We’re hitting a big milestone today – this is the 100th episode of the REtipster Podcast!

We’ve had a lot of great conversations with great people and I think every episode we’ve has brought immense value to the table. In this conversation, Jaren and I are going to reflect back on where the show has been, how it all started, some of the highs and lows, some of our favorite conversations, and where we think the podcast is going.

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Episode 100 Transcription

Seth: Hey, everybody how’s it going? This is Seth and Jaren, and you’re listening to the REtipster podcast. And today is a special day because this is the 100th episode of this show. So, we’ve had a lot of great conversations with a lot of great people. And I think every episode we’ve done has brought immense value to the table. In this conversation, it’s just going to be Jaren and I, and we’re going to reflect back on where the show has been. I’ll talk a little bit about how it all started. Some of the highs and lows and some of our favorite conversations that we’ve had and where we think the podcast is going. So, it’s kind of an informal hangout with the two of us.

So, the story behind the podcast and why REtipster podcast is a thing at all. So, this happened probably in like 2017, somewhere in that timeframe. I had been running REtipster for several years at that point. And I’d spent tons and tons of time building blog content and making videos and that kind of thing. But I always knew there was this segment of people out there that doesn’t do blogs and stuff. Like they don’t read blogs or they don’t watch videos. They’re just looking for podcast stuff. And honestly, even myself, that’s kind of how I was for a lot of years, because I don’t have time to read blog posts or watch videos when commuting or working out. And I want information in my ear and I knew that I wasn’t really serving those people.

And it’s just something I was kind of apprehensive about doing, and I’ve resisted it for a long time because talking wasn’t an area of comfort for me. And it’s still not easy, honestly, but I knew it was a struggle worth overcoming because if I can make this work, if I could create value for people who are just willing to listen, you can go a long way. And man, I just feel like as a side note, I feel like it has really helped me improve as a verbal communicator. Like I can tell in some of the videos and other conversations I did prior to starting the podcast, it’s kind of helped me just be more aware of how I sound and I’ve got more enthusiasm and stuff. And not that I’m like great at this yet, but just having this kind of forced practice in podcast format has been super helpful.

That’s also been a really great opportunity for us to connect with other names and influencers that otherwise we would never talk to. One of the early episodes we did, episode 10 is when I got to interview Jaren for the first time. And we learned about his foray into the land business and some of his success. And it’s just really cool to see where some of these conversations lead to in terms of deeper relationships and getting to know people and opening up a lot of doors in terms of what I personally have learned along the way. And Jaren, you can feel free to jump in at any point.

But I know prior to the podcast, I was sort of like tunnel vision in terms of the things that I would write about on the blog and make videos about, it was basically just whatever I knew. I know land, I know rental properties, a little bit about household sailing, a little bit of this, a little bit of that. And so, I would sort of talk about those things. But having a lot of these other conversations with other influencers and real estate investors just makes me aware of how huge the real estate industry is. There are so many different directions you can choose to go. Ultimately, I’ve just become very aware that I will never be the best at anything that I’m doing. There’s always going to be somebody out there who’s bigger and better and more successful than me. And I’m totally cool with that. I learned to accept that a long time ago and I’m pretty content with where I stand and what I can do is a land investor, content creator, and the few things that I understand well.

Jaren: Yeah, I think what your superpower is, is teaching. The reality is there might be other guys that do more volume in land or might have more experience in this or that type of real estate. But I think where you really shine and I think it’s just a gift that you have is your ability to break down extremely complicated subjects into a very systematic step-by-step, like “baby steps,” process and make it where it’s approachable for anybody that subscribes to your content, whether it’s video or writing or podcasting.

And it always shocks me. And I’ve heard you say it several times, but it always shocks me when you say that you don’t feel like you’re a good communicator or that this isn’t a point of comfort for you to be able to jump on the podcast because time and time again, in my head, in my internal dialogue, I look to you as an example that I tried to emulate with the way that I communicate.

I feel like you have this ability to not say too much or too little. Like you say, the exact perfect amount that needs to be said so that people can retain it. And I feel like I have on a spectrum, my default is to just verbally vomit on people and just be like way too expressive or way too excited and be a little bit more all over the place with my thought process.

But working with you, something that I really try to implement is “Okay, I need to be able to say this very concisely, like not too much, not too little, but exactly the right amount.” And I think that you’re pretty good at it. I think it might be the fact that because it’s not a default strength for you, maybe you’ve just really put in the work to hone the craft, but you really have honed the craft, man.

Seth: That’s awesome man, I appreciate that. It’s really nice from you to say. I don’t think you verbally vomit. I mean, you talk more than I do, but I don’t think you overdo it or go too far. It’s just difference in style.

Jaren: Yeah, but I have to be really intentional. I’ve gotten some feedback in the past from the people that I care about, who’s like, “Hey, you need to be working on being more concise.” And even though that stung, when I gotten that feedback, even from like people like my wife, like multiple different sources it definitely stings, but I think it’s true. Like a good communicator knows how to bring somebody from point A to point Z in the most efficient way possible, with the fewest words as possible.

And even in my writing, I used to think that trying to sound sophisticated or using fancy language or whatever am I writing, would make me come across as impressive, but it doesn’t at all. All it does is muddy up the waters and miss something that you really have taught me over and over again from a communication standpoint, is that being as short and sweet as you can be while still getting the point across is the overarching principle in communication.

