Today I had the pleasure of speaking with Sarah Larbi. Sarah is an incredibly experienced and successful real estate investor from Ontario, Canada. She has built a 7-figure portfolio in just 7 years from buying her first property while also working a full-time job! Soon, Sarah plans to leave her 9-5 and just live comfortably with the income she gets from her real estate investments. In addition to all these, Sarah is also an accomplished speaker, coach, mentor and host of the real estate investing podcast “Where should I invest?”
Let’s dive into Sarah’s story of how just jumping in, NOT waiting for the perfect deal, and learning from your mistakes can help you scale your real estate business and help you achieve your goals faster!
[00:01 – 06:30] Opening Segment
Before she was a real estate investor with a 7-figure ten properties investment portfolio, according to Sarah she did not even know what “assets” and “liabilities” were. She really just started googling and eventually, got hooked to learning about passive income, what do wealthy people do, and how she will be able to retire early.
Sarah mainly learned about real estate investing from books and podcasts so to also help other people, she now also hosts two podcasts and sometimes holds classes about real estate investing.
[6:30-11:25] The value of BRRRR Investment Strategy
Sarah is a big fan of the BRRRR investment strategy which for her is the best combination of flipping and holding. BRRRR stands for Buy, Renovate, Rent, Re-finance, and Repeat.
She also shares that while most people prefer not putting their friends and family members in their rentals, this is actually how they got started! Her very first tenant in her very first property was her sister-in-law. The rest is history. Listen also to Sarah and her husband’s strategy of looking for tenants first before actually looking for the property to match them to!
[11:25-19:14] Overcoming Analysis Paralysis
A lot of people, investors most especially, often get stuck in analysis paralysis. However, Sarah shares that she does not really experience being stuck because she has a totally different approach—ready, fire, aim!
If you’re one of the people who loves to analyze things and are wondering what would happen if you also do ready, fire, aim…Sarah also shares that she made some mistakes because of this strategy. What’s more important to her though is that this mindset/strategy helped her get to where she is now because she did allow herself to just be stuck overanalyzing things.
Regarding mistakes they made and what they learned from it though, listen also to Sarah’s sharing about why they’ll never buy a property again with an attic access that has been shut closed or which has no attic access at all. (Spoiler alert: this mistake cost them $20,000 initially but the good news is they now think it’s still worth it!)
[19:13 – 29:53] What should your end goal be?
Aside from the BRRR strategy, another strategy Sarah makes use of is to have both nest egg and quick cash properties. The nest egg properties are the properties she plans on keeping which will generate the cashflow she is looking for when they’re finally paid off.
She also shares a few other tips/techniques to be able to pay off these properties quickly. At present, Sarah works “backward from her goals” and still works a full-time job until she’s able to make sure that she has already built a portfolio that she has 100% control over.
Lastly, Sarah shares her thoughts about what she really thinks about setting goals: “I don’t care about having 1,000 properties just to say that I have 1,000. I’d rather choose being able to do what I want while I’m still young enough to enjoy it.”
[29:53-33:56] The Focus Five Segment
The FOCUS FIVE are five questions I ask every guest on my show. Keep on listening to find out what book Sarah gifts most often; who would she talk to if she can get an hour of any person living or dead, and why; that one thing she believes but most people will disagree with; her morning routine; and lastly, where are the best places we can connect with her online. (See the links below for Sarah’s social media links!)
“(At First) You’re not gonna learn everything, you’re not gonna have your perfect deal – buy something that’s good enough, and hold on for the long term and it will become a great deal over time” – Sarah Larbi
“People waiting for that perfect deal, when it comes, you don’t think that there are a ton of other investors that are much more experienced who are gonna jump on it right away anyways – you’re gonna be doing nothing for years.” – Sarah Larbi
“I don’t care about having 1,000 properties, I don’t… Just to say, what? I have 1,000? I’d rather just say I can do what I want, I’m young enough to enjoy it, and I have what I need…” – Sarah Larbi
Resources mentioned in the episode:
You can connect with Sarah personally on Instagram. Make sure to visit her website saralarbi.com to learn more about her and her other projects and coaching offers. Also, check out her podcast to hear from Sarah herself and receive some very valuable pieces of advice about investing.
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