At what time should I leave my job to do real estate investing full time? This is a question for the ages (and for the courageous!). As my 10 year anniversary of saying goodbye to the corporate world to follow my dream of being a full-time real estate investor, I can look back and reliably answer that question. I wish I had further space and time to write about this, but I don’t, so I’ll go over the basics to get you thinking and on the correct course.
The Two Most Significant Things For You to Do:
#1) Keep your full-time job until you save up adequate cash flow from your real estate investments to pay your everyday living costs. In reality, it is sensible to do this for a minimum of six months. At the six month mark, you have solid evidence that it can be done. As your portfolio develops, you’ll discover that your job will begin to get in the way of your investing. Even though you won’t find a picture-perfect time to leave your job, you’ll recognize when it’s time.
#2) Within those six months, save up six months’ worth of living expenses. This will become your reserves during the “snug” months – and there will be snug months, I assure you.
Prior to saying a final goodbye to your job, you’ll have to learn to be somebody you’re not right now. Do you recall the theory of “Be-Have-Do”? Well, that theory is unfitting. The accurate theory is “Be-Do-Have”. In order to have something, you foremost have to Be that person, then the Have arises by Doing. Okay, I apologize if I confused you (it’s a Monday!), but to get right to the point, you must cultivate an entrepreneur’s mentality. Going from an employee way of thought to an entrepreneur’s way of thought is crucial to effectively leaving your job (and remaining gone!).
After I left my employment to do real estate investing full time, I recognized that in order to have independence, I had to let go of sanctuary. So, what I did was let go of my sanctuary (my pay check) a small amount at a time by spending my free time operating my real estate business and then altering my job to a part-time thing. It was a four year (yes, 4 years!) era of ambiguity, continuous planning, investing, and hard work (plus raising a teenager).
At the four year mark, my job was getting in the way of my real estate business which had developed fairly well. At this time, I had to make a choice. I had a good job with benefits plus I had plenty of real estate revenue to live off of. Life was grand. But was it really? Was I living a focused life? Could I grasp the potential my real estate business had? On Dec 31st of that fourth year, I offered my letter of resignation. Life has certainly changed. Nowadays it seems like I was designed to do this full time. But had I not strategized this prudently, worked on my character, and dove into real estate, I never would have revealed that the grass is in fact greener on the other side.
The moral of this story is that although you cannot foresee the future, your future will be decided by what’s going on in your head, the movements you plan and take, and your yearning to stick with it when rough times come and go.