Financial Freedom with Real Estate Investing

Is fear stopping you from doing your first multifamily real estate deal? If you’re not the type of person to simply jump ship from the relative safety (and health insurance) that comes with a W-2 job, but you know you can’t spend the rest of your life on the hamster wheel, then NOW is the time to activate what Craig Schumacher, MAI, calls ‘calculated courage.’

Craig Schumacher, MAI is the Managing Member at IRV Capital LLC, a real estate investment firm that focuses on multifamily and student apartments. Craig spent 25 years working as a commercial appraiser and valuation specialist. Four years ago, he decided to stop helping other people make a fortune in real estate and build a portfolio of his own. Craig closed on his first syndication deal in January, bringing him to a total of 89-units (with another 28 under contract).

On this episode of Apartment Building Investing, Craig joins me to explain how he recently quit his job as an appraiser to pursue multifamily investing full time. He describes the AHA moment that inspired him to take action in 2016 and walks us through the key lessons learned from his difficult first deal. Listen in to understand what Craig would tell his younger self about getting started in real estate investing and learn what he is doing now to scale his multifamily portfolio!

Key Takeaways

Craig’s transition from appraising real estate to investing

  • Biggest hurdle = solving health insurance issue
  • Took time to enact plan but never been happier

What inspired Craig to make a change

  • Shocking self-assessment at age 45
  • Not in position to put kids through college + retire

How Craig got started with real estate investing

  • Bought 5 condos + 2 duplexes (university housing)
  • Gain experience as landlord, bank relationships

Craig’s rocky transition to multifamily

  • Sold university rental portfolio to buy 28-unit
  • $20K out of pocket for foundation issues
  • Challenges around self-managing property

Craig’s key lessons learned from his first deal

  • Deeper level of due diligence re: leak disclaimer
  • Include nearby complexes in evaluation

Craig’s highly successful second multifamily deal

  • 29 units next to Illinois State University
  • Convert to student housing ($17K to $25K/month)
  • Cash-out refi to return 100% of investor cash

Why sellers and brokers took Craig seriously

  • Some credibility from SFH portfolio
  • Decades of experience as appraiser

What Craig would do differently in retrospect

  • Push past fear to take big shot sooner
  • Cultivate ‘calculated courage’

How Craig made time for multifamily

  • Dedicate every free moment to investing
  • 14-hour days for 4 years, supportive spouse

How Craig overcame his fears around raising capital

  • Start with friends, family and friends of friends
  • Gets easier every time as share enthusiasm

Craig’s plan for scaling his multifamily portfolio

  • Expand network via podcasts, conferences
  • Build platform by sharing content online

Craig’s advice for aspiring multifamily investors

  • Partner with experienced investor
  • Add action to make ideas real

Connect with Craig Schumacher, MAI

IRV Capital

Craig on LinkedIn


Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert T. Kiyosaki


Real Estate Guys Create Your Future Goal Setting Retreat

What’s the Best Investment: The Stock Market or Real Estate?

Join the Nighthawk Equity Investor Club

Michael’s Mentoring Program

Partner with Michael

Podcast Show Notes

Review the Podcast on iTunes

Michael’s Website

Michael on Facebook

Michael on Instagram

Michael on YouTube

Apartment Investor Network Facebook Group

Direct download: ABI_198.mp3
Category:Commercial Real Estate -- posted at: 1:00am EST

Think you need to be a Lone Wolf on your first multifamily deal? Brian Briscoe was looking at 6- and 8-unit multifamily deals until he realized he could go bigger, faster if he had help. And he was right. Brian joined the Michael Blank network, and 11 months later, he had joint ventured on a 55-unit deal and had another 33 under contract! His team is looking to add another 500 units to their portfolio in 2020.

Today, Brian is the Director of Operations at Four Oaks Capital, a multifamily investment firm specializing in the acquisition, repositioning and rebranding of apartment buildings via a private equity fund structure. Since joining forces in June of 2019, his team of four has acquired 88 units and has another 80 under contract. Brian also serves as the Western Hemisphere Affairs Officer for the United States Marine Corps.

On this episode of Apartment Building Investing, Brian joins me to explain how he found his current partners through our network and discuss how they did three deals in 15 short months! He shares how Four Oaks Capital found its first deal and what they did to overcome a major hurdle (with help from an experienced mentor) just nine days before closing. Listen in for insight into how Brian and his partners have defined their individual roles in the company and learn how YOU can leverage joint venturing to accelerate your multifamily success.