Seth: And just a side note on that. I think Jaren, you’ve done really well at taking hard feedback in a lot of different areas. That’s something that it’s not really fun for anybody to be told like, “Hey, it’s not good enough here,” or “You need to do this different,” or “Somehow this has to change.” I don’t think any human enjoys hearing that. And some people literally won’t tolerate it. That will cause them to leave a job or leave a relationship or give up on their dream or whatever. I just know you’ve been really resilient at hearing that kind of feedback and not letting it destroy you internally, but just like wrestling with it and moving forward and doing better. And that’s truly admirable. It’s a huge quality.

Jaren: Thanks man. Yeah. I just think it’s really important to remain teachable. If you don’t, you’re going to hinder your ability to grow.

Seth: Another interesting thing, I don’t know if I discovered, but just been made more aware of it with all the different people we’ve talked to is that people really love talking about their highlights. I think we’re almost sort of programmed in our society anyway. Like that’s what you let show. You don’t let your weaknesses show. You don’t let your failures show. You don’t talk about that. You don’t have problems. You just talk about where you have all the gold stars. I think that’s pretty normal.

I’m not like looking down on anybody who does that. I do that all the time when I get interviewed by other people, but it does make me wonder, “Why do we do that? Why don’t we talk more about our shortcomings?” Like, what are we afraid of if we do that, what do we think is going to happen?

Because I think that kind of vulnerability is actually a far greater strength in a lot of cases than trying to look strong. If somebody is willing to be real and just be honest about something, it’s so rare. That’s something that I would like to do a better job at just like in life, in general, not even just with REtipster stuff, but just being okay, letting my failure show, not having to be the best smartest person in the room. Just like saying, “Hey, you’re better than me. Let’s hear what you have to say about it.”

Especially in the real estate investing education space, people don’t do that. That’s like not how you operate. Like you need to come across as the greatest person who has all the best ideas. And I do understand to a point why that assumption exists and why people act like that. Because obviously you do have good ideas or you wouldn’t be trying to say anything, but at the same time, you got to let that other side show and have that contrast there. And most people don’t seem to do that.

Jaren: I think you have to have a certain level of results in order to be able to be vulnerable like that though, because if you don’t have a successful track record to back up that vulnerability, then you’re not going to really have much influence. Because people at the end of the day, they want to hear what you have to say because you have something that can help them. But if all you have is like, “Yeah, I just failed at everything I’ve ever done in my entire life,” that’s not really going to help people out there. So, they’re just be like, “Oh, thanks for being honest.” And then they’ll move on.

I think one of the most powerful things you can do for people is if you do have a certain level of success, being honest about the struggles to get there and the limiting beliefs and the self-doubts and all that stuff. Again, I think you do a really good job of that, especially being in this space, because I think real estate just attracts kind of more, I don’t want to say the word “arrogant,” but a personality that’s kind of domineering and “ra-ra” and those people don’t have the ability to share their insecurities and vulnerabilities.

But for people coming up who are looking at those guys is the shining light of “Maybe someday I can be like that guy.” It’s really powerful to just be human and show that, “Hey, I struggled too and I doubt myself too, but you deal with that and you keep going and you’ll eventually get there.”

Seth: Sort of like there’s been this template established for like, “This is what an online personality is supposed to look like. This is what you got to do.” In the real estate world at least, I feel like that’s really stuck and it’s been hard to break that mold. There are other things like people who teach YouTube and blogging where they’ve definitely gotten away from that. Like they’re not super arrogant, pretty honest about it, but among the real estate crowd, it just seems like, I don’t mean to say everybody, but a lot of people seem, I don’t know if they’re like faking it or if they’re real, but just that attitude is there, kind of that “arrogant.”

Jaren: I’m the greatest thing since sliced bread and da-da-da-da.

Seth: For sure. Anyway, just some observations and lessons and things that I’ve picked up along the way. It’s been a little over two years now, and I know there’s been different sort of phases that the show has gone through.

Well, currently we’re publishing episodes every other week, which is not that frequent. It’s actually pretty infrequent for most podcasts. For a section in there, we were doing them every week. That was for me personally, with all of the psyching up, it takes me to do a podcast conversation that was becoming a little much. Yeah, it’s gone through different phases and different highs and lows. And some conversations were awesome, a few of them were horrible and I’m not going to name which ones. But if you listen to all one hundred, you might be able to figure out which ones.

Jaren: I know which ones you’re talking about.

Seth: Yeah. Those are few hours of my life I wish I could get back.

Jaren: That’s hilarious.

Seth: Yeah. It’s been cool just to be part of this. I’ve listened to lots of podcasts over the years and I never thought years ago that I would actually have my own and drive the ship on one of them. So, it’s pretty cool.

Jaren: Yeah. It’s been really exciting. And a real honor to be along the journey, at least a part of it. I think the first 25 episodes I wasn’t part of.

Seth: Yeah. I think episode 24 was the first one, where Jaren was officially part of this thing. That’s a lot of REtipster history to be part of. So, it’s been really cool to have you along for the ride.

Jaren: Yeah, man. It’s been awesome. Well, let’s go through what our favorite episodes have been, man. I’m really curious to hear what your thoughts are. I have a handful. I think we have like, I don’t know, roughly 10, right? Between the two of us.

Seth: Yeah. We both tried to come up with 10 and a bunch of them sort of overlap. So, we don’t actually have 20 here, but we’ll just go through the ones that we both came up with here. Do you want to go first or should I go first?

Jaren: You go first.

Seth: Okay. These aren’t in any particular order, it’s not like the first one I’m mentioning is the best, but one of them that I thought was pretty fun was episode 61, where we talked about Dave Ramsey versus Robert Kiyosaki about whether debt is a good thing or a bad thing. I don’t know what it was about that, but that was like a super popular episode. Like tons of people listen to that one. Maybe it’s because we use those two well-known names in the title. That’s my best guess.

