You’re about to discover how a young couple, Heather and Jovany, became full-time creative house flippers and achieved their real estate goals. So if you want to quit your job and have control over your time, you’re going to love this interview!
I have the pleasure of introducing you to a young couple whose lives have been forever changed by the Freedom Mentor Apprentice Program. They've become full-time, creative house flippers, and now have a financial future that they are in control of and are absolutely loving it! Let's meet Heather and Jovany.
Why Freedom Mentor?
Brian: Heather, Jovany, I'm so excited for you guys to join us today. I think this is going to be a wonderful time learning more about you, and I think it'll be inspiring and educational. So, if it works, I just want to dive in and ask some questions. Where were you guys before you get started with Freedom Mentor?
Heather: I wanted to be an investor, but I really wanted to understand the industry, so I got my real estate license. I was a semi-new realtor; I think I was two years into the industry when we came into Freedom Mentor.
Jovany: I was working a job. I had read all the books of Robert Kiyosaki and was trying to be an investor, but only just living in a house, fixing it up and then trying to escalate that, but never really doing anything. My biggest thing was always how do I use other people's money? I just didn't get it. I just didn't understand that concept.
Brian: So you were working regular jobs, you wanted to get into real estate, but you weren't really breaking through. What was that like? Was it frustrating?
Heather: I think our biggest question, and all the books we were reading, everything that we listened to, it always came down to, “how do you do this with other people's money?”. That was the secret sauce that we couldn't figure out. We're like, we want to do this, we know how to get houses, but how do you get it without having all this money? And so we did do an interview with the Rich Dad Poor Dad program from Robert Kiyosaki and their program was I think half the price of what Freedom Mentor was. We interviewed with both, and then sat down and had this conversation, “Are we actually going to go with someone other than Robert Kiyosaki?”. Because we were big followers of him! But we just trusted our gut. We had seen a lot of videos of Phil online and, I don't know, there was just something intuitively telling us that that was the right path to go down, even though it was more money. We just felt like we were going to have more of a one-on-one coaching opportunity, that there was going to be more hands-on involvement. I think with the other programs that we had interviewed with; they were bigger corporations and it felt so far removed from the person we wanted to be coached by. And so we just were like, let's just go all in, and that's what we did.
Brian: That's fascinating because someone like Robert Kiyosaki, everyone's heard of him, he has tons of videos on YouTube too. You mentioned the coaching, were you feeling like you weren't going to get much of that one-on-one support with the other mentorship programs?
Jovany: We did all the interviews and stuff, but one night I was just watching YouTube videos and I typed in how to use other people's money. This video came up and it was Phil teaching a class about how to use owner financing and do these different things, and he gave me the information. Nobody else on YouTube was giving that information then. So I was just listening. And then in that class he talked about how to take a college house and rent them by the room and that's how you can leverage your property instead of making it just a single-family rental. Because we were always doing the math and it was like, so we're going to make fifty bucks on a house, and this is how we're going to get rich? This is how I'm going to get out of work? There's no way! I'll have to have a hundred houses to do that! And so that's when we really started to watch all the videos and we went backwards, and we just started just integrating with that and we just left the whole Robert Kiyosaki thing behind after that.
Most Memorable Deals
Brian: That's awesome. And it's interesting when you bring up cash, because obviously we've talked about this many times since, but there's so many people that feel like that is, as you said, the secret sauce. If I can get the cash, there's no limit to the deals I can do. And so I know we spent a lot of time on these calls just talking through, “Hey, is this a good deal? Should we put money here whether we can find it or not?” And you guys closed a lot of deals, made a half a million dollars with us. What are some of the highlights? Are there a few of these deals that stand out?
Heather: I think Lazy River, our biggest renovation project. It was in a rural area, but it was like 3,300 square feet. There was an upstairs, a basement and kind of connected was a guest house and it was on 2.2 acres. Just a big property, so it almost felt like we were renovating three homes because we were renovating the entire upstairs. We finished the basement, and we renovated the guest house.
This one was a property that we really had to help the homeowners. They were in a financial situation where they didn't have a loan on the home, but they were in arrears on property taxes, and they needed money. So they had this huge property, but it just financially wasn't working for them. They needed help. And we got creative on how we helped them get into another home so that way we could take over this property. It was just a big project, but it was actually the renovation that we had the biggest return, and we were able to meet our profit share and graduate from the program with this one.
Jovany: And keep in mind, we graduated off that property, but that was our first renovation that we did through the whole time. So everybody always thinks that you're flipping all these houses, but we didn't do it until our 20th one. And me and you, Brian, we've talked a lot, and it was always, it has to make sense and this one just made sense.
