On this episode of the Business and BBQ podcast, Tim talks with Brad Sumrok, “The Apartment King”. Brad was in the “rat race” of corporate America for 17 years and he just never found fulfillment in his work, even when he started changing companies as a way of moving up the corporate ladder. Even when he was making $10,000 per month as an engineer with an MBA, he wasn’t satisfied and he couldn’t escape the thought that there had to be more out there worth doing.
All along, he had been saving 10% of his income for retirement and living below his means, just like he had been taught to, and when he finally reached the point in his career when he realized he didn’t want to be in the rat race anymore, he decided to use all of his savings for something other than retirement. He used it as a down payment on his first apartment building. For the next 3 years, he kept working on this side hustle and growing his wealth to the point where he had replaced his full-time income with his investment income. At this point, he was able to quit his full-time job and jump feet-first into real estate investing.
Now, Brad owns many apartment buildings, but since he doesn’t enjoy the daily ins and outs of being a landlord, all of his properties are managed by a third party. This leaves him with the time and energy he needs to commit to teaching others how to escape the rat race and work on their passion project full time. His company offers a free 40-minute training course online, weekend training sessions 3 times a year, and an annual conference featuring industry experts. This year’s annual conference is August 10th in downtown Dallas, and attendees will get to hear from speakers such as Robert Kiyosaki and Harry Dent.
Business over the past few years has been very good for Brad, which has freed him and his wife up to make sizable contributions to charities such as Chair the Love. He has also found significant personal and spiritual growth through the process of focusing on what he loves doing and delegating what he doesn’t enjoy so much. He encourages listeners to be open to the opportunities in front of them and to believe in what is possible.
“Rich Dad, Poor Dad” book: https://amzn.to/2XW2DFb
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Announcer: [00:00] You are listening to the the business and barbecue podcast hosted by Tim Herriage. Tim Herriage is an active entrepreneur who built and sold six companies by the age of 40 and enjoys at sharing the ups and downs of business and entrepreneur life. As for the barbecue, that’s just something he has a passion for and likes to share as well. Here’s your host, Tim Herriage,
Tim Herriage: [00:21] Alright alright. What’s cooking? Everybody? Tim Herriage here with another episode of the business and Barbecue podcast. Today I have my good friend Brad Sumrok joining us. Some people call him the apartment king. He has tee shirts that say some rock in, some don’t. We’re going to talk about leverage. We’re going to talk about quitting your corporate job. We’re going to talk about passive income. We’ll talk about having an action plan. We’ll talk about living below your means. We’ll talk about the difference between financial freedom and financial stability. We’ll talk about having goals. We’ll discuss syndications. Of course. We’ll talk some barbecue. Stick around. We’ll be right back. I cannot wait to introduce you to the prettiest man I’ve ever known today. Shows brought to you by audible. Audible is offering our listeners a free audio book with a 30 day trial membership. Just go to audible, trial.com/t h and browse the unmatched selection of audio programs. Download a free trial and start listening. It’s that easy. Go to audible trial.com/t h today. Get started with your free trial and claim your one free audio book. alright. All right, welcome back everybody. Tim Herriage here and I’ve got my good friend Brad Sumrok. Brad say hello.
Brad Sumrok: [01:29] Hello everybody. Hello Tim. I’m happy to be here
Tim Herriage: [01:32] man. I’m glad to have you on. Finally, I think you were the first or second guy I reached out to when I started doing this podcast. I could April, but uh, between your pro travels to South America and southern Europe and northern Europe and Florida and all over the world, you’re, you’re a hard guy to nail down.
New Speaker: [01:32]
Tim Herriage: [01:52] Well, here we are, man. Not too hard to nail down. I wanted to, just to start off, why don’t you tell a little bit of your story and talk a little bit about that, about
Brad Sumrok: [01:56] what the rat race is to you. Well, we’ll talk about the rat race first, cause that’s part of my story though. The rat race to me was like, you know, I worked in corporate America for 17 years and my parents taught me to study hard, get good grades, go to college, get a job, and move up in the company. And so my dream when I was young was to climb that corporate ladder. But I just never, I guess, you know, in corporate America I was told things like, you don’t work hard enough. You’re not management material. You don’t stay long enough. You don’t come in early enough, you don’t stay late enough, you don’t push yourself hard enough, you don’t have what it takes. And at the same time, I just felt like I just wasn’t really getting it. I wasn’t getting the money that I wanted to earn and I wasn’t getting the responsibility that I want it to have.
Brad Sumrok: [02:44] But I would show up every single day. You know, and I would get my three to four weeks, two weeks vacation, maybe three weeks, maybe four weeks after 15 years. Right. And I would put my mind in and I did what I thought was doing all the right things. And I thought I was working hard, but I was always told by my bosses that you ain’t, you know, you ain’t working hard enough. You ain’t work and fast enough you ain’t, you know, whatever. So the way I was able to move up was by changing companies and every so many years I would change companies and I would get a promotion. I would get an increase in responsibility, I would get more money and then I would go back to school because that’s what they told you. You, you know, you need more training, you need more education once you get an MBA will give you this job or he’ll give you this amount of money.
Brad Sumrok: [03:24] And so to me, I did that for 17 years and it was unfulfilling. I never really found my groove, you know, meaning I wasn’t really passionate about what I was doing. And there was never really a light at the end of the tunnel for me and I just had this never ending feeling that is this all there is? And so to me that’s the rat race is like, and if you think about the picture of a rack running in a wheel that maybe you’ve seen online or in my seminars or whatever, this constant spinning, but there’s not really an end to it. And Robert Kiyosaki’s even has that game called cashflow where your goal is to get out of the rat race and you get out of one wheel and you get onto the path of you know, the rich. And so it takes an effort to get off that wheel because a body in motion stays in motion and sometimes the easiest thing to do is just keep going and work every day and praying that somehow things are going to be different or praying you’re going to get that promotion or praying that you’re going to have this breakthrough in your job.
