Cash Flow With Joe

Monsters don’t live in the bathroom

Monsters don’t live in the bathroom

I was a guest on podcast recently with my mentor Bill Cook where we were discussing things that hinder the success of newer investors.


As we talked, Bill asked me if I thought a lack of education is something that stops newbies from moving forward. I told him I didn’t think so. You see, there’s a ton of information out there about how to make deals in real estate. You can read blogs, go to sites like Bigger Pockets, watch YouTubes and then go to your local real estate investor association (REIA) to get education and to find seminars to attend.


I’ve even known people who attend several classes and never do a deal. You’ll see them at every seminar, and they can tell you about things like forming an LLC, what a subject-to deal is and how to structure a lease. But when you ask them about how their current deals are going, they get a little quiet and then admit that they still haven’t done a deal.


“Why is that?” Bill asked.


I told him I thought it was inaction that is ultimately caused by fear.


In Proverbs 14:23 it says, “In all labor there is profit, but talk of lips leads only to poverty.” You see, you can’t just take the classes and then talk about being an investor. You become one by taking what you learned in those classes and putting it into action. To put it a different way, I have heard it said that education without application equals frustration. And a lot of newer investors don’t put things into action because of fear.


That reminded me of how it felt when my wife Ashley and I were newbies to real estate investing. You see, we were two broke kids, straight out of school with a mound of student debt and no verifiable income. Because of that, we had no chance of getting a mortgage to buy a home, much less a loan for an investment property.


But we knew we had to find a way to acquire rental properties so that we could be financially free. So, we spent multiple days each week door-knocking the pre-foreclosures, hoping to find a deal that didn’t require us to have a ton of money. But every time we went to the door, fear would set in, and questions would arise such as: What if somebody’s home? What if they invite us in? What if we make an offer? What if they decline the offer? What if they accept? How the heck are we going to fund a deal?


I told Bill we were scared to death. We had both the fear of failure, as well as the fear of success because we didn’t know how to get the money to buy a house if someone accepted our offer.


Bill, who is an avid door knocker, talked about fear that he sees regularly when he takes a group door knocking. Before they start, Bill likes to ask the people what they think is going to happen. They express they think they might get yelled at, have doors slammed in their face, or have the cops called on them. Bill said this is all fear based and is just not so. He points out he has door knocked in major cities all over the United States and has never experienced any of those issues. He said the things that are holding them back aren’t real.


I asked him if he knew what fear stood for. He didn’t. So I explained that F.E.A.R. is an acronym that stands for False Evidence Appearing Real. And most of the time, the fear that is holding you back from success is just that, False Evidence Appearing Real.


Here is an example of that:


Currently, I’m sleeping in the bedroom with my three-year-old because Ashley has to take care of the baby — and I wasn’t endowed with the necessary equipment to do so, i.e., I don’t produce milk.


Well, my 3-year-old’s room has a door to the jack and jill common bath in it. And as we were dozing off to sleep one night, someone went in there, turned on the light and I assume the cat ran in and made a ruckus. He popped up and in a scared little voice said, “Dad! There’s a monster in there!”


I asked him what was on the other side of that door. He replied that it was the bathroom. Then I asked him if monsters live in the bathroom. He thought about that for a half a second and replied “No.”


I literally watched the alarm melt from his face. He then laid down his head and went to sleep peacefully.


This is a great example of how knowing what is on the other side of a door can help you have peace. You see, when you go door knocking, sellers live on the other side of the door. They are people, not monsters, and they need your help solving their real estate problems.


If you can focus on that fact, then the F.E.A.R. will melt away. And the end result is your success rate will go through the roof.


So next time you go to a sellers door, just remember, monsters don’t live in the bathroom.


Joe and Ashley English buy houses and mobile homes in Northwest Georgia. For more information or to ask a question, go to or call Joe at 678-986-6813.

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