My profile consists of someone who was born poor in Oklahoma, a place where people who are poor are actually poor, an oddity for America.
I honed business skills from my grandmother who was herself a successful real-estate business woman.
I learned to be shrewd and protective of every last cent I had from an early age, and suspicious of others when money was involved.
I also learned carpentry, roofing and other skills when I was young as we could not afford for other people to do repairs.
I was taught 'if you are looking for a helping hand, look at the end of your [expletive] arm.'
Both parents died when I was young. At the age of 22 I purchased my first home and sold it 7 months later for a 19,000 dollar profit. I used ingenuity and 'street smarts' in order to save enough money for the down payment.
I repeated this for a profit of 14,000 dollars within the next year.
Having achieved success I set my sights higher (perhaps a little too high) and purchased a 4 unit apartment complex with a huge down payment and a loan.
I invested my own funds, time and literal sweat equity. Originally only 3 units were livable, when I finished all 4 were livable and rented out.
This came at considerable cost to me both financially and otherwise as I was working a full time job at the time also.
I spent the last of what I had renovating another room so I could raise rent.
Shortly thereafter I lost my job during the recession. I was broke with no job and an apartment complex to attend to.
I refused to go on unemployment. Instead I lived off the money I made from rent instead of paying my loan back.
I tried to sell it several times but by this time the real estate 'bubble' had burst and I had not gotten out in time.
Needless to say, I am no longer the owner of this apartment complex and I am in dire financial straits.
If you have read this far then you know that that won't stop me. I'm 27 now and wiser.
Indeed, I have suffered through many things that would have brought lesser men to their knees.
I have also suffered a divorce through this whole thing.
But ALAS! I have a plan. My plan is on track and I will re-emerge. I am here to seek guidance and advice from others that I was too immature or stubborn (I see that now) to seek previously.
Everyone fails in life at times, but only a failure quits or gives up. In this manner I will make even wiser choices this next go-round and make myself independently wealthy. I'm not the young kid I was fighting the world (as i viewed it at the time). You may think that only being 27 (almost 28) means that Im immature or stupid but I promise you that I have more life experience in my little finger than most people twice my age.
I'm older and I realize now that while I have had successes that most may never know in their life (are you kidding me? for a poor kid to have almost 40 thousand in the bank at one time is huge), I have also had failure that most will never know... I am not invincible and real failure can creep in if I make wreck-less decisions or try to peak too soon or "bite off more than I can chew".
I will use this realization to my advantage, as an edge that others don't have. While others are being frantic and flashy i'll slow down and put a focus on planning and realization.
I have completely transformed my life and am on track to saving money again.
My goal is to have a substantial amount within 5 years and meet other like-minded people with wealth and pool our money and then purchase successful businesses without the need for a loan.
From what I have read, you folks call this "private equity" but I have called the idea "pooling money" and have had this idea long before I researched who Mitt Romney was. It is my next step (after I acquire more money of course - a task in and of itself), and my goal to become independently wealthy.
The money we "pool" will most likely be invested to successful multi-family real-estate. Why you ask? after all I have failed once in this endeavor?? It is PRECISELY because I have failed that I will attack it with more wisdom in the future.
I have another business idea with low start up costs that we may look at as well, but first things first, I'm going to get back on my feet if its the last thing I do and then plot my rise.
In any event, my name is Dustin and I'm here to ask for advice from time to time, so I appreciate any and all comments you might have!