Brad Sumrok: [04:20] And obviously for some people they get it because some people were CEOs of fortune 500 companies and love what they do and they find fulfillment and passion and freedom and income. And for most of us that are cogs in the wheel, that doesn’t happen for us. And so they’re needed. For me, there needed to be a different way for me to, to have the freedom and fulfillment and the, you know, the satisfaction and the income and this freedom and security that I was looking for. And that was by getting out of corporate America.
Tim Herriage: [04:47] So last week I was on a coaching call with someone that’s kind of a mentor of mine and he made the statement, it was a John Rockefeller quote. Sometimes you have to be willing to give up the good to go for the great, right? And I think that’s kind of applicable because you were an educated guy. You were an engineer, right? I was an engineer. Yeah. So the engineers don’t make pennies, right? You guys make dollars. So I mean, what was that process like, Brad? I mean, just walk the listeners through that. Jumping off the plank so to speak. What does that like to go from the W2 married to a paycheck and the, like you said, maybe get promoted, maybe get your vacation to actually hearing about something new and then educating yourself enough to where you were ready to take that leap.
Brad Sumrok: [05:31] Yeah, and one thing I just want to say is I didn’t take a cold Turkey leap from having 10,000 my income at the time was around 10,000 a month. And so point number one is that I didn’t have a lot of empathy when I would go and tell my mom and my dad did, I hated my job and I wasn’t happy and I didn’t feel fulfilled and I felt like I was a cog in the wheel and they would just say, well, how much money do you make? And I made twice as much as my dad and my parents couldn’t relate to my empathetic situation. You know, they were like, just look at your paycheck man side. You’re doing great. You have so much to be thankful for. Just count your blessings. So you need to go to somebody besides your parents because, or your or your peers.
Brad Sumrok: [06:14] You know, I would tell my friends at work, ah, you know, nothing’s ever gonna Change. I mean just, I just felt like a robot coming into work every day. And again, a lot of them didn’t have that same feeling and many of them are still in their jobs and some of them are happy and some of them are happy. I mean, how many people were really happy and fulfilled in their job? You know? So to me it was finding role models outside of corporate America. Like at the end of the day, every boss that I ever had, and I loved a lot of my bosses and I hated some of them, my bosses truthfully, but even the bosses that I really liked, I looked at them objectively and I would say, Hey, do I want the life that they have? And I couldn’t find any boss that I really wanted the life that they had except one.
Brad Sumrok: [06:55] But that’s because his wife was an entrepreneur and they, you know, tons of money and it had all this freedom. And so like he had no pressure at his job, you know, and I’m like, man, I want to be like that. But it wasn’t him and it was a, it was his wife because she like was an entrepreneur. Right. And so to me it was all about having a vision. And that’s why I credit like Rich Dad, poor dad so much because that book gave me the vision of wanting to be a business owner and an investor. And up until then there’s seminars, there’s mentorship, there’s all these things. And I sought out that. But if I didn’t have the, the idea or the mindset shifts, I don’t never went to a seminar that was skeptical. I was an engineer with an MBA. I mean, how could you be more skeptical than that?
Brad Sumrok: [07:38] Right, right. So, yeah, you know, the mindset is very powerful. And I still have friends on Facebook. Some of them might be listening now from high school and college that they’re, I know they’re unhappy. Some of them reached out to me personally and asked, you know, how they could get started investing. And, and yet most of them, I don’t think any of them have ever done it or came to any of my seminars or on to anybody’s seminar for that matter, or hired any sort of mentor for that matter. And they just keep doing the same thing because they have this fear of doing something different. And there’s this, and so the answer 10 is you don’t have to go cold Turkey. I mean, I started investing for three years. I invested in apartments and just like playing the cashflow game, I didn’t quit my job until I came very close to replacing my income.
Brad Sumrok: [08:23] And so even though I didn’t have benefits, like, you know, in 2005 when I quit my job, I had no medical plan and I had no paid vacation, but I had income coming in from the apartment buildings that I own. Plus I knew that I had the skillset. And so I knew that I could just continue in growing as an investor. And so I felt the confidence to be able to walk away from my job. And I tell people that they’re like, hey, people are like Brian, I just quit my job and now I’m coming to your seminar. And I’m like, oh my God. Like get your job back. Like, cause I read a really sad story about a year ago on bigger pockets and it was about these two guys. They quit their jobs and they started the fund and they were looking for deals and never bought anything.
Brad Sumrok: [09:00] And after two years they ran out of money and then he had to go back to work. But they talked about how much they learned through the process and how fulfilling it was. And I’m like, well it can’t be that fulfilling. You’re back at your job and you are unsuccessful. So to me, I would say like, I mean look man, if you’d been working for 17 years, suck it up and keep your job for a little bit longer and start investing now and start a plan to replace your income. Because I think just about anybody could replace their income within five years or less.
Tim Herriage: [09:29] So you said you quit your job in 2005 when did first find apartment investing and start actually investing in apartments 2002 and so in 2002 you must have had a relative die and give you a bunch of money to get you started, right?
