How did you do it ?


From: Sim' Hampel

I have a question for those people who have worked full time in a job in the past and while doing so have managed to acquire investments that lead them to be able to stop work and either retire fully or concentrate on building their investments full time.

Either those people who have done it or feel they are in the process of doing it.

What I want to know is, what was/is your strategy for dealing with the commitments of a full time job while also managing and growing your investments.

Information I would like you to supply is:

- The nature of the work you were doing (ie. full time, 9-5, shiftwork, part time, casual, self employed, etc.)

- What type of investments helped you achieve your goal of kicking your job (ie. buy-and-hold, -ve geared, flips, wraps, reno, etc.)

- Over what time frame did you achieve your goal, or what is your target time frame for achieving the goal of leaving your job.

What I'm actually trying to figure out is what strategies other people have implemented to manage job commitments while also building a good enough investment portfolio to allow them to move to full time investment (or indeed retire).

I'm trying to formulate my own strategies to fit in with my goals and circumstances.


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Reply: 1
From: Michael G


Hi, I think I'm one of the more fortunate rats in that I shift work and work an average 1 every 2 days not including holidays.

I started late (27), but a good income has enable to jump in quicker.

Also an understanding Boss, has made my goals easier allowing flexability to attends events as I need to.

A big must is having time off during the week to see solicitors and accountants. That's near impossible to do on weekends.

I think if you work 9-5, you need to arrange time off during the week, either negotiate rostered days off every now and then, or start and fin to give you free daylight hours to do your own work.

I have a good friend who's a 9-5er and the differences in work flexabilty is dramatic and has a direct impact of their investment goals.

I think that's a big issue, getting more time for your own things. Having free time from 5pm to 12am each weekday may limit things. This is just my own view of course.

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Reply: 2
From: Mike .

Hi Sim',

You said: "What I'm actually trying to figure out is what strategies other people have implemented to manage job commitments while also building a good enough investment portfolio to allow them to move to full time investment (or indeed retire)."

At a recent Cashflow night I attended, one of our wise forum people gave us some food for thought on this subject. Time is an essential ingredient to ferret out the good deals. The good deals may be in property or, if not, they may be found in business. So, the point is, make time to find the good deals, wherever they are.

If you work full-time, you haven't got time to get close to the market to find the good deals. This means you're only strategy is likely to be "buy and hold" which isn't going to get you out of the rat race in the short term.

The other ingredient is your comfort zone. Are you willing to replace your full-time job with a part-time job? Plenty of those around. Are you willing to cut back your lifestyle in the short term to make property your business? Once the business is learnt, the income will likely far surpass your current job and you have a real chance of creating much more passive income than "buy and hold" alone.

In my case, when I relocate to London in Sept, my 3 properties here will be nett cashflow positive. So I'll be in a good position to begin doing a few flips, lease options etc and gradually move to part-time work and then leave the workforce for good.

If you or anybody else can put themselves into a nett cashflow position now, so all repayments are taken care of, the only thing stopping you from making more time to do the business is your own comfort zone.

Thanks to our wise sage for that advice.

Regards, Mike
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Reply: 2.1
From: Simon and Julie M

Hi Sim
Hear is a simple strategy that we use.
We believe that timing is everything.
Saving time, using time wisely and most of all having a good time.
1. Saving time.
Ask your self this.
How much time do I waste each day?
2. Using time wisely.
How much of your time is reinvested in your personal development?
3. Having a good time.
Why would you want to do 1 and 2 if was not a positive experience all the time? If you were to do just one new thing consistently each day in a positive way do you think your life would change too?

We added 4 more properties to our portfolio this last financial year with one full and one part time income.

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Reply: 2.1.1
From: Michael Yardney

I did it and looking back at how, I would like to offer these tips:-
1. Become an expert in a small geographic patch..with the limited time available to you, you can't know the market well throughout Melbourne or Sydney. But when you become an expert in one area, you will learn to recognise a bargain when you see one. To maximise the potential of your property investment Choose an area with a long history of high capital growth.
2. Develop the skills you require to become successful, by reading and going to the appropriate seminars. Learn about finance, tax matters, negotiating skills and risk minimisation. They will be your tools to becoming a property multimillionaire.
3. DO SOMETHING.- One of the biggest mistakes I see is investors not getting into the market because of their various fears. Property prices all around Australia are going up by billions of dollars a year and the funny thing is the property doesn’t care who owns it. Don’t let the market get away from you.
4. Allow TIME and the power of compounding to work for you. I don’t know what that $250,000 property you bought today will be worth in 2 years time. The market may be up or it may be down. But I can tell you in 7-8 years time it will be worth half a million dollars, because in Melbourne and Sydney the values of well chosen investments have doubled every 7 years.
5. Be patient – you won’t become a property multimillionaire overnight like some of the gurus advertise, but with time, inflation and compounding on your side, you will develop the financial independence you seek

Michael Yardney
Metropole Properties
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From: JustAMum B