Heather: A lot of the times you can clean up the property, do little cosmetic things, you don't have to do the whole HGTV renovation on every single house. Some houses, yes, it makes sense and some houses it does not make sense. On this particular property, it was in such bad shape and there was enough room that it made sense that we did a full renovation on this property. We learned a lot and it was very challenging, but that one I would say was one of our coolest ones to watch it completely transform. But it was also stressful with the timing going into the winter season, the holiday season, and elections. So that one had quite a bit of pressure on us, but that was probably my favorite.
Jovany: Another memorable deal was one where we made about $25,000 off just purchasing $65 of documents. And when I tell people that they're like, “$65, how is that possible?”. But when you know, you can do it.
Brian: As you said, it has to be the right deal and I think that's probably one of the harder pieces. I mean first and foremost you need to get the deals coming your way, but once they are to have the patience to be selective. Was that something that you grew into? Did you just take our word for it?
Jovany: So I can just talk about my experience. When we first started, I wanted every deal. I just was trying to make it happen because I was working a nine to five, I was working 16-hour days to try to make this happen. Whatever it took to be free. And I literally called 500 people and I was just calling and calling. I finally did get a deal out of it, and it was a pretty good deal, I made $40,000 off it. But now that I look back at all those calls, there was probably another three or four deals that I could have made happen, but I didn't know any better. And part of it too, our journey, we have lost a lot of money as well too because we didn't listen to the coaching.
Heather: Can I chime in on that too? So part of what our learning process was, we wanted to have cashflow. Tying back into us being Robert Kiyosaki people, we wanted cashflow. So while we were doing this program, we were buying and holding some of our properties and turning them into vacation rentals, which you need to clean up, furnish, and then start renting them out. You're not recovering your money very quickly. And at the same time, he had a full-time job and we're trying to flip. We ended up having more properties than we knew what to do with. At that time it was just a really good time for us in the market, but we weren't as knowledgeable as we needed to be to really know what to do with the properties. So we got ahead of ourselves. And Phil had told us, do the flipping first. Build up your reserves before you hold real estate. And we kind of had too many goals going on at once I think and we were growing a little big for our britches.
Becoming a Successful House Flipping Team
Brian: So it took you guys a while to kind of have that sink in and you started reeling it back in. Is that something that you've taken with you after graduating and you just keep a more controlled pace in what goes in your pipeline?
Jovany: Absolutely. Now when I talk to sellers, they have to convince me to take their property because I'm not buying their property unless it makes sense. And so because of that approach, we've gotten a lot of good deals where we do owner financing and stuff like that. And just being very creative with the sellers.
Heather: I think too, and not everyone's going to have this, but with us, we balance each other out very well. He's a lot more of the risk taker and let's just buy a thousand houses and I am a little bit more like, “Whoa, whoa, whoa, let's run the numbers. Is that a little bit too much?” So he pulls me out of my comfort zone and I kind of reel him in a little bit. And I think we had to learn to play on each other's strengths and weaknesses to really find the balance that worked for us. So I think that was helpful too.
Becoming Full Time House Flippers
Brain: And that's why you guys have a successful team. So now you guys do this full time, it's just taking on deals, but in picking the right ones. Jovany, that had to be a wonderful step to put in that notice, heading towards the door of freedom. Tell me about that.
Jovany: Part of the crazy part about it is, I left my job during the pandemic. So the pandemic hit I in February, we already had graduated. By August, I was like, I can't work like this anymore, I have to go full-time, and I just did it. I remember my coworkers saying, “You're leaving now?”. And I think that because of the program, it taught me to understand that it doesn't matter what state the economy is in. People are going to be selling, people are going to need to discount because we're looking to problem solve for people. And when I realized that, and I wrap my head around it, that it doesn't matter if there's a pandemic, it doesn't matter if we're going into a recession, it doesn't matter because I can help people and solve their problems. And I always tell people that we are people of God, and I know that God will take care of our family and I will help you as long as you're ready to go and you're motivated, I will help you. They understand that and they're very appreciative because I'm upfront with them. I tell them everything that investors are going to tell them, the bait and switch, all the details. I give them so much information just at the phone call and whether they go with me or not, they're they really appreciate all the information. And majority of the time they'll call me back or they'll just go with me.