Brad Sumrok: [09:45] Oh yeah. Daddy Trump just gave me a bunch of money. Well, you’ll see if you remember, I was working in corporate America for 17 years and so I did all the right things, like save my money, live below my means, invest in the 401ks and IRAs and stuff like that. So after 17 years of working from the age of 22 until, well, at the time I was 35 when I bought my first building, I had already saved enough money for a down payment and I wasn’t doing that for 13 years intentionally. But that’s how I was living my life because that Penn, my plan was, they talk about, you’ve seen the examples. If you start saving when you’re in your 20s out of the compounding of fact, you’ll have, you know, maybe a couple of million dollars if you put 10% of your income away for the next 45 years. So that was my plan and I followed that plan.
Tim Herriage: [10:34] So you keep, you’ve said the word plan probably 10 times already in our short time. And you are an engineer by education, not by trade. And so obviously engineers can plan, well just, I’m going to go back to plans in a minute, but real quick, how’d you kept saving that 10% and feeding the 401k, which basically is just a, in my opinion, and Kiyosaki would tell you who’s your probably on a first name basis with Robert Kiyosaki here 15 years later he would tell you that that’s just a big shell game. Give them your money back in their stocks. Right? But what do you think, Brad, you think that money would be worth a 10th of what it is now? Uh, I mean, how’d you left it in the system? So to,
Brad Sumrok: [11:14] I mean like I would just say this for the average person and the average person is not the person that’s listening to this episode because the average person right now, it’s five o’clock central time, they left work early in, they’re either sitting in traffic or at the bar for a happy hour already complaining about how miserable their job in their life is. And it’s Monday and they, I have like two more days till Hump Day and four more days till TGI half. Right. So the average person who needs to be listening to what I’m about to say, they ain’t listening to this, right. Where there’d be, it wouldn’t be out. It wouldn’t be average. But for the average person, I mean, I think that buying a home and which you didn’t even ask me about that. I talking to my wife about this the other day and we’re talking to like just, you know, friends of ours that are like, you know, they’re not average.
Brad Sumrok: [11:59] Like, I mean, they’re beautiful people and their heart and everything, but they’re average financially and they’re average in their mindset and we try to influence them. But like say I’ll just talk about retirement and four zero one ks and IRAs and buying a house. And the truth is, the sad thing is I think for the average person that doesn’t open up their mind and take actions to get educated and be an entrepreneur or business owner, for example, as a real estate investor, that’s probably good advice because most of these people are going to be broke if they don’t do that. I mean, so I would say like, you know, look, if you’re not an engineer and if you’re not an accountant and you’re listening to this and you have no idea where to start, go to a seminar, invest in your education. But I would also say just start page. People ask me, Brad, how did he get to 200,000 down for your first building? Well, I paid 10% I put 10% aside from the very beginning when I was 22 my first paycheck, I put 10% of my money aside.
Tim Herriage: [12:48] It’s just important. I always try to point these type of things out because too often in order for people to tell themselves they can’t do what they’re hearing, they say, well, this guy was given money, which we’ve already addressed that. Or they say that this is a get rich quick scheme scheme. Right. And like to me, everything I’m hearing you say is about having a plan, having an action plan and taking action and talk a little bit real quick, Brad, because I see this, I think this is the probably the number one problem in America. I read the other day that most people above the age of 60 only have like the majority of Americans only have like $15,000 or something like that. Talk about that decision to live below your means and any advice you could give someone that’s listening, you know, hey, there’s, there’s people listening, maybe struggling, they have bigger desires, but they’re just not there yet.
Brad Sumrok: [13:35] Well, I have a lot of mixed thoughts about all this because number one is living below your means and saving your money is not going to get you to an abundant financial life. Everything you’ve been taught by the newspaper and the media and you know, like my parents that were middle class about saving your money and living below your means, that’s not going to get you abundance financially. Or let’s say you’re not going to get millions of dollars fast and not, this is not a get rich quick scheme, but like that plan may get you to some sort of financial freedom over a 40 year period. Okay. And
Tim Herriage: [14:10] financial freedom or financial stability.
Brad Sumrok: [14:12] Well see, well maybe not even financial freedom unit. You put it this way, you may be able to work until you’re 70 years old and then live off your nest egg and not run out of money. Like my dad is 82 and he worries about running out of money every day. And I could talk about my dad and my family because they’re not on social media, so they’re not listening to this. But my dad’s not going to run out of money. He still lives at 82 is if he’s going to run out of money, you know, and he’s not sitting on millions of dollars, but he still has a balance in there and it’s earning a return and he’s withdrawing more than he’s earning. But I mean unless he lives to 140 or something, he’s probably going to be okay. But he has constant fear and every decision he makes, even in 82 is how much something cost.
Brad Sumrok: [14:57] And so to me, yeah, I misspoke. That’s not financial freedom. That just might be some sense of of absolute like basic financial security where deep down he’s an intelligent person and he probably knows that he’s always going to be able to pay for housing and food and electric. You know what I’m saying? But he doesn’t spend money on luxuries because he’s afraid that money isn’t going to be there. So that’s why I said I have mixed thoughts about this stuff because I would say if you’re doing absolutely nothing else, obviously if you’re not learning about business or real estate and you’re just living the good old Charlie life and just going to work and spending your money, while it’s better to live below your means and above and your mains, if you want to get ahead financially right now, it’s better to live below your means and save your money and buy a house if that’s your only form of equity building and savings and all that type of stuff, but it’s not the optimal form because what you really want to focus on is you want to focus on increasing your income and not decrease.
