18 year old investor - Posted by Ryan Fernelius

Posted by SusanL.–FL on January 11, 2001 at 12:01:23:

…last year when I read all your posts!

Keep up the good work.


18 year old investor - Posted by Ryan Fernelius

Posted by Ryan Fernelius on January 10, 2001 at 03:07:32:

Hello everyone! I am Ryan Fernelius, I currently live in Minnesota. I have been working for myself as a Web Designer for a year now. I am not making enough money to live. Jobs are few and far between. I have recently discoved the late night paid programming by Carleton Sheets. Here is my situation. I am 18, single, and have very little credit. The only thing that I own is my truck(1991 chevy s-10). Basically I need to know if there is any way for me to start in the Real Estate business. I have read through most all of the CRE site and have found many ideas that sound really very good. I guess I am just at the point where I don’t know if an 18 year old can do it. If anyone can tell me where an 18 year old can start please let me know. I thank all of you for your time and interest. I look forward to hearing from anyone with any suggestions. Deeply grateful,
Ryan Fernelius

Re: 18 year old investor - Posted by Jim IL

Posted by Jim IL on January 10, 2001 at 23:58:50:

Your age will not be a hinderence when you learn what you need to in order to solve a truly motivated sellers problems.
I work with a partner on some deals, and he is the young investor from the success stories here.
He does deals, and helps me do them as well.
We work well together.
Surround yourself with those who think like you do, want the same things, and are doing the same things and you will be better off for it.
Also surround yourself with people who are as successful as you want to be.
You will begin to emulate them.
And, like minded people can help many times as well.
I recently met a seller with my partner.
He caught something the seller said that I missed.
He brought it up, and managed to help us negotiate the seller to pay us to take the deed on her home.
So, we are getting the deed and a check from the seller this friday.
It is nice to have a second person there when talking to sellers and buyers, who thinks like you and has the same goals.

I’m sure you can find someone local, and if not, this baord is full of us.

Have fun and get out there,
Jim IL

P.S. I am “older” than you in your eyes, but not that much. I am only 32, and had I known at 18 what I know now, Holy cow!
I could be retired.
Even though I don’t imagine ever quitting this, because I truly love doing deals.
It is a rush!

Let’s send Ryan to the Convention! - Posted by Ben (NJ)

Posted by Ben (NJ) on January 10, 2001 at 17:28:17:

As Ed stated, how many of us read this post and said “God, where would I be now if I had this knowledge at age 18?”. Well, here is our chance to do something about it! I, for one, will start. I hereby pledge the first $100.00 to send Ryan to the convention. To keep everything on the level, all funds will be sent directly to JP, who will verify the veracity of this post, Ryan’s age, identity etc. Who’s with me on this? Let’s hear from you!

THANKS TO ALL!!! - Posted by Ryan Fernelius

Posted by Ryan Fernelius on January 10, 2001 at 14:06:59:

I just want to thank everyone for their time and efforts put into my question. I feel much more confident about doing what I am doing(studying the site and learning). I feel that I have a tremendous support group from all of you here at the site. I am very excited to get out there and start doing what I have learned. I again thank everyone here who has taken the time to reply to my posting. I will NOT let my age get in the way of my real estate business. I will not let the naysayers tell me that it can not be done! I will do it and I will be successful at it! Thanks again for all your help, and this wonderful site! THANKS!!

Ryan Fernelius

Oh YES you CAN do it!! - Posted by SusanL.–FL

Posted by SusanL.–FL on January 10, 2001 at 11:51:02:

I DO L-O-V-E these posts! Youth and exuberance!! It gets a lot of us ?pumped? up!!

As Jim C. said, you may encounter frustrations along the way but just keep on going. Just take it a step at a time.

The other day a friend said to me [when I was heatedly ?spouting? off about ?life?,] ?How do you eat an elephant, Susan? ONE bite at a time.?

That?s the same kind of advice I will pass along to you, Ryan. Step-by-step you will get through a deal. And once it?s in your blood, you are gonna LOVE it!

