One moment in Michael Oliver’s life changed his career path entirely. While working in the fashion world, he suddenly discovered that his grandmother’s house was about to be foreclosed due to her unpaid taxes. This was enough for him to jump feet first into the world of real estate.
“I got started in real estate in 2018 after finding out my grandmother’s house, who passed in 2009, was at risk of being foreclosed on for unpaid taxes. At the time I was in the fashion industry and spending a lot of time traveling back and forth from Los Angeles managing production. I had to pay $12k in back taxes before the following day to save it from being auctioned off. Eventually, I also needed to get the property out of Probate as well so this got me very interested in understanding how real estate works and why these kinds of things happen,” Michael recounts.
Though this incident was troublesome for Michael, as he worried that something would happen to his grandmother’s house, it also got him incredibly excited and motivated to learn more about the real estate game. He wanted to know all the ins and outs of the business.
“Within a few months I managed to begin rehab on my grandmother’s property and purchase another property just up the street for $55,000 which I decided to manage the rehab on as well. I realized that these properties were in the path of gentrification and so I decided to make sure that I took control of what I could in my neighborhood and use it in a way that would set up a solid financial future for my family. I started listing my grandmother’s property on AirBNB while I rehabbed the property up the street. It was making great money at $325/night while appreciating in value due to the fact that the neighborhood was changing so quickly. The second property rehab was taking a while but I knew it would be very valuable because of the quality of rehab and the improvement of the neighborhood. I would go on to put in $110,000 into the rehab,” Michael explains.
Despite his love for the business, Michael was finding that his current tactics were not sustainable. He was losing lots of money and needed to go back to the drawing board to rethink his next steps.
“After sinking much of my own money into these properties I realized very quickly that buying properties this wasn’t sustainable. So I needed to figure out how to get my money back out and quickly. Having already owned a personal property and thinking that I couldn’t own another I approached a family member to see if they could get a mortgage on it. That didn’t work out. I didn’t know of any other options and decided that if I sold these properties, I could use the money to really go all in on real estate. So that’s what I did. After determining how I could multiply my impact with the proceeds, I listed both properties,” Michael states.
Michael was finally able to find his stride! He realized what he needed to do to achieve success and has done so incredibly well.
“I sold both properties very quickly. The property I purchased and rehabbed for $165,000, sold in less than 24hrs for $325,000 and my grandmother’s sold at $215,000 and I hit the ground running.
Real Estate helped me to realize that my early years in the streets forced me to develop an unique ability of managing risk effectively even in a fast-paced environment. It might sound crazy but when you come from an environment where mismanaging risk could mean loss of freedom, loss of life or physical harm you learn how to navigate risk much differently than most. I think that this experience makes me incredibly unique,” Michael exclaims.
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