Table of Contents - Investing since 1977…Sage Advice from Ross Lightle
Dave Debeau [00:00:08] Well, hey, everyone, this is Dave Debeau with another episode of the Property Profits Real Estate podcast today. It is my pleasure to be interviewing a very, very accomplished, well known and successful real estate entrepreneur, a gentleman that I've known of for many, many years. And I've had the pleasure of knowing for several years as well. And that is Mr. Ross Lytle. Ross, how are you doing today, my friend?
Ross Lightle [00:00:34] I'm doing great, Dave. Glad to be here. How are you doing?
Dave Debeau [00:00:37] I am fantastic. I'm fantastic. So cross it kind of blew my mind when you sent me some information prior to our call. But you've been investing in real estate since nineteen seventy seven or was that a typo.
Ross Lightle [00:00:52] Yeah, I'm at two thousand and seventeen days. You can tell by the growth of my hair. No 1977. Can you believe that one or two years ago. Where did it go.
Dave Debeau [00:01:08] Exactly. Exactly my friend, when you're doing a hell of a lot better and the hair department than some of us.
Ross Lightle [00:01:13] So let's not that's not going to be enough to beat the real estate business. We're actually there. Yeah. Let's work together. Let's go.
Dave Debeau [00:01:23] That's better. So, Ross, if you can remember way back to nineteen seventy seven, what the heck sparked you to get into real estate investing way back then?
Ross Lightle [00:01:33] Well, I really didn't decide to get into real estate. The truth be known, I just did what my mother told me to do and she said, you know, Rossignol make them more manageable by land. And she had her eye on his 28 years of financial investment. And bottom line at the time I was making. Three dollars an hour is the economy maker Apprentice, and in roughly 20 hours, I need eighty thousand dollars on the real estate deal that she suggested I do. So real estate has an instant appeal to me. I didn't have to be in charge of making that.
Dave Debeau [00:02:08] Very nice. Very nice. So over that time, I know you've done a variety of different real estate investing strategies, but what what's kind of your main thing? What do you like to focus on the most?
Ross Lightle [00:02:22] Well, I've become known for rent to own simply because really rent to own has three main appeal, have money at the beginning, as you know, money as you go through the deal and then money as it closes. And and any business cash flow is a critical element of the business. And rent don't give you cash flow all the way through. It's also something that works in any market, whether it's up market, down market that Martin doesn't matter. And that's been the criticism I've been through, you know, for major recessions over my career. Never let a good recession go by without you making money on it. And that's why we're heavily investing in Calgary and in the game and doing right on there. And so I've also become known as a thought leader and a leader in the restaurant industry right across the country, actually, and even down in the US. So that's been sort of something I've been known for, something that I've done. You know, I've done everything from areas to land management, a whole gamut. But rental, something I focus on now.
Dave Debeau [00:03:31] All right. Very good. So obviously, we can't get into the in-depth nitty gritty of how to do RedZone here. But most people think of Renton being a good strategy in a rising market. You're talking about it even working in a flat market or declining market. Just in a nutshell, how can you make rent? Don't work in those kind of markets.
Ross Lightle [00:03:54] Well, you've heard the old saying buy low, sell high. Now, that works in the bond market as well. Actually, we probably get more clients in a down market day than we do in the stock market. The hot market. You got to think people are maybe not. They don't need our services as much because what we really do and what all investors do is we saw from. That's what we do. And rent to home. I had a friend said to me one time, you know, lots of you had rent own the end of any real estate deal. You make it better. In other words, you put it off at the end of the real estate deal better. So in the down market, we usually are even even busier.
Dave Debeau [00:04:38] Right. We got a lot more motivated sellers in a down market, that's for sure.
Ross Lightle [00:04:42] A lot more motivated sellers and a lot more people. Most of my deals. My rent deals, baby. No, I don't buy them. The owners just give me the properties. Right. They're far more willing to give me properties in the down market than I know.
Dave Debeau [00:04:55] That makes sense. So it's a matter of getting in on a good deal and then so getting it at a lower price, a lower price so that you can sell it at a lower price if you're still in a low market. Right?
Ross Lightle [00:05:08] Basically, yeah. I mean, it's what I'm striving for is about a thousand dollars a month. So I'm doing a three year option, which is my most common. I want to make a minimum of thirty six thousand. I normally make closer to 50, but I, I'm usually making at least a thousand a month on the whole deal between my initial money, my ongoing money and my own money. So, you know, when you think about how I look to the rent to own deals with the other before your nice little lifestyle.
