Episode 98: Creating Time and Money Freedom with Sam Wilson – Transcript

Episode 98: Creating Time and Money Freedom with Sam Wilson

Rennie Gabriel  00:10
Hi, folks, Welcome to Episode 98 of the Wealth On Any Income Podcast. This is where we talk about money tips, techniques, attitudes, information, and provide inspiration around your business and your money. I'm your host, Rennie Gabriel. In past episodes, we spoke about how to understand the numbers from your business, how to measure the level of pleasure based on where you spend your money, how to track your money in 5 - 10 seconds, and what determines how close you are to Complete Financial Choice®, and how to run your business without being in your business. Last week, we had Janet Fish, a Real Estate Investor and Business Coach. And today we have as our guest, Sam Wilson. Sam is an active investor in real estate in RV parks, RV and boat storage with experience in multifamily, self-storage, parking, and land. And he hosts the daily How to Scale Commercial Real Estate Podcast and participated in - now correct me if this is incorrect - in over $30 million in acquisitions in 2021. Is that right - Sam?

Sam Wilson  01:25
That is correct. 

Rennie Gabriel  01:26
Okay. And Sam holds a bachelor's degree in business finance from the University of Memphis and holds his real estate license in Tennessee. In addition to his years and real estate experience, he also has a diverse background in business ownership, building construction, and management. Sam, welcome to the Wealth On Any Income Podcast.

Sam Wilson  01:49
Rennie, thank you for having me. Certainly appreciate it.

Rennie Gabriel  01:52
Great. Well, let's get right to it with some questions. Okay, we've got an idea of what you do, but how about telling me why you do it?

Sam Wilson  02:02
Yeah, I mean, that's a great question. One I grew up poor, Rennie, I mean, that's the reality of it. I grew up poor and when you grow up poor, you learn to be scrappy, right? It's just, it's something that as hard as I try, it doesn't matter how much money I have, there's always that feeling of like, 'Oh, no, what if we run out?' Right? And so there's that inherent need to just... and I'm working on that, that's a self improvement area, where it's like, 'I have enough breathe, I'm good.' But you know, that's why do I do what I do? I guess because, you know, it's part of just being raised the way we were raised, we work hard, and you just keep working hard. And that's part of it. But my ultimate goal, I guess, is -  in this. Is not just to work hard, but it's to develop time and financial freedom for me and my family. I mean, that's the reality of it. I went on a bike ride today, in the middle of the day, I don't normally do that. But I was just like, it's a beautiful day, you know, maybe some other things weren't going as well as they should have here in the office. And I'm like, 'Bag it, I'm getting on my bike. And I'm leaving'. That's time and money freedom when on a Wednesday, I can go on a bike ride for two hours and come back all sweaty. But gosh, that was very relieving. So yeah, that's why I do what I do - so I can do stuff like that and live my life the way that it works for me.

Rennie Gabriel  03:21
And real estate does that it does that for you, it does that for me, and it does that for other people who recognize you don't have to work for a living, 

Sam Wilson  03:31

Rennie Gabriel  03:32
You can have choice in your life.

Sam Wilson  03:34
That's right. 

Rennie Gabriel  03:35
So let's talk about one of the most important things I try and lead by example, I donate 100% of the profits from my online work to charity, tell me is there a particular charity or cause that you support? And if so what do they do?

Sam Wilson  03:49
You know, that's a good question, two fronts on that. One, in the neighborhood where I grew up. So on the we're getting to the weeds here, but on the general partnership side of our business, so we raise money from private investors and there's limited partners and general partners. And so the general partnership side, we partner with an organization in Indianapolis, the neighborhood I grew up in is run by my brother and sister in-law, very successful in business but also a big heart for their neighborhood. It's very low-income area, lots of crime, lots of just need, there in that area. And so they run a youth ministry there they have a big giant camp right in the middle of the neighborhood. They've got, you know, everything for kids. So it's really great to take part of our proceeds from the general partnership side - from the acquisition fees we generate, from income we generate and donate that to Straight Up. So that is one thing I do, which is really great. Because it's like, 'Oh, I actually know the people running that it's my own brother'. And then secondly, I have a big heart for - I come from a humongous family, which is probably half the reason why we grew up poor because I had so many brothers and sisters. But...

Rennie Gabriel  04:52
How many? -  I was busy laughing -  how many?

Sam Wilson  04:55
I've got five siblings. 

Rennie Gabriel  04:56
Okay, yeah.

Sam Wilson  04:57
I mean, it's not a huge family, but it's it's big enough, you know, there...

Rennie Gabriel  05:00
Oh, yeah. Big enough to be concerned about grocery bills.