Brad Sumrok: [15:51] Not Living below your means. Living below your means isn’t that fun. It’s not fun. Like, I actually think we’re, we’re put on this earth for a higher purpose, whether that’s to contribute to other people or you have spiritual beliefs or whatever. But it’s been, I think part of what we’re here for is to also enjoy the process, to actually enjoy your life. And it’s not fun if they’re always worried about money. It’s not fun if you’re always living below your means. And one thing to me is like, people have said to me, Tim, like, Oh Brad, you’re kind of show off the like people, first of all the pictures I post on my car, they’re actually my car. So I’m not like getting pictures of other people’s cars, you know? But the point is, it’s like when somebody meets a millionaire and says, hey, this guy’s worth $100 million and he drives the same truck and lives in the same house.
Brad Sumrok: [16:36] I don’t know if that’s, I don’t have a positive feeling about that because that person isn’t contributing to society. You know? It’s like, I’m not saying you gotta be show off, Hey, but it’s like if nobody flew first class and paid for these tickets, the air, most of the airlines, unless they’re a low cost airlines, they wouldn’t be in business cause the first class seats subsidized in the whole rest of the flight. Right. If nobody bought a luxury car, I mean where would Mercedes-Benz Mercedes, you know, Tesla, Rolls Royce, BMW, Aston Martin, all these people would be out of work. Grant Cardone was criticized for buying a Rolls Royce in an airplane. But it’s like there are people that actually go to work and their airplane mechanics. And so what about all those people? What about the people that work at Tiffany’s and Louis Vuitton and I know you shop at Tiffany’s 10 cause I saw you there.
Tim Herriage: [17:19] I do, I do. Not for myself, but uh, my Jennifer who has good tastes as well. So the point is it’s like if you just
Brad Sumrok: [17:26] for and all your money and you’re not like, there is some good about spending the money that you earn and putting it back into the economic cycle of the country.
Tim Herriage: [17:35] I mean, I completely agree and I’m someone that’s all about abundance. And somebody once asked here recently, September, what are you trying to do with this podcast? Are you, how are you gonna make money doing that? I was like, I don’t know. For me it’s sharing this journey that I’ve been on and some of the Self I’ve had and some of the mistakes I’ve made because I made plenty of mistakes. But let’s talk about mistakes because you talked about a plan, you talked about an action plan and a couple of weeks ago, my wife Jennifer, and your wife’s name is Jennifer as well. And I sat down and we kinda came up with this 18 month plan were we’ll never flip another house again because I hate flipping houses. It’s like, I guess I shouldn’t say this every week on the podcast, but it’s the world’s worst job and it’s just way too much time and energy and it’s definitely not the good life.
Tim Herriage: [18:18] So, you know, we’re kind of in this plan of phasing that out or out of our income, increasing our rental income. And you know I was in a rat race, but it’s interesting. The rat race I was in was kind of glamorous. People come to melts on, oh I want to flip houses like you, Tim, can you show me how? But it’s still a rat race, right? You got to wake up every morning and answer your phone and do what they need you to do or you don’t get paid and you don’t have any money so you’re in apartments, you are known as the apartment team. You have some cool tee shirts and say some rock and some don’t, which I need a tee shirt. Brad, let’s talk about or ask for one before I haven’t, but I’m going to come to your event that you have in August, the week before my rei mastermind and I’m going to get me a tee shirt.
Tim Herriage: [18:56] Let’s talk a little bit about kind of the alternative investment space because really before you and some other folks like you, apartment investing was either hyperlocal for small mom and pops in like small classes, class B or seed or d units or it was for the really big guys and people like you have brought it kind of the middle class. Why don’t you talk about your upcoming conference and the Brad Sunroc apartment mastery program and and just some of the things that you do to help others. I won’t say have a beach house and I don’t even know what kind of cars you host. I just think they look old. I would never drive one. I like my big attitude Ft. But you’re F two 50 probably cost as much or more than my car. It probably did. But let’s talk a little bit about apartments and why apartments and maybe some of these upcoming events in, in ways that people can connect with. You mean we really kind of skipped all the way over your business and started talking about a lawsuit.
Brad Sumrok: [19:54] Yeah. So I mean, here’s the thing, like my goal when I started was to replace my income and back in oh two I did a real quick analysis and I thought, you know, and say my income was 10,000 a month, which is was about what it was. So I figured I need like 40 or 50 rental houses in order to make consistent cashflow over about 10,000 a month. And that just seemed like a lot of rental houses. And so to me it just made sense to do multifamily and have more units under one roof. So that was my initial decision. But some of the things I wasn’t aware of that I’m much more keenly aware of now is like, you know, you have more economies of scale, meaning like you buy a 60 unit apartment building, you get hire a property management company, they put a full time manager and maintenance person on the property.
Brad Sumrok: [20:39] So like I’m not a landlord Tim. I mean I buy large apartment buildings and hire and manage third party companies to run them for me. And so the truth is investing for me and I’ve done over 4,200 you’re going to, investing for me always has been somewhat of a part time activity for me and it still is. So I’ve always looked like I don’t have an apartment investing company. I have an apartment education and mentoring company where we have 17 people. But in my investments I have invested and I have always bought apartment businesses large enough to support a staff. So I didn’t have to be in the property management business, I didn’t have to be in the lending business. And as I grew with an investor, I would buy bigger and bigger deals and, and use other people’s money and a little bit of my own to buy even bigger deals.
Brad Sumrok: [21:28] And then I started partnering with other people that we’d even do all the paperwork and the asset management and everything for me. So like I have always been a leveraged investor and I can’t say passive because I’m not 100% passive, but I’ve always able to use leverage, whether it’s other people’s time to run the properties or other people’s experience to like, you know, I did, I did five deals with one of my partners, Michael Becker and his company, and he has a whole apartment investing company as an acquisitions guy, has an operations guy as a construction guy, as an accountant. And he’s got admin people that like take the paperwork from all the investors and organize it and do all the key ones for everybody. So I don’t have to do that because there was a time when I was just syndicating my own deals and I was sending out like 50 k ones to all my investors and it was a lot of work and I didn’t want to work that hard as an investor.
