When I first started investing in 1979, I had a job as an assistant hospital administrator in Pittsburgh that ended with my essentially being fired. In the early 80's the prospect of losing my job and starving to death concerned me. In general, I was a fearful person -THEN. As previously noted, I had determined in 1979 never to count on a job for financial independence.
Fear Not – Confidence Comforted Me
The wisdom of this decision was reinforced in late 1987 when I had to resign from my city of Chicago position. One of the requirements of that job was that I actually reside within the city boundaries. When I applied for the job I was a city resident, but I moved to the suburbs after I had been hired. Someone tipped off the Office of Municipal Investigations, and they spent a year following me.
I was less despondent this time than I had been when previous jobs had terminated. The success of the first few buildings helped raise my self-confidence, and I no longer dreaded the future.
Deciding to Become An Full-Time Investor
My wife had often told me that things always work out for the best. The equity gain in less than three years on the second building that I purchased (about $160,000) more than doubled the amount of money I would have made had I stayed in my job at the Chicago Hospital Council, not even counting tax and Social Security withholdings.
Of course, in fairness, real estate equity does not put bread on the table – only cash flow does that. In any case, I did not attempt to look for another job. I would never again work as an employee. My situation was helped by my wife’s having a good job with health benefits. And I did some consulting work for about a year after I left my job with the city.
Most importantly, I continued to pursue real estate acquisitions. The source of my funding was the equity in the four-unit building and the six-unit building in Chicago. While I was doing consulting, I identified two more properties with potential.
There will come a time when you will decide whether by choice or force of hand to become a full-time real estate investor. Embrace it.
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