#110, 9780 Cambie Road, Richmond, V6X 1K4 Ph. 604-618-2128 Em. teresa@pointbinvestment.ca, Multiple Realty Richmond

Real Estate Investing = Tenants Finances your Future

photo-2-3-150x150I came across a blog post from REIN (Real Estate Investment Network) a few months ago that I thought would help my readers understand why real estate investing is one of the most powerful investment vehicles in the market. Here is what REIN Property Analyst, Ray Reuter saids about investment real estate.

Here’s some super simple math showing exactly why residential real estate is so cool.

Let’s say you go out and buy a single property TODAY for $300,000 (call it a suited house) and based on your conservative numbers, this property does nothing more than break even every month (and we’re buying in a stable, well-performing market based on the fundamentals).

No cash flow, just break even.

Then we’re going to assume that the market will stay flat forever. We both know the market will go up, it will go down, but assume that over the next 20 years those ups and downs equate to a FLAT market…it’s still worth $300,000 in 2033.

Still with me?


Now over that 20 years the property just breaks even, nothing more, nothing less. Sure we’ve been up some months, but we’ve had some repairs & maintenance, some vacancy…so, over those 20 years we just break even.

Some would call this a boring piece of real estate…even a ‘non-performing’ piece of real estate.

Call me crazy, but guess what, I call that a $900 a month savings plan that someone else (called my tenants) paid for .

That’s right, after 20 years of holding this ‘non-performing’ piece of real estate I’m left with the equivalent of someone giving me $900 every single month for 20 years…I call that one heck of a savings plan.

Tell me, do you put $900 away every month right now? Maybe…but that’s still YOUR money, money you had to work hard for!

I’m talking about $900/month that someone gave me for the last 20 years, and it’s mine…all from an unexciting, ‘non-performing’, piece of residential real estate.

Want the math?

OK. So I bought for $300,000, I put 20% down plus closing costs, so roughly $65,000.

In 2033, 20 years from now, I sell it for the exact same price…$300,000.

I get my $65,000 investment back.

I pay the Realtor and closing costs and I’m left with roughly $215,000.

That’s no cash flow, that’s no appreciation, that’s simply my tenants paying down my mortgage (both principle and interest) for the last 20 years and leaving me with a free and clear property.

So $215,000 divided by 20 years = $10,750 per year

Divide that by 12 months = $896/month…that someone else gave me.

Sure we can calculate opportunity cost for your $65,000 investment, but tell me, would you be even mildly happy if someone, some stranger, was contributing even $500 a month into a savings plan for YOU & YOUR FAMILY for the next 20 years????

That’s like someone else contributing to your RSP fund every month. You OK with that??

Of course!

Go ahead, poke holes in it if you want…

“Ray, no one gets a 20 year mortgage!” OK, do you think with some strategic planning you can have this property paid off after 20 years…especially if you bank on no cash flow? I say of course!

“Ray, what about a the roof, the furnace, etc???”

You’re absolutely right.

But let’s be serious, over the next 20 years do you think my rent is going to go up or down? Do you think my property will be worth more or less in 20 years buying in a fundamentally strong area?

Heck, even WHEN interest rates go up, guess what? So will my rent!

This is a no-brainer.

You can spend the next hour tearing this apart, telling people this Reuter guy is full of #$%…

OR maybe…just maybe, this makes sense.

Bottom line – real estate is simple…it’s just not easy!

And we’re not talking get rich quick, we’re not talking some ‘sexy’ investment strategy that 0.1% of investors ever pull off, just a simple old piece of real estate that you rent out and maintain for 20 years that YOU have 100% control over!

IT’S SIMPLE – I invest $65,000 to make $215,000 (before tax)…I’ll take that all day long, and that’s ONE PROPERTY.

Now imagine if you bought 10 properties just like that over the next few years (which isn’t rocket surgery).

It’s the power of leverage, the power of having control of your investments, and the power of being in the business of putting a roof over someone’s head (a business that ain’t going anywhere any time soon!!!)