Brad Sumrok: [22:19] So I work hard every day in my education and training business because it’s passionate, I’m passionate about it and it doesn’t feel like work to me. So what I work on that business. Yeah. There are times when, honestly, there are times I feel like I’m in the rat race cause I’m like, Oh man, I got like, like we had an outage in our CRM system the other day and I’m like, oh man. I’m like, yeah, this isn’t fun. I’m like, I gotta fix this. Right? Because we needed to run our business. But like for the most part, like teaching people and coming up with training videos and content and coaching students on buying their deals and seeing them succeed, that’s not worked for me. It’s fine. You know, it’s like going to a Tony Robbins event and you see how excited he gets up on stage and it’s like that. So that’s the business that I work in actively all the time. And investing for me even now is still somewhat of a part time thing.
Tim Herriage: [23:03] So do you think, and I’m going somewhere with this, do you think you enjoy walking a potential acquisition property more or do you think you enjoy getting on a stage in front of a thousand people more? Well,
Brad Sumrok: [23:14] I don’t think I know well, which isn’t, well it’s, it’s teaching other people because if I, I mean put it this way, it’s really simple. If you just look at what has been the primary focus in my life the past seven or eight years, I have friends that of years bought 5,000 units and that was their focus and I bought over 4,000 units. Been in 17 years. So like I’ve gone really slow buying apartment buildings actually because my main focus over the past, you know, even since 2005 when I retired, my main focus was actually helping other people be successful investors. It’s fulfilling to me and you know, like some of my mentors like Tony Robbins, they talk about like, you know, what makes people do what they do and it’s things like feeling important, feeling a sense of helping other people, feeling connected to what it is that you’re doing and having variety and your dangly activities.
Brad Sumrok: [24:01] You know, he talks about certainty, he talks about variety, it’s talks about growth, contribution, significance, connection. And like when you look at that, I’m like, oh my God. Like do an apartment training and mentoring. It meets all of those needs. I mean I work with all different types of people from all different backgrounds and countries and languages and cultures and there’s always a curve ball being thrown at me every day. But it’s like it’s exciting and they’re like buying a deal. It’s like I’m buying a deal right now and I’m like doing the loan application. Like I’m going through like a 10 page loan application. I mean how freaking exciting is that? Seriously? How exciting is it to go to the bank and why are 12,580 day and read a 10 page
Tim Herriage: [24:36] one document. It’s not fun at all. And I spent half my afternoon today going through these 10 houses that Jennifer and I are about to refinance because we’re big believers in leverage as well. And you know, just trying to figure out how do you want to pull a couple of hundred out, how much do you want to pull out? But you know, it’s funny, there’s this tool, I forget who made it. It may have been a Tony Robbins tool, but it’s, they say, take both of your talent and your passion for whatever it is you’re doing and write it on a scale of one to 10 and then add it up. Right? And so like for flipping houses or for real estate, for me, my talents, like a 10, right? I mean, I’m really good at, but my passion for, it’s like a one, uh, when we talked a little bit about barbecue earlier, my talents, like a five or a six, I’m not some sort of like wonderful pitmaster food judge, but my passion Ford’s a tent.
Tim Herriage: [25:24] You know what I mean? I just, I love it. And when you add that up, right, that’s a 16 and so you’ll be more, I’m more fulfilled in life when I’m working on that. My passion for sharing information with others, like just like you really is the reason I started the expo. It’s the reason I start the podcast. I think I’m pretty good at it. I’d give myself about a six, maybe a seven, but my passions a 10 right? So when I do this type of thing, it makes me feel so good that it makes that other stuff kind of worth it to pay the bills, you know?
Brad Sumrok: [25:52] Yeah. And don’t get me wrong. Like, I mean, I still invest in apartments. I’m buying a deal right now. It’s going to put 400,000 a year in cashflow in my pocket and save me a million in taxes. And so I love the result of buying apartment buildings, but it’s into me. I love the result of buying apartment buildings. And I don’t want to say this, but the truth is I don’t love the daily, you know, and there’s a lot of grind activity involved in buying apartments and especially my God, if I had to manage them, that’s why I use third party management companies to manage them
Tim Herriage: [26:19] well. It’s the same conversation I had with my son the other day. You know, he leaves for college in three weeks and you know, he’s going through that phase of he’s going to have to get up at [5:00] AM every day so that for his football workouts and then he’s going to have to go to class all day. And I just told him, I said, you know, you can focus on the process or you can focus on the race. Right. And the reason he’s doing that is he wants to play college football and he wants to get a degree. So it’s, I tell all the time, you may not enjoy every moment of it, but do what you gotta do so that you can enable some of your other desires. Like for you and Jennifer, I think I saw y’all were in Haiti building an orphanage recently or where were you? Ecuador. Ecuador. I’m going to completely shift gears and we’ll come back to the conference and everything. Talk about your, some of the things that, I won’t use the cliche term being financially free, but some of the rewards personally that you’ve gotten from kind of opening up this new income stream, this new business. I mean you do this stuff in Ecuador. Talk a little bit about your travels and that type of thing.
