Should You Try To Be Debt-Free At 53?

Re: Debt-free at 53?

I had a really interesting meeting this week.

The kind of conversation that challenges the brain and really got me thinking.

I asked the person I met with if they would mind if I shared some of the conversation details with our WREIA members.

Lucky you – the answer was “Sure”.

We sat down to talk and rather quickly I got hit with this question:

“I want to be debt free at 53. Can you help me do that?”

We went on to have a good conversation about income and debt levels, future expectations, etc.

But it was the answer to my immediate response really hit me. Their answer told me more than anything else about how successful this person was going to be in their quest to be “Debt-Free By 53”.

My response was simply – “Why?”

The motivation or purpose you bring to the quest is more important than the how.

I’ve noticed over the last 20 years that people who have a big reason to accomplish their task or goal will often accomplish it.

Maybe you’ve heard the expression “Come Hell Or High Water”?

It’s used to explain an undertaking that, no matter how bad it gets, or what conditions we face – it’s going to happen.

That level of intense and focused energy when undertaking a project turns any roadblocks into mere speed-bumps along your journey.

That was the fire I saw when we were talking.

At the very basic levels using real estate in the 3 step process to become debt free is very easy.

Step 1. Spend Less.
Step 2. Save More.
Step 3. Earn More.

That third step is where people often mess up.

That was also why we were having our conversation. This person wanted to earn more along the way. Spending less and saving more wasn’t going to let them get ahead fast enough to reach the goal of being debt free on their timeline.

So many people think that they have to live like a poor person so they can “enjoy” their retirement years.

I wonder if depriving yourself your entire life is really a great “plan”?

Putting off all of your enjoyment now, just so you can continue to play it safe in retirement seems silly.

Life is meant to be lived.

There are so many wonderful places to see and people to meet all over the world – why would you put that off and starve yourself of those adventures and pleasures until you are “retired”?

Maybe world travel isn’t your ultimate goal, that’s fine.

But what is your ultimate goal?

Why not start enjoying it sooner, rather than waiting for some artificial age when it’s “more appropriate”.

The one thing I can tell you – real estate has allowed me to enjoy life along the way, as well as plan for the future.

I’ve also seen people go from near bankruptcy to multi-millionaires in as little as 3 years. Another in just over 5 years.

We are talking regular people – not Harvard educated MBA’s with a crazy network of high-earners who strike it rich when their company goes “public”.

That rapid rise in wealth came down to this – the luck of living in a country where it’s possible, coupled with hard work and determination.

They determined they would do it – and they did.

At WREIA next Monday we will wrap up 2017. (We take off December to spend time with family, friends and “sharpen the sword” for ourselves.)

I hope you can join us on Monday at our WREIA meeting as we discuss our favorite topics of the year and go over some of the common characteristics the successful people in our field share and how it helps them achieve their goals.

The easiest way I know to achieve your own success is to emulate those people who are already successful.

Come out and spend some time networking with other investors in the DC area. Enjoy a bite to eat and share your goals for 2018.

2018 is right around the corner. I still can’t believe it.

Are you ready for 2018?

What are you going to do to have even more success next year?

Join us on Monday and hear what other people are doing to expand and grow their business in the months ahead.

Reserve your seat at this link.

See you Monday!

John Peterson
Founder, Washington Real Estate Investors Association