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The Truth About Real Estate Investing... for Canadians

For Canadians by Canadians sharing the truths about generating wealth through real estate investing. This show is about getting rich slowly, investing is a marathon, no get rich quick methods will be discussed here hosted by award winning investor and three time Realtor of the Year Erwin Szeto aka Mr. Hamilton
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Now displaying: August, 2019
Aug 24, 2019

On to this week’s guest!

Just wow, my mind is blown. I was introduced to Ryan Poole, Founder of Real Trade after I posted on Facebook in search of an expert on BlockChain and real estate and what do you know, Ryan’s Major Goal: To combine blockchain technology with real estate to revolutionize the real estate industry for the better and he’s rolling it out in phases including a globalized version of the MLS using Blockchain technology and a later phase for a Blockchain based currency called the Real to buy and sell real estate including fractional ownership of real estate. I’m probably not explaining it right so listen close to how Ryan explains it.

This is a very fascinating conversation I promise you.  Ryan is also a friend to Canadian’s as he helps Canadians buy real estate in Florida, we even chat about best places for a vacation home, how to finance it as I know you big time listeners can afford vacation property either now or in the near future :)

Aug 17, 2019

Hello fellow wealth hackers!!

How do you convince someone to invest in real estate?

This was a question I was asked while on a podcast which caught me off guard as I generally don’t try to convince anyone actively as I in I don’t tell someone to their face they should invest in real estate but maybe I should because that’s my exact advice to my family.

My cousin Christopher is about to turn 19 and he’s joining the Canadian Armed Forces. I couldn’t be more proud of him. Christopher is like a little brother to me and I’ve kept a close eye on him because we lost his father, my uncle too soon to stomach cancer just over ten years ago.

Christopher is a major gear head, he’s watched every episode of that popular TV show Top Gear five times each. His video game time is spent doing simulators of trains, planes, and automobiles. So naturally, he went to college to become a mechanic and in a few weeks, he will travel to Quebec for army basic training then Kingston for job training for 30 weeks.  Once he’s done training and is working, his salary is in the 60k range and he will get a full pension after 25 years of service. Not bad?

As a treat to Christopher, I allowed him to chauffeur my family and I around as part of his send off party in my new BMW.  He loves cars and driving fast but he said he can’t afford the payments. I agreed with him, he should never be paying so much for a car at his pay and how cars and houses are liabilities if they don’t make you income.

This is all beginner stuffs to all you listeners how if you’re going to buy a home to treat it like an investment: you’re buying for value, the property has value add opportunities whether it be renting out rooms or the basement or the garage or a parking space etc.... the location has amenities in demand, there is demand for both rental and resale. We covered all the basics and I told my cousin to rent and not buy his home but instead buy an investment property in Hamilton.  Why?

The armed forces has some wonderful subsidized housing and dining options. My cousin’s room and board and MEAL Plan is about $100 per week.  To me, that’s a no brainer for a single guy and because he could be transferred anywhere in Canada for work including poor investment towns, it make sense he invest where I can keep an eye on things, where he can adopt my real estate team to manage his property for him.  No need to reinvent the wheel.

That is my honest advice to my cousin in how I convince him to invest in real estate.

More generic advice for the starting investor is to invest within an hour drive of where you live. If your target area is too far, it makes management challenging and you are less likely to make that commute necessary to grow and manage your portfolio.  If you don’t invest where I invest, that’s totally cool, I have referrals for London, Kitchen/Waterloo/Cambridge, Barrie, in the East: Bowmanville, Oshawa, Peterborough, Lindsay, downtown Toronto with full service teams just like I have in Hamilton, Brantford, St. Catharines, and Niagara Region. 

This is your investment for your retirement or to fund your child’s education or a downpayment for their home. You don’t want to trust this process to just anyone, only settle for the best.

