Table of Contents - Paycheque to Paycheque To Financial Freedom with Gary Hibbert
George El-Masri [00:00:00] Welcome to another episode of the Well Off podcast, I interviewed Gary Hibbert, smart home choice realtor and investor out in the Durham region. It was a really cool interview. I got to learn a lot about him that I didn't actually understand. So he he was living paycheck to paycheck at one point working corporate job with TD Bank, and he ended up quitting his job. At one point he learned from Tom and Nick from Rockstar Real Estate how to do rent to own. And he was able to build a portfolio that way at this point. Now he's got about 15 properties. So he liquidated some of his homes in order to have cash available to do private mortgages and basically live off the cash flow that his investments produce. So just to put in perspective, you can get typically somewhere between eight to 12 percent annual returns by loaning out money that you have access to, even if it's in our Espy's as a mortgage. And in doing so, he can live off the funds that he's making. So just a really cool strategy. I never really heard of anyone doing it the way he described. And I think you're really enjoying this episode. So have a listen. Let me know what you think. Leave a comment. Leave a review on iTunes, if you can. I would appreciate that. And as always, if you know anyone looking to invest, I'm specifically interested in working with beginner investors that are looking in Hamilton, maybe even like Brantford. Wilander saying, Catherines, I'd love to work with them. I do host property tours as well. So keep me in mind. Reach out to me directly if you know anyone, maybe even give me their name and number and I'll be happy to work with them. So thank you very much. Enjoy the show. Welcome to the Wealth podcast, where the goal is to motivate, inspire and share success principles. And today I'm here with Gary Hibbert, who's a full time real estate investor, licensed and award winning real estate agent, also an educator. In 2008, he made a decision that would be life changing. He purchased his first investment property and through hard work and dedication, he was able to leave the corporate world to become a full time entrepreneur. Today, he has close to 30 investment properties. So we'll be diving into that. And just so you guys know, when Gary first started, he live paycheck to paycheck, as many other people do. And through some of the decisions that he's he's made in the last couple of years, he's been able to transform his life. So, Gary, welcome to the show.
Gary Hibbert [00:02:18] Hey, George, listen, thank you very much for for having me on the show. Definitely excited to be here just in regards to 30, 30 properties that I own. So I've owned and operated 30 properties, but I'm actually down to around 15 or 16. So just in case anybody wants to do any fact checking on me.
George El-Masri [00:02:34] OK, fair enough. Fair enough. So the way that I like to start off the show here is by asking you about your childhood talent. If you can just tell me about where you grew up and some of the things you remember as a child.
Gary Hibbert [00:02:48] Oh, wow. We're going way back. OK, cool. So for a childhood, I mean, I originally was I was born in Toronto and from there I moved out to to Oshawa, live there for about maybe 10 years or so. And then we moved to Curtis. And so I lived in Curtis for a number of years and I hated it, OK, because it was like out in the middle of nowhere. And I mean, things have changed now on Curtis. But when I first moved out there, it was just it was cows and and farmer's fields and very, very rural. But you know what? Looking back at it, though, is probably one of the best things I think that my my parents did for me, because it allowed me to use my imagination. I loved looking up at the stars and I had a telescope and it allowed me to really kind of just live in a very kind of a quiet, secluded environment. And and when you look up at the stars at night, especially out in Kurdish, because you don't get that satellite really allows you to dream big. And and that's what I was doing when I was out there. And so I think at an early age, you know, we'll I guess we'll see late teens is when I really kind of got the the inspiration that I really wanted to do something big with my life. The thing was, is that, you know, I ended up meeting my wife that I have today and, you know, at around 19 or so. And then shortly afterwards, we had our son. And so I had to now get the ball rolling with getting a good job because working at Kintyre back then and I was able to get into the TD Bank, and that was when I realized I'd always heard this before. But your your network is how important it is. And so I handled like tons of resumes and I didn't get any jobs, but I went to a friend and asked him and he's like, yeah, I just got the TV, I can get you in there. And he got me in and you know, I got to the corporate world. And when you're in that corporate world, it's really hard to get out of it. And the paycheck was great and it allowed us to, you know, get our first condo or property in Toronto. But I got caught up in that whole rat race and I was in it for a number of years. And I forgotten about the dreams that I had when I was when I was younger.
George El-Masri [00:05:06] Yeah. Well, good for you for getting out of there at this point.
Gary Hibbert [00:05:08] Yeah. Yeah, I woke up eventually. Yeah.
George El-Masri [00:05:11] I want to touch on something which is kind of like a sensitive topic, but I had a friend of mine who's also a realtor and she said that similar story. She grew up in Toronto and she moved out, I forget to what city was somewhere out rural. She she was picked on a lot because she was black, basically. Yeah. And she would tell me all the stories of her, like being the only black person in the in her grade or in her school. Was that was that something that you also experienced?
Gary Hibbert [00:05:38] Yeah. Yeah. There weren't many black people that were where I was when I was in Curtis, you know, and I remember when I went to high school, I think it was like one other black guy. Yeah, I was there. But, you know, but the good thing was that when I first moved out there, I used to play for a soccer team. And so some of my some of the players that were on the team with me, they actually went to school. And Curtis. So when I got there, I actually had some friends, which was good. So that kind of, you know, fostered a good relationship there. But I didn't really get picked on a lot because of my college. I was just a couple of things here and there, but it definitely wasn't anything where I'd say I was traumatized by it. Right. Right. And then I think around maybe grade 11 or so, then it was like this influx of a number of different black families that moved in. And then we had the best basketball team ever. We were dunking, we're going to Hafsa and. Yeah, and all of that. But yeah. Yeah. There wasn't really a lot of, you know, I guess different different ethnicities.