Sam Wilson  05:03
Correct. Correct. And five of those were boys. So it, you know, so we like to eat a lot. So that said, I have a big heart for families. And with that, you know, the need in the foster and adoption community, it's really sad to see kids get split up. It happens all the time. You know, there's rare occasions where there's an open home, if kids go into foster care that they can find a placement for three kids to go in the same home, it just doesn't happen. It's like, okay, we got three openings for one kid each home. And then the siblings grew up without knowing each other. My wife and I couldn't have kids. It's a long ten year story and heartbreak there, but spent spent a lot of time trying to figure that out, which never did, obviously. And then we said, 'Well, hey, why don't we foster instead?' And so February 1 of 2021. Heck we got a call and next thing we know, 30 minutes later, we're a two to five-person family. You know, we added three kids in the mix, and it's been a wild ride. And they are still with us, and probably will be for the duration. 

Rennie Gabriel  06:04
How old are they? 

Sam Wilson  06:06
When they came? They were five, three and eight months? 

Rennie Gabriel  06:10

Sam Wilson  06:11
Yeah. So instant family, man. 

Rennie Gabriel  06:14
Yeah, bless you. Let's see, Sam, that is just so cool. And that's really what I want to say -  that's being philanthropic, completely, because it's not just about money. It's about giving up your time. And so that's fabulous.

Sam Wilson  06:33
I still don't sleep. I mean, in the last seven days, I've been woken up as early as one o'clock in the morning. I mean, you bring in kids from a you would think it's all hunky dory from that point out, but it's not. These are children from a severe trauma and abuse background. And there's just, there's a cleanup on aisle five every day, emotionally, just like 'Oh, Lord, what am I doing? I don't have the skill set for this'

Rennie Gabriel  06:57
Yeah, well, you're learning it. You're learning that skill set.

Sam Wilson  07:00
That's exactly right. 

Rennie Gabriel  07:02
Well, let's get back to business now. And let's talk about who your target. People are. Who do you target to be clients, investors or whatever?

Sam Wilson  07:13
Yeah, that's a good question and maybe something I haven't dialed in as tightly as I can. I mean, lots of different walks of life invest with us. Everywhere from people that don't know that much about real estate, people that want to experience what it's like to have hands off investments. Everyone from my own mother is an investor in our company, and she's so elated with it going 'Oh, my gosh, how did I?'. Again, you know, she's a prodigious saver, but not an investor. 

Rennie Gabriel  07:37

Sam Wilson  07:37
So you know, somebody just doesn't understand it, but understands what what it means to get an ACH in her account every quarter and go, 'Oh, cool. That's fun. Thank you.' So you know, have those people that come on board with me, certainly have some more sophisticated, and, you know, some very sophisticated investors that are again, producing revenue from other business or other income streams, but they have excess capital and want to deploy it, and they say, 'okay'. And then you know, so those investors come in, I also have groups of people who are retirees, or people that are going, 'Gosh, like, I don't want to be 80, and then watch my savings go to nothing, just because the stock market took a dump. And the next thing I know, I'm trying to figure out how to pay the bills again.' So they want to diversify out of the stock market and get something that produces a consistent income stream, you know, lots of different profiles invest with us. Yeah, a lot of different profiles and there's not one target. 

Rennie Gabriel  08:30
And are you acquiring property all over the US? Or primarily the South? Or, I mean, where are you? Where are you in making your investments 

Rennie Gabriel  08:40
Primarily in the southeast? So again, that's, I mean, that's everybody's kind of breadbasket right now is the southeast for real estate investing. It is, you know, the temperature, especially for RV resorts, being able to not worry as much about freeze, not worrying as much about having to shut down seasonally, you know, having more favorable just landlord tenant laws, not that those apply to us that much, because...

Rennie Gabriel  09:06
Well, they certainly apply in California, believe me,

Sam Wilson  09:09
Maybe they do and again, that's not where I'm... we don't look there. 

Rennie Gabriel  09:14
Yeah I know, I the reason I bring it up is and I don't mind saying this, because anyone who owns property in California knows it is pro-tenant and anti-landlord.

Sam Wilson  09:26
Right, right. And that's one of the reasons we just don't I mean, we just never look out there. And also it's outside of the range where typically prices make sense. I was talking to an RV park management company yesterday about this, it was like, 'Hey, you know, where is the range of where we can get the most return?' And we had kind of - I had narrowed my own band in and I said look, 'This is this is where the lowest hanging fruit seems to be in this dollar range'. And they confirm my suspicion like 'Yeah, that's pretty accurate.' So again, once you get into markets like California, I would love to be in the Mountain West just because that's where my... I kind of love the Mountain West. And it's like a kind of got own personal affection for it. But again, your return profiles get skewed to the downside to the point where it's like, doesn't make sense. So we are mostly in the in the Southeast.

