I was living in San Bernardino, and didn't know anything about investment. I have been wanting to get my license, but haven't have a chance. When I refinanced my house in 2002, for some weird reason I decided to use some of that money to buy a piece of land (I guess to some day build my dream home) this piece of land had been in the market for long time and fell out of scrow three times, because it was five acres, but the city wanted $73,000 to bring the water to the property, so this was discouraging a lot of people, I decided to take it and the agent made me sign something to make sure that I was aware of the water cost.
I thought that eventually we would have a way to get the water for less money, and I took it for $35,000 close to Main St. and Escondido, 15,000 down and owner carried 20,000. I started looking into options and it was getting very difficult to do anything, I wanted to build track homes, but for someone that is not in the business this was dream hard to become true(that's what I thought then) after a year I was in a difficult financial situation and had to sell it (even that by then I knew in two o three more months tha land was going to have a creazy value) but I can't complaint sold it for $150,000, so I thought it was a VERY NICE PROFIT, after paying the balance on the land, taxes and capital gains, I had $111,000 free.
I was able to buy a small house across from my house for 100,000 a year later the house already have a value of at least $210,000. Bought another one for $163,000 and three months later appraised for 207,000. All this is happening without me being an investor, now I am looking specifically to invest and I can't find any good deals, I am going to start attending the Investor's club meetings to learn and I have two or three courses already to get more familiar with how to do it.