Brad Sumrok: [27:14] Yeah. So you know, first thing I want to say is I never thought I would be speaking on stage and having the privilege to teach thousands and thousands of people the essentials of, of apartment investing. And I never in my loudest dreams thought I would have even the ability to contribute large amounts of money to a charity. And when I first started, I thought all I simply wanted to do was replace my job income with investment income so I could have more freedom in my life. That’s all I really wanted to do. And you’ve probably heard the cliche that once you hit a goal, the next thing you do is you set new goals. I, that’s not that. You know, and at some point, maybe you don’t do that, that. And so because as human beings, there’s a need for us to continue to growing all the time for most of us.
Brad Sumrok: [27:56] And so when my first goal financially was to replace my job income, you know, then it was to make a half million a year, then it was to make a million a year, then it was to hire an employee. Now we have a team of 17 people and we train, you know, thousands of people a year. Six people say, well when’s enough enough? But the thing is as long as I’m enjoying, like I’m growing as a person solving these problems and hiring people and figuring out how to add more value in a constantly there, there’s some things that I don’t enjoy, but overall like I am growing so much as a person. And there’s like this spiritual component where like you could see the fruits of everything that you’re doing and how it’s changing people’s lives. And so one of the things that happen, how we got into charity, well first my wife always wanted to get into charity and she had a passion for helping kids and said when we started to have more financial means, we started thinking about charities that we could support.
Brad Sumrok: [28:46] And then what really happened for us is our attacks as men from 900,000 to zero. And because we hired a really good accountant and so, and Trump changed the tax laws, right? And so you could get more of the creation faster. And that’s a big deal for us apartment and bet big, big deal. So one of my goals in the past was to pay $1 million in taxes. And once I found out I didn’t need to pay $1 million in taxes and I could actually earn more money and pay less taxes, and I was like, we’ve got to give $1 million to charity. And so I said it and then I looked at my wife, I’m like, oh my God, now we act like moving into June. So like we found some charities that we really resonated with and one of them is an organization called share the love.
Brad Sumrok: [29:26] And the, the thing I like about it is like my mom died from Alzheimer’s and I thought about like backing up that dementia or Alzheimer’s foundation, they’re like, I don’t know where the money goes. And so with the wheelchair, like I know that if I contribute $150 will buy the one wheelchair and that one wheelchair will have a human being sitting in it. And I’ll change that person’s life for 150 bucks. And it’s like their whole family cause the people that care for them. And so that’s just the charity that we really got behind. And since then we’ve contributed over $100,000 to share the love and we continue to raise money for them. And there’s some other charities now that we’ve come across it, we’d like to support as well. So I think that and just another year or two, hopefully we’ll reach our goal of contributing $1 million to charity. And we use our platform to allow other people the opportunity to contribute. So when we do seminars, we always have a charity component to our seminars and whether they become students of ours or not, or you know, learn apartment investing or not, we give people the opportunity to, to contribute to a charity. And so that’s something that is really important now to me in my life. And it never started off that way for me. But now it’s like one of my core values.
Tim Herriage: [30:37] Man. That’s awesome. So I don’t want to run up too far against the wire. Let’s talk a little bit about if someone’s listening and everything in mind. I could do that, right? If I had that money, I would do that. I mean, I know we have Brad sunroc.com we’ll put the link in the show notes and I think you’ve got a home study course. You’ve got a couple of days seminars, you’ve got your big national convention coming up. Talk about different things that you offer to help people dip their toe in this apartment.
Brad Sumrok: [31:02] Yeah, well I’ll make it real simple. So if you go to Brad sunroc.com and there’s no c in my last name, you’ll see, like he said, we have a home study course without the home study course is like, yeah, we even have a free 40 minute training course. The best way to get engaged though, if you really want to not look, we’re not lacking information in this world, like with the Internet and books. And and Neela apps, there’s so much information out there about how to invest. There’s so much information out there about how to invest in apartments, but what we’ve created when people come to where weekend trainings is not just the information but the demonstration of the whole infrastructure, that’s really essential to enable someone to really be successful. So if you want to syndicate a deal, you need to have investors, but where else could you go?
Brad Sumrok: [31:44] And you can meet 600 potential investors in a weekend. Where else could you go that you’re going to meet? The lenders, the attorneys, the insurance companies, the providers that I personally work with and then many of my students already work with and I’ve already been vetted. So it’s really a whole ecosystem, a whole infrastructure of everything. Somebody needs to be successful as an apartment investor, business owner, and that’s what you get in our weekend seminars. And it’s far, far more than just information, although there is fantastic information there, but some people were like, oh Brad, I just want to read a book online, or I just want a recipe. If buying an apartment building was as simple as a recipe, then I could just create a recipe like this and say, here’s my recipe. But the problem is there’s no deal that goes exactly according to recipe.
Brad Sumrok: [32:30] It’s not reality. Like every deal is going to have a curve ball or multiple curve balls. And so that’s where having that human experience and having unique ecosystem of people that can help you get through these curve balls so that you can be successful no matter what the challenge is, is what we’ve created in our program. And so that’s happening. We do those three times a year, July, November and March. And those events always have over 600 people, or at least have for the past a year or so. I mean obviously when we started, we didn’t have 600 people, but now we’re averaging six to 700 people three times a year. And then last year for the first time we wanted to do an annual conference that would appeal to not just apartment investors, although it’s geared toward apartment investors. But this is an event where we wanted to bring in some of the best speakers in the planet.