George El-Masri [00:06:42] Yeah, but that's good to hear. That's that's props to Kurtis for for being that place that was good to people of different ethnicities.
Gary Hibbert [00:06:49] Yeah. Yeah, exactly. So it's good. Yeah.
George El-Masri [00:06:51] Good to hear. Yeah. OK, so you talked, you told us a bit about your your journey having a good corporate job working with TD Bank. I'm assuming at that point you were living paycheck to paycheck, is that right? Yeah, I was, yeah. So you bought your condo in Toronto? Yep. You have probably a fair sized mortgage.
Gary Hibbert [00:07:08] Yeah, well I mean, I guess at the time. But now I look back at it, you know, the mortgage is like one hundred and I don't know, ten thousand buy the kind of like one twenty five percent. That's awesome. Yeah. But it was still tight.
George El-Masri [00:07:21] Yeah. It was still tight.
Gary Hibbert [00:07:22] Yeah. I remember there was times where you know, we'd get home and we're like not much food left in the fridge. My son would be like, you know, in his, in his last diaper and we'd go to the bank account and be like there's no money in there. And back then we used to have overdraft. So we'd be like we'd always be living in the rent like negative 200 or negative 300. And then I would go to the mailbox to to get the mail and there'd be like a GST check in there for like eighty seven. I, I'm like, oh thank God. And that is literally how we lived for years. It was always in the red. And even when I was at Tee'd because I remember when I first started, I was only making like I think twenty five, twenty six at the time was great money. Yeah. Yeah. And then after that I got a raise because I went into the operations department and the range is like almost ten now, like it was, it was good money. And so we were, I was climbing up fairly quickly. Yeah. But the weird thing was it was still paycheck to paycheck. Yeah. You know, it was, it was a crazy thing. And I guess while we're on the subject as well too, is that I think what I didn't understand was the impact of inflation and and how how was so detrimental to, you know, to our incomes, because inflation, even though you may see a particular number of it saying, like, you know, two and a half or three percent when you really take a look at it and what some of the real numbers are, as far as I'm concerned, especially when you were living here in Toronto, the inflation was a lot higher than that. And and it took a while for me to kind of figure that out. Right.
George El-Masri [00:08:53] Right. When you so the situation that you were in, that comes from somewhere, there's a reason that you believe that that's how life was lived, that you would live paycheck to paycheck, something somewhere, somehow along the way you saw that. That's how most people are living and you live that sort of life. Said, you know where that came from for you,
Gary Hibbert [00:09:14] that paycheck to paycheck. Kind of. Yeah.
George El-Masri [00:09:16] Like y y you were living that lifestyle instead of living like how some certain people live, saving money and investing and whatnot.
Gary Hibbert [00:09:24] Yeah, yeah. I mean, look, I did have some savings, you know, but it was it was, it was a dorm in the dorm was at least what I was told when I was growing up was to go to school, get an education and get a good job. Know nobody told me to invest in real estate. I saw some of the stuff on television, but it was never really taught to me. So to me, I thought that this is the way to do it. And and I you know, through TRD, they had some savings programs that you can, you know, contribute to. And then I put a little bit into into our space. Right. That's really what allowed me to buy the condo in the beginning with my with my wife was we put some money into Arizpe. So, you know, we did do some savings, but I knew that it wasn't going to be enough to retire on you at a fairly early age.
George El-Masri [00:10:11] Yeah, that's a scary thought. I just remember you hear that fairly early on, that you should save a million dollars or whatever so you can retire on or not. But for me, that never felt like that was a good thing to aim for. It just didn't make sense to work all my life and make all those sacrifices so I can have a million dollars at the end to to survive on.
Gary Hibbert [00:10:32] Well then. Yeah. And then now. So you got a million dollars at the end. Now you got to do a countdown with this money. Yeah. OK, so I got a million dollars. So this should last for the next 15 years. Right. Right, right.
George El-Masri [00:10:44] And I die by that.
Gary Hibbert [00:10:45] Yeah. Exactly right. And I think, you know, at least for me when I understood that saying, OK, well, hold on a second. What if I you know, people are living longer? What if I run out of money? And at the time, too, in the beginning, a million dollars when you're in your early twenties seems like a whole lot of money.
George El-Masri [00:11:00] And it was more money back then. You talked about inflation, a million dollars forty years from now. What's that really going to be worth?
