owner of the car as well as the pizza place. He then took time out of his day to talk with us, show us the engine, start it up, let me sit in it and wiggle the shifter, and when he had to leave he proceeded to "open it up" as he pulled away. By the way, he recognized our last name and because my grandfather gave him some tomatoes from his garden on a few occasions, the pizza was on the house!! I was floored not only by the car but also by the guy. Not only did he have an awesome sports car but he had the power to give out free pizzas. At ten years old I thought this guy could have been the president or something. On our way back home my dad told me more about ferraris and I told him I wanted to know everything about them and how I could someday have one. He came home from work the next day with a book about the history of Ferrari and all the models produced up to that point. I must have read that book a million times and stared at the photos billions of times. For me that was the one instance in my life that set me on a different path. I don't know what would have became of me if we hadn't gone for pizza that day.

My dad told me that the guy was successful because he did extremely well in school and stayed out of trouble and that the nice car was a pay off for hard work. That was all I needed to hear. I became less interested in playing basketball after school and more interested in studying and reading about Ferraris and Lamborghinis. I think my interest in sports cars really gave me a personal incentive to focus on school when I might not have otherwise. I was still just a young kid at this point though, and didn't really understand why school would be important but I was told that it was the path to owning a Ferrari. As I got a little older and other kids started acting out, smoking, ditching school, etc, I realized there would most likely be negative consequences for these actions and I needed to figure out who I was and who I wanted to be in ten years. It was around this time that I seen a show called the lifestyles of the rich and famous. I had no interest in being famous at all, but rich... now that was appealing to me. Its never been so much about having a lot of money, rather the lack of limitations is what appeals to me. Nobody needs to take a month long vacation in the islands or have over a million dollars worth of sports cars in their garage, but they want to and they have that option while most others don't. I wanted to be able to do whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted. I think that's the kind of mindset that starts to shape a future entrepreneur who realizes that there is a better life to be had and in this great country :)cheers: to capitalism) all you have to do is go get it. I figured out that every step I took along the way would effect where I would end up so I made sure to be very responsible in my decisions.

I was about 15/16 when I started thinking about how I was going to achieve this better lifestyle. I spent a lot of time at the library reading everything I could related to my interest. I started with bios on wealthy people. I learned some where involved in real estate, some in investing, some owned successful businesses. I also started to figure out that many of these people never attended college, something that I had always been told was necessary to achieve a successful life. Now that my eyes were open to the different paths to financial success I began to read up even further. I quickly became very interested in real estate then later on in starting a business. I figured since all these things were coming together and I needed even more focus in my life I would make a list of goals and knock them out one by one. I wish I would have dated this list but I was about sixteen years old. The list that hangs on my wall to this day:

1. Graduate H.S. with a diploma (check)
2. No distractions, no drinking/drugs, no parties, no h.s. gossip/drama (check!)
3. Get a job before turning 17 (check, actually ended up getting my first job at the
library)
4. Stay at this job for at least two years. (check, to do this I ended up working two
jobs to keep this part time one after I graduated h.s., but it was a goal and needed to
be achieved)
5. Establish a line of credit and open up a checking/savings account asap after landing
a job. Build good credit and be responsible (check)
6. spend a few years working regular jobs and figure out why I don't want to do
that for the rest of my life. Save as much money as possible, only spend on necessities. (check)
7. Get a cdl at 21 and drive a truck across the country for a few months (check, what
a great experience and its solid job security to fall back on which makes taking
a financial risk a little easier)
8. Get a local driving job, making good money. work this job 3rd shift and spend my
days pursuing my goals (check)
9. Stay nice with the parents so they will let me stay at home and save all this money.
(check, I told myself I would never throw money away by paying rent, collecting rent
and having others pay my mortgage seemed like a smarter plan)

(THIS IS WHERE IT GETS INTERESTING)

10. Use saved money and good credit to get a 2-4unit rental property by the age of 24
and move out (in the process of doing a year early!!!)
11. Come up with a start up business idea (in the process of writing up a plan for a
web based b2b service that I feel very good about)
12. Get another rental property every year for two years (3 total)
13. Get business up and running by age 25.
14. Get into commercial rental property at 27 after getting 3 residential rentals, possibly
with investors on a strip mall or a 5+ apartment building.
15. Further develop business so it becomes my main source of income.
16. Buy a 6.0 diablo before the age of 29 (fingers are crossed)
17. Retire at the age of 32 and begin enjoying the fruits of my labor!!!!
18. Die happy as hell knowing that I have achieved these goals and lived my life by my
terms.

