How we started our real estate investment journey

An investor at 21

Cam McLellan also says his childhood inspired a love of property. “My parents went bankrupt when I was in sixth grade,” he says. “When I was 14, we lived in a tin shed on my grandparents’ farm.

“I had my first light bulb moment when I was sitting in the back of the car one day outside the general store in Bairnsdale, hearing them arguing over whether to buy milk or bread because ‘they couldn’t afford both. I realized that I wanted a better financial future for my children.

McLellan left home at 16 and moved to Melbourne. “I knew the rich owned property, so I started talking to real estate investors about what I could do and tried to save for a deposit.”

He held multiple jobs, sold his car and rode his bike for nine months instead, and bought his first investment property right after turning 21, while still renting a shared apartment with friends.

“At the time, I was working for Telstra in a call center and I was making $ 22,000 a year. By the time I had moved onto the property three months later, it had increased by 40K. So my second light bulb moment was: I doubled my annual salary by just buying a property and hanging on to it. I immediately had the property re-evaluated, removed the equity, and purchased two more properties. It snowballed from there.

Twenty-six years and “hundreds of properties” later, McLellan is a member of the board of directors of the investment advisory group OpenCorp, and the author of My four year old real estate investor, a guide to real estate investing that he wrote for his children.

Research and mentorship support the success of real estate investing.Credit:Getty

The first edition of My Four-Year-Old The Property Investor launched in 2010, offering simple, jargon-free language anyone, including a four-year-old, could understand. The book sold over 120,000 copies and was ranked # 4 on Newslink’s bestseller list.

The success of the book is because Cam clearly describes the rules the rich use to build wealth. The book is a step-by-step investment instruction manual that covers the basics and the best information it gives to all of its OpenCorp clients.

His good plans? One: determine your borrowing capacity. And two: find a successful investor and ask them how they did it. “It’s very difficult to just fly away,” he says.

Homeownership education

Lisa and Brian also learned the value of real estate investing training. Their journey has included extensive research, tuition, and mentoring, and their strategy has evolved over the years from simply investing in a property close to home to making more thoughtful decisions, to balancing their portfolio. , converting houses into micro-apartments, and venturing into commercial real estate.

It has been quite an adventure. “I’m not going to say it didn’t cause tension and conflict, but it really brings you together,” Brian says. “Lisa has her strengths, I have my strengths and we are working towards a common goal. It really is a part-time business on the side.

For a limited time only, readers of The Age can request a free copy of Cam McLellan’s book My four year old real estate investor. Click here to claim yours.