Think about it, read this note a few times, this stuff works.

– Ray Reutor, Real Estate Investment Network

My Recommendation:  It’s never too late to start investing in real estate.  Start small with a condo and build up to a townhouse and then a single family home with multiple suites.  Real estate investing is the ONLY investment that can utilize tenants to finance your monthly income and your future retirement.  Start investing today.  You will be happy you started, and your family will thank you for it.

– Teresa Leung

I am a licensed realtor dedicated to securing you wealth through strategic real estate investment.  My mission is to help you achieve financial freedom by creating enough passive income to eventually replace your working income, so that you can spend more time doing what you love with the people you care about.  For more information, go to www.pointbinvestment.ca.

The First Door is the Hardest


When successful investors talk about their property acquisitions, they always say their first door was the hardest.  A few years ago, before I bought my first investment property, I wasn’t really sure what those investors meant. Since I decided to purchase, in 3 months time, I easily came up with the required 20% down payment (made up of my own savings, a gift from my dad, and a short-term low interest loan from my mom.)  There was no difficulty there at all!

Finding my first property was equally easy.  I had my sights on a 2 bedroom condo in St. Albert, Alberta overlooking the Sturgeon River.  The suite is on the top floor of the building and has a view of the river.  This area also has all the economic fundamentals of a solid investment.   In case you don’t know where St. Albert is located, it is 10 minutes North of Edmonton in Alberta and has an average household income of $136,000 (Vancouver’s average household income is just under $90,000), where the rental vacancy rate is just 0.5%.  The suites in this particular property provide a positive monthly cashflow after all expenses are paid, and is even managed by Alture Properties for a nominal monthly fee.  With monthly income, a waterfront view, and Alture taking care of all tenant issues, this investment was a true winner.

I believe that the Universe wanted ME to own this property as there were about 3 or 4 people who tried to purchase this particular unit before me, but for some reason, none of those people were able to close on it due to various issues.  I considered this a pretty great score.

After these initial steps, everything that followed was pretty much a royal pain in the butt.  Here’s what happened;

Financing Issues

I was surprised by all the financing issues I had given that I had an excellent credit score of over 700, full-time employment with salary and commissions, a home with lots of equity, a home line of credit (HELOC) with a zero balance, and my 20% down payment.  My new waterfront suite even had tenants currently renting at above-market rents, making this acquisition a profitable business.  Here’s the situation with the banks;

Bank #1: The first bank said they could only finance 70%, which meant I had to come up with another 10% for a total of 30% down payment.  Solution?  Real estate investing is all about leverage and having your tenants pay the mortgage.  Fronting another 10% of my own money is silly, so I went to another bank.

Bank #2: The second bank said they would finance 75% but wanted me to reduce my HELOC from a few hundred thousand to $50K.  Apparently, they now calculate debt servicing by assuming I have used my entire HELOC even though I have a zero balance!  Reducing my HELOC wasn’t an option for me, since this is my seed money for future investment properties.  Solution?  I went to another bank.

Bank #3: The third bank said they would finance 75% loan to value and I would get to keep my HELOC with no changes or limit reductions.  Given that I only had 20% of the down payment, this option meant I had to come up with another 5% for the down payment.  Solution?  I realized that borrowing rules have continued to tighten and very few banks are now willing to finance 80% loan to value on investment properties, so 75% isn’t unreasonable. Since I was ok with this, I now needed to come up with another 5% of the purchase price.

I was thinking of taking this out of my HELOC, when out of nowhere my sister from Hong Kong called me.  We were discussing other matters, and I casually told her about this 5% that the bank wanted for my waterfront condo.

Note: My sister happens to own a few investment properties all with waterfront views.  Saying that she loves the water would be an understatement.  Every window of her home overlooks the Hong Kong harbor and even her office has a beautiful view of ships sailing in water.  