Gary Hibbert [00:11:08] Exactly, yeah. You got townhomes that are for over a million dollars now. It's just it's not enough. Yeah, you know, it really isn't. So I would say for us when I started to wake up was maybe around the age of thirty five. I want to kind of jump into that now. Yeah, sure. Yeah. So here's what happened for me and I'll kind of like share this story here. This is around maybe say 2007 to 2008 actually when it really happened. And one day I went into work, this is when the crash had just happened to us and everybody was thinking that it was going to happen up here in Canada. But if you remember, it didn't. But I did a bit of a sideways thing and I went into work. It was a Monday. And what it what had happened then was that even though we were getting hit with the real estate market, people were losing their jobs that particular time because people were anticipating that it was going to happen. So Monday rolls around going to work. Typical Monday morning, my own business doing my own thing and saw one of my friends get called in to the to to the manager's office. And he comes out and the he has the infamous pink slip. And I'm like, oh yeah, he sits on. And so all day people were getting called into the office. Yeah. And I remember just like just banging on my keyboard harder thinking that, you know, if they see me working really hard, you're not going to let go of me, you know. But I mean, look, they already had the list. They knew who they were going to get rid of. And so at the end of the day, rolls around and manager comes out and goes, OK, so whoever's left here, you guys are safe. You don't have to worry about it. You guys have your jobs. And I remember driving home and I said to myself, never again do I ever want to feel like somebody has to control my financial freedom or future. The problem was I didn't know what to do and know how to get out of this rat race, you know, this corporate world, and so that is when I started trying a whole bunch of different things. So I started doing forex trading, currency trading. I started doing commodity trading, buying wheat, oil, soybeans and all that stuff I got in the stock market. So I took a course on how to trade stocks and all that. And while I was doing that, I just wasn't making any money. I was actually losing money. And so then I had to go into the bank and this was like the third time I'd gone into the bank to take all of my my debt and and put it into my mortgage. Wow. As a man, thank God I had a house because if it wasn't for this home that I owned, I even know how to get myself out of all this debt. And so now I'm sitting in the office and my financial adviser says, OK, I'm going to go out and print these papers and we're going to do is going to put all your debt in here and we're going to get rid of all your credit cards and all your lines of credit. I'm like, yeah, please do this stuff anymore. I'm done with it. Yeah. So she leaves. And so this is a day that completely changed my whole entire life. So I'm sitting in there and I look up on the wall and I see the index chart. And I don't know if you've ever seen the next chart, but it's a chart where it shows you what the stock market has done for the last 50 years and what interest rates have done for the last 50 years. And and that chart, I saw inflation and I looked at it. I'm like, wow. So over the last 50 years, inflation is anywhere from two to three percent as high as, you know, 14, 15 percent even higher. And then I took a quick calculation of my raise that I got last year at work. And it was like a thousand bucks or something. I was like, whoa, hold on a second. This raises like one point six percent. And if at minimum inflation is doing like two and a half, three percent a year, I get it is mathematically impossible to outpace inflation by having a job and say, well, what if I have one or two of these properties? How could that potentially change my whole entire life? And that was when everything really opened up for me. I was like, okay, I need to get into real estate. Like, I don't it's almost like the matrix, that red pill, blue pill. Once you see it, you can't unsee it. Once you learn it, you can't unlearn it.
George El-Masri [00:15:11] Yeah, that was the first time that you ever thought about owning real estate that moment. No. Well, owning rental real estate, I should say.
Gary Hibbert [00:15:18] I'd actually. Yeah. So let's rewind a little bit. I actually thought about it back in 2001 and it was a friend of mine at work that had an investment property. So I went to him. I say, look, you know, I'm thinking about maybe get into real estate investing and I know you have a property. Should I? And he's like, no, don't do it. It's like risky. Your tenants are going to destroy your home and it is definitely one percent not worth it. And it really goes, yeah, don't do it. I'm thinking about selling mine. So I went home and I told my wife about it. I I'm like a friend at work, told me not to do it. This is way too risky. And then the next day I went back in to work on me. Thank you so much for talking me out of it. It's like I said, don't worry about it, man.
George El-Masri [00:15:57] That's what friends are for. Yeah, well, that's a lesson to not listen to certain people, right. You got to be really careful about who you take advice from.
Gary Hibbert [00:16:06] Absolutely. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Yeah. For sure. Right. You want to take advice from them, from people that are in it that are doing it as opposed to people that are not or
George El-Masri [00:16:14] people who are doing it incorrectly.
Gary Hibbert [00:16:17] Yeah, absolutely right. Yeah exactly. That's what it was just doing it incorrectly. It just kind of do it on his own. He didn't have any, you know, formal training or it wasn't going to like real estate investment groups. I mean, look, I get it back then. It wasn't really a whole lot of that out there either. Right. But, yeah, it was just you learned it on his own. Yeah. And made, I'm sure, tons of mistakes.
George El-Masri [00:16:38] Definitely. Do you know where he's at today? Do you have you been in touch with them at all.
Gary Hibbert [00:16:43] I know he's still at TD. Oh yeah. Yeah. So still
George El-Masri [00:16:46] there. Does he still have that property or. I don't
Gary Hibbert [00:16:48] know. I don't know. He should. I hope he
George El-Masri [00:16:50] does. Yeah. Well I'm sure his opinion would be different now if he still has it. Yeah. Right. Yeah. Yeah. So just a little side note. The first time that I ever thought about real estate investing, I think my mom had mentioned it OK, she said, did you know that you can buy a rental property, have tenants, pay for all of the expenses and basically own it as an as an investment and have it grow over time? Right. And then I just thought, no way. Are you serious? You can actually do that. Like, the tenants will cover everything. Yeah. All of the payments. And then just that was probably when I was like fifteen or sixteen years old and just a bunch of time went by. I didn't do anything about it. But when I think back, I wish I had bought something when I was like sixteen, seventeen, eighteen at some point in that. Yeah. That would have been really awesome. Oh for sure. But everyone says that right. Yeah.
