I just celebrated 5 successful years in business so what a perfect time to start a podcast!
You can listen to our first episode below (and follow along with the transcript underneath)
Hi Everyone, Christine here from The Property Couch brought to you by Smarter Property Investing.
Today is really exciting for me, for this first episode, and the reason is because I just celebrated on the 18th of August 2019, 5 years in business.
5 years sharing, caring and offering information and guiding my clients through the whirlwind of property investing.
Today I am here with Donna and we’re going to go through a few things. Why did I get into business, how I help people, how I hold their hand and how I take them along the way and get them to be very successful in property.
Christine: Hi Donna, how are you going?
Donna: I’m good, how are you?
Christine: Very well thank you.
Donna: Before we go into the client mode, I have a question for you Christine
Christine: Yes, Donna what’s that?
Donna: Over the last 5 years (congratulations by the way) what has been the most standout moment for you in your business journey?
Christine: I suppose the funny part there is, I never really realised I was going into business. I never realised I was building a business. What I was doing was helping friends, family along the way about my successful journey in property investing. However, it wasn’t always successful, there were mistakes, but that allows me to teach people NOT to make those mistakes.
I really was just helping people. But along the way I’ve actually built a very successful business. Building that business – the ‘ah ha’ moments are I have to tell you when I’m sitting in front of a client and literally when the light bulb goes on in their mind, that they CAN do this.
Too often too many people think that they can’t do it. They think investing in property is just for people that I don’t know, are earning a lot more money or are more wealthier than them – but the light bulb goes on and they go ‘yes we can do it’. I have mum and dads, singles and couples without kids and younger people just coming out of university they realise that they can invest in property. So that’s my ah ha moment.
Donna: Why is that so important to you? I saw that twinkle in your eye, so why is that so special?
Christine: I think it’s because of me when I was growing up as a child. Part of my story is that at 15 and 4 months years old I had to leave secondary school to help financially support our family. My mum, dad and my brothers.
So, home ownership to me was something so far in the future, I couldn’t even comprehend it because a lot of my upbringing was living in caravans, or mum and dad rented houses. Mum and dad actually didn’t own a house until after I got married, after 18.
So, the thought of having property to me is coming from my childhood thinking that I couldn’t. Now that I have multiple properties, a multimillion dollar property portfolio (thinking for many many many years that I couldn’t do it) now that I can do it, I learned how to do it (AND it’s not as hard as what people think), or as frightening or as devastating – I just get excited when people realise they can do it.
Because it’s just everyday mums and dads and everyday people (just like me) – it’s not anything scientific. It just happens!
Donna: Is there a specific client in the past that you can think of, that learned that information of “holy crap, I CAN do this, this is not for the elitist”? That is stands out in your mind of someone who has had a complete transformed life by investing in property?
Christine: Look there is a couple that come to mind and in the first instance its actually two females.
The first female, she was divorced, had a teenage son and she had a home. However, she didn’t think she could ever invest and she was really worried about life in general and she thought that she would have to eventually sell her home just to make ends meet.
I came into her world and we had a conversation and we looked at what she had, what she was doing, how much money she was earning and low and behold all I suggested to her was perhaps you need to speak to a mortgage broker to see whether or not you can actually borrow any money, and she could.
That was a light bulb moment for her, the fact that she could borrow money. In that instance, once I knew what her borrowing capacity was and what I knew her risk level was (when it comes to debt) we worked out that if she could find something around the $400,000 mark she could actually sleep at night and be comfortable with it.
That took about three months for me to make sure that I got the right investment property style for her and it has completely changed her life.
She has now had that property just on five years, it’s done extremely well. The purchase price was $365,000 and it’s done extremely well in the area that we chose, and she keeps on telling me – Christine you changed my life financially and emotionally.
She got so confident, that the woman is just about to re-marry and she’s so happy. So, her life not only changed financially but personally and her confidence has grown just like that.
Donna: That’s awesome
Christine: The other lady, another divorced lady that was in her fifties. She came out of a divorce and didn’t come out with a very big settlement, didn’t have much in super – because she was a stay at home mum (which was really fantastic and she had three children) and to date she came on into my world just on 5 years ago as a referral and today she signed her fourth contract.
Her cash flow is great, she is building a property portfolio and she’s just amazed at what she’s achieved by having a plan, knowing that she can. She was very comfortable investing interstate because that was what she could afford (by the way guys I’m a Melbourne girl and we’re coming to you from downtown Melbourne) and she actually invested interstate with her first investment.