It was just a really fun conversation. I think that was actually one of the first ones we did for a stint there. We did a bunch of more where it was just Jaren and me. We didn’t have a guess. We were just going back and forth. I think that was the first one of several where we did that and just had really good things to say. And it was one of those things where I didn’t even really know all the thoughts that were in my head until we talked about it and a bunch of stuff came out and it was just like, “Oh, interesting.” I remember listening to it after the fact and really enjoying our conversation.

Jaren: Yeah. Yeah. I actually had that when I set up my top 10, that was one of the leading contenders. I think it ended up being number 11 or 12. It was just a really honest dialogue about debt. And being in real estate a lot of people like those two figures, but they have pretty opposing views on some things. So, I just kind of walking through the different philosophies and then kind of coming to a conclusion of what we both believe personally about it. It was also really helpful for me as well.

Seth: Yeah. You’re right. It’s almost sort of like this inner conflict because I know they’re both right but they don’t agree. So, they can’t both be right. Where are they right and where they’re wrong? I felt like we just picked it apart and dissected it pretty well.

You can check out that one if you want to at retipster.com/61. And by the way, again, this is episode 100. So, if you want to see a list of all of these things, we’re talking about individual links to each one, you can see the show notes for this episode at retipster.com/100.

Jaren: Now the way that I ordered mine are kind of in my absolute number one, two, three and so on.

Seth: What was your first one then?

Jaren: My first one is episode 49 with Diego Corzo.

Seth: That was a good one.

Jaren: Yeah. It was just his story. His whole coming here with his parents coming illegally and then growing up, running into issues with college, and all this different stuff that he ran into and still despite all of the obstacles that were stacked up against him, he became very successful in real estate and is continuing to be successful. And the fact that he had a stutter that he overcame and I just found his episode extremely inspirational.

And one of the few episodes that in my own personal life, I’ve thought through a lot. He’s come to mind several times when I’ve been doing my own version of the grind and needing a little boost of inspiration. I kind of think through our interview with him and what he’s been able to accomplish in his life. So that was probably the most inspirational one for me.

Seth: That was also on my list. And it is kind of interesting, a lot of these conversations, sometimes I know ahead of time, this is going to be an awesome interview. Other times, I have no idea where it’s going to go. I might even think the interview might sort of not be that great, but they come out like really, really good. And so, it was kind of interesting to go into it, not knowing what’s going to come out. And then on the other side, I was like, “Wow, that was an awesome conversation.”

Jaren: Yeah, it was really good.

Seth: For me, another one that is actually sort of two rolled into one because we talked about, it was a very similar theme between both conversations, but when we interviewed Keith Weinhold, I believe it was episode 29 and episode 45, where he just kind of tore apart a lot of money myths. I think some of them were sort of meant to be kind of provocative, but others, they’re just true. Just things that don’t make sense that a lot of us have been told or that we’ve grown up to believe in. We did have some like back and forth and debate involved in that too, kind of like challenging his ideas fire bag and that kind of thing, all friendly. But we covered a lot of good ground there and a lot of interesting points.

Jaren: Yeah, I think so too. I feel like I’ve still gone back and forth between a lot of the conversations like with the Robert Kiyosaki versus Dave Ramsey, then also the Keith Weinhold stuff.

I feel like for me, the best working framework so far with that, at least for me personally, is when it comes to your personal life, don’t have debt, credit card debt. Even though you can make a justification based on the cash-on-cash return and kind of the whole concept of leverage. I just think that practically there’s something simple and beautiful about having a debt-free life, which I’m not there yet, but I’m working towards being debt-free personally.

But when it comes to assets that cover the cost of the debt, I think that’s when that makes sense. So, if I can use debt to buy something that will cover not only the cost of the debt itself, but also pay me money on top of it, that’s a win-win every single time. Because no matter what situation you get into, practically you’re not really stuck with debt. Your assets are paying for it. So, you talk about a rental property for example. You have a mortgage. The rent covers the mortgage and then pay you money on top of it. That’s a great situation.

And if you ever have an opportunity present itself to you where it’s like that, where the asset that you’re using debt to buy will cover the cost of debt and then pay you something on top of it, I think that makes sense. So maybe in the realm of investing, maybe in the realm of like a business, if you use debt to acquire a business. Maybe you buy an insurance brokerage and you have people who are paying their monthly bill every single month so you have cashflow. That would make sense to me.

If I take out $100,000 to buy a business that’s paying me $10,000 a month and it totally pays for that loan, I think that that’s a win-win every day. So, for me, moving forward in my life, the framework that I am personally approaching is that I want as much debt as I can possibly get if I’m buying something that will cover the cost of that debt and pay me on top. If it’s not that situation like a car or like other types of things like credit cards and so on, I’m just going to completely stay away from it.

Seth: Yeah. Interesting. Actually, for the first time in my life, I’m in the very early stages of getting a pre-approval for commercial financing, a possible project, and we’ll get into it. But anyway, in just sending in my initial tax returns and personal financial statement and all this stuff, it was just interesting hearing the banker’s perspective on how just amazing it looked and all this stuff because I don’t have any personal debt currently.

Jaren: Including your house.

Seth: Yeah, that’s right. But interesting thing is pretty much any conventional bank has a point at which they’re going to say, “Okay, you’re done. We’ve lent you enough money. We’re not going to do anymore. Pay off some of the stuff first.” Part of that decision is based on their exposure with you, what industry you’re in and all of this stuff.