So far I have accomplished everything on my list as I get to that point in my life and I have no reason to believe that I cant accomplish the full list. I wrote this list when I was sixteen, mostly based on info that I read from books on RE investing and business building. I have since realized the importance of investing all this money and have set up a roth ira for myself and started learning about the stock market and forex trading. This all started out because I wanted a Ferrari, now its more like a hobby. Some people learn to play guitar, I am learning how to make a fortune. its fun!!

I have to thank my parents a lot for raising me in a great home and teaching me the proper way to live your life. The Ferrari gave me the motivation, but my parents gave the the proper foundation to build upon. I know they wish that I would just have gone to college and got a safe career, get married, buy a single family house to live out the rest of my days in, etc.. Thats all my parents know. They have no money, infact nobody in my family would be considered well off, but my parents taught me the value of a dollar and how to be responsible with money. We never had cable tv, video games, Internet, never went on vacation, never had anything handed to me. While some ungrateful kids might complain, I feel that is a big part of why I became the disciplined person I am.

That is my story, hope it made for an interesting read. I will continue posting my pursuits in more appropriate sections about starting my business and getting into some rental properties if anyone cares to follow up with me there and watch as I continue along. I'm glad I found a site like this where I can come and share some thoughts and concerns, ask some questions and get some helpful info from like minded individuals who are either already where I want to be or also on their way. Even though I've spent lots of time reading and researching real estate, starting a business, and investing, I really know nothing at all and have tons of questions and lots more to learn. I look forward to the opportunity to talk with you guys.

Take care guys,
John
 

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JesseO

Contributor
Jul 25, 2007
548
31
33
Phoenix, AZ
Great to have you here, I'm 23 as well =) Sounds like you've been a lot smarter in life than I have. There's plenty of good information to sift through.
 

andviv

Gold Contributor
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Jul 27, 2007
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Usually people show up here and say "Hi i'm new here'. Yours is the best introduction I've seen in quite some time. Welcome to the forum.
 

AndrewG

Contributor
Nov 3, 2007
316
30
26
"That is my story, hope it made for an interesting read."

It was a very interesting read!

"2. No distractions, no drinking/drugs, no parties, no h.s. gossip/drama (check!)"

Sounds just like me! I hated high school drama and parties. I never saw the point and knew that if I stay out of it I'll just become more successful much faster. I remember a high school classmate that I knew well, we were in some college classes too and I told him about my businesses. I wanted to motivate him because all he worried about was the next party and getting out of class. I told him he needed to get on a better path and he knew it. Long story short he never changed and less than a year later he's now in prison, most likely for the next 20 years. It's a shame. This doesn't happen to everyone but you never know.
 

rzach41

Contributor
Oct 23, 2007
200
39
25
Incredible that you compiled such a comprehensive list at age 16. I wish you the best of luck this year. Go get that money!
Ryan
 

yveskleinsky

Bronze Contributor
Speedway Pass
Jul 26, 2007
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:Welcome: Can't wait to read the next chapter in your success story!
 

Jorge

Bronze Contributor
Oct 5, 2007
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103
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37
Mendoza, Argentina
Wow!

You should have been my friend to keep me in the right path :p

I wish I could had seen things as clear as you did at that age.

I wish you really the best!
You earn it! :)

Welcome!
 

Yankees338

Bronze Contributor
Jul 24, 2007
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NJ/MD
Wow. Excellent introduction. It's truly an honor to have you here.

I'm 16 now, and this truly is inspirational; it just goes to show how important focus and goal-setting are. It's incredible to hear that you figured all of this out on your own, just by gaining the knowledge.