Speaking of the best, many of you have been asking for updates on our AirBnb property.  June was great as we grossed $4300 including HST but excluding cleaning fees as that expense is a pass through. Guests pay what we pay the cleaners so personally, I leave it out for this analysis.  We collected HST, AirBnb does not collect HST separately so it comes out of our revenues, and we pay HST on a bunch for cleaning, property management and all our operating expenses. We had lots of capital expenses and one party to clean up after so June was overall negative cash flow and we are ironing out the wrinkles with the property.  

In July we had a breaker fail.  The symptoms were: the 2nd floor lost power, flipping the breaker did nothing but it hummed when flipped on.  An emergency electrical service call was needed for $150. July generated the same revenue as July but without having so many capital costs, our expenses reduced by $1900.  For July we will positive cash flow about $1000 better than a single family. Keep in mind, summer months are better than other months of the year and as such, we were 90% occupied in the month of June and July. 

Our bookings are over 90% for the next 30 days which is great and fingers crossed we keep some momentum for September.  

Note this is just one of my properties and it made a lot of sense for this particular property to be an AirBnb.  The rest of our portfolio student rental and legal basement suites. My wife and I are professional investors so we do what makes most sense with each property.

We are wealth hackers and as such I’m starting stock option trading today. My friend Omar who owns over 30 properties is going to show me how.  Omar only works 30 minutes a day while options investing, he has more than me, works way less than I do and stock options is how he raised the majority of his downpayments to buy his 30+ investment properties.  Omar has been telling me to invest in stock options for almost two years and I didn’t really listen to him till I found out he taught my electrician who updated the electrical in my AirBnb to earn six figures in his first 12 months.  This I have to learn and I’ll provide updates here from time to time and I’ll have Omar and his business partner Matthew, both with 12 years experience options investing on an upcoming episode.

Omar and Matthew are wealth hackers and are speakers at our Nov 9th Wealth Hacker. Omar and Matthew have taught over 50 of their friends and family, funny enough, they’re all real estate investors too how to invest selling stock options. Omar makes a mid six figure income working a fraction of what I do hence we want to share this with the world.

Wealthhacker.ca for details and to get your tickets. Iamawealthhacker is my discount code for you.  November 9th at the Toronto Congress Center near Pearson Airport, all the best wealth hacks in real estate investment, stock option investing and starting a small business.  My friends Tom and Nick Karadza started a small business from zero and were awarded the Profit 500 award as one of the top 500 fastest growing companies in Canada for the last three years. www.wealthhacker.ca for more details and iamawealthhacker is my discount code for you listeners.

New Investor at Age 24, Working 3 Jobs, Lessons Learnt Buying First Property, Importance of Network and REI Friends with Joseph Costanza

On to this week’s guest, young Joseph Costanza who bought his very first property at the age of 24.  He’s a young hustler having a job since 16 and several side hustles as a bartender and landscaping. After graduating from university as an architect, Joseph was lucky enough to get a job in his field of study as an intern architect and quickly realized having a job did not translate into freedom hence he researched then decided on real estate.

After being referred to myself and my iWIN group, Joseph coached by Tammy Ditomaso on my team acquired his first rental property, a single family home he is turning into a house with legal basement apartment. 

Joseph is here to share his experience, the importance of surrounding oneself with like-minded people and has some tips on how to measure to produce drawings as part of the building permit process.  Joseph is an architect, hence he does his own drawings.

Aug 10, 2019

Hello Wealth Hackers and welcome to another episode of the truth about real estate investing.

Happy birthday to my partner in business and life Cherry Chan!! She’s a Super Woman in how she raises our kids, keeps me and my businesses in order and has her own thriving practice.

Quick funny story about Cherry: while she was still working in corporate, we were dating then and she would surf the MLS at work when bored (which was often) looking for investment property but she only owned her own home. After getting to know my business, we discussed investing in a student rental near Brock University in St. Catharines. My credit wasn't great at the time as I was a new agent so the house would be in Cherry's name.