But in a way, whatever their thought is on, “We don’t feel comfortable with this anymore.” Sometimes that’s worth paying attention to because maybe you shouldn’t be comfortable with it either. There’s a reason why they don’t want to give you more money. Because usually a bank is a place that will only lend you money if you can prove you don’t really need it. You’re basically a very low risk and they’re very sure you’re going to pay them back.

So, they start getting skittish on that. That might be a little red flag. Like, “Hey, you’re probably fine, but you might want to think about shoring up your balance sheet a little bit or getting rid of some personal debt or something.” If they’re not comfortable, try to understand why and think honestly should you do this? Should the risk go down before you start doing more stuff?

Jaren: My next one is episode 64 with Kyle Marcotte. This guy is like 21, 22 years old. And he has like 170 units or something under management. And I just was very, very, very impressed with this guy. I actually wrote an entire blog article about his course. I went through his course and wrote a really great review of it because to be honest, it was the best course that I’ve taken on apartment syndication.

I don’t say that lightly. I’ve really put the time into a bunch of different courses. And it was just very straightforward to the point: This is the meat and potatoes of what you need to do to be successful. This is how it all works. And there weren’t any gaps. That’s the biggest takeaway. So many education products out there intentionally have gaps so that you pay for a higher price product like coaching or something like that.

But with his course, there were no gaps. It was just like, “Yeah, here’s literally everything that you need to be successful.” And just his personality, I thought he was like super down-to-earth and super chill. I was for a little bit a part of his Mastermind community and being as involved as I could there. He just attracts a bunch of really down-to-earth, no ego people. And like we said earlier, that’s really rare to find in real estate and especially in the apartment syndication space, because there’s so much money that’s involved and so many moving parts. It’s probably the most sophisticated form of real estate investing, arguably for sure. And he’s just super down-to-earth.

And the fact that he has accomplished so much at 22. Again, I think a lot of these are more on the inspirational track for me. That’s the impact that he had. I just realized, “Man, if he could do what he’s done at 22, what can I accomplish?” And I try not to beat myself up over it where I’m like, “Man, I’m such a bum. I’m about to be 30. What have I done with my life?” But yeah, his stuff is just really good content and I know he’s going to go really far. I think he’s probably going to end up being like a really influential person in real estate in the future, just because of how far he is at such an early age. But it’s also his personality. He’s just a bona fide good dude and it’s awesome.

Seth: He was also on my list, that episode. And I think the guy’s a genius. Just given his age. And for me it was kind of what you were saying, Jaren. It was a reminder to me that age is really just a number and it doesn’t need to hold you back from anything. And I know when I was 21 or 22 or really most of my twenties, I sort of had this frame of mind of “I’m the young guy. I’m the one who doesn’t know anything. Go ahead and look down on me. You can trample over me. That’s okay.” That was just sort of my mindset.

There are a few people that I know and he’s one of them where I would never look at his age and think, “Well, he must not be able to do it because he’s only 22.” It’s like no, this dude has proven himself to be highly intelligent and capable and even experienced. And he’s one of those people that I doubt anybody questions him about his age. I mean maybe when you look at him, he looks young. But aside from that, just talking to him, he knows just as much, if not way more than people who are in their 40s and 50s. He’s just a really smart guy.

Jaren: Yeah. It’s just really inspirational.

Seth: The next one on my list was episode 79 with Andrew Flanagan.

Jaren: That was on my list too. That was one of the ones we overlapped.

Seth: Yeah. And it’s funny because we’ve talked to several people who had a similar story to him where they were able to quit their job and go do their land business full-time and just the excitement behind that and the different deals they’ve done. And maybe it was his personality. Maybe it was the fact that he spent so much time worshiping me in that episode. I just really enjoyed the vibe from that. But I don’t know. I just really enjoyed talking to him and I liked hearing about his story. He was pretty much postcards and delinquent tax lists exclusively. At least at the time we talked to him.

That’s not a common thing. Usually, people will move on to blind offers or not use delinquent tax list. And he kind of like just like stuck to that approach and it really worked well for him. And it was cool to hear about that.

Jaren: Yeah. And that’s why he was on my list is because I hear so many people that say the delinquent tax list doesn’t work anymore and postcards don’t work. Something that I learned from just walking with you for the last couple of years is people like to jump to conclusions and put out definitive statements about stuff. But it’s not always definitive. What you can say is blind offers and delinquent taxes might not work in this county or this state, but he was a full-on case study. He quit his job and he’s doing land full time, doing something that other people say just doesn’t work anymore or is too difficult to get the list or whatever. I mean, if you’re in the right county, his direct mail costs are way cheaper than most people’s and it’s just awesome. I was really like, okay, yeah, case in point. He put the period at the end of the sentence. It’s not always black and white.

Seth: Yeah. My point isn’t to talk down about one way or the other. It’s just that there are many different ways to skin a cat and you can’t really make definitive statements about what does or doesn’t work all the time. And he was just a guy that took a path that’s not never traveled by, but less traveled by, I think, by the masses. And it’s worked really well for him. So, I really enjoyed talking to him. And he’s also been pretty good contributor in our Facebook group and on our forum and jumps in there and leaves good feedback for people and asks good questions. I just appreciated his involvement along with many of the other people that we’ve interviewed.

Jaren: The next one on my list is episode 48 with Will Mitchell. He’s the head of RE/MAX for both the country of Belize and the country of The Bahamas. And that was just a very eye-opening episode for me. It really kind of just got my wheels turning and it just really filled my dream tank. Because I realized I can buy really cool real estate properties in really cool tropical places around the world.