Rennie Gabriel  10:13
Okay, so this is kind of a little off-base question, but tell me about what your biggest failure was, whether it was personal or business. And then what did you learn from it?

Sam Wilson  10:24
Yeah, I mean, I've never lost investors money - I've certainly lost plenty of my own. And I'm not even sure that would be my biggest failure. When you say failure...

Rennie Gabriel  10:33
Well, when we spoke earlier, you said something about a flooring company.

Sam Wilson  10:39
And that's exactly what the story is going to tell you. So I wouldn't chalk that up as a failure because I use that as a springboard for when the pandemic happened. Like, I was like, 'Hey, wait, I've been here before. I'm not going to be the same idiot I was a decade ago'. You know, that's the beauty of of life lessons is that you get chances to repeat them. You know, if you don't learn them the first time life will find a way to teach you again. Yeah, and so when I smelled round two. I was like, 'I'm going to do this differently. I sold a flooring company in 2012, it was a family business I bought out the portion of the company and I was 25, ran it till I was 30, knew it was time to move on sold that so I had a pocket full of money and time on my hands. Which is a confluence of events that few people I think get to experience in life when suddenly you're like, 'Oh, cool, my needs are met and I have time.' I should have just reveled in it for like a year and had a great - just taken a year off and had a good time. But coming again, you know, circling - going full circle to the story from the beginning of our conversation growing up poor. There's always that  just like, 'Oh, no. Like, now what now? Where's my next meal gonna come from? Where's my next...' Again, I never, you know, we were fortunate in that we were always fed, but certainly knew what it was to look around and know that everybody else had a whole lot more. So that said, you know, I panicked, I panicked, and I floundered. And I started investing in this and investing in that and trying all these different things. And I just, I mean, I did not perform well, in that period, and I burned a lot of money and I burned a lot of time and energy, just mistaking activity for progress. And I think that was one of the lessons was like - just hit pause. When the pandemic happened we were investing in parking lots and kind of a similar situation happened. We had just divested of our assets in January of 2020. Parking got crushed, crushed in the pandemic. I mean, who was going to ballgames, who was going to night and weekend nights out? Who was going to...

Rennie Gabriel  12:35

Sam Wilson  12:35
Even the gold mine lots it's going to sound very, very opportunistic. But the goldmine parking lots are the jailhouse lots, because they turn over like three, four times a day, right? So you own a parking lot next to a jailhouse, somebody is going in for visitation they pay 8 bucks to park, they're back out in an hour. And they'll just... it's churn. The churn is how you make your money in parking. Yeah, even those went to zero. Because no... it's all happening over zoom. So here I was in March of 2020, with a pocket full of money and time on my hands. And our business just got hammered. And I go, 'Hang on, wait, I don't own any parking, I have money, and I have time. I am not going to freak out.' I didn't. I didn't do another real estate. Actually, that's a lie. I bought one house in October of 2020, because was my next door neighbor's house and he was giving it away and I was like, 'Sure'. But otherwise, I didn't do any real estate in 2020. I just hit pause and said, 'We're good. We're good.' My wife and I took some amazing vacations. We owned an RV and we just traveled the country. And I, you know, by and large, it treated me fairly well. And it also gave me a chance to recalibrate and go, 'Gosh, what can I .. What are the sensible steps I can take next?' And do it in a meaningful, methodical way versus you know, the frenetic panic that I kind of went into in what would have been the end of 2012. 

Rennie Gabriel  13:55
Yeah, exactly. So yeah, that experience 10 years earlier, made a difference later.

Sam Wilson  14:00
Huge, huge difference. So yes, that I would not - it was a failure of mine in 2012. But  I certainly turned it into a learning lesson and, you know, applied there 10 years later.

Rennie Gabriel  14:12
Okay, another couple questions. Tell me if there is a goal objective and outcome that are achieved by the people who work with you - who follow your advice? And do you have an example of a case study as a story to illustrate that?

Sam Wilson  14:30
I would say I had an investor come to me that had made over a 14-year period, their financial advisor had made them six tenths of a percent.

Rennie Gabriel  14:40
Wait a second, so that's 60% of 1%. 

Sam Wilson  14:45

Rennie Gabriel  14:46
Uh huh. Oh, yeah. This, my wife and I had someone like that years ago. Okay and that was while the market was growing, go ahead.