Recently, I?ve encountered my own fair share of frustrations and aggravations. I?ve been trying to launch my husband in a little ?Mom and Pop? business-?with ?Pop? runnin? the whole show. But—I feel like I?ve been bashing my head against the wall these past six weeks.

Because we were on a really tight budget) I costed$ everything out right down to the nichel. I also set up a very tight ?timeline? for the project–from start to finish–(and in my naivete) FULLY expected to meet the schedule. As is always the case, ?life? got in the way!

I was hoping that most (if not ALL) the work, ?we? [as in Kenny] :slight_smile: would do himself. Some I knew we would have to ?sub? out (because we were lacking in the necessary skills).

At this point, this ?project? has taken on a life of its own? Vendors who wouldn?t return phone calls, an ?architect? who drew up half-a#$ed plans (withOUT the seal I needed for my building permit), who THEN told us he really wasn?t an architect and didn?t have a seal! A concrete contractor who agreed (over the phone) to give us an estimate for only the portion of the project, who instead gave me an estimate for the ENTIRE$$$$$$$$$$$$ job!!! :frowning:

I?m having to exercise restraint right now because my impatience gets the best of me. I usually want (and expect) things to chug along at ?breakneck? speed----and they just don?t! Normal, everyday ?life? gets in the way.

But! One thing’s for sure, I KNOW (in my heart) that my plan will work so I will keep my nose to the grindstone until it is completed. One step at a time and I?ll reach my goal!!

Good luck to you Ryan! You?ll do fine.


Re: 18 year old investor - Posted by Ed Garcia

Posted by Ed Garcia on January 10, 2001 at 10:39:53:


I’d give anything to be your age and know what I know. When I was your age, I couldn’t find my behind with both hands. So I want to compliment you for your maturity and desire of wanting to get a head.

Ryan, you state, “I guess I am just at the point where I don’t know if an 18 year old can do it.” Ryan, you can’t do it, if you think you can’t do it.

Ryan, I won’t con you and tell you that your age isn’t a hindrance. Sure it’s going to get in your way. Get in your way is one thing, stopping you is another.

Enough of the fatherly talk, now let me tell you what you have to do.

You’ve said you’ve been reading through the CRE site. If you have, pay particular attention to the How-To Articles. Two articles in particular, one by Ed Wachsman which is titled " A Glossary Of Common Terms Used In Loans And Lending". The reason that article is so important, is because you need to learn the language. You need to know the terms, in order for you to understand what you are doing.

Read my article, “Making Money When You Buy”. I’m not recommending it just because I wrote it, but because it does what I call, pencils out a deal. It shows you the fundamentals of looking at a deal with built in profit, and considering all costs involved to derive at your given profit. All of the articles are of value to a newbie, but those two teach you the language and how to formulate a deal.

In my article I tell you to, evaluate how much time you can commit to real estate. If your approach is “hit or miss,” your results will be too.

I then tell you to, go to the street. It is the best teacher. Rather than talk about doing deals, reading in the library, getting more courses, JUST DO IT.

I proceed to say that, in the long run, you’ll find that the street is the best teacher. Not only that, but by getting out an doing it, you’ll learn your MARKET, meet people to build a NETWORK, learn the demographics and geographics of your area, and of course you will have overcome the biggest obstacle in getting started: PROCRASTINATION.

Ryan, PROCRASTINATION is your enemy. It’s the main reason most newbies never get off of the ground. I come from the school of, DO SOMETHING, EVEN IF IT’S WRONG. Albert Einstein says it more eloquently when he says " Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new"

Back to the STREET, Ryan there is no better teacher. The truth is out there.
Learn every technique you can, and then don’t depend on any of them. I see investors who just do lease/options or flips etc. They become so good, that they develop an expertise, and then become comfortable with that technique. I can’t say it’s bad, but it’s limiting, and restricts you thinking on how you see a deal. You’re automatically looking at every deal in the same manner no matter your technique.

