Rich on Money

Financial Freedom in the Military through Real Estate

Should You Go to the Military Influencer Conference Next Year?

For the past two years, I’ve attended FINCON.  It’s a conference with about 2000+ attendees geared at financial media.  I’m an active duty airmen who has a small real estate blog, so Curtez Riggs suggested I attend the first Military Influencer Conference taking place at the same location as FINCON a few days before it begins.

Two for one!

It was hard to know how this new conference would turn out, being in it’s first year and all.  Lots of things were up in the air.

  • Would it have enough attendees?
  • Would it attract big enough talent? (speakers)
  • Big enough money? (sponsors)
  • Networking opportunities?
  • Well organized?

I’m happy to report, Hell yes on all fronts!!!

The conference was a massive success and everyone that attended had glowing reviews. Everything was amazing.   Here are some of the things that stuck out to me:

It started off with a keynote by Emily Cavness, CEO of Sword & Plough.  She came up with an idea for making bags and other things out of military surplus items just as she was coming into the army.  It’s became a massively successful business and her insights and story was amazing!

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Investor Profile of Rich on Money

Chad Carson of www.coachcarson.com did a profile piece of me on his website.

Chad has become a friend, and he is one of the best real estate bloggers out there.  He’s got something like 90 properties in a small college town.  He has reached financial independence, and is currently living in Ecuador with his wife and kids.

Read his piece on me at his website.

My Secret Weapon for Real Estate

I’m in D.C. for some leadership training.  I’m glad my organization gives us two weeks to focus on leadership before we take on a supervisory job.  It’s a great time for personal reflection.

In this training, we do stuff like take personality tests, find out what our leadership style is, and discuss how to deal with common personnel challenges.

We also examine what our values are.

I was surprised how different my core values were from many of my military peers.  The typical military member has values that center around the following things:

  • Honor
  • Loyalty
  • Duty
  • Integrity
  • Trust
  • Teamwork

All the things above are clearly important, but they weren’t values that drove me.  They don’t define who I am.

Our deepest values often manifest themselves during significant events in our lives.  I mapped out the significant events in my life and was surprised at what trait stood out.

I believe the trait that is most important to me has been key to my successes in life.

It’s clearly been the key to my success in real estate.

Let me share two significant events with you.

YOU’LL NEVER RUN AGAIN

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Seven Steps to Being a Military Millionaire

It is possible to retire from the military a millionaire.  I know a few people who have done it.

I hit the mark before retirement.  No rich parents, no help, wife didn’t work.

Can the average military member go from being in debt to military millionaire?

We all see websites and books from people who were deep in debt and somehow quickly made millions.

Maybe we should read their books or infomercials and try their methods…

I believe it is hard to duplicate their success.

These gurus get rich off people looking for shortcuts.  Most that try the guru route fail miserably.

It often involves going into lots of debt or paying a lot upfront for a product or a course.

It also requires no common sense

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Debt Pitfalls for Military Members

The military has some unique debt traps that are easy to fall into.

Buying New Cars

One is this whole military car sales thing.

“Let me go talk to my manager!”

You’ve seen them lurking around the BX preying on new enlistees just getting started out in life.

They try to sell you a new car when you are overseas.  They’ll tell you it’s an amazing deal because you are in the military.  They sometimes try to sell it as a military benefit.

It is simply not true. A military benefit is when the US government subsidizes the cost.

Here are examples of actual military benefits:

  • Commissary
  • BX
  • Medical and dental care
  • Space-A Travel
  • Tax-free housing
  • Montgomery GI bill

Here’s an example of what is not a military benefit:

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Real Estate Investing from a Distance

I’ve done it again!

Trying to expand my readership, I’ve asked another friend from the blogger world to let me post on their site.   Mr. 1500 from www.1500days.com is someone I first met at FINCON.  We crossed paths again at Chautauqua attending on separate weeks.  Super-cool guy with a great website.