When I spoke to her about this purchase, she was excited that I saw things HER way, and offered to fund the additional 5% with an interest free loan… all without me even having to ask her!  An interest-free loan beats paying 3.5% on my HELOC any day!  (I love my family…)  Great, I’m all set! So I thought…

Appraisal Issue

Bank #3 had my property appraised and it turned out the appraised value came in slightly lower than my offer price.  This sometimes happens as appraisers get to choose which properties in the area to use as comparibles, and this appraiser happened to chose a few non-waterfront condos further from the river.  As banks will only finance 75% of the appraised value, I would need more money to cover the difference between the purchase price and the appraised price.

Determined not to give up, I spoke to the seller (who happens to be my employer at the time) and through negotiations, they agreed to finance the difference with a Vendor Take-Back Loan!


So after almost 2 months of overcoming various obstacles, I finally bought my first investment property. The bonus was I effectively financed 95% of my investment property using other people’s money!  So for anyone who thinks it is impossible to purchase their first property, this proves that it really IS POSSIBLE. It may be annoyingly difficult, but it is possible! And lastly, remember that obstacles are what you see when you take your eyes off your goals, and any great achievement is preceded by many difficulties and many lessons; great achievements are not possible without them.

My recommendation.  I can now confirm that all the rumors are true.  Your first investment property purchase will be the most difficult.  Both saving up the initial deposit and being able to finance the mortgage requires determination, creativity and patience.  If you truly desire to succeed in real estate investing, be persistent and explore your options.  If you’re unhappy about terms of the agreement, walk away from the deal.  There will always be other great properties and banks that are willing to lend you money.  Open your mind to asking family for help, vendor take back loans (VTB’s), and joint venturing with others.  The more open you are at exploring these options, the more successful you will be in creating wealth through real estate.

I am a licensed realtor dedicated to securing you wealth through strategic real estate investment.  My mission is to help you achieve financial freedom by creating enough passive income to eventually replace your working income, so that you can spend more time doing what you love with the people you care about.  For more information, go to www.pointbinvestment.ca.

Too Young to Start Investing in Real Estate? Not this 19 Year Old…

Ben-Hoffman-Edmonton-real-estate-investor-225x300There is an old saying, “Who you journey with is who you will become”. This is the case with Ben Hoffmann, who had been working since the age of 16 as a framing carpenter during high school. While having lunch one day, he was listening to his older construction co-workers talk about investing in real estate and the many benefits of ownership. Ben was only 19 years old when he bought his first investment property.

Ben looked up to his colleagues, but being a curious and wise young man himself, he wanted to do some research first and really understand the real estate game before taking the next steps. He read Robert Kyosaki’s “Rich Dad, Poor Dad” and learned that it was investing in profitable real estate that made people rich as opposed to higher education. Ben thought to himself, “I can relate, I love working in the construction industry andI don’t care much for school.”

Since Ben lived at home with his parents, he was able to save quite of bit of money from working full-time. It wasn’t long before Ben decided to purchase hisfirst property, a turn-key2 bedroom condo in St. Albert, Alberta. The property had all the economic fundamentals of a solid investment. His suite would be managed by Alture’s in-house property management and Ben really didn’t need to contribute any more time except to check his bank account every month to see his tenant’s rent deposit. He now knew what his co-workers were preaching about and is proud to “journey with them”.

Ben states, “I couldn’t have done this without my loving and supportive family but the key to this success was working with real estate investment specialists, who introduced me to completely hassle-free investments. “ Today, Ben has 6 investment properties, and is currently working on his 7th. His goal is to purchase 10 more properties in 5 years, for a total of 16 investments, and to inspire other young people to start saving to invest. – Way to go Ben!

My recommendation. One thing I consistently hear my clients say is “I wish that I had started real estate investing earlier.” I always tell people it’s never too old or too young to start.   I have clients who started investing in their late 50’s and were able to purchase 3-5 properties a year. The first property is the hardest, but I must warn you that once you start, it does get addictive. Ensure you have a knowledgeable real estate investing team around you that has a track record of success so you can learn from them and avoid disappointments.

I am a licensed realtor dedicated to securing you wealth through strategic real estate investment.  My mission is to help you achieve financial freedom by creating enough passive income to eventually replace your working income, so that you can spend more time doing what you love with the people you care about.  For more information, go to www.pointbinvestment.ca.