Ryan, This site can be instrumental in your quest for knowledge. Compared to this site, what you would get from a library is antiquated. This site is alive and breathing. You can come to this forum and ask a question, and have multiple opinions with multiple perceptions as well. I’ve got to run now, but what I’ve shared with you is just a start. As you go along and grow, everything will come together and fall into place.

Once again, as far as your age goes, just keep this in mind,


Ed Garcia

Re: 18 year old investor - Posted by Jeff S.

Posted by Jeff S. on January 10, 2001 at 10:34:45:


Get in touch with a local REI club in your area. Go to the meeting and ask questions of those present. I’m sure they will be more than happy to answer them for you. This live interaction will be some of the most influential information you will get to decide if this business is right for you.

If you don’t know of any REI clubs, go to the menu at this site and look under ‘resources’ for ‘local REI clubs’. There are a couple listed there for Minnesota. Whether they are close enough to attend a meeting, well that depends on where you live.

Good Luck to YOU!


Re: 18 year old investor - Posted by Jeanne

Posted by Jeanne on January 10, 2001 at 10:32:15:

Dear Ryan,

Here is a success story by an 18-year old and 19-year old.


Good luck,

Re: 18 year old investor - Posted by Jim C

Posted by Jim C on January 10, 2001 at 09:39:33:

Don’t be intimidated by your age. I’m 21 and have been studying Real Estate Investing since last May. I wasn’t REALLY serious about it at first, but now I am. I haven’t done any deals yet, but that’s because I haven’t found an area that I was comfortable to get started in. I have found Lease/Options, though, and it seems less intimidating for a young person to do. If you want to be successful in this business, don’t expect to just magically become wealthy without any work put into it. You need to study everything you can study. I would definitely recommend “Rich Dad Poor Dad” as well. I read it about a month and a half ago and it has definitely changed my thinking. I thought it was great. I always HATED reading, but when I read stuff on Real Estate Investing, for some reason, I love it! It’s exciting.

One important thing about this business is to remember that there is ALWAYS going to be road blocks to your succuss. People will tell you you’re wasting your time and say “You don’t seriously think that stuff works, do you?” (especially because you’re 18, they think you won’t know any better), you’ll get frusterated or you’ll learn something discouraging and you will have plenty of those discouragements along the way. But don’t worry, that’s normal. Everyone goes through that. Even the successful investors. You have to make sure you get through every single discouragement you come across. And when you do get through those road blocks, it’s like winning.

I recently had one of the biggest discouragements since I started. I was talking to my father last week about school and moving out and starting my life. He acted like he didn’t trust me at all. I was so discouraged that it was the first time I had actually thought that Real Estate Investing was a waste of time. I felt like I had no future and was wasting my time just sitting around studying this stuff. Within a day or two that all changed. I studied some stuff on Lease/Options and now I think I’m the most motivated I’ve ever been, and the closest I’ve ever been to getting started, and WINNING!!!

The conversation with my Dad had given me motivation to prove him wrong. I WILL be succussful in this business and so will you, as long as you’re serious about it and take action.

Just make sure to keep a positive mind set, keep an open mind, push your way through every road block you encounter, and make sure you study!

Keep posting on this board, too. It has been the most helpful studying tool that I have encountered. You can ask any question and EXPERTS can answer it!

Make sure you come back, though. It would be nice to have someone younger than me on this board!

Jim C

Re: 18 year old investor - Posted by eric-fl

Posted by eric-fl on January 10, 2001 at 08:56:31:

If you have Web design experience, and can’t find work, I should think the first you’d do is move. You should be able to find plenty of work, and if you can’t, can other people in your area? Hint: if there aren’t any jobs where you are, there won’t be many home purchases either. Why not check out Minneapolis/St. Paul? Isn’t that like one of the 15 biggest MSA’s in the United States? I’d think that area would be swimming with opportunity in real estate.

Re: 18 year old investor - Posted by Keith (AL)

Posted by Keith (AL) on January 10, 2001 at 08:51:14:

You may also want to read some self improvement books to help keep you on a positive path. At 18 you already have an extraordinary head start on most of us as long as you don’t give up. I would highly recommend starting with “Rich Dad, Poor Dad” by Kiyosaki. This book will give you some very important advice that I wish I’d had when I was 18. Best of luck.