This post, I give some tips on how to invest in real estate from afar:

Hey.

My name is Rich.

I love real estate.

I grew up in Southern California.  I remember thinking about buying real estate as a kid.  I was twelve years old.  I thought if I could buy a house then, I would be able to sell it when I was eighteen and have enough money for a car!  I was always fascinated by how fast real estate appreciated in certain places, especially near the beach.

Real estate is tricky for me.  I’m in the military, which means I move every two to three years.  Ten of the last sixteen years I’ve been overseas, including currently.

What kind of real estate investor moves every two to three years? 

That will never work!

I’ve found a way to make it work for me.  Over the past three years, I’ve purchased several buy-and-hold rental properties with cash.  The income they provide has made me financially independent.  Most of these purchases have been made from overseas.

Maybe some of my methods could be useful to you.  I’ll summarize my advice in three main points:

Click here to read more…

3 Steps to Retire Early on a Military Salary

This week I did a guest post on one of the most popular military financial independence websites.  This website (www.the-military-guide.com) was started by Doug Nordman.  He retired from the Navy in 2002 and hasn’t worked since.  He currently lives in Hawaii and surfs often when he’s not traveling the world.

Not a bad life.

What he did is what I’m writing about.  Working 20 years (or less), and then retiring, never needing to work again!

Here we go…

BLUF: In college I paid off $32k in student loans in a year. On a military salary I paid off a $280k mortgage in seven years. I’ve bought several rental properties with cash. I did this through paying off debt, having a high savings rate, and investing well.

My name is Rich. I’m an Air Force Lt Col of 16 years. I’m married with 2 young kids.

 

Here is my message:

Don’t work until you’re 65. Not even 55. You can save enough money to retire in 20 years or less. I mean after 20 years of work, NEVER WORK AGAIN (unless you want to). This method doesn’t depend on a military retirement, that’s just a bonus!

I currently make enough money from my investments to live on. I could quit working today, but I’m less than four years from a generous military retirement.

Continue reading…

What should I teach my kids about money?

I love all things money.  My kids often see me reading finance books and browsing real estate blogs.  They hear me talking about money with my wife.  They watch us negotiate deals to buy houses with cash, and they overhear our discussions on retiring early.

I explain what I’m doing with money in simple terms to my kids, but I can’t be sure it’s sinking in.  They are 10 and 6.  It is my job to prepare them to navigate money and life.  I wonder how I’m doing.

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What the Hell is Chautauqua?

In October 2016, I returned from a week in Ecuador. It was a life-changing experience.

          Why would a military guy who lives in Germany fly all the way to Ecuador for a week?

Why of course, to attend a financial independence/retire early (FIRE) retreat hosted by three prominent bloggers!

Jim Collins, father of the world-famous Stock Series, organized this amazing event. There were three different weeks of Chautauquas this year, each hosted by a slightly different cast of famous bloggers.

Chautauquas having been going on for several years now, and seem to be gaining in popularity. These things sell out faster than a Taylor Swift concert!!

On the week I went, it was Jim Collins himself, Paula Pant, and the notorious Mr. Money Mustache.

Kind of awesome for me, as these are the three bloggers I admire most.

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How I Achieved a PERFECT Credit Score!

I’m in the military. People around the office ask me for for financial advice. They know I’m a “money guy” and word gets around that I like talking investing and real estate.

I warn people they won’t like my advice. They usually don’t.

This guy didn’t.

Recently a co-worker told me he’s got $20,000 burning a hole in his pocket, and what I think about investing in the British Pound. With the Brexit, it seems like a sure thing!

I told him this kind of speculation in currency isn’t for everyone. Even those who devote their lives to studying this are wrong more often then right. I warned him this would be a fun way to lose money quickly on something he doesn’t understand. It seemed like he took that to heart.

Guy: “Ok, I got a better idea! What about gold!?!?!?”

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