And now I don’t know at what point this would happen or if it will ever happen. But ever since that episode, I find myself dreaming about owning rental properties or some kind of investment properties that I can Airbnb in places like Belize. And I’ve never been, I probably will have to visit and verify that I actually want to buy a property there, but the fact that he set my mind at ease, there are nations out there that are developing nations that have a really solid judicial system and that the government is not corrupt to the point of no return.

But there are places that are tropical and beautiful and paradise on Earth that you can own property in and actually have legitimate property rights as a foreigner. So that was just a very eye-opening episode for me. And one that probably will end up in the future at some point, leading me to owning property in countries like Belize.

Seth: I really enjoyed that conversation too. And that was one that I didn’t think I would. I was kind of just like, “Well, this seems mildly interesting. It’s stuff outside the U.S. It’s unique, let’s give it a shot.” And I just walked away being like, “Wow, that was really cool.” And I can say I’m subscribed to Will Mitchell’s YouTube channel.

Jaren: Me too.

Seth: Dude, I don’t know of any other realtor out there that does as good a job as he does with YouTube. His videos are super interesting, kind of like blog style where he answers really good questions. Like legit questions that most people probably have if they’re not from Belize and they’re thinking about buying real estate there.

Check out his YouTube channel sometime. I’ll link to it in the show notes. He does a beautiful job of using that channel to inform people. And I wonder if that’s like his main marketing outlet, where he finds a lot of clients. Because I’ve followed a lot of the stuff that he puts on there. And it’s not that I like need to know about it, but it’s just interesting. Like it hooks me and draws me in.

The next one on my list is episode 66 with Nathan Amaral. So, Nathan’s deal is that he lives in Portugal and also lives in Uganda. I think, depending on if it’s the time of the year or what, but he’s done real estate investing in both countries and in the U.S. He just had a really interesting story. And I really like the guy personally. I feel like I get along really well with him every time we talk and get a lot of interesting insights.

I literally don’t know if anybody else who invest in either of those countries and just how in a lot of ways, they’re vastly different from the U.S. But in other ways, they’re like pretty similar. Kind of a different world and yet not at the same time.

Jaren: He was also kind of a leading contender. He was either 11 or 12. He was pretty close to making the top 10 for me. I just really liked how he just seemed like a really legitimate person. And I think that’s what stands out and the people that we chose is that all of them have been pretty down-to-earth and just real, authentic.

Seth: Yeah. What was your next one?

Jaren: My next one is episode 51 and 53 with Mike Wagner, a storage rebellion. I just was really impressed with the guy because I had spent a lot of time leading up to that interview, studying self-storage. And at some point, I actually had it as a goal to get into the self-storage space. And he was just the most, again, honest, down-to-earth, straightforward person in that space. And so, when anybody asks me now, if I were to get into self-storage, what influencer would I go look at or what education product would you go? I always point them into Mike’s direction because if I was really going to pursue self-storage, I would fork up the money to hire him as a coach. I watched him on Facebook and he’s always doing stuff with his coaching clients and partnering. He’s the real deal. And I just really loved how thorough he was and I really resonated with who he was as a person.

Seth: Yeah. Those are great conversations. Kind of like a part one and part two of a similar subject. And yeah, he seems like definitely a guy to pay attention to. I’m a part of a few different Facebook groups centered ground self-storage. And his one is by far the best one. People are very active on it. People are super helpful. A lot of people share what they’re doing, show pictures of their properties and what’s working for them. And it’s almost like the value of a paid coach in a Facebook group. Like you go post a question there, people will come and help you out.

Jaren: That’s awesome. If you’re interested in self-storage, I would definitely check him out.

Seth: Another one on my list was episode 69, that is called, “Do You Really Need to Be a Millionaire?” And I thought it was one of these episodes where it was just me and Jaren talking back and forth. And it was a chance for us to get a little bit deeper into this question of the “why” behind why we’re trying to make money. And just sort of explored some areas that don’t get talked about a whole lot.

A lot of us, myself included, when we get into this business, we’re just like, “Okay, I’ve got to make money. I got to do deals. I got to do this and that.” We’re not really thinking about “why.” Like really, really why. Get to the bottom of, “Why is this such an important thing? Where are we trying to go with it? What are we willing to sacrifice? What are we saying no to when we decided to get this business?” And we just covered some important stuff that I think is worth thinking about.

Jaren: Yeah, I really liked a lot of those topical kind of off-the-cuff conversation where you just pick a topic and we would just explore it. Yeah, I thought that was a really good episode as well.

The next one for me is one that is similar. It’s actually the very next episode. It’s episode 70, where we talked about the 10X Rule versus the 80/20 Principle. And I think that’s a very helpful episode. I feel like a lot of people should listen to that conversation because 10X is very popular. We discussed in length on that episode, if you put it in the right context, it can be a very helpful principle.

But if you just take 10X at face value, you can be massively wasteful with your resources and energy. And I think 80/20 is a much better approach to life. Because if you first find the 80/20 leverage points and then you 10X it, then you’re going to be in a really good spot.

I think that’s pretty much like Elon Musk’s life. That’s what he does. He’s very efficient, he finds leverage points and then works hundred hours per week. But if you just say, “I’m just going to work more and do more and 10X my effort and then it’s going to increase my results,” that’s not necessarily true. If I work out one hour a day and then I’m like, I really want to get in shape. So, I’m going to start working out 10 hours a day. That doesn’t work. You’re going to burn out and you don’t have 10 hours a day to work out.