What a great question. Well I started years ago. About a good 15 (or was it 20) years ago, I brought a house on the weekend with my then partner. I recall prices were beginning to move at rates that frightened me, and my partner wanted to buy a house above what the bank was prepared to lend me (a young lady). So we brought a good house, above my initial expectations, and definitely didn't bargain. (Those were the days?) So time went by and I found myself fortunately unfortunately in a position of buying out my first partner. I had a real estate agent sign up tenants, then managed it myself, while I did a full on full time job (I'm sure you know the deal). Interest rates went through the roof, but that was ok. So about 8 years went by. Life went on. My Hubby went and brought a property too. A kid or so arrived and I began the HARDEST job in my work-aholic life. Lightening struck my hubby (or was it a light from a slowly opening door), and we went and brought a rash of properties against our accumulated assets.
Still we are not retired by the income of property, but the future figures and current management look good. I doubt we will ever retire in the true sense of the word. So I hope you have enjoyed your bedtime story, and manage to track a course that gives you good dreams tonight and the nights to come.
Just A Mum
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From: Yuch .

I think most of the forum chatters have already heard a lot about my stories on 'Battle of rats and hamsters', but a lot of people on the forum still don't know about it. Now here is my chance to winge and bitch in public, just simply can't waste it! ;)

I am in a situation where I am suppose to have flexible working hours, as long as I do my 40 hr/week. That's what it says in my employee's contract, and I had been living by the rules until I recently had my performance review. However, in real life, it is not quite like that. I have a manager who is extremely insecure, and he is constantly picking on me and watching over my shoulders. I used to make phone calls to make appointments with solicitor, accountants and real estate agents etc. And he was accusing me of 'not committed' to my job and not being 'loyal' to the company in my performance review!! And I had to sign a performance agreement that basically was designed to kill all my investments. And I had to disclose 'all' my investment activities to my company!

To cut the long story short, the end result is: coming to work every morning is just becoming more and more difficult and also it just makes me more determined to get out of my rat race asap. At the moment, I am aiming to get out of my rat race in 12 mths time.

Personally, I think the quickest way to get out of my rat race will be wrapping and businesses, which is what I am doing right now. However, wrapping is not the ultimate solution, reason being: as soon as I stop working, the banks will not lend me anymore money. I will still need cashflow from somewhere to inject into my wrap business. Then where does $$$$ come from? The answer is: businesses. I am looking to set up a business that generates cashflow before I leave this job, so I can keep investing.

Now I have finished bitching, I am happy. Gotta go.

PS. My manager is off sick today, that's why i can sit here catching up with the forum.

~ The secret to success is to start from scratch and keep on scratching. ~
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Reply: 3
From: Miakat .

I'm working full time and now have 2 'Student Accomodation' IPs. In the initial stages these are very time consuming for someone in full-time employment. I spend nearly every afternoon after work and most of Saturday on these at the beginning, but after a little while it all settles down and I can relax a bit.I guess it's just a case of delayed gratification (delayed relaxation). I have a pretty flexible workplace in which we have a 'Leave-in-Lieu' system which is essential to see solicitors etc. Without it, it would be extremely difficult. I think my boss realises that I spend quite a lot of time on the investment side of things, but he hasn't challenged me yet. I've signed up for another 3.5 years with my job so that is my time frame by which I can leave this job and begin full-time investing.

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Reply: 3.1
From: Glenn Mott

After going broke in 1992, I managed to get a job working at the nightshift, 8pm - 4am. There was always overtime available and I managed to pay off my debts and start saving again. As there was overtime available, I did as much as I could while still maintaining personal relationships (having a tendency to go overboard in everything I do) and started to get an interest in property.

These working hours were fantastic for me as I would come home at 4am and be awake at 12pm with 8 hours available to me before my next shift. This allows plenty of time to look for property, go to the beach, go to the gym, go to the bank, ect.

The overtime was fantastic and allowed me to lead a very comfortable life as well as give me heaps of time to do other stuff.

However, the catch is...if you have a partner, they absolutely hate you working nightshift if they don't and will give you no end of grief about it regardless of the benefits to you.

One of the guys I used to work with there has bought 5 properties since working there on what a lot of Sydneysiders would say is a very modest income. His properties are all within a 5km radius of the CBD and as he has all this time available to him, manages the properties himself (a key for anyone interested in property) quite easily.

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Reply: 3.1.1
From: Robert Forward

Hi Sim

Glen, Michael G and myself are all in what is probably the best circumstances.

We all work shift work (including night shifts) and this allows so much extra time for investing and looking into investments.

I really only work 2 days out of every 10, it's great. These 2 days are full day shift from 8am till 5pm shifts then I have 2 days of 2pm starts and the 2 days of night shift followed by 4 days off.

This allows me to in effect look at investments see accountants/solicitors the bank etc up to 8 days out of 10. The best thing is that on my night shift I get to have 2-4 hours sleep too, so I'll come home and have another 4 hours sleep and have the rest of the day to look. Not to mention that I look for properties whilst at work and send links home to myself for further investigation.

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From: Anonymous

Try the 50% rule.
Identify time wasters, and try and spend 50% less time on them.
The odd sickie might help. Line uo your appointments one after the other.

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