Gary Hibbert [00:17:38] You don't want that. Kind of reminds me up to now I'm thinking back to it. I'll be honest with you. The first time I really heard it, but it was my dad or my dad always talking about it, but he wasn't talking about it in regards to buying real estate like a property. He was like, man, if I had some money, I'd buy some land. And so that early. Concept of like, OK, there's something maybe potentially in man, because he's seeing it going up and up and up and up. Yeah, but it was just more of like, OK, cool. I understand there's something there, but I just didn't know what to do and neither did my dad. Right. Right. Right. Yeah. Because I have had money buy land and you say that like every few years. So I think that kind of stuck with me.
George El-Masri [00:18:18] There's always if then I would. There's always that. But there is always a way. Yes. Yeah. And it's it's incredible. Like it's just the mindset. So that's something that just keeps coming up over and over. What's your mindset towards real estate? How is that shifted over the last couple of years?
Gary Hibbert [00:18:35] My mindset towards real estate. I mean, look, I think it's more my mindset towards life. I think if we have the right mindset that can allow you to do pretty much anything you want. You know, I I've now come to understand and realization that life is just in abundance, but you have to know how to get it. And through mindset is, I think, the most effective way to understand that we're all capable of doing pretty much anything that we want. You know, I did an interview with Lester Brown, probably one of the highlights of my life,
George El-Masri [00:19:09] actually interviewed him.
Gary Hibbert [00:19:10] Yeah, yeah, yes. I interviewed him about maybe two months ago. Wow. That was part of the reason why I end up moving over to that brokerage as well, too, because he kind of dangled this carrot in front of me, say, hey, look, if you come over, we got less brown coming to do a talk to to our group. I mean, that wasn't the only thing. It was a lot of other things. I think the fit was really good. And I was like, I get to interview. And so, yeah, I did a podcast with him, probably one of the again, one of the highlights of my life, one of the scariest things I've actually kind of went through. And he said that eighty five percent is mindset. Fifteen percent skill set. And I truly believe that. I think it might even be higher. Honestly, you know, the skill set stuff, I've heard some people even say that, you know, you really only need a skill set. You just need the mindset and the skills will come along afterwards. Right. But that's one of the first things that I tell anybody is getting the real estate investing is get the mindset stuff, understand that. You know, I was just talking to somebody on the way here and she's like, I want to get into real estate investing. I don't know if I have the income to do it, but I heard you talk a lot about this mindset stuff, and it feels like if I get the right mindset, I can do something. Absolutely you can. Yeah. And she's like, okay, well, I need to meet with him, make sure let's do this. I enjoyed helping other people figure out how they can either do it, whether it's mine or whether it's real estate investing, but at least understand the. There's always a way to do it. There's lots of people have got into it where they don't have the money or they don't have the credit or right. Is it hard work if you don't have 100 percent? It is, but. But you can do it.
George El-Masri [00:20:53] Yeah, I agree with you. And the thing that I realized recently I've been talking to I spoke to two potential investor coaches, which you probably know them. And I just mentioned to them, like, I'm looking to buy five properties next year. So that's my goal. And what do you guys think? And both of them are like, really? That's that's all you're aiming for. They didn't say it like that. But that's just that that they said and I don't have a boatload of cash to do it. But they're just saying if you learn how to raise capital, then that's an easy task for you to do. You're just missing that little piece. So, again, it's just mindset. Believe that you can raise the capital. You don't need to have everything at your disposal right now, but you can figure it out and you can get there.
Gary Hibbert [00:21:37] Yeah, mindset. And then also, too, I don't want people thinking that is just wishful thinking. It was also a lot of hard work that goes along with it as well to. Right. You know, a lot of people will say, oh, well, you know, I've got to the point now where you're lucky and luck is really just when preparation meets opportunity. Right. And so we had the harder work, the luckier I could become. Yeah. Yeah, right. And and so here's one of the things that they always try to tell people to do, and I do this to today is in my office. And as I walk in, there's there's a whiteboard and it has pretty much everything that I want for the year. Oh, my personal stuff on one side and all the business stuff on the other side. And I remember the first year and the first year I did in the second year. Anyways, I wrote then that I wanted for investment properties and as I don't know if I can really do this, but let me just write it down anyway. And at the end of the year, I had four investment properties. Yeah. And I like I get it, it doesn't have anything to do with money. It's really the mindset, number one. Number two, getting really good at what you said earlier on, raising capital. And so I got really good and understanding that there's more than enough money out there. I just have to learn how to become attractive, attractive in a mindset way so that people would then believe in me and want to then say, OK, well, yeah, here's my money. And then I it's a win win scenario with them for investment property is going to help myself and help them and their family as well, too.
George El-Masri [00:23:04] Yeah, exactly. So since we're kind of on this topic, can you tell us how you went from the one condo in Toronto, you know, to at some one point thirty properties down to about fifteen now? Yeah.