Want Real Estate Investing Success? Know Your WHY’s.

Why-Image-236x300In my first blog post, “Journey to Liberty”, I expressed that my goal is to own real estate investment of 20 doors by year 2017. But WHY do I want to do this? Why does anyone want to do this?

As real estate investors or business owners, before we start anything, it’s always good to know our why. For most people, their why may be their children & family, for others it could be because they want to change their life circumstance for the better. When you know what your why is, it will propel you to work harder, faster, and smarter. When you feel uncomfortable trying new things to reach your goals, it’s this very WHY that pushes you through.

So what are my WHY’s?

Why #2: My 2 Young Daughters

I’ve been a single Mom for almost a decade. I’m not going to kid you and say that it’s easy. It’s not. Mentally and physically, it’s draining sometimes. But these are my favorite people in the world who have loved me from Day 1, and will continue to love me till the sweet end. What I would like is to have some money set aside to 1) go on vacation with my daughters every year which is a win for all of us, 2) help them purchase their car, and 3) contribute to the purchase of their first home to kick-start their adult lives. After that girls, don’t call me unless it’s Mother’s Day, my birthday or Christmas ok?

Why #1: Me, myself and I

Four years ago, during the Vancouver Olympics, I was in a much different place emotionally and financially than I am today.  Due to life’s circumstances, I ended up living in a Woman’s shelter for almost a month.  I did have a job that I liked, but I was living paycheque to paycheque.   It was in 2010 that I decided that I no longer wanted to live this way and  I knew that I was the only person who has the power to change my life.  I made the decisions to create wealth, to ensure I have balance in my life, to give back to my community, and to be happy.  I learned everything I could about real estate investment and passive income from successful investors, and I took action to acquire income properties in high growth areas.  I am thankful that I had such a low period in my life, as without it, I wouldn’t have such a huge WHY.

My recommendation. In order for you to achieve your real estate investing goals easier (or any goals), you must know WHY you have these goals and really give it some thought. Knowing your WHY’s makes it that much more meaningful, deserving, and fulfilling when you achieve it. Sure, it can be for your family, your dog, for mankind… but the Number One reason you want to achieve your goals should be for YOU. Who do you think the common denominator of your life is?  When on an airplane, they always instruct you in an event of an emergency to put the oxygen mask on yourself first before helping others. How would you be able to help your loved ones and to give back to the world if you don’t have the emotional and financial capacity to do so?

I am a licensed realtor dedicated to securing you wealth through strategic real estate investment.  My mission is to help you achieve financial freedom by creating enough passive income to eventually replace your working income, so that you can spend more time doing what you love with the people you care about.  For more information, go to www.pointbinvestment.ca.

Regrets or Gratitude, You Choose

balance-285x175Regrets are missed opportunities, like a love unexpressed, a dream unrealized, a gift or talent unshared.

Let’s look at what some believe to be the 5 greatest regrets as you look back on your life before you die.

  1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life that I dreamed and not the life others expected me to live.
  2. I wish I hadn’t worked so hard.
  3. I wish I’d had been more honest with my feelings.
  4. I wish I had stayed in touch with those who touched my life.
  5. I wish that I had allowed more joy to fill my life. 

For more information on this topic, go to http://networkedblogs.com/Fgw3k

My recommendation:  When individuals live with regrets this causes stress and unhappiness, whereas living with gratitude increases people’s happiness.  I encourage you to end each evening listing out all the people and things in your life that you are grateful for.  Don’t expect so much from yourself, be true to whom you are, work hard but balance life with taking care of yourself and make time for friends and family because in the end, it’s the memories with loved ones you will cherish the most.

I am a licensed realtor dedicated to securing you wealth through strategic real estate investment.  My mission is to help you achieve financial freedom by creating enough passive income to eventually replace your working income, so that you can spend more time doing what you love with the people you care about.  For more information, go to www.pointbinvestment.ca.