So, I really think that, especially in the context of the real estate investing community, people really should understand where 10X makes sense. And ultimately, in my opinion, even though this is a bit presumptuous, I think 80/20 is more superior principle to live by. So, I thought that going through that and kind of like you said, really fleshing out the thoughts that I had in my head about the subject was really powerful.

Seth: Yeah. It kind of reminds me of the Dave Ramsey vs. Robert Kiyosaki thing, just because they’re both right but it’s not a black and white thing. You have to understand where each one makes sense. That’s just a human problem is that people want a simple answer to solve all their problems. Like, just do this and everything is fixed. But it’s just not that simple. You can’t just do 10X without like doing some damage in your life. You got to understand, “Okay, when does it make sense to do 10X? What do you have to do first?” Dear listener, if you’re listening to this and you have no idea what 10X or 80/20 means, we do explain both in much more context in that episode. That’s retipster.com/70.

The next one on my list was episode 76 called “Real Estate Ruined My Marriage.” And it didn’t actually ruin my marriage, but it’s trying to be provocative and get people to listen to it.

It was another just good conversation about prioritization and deciding what’s important here. What really matters? If my business fails, who’s really going to be there at the end of the day? Is it worth putting all my relationships on the line? It’s not just referring to your relationship with your spouse, but also family, friends, parents, all that stuff. So, there was a lot of good stuff in that one.

Jaren: Yeah, man, that was a really good episode. So, the next one for me is episode 98 with Luis. I just thought that he answered the question about how to build a business around assigning land better than any conversation that I’ve ever had on air, off air. Just in general. I just really appreciated how candid he was and how he shared, yeah, I felt really bad, but I had to fit to this person. And just really showcased what it is to have to assign and the pros and the cons fully honestly. I just really thought that he did a great job.

Again, he was also a very inspirational guy. He was trying to be a real estate agent in Los Angeles and was having to work as a waiter to make ends meet. He got a hold of land and then it was off to the races. And I think in like a year and a half or two years, he’s now full-time in land and doing really well.

His strategy is very appealing from a financial perspective because you don’t have to even bring in private money lenders or do any real splits. You just get a property tied up from a purchase agreement. And then within 60 days you go and find a buyer and all that stuff. So, it was just really good. I just felt like that episode was one of those where I was like, “Wow, this really concluded the conversation.” If anybody ever has a question about that, now I can point them back to that episode and say, “Hey, listen to this. This is all you need.” 

Seth: Yeah. I agree that there have actually been a few different like forum conversations and emails I’ve gotten where it’s like, “Yeah, listen to that episode, you’re gonna learn a ton.” You did a good job of laying out. And it’s not like he’s way is the ultimate way you have to do it. But he just had a good framework for deciding, “Okay, if the deal is in this price range, it goes assignment. If it’s in this price range, it goes double closing,” and just kind of breaking it down.

And also, one of my big takeaways and just more on the inspirational side was just his willingness to just hustle. Just pick up the phone, work hard. Don’t expect anything to get handed to you. I’ll chase stuff down.

I think that’s a good reminder because a lot of times it’s easy to sort of, I don’t know why, it’s easy to fall into this mentality of like, “If I just click this button and send this mail, money will somehow show up in my bank account.” It’s not that easy. It’s hard. There are lots of things you got to do and he just illustrated that really well.

The next one for me was episode 89 with Anton Ivanov who is a rental property investor and also runs DealCheck, which is a software that helps you analyze.

Jaren: Which is awesome, by the way.

Seth: Yeah. I think what stuck out to me about that episode. I had had a lot of email correspondence with him for years before we ever actually talked. But when we did talk, I just felt like he was dropping these wisdom bombs one after another, like just super helpful stuff. And on the whole software side of this DealCheck software that he built. So, I’ve known about that as well for a lot of years and I’ve used it from time to time. But I actually went back to it about two or three months ago now, because I was looking at a couple of possible commercial properties to buy and I’d never actually done that prior to a few months ago. And I was using DealCheck to put the numbers in there and it kind of blew me away how good the software is.

Most people have some kind of spreadsheet or something that they use for this kind of stuff. That’s what I had done for a long time as well. And that’s fine. But one of the cool things about it is that it can create these reports that you can then share with your lender or share with other investors. And the reports basically take what you put into it. It grabs a Google Street View shot of the property and what the cash-on-cash return is going to be, the cap rate. 

And you can also do this. It backs into the numbers. Say if you can put in certain requirements saying this property must have a cash-on-cash return of 10%. So, if that’s going to be true, what does my offer price need to be? And it’ll tell you, “Okay, well, if that’s what you want, this is what your offer price has to be”. Obviously assuming all that your inputs are right. That’s a huge issue obviously, but it’s a really well-done piece of software.

And it also comes as a mobile app as well. So, you store it in the cloud and you take it wherever you want to go. You can do it on the fly, just very well-executed. But even aside from that, just the conversation with him, I thought it was really solid.

Jaren: Yeah. He was actually on my list too. That was one of the ones that we overlapped. I just really appreciate how practical his advice was there. That it’s not going to be fun to save money and do the stuff that actually works. But it’s just kind of like everything else, like dieting and all that stuff. At the end of the day, you can try all these different methods and forms and so on and so forth and all that. But at some point, you’re just going to have to go through the pain of discipline in order to make something happen. And I think that he really exemplified that.

Seth: Yeah. That actually reminds me of something you said a few days ago, Jaren, when we were talking. You had mentioned something about when you think back on all your best memories in life, like the best things you ever did, or the things that make you happiest. When you remember back to what was actually happening during those times. And a lot of it is not really fun. It’s like kind of miserable.

