I have discovered during my life time that the most powerful way to learn anything is to experience it for myself. I found that a textbook or explanation was never as good as a practical demonstration, preferably with me involved in the activity.
As a teenager, I had decided to become a mining engineer – this was the highest paying job I could find in the newspaper when I was a kid at school. Since I wanted to be rich I knew I would need the most money I could earn, so that I could begin to invest in property. That meant moving from Perth to Kalgoorlie and studying at the School of Mines. I don’t remember a lot about those days, I was young and a bit foolish, away from home and discovering life.
I do remember a mystifying lesson I had which involved drill and blast patterns. Basically we were being taught how the miners firstly drilled holes in a certain way in to solid rock and then packed them with explosives, timed to blow at certain intervals, in such a way as to ensure the rock would expand and blow out, making a new tunnel, rather than expanding and freezing in place. I just couldn’t get my head around how it worked. However, when I saw this process in real life during work experience underground in the mines and even helped the miners charge up the face, the actual process became obvious to me.
You see, the most important thing was that a hole in the centre was left empty and the first explosive to go off was right next to that. The rock would expand in to the empty space, making a larger hole, that then next explosive could blow into, and so on, until a new tunnel was created and the rock pieces could be gathered up, taken away and the process repeated. In the doing, I received the knowing.
Recently, my wife’s bike had a puncture. In trying to bank up some brownie points, I removed the wheel and took it up to the bike shop for repair. On returning home, I had quite the job trying to force the tire & wheel back in to place – with the brake caliper being so tight that I really had a challenge getting it all back together. Eventually after thirty sweat soaked & knuckle grazing minutes, I managed to get everything back in place. Only to find that the brake calipers were gripping on the rim and slowing the bike down as I test rode it down the street. My wife dutifully put up with this dragging inconvenience for about a week and any chance of those brownie points remaining in the bank disappeared. I tried and tried to figure out how to fix it however it was simply beyond my knowledge.
I finally resorted to dragging the bike back up to the bike shop and sheepishly asking the bloke behind the counter if he could help. I had packed a book and a drink, thinking it would likely take an hour or two to fix such a difficult issue as brakes and calipers and dragging gripping. He smiled at me and said “sure!” leaned down and flicked some kind of switch, which released something else and it less than then seconds, the whole brake caliper thing was operating as normal. I spluttered “that’s all? that’s it?” He just smiled and said, “been doing this a while now, it’s just what I know.”
You can read all you like about investing in real estate, attend every seminar or event held, talk to your friends or associates around the BBQ about the market, however you won’t really know about property investing until such time as you do property investing.
The ways to do property investing are changing and evolving as time progresses. Many people will need to rent the home they live in and invest in an area they can afford to own in. Others will be truly challenged to own any property at all. Many will gravitate towards crowdfunding and syndicates as a way to build capital or create investment income.
And in the doing, will come the knowing. When you have been doing it a while, it should become as simple as finding the right switch to flick, if all goes well. And if it doesn’t reach that point for you or you feel the need to continue your learning journey, find people you can trust who have been doing it a while and know about what they are doing.
It could save you a lot of time and likely your money as well.