Brad Sumrok: [33:16] So like last year we brought in grant Cardone and you know, he’s a big social media influencer and he started off as a sales trainer and he still makes a lot of his money selling sales training tools and technologies. But he started investing his money in multifamily around five or six years ago and now he owns about five or 6,000 doors. And so he was a huge influencer when it comes to multifamily. We had him last year, we’re going to have Robert Kiyosaki this year we’re going to have Tom Wheelwright who advises Robert on taxes and he’s also my personal accountant and he only has 50 clients a year. We’re going to have Harry Dent who’s like in the economist and he talks about market cycles and demographics. And wouldn’t you want to know like how market cycles in demographics might impact your investments in the next two to five years? I mean, I sure do. That’s why I’m bringing Harry there. So the national conference is a different type of event where it’s not me teaching, it’s me just bringing in some of the best educators on the planet so that you could walk away with, with big picture ideas of how investing in apartments is inherent, not just for me, but here at being a Robert Kiyosaki invest in apartments. All the speakers either invest in apartments or support people that invest in heart.
Tim Herriage: [34:23] So I’m looking on your website right now. It looks like the next r two r which is rat race to retirement is July 20th and 21st. Does that sold out yet?
Brad Sumrok: [34:32] Uh, it’s not sold out. Bet It will be by the time the again is over. I think we have about 50 seats left for that event. And,
Tim Herriage: [34:40] and then on August 10th you have the national convention. Is that have more capacity?
Brad Sumrok: [34:45] It does. That ballroom has a pretty large capacity because Robert Kiyosaki is coming and we expect to have, well, I mean last year we had 800 people we expect to have over that amount this year.
Tim Herriage: [34:56] All right. And that’s August 10th in downtown Dallas. If I remember correct. That’s correct. And so I mean, you know, and you’re not trying to get rich on these tickets, right? I mean, I see tickets for less than a hundred bucks to the national convention and I mean as someone that was also influenced by Robert Kiyosaki’s rich dad poor dad book, when I got out of the Marine Corps, one of my gunnery sergeants actually gave it to me, you know, Robert was a marine as well. And to get to hear him in person for less than a hundred bucks is worth the price of the ticket alone. You add in some of these other folks and it’s definitely worth it. We’ll put some links down in the notes, but I’m Brad, I want to talk about leverage and syndication and then I’m going to kind of take this thing home because you talked about leverage and leveraging other people’s money, leveraging debt, leveraging other people’s, and then you talked about syndication. And I know some of the audience may or may not know what a syndication is. So just real quickly say what a syndication,
Brad Sumrok: [35:44] well, in layman’s terms, the syndication is when you get a group of people together and everyone puts in some money and then you go out together and buy a property. You know in this case in apartment building,
Tim Herriage: [35:56] I wanted to bring that up because like if you’re listening to this, I’m telling you, I have seen apartment deals that put out 20 and 30% annual returns that you could have gotten into for 50 grand. And I say that because I know a lot of people here apartment and they’re picturing the 7,000 unit play’s being built down in uptown, the blue seal, high raw, you know, they’re picturing these crazy developments and I just want to be really clear that if you have the right network and you meet the right people and you can leverage their experience and their contacts and you can form in person bonds, the opportunities will be in.
Brad Sumrok: [36:32] That’s absolutely correct. I mean the people that come to our weekend training and all ever looking at apartment building the same again, you’ll, if you’re in Dallas and you’re listening to this and you know, I, I know Facebook is all over the world and the country I like just going through any major city in Dallas as an example, if you drive through Irving or Arlington or garland or just about anywhere, you’ll see these two or three story buildings that they were built in the 1960s seventies and eighties and you’ll never look at them the same again. Cause like me, I used to think, well these are all owned by large companies and multi, multi zillionaire people. And the reality is they’re owned by people just like us. And even if they’re bigger ones, damn like their, their rates on these and you know, rates, they publicly raise money through their securities process and, and people could put 50s you know, I don’t know what the minimum investments are.
Brad Sumrok: [37:18] Each rate might be a little different depending on the fund. But once you learn that it’s not one person that’s buying these buildings and it’s groups of people just like us, they’re going out and buying these businesses. And so what’s amazing is you can be a passive investor in an apartment business. And when I say apartment building, I mean a apartment building. It’s a business. You’re buying a piece of land, you’re buying the building and you’re buying the income stream that’s coming in from the tenants. And you can be an investor. Anybody out there could be an investor in these types of deals and it doesn’t take a lot of money to get involved.
Tim Herriage: [37:51] I always say that real estate is the best investment there is. I mean the tax code is definitely in the favor of the real estate owner in the larger the real estate. The more that it’s in your favor. And I’ll just say that it’s an inflation indexed annuity with an underlying asset base that appreciates. And that’s the beautiful thing about what we’re talking about here is not only is it replacing your monthly income, you’re doing it with an asset that goes up in value over time, at least in step with inflation, sometimes more. If I could get half of Americans to just own some real estate, I think we’d pick social security in about 10 minutes.
Brad Sumrok: [38:22] Yeah. And the thing is when we talk about getting out of the rat race, that was one of my, still is one of my slogans or mantras [inaudible] you know, retire in five, you know, I have tee shirts that say retire and Bob, I mean I got out of the race in three years from investing in apartments and I was just a regular guy that sought out education and went out and took action and that’s what we all have other people do. So we have, you know, it’s, it’s entirely possible if you’re sitting there listening right now. I would just say that the only thing getting in the way is if there is anything getting in the way is yourself and your own disbelief and what’s possible because it’s virtually impossible from where you’re sitting right now within three weeks to go out and buy a hundred unit apartment building. But it’s entirely possible to do that within a 12 month period. Right. You know, people think like, Hey, I just like to be able to do something over a 12 month period or a 60 month period is entirely possible too. Whether it’s making $1 million or quit your job or you’re getting ready to retire yourself from your job or you get your spouse out of her job or his job. I mean we have so many people that have done this like hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of people, so I know it can be done and I did it myself
Tim Herriage: [39:30] and I’ve met a lot of them and that’s good stuff. Brad, we’re a post the legs to these two events in the Dallas area in the next 35 days. If you’re out of the Dallas area, you should definitely just go ahead and mark it on your calendar. August 10th I’m to Dallas here, Robert Kiyosaki. There’s some, a lot of good information on brides website and like I said, we’ll send out the link. Brad, why don’t you go ahead and give everybody the best rate or way to reach you is website phone number. What do you want? What do you want to get?
