Before diving into today’s post, I wanted to let readers know why I haven’t been posting here the last several weeks. BawldMom had her second minor stroke, complicated by a slacker heart valve. She’s fine now, but at 81, is any stroke minor? She’s now rehabbing, which includes twice weekly workouts at the rehab center, various doctor appointments, and MOST important of all, the weekly hairdresser appointment on Fridays. All this has required me and The Boss to cart her around, as her drivin’ days are in the rearview mirror. A solution to this has been found, so that others will be acting as her chauffeur most of the time. Then there’s been the time lookin’ for a new place to live. Since we need a granny flat or something akin to that, you can imagine the slim pickin’s. What with so many hours driving Mom around — obviously a FAR greater priority than writing words on a blog — posting here was temporarily crossed off the to-do list. If Mom lives another century, I’ll still be in her debt. But then you know that, right? We can never really pay our moms back for everything they did for us.
Finally, thanks so much, from the bottom of my wicked BawldHeart to those who’ve called and written with words of support. I tell Mom all the time about those who’ve said they’ve been thinkin’ about her, praying too. Again, thanks a million to all of you.
OK, back to what passes as normal. Let the posting begin.
Though Purposeful Planning is the foundation on which any serious retirement plan should be built, one of the most important factors to be considered is age. Yeah, I know, ‘Hello, Captain Obvious’. Still, I was struck the other day as I had one of the two best ‘first meetings’ with a real estate investor I’ve had this year. It’s always exciting for me to be able to meet clients and potential clients face to face, as more than nine of 10 live 300-12,000 miles away from me. I’ve had ongoing clients for years and not met them in person, though we’ve developed a super relationship while talking on the phone. I had one of those meetings recently, and it was magnificent.
First off, while maintaining his privacy, I wanna thank him for driving a couple hours or so, then buyin’ lunch. The setting was perfect, the conversation priceless — and we met again the next morning. Thanks for everything, especially the back to back fixes.
Let me give you the most crucial takeaway resulting from these meetings.
Any strategy, principle, axiom, or tactic used in real estate investing, or any other investing for that matter, is rarely universal. It’s almost always subject to context. Don’t gloss over that statement. When preparing a seriously thought out Purposeful Plan, factors providing reliable context will be pivotal — an understatement if there ever was one. But it doesn’t end once we’ve identified the real life context of all pertinent factors. That context, and the strategy(s) it generates are subject to an even more powerful aspect of Planning — your comfort zone.
Again — please don’t shrug off the concept of your comfort zone, by merely noddin’ your head in agreement while reading on. Our comfort zone is the most powerful factor in nearly all of the decisions required when investing in real estate for retirement. If any one decision begins to even slightly nudge us outside that zone, everything comes to a halt. You know in your heart of hearts that’s true.
When part of the context is based upon you being 50 or over, things change. Duh, right? Things making sense just a few years ago, might not be on your menu now. This is especially true if you’re 55ish and wanna retire yesterday afternoon around 4:30. You may have a boatload of equity and investment capital at your disposal, but when your time window is 5-10 years, your Plan better dang well reflect that reality. Also, and again using context as our guide, building net worth is cool, but amassing impressive retirement cash flow is much mo betta according to the latest official BawldGuy Survey.
The concepts of both context and comfort zone are nearly always found keepin’ close company. When we mess with either one, whether by design, mistake, or with intent, the results will not be pleasing, an understatement if ever there was one. This is why I’m constantly beating the drums for the principles on which Purposeful Planning is based. Without context virtually any Plan will be doomed to failure. Ditto with the violation of your comfort zone. If we’re not comfortable, most of us will eventually force a change back into that zone.
Don’t mess with context or comfort zone — it rarely turns out well.
I’d be smack dab in the middle of my comfort zone is you decided to call or email me. Wanna talk? 619 889-7100 will find me. I answer my own phone. Rather write me? Easy peezy — click on the Contact BawldGuy button up top. Have a good one.