Sam Wilson  14:53
When the markets going gangbusters, they had effectively cleared a 60 basis point gain on an annual basis, over 14 years, and I just said, 'What in the world?' So, you know, got a hold of that. And within, you know, gosh, three years, we've doubled their portfolio. And then, you know, that, of course, their advisors were all hunky dory when I got the phone with them and what you know, 'Mr. Wilson, I understand you're working with so and so what can we do to how can we help you, Mr. Wilson?' I was like "You can, you can take this investor's money and you can mail it to the next custodian where they're going to deploy this in a meaningful manner and get a return on their on their money. That's what they're going to do. So, you know, I still just laugh at that conversation. 

Rennie Gabriel  15:37
Yeah, yeah. It's sort of like, tell you what, how you can help - you can liquidate the entire account so that they can now earn some money on it. Yeah.

Sam Wilson  15:44
Right. Right. Yeah and I think that's the fun stuff for me. I'm making a difference, you know, because it is a difference. It's a meaningful difference that 

Rennie Gabriel  15:53
Oh, yeah. 

Sam Wilson  15:54
I mean, that is not you know, they were just plugging along like, 'Well, you know, we're just doing what they're saying.' Like, 'No, no, you're getting like we're not losing money. Yes, you are losing money.'

Rennie Gabriel  16:03
Oh, absolutely. With inflation, that money's worth less than when they started.

Sam Wilson  16:08
Well, far less. And so anyway, I think that that's a fun, those are fun wins when you get to hand that back to people and just have them go. 'Oh, thank you. I get it now. I now understand'. So yeah, that for me is personally very rewarding.

Rennie Gabriel  16:23
Fabulous. Well, okay. Let me ask you this. Is there a valuable resource that you could provide to people or how they can get a hold of you to find out more?

Sam Wilson  16:33
Two things I would suggest. One is I would join the Bricken Investor Club, which is brickeninvestmentgroup.com/join that's the link for that and you can join our Bricken Investor Club, you get notified of all of our opportunities here, our weekly newsletter. I always put something out, you know, that relates to the market or relates to what we're looking at kind of just, it's a market synopsis. So that's one thing. And the second thing I would do is that I have a checklist, you know, it's a checklist you can use for any deal. I'm personally...I'm diversified, not just in my own assets, but I also am a passive investor in a lot of other assets around the country with other sponsors just like myself. With that, you know, I've developed a guide that will help you kind of narrow down your criteria. I know, early on when I was looking to be a passive investor, there were a lot of things, one I didn't know and I also didn't know what I wanted. I built this checklist so you won't spend hours looking at deals wondering should I be involved? Should I not be involved? Do I like this? Do I like that? In 10 minutes or less, you can run through it use the checklist as a guide and say, 'Oh, okay, cool. Now I know whether or not I want to proceed forward, or at least, or throw it in the round bin'. So that is at brickeninvestmentgroup.com/checklist.

Rennie Gabriel  17:40
Beautiful. I'm going to make sure that those are both in the show notes, so people can just click on it and end up right there. I guess the last thing would be last question would be. Is there a question I should have asked you that would also give some great value to the people who are listening?

Sam Wilson  17:57
Rennie, I can't think of any - this has been a great time. Gosh, last question - what would you ask me? Yeah, I don't know. 

Sam Wilson  18:06
Get on the phone with me. Happy to chat, anytime with anyone, talk about investments. People run ideas by me- whatever investment you know, they're getting into. Happy to be a resource not just on my own deals, but on other stuff you're looking at as well. certainly happy to provide feedback on what I see. 

Rennie Gabriel  18:06

Rennie Gabriel  18:22
Terrific. Thank you, Sam and also thank you for having me on your podcast.

Sam Wilson  18:27
It was certainly enjoyable. Thank you for coming on.

Rennie Gabriel  18:29
Thank you. Well, and to my listeners. Thank you for tuning in. Next week, we'll have podcaster Mike Michalowicz, who is the author of seven books, including Profit First, How to Transform your Business from a Cash-eating Monster to a Money-making Machine. You can listen to the Wealth On Any Income Podcast on your favorite platform and please rate, review and subscribe. And if you'd like to know how books, movies, and Society programs you to be poor, and what the cure is, then log on to wealthonanyincome.com/TEDx. You'll hear my TEDx talk and can request the free 27-Page Roadmap to Complete Financial Choice® and receive a weekly email with tips, techniques, or inspiration around your business or your money. And if you'd like to see how you can increase your wealth, and donate to the causes that touch your heart, please check out our affordable program Wealth With Purpose on the WealthOnAnyIncome.com website. Until next week, be prosperous. Bye bye for now.

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