Gary Hibbert [00:23:16] Yeah. So so how that happened was so we had to condo in Toronto. Then from there we moved to Ajax, bought a townhouse out there and and then from the townhouse. We sold it for about three years and we outgrew that really fast growing. We had our second second child. And then we bought a detached home, and that really kind of stretched to the limit, you know, it was a detached home. We bought it for like two ninety six or something like that. And at that time, that was super expensive. You know, we didn't know how we were going to afford it. And then coming into 2008, now, here's what I did. And everybody at work thought it was silly for doing this, and even at the time, too, when I did, I thought was maybe a little silly as well, too. But if you remember, they came with a 40 year amortization and I think we had maybe 10 or 12 years left to pay on our home and we'd be more, almost more free. They probably wouldn't because we'd put ourselves in more debt and then increase a mortgage, but that's what we were, and then we put our mortgage up to 40 year amortization and so that our payments went down really low. And so we looked really good on paper. And then we were able to buy another investment or our first investment property in Oshawa for like two hundred thousand, OK. And then from there, we found a net investment group. Learned from them on how to invest in real estate, which was the dominant Corazza, so, yeah, so I do owe a lot to them because they taught me a ton.
George El-Masri [00:24:49] I have no idea that you had that connection to them.
Gary Hibbert [00:24:52] Yeah. So when I saw when I started investing in learning from them, I think they had just left their full time jobs as well. Right.
George El-Masri [00:24:59] Which was about 10 years ago, right.
Gary Hibbert [00:25:00] Yeah, I think. Or maybe like 12. Yeah, something like that. Yeah. And and and that's where I kind of learned the concept of rent to own. And then from there I started doing rent to own. And I was talking to a lot of friends and family. And then what I started doing was I was bringing my friend, friends and family into my home at our at our dinner table and doing a presentation and showing them here's what I'm doing. Do you guys want to partner with me here? I'm doing and I was doing this every month. Cool. And that was when I was really kind of starting to sharpen up my skills and how to do presentations and talk to people. And every time I was nervous and I was sweating it out
George El-Masri [00:25:39] on your own dinner table,
Gary Hibbert [00:25:41] you know, I was a mess, but. Yeah, but it was getting me out of my comfort zone. And and then we we started you know, we started a company called Rent to Own today and bringing in the tenants that way. And then I would either partner with friends, family or sometimes even even coworkers. And that was really how I grew. My portfolio was through rent to own. And then I got to the point where I had enough cash flow coming in that it covered my mortgage payments. And I was like, OK, that's when I kind of got the that the balls to say, OK, I'm going to leave. I didn't have enough money to maybe feed the family, but well, my neighbors are pretty cool, so maybe they'll give us some food and flour and stuff. I can make some dumpling or whatever, but. But that was it. And so I wrote that down once. I have we have enough money coming in to cover our mortgage payments. I want to make that leap of faith
George El-Masri [00:26:33] takes the pressure off your, like, semi financially free. Almost there, right?
Gary Hibbert [00:26:38] Yeah. Yeah, yeah. And and so that was and again, I think it all comes down to just writing down what you want and then just going after it. But that was really how I did it was through Rentoul. Right. That was a I was a large piece of the pie.
George El-Masri [00:26:53] Very cool. And it's cool to see that someone well, Nick and Tom were able to help you transform your life. Yeah. And I'm sure that that's kind of part of your life. Now, you were mentioning that lady that contacted you and said she wants to be an investor. How have you been able to help others along the way?
Gary Hibbert [00:27:09] So the way we've been able to help others is we've got a company called Smartening Choice. We started that back in 2010. And and Smart Choice is a real estate education company, I'll call it, what we do is we we mentor and coach beginning real estate investors through an avenue of different things. We'll do like a mastermind class. We will bring out different guest speakers who are experts in real estate investing. Then we have a classic, a far faster class that kind of repeats every month. We're like, you know, real estate investing 101. Then we'll do property tours and we do webinars. So it's all education based. So I don't really tell anybody to go in. This particular type of investing is just here's the different types of investing, whether it's single family or the BR strategy. And I don't know, you're the audience. So you have this listening, but essentially is taking a single family home convert into a two unit, which is called Buy, Renovate, Rent, Refinance, Repeat.
George El-Masri [00:28:12] And it's applicable to anything really. It could be done on commercial properties done in single family homes.
Gary Hibbert [00:28:18] Yeah, yeah, exactly. And and so that's essentially what we've created. And then one of the things that we recently did this year is we've taken out a couple of the mastermind classes because we were doing like 80 year and we dropped it down to five now. And part of it was just because it was just getting a little too much, because doing the podcast, you know, I'm a part owner now of a brokerage. We have a lending company. So there's so many moving pieces that I said, OK, I don't out of those eight events, let's take three of them and start doing social events. Like to have a good time, too. So then what we do now is we take our clients and our investors like we did, like a Niagara trip this summer, cool. And hang out and have a good time there. And we went bowling and then we've got a brewery tour that's coming up at a nice restaurant in Whippy. So we find by doing that as well to allow us to have fun, but also allows the investors to kind of take them out of the education piece and just kind of just, you know, unwind a little bit and have a drink. And we're finding that some of them are doing joint ventures with each other now. Oh, cool. Yeah. So so that's kind of what we've kind of created, this nice little community of investors and and clients that like hanging out with each other now. Yeah.
George El-Masri [00:29:32] Yeah, very cool. So it's education based. You're giving people the tools to go out there and invest and you're also a realtor so you can help people buy a kind of guiding them through the whole process. Exactly. Yeah. And what's your so today and what are you focusing on. What type of investments.
