It’s Just A Pile of Bricks

I wanted to share some the best piece of property investment advice I’ve ever been given. This advice hasn’t just changed the way I work in respect of property, but also across my whole life. 

In my early days of property investing, I was bidding on a house that required a bit of work. The owner had started work on it, decided not to go ahead with it for one reason or another and was looking to sell a half-completed renovation basically. 

It was a good opportunity, so I was keen to buy it. The problem was; the seller was stringing me a bit of a line; in hindsight I can see that. I made multiple offers on it and he kept turning them down and this was the root of the problem; I got emotionally competitive. 

Naturally, I’d done the calculations before the very first offer, so I knew what I had to get the property for, in order to make a good return on my investment. But I became emotional all the time the seller was rejecting my offer, so I kept increasing my price.

To give that word, “emotional” a bit of context. I’m talking ego here. Now we all do it, we want to prove that we’re good at what we’re doing and that we know our stuff, so my ego was keen to get this across. I kept negotiating higher and higher because I just had to win. 

As a result, I was negotiating in the sellers favour, not mine. All I could think of what the profit I was going to make, what I was going to do with that money and the next property I was going to buy when this one was done. But the fact is, I was looking integrity.

I think everyone is guilty of this at one point or another, and there’s no shame in that, we’re human. But it wasn’t until I spoke to my friend Luke that I was able to put it all into context. 

Luke is a very successful and experiences property developer. He’s been in the business for years and he said to me, “Tom, calm it down, mate. It’s just a pile of bricks. There’s another pile of bricks down the road.”

That was it. That was the mind -blowing moment when I realised that I was getting too involved in the deal.

At the end of the day, yes you want the property, and yes you’ve done the numbers but is it worth getting emotional about it? There is always going to be another property so distance yourself. It will give you the power when you’re negotiating and if you walk away from it, then so be it. There’s another one down the road. 

And this applies to any aspect of your career; there will always be another client, another deal, another customer. Don’t get so caught up in the buzz of it that you compromise your integrity or your financial goals.