How to Effectively Communicate About Finances

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Money can be a touchy subject, but it’s important that couples are able to have constructive conversations about financial goals. We hear from investors all the time who struggle to get on the same page as their spouse. In fact, this is an issue Natali and I encountered early on in our marriage.

Let's be honest: money is a huge pain point for many people! I've discussed before that I'd been engrained with limiting beliefs about money, and I don't think that's rare. Many of us hold some sort of fear about money. Even if these fears aren't rational, they can feel very real! And when those fears are threatened, they can explode into a plethora of emotions. 

Early in our marriage, we would often disagree about finances and have unproductive conversations. It’s very common for what should be a reasonable discussion to explode into a fight. We're not perfect, but over the years we've made a lot of progress. We’ve put together four tips you can use to avoid fighting with your partner about money:

  1. Recognize your own fears and limiting beliefs about money. Most of us have these, but overcoming them requires introspection. Consider your fears, and where they stem from. Realize that most of our fears never become a reality.
  2. Consider your partner’s fears. Once you understand their background, and the things that trigger their fears, you can start being more careful. If you know your spouse is fearful of lack, you can do your best to not feed those fears.
  3. Also, know your numbers. Think about your Freedom Number, and calculate your net worth. If you understand your goals and where you’re headed, you’ll be more centered in reality.
  4. Our last tip is to make and trust your plan. You both need to be the same page, but if your plan is based on shared values, you can move in the right direction intentionally.

Using these four tips has helped me have more productive, positive conversations about finances, and I hope they can do the same for you! 

 Money can be a touchy subject, but it’s important that couples are able to have constructive conversations about financial goals.

Why Don't More People Invest in Real Estate?

I love talking to investors and prospective investors about the merits of rental real estate. But one questions I hear on a regular basis is, "If real estate investing is so easy, why isn’t everyone doing it?” Obviously every person has their own unique circumstances, but for the most part I've found that there are two big reasons why people don’t invest in real estate.

The first reason why buy and hold investing isn’t more popular is simply a lack of education. Many people are not aware of the benefits of purchasing buy and hold real estate, and they certainly don’t realize how much they could be earning.

That's why I'm so passionate about sharing what I know about real estate investing! There is so much potential for people to build wealth for their family. Unfortunately, most people simply don't know. Big retirement planning companies advertise so they can make a commission, but you don't see commercials for real estate investing, because it doesn't benefit anyone but the investor.

Also, I find that many people are held back by fear. They don’t consider the potential of what could go right, because they’re too focused on their own hesitations and anxieties. I've heard from a lot of people who have considered investing, but they're too fearful about losing their money. 

If you’re ready to transform the way you think about money and release your fears, the first thing you should do is find your Financial Freedom Number. When you download the free worksheet, you’ll be better able to understand exactly what financial freedom looks like for you, and how many rental properties you’ll need to acquire. You can overcome your fear about money, but you have to begin working toward it.

 there are two big reasons why people don’t invest in real estate.

Lifestyle Planning for Real Estate Investors

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If you’re familiar with my message, you’ll know I’m passionate about helping people find their Freedom Number. It’s a formula I’ve created to help others achieve financial freedom. But financial freedom is about more than a number. True freedom is having the ability to live the lifestyle you want.

It’s about taking a look at what kind of lifestyle you’d like to have. We only get one short life; we might as well make the most of it. We tend to plan simple aspects of out lives, but we don’t take the time to take a hard look at how we really want to live.

The first step is to be clear about your purpose. Once you identify your purpose, you’ll be excited to pursue it with passion. You’ll embrace life with more enthusiasm.

Secondly, you have to be honest with yourself. Be completely truthful about what it is that you desire. This can be hard for many people; too often we undercut our goals. Don’t sell yourself short.

The third step is to believe that the lifestyle that you imagine is possible. If you can see the vision that you hold, it will happen. I can tell you from experience, shifting your perspective makes all the difference.

Then, you have to set your goals. You have to map out exactly what you plan to achieve, and how you’re going to put the plan in action. You have to sit down, build spreadsheets, and think through the numbers. It isn’t enough to just plant the seed; you have to water it consistently.

 Financial freedom through real estate investing is about more than a number. True freedom is having the ability to live the lifestyle you want.

How to Handle Adversity in Real Estate Investing

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Have you ever allowed a setback to get you down? We all deal with adversity, but in order to succeed, it’s important to not give up. As real estate investors, hardships are inevitable, so we have to commit to not quitting when things don’t go exactly as planned.

Recently, a friend recommended I read the book, The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck by Mark Manson. Yes, it’s vulgar, but the overarching theme has been invaluable to me! If you can look past the language, this book is filled with incredible pearls of wisdom about facing adversity.

To me, one of the key takeaways from the book was that for many of us, unhappiness stems from the pursuit of happiness. This idea blew me away—what a paradigm shift! We hold these ideas that we’ll be happy when we meet a certain goal, but that’s just not true. You have to dissolve that idea in order to succeed! It’s about changing your mindset.

For example, I once worked with an investor who had a goal of acquiring 100 properties. That was his main purpose, and it seemed that nothing else could bother him. When he had a bad experience with one property, he didn’t let it completely derail him. He continued ahead, focusing on his goal.

