Grant Iverson spent roughly four years educating himself about the ins and outs of property investment, spending about $100,000 on classes and different resources, but even the most seasoned investors will tell you that you don’t necessarily have to spend too much time and money to succeed in the wealth-creation business.
Quite understandably, Grant wanted to know as much as he could before stepping into the venture, which is regarded as risky and unpredictable.
According to him: “I wanted to learn to renovate, so I had to [go to renovation classes] … I wanted to learn how to do property development, so I went to property development courses.”
“They're the kind of things that I really wanted to … For me, it was like a university. I had a choice of going into a university course or picking the courses that I really [was] interested [in],” he added.
Basically, he did his “own MBA” by educating himself on the aspects of property investment that he’s most interested in. He, like many budding investors, wanted to arm himself with the knowledge and tools he needed to be able to do what he wants to do in the future.
While the investment in education did come with a hefty price tag, Grant said he did not regret going through every single course he did.
He said: “If someone said to me, ‘What do you think would be the best way forward?’ My personal opinion would be, ‘Invest in your own education first.’ ”
Like investing in properties, spending money on education must also be done wisely, especially if you’re looking to save up for deposit or improve your serviceability for the moment you start creating your portfolio. Some of the free resources include podcasts and websites that offer financial advice from property professionals.
Besides, trying to learn everything you need to know could be counterproductive and may even lead to “analysis paralysis”.
Smart Property Investment’s Phil Tarrant said: “Invest in your education—I wholeheartedly agree—but don't over-invest in your education [that] you get to a point where you're procrastinating on every single decision.”
Grant personally missed a few opportunities while he was stuck on the stage of educating himself. Aside from some auctions, he also missed the good cycle in Newcastle, where he initially wanted to buy his first investment property.
Thankfully, he found mentors and property professionals that pointed him to the right path and essentially made the whole process “less lonely”. In the beginning, his ego pushed him to do everything by himself, but later on, he found out that a good financial team not only makes it easier to succeed but also makes the journey more enjoyable.
It certainly opened up more opportunities for him and made him see property investment through different, enlightening perspectives.
He explained: “You like to have the opportunity to discuss what you've seen. We're human. We like to get a second opinion."
“I [became] so obsessed. I was really looking for that one property that was going to set me up for the rest of my life … [but there] really just wasn't.
“There's [an] opportunity every weekend in the market. There's stuff out there that, whether I might not like it, someone else likes it and they'll do something completely different and they'll make money from that,” the property investor added.
At the end of the day, you don’t have to learn everything there is to know about property investment because aside from being nearly impossible, it could also hinder your decision-making.
You’ve got to look at it “more holistically”, according to Grant.
He said: “[Different courses recommend different strategies so] you're constantly challenging yourself [by] being too specific. If you looked at it more holistically and said, ‘Well, that's great. I can renovate on this and maybe, down the track, I can develop … ’ you're combining the education.”
His advice to budding property investors: Find mentors and build a financial team who will work to understand your goals, capabilities, and limitations in order to help you make the best decisions and ultimately achieve your goals.
Phil, who is an avid investor himself, also advocates for finding a good and reliable financial team, which he believes would work best partnered with self-education.
According to him: “It's less lonely … if you've got people on your side who are advocating for you, [but] … you've gotta be careful of whose advice you listen to.”
“You need to be educated enough to be able to challenge the ideas … [Having a financial team] doesn't mean you completely outsource … responsibility … They're there to help you, but you're still responsible,” he concluded.
Tune into Grant Iverson’s episode on The Smart Property Investment Show to know more about the challenges he faced throughout his property investment journey, including facing banks and his 12-month unemployment period, and how he and his partner overcame these obstacles.