How ex-pastor and wife accumulated 30 rental properties in 2 years

  • Camron and Alexis Cathcart sold their house and put a down payment on a rental property.
  • After their first flip, they were able to re-value the house and get cash refinancing.
  • They then use private and hard cash loans to buy more rental homes in a short period of time.

Camron and Alexis Cathcart own 30 rental units which they believe generate enough cash to make them financially free.

But before it got there, they lived in Denver, where Camron was pastor in a church. And they lived paycheck to paycheck. Any additional expense that arises would put them in a loop.

Their turning point was a $ 15,000 medical bill they incurred after transporting their daughter to an off-grid hospital when she had an allergic reaction.

“We didn’t know how to pay for it. I remember my wife and I sitting there one night looking at each other and like, that’s just not how we want to live,” Camron said.

Camron has always been interested in the idea of ​​generating passive income through real estate. But the only kind of experience he had was watching HGTV and following real estate influencers.

“We’ve always been interested in this. And so when we decided to go into real estate, I just bought all the books I could buy on real estate investing and listened to all the podcasts that I could listen, ”Camron said. “And that inspired me and motivated me to dive.”

How they started

Camron and Alexis had a big hurdle: real estate in Denver was too expensive. The typical house cost around $ 467,000 at the start of 2019, according to Zillow (it’s now around $ 563,000). So, in June 2019, they sold their house and decided to move to a more affordable city, namely St. Louis, where the typical home value is $ 161,038.

About three months later, they made their first purchase with the money they earned from selling their house. The purchase price for the first home was $ 150,000. They used the profits from their home sold to make the 25% down payment. Their original plan was to spend an additional $ 15,000 on cosmetic upgrades and then rent them out.

But it didn’t turn out as well as they had imagined. Upgrades were priced closer to $ 75,000 if a contractor supported them. Camron said it was an amount that would have put them at a loss. So the couple decided to do it themselves.

“We had a 1 year old daughter. We had a 2 week old daughter at the time. And we took a pack-and-play for our 2 week old daughter,” Camron said. “We moved a queen-size mattress over there and slept on it with our 1 year old daughter. And we stayed there for about a month and painted and laid the floors and refurbished the wardrobes. And we did it all. ourselves. “

Once the improvements were made, they were able to refinance their mortgage based on a higher appraised value of $ 200,000. This allowed them to cash in $ 160,000, or 80% of the appraised value, which the bank covered.

The house was then rented for $ 1,700 per month. Once they covered their monthly payments, which included the mortgage, vacancy, and insurance, they said they were making $ 220 per month in profits.

“Once we have completed this property even though we have done so many things wrong even though we had to leave money tied up in the property which is not what a seasoned real estate investor will tell you. looks like doing, he taught us and motivated us so we could do it, “Cameron said.” And so the second we finished with this property, we were looking for more. “

Scaling up to 30 properties

A month after renting the house, they were able to move on to purchase their next two properties. While they could have used their withdrawal money to make the next purchase, Camron realized during the process that they didn’t have to use their own money to scale.

So they kept their money in the bank as a cushion and used a private cash loan from a family friend to buy the second property and a hard cash loan for the third property. The first loan was for two months, with an interest rate of 12%. The hard money loan was also 12% but had an origination fee of 1%, which amounted to $ 750, based on their loan. And there was an additional 2% on the back end, which was $ 1,500 due at the end of the term.

They repeated the same process and did a cash refinance based on the increase in the value of the home. They then used the money to pay off their initial lenders. The conventional mortgage was then paid using rental income. This is commonly known as the BRRRR method, which means buy, rehabilitate, lease, refinance, and repeat. Three properties in, they said they were earning around $ 1,000 in net profit each month.

“And then we had cash flow rentals with no money out of pocket. My wife and I looked at each other and we were like, ‘This is amazing,’” Camron said. “I don’t know why more people aren’t doing this. And that’s when we were like, ‘This is what we want to do forever.'”

They repeated this process several times until they accumulated 30 cash-generating rental properties in less than two years. Public property documents and registration records viewed by Insider confirmed the size of their wallet.

One of the main things that Camron says really helped them on their journey was attending meetings with like-minded people doing the same thing. He also met another real estate influencer, Sam Primm, who owns 167 rental units himself. Camron and Alexis were able to learn from Primm’s approach to finding a good property and acquiring loans.

Camron recommends that beginners check out free online resources such as Larger pockets, a website that offers educational content, tools for finding deals and a network. He also highly recommends the YouTube channel SamFasterFreedom, that’s what he followed when he started.

Camron said the hardest part is taking the first step. But once that’s settled, the rest is easy. Even if you make mistakes along the way, that’s okay because you learn from them and get better in the next round.

“The most important thing for us was to overcome the fear of the unknown because we had never done it before. And so we had no real estate experience, and we were afraid to do it,” Camron said.

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