What are some of the books you read? What else did you use to gather all of that knowledge?

Again, pleasure to have you here. I sincerely wish you the best of luck in the future. Welcome!
 

MJ DeMarco

Administrator
Staff member
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Jul 23, 2007
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Definitely the BEST intro's so far on this forum ... now that's a story! Complete with details! Thanks and we all are looking forward to hearing your progress. Welcome to the Fastlane.
 
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J P D

J P D

New Contributor
Nov 6, 2007
59
6
17
Chicago, Il
Thanks for the welcome guys!

I usually just lurk around other forums, unmotivated to join in and post anything, but I'm looking forward to becoming a part of this group. I like the accountability of sharing my goals with others and I don't plan on making a fool of myself by not following through so stay tuned...

Yankees338, I have read more books than I can remember and probably haven't retained even a third of that info. When I was younger, before I had a job and bought myself a computer, I would go to the library and read book after book in the business and RE sections as well as bios on successful people. I now have the Internet and there is tons of useful info(this site is full of it). I'll go on amazon and search for books relating to goal setting, RE, business, marketing, finance, investing, etc... I usually get a few at a time as I go through them pretty quick. Even if a book is bad, you will most likely still learn something new or different from it so I read anything and everything. I have recently started to network a bit in the local RE community and have met some people who I'm sure will be an invaluable asset.
I wish you the best of luck in your journey to the "fast lane". I know how hard it can be to stay focused on grown up goals at such a young age but everything is telling me it will be worth it.

j p d
 
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J P D

J P D

New Contributor
Nov 6, 2007
59
6
17
Chicago, Il
I am currently driving tractor trailers. I work third shift and drive locally. Not the most glamorous job, but its work that I dont mind getting up and doing and I enjoy talking with the people I see at the docks everyday. The money isn't that bad, and I dont have anyone looking over my shoulder. I just drive around, listen to the radio and think of ideas for my business all night. I'm sure if I had to put up with all the daytime Chicago traffic I would have a different outlook.
 

yveskleinsky

Bronze Contributor
Speedway Pass
Jul 26, 2007
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Thanks for the welcome guys!

I have read more books than I can remember and probably haven't retained even a third of that info. j p d
I can relate to that! I have a voracious appetite for books and knowledge, but retain less than a third (so you're ahead of me! lol). Once I realized this fact I started highlighting important concepts in books. Still didn't help as much as I'd hoped. So now, (and this is probably neurotic on a couple of different levels) I highlight, then tab the highlighted pages, then go back when I am done with the book and type out my notes and review them as I feel necessary. I have retained so much more this way.

Knowledge isn't power- application of knowledge is power. ...But ya gotta remember it first!
 

SteveO

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Jul 24, 2007
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Welcome to the forums. As stated many times, you have done an excellent job of setting a path at an early age.

I think it is time for you to take a close look at your goals again though. Just because they are goals doesn't mean you can't revise them.

Your path on rentals could potentially be accelerated with a bit of focus. Read the book "How to Buy and Sell Apartment Buildings" for a different view. You could be completely out of a job by 27.

Great job!!!
 

TaxGuy

Bronze Contributor
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Apr 28, 2008
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Goodyear, AZ
Can't believe I didn't read this sooner, if so we could've met up by now and hopefully worked together towards a fastlane plan!!!

A lot of your early life experiences mirror mine, i.e. the first car I fell in love with was a Viper when I was 10(have since "seen the light" in Porsche), but most importantly I stayed away from drinking/drugs/gossip in HS and for the most part stayed away from drinking in college(rarely drink as it is now, there's no point and my fiance would kill me :nono:).

As far as reading and creating plans to implement I have finally put my foot on the gas and will hopefully speed past most of my peers while keeping an active mind at ALL times.

Just hoping we can meet up and shoot the breeze before you leave for OKC as I feel there's a lot we can learn from each other and is why I'm hoping to build an active sub-community here in Chicago so we can represent at B&P :yourock:
 

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