Gary Hibbert [00:29:49] Yeah, good question. So last year and I think when you invest in real estate for a number of years, you feel like there's like just a bit of a progression. Right. So when I first started, I did the strategy, not even know what the strategy was. I hated it. And it was just because I just wasn't educated on real estate investing and what to do probably step back. Then I got into rent to own love that master that did that for about four or five years. Then I revisited the strategy just because of the prices and I do a lot of investing in Durham and Petero. The prices were starting to climb up and so it getting harder now for these single family homes to work and for rent to own. So then I revisited the strategy and then we started teaching our investors how to do the strategy and a lot of them love it. And then it made sense now for me to now go do multifamily for Unit six, units 10, maybe 20, 30. And so it took a course on that. And me and my wife did it together. And then I called up a good friend of mine, K.C. Wong, and yeah,
George El-Masri [00:30:56] it's a big investor there.
Gary Hibbert [00:30:57] Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. And so he took us around and showed us a number of his investments. And as I said, I don't know if I like this tenent profile or not knocking the strategy, it was just like, I wonder if this is right for us. And my wife wasn't really liking it, but this is what we got to do. This is what all investors do. We we have to get to 100 doors, right? Yeah. And so we went to a Christmas party for four mortgages. And Dave was a huge mentor of mine as well to
George El-Masri [00:31:30] another kind of rock star connection.
Gary Hibbert [00:31:32] Yeah, yeah. Yeah. And he I told him what I was thinking of doing. He goes here with us. That's one way of doing it. And I'm like, oh, what's the other way of doing it? And he goes, What private lending? You know, like why don't you become the bank. And then the more I looked into it, the more it was starting to make sense. And I was like, yeah, why do I need all these doors? I don't because of you know, if I've created the wealth, I don't have to sell them all. If I can sell a few walls and and start kind of focusing more on the cash flow because, you know, I think sometimes you start taking a look at, well, not any more doors and any more cash flow, but it's really hard to scale it to get that much cash flow. Yes, some I've seen some investors do. But where I was, it was going to be difficult to scale it, to get to say, you know, if I want to ten thousand or twenty thousand a month coming in. And so that's what we're primarily focusing on right now, is is private lending for us personally.
George El-Masri [00:32:26] Right. So so you're kind of at the stage now where you're trying to pay off some of these properties so that you can live from the cash flows out or
Gary Hibbert [00:32:34] pay it off to sell some of them. Yeah. So, yeah. So so whether it's a right or wrong strategy, it's just it's what was going to work for us.
George El-Masri [00:32:42] And are you using the proceeds, the sales proceeds to just spend on your everyday living or are you using the sales proceeds to pay off whatever remaining balance you have on the other ones?
Gary Hibbert [00:32:53] So what we're going to do right now is will probably take the cash from some of these properties, put them into into some of these private funds. Got it right. So either first or second mortgage. Yeah. Get the cash flow coming in, which then allows me to free up some of my time to continue doing what you're doing today, which is I love doing podcasts and also the coaching in the mentoring aspect of it. I love that. And also now in the brokerage, you know, we've got about 60 or 70 realtors there. And so now I'm dedicated some time to coach them as well to. Yeah, to show them the importance of real estate investing. So the cool thing that I'm bringing in Smart Home Choice into this brokerage. So it's just brokers now that has this investment arm. And so it's to also teach these these realtors and say, hey, look, you have clients, but there's a huge piece that you're missing. Right. Can you help them buy a home now, go back a few years later and help them not to build wealth. Right. Right. And so to do that is really what is going to allow me to do the free up time. Yeah, right. So, again, is it a right or wrong strategy is really what suits your lifestyle? I think that's the most important, important piece that I really want people to understand that there's no right or wrong.
George El-Masri [00:34:06] Yeah. You don't have to compete with anyone. You don't have to know where anyone else is doing. Right. If they want two hundred dollars, then that's up to you might not be right for your life.
Gary Hibbert [00:34:15] Correct. And so that was a huge eye opener for me earlier this year where I was like, I need to get to that many doors. And I was like, no, I don't, I don't need to do that. I need to really take a look at what's on my vision board and what do you is that I really want to do. And so this now frees up time to look at. The end of the day, it's all about time, right? Because we don't we all have a set amount of time, but you can have an infinite amount of money. And so now I'm just trading the money that I've created for time. Yeah. To do what I want to do.
George El-Masri [00:34:49] Right. Right. And you're just using your assets in a different way. So you're selling off some of these properties, but you're doing private mortgages. So you're probably getting, I'm assuming somewhere between eight to 12 percent annual returns. Yeah.
Gary Hibbert [00:35:01] And anywhere between
George El-Masri [00:35:02] it could be higher.
Gary Hibbert [00:35:03] Some of them are higher. Yeah, some of them are higher.
George El-Masri [00:35:05] And then you can use some of those funds to to live off of basically. So it's actually quite a smart, pretty smart strategy. I haven't really heard of anyone so far that I've interviewed saying that that's what they've done.
Gary Hibbert [00:35:15] Yeah. Yeah. And so now that can create that cash flow. Ten thousand dollars a month. Yes. I'm not building wealth. Yes. I'm not getting the appreciation. Yes. I'm not getting the mortgage pay down. But right now for me it's the cash flow. Right. Right. And that's what I want. I think if you really break it down, that's kind of what most people do want because I can't eat equity, but I can eat cash flow. Yeah.