Brad Sumrok: [39:54] Well, there’s two ways. The best way to get information about our company is on our website, Brad sunroc.com and there’s a contact us on there. So there’s even like all of our programs are on there. I mean Tim, we’ve launched a mastermind for experience department owners. We have a tab for our mastermind. We have an application for our mastermind. We have tabs for applying for personal mentoring. So our website is going to be the best one-stop-shop to look at everything that we have to offer. And then I would just say if you have specific questions, email our support team, which me and my wife get the support emails and we also have a team of people, but I mean we see the emails that come in and so if they just email firstname.lastname@example.org and again there’s no c in my last name, so that’s the best way to like ask a specific question. Then we have a team of people that that work, you know we have a team of 17 people. Some of these people are dedicated to support, so that’s the best way to get specific questions answered about what we offer and our offerings and how things work and which program might be right for you or which event is right for you. It’s like just do it.
Tim Herriage: [40:57] That’s right man. Again, the our to our events coming up in about two weeks and about 30 days from now, 35 days from now is the national convention and we’ll post it down on the show notes. We’ll also send out an email about it and we’re going to wrap up, talk about that. And I’m going to take a quick break and then we’ve got gotta talk about barbecue. Start collecting more leads in minutes. Not only do I use hubspot’s free CRM, but I also use their free marketing tools. Start turning visitors into leads today. Sign up for free at hubspot.com/t h with hubspot marketing free. You’ll have everything you need to convert more visitors into leads. Sign up for free today and it’s free forever. No contract or credit card required. It’s a risk free way to see what inbound marketing can do for you. Start turning visitors into leads today. Sign up for email@example.com slash [inaudible] we’re back. So Brad, do you eat barbecue? I do eat barbecue. What’s your favorite barbecue?
Brad Sumrok: [41:47] Well I, I’m going to express my ignorance in this subject and I would just say beef with some good kind of barbecue sauce. I don’t know, odd Breskit or something
Tim Herriage: [41:56] rescue man. So I’ll tell you what, I’m going to have to take you through some good barbecue you live like Kinda down by downtown. There’s three or four great places within 10 minutes. Cause the only time you’ve ever went to lunch with me, you took me to like a really healthy Greek place over off of 75 and we’re not doing that next time. Next time it’s full on Texas.
Brad Sumrok: [42:18] Oh yeah. Well I’ll tell you why. When I lived in Houston I went to a place called good company barbecue. Have you ever been there?
Tim Herriage: [42:24] I have not. I’m going to write it down though.
Brad Sumrok: [42:25] Yeah, it’s Geo de [inaudible] place. But that was why I back when I live in the Houston man.
Tim Herriage: [42:31] For me barbecue though has become a metaphor. It’s become a metaphor for doing the things that are important to you. And what is the genesis of it? Brad was a lot of times people, I would hear about these great barbecue restaurants. Not Say I’m going to go one day. Well I can’t wait to go to that place or I’m going to go when the line’s not so long. And then you finally, those good things in life, right? I think you’ve got to make them a priority. So what’s the Brad Sunroc Barbecue? What’s that thing that you make time for? No matter what.
Brad Sumrok: [43:00] I love to be able to say, hey man, my life is just all perfect and like everything’s humming along right? But we all have challenges and struggles. But I could tell you the three things that are most important to me, and it’s not in any particular order, although maybe it should be. But I, I spend most of my time in my business truthfully. And so that’s obviously one of the top priorities in my life is growing and improving my business. The other two are my health. Um, which is why I consistently watch what I eat because I am not always perfect. I mean, I’m a little extra heavier now than I prefer to be, but I, for 20, 30 years, I’ve always, you know, me, I mean, I’ve always just cared about what I eat and I care about what I put into my mind, you know?
Brad Sumrok: [43:42] So I look at my mental and my physical health and I make that a priority. And when I kinda get a little off, I make sure that I swerved back into it. And that’s where I’m at right now. I mean when I get off the phone here, I’m going to the gym and I did yoga this morning and I went through a few month period, right? Didn’t do anything cause I was so focused on my business and the travel and just got out of it. But now it’s time to like get back into it cause I don’t want to allow myself to deviate. And then the third one is my relationship with my wife. And that is like anything what, what you, what you pay attention to prosperous and what you don’t pay attention to kind of gets rusty. So people will talk about the grass is greener on the other side and I believe that the grass is greener where you water your grass. So you know, why don’t I keep my grass water to my business and my health and in my relationship, my wife. And
Tim Herriage: [44:32] then hopefully those are the three main things that I’m focusing on right now. And I would say have been my priorities for the past many years of my life. Well there’s some really good advice there. Abroad. I mean, you know, and I think if people pay attention to their business or their desired business and they pay attention to their personal and physical and mental health, and they take care of the personal relationships they have in their life, uh, when you’re taking care of all three of those, the little challenges that come up are a lot easier to navigate. My Ex. So you’ve been listening to an all around good guy, a really smart guy, and the prettiest man I’ve ever met. Brad Sumrok. I folks, we’re out of time. Thanks for joining us on this episode of business and Barbecue podcast. Until next time, keep cookin!
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