Work - Posted by Tony Colella

Posted by Tony Colella on July 24, 2011 at 21:04:58:

Back in my college years I was visiting a friend way out in farm country and we went to a small, family owned, corner restaurant in the middle of nowhere.

Both husband and wife owners were present, polite and well into retirement years. Behind the counter was a sign that read something like:

“We would rather wear out than rust away”

They worked hard and were happy to do it. Not everyone may be blessed with the health and I hope no no one will “have” to work but for those who are healthy I like that wear out motto myself.


Work - Posted by Tony Colella

Posted by Tony Colella on July 24, 2011 at 09:14:41:

I believe the great majority of us have come to this site in an effort to find the means to “quit our job.” Some disliked their current job, others like me just wanted to pursue a new dream.

When I chose the blue collar approach to investing, I did so with no such skills whatsoever. I didn’t even have a truck or tools at the time. The tools came one at a time and only after working with contractors and handymen as they made the repairs I needed done on the mobile homes. I would ask questions about how to make future repairs and why they chose the tools they did. I would then go and buy that tool or something similar.

My work on these properties was dirty and not something that would impress most people sitting around a table discussing “their investments.”

I did quit my job and I did create a business that provided for me and to be honest I never worked at it in a full time, 40 hour per week on the job capacity.

Back in the 90’s the motto seemed to be “ease of success.” I never bought into that. Success in anything came for me only through hard work and often physical work at that. That physical labor was for me the most rewarding. Because I never knew how to fix things I found great reward in knowing that I had made that repair. I knew how to do it, had the tools and paid only the cost of materials (yes my labor was not paid directly but rather in the form of continued rent).

The fear of something breaking became less and less of a concern and as we know if you are renting or selling mobile homes then things are going to break.

Somehow the 90’s left many with the idea that labor was dirty and low. Time was to be spent “putting deals together not fixing toilets.” I do see the logic in this. We don’t want to only make what it takes to fix a toilet but in truth I found that I did only a few toilet repairs in comparison to the other repairs. Forget not that I was working on MY properties not someone elses. I was improving MY assets and MY portfolio.

These labors never took me a full day or full week and I suspect I would be either more successful or more stressed had I worked at it 40 hours per week but I intended my efforts to provide me more time and fewer deals than most.

I don’t know why labor like this was viewed as “dirty” work since it took less than a full time job, offered a great deal of independence and free time and I reported to no one other than myself and the responsibilities to my tenants and properties.

If we want to quit our day jobs and are “willing to do whatever it takes,” then why do so may balk at the first signs of actual labor?

Meggido, a character from a favorite book of mine, “The Richest Man in Babylon” reminds us that work is our friend. The bible speaks in many places on the need for us to work. Mentally I think we get off center if we are not being productive; we are just wired that way.

Doing deals is necessary and is money making but working your way up is both rewarding and the experience provides a better leader.

Fear not the dirt or the work.

Tony Colella

Re: Work - Posted by shawn sisco

Posted by shawn sisco on July 24, 2011 at 20:37:01:

A lack of knowledge can be quite costly, but I have
noticed more failures brought on by arrogance, sloth
and a lack of diligence.
Frankly, when I hear or read someone speak of “I’m not
going to fix toilets” or some such haughty remark, I
figure they are soon to fail.
Now certainly, we all have different strengths and
abilities, and we must prioritize those many tasks; but
someone who thinks that they are too good to work- just
doesn’t get it.

Re: Work - Posted by Bernd Hanak

Posted by Bernd Hanak on July 24, 2011 at 11:05:15:

Work is our friend. It is the gyroscope that keeps us on an even keel in life. It is also an effective elixir during times of stress, frustration, and unpleasant personal challenges. It provides us with the sustenance for a satisfactory life. It is the expression of our thoughts as the primary for profit and progress. I view any activity- work- that is proclaimed as ?non-profit ?with suspicion. The revered humanitarian, Mother Theresa, described her charitable work in India as a ?profit ?oriented? venture. Her success speaks for itself. Both the Bible and The Richest Man in Babylon continually emphasize besides productive, profitable work, the logical precept or maxim: ?consume less than you produce and invest the savings?, a concept that is not popular with most people; it is totally rejected by most governing bodies in our world.

Re: Work - Posted by Dale Osborn

Posted by Dale Osborn on July 24, 2011 at 20:22:11:

For many people WORK is a 4-letter word that usually goes along with JOB. Having joined the military at 17, I planned for a retirement at 37. I keep telling my wife I am retired, but have done more WORK since getting out of the military. Twelve years with single family homes, ten years with apartment buildings, two years with an office building, and now eight years with MHPs it is time to start looking for something that invloves less WORK. Private lending or hard money loans sounds like something to try after we step out of MHPs. This will free up time to take off and travel more as well.