George El-Masri [00:35:37] So so how come why did you choose to go down the private mortgage path rather than use those funds to pay off your properties and then use the rental portion of the rental income as your cash flow without just have taken too much time?
Gary Hibbert [00:35:50] No, and that's you know what? That's a really good question. The reason why I think we decided to do it was because we started another company called Deep Pockets was a lending company. And so what we also wanted to do was like, yes, we can invest in ourselves. I'd like to if I'm going to start a company and tell people how to invest in a certain product, I want to do it myself. And so what that did was allowed us to do it ourselves. And then because I'd like to learn by doing so, by doing it now, I can bring other investors and say, hey, look, this is what we're doing as well. So for any strategy that I've ever done, I've always done it first. Yeah, I brought other people in, so I didn't want to just do that because I also wanted to start this other company. So I was like, OK, I'll go into this company. It's like I'm not only the what is it? And only the president, but no. What was that saying there? That I'm not only the president, but also a client or I can on
George El-Masri [00:36:45] the big
Gary Hibbert [00:36:45] island. No, no, no. On the big island. It was that that the hair club thing or whatever.
George El-Masri [00:36:50] I remember it was in a Vegas. Oh, is it OK? I think it's I'm not only a client of the president, something like that.
Gary Hibbert [00:36:56] Yeah, OK. I got it wrong anyways, but
George El-Masri [00:36:59] I go, yeah. So why don't we jump into the next section unless there's anything else you want to add on this topic prior to move.
Gary Hibbert [00:37:09] Moving on. No, not so we can move on.
George El-Masri [00:37:11] Cool. So this is the random five. I'm going to ask you five random questions. You just tell me the first thing that comes to mind. Can you describe your morning routine? So yesterday or actually the last two days? I was at a conference and we I got to meet or see how leetspeak who's the author of The Miracle Morning? I don't know. Have you ever heard of the book? No. OK, so he he broke down that a really good morning routine. So I thought I'd ask you about yours and you can tell me what that's like.
Gary Hibbert [00:37:36] Yeah. So look, I'm not going to be as honest as I can here on this question. My morning routine changes from time to time. OK, so some mornings I wake up and I have my cup of coffee and I'll just watch kind of like what's happening in the world in the news because I do find it intriguing. So it's almost kind of like entertainment for you. There's other mornings where I wake up and I go to the gym and I don't listen to music, but I listen to podcasts and and I find that really motivates me. That allows me to come up with some ideas for upcoming topics, upcoming videos that I may do or anything else that I need inspiration from. And so throughout the week, as always, is this different? I don't keep it the same, but I'm usually up by I would say around, you know, anywhere between six and seven o'clock in the morning. I like to wake up early and I like to enjoy the whole day. Yeah, but the very first thing that I do when I sit down at my desk is I look at my whiteboard and then I have my agenda in front of me and I write down what I'm going to do for that week. So I'm very big on designing my day and my week and emails. I look at it from time to time, but I don't focus on it because those are just other things that other people want me to do in Sofus, outside of what's in my agenda that is taking me off track of my goals because the agenda is very close to what's on my whiteboard.
George El-Masri [00:39:02] Right, right. And that's the highest priority. Yes, exactly. Exactly. OK, perfect. What's your most fulfilling and largest goal? And.
Gary Hibbert [00:39:15] Although many I would say I would say, yeah, here's what it is for me. I've created a year now where because a lot of people focus on retiring. Yeah, I do many retirements. And so I retire in July and August and then I retire in December again.
George El-Masri [00:39:32] Cool. What are you doing on vacations?
Gary Hibbert [00:39:34] Spending time with the family. I'm just really doing whatever it is I want to do. Sometimes I like to binge and watch some Netflix shows catch up on it because the other time of the year I'm super busy. I'm busy. I was I was I have decided that I want to live a life to help serve other people. And that's what I like to do during those times. Because I don't think there's anything higher than that if you really strip away everything in life like the money and everything else. What's what's I think the ultimate high is to serve as many people as you can. And so that is what I try to do and dedicate my life to help other people during those times. And then when it's my time, I need to now kind of go to that many retirement, relax, spend time with the family and enjoy life, whatever it is that I want to do.
George El-Masri [00:40:23] So on that topic, what is your family? What do they think of where you're at and what you've been able to to build?
Gary Hibbert [00:40:32] Regarding my kids or
George El-Masri [00:40:34] even like you're if you have siblings or if you have parents that are still around
Gary Hibbert [00:40:38] the. There's a lot of people, I think family and friends that have seen what I do, not all of them have moved over into what I do. I think it's a very small, small handful that have and the rest see it this they don't either know exactly what I do. Yeah. And I don't know if they really want to do what I do. And so it's not a negative or positive thing. It's just, you know, when I first started going down this road, I was like, I want to try and help as many people as I can. And I realize that you can't. So now I just try to be a beacon. And if they want to see or learn more about what I'm doing, then I'll always be here to help them. Right. And so my kids closely see what I do and they and they love it. My daughter is maybe a little bit more involved in it, but my son isn't. And that's fine. You know, I've always told all them, like, whatever it is that you want to do, it's your life. You live it to your fullest potential. And so he's a welder and he's a little bit more of an introvert will say, and that's fine. But he loves it. Yeah. And so he loves it then. I love the fact that he's enjoying that aspect of his life or my my daughter near the hand. She's like really big on. She wants to get a rental property and then she wants to rent out the other rooms to other students and so on. Her and her cousin, her cousin works for me. So she does the admin. She's like 18, OK. And she's she's got a real estate license. So they're very driven and they really want to go down this path of real estate investing. So, yeah, so so it's a mix. Those people that like what I do and they come over and they want to learn from it. Other people just, I think kind of just observe and see what I do, because I do do quite a bit of things and, you know, puts on social media. Yeah. So I'm not scared to kind of put my lifestyle out there. Right. And I think you'll notice, too, in the summertime, I'm always at the cottage. I love the cottages here with a cottage industry allows me to reconnect with friends again. So I enjoy that. It allows me to kind of put the phone aside except for selfies and. Yeah, but that's kind of like that. The time that I love reconnecting with people, I think it's really important.