Key Takeaways

What inspired Brian’s interest in multifamily

  • Read Keller’s book when deployed in Middle East
  • Started consuming multifamily podcasts + books
  • Became part of Michael Blank network

The timeline around Brian’s first three deals

  • 11 months to close on 55-unit
  • Closed on 33-unit last week
  • 80-unit under contract now

How Brian built credibility with brokers

  • Trip to South Carolina to meet face-to-face
  • Persistent follow-up (action + communication)

Four Oaks Capital’s first 55-unit deal in Spartanburg, SC

  • Two properties in good condition but dated
  • Downtown units well below market rent

The snag Brian’s team faced in closing their first deal

  • Rates on loans went from 3.9% to 5.1% (lost $600K in proceeds)
  • Bump equity from 75% to 90% to compensate investors

The role mentors played in Brian’s first deal

  • Guidance prior to putting in offer
  • Offered idea to move needle on investor returns

Four Oak’s Capital’s second deal

  • Result of follow-up with broker met on trip to SC
  • 33-unit diamond in the rough at unbeatable price
  • Plan to double value via $400K in renovations

Brian’s insight around The Law of the First Deal

  • Brokers call with off-market deals
  • Three deals in 15 months

How Brian’s partners defined their individual roles

  • Acquisitions, asset management and raise money
  • Fluid based on current needs

Four Oaks Capital’s plans to scale

  • Constrained by how much money can raise
  • Build platform (YouTube, social and podcast)
  • Attend and start own Meetups

What facilitated Brian’s mindset shift

  • Conversations with investors in network
  • Finite amount of time to replace income

Brian’s advice for aspiring multifamily investors

  • Learn game + get really good at it
  • Take action and don’t stop
  • Find people to support you

Connect with Brian Briscoe

Four Oaks Capital



Deal Maker Mastermind

Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert T. Kiyosaki

The Millionaire Real Estate Investor by Gary Keller, Dave Jenks and Jay Papasan

Joe Fairless Podcast

Rod Khleif Podcast

Deal Maker Live

Michael’s Mentoring Program

Michael’s Platform Building Webinar

Join the Nighthawk Equity Investor Club

Podcast Show Notes

Review the Podcast on iTunes

Michael’s Website

Michael on Facebook

Michael on Instagram

Michael on YouTube

Apartment Investor Network Facebook Group

Direct download: ABI_197.mp3
Category:Commercial Real Estate -- posted at: 1:00am EST

So, you don’t have real estate investing experience. And you don’t have any money of your own to invest. What if I told you that in two short years, you could be closing on your first deal of 200-plus units? That you could be fielding calls from brokers at Marcus & Millichap? That you could be building your own multifamily brand?

Anthony Metzger spent 10 years in the wine industry, working as a sommelier and winemaker in the US and Europe before setting his sights on multifamily real estate. After his brother introduced him to The Ultimate Guide to Apartment Building Investing at the end of 2017, Anthony got busy underwriting deals and reaching out to brokers. Two short years later (in a joint venture with Nighthawk Equity), Anthony has closed on his first deal, a 218-unit multifamily property in Little Rock, Arkansas.

On this episode of Apartment Building Investing, Anthony joins me to share what inspired his interest in multifamily and walk us through the experience of doing his first deal. He explains how learning the language of real estate gave him credibility with brokers and how consistent practice analyzing deals and talking to brokers built his confidence. Listen in to understand how the Nighthawk Equity team supported Anthony in the buyer’s interview and learn how to align yourself with a lead sponsor to do YOUR first multifamily deal.

Key Takeaways

What inspired Anthony’s interest in multifamily

  • Listening to Grant Cardone and Robert Kiyosaki
  • Always been entrepreneur, hungry for project

Anthony’s initial real estate goal

  • Partner with Nighthawk Equity to do first deal
  • Didn’t want to raise money until experienced

How things changed for Anthony once his first deal closed

  • Taking calls from Marcus & Millichap
  • Brokers approach with off-market deals

How Anthony got brokers to take him seriously

  • Learned language of investing from Ultimate Guide
  • Genuine in building relationships with brokers

Anthony’s advice on demonstrating confidence with brokers

  • Prepare with script based on underwriting
  • Practice on ‘throw away market’

Anthony’s interaction with the broker on his first deal

  • Several calls to discuss deal + ask questions
  • Spitball ballpark number, asked to draft LOI

The ideal time to bring on a joint venture partner

  • After verbal agreement but before signed LOI
  • Support in buyer’s interview, include JV terms

What to expect from a buyer’s interview

  • Seller talks to everyone who made offers
  • Choose person most likely to close deal

Anthony’s approach to aligning with a lead sponsor

  • Build relationship at events, bring deals
  • Respect time by adding value (inside track)