I have that with some of the different family vacations I’ve been on with my kids where when I think about them, I think about them very, very fondly. Some of the happiest moments really that I’ve had are with them. But I know on those trips, there were many moments that were tense and I kind of wanted to go home. It was like, “This isn’t fun. This is not what vacation is all about.”

But it’s just kind of funny how somehow that melts away. I don’t think about that when I have those memories. It’s probably just a good reminder that there is nothing, at least on this earth, that is purely 100% perfect and fun and good. There’s always going to be that struggle.

Jaren: Or if it exists, it’s going to cost you a lot. I would bet that heroin and shooting up heroin gives you that sense of perfect feeling, but then it’ll destroy your absolute life. I got a friend that used to be a crack addict and how he described crack, when he would smoke it, it’s like for 30 seconds you feel the absolute best that you could ever possibly feel. Like you’ve reached the epiphany of euphoria. And it’s so good that you will do anything in your power to feel that way again. And that’s why it’s so addictive. So, it’s interesting. It’s like the things worth having have all this baggage and the things that don’t have baggage to some degree, you don’t really want it because it will come with a high cost.

Seth: Yeah. It’s like to experience life’s actual highs, organic, healthy highs, there’s a lot of work that goes into that. There’s a lot of groundwork. It doesn’t just happen. And it’s not just purely amazing. There’s some times some pain and misery mixed in with that.

Jaren: Yeah, man. A hundred percent. Well, the next one for me, I just have two more on my list is episode 47 with Pat Flynn.

Seth: Yeah, that was cool.

Jaren: And for me, the episode subject matter really wasn’t that great. It wasn’t like earth-shattering necessarily.

Seth: It was Pat Flynn.

Jaren: Yeah. It was just that I remember when I first started learning about content marketing, I was like 21 years old. And I remember I was scrolling through my phone and I found a funnel. And I didn’t even know what a funnel was at that point, but I found a funnel that led to Pat Flynn and all these other guys. It was like, “Wow. I want to do what he does.” I used to dream, legitimately daydream, about one day being on Pat Flynn’s podcast or interviewing him. And it happened. You know what I mean? It’s crazy that roughly a little bit less than 10 years later I got to sit on a podcast where it was just like, I have actualized a dream. Like this is real, this is tangible. And even though there was kind of a lackluster subject, it was just on a very personal level, like, “Whoa, this actually happened.”

Seth: I’m with you. Yeah. It’s not like it was the best episode or anything, but he is a very influential guy, at least in my life and your life too, and really cool to be able to talk to him and see that kind of thing come full circle.

Jaren: So, what about you?

Seth: That was all on my list.

Jaren: The last one for me then was episode 24 when I officially was invited and announced that I was joining the REtipster team. That was a very surreal and just awesome. You and me talk a lot about how we’ll just be working on something and it’ll just hit us like, “I can’t believe that I get to do this. This is like what I get paid to do. It’s just so awesome.”

Seth: Yeah. I get that most days. Sometimes it’ll just hit me for like a passing moment. Sometimes I’ll like dwell on it for longer than that, but man, it’s an amazing thing. Even if it doesn’t last forever, it’s awesome that a portion of my life, I get to spend doing this because it’s so much fun and I can’t think of anything else I’d rather do.

Jaren: Yeah. Me neither. I love creating content. I love what we get to do here. People talk to me because obviously I’ve talked to a lot of people who are either entrepreneurs or aspiring to be entrepreneurs that work for themselves. And a lot of people, they don’t normally come out point blank and say it, but they kind of hint at it. Like “Hey, would you ever want to like work for yourself? What’s it like working for Seth? Is it like really intense?”

And I definitely feel like you have a very healthy and strong standard on quality of content. But one of the biggest perks I feel like of working with you is that I have full autonomy over my schedule. And that’s one of the distinguishing factors between a soul sucking job that people are trying to get out of and then working for yourself is that autonomy.

And I feel like I already have it. I feel like I’m in more of those. Dave Ramsey has a book called “EntreLeadership” where he talks about how there’s like entrepreneurial type people that work for companies. And I feel like I’m very much in that space where I’m kind of entrepreneurial, but I have a tendency to at least so far in my life do the most damage working with somebody or collaborating with somebody. So, I just really love being here. And a lot of people kind of scratch their heads sometimes. They’re like “What?” But it’s like, “Nah, why would I go anywhere else?”

Seth: Yeah. That’s actually sounds like a really accurate description of what you just said about Dave Ramsey. And I think part of that is not everybody can be trusted. There’s a lot of people who need to be managed and they need to have somebody standing over their shoulder directing every move they make. And it’s fairly unique thing to find somebody where it’s like, you just let them go and something good is going to happen because their heart is in the right place and they have enough experience and knowledge and understand how to convey that. All those ingredients usually aren’t always there and requires a lot of oversight or they some oversight. But I feel like, it works well with you because you’ve got that self-drive and there’s no need to crack a whip because you’re going to do it yourself. And it’s a really admirable quality.

Jaren: Yeah. Thanks man. I appreciate that.

Seth: Is that all of them then? 

Jaren: I think so. And looking back on going through all this, we’ve had some really incredible opportunity to talk to some just cool people.

Seth: Yeah. It’s been really cool. And then looking back, I was just scrolling through all the different episodes we’ve done and just remembering all those people and all the things we talked about. I’m surprised how much I remember, because there’s so much stuff that was covered in all those conversations, but it’s all still pretty clear in my brain.

Yeah. It’s been a lot of fun and look forward doing a lot more of this. And in terms of the future direction of where it’s going, I don’t really know. I guess I haven’t thought that. I don’t have this specific roadmap on, “We’ll do this on this date and this will happen.” It’s more just like, “It’s going well. We’ll keep doing it and keep finding people.” 

