Andrew Carnegie said that “90% of all millionaires become so through owning real estate”.
As a young girl, my grandmother was my investing mentor. She never knew it, but observing her frugality and money management had an enormous impact on me. Having been raised in the Great Depression, she managed her money and investments with scrutiny. She was widowed at a young age, with 6 children, and was left to take charge of the future of her family. Like 80% of American women, she too, outlived her husband.
She was my inspiration for real estate investing. I watched her manage several duplexes in a college town and learned the value of investing in real estate. She’ll never know how influential she was to me at that young age.
1.The Power Of Choices
What I didn't realize at the time was the power of choice that it provided. When you create multiple streams of income and different ways that your money can work for you, it opens up a world of untapped potential. You aren’t as dependent on the rigors of a 9-5 job. As a single mom, the extra money produced by my cash flow rental properties enabled me to pay for my children's activities and vacations. It also provided "freedom", in that I had the confidence to negotiate flexibility in every job I took. Throughout my children's growing up years, I had well-paying corporate jobs that enabled me the freedom to work flexibility in hours, work from home, and allowed me to be full in on parenting. Having income from other sources (rental properties) provided me the confidence to seek out and get these opportunities.
Real estate investors often speak about "financial freedom", and most often they mean a point at which your income from rental investments is more than your expenses. Naturally, we all strive to reach this point, but freedom exists along the journey as well. That extra income can pay for the "freedom" to take your family on that beach vacation, or the "freedom" to take a year or two off work when you have a newborn, and so much more.
Obviously, everyone should "take charge" of their investing and know their financial situation, but women are in a unique scenario. The biggest concern for women is longevity. Statistically, women out live their male partners by 7 years (on average), and some women marry men who are older than them, which can increase that gap by 10-15 yrs. Another way to look at it is, 80% of women die widowed, 80% of men die married. The average age for widowhood is 59 years.
To add to these facts, the average woman takes 10-15 years off work for child birth/rearing AND parent care. This means they have less income, less money being put into social security and less saved.
3. Disciplined and Focused
It's also a fact that most women don’t invest aggressively, for many reasons. However, Women actually may make better investors than men because they can be more disciplined and focused on the long term.
Here's the good news:
Today there are over 10 million entrepreneurs who have flexible working situations. More women are graduating from college than men. More women are tuned into finances, and better yet, more women are buying homes more than ever. The driver for this is that women are getting married later in life, in their 30s. Often times, they've purchased a home that they turn into a rental when they get married. This can be a big source of freedom when they keep this asset in their own name and turn it into a cash flowing source of income.
If you aren’t happy with your financial situation, change it. The great Jim Rohn said,
“If you don’t like where you are, move. You are not a tree.”
How to Get Started:
You owe it to yourself to be powerfully in charge of your finances. But how to get started you ask? Start with these two easy tips:
Educate yourself. There are so many free resources available, and people who love to share what they’ve learned.
Start small. You can (and most people do) start small and grow as your level of experience and confidence grows. If only 30% of property investors are women, let’s grow that number and help each other.
If you want to learn more about real estate investing, reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.