George El-Masri [00:42:54] Very cool. Very cool. OK, who was your or who is your favorite athlete of all time.
Gary Hibbert [00:43:02] Oh, wow. You don't want my my brother in law, so when I was younger, I used to play soccer. I played it professionally really well at the at the rep level. So professionally, I wasn't going overseas, but I was going to the U.S.. Yeah, I was going into the U.S. So, you know, I did play rep soccer, so I enjoyed it. OK, but in regards to athlete, my brother in law got me into basketball a couple of years ago. I really don't watch sports all that much. But I love the Raptors now. I loved Kawhi and he left off and he broke my heart. Yeah, but if I had to pick a favorite athlete, man. I think Jordan I think Jordan, just because of his story of, you know, how he didn't make it on the basketball team and then he kept trying and trying and eventually he perfected it and got really good and became, I think, a symbol of what is possible. And I mean, even today, he doesn't even playing people know who he is. This is incredible. And just that symbol on the shoe, you know, it just shows a determination and what you can do with your life.
George El-Masri [00:44:15] Yeah, he's mega superstar, like probably the biggest name in basketball. Yeah. Yeah, most likely. Yeah. Yeah, that's incredible. We're cool. And the last question, what success principal do you live by?
Gary Hibbert [00:44:28] Um. Work hard, play hard.
George El-Masri [00:44:32] Yeah, the cottage, right?
Gary Hibbert [00:44:34] That's it, cottage. What kind of play? Yeah, when I'm working what I'm in in work, mon I'm a I'm a top of my game. Uh, it's hard to take me off of it because I'm determined. I hate losing, but I do like the lessons that come from it. Right. And then when it's playtime I love to enjoy it and I like the um what life has to offer because there's just so much, you know, and, uh. You know, being around friends and family. Yeah, I enjoy that.
George El-Masri [00:45:09] Awesome. OK, great. So you shared a lot of great things here before we end things. Do you want to talk about some of the services you offer and who should reach out to you and how?
Gary Hibbert [00:45:20] Yeah, so, look, there's a lot of different services that we offer. Again, you know, Spectrum Choice is an education company. So if you want to get into real estate investing, we do a lot out in the Durham region. And Peterboro, we're doing a lot in Peterboro. I would say probably like 80, 90 percent of our businesses moved into Petero. The numbers make sense and infrastructure and vacancy and job growth. So we like that area. So smart home choice, which is real estate investing. Then we have deep pockets. So for some people who are thinking about getting a real estate investment, but maybe a little bit nervous and want to taste a little bit of it, that's like a private lending company where we do first and second mortgages. And some people who are investing in real estate kind of want to get a mix as well to where they diversify within real estate. So that allows our investors to do that or clients to do that. That I own the the brokerage part owner, Rich and Nozawa. So if you're real turn you're in the Durham market and you want to learn a little bit more about real estate investing within a brokerage. So so we offer that service as well. And then like I mentioned before earlier, I do a podcast. So if you want to call me on that as well, too, I enjoyed this call. We'll talk with Gary. Wealth, health and everything in between because I don't know where I want to take this podcast yet. I know. I want to talk about wealth and health. Yeah. And maybe, you know, one of my kind of mentors that I look up to right now doing podcasts, Joe Rogan, I love his show, so who knows, maybe I might have some scotch on the table and then people can come in and
George El-Masri [00:46:59] a couple of joints.
Gary Hibbert [00:46:59] Yeah, well, I don't know if I go that far. I don't know if I go that far, but, you know, just to liven up it a little bit. Right. So but yeah. So so that's kind of what are some of the services that I offer.
George El-Masri [00:47:10] Very good. And how do people treat
Gary Hibbert [00:47:12] you so they can reach me. I think by email is probably the best. So Gary Geet, one hour. Why at Smart Home Choice.
George El-Masri [00:47:21] Com Awesome. Great. Well thanks again for coming. I know you had a long drive, so I appreciate your time. Yeah, no problem. And looking forward to staying in touch.
Gary Hibbert [00:47:29] All right. Sounds good. Georgeson, thank you very much. I really appreciate this. It was a good, good time hanging out with you.
George El-Masri [00:47:34] Any time. Any time. All right. Thanks for listening to this episode, I hope you enjoyed the content and as a valued listener, I'm giving away a sample letter of intent. This letter is used once your potential coal venture expresses interest in working with you. It outlines the general structure of the deal and intentions of both parties. You could visit w w w well off Caucasia forward slash letter to receive your free copy w w w well off dossie forward slash letter.