And I think one of the challenges is there’s no shortage of people out there who wants to come on this podcast and talk and that kind of thing. But we sort of have to know them or have a really good reason to think they’re going to have something good to say. We don’t just say, “Yeah. Okay. You want to come on? Let’s do it.” We’ve never done that. It’s always been like, “Okay, well, let me think. Do I know you? What can you show me that you’ve done? Why is this going to be really helpful to people?”

So, there’s lots of people who would be happy to do it. But when we talk about quality people that we know are going to have some good things to say, that’s sort of a different game. And there’s certainly still plenty of those people as well but it takes a bit of vetting and just knowing what’s going on and landscape and who’s doing what. I was enjoying the ones that just you and I do. I feel like those always come out pretty well too, but that also requires a bit of on my end anyway, I have to think through a lot of, “Okay, what do I have to say about this before we even hit record?”

So, for the listeners out there, if there’s an episode that you would love in particular and you want more of that, by all means, feel free to… I guess we don’t have comments on the blog anymore. I guess you could email us or something or say something on Facebook, whatever. Wherever you see this, leave a comment there. We’re always open to that too. We want to do what you guys are finding helpful and fun to listen to.

Jaren: Well, to wrap this up, do we want to do one of our topic cards? I always enjoy doing those.

Seth: Yeah, I do too. So, how about this? This question is what’s something that you’ve never been able to do well?

Jaren: Oh man. I need some time to think about that.

Seth: There’s not much to choose from because I’m so good at everything I try.

Jaren: It’s not like that. It’s just, there’s so many.

Seth: I also have many, but there’s something that I don’t even know why, but it’s popping right into my head when I saw that question. So, for me, writing music. It seems like kind of a random thing, but I’ve played the guitar for a long time. I’ve been really into lots of different music for most of my life. I’m a big fan of music, but for whatever reason I can never, my brain just doesn’t work that way. When I think of a chord progression or what would sound good together. Like I just can’t do it.

And it’s always really frustrating to me because I can write other stuff, words, stories, or blog posts or whatever. But when it comes to music, there’s this mental disability where I cannot do it. And it’s one of those things where if I could, that would be so much fun to compose music and come up with things that go together and sound amazing but I just can’t. I’ve tried and tried and tried and just it doesn’t work. It’s kind of sad to me, but whatever, God just didn’t give me that gift, I guess.

Jaren: Yeah. I think for me, it’s probably math. Lately, I’ve been putting in writing in that camp too, because I’ve been struggling a bit with the writing lately. But I think that if we look at my entire life, I’ve always performed the least mathematically probably from like an academic standpoint. I think the reason why is my brain needs to know the purpose behind why things work. And at least in my education going through high school and stuff, the teacher didn’t really have time to teach the philosophy behind certain formulas. I think I would probably do better in a math theory class. If there was ever such a thing, that would probably really help me embrace math better. 

But for the longest time, because I couldn’t apply mathematics to anything practical, I was just like, “This is so dumb. I’m not going to put my attention here.” And so, now I’m very dependent on a calculator. I’m very dependent on, “What is this formula again?” If Google didn’t exist, I would be hurt pretty bad.

Seth: That makes me wonder. Do you generally need reasons for most of the stuff you do? Do you need to understand why it’s important?

Jaren: Yeah, a hundred percent. If I don’t, then I really struggle. Again, I don’t know exactly why, but that’s just how I’m wired. Like understanding the theory behind or the philosophy or the overarching principle as to why I’m doing it, then I can connect it to reality and then it clicks in my brain. And maybe that’s some of the reason behind writing that I’ve been struggling with a little bit. It’s really understanding like, “Okay, why does grammar matter?” When I talk this way, people understand me. So why can’t I just write it that way?

Seth: Yeah. Math has always been a hard thing for me too. Beyond just the four basic functions of math. I can’t do it, man. I did horrible in high school level math and getting through college level math was literally a miracle. Like it was an act of God that I got through that. And we’re talking like the most basic math class I could find in college. That was an act of God for me to get through that. So yeah, I’m with you. I don’t know if my struggle is because I don’t understand the reason as much as literally my brain can’t put it together. Like it doesn’t get it.

I know when I was getting through accounting, luckily that doesn’t rely on anything like super complex, but there’s still a lot of reasoning and assumptions that you have to understand to make that all make sense as well.

The times when I was able to make sense of it, it was when I was able to visualize the numbers in my head. Almost like, “Okay, so I take 20 beans out of this cup and put it in this cup instead. This liability is now an asset or whatever.” But being able to see it in my head, that was when it made sense. So maybe it’s because I’m like a visual learner.

Jaren: What’s really interesting is that both of you and me feel like we’re not very good at math, but we’re both in real estate and teach people how to do math all day long.

Seth: But again, it’s all the basic stuff and that’s a very different animal than trigonometry or calculus.

Jaren: Or statistics.

Seth: Yeah. Cool, man. That was a fun conversation. I’m looking forward to a hundred more episodes. And if you guys want to see links to all these conversations, again, retipster.com/100. If you’re listening to this on your phone, you can go ahead and text the word “FREE” to the number 33777. You can stay up to date on the next 100 episodes we have coming up.

So, thanks again, everybody for sticking with us. Whether you’ve been through us for all hundred episodes or if this is your first one, I appreciate you giving us your time and your ears and your attention. We shall the best in your business and in your life. Talk to you next time.

About the author

Seth Williams is the Founder of REtipster.com - an online community that offers real-world guidance for real estate investors.

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