Dave Debeau [00:05:39] Oh yeah. Most definitely. Most definitely. So Ross, sounds like you did pretty well on your very first deal way, way back in seventy seven. I don't imagine it's always been sunshine and roses in the real estate investing business for you that are you're just an absolute genius because everybody I know has had a few stinkers in their lives. So knowing what you know now, what would you tell your younger self? About getting involved in real estate.
Ross Lightle [00:06:08] Well, telling my younger self, I tell my younger self all the time, because the experience is one of those advantages to getting older. One of the leader, you know, we don't get do overs, we don't get do overs, but there is, you know, a lot of things I would do if it took me 20 years before I got my first coach in real estate and in business. And I do that sooner. I struggle a lot thinking, you know, how I can figure out all the answers myself and. You know, it's just not this just not possible, right? Not a thing I would do is I would always invest in the uninvestable. I didn't do that enough when I was younger. And the uninvestable, of course, is always going to invest in my mind and me, except for me. And I would take 10 percent of all my gross income. And I reinvested in the. Another thing I'd probably do is I think that, you know, I was married before, I mean, married now with bar for 28 years, I think that's while probably the best decision I ever made my life is my spouse. And, you know, the little you know, my my first wife. And she's a good person, everything else. I probably didn't spend as much time and carefully thinking about that decision. As I did on my know my second wife farm and my last one, so
Dave Debeau [00:07:45] lack of due diligence, the first time I can relate in there done that,
Ross Lightle [00:07:49] I have done that. Right. Got that. I think I would buy. You know, when you're young, you always want to buy assets and not assets. You want to buy the luxury things. And I think I would do I take a page. The key is that, you know, I worked with for years. And around his company up here in Canada, he said, buy the assets and let the asset buy the unnecessary luxuries, the doodads, I would do that more for sure. I would think bigger days, maybe because I grew up poor and I was on the farm. I don't want to make excuses, but I would think bigger. I would understand sooner that every business is first and foremost a people business. I didn't I always thought it was about the product. And as I got older, I realized it's all about relationships and of all the people. And here's a big one. I'm just trying to think off my head right now. But, you know, I would learn to say no more. I wouldn't chase the squirrel know saying because yes is really easy to say. No hard. Yeah. But really by only saying no to a lot of the things that I can focus on, the things that really matter, the things that will make me a world class because I can be world class and everything. You know, like you said earlier, you know, regular. Yeah, I do a lot of time to be the best that there is and rent on. And I really believe I am the best there is. And that's not me, Ragman. I just know that a lot of people that have come in there and all, you know, done on my training and on my teachings and and we're continually making that better, of course. So I would focus on, you know, fewer things and say no than a lot. I'd give up listener. I mean, I haven't had TV for 12 years, 13 years now. I would have I make my list sooner and I'd give up on a lot of things so I can focus on the things that really matter. I would learn to lead and delegate the low leverage activities. That don't produce significant results, I get rid of them and certainly they. Network more and now with this, the social media and even the platform that you're using right now, there's no reason that people can't network more than we were able to do when we first started. We do.
Dave Debeau [00:10:11] I would say, yeah, it's it's a slightly different animal, but definitely a fair.
Ross Lightle [00:10:15] Yeah. I mean, it's all about personal things. I would certainly tie for. Yeah. And I would probably here's one thing I would do is I was on the road when I was building the business, you know, and I'm doing all that. So in Canada I was on the road two hundred days a year. And looking back now, I would certainly far more energy into my life and my kids or more energy in their lives. So, you know, some of the things I most certainly do looking and telling my younger self, as you say,
Dave Debeau [00:10:46] well, good, good, thanks for sharing that, that some valuable stuff. Now, let's switch gears a little bit here, Ross. I know you've got a lot of different skill sets, especially with all these years of experience. But if you had to boil it down, what do you think would be your quote unquote, acquiring Kiyosaki and your unfair advantage, your superpower, as it were, when it comes to real estate? Yes, I think I know what it is, but my my version of your superpower and yours might be different. So let's hear yours first.