I called Cherry while she was at work after I found a house in my target location, next to the only major mall in St. Catharines that doubled as a major public transit hub. I gave some vague details about the property to Cherry over the phone and we wrote the offer. We paid the owner exactly her asking as she was already discussing listing the house with a Realtor, the location and condition was A++ and any investor would want the same house because the annual rent would be over 1% of the after renovation value.

Cherry never saw the house till after we took possession and was happy with our purchase. The funny part was it wasn't till year after while reminiscing about how Cherry joint ventured on a property without ever seeing it, with her boyfriend she only knew less than a year but she wasn't concerned. Her contingency was if things didn't work out between us, she technically owned the house 🤣.

That was seven years ago. No different than our lives there were bumps, that basement flooded, a student snowboarded off the roof (he was on ODSP nonetheless) but otherwise it's been an excellent investment having doubled in value and the rents of gone up and zero vacancy the whole time.

Happy birthday again to my wealth hacker wife, to infinity and beyond. Together. 😘🥰😍

On to the subject on real estate

A kind gentleman who left a 5 star review on itunes asked me this: “my commute is 2 hours and I am taking courses to become a licensed real estate professional, what audio books would you recommend?”

My two cents: “If you're not first, you’re last” by Grant Cardone. The very same book, forms the teachings presented in part of Cardone University that he sells for a lot of money hence there is a lot of value in the book.  I generally find we can all improve our sales skills. Sales is not what most thing, the vast majority of sales people don’t take the profession as seriously as folks like yourselves do.  

No different than how the amateur invests in real estate vs. how a professional does.  If you’ve ever been a secret shopper as a tenant viewing properties for rent or for sale vs. toured our clients’ properties, you would see a big difference. Professionals invest more in their properties to attract the best tenants who pay the best rents knowing tenants all want clean and safe.  Invest more includes time and effort in marketing and screening tenants. If you read about tenant nightmare stories in the news, you’ll note the landlords never ran credit checks or a Naborly report on the prospective tenant.

You all know the hoops we must jump through to get a mortgage.  It would be advisable to screen tenants similarly as a bad tenant is a very expensive mistake when you are trusting them with a half a million dollar asset.

If you’re looking to get started in becoming a wealth hacker, someone on the most efficient path to building wealth, let us know.  We offer property tours in each of the top towns around the GTA which upcoming tours in Brantford and Collingwood.

We have the Wealth Hacker conference on Nov 9th, a master class on the most efficient paths to success in small business, real estate and stock options.  Go to www.wealthhacker.ca for details, discount code iamawealthhacker 

For those who are very serious about their success, we have my membership group called iWIN, short for the Infinity Wealth Investment Network.  We are a close knit group that meets monthly to share best practices on investing in real estate, staying up on the latest strategies. We meetup quarterly for a mastermind iWIN style, we do something fun together then we mastermind over a meal. So far this summer we did a Niagara Wine Tour on bike and a separate event on powerboats on a lake up north.  Both were followed by lunch and everyone had an amazing time networking with like minded people and coming away with actionable advice. For details, go to www.infinitywealth.ca 

Ex Financial Planner Now Multifamily Investing East of Toronto, Off Market Deals, Cap Rates and JV Structures with Sarah Coupland

On to this week’s guest, my friend who is a member of my mastermind group, Sarah Coupland of Tag Properties (www.tagproperties.ca

Sarah is a successful, multifamily real estate investor and one of the nicest people you will ever meet. In this interview, she took our virtual meet from her cottage afforded to her by her real estate businesses.

Sarah invests mostly where she lives, in Cobourg, Ontario where she owns several small multifamily properties.  Sarah shares how she got started and how her boyfriend now husband had to help her renovate her house if he wanted to see her (yay free labour!), she shares how she sources properties off market often buying the properties no one else wants for the best value add strategies, some crazy stories of police raiding one of her rental properties, her cap rates and show she structures the financials for joint venture partners.

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