That’s exactly what you have to do—accept disappointment as part of the process. When you understand that things aren’t always going to go according to plan, you’ll be happier. And when you get in that mindset, you’ll be more successful.

 Have you ever allowed a setback to get you down in real estate investing? We all deal with adversity, but in order to succeed, it’s important to not give up.

Writing a Family Mission Statement

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There are so many intricacies that go into running a successful family business. Undeniably, it’s important to properly organize banking accounts and taxes, but unless you’ve actually contemplated the underlying motives for your business, it can be difficult to act in accordance with your values. And that’s why we decided to write a family mission statement. 

Our lawyers wrote a book titled, Entrusted: Building a Legacy That Lasts, which is a discussion on successful transfer of wealth to succeeding generations. Not just monetary wealth, but the less palpable aspects of wealth, such as wisdom, lessons, and virtues. 

An exercise in the book is focused on writing a family mission statement. Its purpose is to allow you to make known the principles on which your wealth was built. It might sound hokey or self-congratulatory to sit down and think about your family mission statement, but to us it has proven to be a helpful tool.

Having a tangible mission statement for our family helps us feel more secure about the future our wealth, and the values we plan to instill in our children. Another situation to consider is that should a trustee need to make a decision on behalf of your trust, they will have a clear set of values to act in agreement with.

On the podcast, we’re getting more in-depth about the idea of a family mission statement. We’ll discuss the benefits of this exercise, and the importance of having a straightforward approach in estate planning. We hope you’ll consider taking the opportunity to make clear your own family values.  

Morris Family Mission Statement

We take great pride in being the Morris family. We have spent the majority of our time and energy in creating a legacy of love, health, and wealth for our children and their children to come. We never stop learning to grow in those three tenets: love, health, and wealth. We hope that our descendants value those things in that order and learn to pursue them with meaning and passion.

We believe that happiness is made from loving human connections and the pursuit of meaningful goals. We believe that each person assigns meaning differently in their life and that freedom is the ability to pursue your own meaning markers. We hope that each of our descendants can dream up and chase their own goals knowing that happiness lies in every step, not in the end result.

We believe that wealth follows passion. We believe that career is amplified when you can see your contribution to making the world better. We believe the human race grows when each of us make our own decisions out of love and courage, not obligation and fear. We believe that a strong family and support group help to make those decisions a lot easier.

We create this trust to help our descendants pursue their own paths. We do not want to pave that path for them, only to influence it with the life lessons we have learned. We believe in our children. They have been our greatest gift in life. We want to serve as proud ancestors as they pursue their own personal legends.

“When we love, we always strive to become better than we are. When we strive to become better than we are, everything around us becomes better too.” — Paulo Coelho, The Alchemist

 We get in-depth about the idea of a family mission statement. We’ll discuss the benefits of this exercise, and the importance of having a straightforward approach in estate planning.

Cultivating a Wealthy Mindset

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I’ve been poor, and thanks to real estate investing I’ve also been wealthy. You might be surprised to learn that the biggest difference between the two is not about money, but more so about mindset. The good news is, if you’re purposeful you can change your mindset, which will in turn change your financial situation.

I spend a lot of time talking to people who are interested in building wealth through real estate. And unfortunately, I’m met with a lot of fear-based objections. Many people out there are simply not in the right headspace to begin creating wealth.

If you think you cannot change your financial situation due to personal circumstances, that’s a lie you are telling yourself. I truly believe that we hold the ability to manifest money through our thoughts. And if you’re telling yourself that your situation will never improve, then that’s exactly what will happen.

That’s why it’s important to take inventory of your thoughts, and think about what triggers you. If you are able to identify those thoughts and fears, then you can quiet them. If you really want to create change, you’ll need to squash any beliefs that do not align with your goal. 

Natali and I put together a free download you can use to confront your limiting beliefs so that you are able to attract wealth into your life. Get your free copy here!  

 How to confront your limiting beliefs so that you are able to attract wealth into your life - free download.

Becoming a Hands-Off Investor

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My mission is to make real estate investing passive. That's the whole point! I don't want this to be a full time job. That's why I help other investors with turnkey real estate. Purchasing a turnkey property provides enormous benefits, but requires the investor to be hands-off. For some people, it can be hard to relinquish control and trust the process.

I always advise new investors to think about the kind of lifestyle they want to live. Are you getting into real estate investing as a job? Or are you trying to create passive income and more time for yourself? There’s no right or wrong answer, but you need to be honest with yourself.

Do you want to pick out paint colors? Do you want to manage the rehab process from start to finish? If you enjoy those tasks, then turnkey investing is not for you. If you can’t let go of those small details, you’ll probably want to be hands-on with property management too.

Part of turnkey investing is letting go. It’s supposed to be passive! Your job as the investor is to trust the process, put your faith in the team, and then sit back and collect the rent checks. 

If it's not in your personality type to let go of those details, I have a suggestion for you. You can harness that energy in the right direction. While you can't pick the paint or the tenant in a turnkey property, you CAN be incredibly meticulous in your bookkeeping and organization. Check out our podcast episode on how to organize your real estate investments.

 Tips on making real estate investing passive.