Re: 18 year old investor - Posted by Shenesa

Posted by Shenesa on January 10, 2001 at 08:33:48:

Success has no age! Read the How to articles and find your niche. Continue to read the post here and put them to action. Go to your local book store or library and pick up a book or two on what you want to focus on in real estate investing. If you have a real estate club in your area consider joining it.

Much Success,

No! - Posted by Jim IL

Posted by Jim IL on January 10, 2001 at 23:53:30:

No disrespect intended, but absolutely not!
Ryan can get there himself.
He could set that as his goal.
To make a deal to get there, and pay for EVERYTHING!
I know it can be done, because this was my goal for the convention two years ago.
I made it and so can he.
In fact, I made $10k+ on my first deal, paid for the convention, a ton of courses, a computer and STILL had $5k left over.
The experience at that convention was worth EVERY penny!
And then some.
So, Ryan, keep reading here, if you are reading this post.
And, get some courses/books, and apply.
There is plenty of time to make the money to attend.
A L/O or a flip deal could do that easily.

Rather than “Give Ryan a fish”, lets “Teach him to fish”, the lesson will pay him longer.

Have fun in Atlanta,
Jim IL

In regards to your problems with the architect - Posted by IB (NJ)

Posted by IB (NJ) on January 10, 2001 at 16:01:30:

and Contractors working for you: I’ve learned that it’s best to ONLY use contractors who have been referred by a fellow investor. And ONLY if that fellow investor can vouch for the contractor’s reliability and professionalism. Combine that referral with an air tight contract and a talk (face to face)with your contractor about how you expect him/her to show up on time and to provide quality work and you should be able to eliminate 90% of your problems. Just a suggestion. Good luck

EXCELLENT advice Ed! [nt] - Posted by SusanL.–FL

Posted by SusanL.–FL on January 10, 2001 at 11:56:13:


Re: 18 year old investor - Posted by Mark-NC

Posted by Mark-NC on January 10, 2001 at 11:07:59:

Hey Ed,
Great advice… good for any age!


Re: 18 year old investor - Posted by J.P. Vaughan

Posted by J.P. Vaughan on January 10, 2001 at 13:20:26:

Hi Jim,

Don’t generate negative energy trying to prove your
father wrong. Instead, create positive energy and prove
that you’re RIGHT!


You?re ?on the money?, Jim, when?. - Posted by SusanL.–FL

Posted by SusanL.–FL on January 12, 2001 at 12:22:07:

?you say ?see how motivated or ambitious the person truly is?.

In a couple instances in the past, I?ve had people come up to me and say, ?Gee HOW do you do that!??! I?d LOVE to get into real estate too. blah blah blah.? Excitement oozing out of their every pore.

Sooooo—I?ll loan them one of my ?beloved? r.e. books out of my own library?thinking I?m doing them a favor. The last time, I loaned out my Deals on Wheels. It took me
M-O-N-T-H-S to get it back—and the guy never even cracked it open. (He decided to go into drug dealing instead. It was easier. true story too)

Another time (years ago) I loaned out my proposal-writing ?encyclopaedia?. After a YEAR (of hounding the guy) I finally got it back. I also noticed the ?ring? indentation of a heavy potted plant that sat on top of the book (probably) the entire year!

I don?t loan my books out any more. I feel that if the person wants to learn bad enuf, he?ll scrape his pennies together (just like I had to do) and go buy the book himself. Nine times out of ten, I?m sorry to say, they don?t? Their loss?.

I’m disappointed… - Posted by Ben (NJ)

Posted by Ben (NJ) on January 11, 2001 at 13:41:36:

I thought there would be no better way to teach someone
to fish than to give them a once in a lifetime opportunity to get to the convention. I guess any ideas beyond typing a few words of encouragement and hitting the “send” button will be met with apathy. Sorry to get your hopes up, Ryan.