Ross Lightle [00:11:19] That's interesting for you to say, because I think other people always look at you differently. You look at yourself. But one of the things that that's helped me a lot in my real estate business is my ability to analyze a deal. OK, I'm really good at looking at the numbers. I'm really good at building relationships and I'm really good at negotiating the deal. Finding the solution that best works for all parties. So A are the three things that lies in building relationships and negotiating a deal. I would say to my my three superpowers, if you will.
Dave Debeau [00:11:54] All right. I dolin on the middle one. I'm sure the other two are very, very valuable. But Ross, you are the only guy on planet Earth that I know that has the discipline to do what you do every morning. So I don't want to let the cat out of the bag. But do you mind sharing with our listeners who are watching what your success habit has been and how long you've been doing it for?
Ross Lightle [00:12:17] Over the last 20 years, I've been building what the relationships by making at least three to five phone calls every morning. I didn't say three to five emails or three to five, you know, taxes. I said three to five phone calls. I want to build those relationships and keep in touch with people. And I've got a system for doing that. And one day I'll share that with you that you started with top of this talk down. That's not the way I do it because. If somebody comes to my mind. Like, let's say the most often one like I wouldn't hesitate to this day just right now, because a lot of times I know this will get on the phone. I can't believe you call me. I was just thinking about you. Not weird, but three to five phone calls a day. Now I get an answering machine. I'll leave a message and I don't get anything. I'll I'll send out a text answer or send an email. Maybe it has something that I think will be of value, something that, you know, an article I wrote or an article I found or something that I think will be my new spreadsheets, you know, because the world is building Arsenal, a massive arsenal that I share with my clients. Yeah, that's pretty cool. And you won't believe how horrible that is to
Dave Debeau [00:13:42] go about doing that, because nobody else I know does that that consistently for that long. So what's what's a couple of examples that just popped in your mind of good stuff that's happened because of that?
Ross Lightle [00:13:54] Well, a lot of deals have happened that way because people have maybe they've lost touch with you or the they haven't been thinking about you and they'll say, you know what, Ross, I've got a deal coming up here. Matter of fact, it was it just this past week, I told the realtor that I haven't been in touch with for a long time. We actually do our construction company. We did we did as all kind of lost touch with them because I worked with a lot of realtors. This is one I had worked with. And he said, Now I'm glad you found I I've got this deal. I'll be right up your alley. It's a deal we can fix up, then we can rent to own it. And it's in a slower market. And that was just this past week, somebody on the phone on one of these three to five calls I do every day, that's another thing that you should know. I'm very disciplined. I work on good hands. I just I'm habitual. I run my life with good habits. Nice when I don't have to think good,
Dave Debeau [00:14:54] productive and profitable habit that calls a day. Yeah. No, that's that's fantastic. All right. Well, we're running out of time here, Ross, because we always have a lot of fun when we're we're having a chat and time flies. But if people want to find out more about Ross Lytle and what you do and how you help real estate investors out, what can they do?
Ross Lightle [00:15:13] Well, the best thing I could say is go to our website w w w dot rich with Ross dot com and it talks a lot about, you know, who I am and what I believe and talks about the the different courses that we offer and the different trainings and and that sort of thing. So I would say that's the best. You know, and then you could always get in touch with us directly from there, you know, only directly, I'm always willing to ask the pope.
Dave Debeau [00:15:45] Very good. Sounds like a pretty damn good on the phone, so.
Ross Lightle [00:15:48] Yeah, well, I want to help, you know, I mean, that's my my deal, my my dealings with the server. You're going to be I always make time if I'm in a meeting or I'm watching right then or I'm doing something, I will always call back.
Dave Debeau [00:16:03] Very good, Ross, thank you very much for your time on the podcast today. It's been a real pleasure and thanks for reminding me again about that success that you've got. It's it's inspirational
Ross Lightle [00:16:15] and we need to get together more than just awesome. Thank you so much.
Dave Debeau [00:16:18] All right, my friend, everybody else, thanks very much for joining in. And we'll see you on the next episode. Take care of. Well, thanks very much for checking out the property profits podcast and you like what we're doing here. Please head on over to iTunes, subscribe read us and leave us to review it. Very, very much appreciated. And if you're looking to create a regular flow of inbound investor inquiries about your real estate deals, then I invite you to attend one of my upcoming live online demonstrations. And you can check that out at Investor Attraction Demo Dotcom Ticker.