What’s next for Anthony

  • Do second deal
  • Build own multifamily brand

Anthony’s advice for aspiring multifamily investors

  • Learn to underwrite + practice making offers
  • Network to build relationship with sponsor

Connect with Anthony Metzger



Michael’s Free First Deal Training

Anthony’s Wine Documentary: The Pink Grape

Grant Cardone

Robert Kiyosaki

Michael’s Ultimate Guide to Apartment Building Investing

Michael’s Syndicated Deal Analyzer

Michael’s Deal Desk

Nighthawk Equity

Michael’s Deal Maker Mastermind

Deal Maker Live

Michael’s Mentoring Program

Podcast Show Notes

Review the Podcast on iTunes

Michael’s Website

Michael on Facebook

Michael on Instagram

Michael on YouTube

Apartment Investor Network Facebook Group

Direct download: ABI_196.mp3
Category:Commercial Real Estate -- posted at: 1:00am EST

Most of us dream of retirement because we’ll FINALLY have the time freedom to do things that interest us and spend time with the people we love. But what if you didn’t have to wait until you turned 65 to live that dream? What if you could retire early? Better yet, what if you could retire in the next few years? Passive investing in multifamily syndications helped Travis Watts do just that, and you could be next!

Travis is an experienced passive investor and Director of Investor Relations at Ashcroft Capital, a national multifamily investment firm with more than $820M in assets under management. Prior to pursuing real estate full-time, Travis worked a grueling job in the oil industry, spending 14-hour days outside in extreme weather while saving money to invest in single-family rentals and apartment building syndications.

On this episode of Apartment Building Investing, Travis joins me to discuss the time freedom he enjoys now as a passive investor in multifamily real estate. He explains how he saved the money to invest via extreme budgeting and what made SFH investing unsustainable. Listen in for Travis’ insight around where to find a good syndication team and learn how YOU can follow in his footsteps and quit your W-2 with passive investing!

Key Takeaways

Travis’ path to full-time passive investing

  • Demanding job in oil industry
  • Laid off in oil downturn but already financially independent

How Travis’ life is different now

  • Unhappy as W-2 employee, everyday struggle
  • Now pursues things interested in (personal growth)

How Travis saved money to invest

  • Brought up with conservative parents, extreme budgeters
  • Didn’t change lifestyle as income grew from $20K to six figures

How Travis invested his money before multifamily

  • Pulled money from stock market after Rich Dad’s Prophecy
  • House hacking strategy (first-time home buyer tax credit)
  • Sought high-paying job to continue buying SFH
  • Buy-and-hold, fix-and-flip as well as vacation rentals

What inspired Travis’ transition to multifamily

  • SFH strategies had become job on top of W-2
  • Single-family not scalable, sustainable or passive

The FIRE movement 4% rule

  • Passive income goal x 25 = amount to invest
  • EX: 30K x 25 = $750K investment

What kind of income you can generate as a passive investor

  • 7% to 10% cashflow
  • Equity upside upon sale or refinance

Travis’ insight on the tax benefits of multifamily

  • Use bonus depreciation for tax-free distributions
  • Capital gains upon sale (usually offset by gains)

The beauty of the infinite return model

  • Refinance after 5 years to return most of capital
  • Continue to earn returns, no money in deal

Travis’ top investing AHA moments

Travis’ advice for aspiring passive investors

  1. Start with WHY
  2. Create a budget (know where money going)

How to vet a syndication team

  • Ensure strategy aligns with personal philosophy
  • Track record, markets you believe in

Where to find a good syndication team

  • Go to seminars and local meetups for networking
  • Start with world-of-mouth referral, follow up with due diligence

Connect with Travis Watts

Ashcroft Capital


Travis on LinkedIn

Travis on Facebook


Spencer Hilligoss on ABI EP186

Jan Larson on ABI EP181

Ryan McKenna on ABI EP174

Rich Dad’s Prophecy: Why the Biggest Stock Market Crash in History Is Still Coming … And How You Can Prepare Yourself and Profit from It! by Robert T. Kiyosaki

The FIRE Movement

Tax-Free Wealth: How to Build Massive Wealth by Permanently Lowering Your Taxes by Tom Wheelwright

Work with Tom Wheelwright

Join the Nighthawk Equity Investor Club

Podcast Show Notes

Review the Podcast on iTunes

Michael’s Website

Michael on Facebook

Michael on Instagram

Michael on YouTube

Apartment Investor Network Facebook Group

Direct download: ABI_195.mp3
Category:Commercial Real Estate -- posted at: 1:00am EST