Netting $500,000 Profit Share
Brian: And that's probably what we focus on the most. It must be a deal that makes sense for us and make sense for the seller. It's got to be a win-win. And I love that you've always spent the time building the rapport with the seller so that you can help them because at the end of the day, you're there to provide a solution so they can move forward with life. And as we learn to master taking care of problems, we make a great profit at the same time, and it's allowed you guys to just shift your future out of the regular rat race nine to five, and now control more of where you want to go and what you want to accomplish. So that's got to be liberating and wonderful for your family, and I'm so glad you came to us and decided to work with Freedom Mentor to accomplish that goal because we love transforming lives. How did it feel to get through that rehab, accomplish your goal? You've now made a net of $500,000. What was that like for you guys?
Heather: That was a big moment for us, and it was long awaited. Jovany listened to so many coaching calls and heard students graduate very early on in different states, and it just was like, “We got to do this!” And when we finally hit that last deal, hit our profit share, it was kind of like a weight was lifted off our shoulders. But also a level of confidence; we did this, and we can keep doing this. And I think it was shortly after that is when he put in his notice for his corporate job and we're like, we're just going all in.
Freedom Mentor Coaches
Brian: What's something good that you liked about this program? We talked about when you were getting started and why you selected to go with Freedom Mentor, but once you got into it, what are some of the things that maybe you weren't expecting that you were surprised by that were great for you?
Jovany: For me was the coaching. Like you've mentioned, Brian, we built a good relationship. I was calling you; I remember knowing your schedule in and out, but even when you weren't available, there are other coaches. I wanted to talk to you because you knew the deal and I just kind of felt comfortable. But it also let me tell the sellers that I'm talking to that, “Hey, I need somebody that I need to talk to and run this by”. And it wasn't just me answering the question. So that's where I had to really shift because I always wanted to be like, "I know everything, I know all the answers". But then when I shifted it to, "I need to get approval from this or that, my business partners need to look at this", it took a lot of the stress off me.
Heather: I would agree with that. Just having different coaches I felt was helpful. I love talking to Phil. I love his insight and I would love when I would be the one on the call with him and we would just kind of banter back and forth about the market and stuff. We would have fun conversations, but then even coach Stephanie, she was great. She would bring a lot of insight and then talking with you, so that's helpful because Phil, he's like the master of it, and sometimes you don't know if I'm ready for master level. Or we would get Phil's opinion on it and then Brian's and then kind of make our own way with it. I liked that.
Brian: Sure. And it's interesting because we might have slightly different approaches in style, but we're all on the same page. We're going to do it the Freedom Mentor way. We're going to make sure that it makes sense and it's great. And as you guys know, we connect behind the scenes and review deals as well to make sure we're all staying on the same page. So it's really a team effort.
Freedom Mentor Community
Jovany: Even on top of that though, I call, and I listen to a lot of people's calls and conversations. Even to this day, I'll call and listen, and I've done this for a long time. This is what really helped me, what I do is I try to answer in my own head what that question is, and then I listen to the coach and how they responded to it. And then when I started to notice I was getting very close to it, I knew I was picking up a lot of these things and understanding. And so that's where I liked picking up a lot of the little nuggets from other people.
Brian: So just the benefit of getting on those group calls, hearing what other people are doing, and of course knowing that there's no competition because these are not people in your market. You're learning from people across the country and not everything is going to be a fit and work the same way in the market, but that's just so powerful. We've seen that for years just be such a benefit. Just that overall community aspect of it.
Real Estate Investing the Freedom Mentor Way
Heather: And I want to chime into that too. I think for anyone that's on the fence about should I get a mentor, should I try this on my own? We had friends, our close circle, people that knew what we were doing when we had our mentorship, and their thoughts were, “You're splitting all that money with somebody else?”. And of course we've talked about you could make a hundred percent of nothing without him. But I think the biggest thing for me being that I'm a realtor and I see both sides of things, I see the investors that approach me from their mentorship versus the mentorship that we got with Phil.
I have to say, hands down that if you learn nothing else but how to get deals without going to a realtor, then you've learned so much that's invaluable. That is exactly why I think you should work with Phil. If you have somebody who can teach you to get directly connected with homeowners that are in need, that maybe it doesn't make sense for them to go on market with a realtor because they have hurdles and it's not the best fit for them to have a realtor, that's when they should be working with an investor. And those are the types of leads that investors should be looking for and connecting with. And Phil can teach you exactly how to do that. And that right there is priceless to me.
Every Successful Real Estate Investor Has a Mentor
As Heather and Jovany shared, they did their research and wanted the best coaching and mentoring they could find, which is why they chose Freedom Mentor. If you want the opportunity to achieve success and control your financial future, like Heather and Jovany have, check out our mentorship program here: Freedom Mentor Apprentice Program.
Questions or comments? Text FREEDOM to 305-315-8030.