Her second investment was interstate, her third investment was in Victoria and her fourth investment again was in Victoria. So, she is amazed with what she had achieved, and she knows that she is going to be financially fit. She’s comfortable with knowing that she can help her kids (now she’s actually teaching her kids from what I’ve taught her) and she’s going to be fine.
There are two stand outs with women.
I have a standout dad, whereby yes, he was coming to the end of his relationship and he obviously had children and his ex, obviously got a really good pay out. We worked together with his emotional status of what had happened, what was coming forward, how he still wanted to support his kids and for him to have to have property himself as well.
So, he left the family home (the ex-wife took over the family home) and we worked with a bit of savings, we worked with what he could borrow and he’s actually built a property portfolio of three properties as well.
So that was a dad and he was really excited about how he had the confidence to move forward and he didn’t feel like a failure and that is probably the biggest thing that I have been dealing with.
As much as I use property as this vehicle to get to where they want to be, it’s the emotional rollercoaster ride that I help put them through it because quite frankly been there, done that myself.
I understand what they’re going through and it’s about knowing that they can achieve. They’re proud of what they have decided to do and they’re really comfortable supporting their children.
Donna: That’s really cool, I love that. There is an emotional component that you’re helping people with. The confidence. Being able to sleep at night, because they know they have money to live on when they retire. Which would then fall into other things I imagine like relationships, less stressed, they can pick the job that the like rather than just working in any job because they don’t have a choice in life in what they want to do. So, you’re effectively giving them choices and freedom. It’s not just about having properties in your portfolio.
It’s so much more than that.
What are your plans for the next 5 years?
Christine: That’s a really good question Donna. I must admit in the 5 years, there was a part of the 5 years (just over 18 months ago) I was going gung-ho because I was just so excited helping people all the time.
I did take a step back and decided that I really will only take on 25 new clients each year. The reason being is because I want to make sure that when I help people, I really need to make sure I understand them, their situation, their family and what they want to achieve.
Quite frankly Donna, I have actually said no to people, because they shouldn’t be investing in property because its not going to be the right strategy for them.
So in the next 5 years, I can only hope that well I will be taking on another 25 new clients a year which would be really good and know that I’ve helped hundreds and hundreds of people achieve what they have wanted to achieve and by that time, gee Donna I’ll be 67 (so I just gave that out everybody) and it could be that I only hope that the people that I have taught the strategy to has caused a ripple effect.
My business has changed in the last 5 years, in the sense that people would come into my world and turn into clients and over the last 5 years I am now teaching the children of those clients exactly what to do – so it’s become a generational thing. In the next 5 years I can only hope the generation changes again.
So not only am I changing lives I am actually changing generations, whole families. It just happened because the strategy works. It can be taught to anybody.
Donna: Well that’s a good segway because I heard on the grapevine that you are planning on doing something with kids maybe. Can you share a little bit about that?
Christine: I think we all hear today that parents say “our children will never be able to get into the property market, property is just too expensive, they will never be able to save the deposit” – look I can empathise with that because you know growing up to get into property we had to have a 20% deposit. You don’t of course have to have that today because of our banking and so forth, but we’re also living in a society where it’s become a cashless society and I feel that children don’t really understand what money is.
They know we need money and they know we can tap and buy things but that don’t actually understand how to get it or perhaps how to earn it or what money is made of.
So, I would love to think that what we will be releasing hopefully by the end of the year is a strategy to help teach kids not only save, but understand what money is about and to get them into property. So, parents can stop thinking my kid won’t get into property.
They will. They will actually get into property, it’s a lot easier than what people think. I’m of the believer that you shouldn’t be thinking about buying a property where it’s the ultimate place where you will live because just like careers, property is a stepping stone and we’re into different careers now, so you can have different types of property owned and to be a property owner, it’s not necessarily a home owner.
You can be a property owner and property is a vehicle to make money a home owner is actually where your heart is. So, you can live anywhere you want to live but you can buy property to actually help you financially.
Donna: Love it. I think that’s a nice little starter for your first episode. Is there anything else you want to add before we close off?
Christine: There will be people out there that will be dying to know what my strategy is and I would be very happy to share it (and that’s what we will be doing over the next few episodes), but if you have a question about property my contact me here so I’m happy for you to call me with a question, but until then I look forward to talking to you again from the couch!